In Praise Of The Small Concert Venue 

We've all been there - performers and listeners alike: Going to see a favorite artist (or to perform ourselves) in an intimate venue. There some magic that happens when you combine artistic performances with close quarters. Besides forcing the audience to listen, it also allows them to engage, and while this level of intimacy might feel uncomfortable to the uninitiated, once a performance is experienced this way, on both sides, it's very difficult to go back to a large-venue mindset.

Artists (speaking for myself) thrive in this kind of environment. Instead of connecting with only the front row, or those you can see, It is much more satisfying to play for a roomful of people and to actually be able look at each and every one there. And that can be intimidating as well, that much attention from, and if I am being honest scrutiny by, listeners. Instead of being able to hide behind the songs, I have to be the song (if that makes any sense). But there's no more wonderful, powerful, narcotizing experience than connecting with an audience on such a personal and intimate level.

Some friends of mine recently opened just such a venue in the Hill Country of Texas. The Uptown Art House (click the name for more info) is aiming to introduce artists - both visual and musical - to the Marble Falls community and the surrounding area. If you're ever in the neighborhood please check 'em out. Tell Jim and Laurie Halfpenny hey - nicer folks you'll not find anywhere. Whatever you do don't mention anything about the heirloom vase....

A very happy Monday to all of you from all of us at the House Of Strays. Bug (all 7lbs of ferocity) is having a Spa Day and is not happy, but the rest of us are, and glad to be among the vertical.... 

Here's an old live recording of "Copperhead Road" for your listening, downloading and sharing pleasure. It's FREE :)

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