Let's Get This Show on the Road! 

In March of 2020 I sent out a newsletter announcing my next couple of gigs, and had no idea it would be over a year before I'd be performing live again. We had all heard rumblings of this deadly virus, but we were optimistic things would stay reasonably "normal", and we'd be able to get back to gigging soon enough. No one was prepared for what was to come over the weeks, months and year ahead. Although we all figured out ways to carry on and live life despite the constant pivoting, us musicians and in particular everyone in the performing arts would question whether our beloved craft would have a place in our newly evolving world. Even as I write this, I am saddened at the loss of one of my regular performance venues in Boston: Les Zygomates, where I shared a very awkwardly positioned stage with many great musicians over the years, being careful not to trip and fall onto the drunk patrons at the bar below my feet. Many a time I would grumble at the inferior sound system, or the fact that I was so high above ground level that I could never get the bartender's attention to refill my water glass. But despite all of this I miss my regular gig at Les Zygs, and many of the other music venues which closed amidst the pandemic. 

Although we couldn't perform live, we found new ways of sharing our music, from live streamed Zoom concerts such as the one I did last October with Molly Flannery and Bill McCormack through the Global Music Foundation, to creating home recordings such as the demo of American Tune Steven Kirby and I recorded in our home studios, to backyard concerts and front porch jam sessions. We desperately needed to find ways to play, and people NEEDED to hear us. 

I am reminded of one of my favorite scenes from the movie, Titanic, where the ship's musicians cannot help but stop and play, despite the sinking of the ship: "Gentlemen, it's been a pleasure playing with you tonight". Or, another scene I'll never forget from the movie, Perfect Sense which is eerily about a global pandemic where everyone looses all five of their senses one after the other. In this scene people have already lost their sense of hearing, but are trying to adapt and live life. They are gathered in a concert hall simply to watch musicians play, and in desperation begin literally clinging to the speakers in order to feel the vibrations of the music. These are examples of how music can transform our human experience through a shared emotional language, bringing joy and even redemption amidst difficult times. 

Now that life is emerging again I am so happy to hear of new and improved venues opening up, and more importantly for music lovers, both performers and fans alike to be able to get back into the scene. I know I've been itching to perform again live...and on that note, Let's get this show on the road!

Global Music Foundation Concerts 


Last month I had a wonderful time performing my first virtual concert for the Global Music Foundation. Pianist Molly Flannery, bassist Bill McCormack and I got together to rehearse the day before and had so much fun being interviewed in advance of the concert in David O'Rourke's Daily Blast via Facebook Live. We discussed making music together in a Pandemic, the Boston Jazz scene and shared Old Stories between friends. We even got to perform a song in preview of the concert. Watch the interview HERE. As you can see from the photo below (thank you Nina Lesiga), we really enjoyed connecting virtually with friends as far away as Ireland and California via the Zoom event. If you didn't get a chance to attend, there will be a next time: We plan to do another live virtual concert with Global Music Foundation on Sunday, December 13th, so stay tuned!

Election Day Music  


I've got some big news: I can finally say my next Album is in the works! For the last few months I've been working with guitarist Steven Kirby, bassist Mark Poniatowski, pianist John Funkhouser and drummer Mike Connors on some incredible new arrangements for the album, which will hopefully be released in 2021. 

With all of the challenges upon us here in the U.S. as well as around the globe we couldn't wait to share a sneak peek into one of the tunes we have been working on. The song American Tune, by Paul Simon was originally released in 1973 right after president Nixon was elected. The lyrics refer to struggle, weariness, hard work, confusion and even homesickness. But, with greater and greater uncertainty surrounding all of us, it seems possible that the song could have been written in these times. 

Guitarist Steven Kirby and I decided we wanted to get right to work and create a duo recording of the song as we continue to work on an arrangement with the full band for the album. It is a work in progress, with vocals recorded in a socially distant way by myself in my home studio, as well as Steven's guitar recording in his. 

Please click the link to listen to our duo recording of American Tune.

My TV Debut! 

After testing the waters in the live storytelling arena with Massmouth, I was also given the opportunity to share a different story on stage. But not just any stage - THE stage: Stories From The Stage, that is! I am incredibly honored to have been chosen as a featured storyteller in last month's live taped episode, "All Dressed Up." Stories From The Stage is a National television program co-produced by WGBH Boston and World Channel, and curated by Massmouth which illustrates the power of real stories told by professional storytellers and newcomers to the craft. The series explores the art of storytelling with the introduction of a theme, interviews and on-stage performances. And what an amazing experience it was. The photo above is me waiting to go onstage. Stay tuned to find out when the show will air, most-likely next Fall!

The Big Mouth Off!! 

In November of 2018 I went to my very first Massmouth Story Slam, and decided to go for it. I got up, told a story, and bam! I WON Audience Choice Award for that evening!! I was immediately entered in to the Audience Choice Semi Finals, which is when the Audience Choice winners from the past year share their winning true-life stories for the chance to advance to Massmouth's storytelling finals: The Big Mouth Off! Well, guess what?! I actually went through to the final round and had the chance to share my story onstage at this, the 10th anniversary Big Mouth Off event! The photo above is me up on stage when Massmouth director, Cheryl Hamilton is reading off the winners - it felt just like at the Oscars! Although I did not win it was an incredible, fun experience and I am proud to be a part of the Boston storytelling community.

How The Time Passes 

Much. Time. Passed...Since I wrote my last blog entry. No matter, things have been a mite busy for me these past few years. Amidst the craziness of life with two tween/teen kids, single motherhood has forced me to hone my focus and time management skills to a fine pointed razor, cutting right to the core of "What Am I Doing With My Life?!"

Needless to say, I've become even more passionate about my music, more dedicated and oh, so productive. Having just completed my 211th (!!!) show since beginning on this musical journey I feel so blessed and proud - This is NOT to toot my own horn at my own awesomeness but simply to share my joy because, "I'm doing what I love! I'm doing what I love! I'm doing what I love!"

So...how can I make this thing that I love work? Because it's not just about how many performances I can have under my belt. It's about how can I make this even more meaningful, and yes, finally, how can I sustain myself doing this?

Let's break it down: First the creative part. I am already getting a great deal of joy and satisfaction out of performing, and I really connect with people through my music. But a new Album recording is definitely on order for the near future to give me a fresh project to focus on, and a new platform with which to show who I am within the broader Jazz community. It's time - WAY past time. So, more to come on that in the not too distant future...

A few years ago I discovered that I love teaching kids about Blues and Jazz. I started doing short, 30 min workshops in my kid's elementary school, with the help of the music teacher, then I did it at another school, etc. Slowly it has turned into a full-blown educational/performance presentation that will be provided as part of the Arts & Sciences enrichment offerings, here in my school district, and then hopefully, to other districts. I have so much fun teaching the kids something they wouldn't otherwise learn in their current school curriculum, and showing the kids what I do brings me so much satisfaction because it merges two sides of me; the Jazz singer and the Mom. It's a good thing all around.

In addition, I have been keeping myself quite busy during the day doing more and more performances for the elderly in various types of facilities, from Independent Living to Alzheimers Units, and even to Public Assisted Housing Facilities. I even did a show to a group of Holocaust survivors, which was one of the most warm and memorable performances I can remember, not to mention an honor. Singing for seniors brings so much mutual reward, as the audience shares personal stories and memories of my songs, some of which are quite interesting! The best part is seeing some of the vacant, expressionless faces come alive as they recollect, and begin to mouth the words and sway their bodies or tap their feet. Of all the experiences I've had while performing, there is no greater joy than helping someone dance in their wheelchair. 

So, as my son's school principal so eloquently put it, I really do have three important avenues with which to provide value through my music; The Entertainment value, through creating music and performing, the Educational value through the school program I am developing and the Therapeutic value I bring to performing for the elderly. This assures me that I CAN make this work, and I have every intention to. I am following my path, and picking up rose petals along the way.

Thanks for reading

Fall Frenzy 

As my performance dates seem to be multiplying like bunnies you'll need to hold on tight and fasten your seatbelts as we're in for a bit of a ride this Fall. I'll be hitting several of my regular spots, such as the elegant Les Zygomates in downtown Boston and cool and casual Tosca in Hingham, as well as taking the band up North again to the Vermont/New Hampshire Upper Valley to play at Canoe Club in Hanover as well as The Lyme Inn. My presence here in the New England Jazz scene seems to be solidifying as I continue to make more and more connections with venue owners, booking agents, fellow musicians and last but not least, my emerging fan base, who out of everyone are the ones I owe much to. Gratitude moment!

I will have had the pleasure of performing at three Music Festivals this summer, starting with the Jamaica Plain Porchfest, The New Haven Jazz Festival and this weekend's Newton Jazz Festival.

50 Gigs And Counting! 

After starting to perform with my trio in April 2014 I have had 56 gigs to date and counting. Many musicians play much more than that, but for me this number is astounding because it means I am finally living my passion, and very grateful...I'm on a roll and there is much more in store...

I also am extremely pleased to be a part of the highly rated t.v. show, This is The Nightlife With Dale LePage, which has received over 800,000 viewers so far!

Beauty and Wonder 

For those not living near me in Boston it is difficult to convey how treacherous and unprecidented the snowfall has been this winter. We are well past the denial phase, having accepted our new way of life tunneling around town between mountains of brown icebergs. Yet, here at the beginning of March (March is always a tease) it seems unbelievable there might still be snow up in the heavens left to fall, yet snowflakes fill the air even as I write this. There is seemingly no beauty left in the sparkling crystals; they just add one more layer to the ice walls defining our very existence.

This enormous amount of snow continues to wreak havoc on buildings and municipal systems, but amidst the calamity there have been moments of beauty and wonder in this '"Snowmageddon 2015". The natural process of melting/freezing/melting creates a wonderland of icicles, many of which have stopped me dead in my tracks.

I may be among a privelidged few who witnessed the sight pictured above: I was driving along the road near my family home up in rural Vermont when I came across what appeared to be a leak in some sort of underground pipe, which obviously contained hot water. The water was spurting out of the top and spraying down, creating layers upon layers of ice as it froze in the cold air. The whole sight, along with the antique farm equipment struck me as surreal, particularly since no one was anywhere nearby to see it with me. There was not a single person on the road, nor at the homes nearby. No one was with me to witness this incredible, awe-inspiring improvised ice sculpture. It could have been a tourist attraction. It should have been covered with kids playing on the snow-covered mound, breaking off chips of the ice which had formed frozen waves of beauty, capturing the gleaming sunset. But there was not even one footprint disturbing the perfect, natural layers of snow and ice, and so on and on it continued, with just a couple of small spurts of water visible at the top. I was the only one I know who got to see this amazing sight, and it will be one that I always remember from this winter. I am grateful.

A Happy New Year To Be Grateful For 

A new year and so much synchronicity already.  Things just feel like they are clicking. I am excited for this year ahead, but mostly grateful for all the musicians in my life who have become true friends.  It feels so good to be a part of such a cool group of creative folks who share something so dear to us all.