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Posts tagged ‘singer-songwriters’

17
May

Maine Photos – Autumn, Winter, Spring & Music – the marcrescue blog

 

Greetings All,

 

I’ve been so neglectful about posting an updated blog that….

 

A: Most people have forgotten entirely about me

 

B: A few have actually reached out and asked about the blog

 

  1. Not because they miss me  – they miss the photos

 

Life is so chock full of busy that I didn’t even realize it’s been a touch over six months since I sent an update.

 

So here in a nutshell – or rather photos….is what’s been happening.

 

(With a music update at the end – so you don’t have to wade through that to get to the photos)

 

 

Last fall was – as always – a great time to hike. Here’s what our town looks like from the top of Mt Battie as the leaves are changing:

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Acadia National Park is not far away and hiking there is always good for the soul:

 

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The annual Camden International Film Festival (CIFF) is a huge event in town. It’s rated as one of the top 12 documentary film festivals in the world. Quite nice for a town this small and so far off the beaten path.

 

But for good reason – it’s exceptional:

CIFF 09-18-2015

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We had a great time at the anniversary showing of “Back To The Future” at a local theatre that showed it when it first came out (The Strand was built in 1926 – and is totally restored today).

 

BTTF pic four

Even better – a mysterious DeLorean showed up in front of the theatre for the film:

BTTF bw Delorean 10-21-2015

 

Can’t beat Halloween in a small town. The town closes down a number of blocks for a Halloween block party – and this year we had a flash mob show up to the tune of “Thriller”:

Halloween Flashmob 2015

 

These weirdo’s were out trick or treating::

Halloween Selfie 2015

 

One of our favorite challenges – Beth’s Farm Market’s Corn Maze.

Maddening:

Beth's Corn Maze 2015

 

For the second year in a row we split up – me against the family – and they won.

I kept finding this sign over and over again – arghhhh:

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Before you know it – it’s time for the annual Christmas parade….does yours feature a lobster…with Christmas lights on it?

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How about a Lobster Trap Christmas Tree!

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It was a year of weird weather patterns this winter.

But as always some interesting snowpeople appeared in the yard:

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Cap America Snowman 03-21-2016

 

One great thing about winter is that the snow covers all the brush in the woods and with snowshoes you can hike places you can’t get close to in summer…..for instance you can find a tree that’s been ravaged by woodpeckers – hard to believe they can do this – but they do:

Woodpecker Tree - Copy

 

The hardest part about winter for us….it’s not the snow….it’s not the cold….it’s when the annual box of See’s “Nuts & Chews” box that my Uncle and Aunt mail to us from the West Coast every holiday season – turns into a box of empty wrappers….sighhhh:

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Before you know it – Spring is here and it’s time for one of our favorite days in Maine – “Maine Maple Sunday”. The day when all the maple sugar houses open their doors for tours, free samples and the best maple syrup you can buy – straight from the tap.

We hit three houses every year. The first is Sparky’s (http://sparkyshoneyandmaple.com/) – close to us and besides great maple syrup – they also produce the best honey from their bees:

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Honey

 

We also head to Simmons & Daughters (http://www.simmonsanddaughterssugarhouse.com/) for fresh “maple” cotton candy. Once you’ve had maple cotton candy you’ll never go back to the weird colored stuff they sell at fairs and circuses:

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They really are two of the “daughters”:

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Then it’s over to see Mark at Bradstreet Maple Farm (http://www.getrealmaine.com/farms/Bradstreet-Maple-Farm). Always a party with great samples (Didn’t get a photo of the maple fudge – the line was too long)

Waffles, ice cream with fresh maple syrup:

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Great maple baked beans:

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Mark always has a crowd around him because he’s always teaching people about making great syrup:

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You cannot believe how wonderful the aroma is inside a maple sugaring house.

Can’t wait to walk in the door again next year:

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A weekend trip to Portland is always fun….and it’s a wonder to take in the “Lock Fence” in old town by the harbor. There’s a chain link fence where people are allowed to put locks on – most with written or engraved messages:

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I’ve already got a lock picked out for our family to attach next visit:

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But spring time in Maine means it’s time to leave.

Leave?

Well for a few days – our favorite family trip / vacation is to New Orleans for Jazzfest:

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The fest as always was terrific – even after some pretty heavy rains – and we forgot our rain boots this year – which is essential for muddy grounds….but a little washing and a hair dryer in the hotel rooms dries out even the wettest and muddiest sneakers:

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Everyone always asks who was our favorite act….and I always say – no matter who the headliners are…when we were there Paul Simon, Tedeschi-Trucks etc….

(Here’s the lineup for all 7 days – we were at the Fest 2 days:)

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…my favorite moments are hearing artists that I’ve never heard before and are amazing.

This year my wife and I agreed that our fav this year was the PresHall Brass – led by 82 year old saxophonist Daniel “Weenie” Farrow. They are the resident brass band at Preservation Hall….and soooo good:

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A great reminder – however – of how fortunate and lucky the musicians are that have had great successful full time music careers – are the bands that are playing outside the gates….in the street….for tips.

These two bands….of kids…..were amazing:

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In New Orleans it’s like that every year. In the streets around Jazzfest, in the French Quarter – the quality of the street musicians is just stunning.

Besides the Fest itself….and of course the food…..can you say “Oysters at Felix’s”?

Oysters at Felix's 2016

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There’s nothing better than wandering through the French Quarter admiring the architecture. Such a beautiful, historical place:

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A lot of the buildings have historical plaques that tell the story of the building:

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It’s now an art gallery.

But my favorite find was this one.

A red house with a nondescript store:

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Even the plaque was sorta dull…..until you got to the end…..you never know what you’re going to find in New Orleans:

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Whoa!

 

Speaking of streetcars…..we’ve discovered if we time it right.

We can spend the day at Jazzfest,

Hit the French Quarter for dinner afterwards.

Finish the night at perhaps the best place to end any night – no matter what time it is (they’re open 24 hours a day – every day of the year):

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And then catch the last streetcar of the evening on the line heading towards our hotel:

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A wonderful end to a wonderful trip.

 

A word about music.

Most everyone I work with at Mishara Music has spent the year touring, writing, exploring but not recording.

So we’ve been working under the radar – marketing and building the audience for our artists.

Streaming….although some might feel angst about it….frees us up to do some very dramatic promotions.

As streaming replaces downloads – we realized that we have even more freedom to give more music away.

So….our 7th Mishara Music free song sampler at Amazon.com…..which contains some of our biggest selling tracks:

MisharaSampler7

The free download is at:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01F541CVQ?ie=UTF8&keywords=mishara%20samplers&qid=1463442753&ref_=sr_1_1&s=dmusic&sr=1-1-mp3-albums-bar-strip-0

 

Listen on Spotify at:

https://embed.spotify.com/?uri=spotify%3Auser%3Amisharamusic%3Aplaylist%3A3X8lXbbALNV9CsthDoqrEf

 

Listen on Soundcloud at:

https://soundcloud.com/misharamusic/sets/the-artist-sampler-mishara

 

Enjoy!

Marc

PS Talk about tough decisions – my wife took a photo of me making one of the most difficult of the year (and truth be told – she took a lot of the photos above as well – probably the ones you like the most)….what boxset to buy on Record Store Day….so many boxes….so few funds!

Box Sets Record Store Day 04-16-2016

 

Marc Ratner

Mishara Music

 

E-mail: marcrescue@gmail.com

Website: www.misharamusic.com

WordPress: www.marcrescue.wordpress.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/marc.ratner

Twitter: www.twitter.com/marcrescue

 

 

 

 

 

 

23
Jun

Spring in Maine / Snow’s finally gone / Photos & Music / The best Presidential story gets better! – Life in Maine with family & music – the Marcrescue blog

Greetings All,

It’s been a very busy few months since I last wrote an update about life in Maine and the workings of a very independent music company.

If you read my last update – there was a story about how my family has a handshake connection with Abraham Lincoln.

At the end of this letter – I’ll reprint a reply to that story from a friend of mine that has a similar story about another great American president. Side by side – the two stories are astounding and remind us that our history is not as distant as we might imagine.

When I last wrote – Maine was covered in snow.

Which impacted our annual spring Maine Maple Sunday visits to our favorite maple sugar / syrup producers. They open their doors up one day a year for everyone to visit and celebrate the process.

We hit our three favorites again this year – first off stopping at Sparky’s – where they were busy loading wood onto the fire that boils down the syrup in a contraption that resembles nothing else.

The first thing you notice is that unlike most years there was still snow on the ground – a lot of it:

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Of course this is Maine.

A reminder of that:

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It takes a lot of wood to make maple syrup. On average it takes boiling down about 40 gallons of sap to make just one gallon of maple syrup:

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We also love stopping at Simmons & Daughters Sugar House (always a party goin’ on) for MAPLE cotton candy – nothing like it:

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And there’s no one more helpful and friendly than Mark at Bradstreet Maple Farm – he spends the entire day educating everyone about the process:

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This year was going to be a complete mystery on how much syrup he was going to be able to produce.

Every season he has a chart of the previous year’s production and holds a guessing contest on what this year will produce.

Winner gets free syrup:

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This year will be off – because putting in the taps on the trees was a bit more difficult. As Mark demonstrates – this was how deep the snow was – that he had to work through to place the taps:

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You might think real maple syrup is expensive – but when you figure it out – I’m betting the producers don’t even come close to making minimum wage.

They don’t do it for the money – they do it because they love it.

This year we hit a another maple celebration in Vermont when we went to visit family.

Another state that takes it seriously:

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They had lots of different maple products for sale at the festival but nothing came close to how wonderful these were – homemade donuts with fresh maple cream.

Forget about Dunkin’, Krispy Kreme etc.

They got nuthin’ compared to these:

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And ya can’t beat the entertainment – free for kids:

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Speaking of delicious.

Spent a few days in Philadelphia at the annual Non-Comm Music gathering – where public radio stations and music folks get together for meetings and amazing musical performances.

I was so busy running from one great performance to another I didn’t have a moment to stop to take any photos this year.

Except for the one time I slowed down for the yearly trip to Jim’s Steaks:

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Thank goodness I don’t live near Jim’s or Nellie’s Donuts.

How do people resist the temptation?

I have no idea.

Of course the food in Maine isn’t too shabby either.

Backing up a bit to the end of winter – a snowstorm on Valentine’s Day is no surprise – but that didn’t stop us – a great night out at the Fog Bar in Rockland. Movie’s projected on the wall, a great new duck and sweet potato Shepherd’s Pie and fresh oysters!

Valentine's Night - Fog Bar - 02-14-2015
But that winter of snow & cold seems long ago now.

Our indie music company Mishara Music released some very cool albums this Spring.

First a new EP by Cass Dillon – an amazing songwriter and performer. Second – an album unlike any other – poetry, storytelling and some great guitar licks by Dave Morrison and then – containing a track from both – our 6th free song sampler on Amazon.com:

Mishara Spring 2015 release
Listen to Cass at our YouTube listening channel for his EP “Oregon Road”. Amazing melodies:

Listen to Dave on Soundcloud – storytelling like you’ve ever heard before:

We’ve found that encouraging people to sample free songs from the company builds our audience exponentially.

Here’s a sampling of some reviews on Amazon from our samplers – you’ll understand why we do this – we’ve been building a brand:

Amazon Reviews June 2015
For our latest offering on Amazon this spring – we put together a sixpack of free songs:

Amazon Singles Sixpack
Brand new this week on YouTube / Spotify / Soundcloud – is a 10 tune playlist of some of our favorite songs – with the kicker that they’re all available as free downloads on those Amazon samplers.

Here are the listening links.

YouTube link:

Spotify:

Soundcloud link:

So now here’s the link to Mishara Music on Amazon – where you’ll find those ten free songs and another 60+ additional free downloads:

http://tinyurl.com/MisharaMusic

How do all those free tracks do?

Charts on Amazon (and iTunes) change hourly – but checking randomly right now as I type this – here’s what Mishara Music has on the Top 100 Free All Format Chart on Amazon at this moment.

10 of the top 100:

Amazon 10 Top 100 06-22-2015
As I tell our artists and anyone else that will listen to me.

Build your audience – build your brand.

More new music, artists and always additional free songs are coming this summer.

In the meantime – maybe we can sneak out a bit and enjoy this wonderful change in the weather.

The blooms on the apple trees this year were the most bountiful in years:

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I have two favorite types of flowers and both are almost wild in Maine – they’re all over the place.

My favorite aroma flower is the lilac:

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And my favorite visual flower is the Iris:

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We also have that wonderful giant bowl of water called the Atlantic Ocean nearby.

The sailing schooners in Camden harbor have been prepping for a busy summer season.

You can sail on the biggest of schooners for a week:

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Or for two hours on the “Owl”:

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My wife lives for being outdoors in the summer.

We try to make the most of it.

A road trip ends up with a great view of the sunset over a small beach:

Chairs 2 at Sunset
Our favorite used bookstore is only open on weekends in the summer in a small shack on an ocean cove tucked away on a side road in the middle of nowhere.

You’d be amazed at how many people find their way there.

(Of course – you need a lot of reading material around here startin’ about November for about five months or so):

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Do people visit lighthouses because of the lighthouses?

Or because they just happen to be built in the most scenic spots?

I suppose we could do a survey – but once you’re there – who cares:

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Got our first camping trip in.

For us camping is not so much about going to a different place physically – it’s more about the psychological change.

So we went all of about five miles down the road to Camden Hills State Park:

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We can walk the path along the ocean and glimpse a view of a schooner sailing by and of Islesboro Island out beyond:

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Our favorite campsite is in a wonderful stand of beautiful trees:

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And if there’s one thing most important at the end of a great day of hiking and camping – it’s roasting marshmallows over the campfire:

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This past weekend was fun.

Saturday was the annual Summer Solstice street celebration in our neighboring town Rockland:

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Big fun – restaurants giving out free samplers of their dishes, games for kids, demonstrations, booths and on every side street they had music playing – acoustic musicians on one corner, a dj on the next, then a rock band – here’s a local jazz orchestra:

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But my favorite this year was the Juke Rockets Blues Band.

What’s the old saying? “Youth is wasted on the young”

As you get older you learn to never underestimate anyone.

My suggestion – don’t ever walk up to the guy with the big white beard and say “Hey, you wanna have a blues guitar showdown?”

You’d lose.

Come to think of it – if ZZ Top is ever looking for an additional guitar player – I got the guy:

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Sunday was Father’s Day.

I ran into a T-Rex at a showing of Jurassic World:

Jurassic World Father's Day 06-21-2015
Remember when I talked about a couple of my favorite foods up above in the letter?

I gotta say – there’s nothing better than home cooking.

I got treated like royalty on Father’s Day.

First off Kim made a bbq hash for brunch – with smoked turkey from our favorite bbq joint – “4 Points BBQ” in Winterport, Maine. Smoked turkey, onions, garlic, peppers, sweet potatoes, white potatoes, some secret seasoning etc.

Alas no photo – but – here’s a photo of a similar hash from a camping trip last summer – that used some “4 Points” beef brisket instead of the smoked turkey – you’ll get the idea:

Beef Brisket, Sweet Potato, Potato, Onion Hash cooking Searsport Shores 07-27-2014
I thought that was my treat for the day – boy was I wrong.

Dinner at Kim’s mom was a total surprise – homemade strawberry shortcake for dessert – using corn bread instead of a hard biscuit – so much better – but the big treat was my favorite dish of all time – Crayfish Etouffee – made by Kim’s mom – who learned to make it when they lived in Lafayette, Louisiana years ago – with fresh flown in Louisiana crawfish.

I ate more food in one day than I usually eat in a month.

Nothing like Father’s Day with the family:

Father's Day Crawfish Etouffee Strawberry Shortcake 06-21-2015
Which reminds me – let’s revisit that Lincoln story.

In the last post I wrote – I described the story of my father and uncle meeting an army veteran that my grandfather brought home from the “Old Soldiers Home” for dinner in the 1930’s when they were young kids.

Mr Carpenter shook their hands saying “Shake the hand that shook the hand of Abraham Lincoln”.

Turns out President Lincoln came to meet with his generals in 1862 and Mr. Carpenter was a young soldier at the meeting location and was part of the line that Mr. Lincoln walked down – shaking each soldier’s hand.

Which means that my father and uncle were two handshakes away from Lincoln.

Which means that I and my son (who’s 9 and has shaken the hand of my now 91 year old uncle – (who’s got his own great stories – read about him in the last post) are only 3 handshakes away.

150 years after the end of the civil war.

Pretty amazing.

But with this letter from my friend John Baker – who’s hand both my son and I have shaken – it gets better.

Here’s John’s story:

At my prep school in Groton, Mass, was a retired teacher, Mr. Richards, who had taught both my father and grandfather (class of 1909). Mr. Richards was revered. He died before I actually went to the school, but not before my older brother did.

On a “Parents’ Weekend” as it was called, in 1959 my father called on Mr. Richards (now THERE’s an old phrase) with me, my brother and my mother.

My father, after tea, became solemn, and asked Mr;. Richards to “tell my sons about the very elderly man you met and spoke of to my class back in 1934, my senior year, which was your annual story for the senior class.”

Mr. Richards nodded slowly, looked at us, and said “I haven’t told this story since I retired on 1951, but your father has asked.”

In 1888 when I was a student at this school, and home for Easter, my father introduced me to an aging member of our church in Boston. The man, it turned out, was over 100 years old. My father, who had seen and spoken to this gentleman many times, asked me to remember and revere that handshake, because, he said, “You have just shaken the hand of a man who, as a young boy, shook the hand of George Washington.”

Father then said that we two boys were to remember that we had just shaken the hand of a man who had shaken the hand of a man who had shaken the hand of the “Father of our country.”

Mr. Richards died a year later at the age of 90, and I must think that we may have been the last of his “boys” to hear that story.

John

So let’s recap.

History seems so long ago.

But in these instances – it’s close up and personal.

If we happen to run into each other and we shake hands….that means that you will be four handshakes away from Abraham Lincoln (I’m three) and five handshakes away from George Washington (I’m four).

Even better.

My son is nine.

In 2076 – the 300th birthday of the United States he’ll be 70.

And astonishingly – only three handshakes away from Abraham Lincoln and four away from George Washington.

I love history.

But history doesn’t need to be about events hundreds of years ago.

I was lucky enough to celebrate history earlier this year.

For my son’s birthday in January we did a 3 day road trip to NYC.

We ride the rails:

On the road again - 01-04-2015
My wife and I were lucky enough to have signed up for a pair of tickets to a show last October that came through in December when we’d almost given up hope.

I’ve been in the entertainment business for over 40 years and actually had been to the show before – escorting one of the guests appearing that night – lady named Cher. Now that was an experience.

But tickets to this show – for the audience – were never given out to anyone except regular people that wrote in for tickets.

They never cared about catering to any VIP’s or the record companies.

You want tickets – you write in like everyone else.

They even warned you – if you’re chosen to receive tickets – you have to answer a random trivia question about the show.

I knew the answer to the question when they called.

They only wanted real fans in the audience.

My wife and I were real genuine fans.

Watched every night.

And miss him so much.

But we got to spend one great afternoon in the theatre for a taping.

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I got a hat. A treasure:

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I was there for a part of history.

Marc

PS We’re all busy these days.

Everyone I know is busier than they’ve ever been.

But I guess there are still people out there that find the time to do the unexpected.

Have a bit of fun.

Something I have to do more of.

Don’t know who and don’t know why – but I sure did appreciate it:

Stop
Marc Ratner

Mishara Music

 

E-mail: marcrescue@gmail.com

Website: http://www.misharamusic.com

WordPress: http://www.marcrescue.wordpress.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/marc.ratner

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/marcrescue

 

19
Sep

Finally, a photo wrap-up of summer in Maine 2014 / the Marcrescue blog “Life in Maine with an Eight Year Old & an Appreciation of Music”

Greetings All,

A few notes before the attack of Maine summer photos:

1. If you’d like to make sure you receive this blog all the time – either sign up on the right hand side or if you’d prefer to receive via email – email me at marcrescue@gmail.com
2. You’ll notice during my music notes that we’ve made it extremely easy to listen to the music via Soundcloud and Spotify – whichever you prefer. You’ll also notice no sales links. Yes sales are important and if someone wants to purchase any of our songs – they’re always available on iTunes & Amazon. The key to building our audience however is getting the music heard.  Music has to heard to be appreciated.

Summer happens.

In our family and in our community here in Maine everyone makes the most of it.

Not because the season is short and winter is just over the horizon…..we love winter as much as summer.

But because there’s a spirit here about living life and everyone we know has been out and about.

The last time I checked in with everyone – we had just passed this milestone:

Last Day Of 2nd Grade - Letter Size

Then summer took off like a rocket!

Are you ready……we’ve going to cover a lot of ground here and quickly.

It’s officially summer – how do we know? Because the people down the hill put out their annual summer sign…..which perhaps wasn’t written out exactly the way it was intended…..I sure don’t know any kids that play slowly…..but then again – it grabs your attention:

Children At Slow Play - Letter Size

Gotta check the local swimming hole after a rainstorm:

After The Storm - checking the water - Letter Size

Before you know it – “Coach Pitch” baseball is all over already and it’s time to get your end of season medal:

Coach Pitch 2014 - Letter Size

Harvest time for wild Maine blueberries – got to pick up our 10 pound box…..we freeze them and have all sorts of blueberry treats all winter:

Blueberries 2014 - Letter Size

Whew let’s take a breather & cool off – how about some Lemon Sorbet for Ethan and Coffee Heath Bar Crunch for dad on Father’s Day from Camden Cone:

Father's Day Lemon Sorbet Coffee Heath Bar Crunch 2014 - Letter Size

Can’t beat Maine for summer camping:

Camping Searsport Shores 2014 - Letter Size

Especially when you can take your morning camping coffee to the bench 20 yards away overlooking the ocean:

Camping Coffee July 2014 - Letter Size

We take our eating seriously when we camp.

Some leftover beef brisket from the nearby BBQ place from the night before makes some mighty fine beef brisket hash for morning breakfast at the campsite – and yes it was every bit as good as it looks – not everything in Maine has to have lobster in it to be great:

Beef Brisket Camping Hash July 2014 - Letter Size

But that said – Searsport Shores – our favorite ocean side campground takes eating seriously. Their Saturday night lobster bake makes it awfully tough to hike back to your campsite:

Camping Dinner 2014 - Letter Size

Fourth Of July…..bummer no fireworks…..rained out…..but how ’bout the nifty homemade popsicles that mom made:

Homemade popsicles 2014 - Letter Size

Now let me take a moment here to say….during all of this…..work never stopped.

It never stops.

And some swell stuff happened this summer.

Chris Ross has spent the summer writing songs for his new album which he’ll begin recording shortly. He makes acoustic YouTube videos of each song when he’s finished writing them.

Can’t wait for the full band studio versions of these.

“Blame”:

“Burns”:

“You Can Have Mine”:

“Drunk Women”:

You can hear “Halfway To Wonderland” – Chris’ last album here on Soundcloud:

Or on Spotify:

 

One alternative to writing the new album….is spending the summer playing the new album at festivals.

That’s what Connor Garvey did.

Seemed to be a good plan.

Here’s where a partial list of where he played this summer:

Connor Garvey Summer Festivals 2014 - Letter Size

Here’s how it went – one of those summers where you need to get an extra suitcase to take home the awards:

Connor Garvey Summer Festivals 2014 Awards - Letter Size

Wanna listen to both of Connor’s new albums…..easy to do…..just posted both new albums on Soundcloud & Spotify.

“Before The Meteors” – the live album that mirrors all the songs that are in the new studio album is here:

Also on Spotify:

The studio album “Meteors And Beating Hearts” is here on Soundcloud:

Spotify:

There’s another way to spend the summer – recording.

Both Ken Yates and Barnaby Bright have been spending time in the studio.

Ken has been recording some new songs and filmed one of the tracking sessions.

Here’s “Once More To The Lake”:

Here’s Ken’s last album “twenty-three” on Soundcloud:

And on Spotify:

Don’t have anything to share from the Barnaby Bright album recording sessions yet – but coming soon.

The whole Barnaby Bright fan universe is anxiously waiting to hear the studio versions of the songs they’ve been playing on tour breaks all summer.

Including this gem – “Just The Same” – recorded last year at WNRN in Charlottesville:

“The Longest Day” their last album can be heard in it’s entirety on Soundcloud:

& Spotify:

I’ve been very busy all summer preparing new releases for this fall. More about that in a moment.

I’ve always been a believer in contributing to society in one way or another. Many might remember that I volunteered on a mountain search and rescue team for over 20 years while living in California.

Now in Maine I’ve found a new way to help….using my knowledge and long association with the music industry….I’m involved with our beautiful local historical opera house.

Built in 1894 and totally restored in the 1990’s…..I find myself during the Camden Opera House’s 120th anniversary….on the town board of directors.

Something I can do to help…..but unfortunately…..even after years and years in the music business…..I still can’t figure out which photographer is taking the photo…..arghhhh:

COH News Summer 2014 - Letter Size

The Camden Opera House is such a great place for artists to perform…..lo and behold here’s Barnaby Bright playing there this summer:

Barnaby Bright Camden Opera House 08-09-2014 - Letter Size

As a special encore – Becky and Nathan stepped away from the mic’s – because the acoustics are so great….and sang at the front of the stage joined by special guest Liz Longley….what a great night:

Barnaby Bright Liz Longley Camden Opera House 08-09-2014 - Letter Size

This being Maine one can’t go too long without mentioning lobster again. As always we had a great time at our annual local “Lobster Fest”.

Here’s something you probably haven’t seen before unless you live in Maine.

The lobster trap race at the festival.

How many times can you make it back and forth across the harbor running on the lobster traps without falling in?

Lobster Trap Race 2014 - Letter Size

If you’re a kid most likely your favorite part of Lobster Fest is the bungee jump attraction…..where you get to dream of being some sort of superhero while you’re flying in the harness:

Lobster Bungee Jumping 2014 - Letter Size

We always end our day at the festival riding the ferris wheel:

Ferris Wheel Lobster Festival 2014 - Letter Size

You cannot believe how many lobsters they serve during the five days of the Lobster Festival….here’s the count near the end of the last day – that’a a lot of lobsters:

Lobster Festival Lobsters 2014 - Letter Size

It was also a great summer for gardens……here’s the first of many batches of cherry tomatoes:

First Tomatoes 2014 - Letter Size

At the end of the summer we get a carton of heirloom tomatoes from our favorite vendor at our local farmers market:

Heirloom Tomatoes 2014 - Letter Size

Lo and behold – they magically (with a lot of hard work by Kim) turn into the best sauce I’ve ever had in my life. It’s gonna be a wonderful winter:

Heirloom Sauce 2014 - Letter Size

But we’re not there yet.

First a little mini-golf…..and this time Mom got the hole-in-one:

Mom's Hole In One Summer 2014 - Letter Size

Next up a day trip to Portland to check out the Jason Spooner Band performing at the Old Port Festival (they were great as always – as is the new album “Chemical”).

Just across from the stage we found this fence along the harbor (there’s always a cool discovery every time we got to Portland) – next time we’re bringing a lock.

If you look closely every lock has a message written on it. And they’re locked there by the people that put them there. So there they stay. Totally cool. What a great idea:

Love Locks 1 - Letter Size

Love Locks 2 - Letter Size

On the way back from Portland we’re legally required to stop at LL Bean’s Flagship store.

It’s open 24 hours a day / 365 days a year.

You meet the nicest people there at 3am:

LL Bean Summer 2014 - Letter Size

Summer time for us is not just about eating…..although it might seem that way.

The town library sponsors summer movies in the amphitheater next to the library.

Bring a camp chair and a blanket:

Summer Movies 2014 - Letter Size

Our local Bay Chamber Orchestra takes over downtown for an afternoon and dispatches classical players to storefronts, street corners and shops to perform for us. I caught this great duo at Zoot Coffee:

Zoot Bay Chamber Summer 2014 - Letter Size

Of course there’s the beach.

A good place to catch up on Harry Potter:

Harry Potter LBI 2014 - Letter Size

And contemplate the beauty of nature (credit report here – many of the artistic photos in this post including this one were taken by my wife Kim. Every time I see one of her photos like this – the first words out of my mouth are “I’m stealing this one for the blog”):

Art in Nature LBI 2014 - Letter Size

Had to get in some hiking:

Summer Hiking 2014 - Letter Size

One of the sessions at summer day camp is theatre….there’s nothing like hearing your kid singing “Kids” from Bye Bye Birdie….”Kid’s? Whatsa matter with all these kids today?…..Why can’t they be like we were – perfect in every way….” (they even designed their own costumes):

Kids 2014 - Letter Size

Of course after a hard afternoon of summer theatre – it’s time to cool off with a Sno-Kone at River Ducks:

Sno-Kone 2014 - Letter Size

As we seem to be back at food again……how ’bout some fresh Maine raspberries….so sweet:

Raspberries 2014 - Letter Size

Another trip to Portland to see the Sea Dogs (Red Sox Double AA Farm Team) win in the bottom of the 10th:

Portland Sea Dogs 10th inning win 2014 - Letter Size

What a surprise on the way down to Portland…….an annual gathering of VW campers of all ages…..all stopped at a rest stop to say goodbye to each other until next year’s meeting.

I had one identical to the beige one just to the right of center (arrow pointing at it) back in the 1980’s.

VW Campers 2014 - Letter Size

I never should have sold it.

The group even has it’s own t-shirts:

25 Years of Camping 2014 - Letter Size

Kim’s told me getting another one is now on our bucket list.

That’s a good addition.

Better get crackin’ on some new music if I’m going to get Kim her camper.

I fell in love with a song called “Rain” a number of years ago by an artist named Meggan Waltman.

Almost had the opportunity to release it….but stuff happened and never did get it out.

So I just obsessed about the song for years.

After Mishara Music (www.misharamusic.com) was established as a label……I went looking for Meggan.

She’d vanished.

Phone disconnected, no Facebook, no Twitter, no search results.

Zip, nadda, nothin.

Bummed I was.

One day out of the blue……an email in my inbox.

“Hi Marc, It’s Meggan….I’m back doing music again”.

Oh Happy Day.

Turns out she’d moved to Japan for a number of years.

That’s why I couldn’t find her.

So – this time I didn’t hesitate.

Didn’t pass “Go”.

Didn’t collect “$200”.

Got a Meggan Waltman EP titled “Nomad” out in record time.

A digital release to start.

8 tracks from 3 different recording sessions over a period of years.

Meggan Waltman - Letter Size

“Rain” is the first track.

And I want everyone to hear it.

So it’s free download.

No email required, no registration required.

Nothing like that.

Just click, download and enjoy:

http://misharamusic.com/free/rain/

Meggan Waltman Rain

Wanna hear the entire EP?

Soundcloud:

Spotify:

“Rain” will also be included in the next Mishara Music Free Song Sampler on Amazon.

This will be edition # 6.

Amazon Mishara Music Sampler 6 - Letter Size

You can get all five of the previous samplers anytime on Amazon.

Over 50 totally free songs by Mishara artists and friends of the label.

http://tinyurl.com/AmazonFreeMisharaSamplers

Amazon Samplers - Letter Size

Here’s a number for you.

Amazon Free Downloads 09-15-2014 - Letter Size

That’s how many free songs have been downloaded off of the Mishara Free Song Samplers on Amazon.

I’m looking forward to 2 million.

The passion here is sharing great music.

Next up.

A gem.

A songwriter (with a degree in English no less)

With songs the likes of I’ve never heard before.:

Ashley1 - Letter Size

You’ll meet her in the next blog post.

In the meantime.

The sky is changing – the seasons are changing – it’s getting darker earlier:

Moon over House End of Summer 2014 - Letter Size

But the cycle of life is always a surprise.

What’s new becomes old….becomes new again.

Ethan found our old antique dial phone (from the 1930’s) and insisted we hook it up for him.

He makes all his calls on it.

(He only has 3 numbers he can call – his dad, his mom and his nana).

No smart phone this…but so totally cool:

New Phone 2014 - Letter Size

And of course we end where we started:

First Day of Third Grade - Letter Size

Best,

Marc

Marc Ratner
Mishara Music

E-mail: marcrescue@gmail.com

Website: http://www.misharamusic.com

WordPress: http://www.marcrescue.wordpress.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/marc.ratner

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/marcrescue

9
May

Ever given away a million dollars? I have….in song. The Marcrescue blog.

Greetings,

This is what you might call an in-between post.

I’ve got a lot to write about – and that will come next week – but in the meantime  – officially – we just passed a major threshold and I thought it might be worth mentioning.

I’m the managing partner of a small independent music management and record label company called Mishara Music.

http://www.misharamusic.com

We call it – “A Home For Singer-Songwriters”.

Why?

Because it’s what we love.

It’s all starts with a song.

No song……it doesn’t matter how great a musician or singer you are.

These days the commercial music world is all about manufacturing commercial music that SELLS.

Makes money.

Very often it’s the extreme outrageous marketing and the reality “karoke” tv shows that expose the music.

So…..if we don’t want to be outrageous……and we’re not interested in having our artists on reality tv.

How do we introduce our artists to the people that still yearn for great songs and performances.

It’s simple.

We give it away.

On our latest accounting – our five Amazon dot com Mishara Music Free Song Samplers have been responsible for……ready for this?

1,029,484 individual song downloads……every single one of them totally free.

It seems so simple to us.

If you give someone a song to introduce them to an artist they may not know about – or one that they’re interested in….but they don’t know how much….they’ll have a chance to find out if they care.

If they don’t – no loss – they wouldn’t have purchased anything from the artist anyway.

If they love what they hear…..they may buy some other songs…..they may tell their friends about the song and artist…..they may buy tickets to a show to see the artist live.

All good things.

So we started doing these free song samplers on Amazon.

Here’s what the five albums look like – we’re very proud to have unique artwork as well:

 

5 Amazon Samplers

 

There are over 50 songs total on the five albums.

Many of the artists are Mishara Music artists.

But some are just friends – we like them and their songs – so we help them get exposure.

Let me make this clear…..we do that for free as well.

You can’t pay to be on our samplers.

You can’t buy your way on.

Our thought process is very simple.

Music we love – people we like.

Here’s a representative review on Amazon from each of the samplers:

Amazon Samplers Reviews 03-31-2014

 

 

Here’s the link to the samplers on Amazon:

 

Enjoy the music.
Discover and be surprised by what you find.
You’re welcome.
And thank you.
Marc

Marc Ratner

Mishara Music

E-mail: marcrescue@gmail.com

Website: www.misharamusic.com

WordPress: www.marcrescue.wordpress.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/marc.ratner

Twitter: www.twitter.com/marcrescue

 

 

20
Apr

A World Apart – literally / Maine Maple Syrup / The best music you haven’t heard & a set list to long for! The Marcrescue blog – life in Maine with an 8 year old

Greetings all,
Been about a month since I last blogged about this and that…..and it seems in that span of days lots has happened.
You may remember that not so long ago…..our world here in Maine was all about ice, snow and cold.
So much so that I now have “Popeye” like arms – more than any other time in my life – because it seemed that every 7 minutes I was hauling, moving, stacking  and then carrying wood upstairs to fuel up the woodstove and keep us warm in this much colder than normal winter.
Add in all that shoveling and I was tightening my belt one more notch.
Time to let it out again.
A few weeks ago I managed to stop to take a photo of the last ice fishing hut on the water near us:
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It’s open water now….hope they got it out in time.
And it means it’s Sunday breakfast time with fresh from the tap pure Maine maple syrup:
IMG_0295
That’s because we spend Maine Maple Day (it happens every March) touring our favorite maple sugar houses and stocking up on lots of syrup  (seriously – if we time it right we get it hot right out of the tap) and various other maple syrup treats.
Hard to believe that it all starts with old buckets on even older trees:
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It’s a party at all our favorite sugar houses and we see friends everywhere we stop.
First off we hit Sparky’s……as soon as you walk into the sugar house you get that unique aroma in the steam filled room from the boiling sap……perhaps my favorite scent of all time:
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Sparky’s also has the best honey around – we buy big jars of his pure raw honey – nothing like it.
Then it’s off to Bradstreet – the most picturesque sugar house you’ll ever see:
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Mark Bradstreet is the friendliest guy in the Maple business and when he’s not tending to the fire he’s smiling and showing off his fresh syrup:
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And then the next moment he’s teaching everyone about how it’s made and about the different types of syrup:
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They’re got live music in the corner:
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And samples of waffles with fresh syrup and the best maple walnut fudge you’ve ever had!
We pick up some “Extra Dark Amber” syrup and fudge at Bradstreet and then off to Simmons & Daughters for more treats:
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The Simmons eldest daughter was running the maple cotton candy machine and once you’ve gone maple cotton candy – you’ll never go back to cane:
Maple Cotton Candy
At Simmons we picked up a half gallon of “Dark Amber” in a mason jar – so hot out of the tap we had to let it cool a bit before we could pick it up……out on the deck back at home…….it looks like the liquid gold it is:
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Then it’s off to our last stop of the day – Kinney’s Sugarhouse….for some specialty maple items (maple cream among the items)…..and oooh the maple donut holes are to die for:
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More live music:
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And the final treat of the day – fresh maple walnut ice cream made with Kinney’s syrup by our friends the Chamberlains from Stone Fox Farm Creamery and served out of their “Mobile Cone”:
IMG_5893
If you’re an ice cream addict like I am……I’m sorry – even though Stone Fox Ice Cream distribution is growing rapidly – it’s still local…..you’ll have to come visit to get some…..and it’s sure worth it.
My favorite “Salted Caramel”
Salted Caramel
And if you come visit – we’ll start with a main course before dessert.
Whadda think?
Burger?
Nah
Mac & Cheese?
Nah
Baked Potato?
Nah
Oh I know…..how about a Lobster Roll?
IMG_1699
Sorry – couldn’t resist – it’s right before dinner time as I write this and I’m hungry……and the Mobile Cone will start hanging out at our local Farmer’s Markets which start shortly – at the same time all the local lobster shacks open for the summer.
Yum.
It’s been a long winter.
So while we’ve been wandering around Maine sampling maple products – two of my friends – who both have new albums out –  been wandering a bit farther afield.
Peter Bradley Adams – who’s latest album “The Mighty Storm” moved up to 81* on the FMQB Non-Comm (Public Music Radio) Album Chart has been touring in all places – Mainland China!
The poster is great – I have no idea what it says but it sure looks cool:
PBA China Tour
And Connor Garvey – who’s new album “Meteors And Beating Hearts” debuted on the same radio chart this week  (a great album and I love the artwork on the cover):
ConnorGarvey-MeteorsAndBeatingHearts1600x1600
Has been traveling almost exactly 1/2 way around the world from Peter.
Connor’s been skiing in the mountains in Alaska:
Connor Garvey Alaska April 2014 - 2
Connor Garvey Alaska April 2014 - 3
That’s hardcore.
Connor’s from Maine…..and I find it interesting that after one of the coldest and snowiest winters we’ve had in a long time – he went off to find MORE snow.
One of the songs on Connor’s new album is called “Old House” and it’s one of my two favorites on the album.
It’s the story of the house that Connor and his girlfriend bought this year and are in the process of restoring.
It’s a love song about the girl and the house (with a very tasty “Dire Straits” feel and guitar for about the last two minutes of the tune) – and the only photo I’ve seen of this house is this one……he did a FB post about the snow he had been shoveling this winter (as we all have):
Connor Driveway
The man loves his snow.
And I’m right there with him on that love of winter and snow.
Because of the severity of the winter this year – many of my friends in Los Angeles have been asking when we were moving back???
Not a chance.
Here’s my thoughts about cold vs hot.
It’s easier to get warm when you’re cold – than cold when you’re hot.
You can always layer on more clothes until you’re warm.
But you can only take so much off when you’re hot…..and the worst part about that…..it seems that too many people go beyond the limit of what they should take off – especially the older they get…..it’s scary sometimes.
By the way – my other favorite song on the Connor Garvey album…..is the last track on the album – a song named “Tattered Shirt”.
Lately I’ve noticed that “Tattered Shirt” and “Old House” have become the best researching tracks on the album and I love that – both creative and original songs.  “Tattered Shirt” is unique in that Connor wrote the song with a female character speaking….and yet sings it totally straight.  I suspect that twist in the lyrics really surprises people to start and captures them and then they find they love the lyrics, the story and the gorgeous melody.
Here’s a listening link on YouTube to “Tattered Shirt”:
And a listening link to “Old House”:
Let’s talk about concerts for a moment.
I’m headed to a Connor concert later this week – looking very forward to it – he’s great live
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…..as a reminder…..here’s his live version of “Irish” that I wrote about on St Patrick’s Day:
A live album “Before The Meteors” – with “Irish” on it – available now at his live shows – will be released shortly on iTunes and Amazon…it’s a companion piece to “Meteors And Beating Hearts”:
ConnorGarvey-BeforetheMeteors1600x1600
I just saw Chris Ross at the Camden Opera House:
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 …..the first time I’ve seen him play since he won this well deserved award:
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Here’s one of his new songs “Drunk Women”  – coming this summer on a new album:
Speaking of new albums and concerts – I get to see Barnaby Bright AND Ken Yates together in concert in NYC on May 8th at Rockwood……and BB are in the studio!!!!!!
Barnaby Studio
Can’t wait to hear the studio version of “Just The Same” – which is perhaps the best adult realistic love song I’ve ever heard.
Check it out on this amazing live 9am performance at WNRN radio in Charlottesville:
And did you ever hear the Ken Yates song off his recent album “twenty-three”…..
4PAN1T
…..that John Mayer blogged about after hearing Ken play it – it’s a masterpiece – “I Don’t Wanna Fall In Love”:
Can’t wait to see Barnaby and Ken together in concert next month.
I feel very fortunate to be able to work with such talented artists.
But music has always been a part of my life.
Have you ever been to www.setlist.fm ?
It’s a wonder – people have posted the setlists for way over a millions concerts from over 60,000 artists and it’s a great way to relive your favorite shows.
Lotta talk about Springsteen lately…..and I thought “Hey is that first show I saw of his up on the website?”
Here’s the story – about a year after I got to LA…..I was a newbie in the record biz and had no contacts to get tickets to special shows in LA….but…..luckily a friend of mine realized that the night after Springsteen was playing what turned out to be a bellweather show at the Roxy in LA…..he was playing in Santa Barbara at UCSB in the gym……and it was easy to get tickets.
So we drove up and saw one of the great shows of all time in my experience.
Now just looking at the setlist and reliving the show – I realized how amazing a concert it was – my memory of it is strong – very strong.
I sure do wish someone would invent a concert time machine so we could all go back and relive those magic moments – especially when the distance of time confirms how truly special those nights were:
This one was truly a night to remember:
Springsteen Setlist 1975
Check out Setlist.fm – it blows me away every time I think to look up a show.
I’ll post something else next time I write – already have something in mind.
One more note about winter.
Now that it’s over – and the snow has disappeared almost all over town…..(not everywhere yet)…..weird things have been spotted coming out of the ground……we’re trying to identify them……some people are convinced they’re alien pods……so if these blog posts suddenly stop coming…..or if they start taking a very different tone…..(for instance….short, timely and totally business like)…..run for your life:
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But then again……we might be safe after all – saved by Mother Nature……so much for Spring and probably Summer……I think we missed them.
Here’s what happened this week:
Snow 04-16-2014
Temperature 04-17-2014
No wonder – I’d packed the snow shovel off to the shed….foolish me.
Marc
PS I posted a lot of great songs up above……if you like what you heard – we give away songs by Peter, Chris, Barnaby and Ken and a bunch of other artists on our free song page at www.misharamusic.com/freesongs
PPS We also have over 50 free songs on our Amazon samplers – easy to download at:
5 Amazon Samplers
People seem to like them:
Amazon Samplers Reviews 03-31-2014
PPPS  Ever wonder how we find all those sugar houses in the back woods of Maine?
Don’t need no GPS…..we have great street signs:
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Marc Ratner

Mishara Music

E-mail: marcrescue@gmail.com

Website: www.misharamusic.com

WordPress: www.marcrescue.wordpress.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/marc.ratner

Twitter: www.twitter.com/marcrescue

 

17
Mar

A Song for St Patrick’s Day / Snowman wars – Winter love in Maine / Life in Maine with an eight year old – the Marcrescue blog

Greetings All,
Welcome to the latest Marc Ratner blog post (this edition and previous letters posted at www.marcrescue.wordpress.com) that of course is supposed to be about the music and artists from Mishara Music (www.misharamusic.com) but always ends up being as much or more about family life in Maine with an 8 year old.
If I were to do chapters for this edition – I’d have to include:
St Patrick’s Day
YouTube Views
Justin Timberlake
Mountain Rescue Association
Winter Box Races
Monopoly
Awards
Snowman Fight
Odds and ends.
How in the world am I ever going to make sense of all that?
I won’t of course.
But it’ll all be here in some form or another.
Let’s start off with St. Patrick’s Day.
Imagine your name is Connor Garvey.
And you look like this – notice the color of his hair:
57
Imagine you’re a singer – songwriter and because of your name you always get asked to play on March 17th – otherwise known as St. Patrick’s Day.
The only problem?
You don’t know a single “Irish” song.
Can make for a difficult evening.
So you write an “Irish Song” and record it at a live concert.
Something to be enjoyed – but especially on St Patrick’s Day (great for morning shows).
Here’s a YouTube link to hear the song:
“Irish Song” is on the live album “Before The Meteors” coming soon to Amazon and iTunes:
ConnorGarvey-BeforetheMeteors1600x1600
It’s a companion piece to Connor’s just released “Meteors And Beating Hearts”:
Connor Garvey Meteors And Beating Hearts Twitter size
Next on the list.
YouTube Views.
There are so many artists with new music these days – it’s almost impossible to figure out who’s making an impact.
And who has time?
Peter Bradley Adams has a new album just out called “The Mighty Storm”.
You might wonder -what kind of audience does Peter have these days – this being his 5th solo album after debuting with eastmountainsouth a decade ago.
The simple answer?
A big one.
A very big one.
Everyone says that more music is listened to on YouTube than anywhere else these days…..
……so what happens if you go to YouTube and type in Peter Bradley Adams?
Turns out people LOVE to make photo and lyric videos out of Peter’s songs – he has an emotional connection with the audience that is amazing.
So type in his name and this is what comes up to start:
PBA YouTube Views
 
The list just keeps going on and on.  Notice the lead track from his last album “Between Us” has OVER TWO MILLION VIEWS and they are hundreds of thousands of other views (including over 100,000 from a live performance at radio station WNRN in Charlottesville).
Not many artists have kind of connection with their audience.
Here’s the link to the “Between Us” video with over 2 million views:
 
What’s next on my chapter list?
Justin Timberlake?
An interesting story – half smart / half crazy.
I always love to surprise my wife with presents that she totally doesn’t expect.
Tickets to Justin Timberlake were one such present – she’s a big fan and I thought that he probably is very entertaining in concert and it’d be a fun thing to do.
I was right:
048
We had a great night.
But this leads into the “crazy” part and the next chapter:
Mountain Rescue Association
For twenty plus years in California I was a member of a mountain search and rescue team.  On a pager 24 hours a day / 7 days a week / 365 days a year.
If the pager went off I was out the door.
Rescue work took lots of training……before joining the rescue team I did a lot of mountaineering and training with the Sierra Club and my rescue team was a part of the Mountain Rescue Association (www.mra.org).
Every year we attended a state wide training with all the other California MRA teams and had to certify in one of three disciplines that rotated every year – rock rescue, search and tracking or snow & ice rescue.
After all those years of training, rescue work and rescue management experience (I was Captain of the team for seven years and spent a term as the Vice – Chair of the Calif Region of the MRA) I now travel back to California to work as an examiner for the testing that’s held the first Saturday of March every year.
This year the Search and Tracking testing was held in Placer County California – (somewhere between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe).
Here’s the crazy part.
Usually I plan in advance – fly to Los Angeles a few days ahead of the test and have some music business meetings before I head to the testing site.
Was just about to click on the “Buy Ticket” button on my computer to get a really inexpensive ticket to fly to LA for my regular trip…..when I thought…..”Oh oh – when’s the Timberlake concert?”.
“Crap!”
Thursday night….in Boston.
The MRA test was Saturday morning in Placer County at 7am.
Think you’re tired?
Here’s what I had to do.
My wife and I drove 4 hours to Boston for the concert.
Had a great time.
Drove 4 hours back to Maine.
Got home at 3:30am
Got up at 6am – left the house at 7am to drive to Portland, ME to catch my first flight to Newark – where I connected to a flight to LA (had to fly in and out of LA)……we got to LA an hour late because of the strong winds from one of the big winter storms blowing across the country…..at 6pm (now 9pm my time in Maine).
Then I proceeded to enjoy that wonderful rush hour traffic on the 405 freeway (the busiest in the country) and finally got to pick up my search gear and leave for the training at 9pm (now midnight East Coast time).
Got the training site at 4:30am after the all night drive (caffeine is my very good friend).
Put the seat back in the car and napped for an hour and a half and then got ready for the testing.
(If you’re counting that’s about 4 hours of sleep in about 36 hours – not counting some dozing on the plane).
Had a great time working the test – I was one of the examiners for the Santa Barbara Search and Rescue Team and they aced the exam.
Here’s the 7am morning meeting for the briefing for the examiners:
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Here’s all the members of the MRA certified teams gathering for the annual photo – (that’s a lot of people that volunteer their time to rescue people in very dangerous situations):
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Here’s the Santa Barbara team command post – planning the search:
Santa Barbara Command Post 2
Another command post photo – notice the snappy vest I get to wear hanging over the chair – such a fashion guy I am:
Santa Barbara Command Post 1
After the testing was over – I headed out for a three hour drive to Carson City, NV to visit my Aunt and Uncle……and get some glorious sleep……ahhhhh.
Then back to LA for a day of meetings and then back to Maine.
Funny thing about being in LA after adjusting to a colder than usual winter in Maine.
As soon as the outside temperature on the rental car dashboard read 64 degrees – I turned the AC on – It was too warm for me!
After the normal 12 hour travel day – from Los Angeles back to Midcoast Maine – I arrived home at about 2am to a much more comfortable temperature – ahhhhh. (Although finding the battery in my car totally dead at midnight in the parking garage at the Portland airport because I left the dome light on was not the most pleasant of return surprises – Doh!):
Temp arriving home
Which leads me to the next chapter “Winter Box Races”.
If you read my last posting you would have seen all the photos (and video!) of our annual US National Toboggan Championships.
A great way for adults to act like kids and have fun.
The kids want their day as well – so last weekend was the 3rd Annual Winter Box Races.
Sort of like the Pinewood Derby other places do in the summer.
Uh uh.
No summer breezes and lazy days for us.
We do cardboard box races on the tubing hill:
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We even had a Jamaican Bobsled:
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Alas – history has a tendency to repeat itself – the Titantic hit the iceberg once again:
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But nonetheless – a great day was had by all!
Monopoly!
Ethan decided one evening a week or so ago that he was ready for the real thing – no more kiddie version of Monopoly – he wanted to play the adult version.
Sure enough – he picked it up quickly….it wasn’t long before he held that exclusive title to “Boardwalk”.
And wouldn’t ya know…….4 houses later…….dad landed where he shouldn’t have:
Monopoly Defeat 02-18-2014
Which I guess is a good thing…..because dad loves his music business company – and as wonderful as it is – it’ll be nice to have a real estate mogul in the family making those big bucks!
But it sure is satisfying when Mishara Music artists get Awards.
Connor Garvey (he of the “Irish Song” above) is currently touring supporting his new album “Meteors And Beating Hearts” and has been attending festivals and winning some nice trophies in the past couple of years.
He won the 2011 Maine Songwriters Association Grand Prize after being nominated against some other great songwriters:
Connor Garvey Maine Songwriters
He also won the songwriting prize at the 2012 Texas Wildflower Music festival:
Connor Garvey Wildflower Winner 2012
Connor was nominated for Male Performer Of The Year at the New England Music Awards a few weeks ago – didn’t win this time but it was a great category of performers:
 Connor Garvey New England Music Awards Nominee 2014 - 2
But then comes another winner – Connor just got voted by the fans as “Most Wanted” for the upcoming 2014 Falcon Ridge Folk Festival:
Connor Garvey Falcon Ridge Most Wanted 2014
Might be worth taking a listen to the above mentioned new album “Meteors And Beating Hearts”.
Here’s a recently posted YouTube Listening Channel where you can hear the entire album:
Tracks I love a lot include “Bright Morning”, “Old House” and “Spark”!
I’m curious to know what other Connor fans like???
Speaking of Awards and specifically those New England Music Awards from a couple weeks ago…..(.I do believe Connor got robbed in his category ask me why and I’ll tell you) but Mishara Music had a great night nonetheless.
Why?
None other than our Chris Ross won in his category:
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And those voters have no idea what’s coming – they haven’t heard the newest songs yet…..Chris just posted three acoustic versions of new songs on YouTube that will be on his next album – due this Spring / Summer and they’re great.
Want to sample them?
 “Burns”
“Easier Said Than Done”
“Drunk Women”
And while I’m talking about new songs – if you haven’t seen these two performances by Barnaby Bright of new tunes that will be on their next album – also due this summer – you ain’t seen / heard nuthin’.
There is no better realistic love song than “Just The Same” and this simple version recorded at 9am at a radio station visit is a perfect rendition.  I’ve heard people gasp out loud at some of the lyrics at shows:
Here’s another new one “Sail” – recorded live in Portland Oregon on tour opening when Barnaby Bright was on tour with Vienna Teng:
Snowman Fight
Every year my wife loves to get outside and make snowmen during those wonderful winter days when we have great snow and bright sun……every year she does something different.
Earlier this year she started winter with the annual traditional snowman:
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But you’d be surprised to know that snowmen are territorial.
If you build them too close together – they’ll start fighting.
How?
With snowballs of course:
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Snowman fight 3 02-21-2014
Snowman fight 02-21-2014
But alas….if you’re a snowman…..no matter who wins the fight….ol’ Sol is always the victor – a good lesson for all of us:
Snowmen Lose
Odds And Ends
So learning the lesson of the snowmen – we make the most of winter – it’s here, it’s cold, it’s fun.
Nothing like a family snowshoe hike:
Family Snowshoe KJR 03-09-2014
On a sunny day in winter:
 Winter Sun
But the snow will be gone soon – at the harbor you can feel the change in the air and that Spring is close by:
 
Spring Is In The Air KJR 03-06-2014
We’ve loved winter – I’ll keep you posted on our Spring adventures in Maine.
My only problem until then……with Spring in the air  it brings rapid changes in weather – warm / cold / warm / cold – we tend to get icy rain and then immediate freezing.
I’ve become an expert in shoveling and clearing snow…..just can’t quite figure out how to “shovel” ice:
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Marc
PS Snowmen and landscape photos by Kim Ratner!
PPS One more music mention – Ken Yates album “twenty-three” continues to garner great airplay all over the country and he continues touring to support the album.  Here’s the YouTube listening channel:
PPPS  Don’t forget – over 50 free songs available on our Mishara Music Amazon.com free song samplers:
5 Amazon Samplers
More free songs on our http://www.misharamusic/freesongs page – and we never require an email address or registration of any kind to download our free songs!
Enjoy and share.
18
Feb

Toboggan Terror (my own w / video) / books / Valentines / Creative 50 – the Marcrescue Blog – Life in Maine with an Eight Year Old

Greetings All,
I can never seem to get these letters written as often as I’d like……if for no more reason lately than it’s hard to find things to write about and take photos when you’re clearing snow an average of 3 hours every third day.
But how good an excuse is that?  More about that later in the letter.
Also as you might have figured out – once I start writing – I have a hard time stopping.
This time I have it figured it out.
You’ll know when I’ve reached the end!
Dad at work 01-19-2014
That photo was taken at the beginning of winter…..since then my snowblower, snow shovel and I have become a good team.
We have two large driveways & a long deck that need to be cleared after every storm and then I head down the road and help out 4 neighbors with some cleanup (I’m the only person in the neighborhood with a snowblower – and some of our neighbors have some issues – medical and otherwise – that won’t allow them to use a shovel themselves).
I feel like I’m 14 years old again…..and going from house to house……shoveling snow……and making my weekly paycheck……I think I made about a buck a house back then……now I do it for free.
It takes three to four hours to get all the snow clearing done if we have a six inch snowfall….and we’ve had a lot of snowfall lately.
So what do we do in-between the snowstorms?
Play in the snow of course.
Ethan loves to sled down the road before the plow comes:
Sledding Before The Plow - 02-05-2014
And you can certainly say about us – “the family that stays together – snowshoes together”:
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We walk up the hill a couple hundred yards and step into a beautiful trail:
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But every February we really look forward to the US National Toboggan Championships which take place at the Camden Snow Bowl – 1 /4 of a mile down the road…..we just walk down the hill:
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This year was the 24th annual Toboggan Championship and as always there are three kinds of participants.
1st – are the serious racers…..they come from all over the country.
Their sleds are customized:
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They win nifty trophies:
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The second group of participants are the ones that compete for the “Best Dressed” prize
Here’s the “Rocket” team:
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The “Eat More Kale” team:
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The “Willy Wonka” team:
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The “Presidents” team:
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The “I Have No Idea What They’re Called” team:
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And the “Royal Danish” team (who usually win the “Best Dressed” trophy each year):
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The third group of participants are teams put together by locals otherwise known as the  “I Can’t Believe My Friends Talked Me Into This” team (I’m second from the left):
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Because we don’t have our own specially made and waxed toboggan – we have to use a town owned sled that hasn’t been waxed since it was built 20 years ago…..we don’t make the finals – it takes a time under 9 seconds to do that……and as you can see “The Sliding Grundels” actually got slower on our second run:
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But we did that run down the ice chute two times – think of the bobsled / skeleton ice track at the Olympics and then dial those expectations down about 1000% and you end up with a shaky wooden slot with hard ice on the bottom – (no temperature problems here – it was about 18 degrees this year as we made the run).
First you have to hike up the hill with your sled:
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Then you approach the load in slot:
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And – zoom – the longest and at the same time the fastest 9 seconds of my life….that’s us passing in front of the timing shed:
Sliding Grundels 02-08-2014
Why can’t you see me?  Because of the way we set up on the toboggan – I’m third on the sled and flat on my back looking directly up at the sky – couldn’t see a thing.
BUT…..the reason we set up that way was so our guy on the front of the sled could take movies of our run on his “GoPro” camera – once in each direction.
So here’s your chance to ride along with us…..the camera facing forward……you can hear our yells:
And now with the camera facing backwards…..at the end of the run you can see me release the legs of the last guy on the sled and he falls off (intentionally):
That’s what we do for fun in the middle of winter.
Speaking of nice runs – Connor Garvey:
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……has just released his second album on Mishara Music titled “Meteors And Beating Hearts” and he’s been having a great time since his last album was released.
He’s been traveling to music festivals all over the country and winning all sorts of prizes.
He started by winning the songwriting Grand Prize at the Maine Songwriters Association in 2012 and then soon afterwards he won the songwriting prize at the Texas Wildflower Festival:
 Connor Garvey Wildflower Winner 2012
He just was voted “Most Wanted” for the 2014 Falcon Ridge Festival:
Connor Garvey Falcon Ridge Most Wanted 2014
And this upcoming Saturday night – he’s up for “Performer Of The Year” (or “Perfromer” I guess – oops) at the New England Music Awards”:
Connor Garvey New England Music Awards Nominee 2014 - 2
When you win all those awards for songwriting – you can bet the album is terrific:
 ConnorGarvey-MeteorsAndBeatingHearts1600x1600
I love “Bright Morning”…..I love “Old House”……I love “Willow”…..I love “Spark”……arghhhh……I love the whole album……here’s a great way to listen to all the songs……a YouTube Listening Channel:
Please enjoy this wonderful album.
Concerning other subjects – let’s talk about books for a moment.
I love to read and always have a stack of books in line to read:
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I just finished the latest book by Michael Connelly:
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I hate it – absolutely hate it – when I finish the newest book by one of my favorite authors.
Why?
Because mostly likely it’ll be a year before their next volume comes out.
I can’t stand the waiting.
I wish they could be more prolific.
Which reminds me of a couple things.
First – like I mentioned above – I have trouble writing a simple letter on any kind of regular schedule..
Second – the 50th anniversary – we just celebrated – of the first American visit by these guys:
The Beatles
(The first visit that is except for George – did you know he visited America the year before to visit his sister who lived in the Midwest….and actually sat in one night with a local band at a club?  Imagine their surprise the next time they saw him…..true story – there’s a book about it.)
But what really got me thinking is that all of the music they recorded was done in a 7 year period – from 1962 to 1969.
All of it.
That would be like one of my favorite authors writing – what? 50 novels in the same timeline?
Amazing.
Prolific.
I can’t imagine anyone else doing something like that.
With one exception.
When I thought about 50 years……I thought – there’s one example of artistry that even exceeds The Beatles.
You can’t imagine?
It’s true.  I looked it up.
50 years of work….by one man – he did all the work all by himself…..that we enjoyed every single day……7 days a week…..365 days a year for 50 years.
With arguably an even bigger impact on society.
Here’s my favorite character of Charles Schulz’ work – you know all the others:
Linus
Take a moment and think about it – he did a Peanuts comic strip every single day for 50 years – 7 days a week – 365 days a year.
Whew.
Let’s talk about Valentines’ for a moment.
We went out for dinner and I got two great gifts.
One from my wife…..who knows me well…..never had a t-shirt from this band before…..so 50 years later:
Beatles TShirt Valentines' Day  02-14-2014
And can’t beat a great “Dragon” drawing from Ethan:
Dragon Valentines' Day 02-14-2014
Ethan got a great present – he got to go see “The Lego Movie” in 3-D:
Lego Movie Valentines' Day 02-14-2014
Dad and Mom enjoyed it too.
One of these days – Dad and Mom will actually go to a non-animated movie…..I think we’ve seen 3 in the last eight years.
Thankfully the new generation of animated movies is pretty great….although I could have done without “Chipwrecked”…..really-could-have-done-without-it.
One other Valentines’ Day note – for our Mishara Music mailing list I put together a list of my favorite “Valentines'” songs from our artists.  Some nice listening – enjoy:
As Connor Garvey says – It All Starts With a “Spark”:
Clarensau titled the song “Love”:
Barnaby Bright has a song for the heartbroken “Made Up Of:
Ken Yates is firm about it – “I Don’t Wanna Fall In Love”:
Chris Ross when asked about his heartbreak will only say that he’s “Mostly Sober”:
Peter Bradley Adams says it’s all “Between Us” (amazing – this video version has over 2 million views):
Clarensau invites you to “Dance With Me” (this song is starting to show up as a “first dance” wedding song – how cool is that!):
Connor Garvey is coming for you driven by the “Western Wind”:
Kat Maslich says it all in “March”:
And lastly as this is a “songs” Valentine – Barmaby Bright wonder what would happen “If I Came Back As A Song”:
Remember you can download free songs by all these artists (including some of the above songs) at:
There are also more free songs on the Amazon.com Mishara Music Free Song Samplers – 54 totally free songs for you to enjoy:
5 Amazon Samplers
Enough of all that – I think now I’ve finally reached the end of this letter.
How do I know?
Remember those great costumes at the Toboggan Championships?
Here’s one more:
 IMG_00000313
It’s definitely time for the “END”:
IMG_00000314
Marc
Marc Ratner

Mishara Music

E-mail: marcrescue@gmail.com

Website: www.misharamusic.com

WordPress: www.marcrescue.wordpress.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/marc.ratner

Twitter: www.twitter.com/marcrescue

 

19
Jan

Maine winter snow & ice photos / life musings and a farm report you must read! Life In Maine With An Eight Year Old – The Marcrescue blog

Greetings,
Welcome to the New Year.
(Special note….I discovered the 100% best guaranteed holiday weight loss plan this season and will be sharing it at the end of the email……guaranteed……absolutely fool proof……you can bet on it!)
A lot of snow & ice has come (and some gone) since I last wrote.
Sure there’s music in my life but there’s so much more.
Let’s discuss the “so much more” for a bit.
Let’s start with a farm.
Not my farm.
Terra Optima Farm
It’s somewhere in Maine…..somewhere near us.
A woman named Cheryl runs this farm and a local farm store.
I’ve never met her…..don’t know exactly where the farm is and have never visited the store (although a visit there is on my “gotta do soon” list).
But I feel like I know Cheryl.
Because I wake up with her every morning.
Cheryl does a “Farm Report” on Facebook every morning – usually around 4:30am.
She’s working earlier than morning dj’s and I would think a lot harder as well.
A lot of people dislike Facebook for being a wasteland of useless information but I have to be thankful in this one instance because it’s a forum for some of the best writing I’ve seen in a long time.
Here’s Cheryl’s post about her Grandfather:
Terra Optima Farm 2
 If you only click on one link in this post then click on this one:
Terra Optima Farm 1
Starting your morning reading Cheryl’s Farm Report will make your day.
And the next time we chat we can discuss Lancelot the rooster who’s in love with Charlotte the pig….and all the other scandals in animal land.
A reality show I finally can be truly interested in.
In other news – you might have heard that we had some cold weather recently.
If I remember correctly – there were days and days when it never got much above zero:
weather
I think it went like this – snowstorm, snowstorm, ice storm, snowstorm, snowstorm.
And the weather never pays attention to your schedule.
We went to NYC for a couple of days – our annual holiday trip.
When we got back – I had to find my car – I think this was it:
IMG_2454
But it was worth losing my car for a while to spend a couple holiday days in NYC.
We covered the top holiday spots this year!
Did you know they have real USPS “Spongebob” mailboxes in the big apple?  Quite cool if you’re 7 years old:
IMG_2225
You can’t beat a before opening hours tour of FAO Schwartz – the world’s coolest toy store (thanks Joanna, Roy, Steve and Anthony for our tour):
FAO NYC 2013
Can’t beat Macy’s windows at Christmastime:
IMG_2270
Inside Macy’s – in the line to see Santa – they have special “Miracle on 34th Street” windows – one of my favorite things from the entire trip:
Macy's 34th windows 2013
And how can you not see the Holiday show at Radio City Music Hall:
Radio City Music Hall 2013
And of course “the tree”:
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Before we knew it we were back on Amtrak leaving the city on our way back to Maine:
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Back in Maine we celebrate the holidays in a more downhome style.
We have a holiday parade – not quite Rosebowl type floats – but big fun and very creative:
Christmas Parade 2013
When the parade is over – virtually the whole town walks up to the library hill:
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We all go there for the town tree lighting!
Lighting The Tree 2013
A great time is had by all.
But even with all the celebration winter can be pretty rough in Maine.
During the cold snap we had – Cheryl was posting on her Farm Report about how tough it was on the farm animals.
I never thought about it – barns aren’t heated.
It was interesting reading.
And the tough times were brought even closer to home to us when a friend called and asked if we’d be able to fill in a for driver for the local “Meals On Wheels” program.
Kim and I immediately said yes – and we both took a day off to deliver 19 meals – during a snow storm on one of the coldest days of the year.
Because of the storm – Ethan’s school was closed – so he came with us and helped us deliver the meals – an important thing to do and a great life lesson for a 7 year old.
Here’s the temp outside as we started our deliveries:
IMG_2591
The way the program works – the recipients receive one hot meal each day Monday through Friday.

No deliveries on the weekends.

The people we delivered to were all elderly – mostly alone, a few couples.
The last delivery we made was to a nice woman who lived in a very tiny house at the end of a long driveway.
She had a bit of trouble walking so Kim asked her if she could help her put the little mini carton of milk in the refrigerator…..and she said……”No, that’s okay…..I think I’ll eat it now thank you”.
A small meal, a tiny milk carton like you used to get in grade school, a small container of chocolate pudding, a roll and some sort of hot meal in a container.
I thought about that on the drive home…..a number of people we delivered to were surprised that we were out in the below zero temperatures in a snow storm – they hadn’t expected to get a delivery that day.  We were told by the program people that if we hadn’t been able to help – the recipients would have been called and told to eat the “emergency” meal in their freezer.
That last nice lady was apparently eating her last hot meal until the following Monday delivery…..on Friday at about 2pm.
In a snowstorm, in minus 5 degree weather in an area that very easily could lose power for many, many hours.
It’s not just the animals that have it tough.
Later that night I watched a movie that brings me to tears every year…..and thought how wonderful it is that we live in a town where people help and look out for each other…..just like Bedford Falls:
It's A Wonderful Life
And I thought about how lucky I am.
Don’t make anywhere near the money I used to make as a VP in the big time record biz in Los Angeles.
But I have a great family, great friends and at a moment’s notice we can say…..”Yeah…we’ll take the day off to delivery some meals on wheels”.
And I’m happy I’ve made the choice to work with music and artists that I love.
Don’t need much else.
Speaking of music.
Loving our two newest albums.
Ken Yates “twenty-three”
4PAN1T
So much I can say about the album but it’s best to just hear the music.
Here’s a YouTube Listening Channel for the entire album – an easy way to listen:
Our newest release is Connor Garvey’s “Meteors And Beating Hearts”
Connor Garvey Meteors And Beating Hearts Twitter size
Here’s the YouTube Listening Channel:
Even better than having this music in our company is having the freedom as an independent music company to give a bunch of it away.  And on our free song pages there’s no nonsense about having to give up an email or register in any way.  Just click, download and enjoy….and share it with anyone you’d like.
Want a free track from Ken Yates? 
One of my favorite tracks on the album is “The One That Got Away”
Want a free track from Connor Garvey?
“Old House” has me mesmerized – I listen to it over and over again!
In fact – want a link to over 50 free tracks from Mishara Music (and some great company friends)?
Head on over to Amazon.com to our five Mishara Music Free Amazon Samplers:
5 Amazon Samplers
Here’s the link:
And let me share two videos that are hints of what’s to come this year.
Chris Ross is writing for his new album and just posted a new live acoustic song on his YouTube Channel (which has over 300,000 views now)….it’s a song called “Burns” and a couple signs of how people are liking it – it almost immediately had over 2000 views and someone has already covered the song and posted their own YouTube video of it……but let’s watch Chris’ version……Taylor Swift has nothing on Chris – he writes way better break up songs:
 youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kMJPij5MpqE
And Barnaby Bright has been on tour all fall and winter and have been playing some new tunes that will be on the new album……here’s a live version of “Sail”:
2014 is going to be a fun year.
Even as dangerous as the extremely cold weather, snow and ice can be it also can be very beautiful.
This year with the peculiar way the snow and ice storms happened we had some especially wonderful winter views:
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But don’t take winter for granted.
For instance – when you’re running out of wood for the woodstove:
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And you realize that you never got all the wood stacked this year because of the snowstorms while you were out of town and it’s time to deal with the……frozen solid wood cave:
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That’s a wood cave made out of snow….more snow….then ice….then two more snow storms….and then some melting and freezing.
Aughhhhhhhhh.
But finally you’re back inside….warming up….and reminded of the wonderful Amtrak trip to NYC:
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And also reminded of the wonderful music you get to work with all year long:
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And of course you’ve got the great birthday card you received from Ethan in early December to remind you that you don’t have to be on top of everything:
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Because you’re not in charge!
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Best of all – no matter how much eggnog you had – how many holiday cookies you ate and how much you have indulged yourself since Thanksgiving……you know you didn’t gain any weight at all…..matter of fact…..you lost quite a few pounds.
You feel really good about it.
As long as…………
You never weigh yourself…………
Except……….
………..On the scale they have at the Natural History Museum in New York City.
The one that gives your weight as if you were standing on the moon:
IMG_2339
29 pounds?
Think I’ll have another cookie.
As Cheryl at Terra Optima Farms says:
“Just Be Happy”.
Marc
29
Nov

The “Day After Thankgiving” what I’m thankful for post. Now that the meal is over – Life in Maine – the Marcrescue blog

Greetings all,
So yesterday I saw all sorts of posts with beautiful roasted turkeys and great meals with family and friends.
They were all terrific.
I thought I’d do a “day after” post that wasn’t so much about the food (with one very important exception!)
So here’s what I happen to be thankful for at the moment.
Having time yesterday to fix a Lego problem:
Thanksgiving legos 11-28-2013
We always love starting the day watching the parade together!
Watching the parade 11-28-2013
And ending the evening with our annual Peanuts viewing….”Charlie Brown – don’t let Lucy fool you again”:
Peanuts Thanksgiving
The woodstove sure is important this time of the year:
First wood stove fire of the year 10-30-2013
It’s winter here – not much snow yet – but everyone is battening down the hatches:
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I very much appreciate that I love what I do as a partner in an independent music company.
Being independent means that we can work with musicians that we like with music that we love (and that is our mission statement – “Music we love – People we like”).
Our newest release is “Meteors And Beating Hearts” by Connor Garvey.
Love the artwork:
Connor Garvey Meteors And Beating Hearts Twitter size
Connor’s a great guy:
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As seriously as he takes his music….he knows how to have fun and not take himself so seriously:
Connor Garvey Dice
And at Mishara Music we get to do things differently.
If we want to give away an unbelievably great song from Connor’s new album – a song called “Old House”…..we can do that…..and we can do it the right way…..you don’t have to give us an email address or register in any way to get the free tune.
What we’re thinking……if you love the song and Connor……you’ll get involved……if you don’t – no email address will ever be useful.
Why make it difficult?
So we don’t!
Connor Garvey Old House Free Song Page
Matter of fact – we like giving away songs so much…..that not only do we give them away on our website:
We really up the game with our five free song samplers on Amazon.com – 54 different free songs by both Mishara Music artists and friends of the label:
5 Amazon Samplers
At last count – before sampler # 5 released a couple weeks ago – we had given away over 890,000 free songs through Amazon.
A great way to sample new music.
Here’s the song listing from new sampler # 5 – a great hour of listening:
Amazon Mishara Music 5 Song List FB size
MisharaMusicSampler5-2
We also make it easy to sample our music.
Don’t you just hate it when people post 30 second clips of their songs?
Who can listen to that?
That’s why we have YouTube Listening Channels for almost all of our albums.
An easy way to listen to the entire album – song by song.
Here’s “Meteors And Beating Hearts”:
(More Listening Channels at the end of the letter).
But enough about music….let’s get back to some more immediately important day after items.
As I mentioned I saw lots and lots of postings on Thanksgiving with plates and plates of food.
But at the end of the day…..here’s what really counts!
Number One – A sink totally free of dishes – (can you believe I finally found a way to include a photo of the kitchen sink in one of these blogs!):
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Number Two – The dishwasher filled and washing:
Dishwasher Thanksgiving 2013
And perhaps the most important thing of all……
Number Three – A huge container of leftover turkey:
Thanksgiving leftovers 2013
But if there’s one thing I’m most thankful for waking up the day after Thanksgiving…..
…..It’s that it’s break week at the Y and thank goodness there was no spinning class at 8:15am this morning.
After what I ate yesterday – this cruel, inhuman instrument of torture would eat me if I had to face it today:
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I’m sure not looking forward to spinning class Monday morning!
Which means I’m very, very thankful for this weekend!
Marc
PS  Wanna hear some great music?
It’s easy – here are a few more YouTube Listening Channel’s:
Here’s Ken Yates album “twenty-three” (our previous newest release that is currently building up a huge amount of radio play):
Ken Yates twenty-three twitter size
I still laugh at how hard it was to get to him to say hello at his show in Portland Maine a few months back….he had some great fans:
Ken Yates fans twitter size
I always keep going back to Chris Ross’ “Halfway To Wonderland”
B009NLADJK
Chris is perhaps the most poetic lyricist I’ve come across in many years and as serious as his songs are – he brings that same poetic creativity to his FB posts like no other – only with a wicked sense of humor:
Chris Ross FB Treasure Hunter
Clarensau – a trio – records songs that emotionally connect with people in a way I haven’t seen before.
I constantly see tweets about “I Would Trade” from the “Until Our Lungs Give” ep and “Dance With Me” from the “This One’s For You” album:
Clarensau twitter comments 11-28-2013
“Until Our Lungs Give” ep:
B007GR7J04
Tthe album “This One’s For You”:
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And lastly let me remind the world about Barnaby Bright – the husband and wife duo – Nathan and Becky Bliss:
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More and more I see comments like these on Twitter:
BB Twitter comments 11-28-2013
Here’s “The Longest Day” album:
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And the “Gravity” ep:
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Enjoy them all – it’s free and easy listening!
15
Nov

Life in Maine with a 7 year old – don’t need much, a little music & a lot of imagination & family – the Marcrescue blog

Greetings all,
Back at the computer writing again.
With lots of photos of all our latest adventures and some new music.
(And note…..many, many of these photos – particularly the artistic ones were taken by my wife Kim.  She’s such a great photographer that I would be crazy not to up the visuals in this blog by not using her photos….but if I continue to do it without giving her credit….I’m in big trouble…..almost as much as I’ll be when she see’s the photos of her coming down the hay bales down the post a bit).
It’s a pretty simple life here in Maine but don’t ever confuse “simple” with “slow”.
Especially when you run an independent music company while your seven year attempts to monopolize all your time and money.
For him life much of the time is all about Legos.
The financial world of a seven year old is simple.
Money exists to buy Legos.
You think Legos are cheap plastic toys?
Only if you don’t have young kids.
I’m sitting here thinking about all that goes into building a house and how expensive it is – but if they were made out of Legos – houses would be way more expensive.
Probably 1000 times more based on how much those little suckers cost.
Of course when you’re a kid – you don’t have house payments, car payments and food comes out of the refrigerator or the pantry so your allowance can all go towards Legos:
Allowance 08-25-2013
But we’re very glad we live in Maine and can try as often as possible to take advantage of our surroundings and get away from the ever commercialization of childhood.
There’s definitely snow in our future…..it’s not here yet but you can see and feel the change in the air…..the leaves are gone. Even without snow it looks like winter now:
Leaves are gone winter is coming 11-08-2013
But before they left we had some wonderful colored leaves in the trees. (Note – it’s hard to capture the scope of the fall leaves in a photograph – so some of these photos use a special filter to bring out the color).
Out the back window, (with some visitors in the lower left of the yard going after the fallen apples from the apple trees):
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On our way back from upstate New York visiting family we took this photo of leaves past their peak in Vermont but wonderful nonetheless:
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Looking out over Hosmer Pond:
Autumn 09-08-2013
One of the advantages of living in New England is being able to visit multiple apple orchards and pick your apples directly from the tree:
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Another great use of the outdoors……and usually a free occupation (outside of the small fee at the local state or federal parks) is hiking which we love to do.
We hiked a great park in upstate NY while visiting family – absolutely visually stunning:
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There’s a great trail no more than 1/2 mile from our house which takes us up “Bald Mountain”:
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One of our other autumn adventures is the corn maze at Beth’s Farm Market.
You really can get lost:
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Who needs expensive amusement parks when a few hay bales will do just fine:
Haybales Beth's Farm Market October 2013
For that matter – you don’t even need the hay bales…..a back yard with some leaves is even better:
Ethan leaves 10-11-2013
One of the great ways of reducing the commercialization of music……is to give it away.
At Mishara Music we do that quite often.
Both on our website and at Amazon.com
At Amazon we just released out 5th free music sampler:
MisharaMusicSampler5-2
I think this one is the best ever.
And it’s doing quite well:
Amazon Mishara Music 5 - 1st Day 4
It’s a combination of Mishara Music artists and friends of the label – some newer unsigned artists and some experienced – Rebecca Loebe – a “Voice” Adam Levine team member a year ago – and very established – our pal Grant-Lee Phillips.
15 tracks by 12 artists:
Amazon Mishara Music 5 Song List
Here’s the link to the sampler on Amazon:
It’s been a while since I worked in radio (my first industry job) but to my ears it’s a pretty great hour of music.
It includes some very new music – specifically I’ll mention the new albums by Ken Yates which just arrived at radio stations around the USA this week and a new album coming from Connor Garvey.
Ken’s free track on the Amazon sampler is “The One That Got Away” which is soooo good and from his album “twenty-three”:
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Of course Ken’s had a wonderful friend already turn a lot of music fans onto his music via the second track on his album “I Don’t Wanna Fall In Love”.
Two years ago when Ken was attending Berklee School Of Music in Boston the guest speaker at one of his classes was none other than John Mayer.
At the end of the class John asked the students to play him songs and flipped over Ken’s tune.
So much so he blogged about it…..on his personal blog and it was then picked up and reblogged by all the John Mayer fan sites.
Ken put up a rough mix of the tune on iTunes and ended up selling thousands of downloads which has given him a great fan base for touring even before this album was released.
Here’s the post that John Mayer wrote about Ken and “I Don’t Wanna Fall In Love”:
Ken Yates - John Mayer 05-05-2013
The album is every bit as good as that first tune that John wrote about and if I mention one track – I’ll have to mention quite a few……hard to choose.
The first track “In The Middle Of Heaven And Here” ends with the most amazing harmonies I’ve heard on record in a long time.  “23” the title track is all about the unknown future. Perhaps the track that might get played the most on radio is “The One That Got Away” – as I mentioned it’s the free track on our Amazon sampler above.  But I also love “New York Rain” and “Get Me Out Of Hollywood”…..a track I take to heart after leaving Los Angeles myself after living there for 35 years and moving about as far away as you can possibly go in the continental US – to the coast of Maine.  Can’t go wrong with this album.
Wanna hear the entire album?  Check out the YouTube listening channel where you can hear every song all the way through:
Connor Garvey’s new album is “Meteors And Beating Hearts” and will be available at iTunes and Amazon on Tuesday November 26th as a “Thanksgiving” present to the world:
ConnorGarvey-MeteorsAndBeatingHearts1600x1600
12 new songs that show why Connor keeps winning the grand prizes at song festivals (2012 Winner Wildflower Festival Performing Songwriter Competition, 2011 Winner Maine Songwriters Association Annual Songwriting Competition). 
There’s no better start than to listen to “Old House” which is the 3rd track on the Amazon sampler and is a stunning love song about a relationship & an old house and ends with an extended guitar piece that will take you right back to Mark Knopfler’s guitar playing with Dire Straits.
Here’s a direct link to the free track on Amazon:
 
Other Mishara Music artist news includes the fun of reading the tweets about Barnaby Bright as they tour the country with Vienna Teng…..you get a sense of “see them once – and you’re hooked”:
Barnaby Bright Twitter 11-11-2013
I still can’t get enough of this new song “Just The Same” that will be on the new album after the first of the year…..if it’s this good in a radio interview at WNRN in Charlottesville at 9am in the morning…..I can just imagine what the finished recording will sound like:

Also from Twitter I keep seeing amazing tweets about Clarensau – and the song that’s starting to show up more and more is “Dance With Me” in connection with weddings:
Clarensau tweets 11-11-2013
If you’re a wedding dj (or if you’re not – it makes no difference) and are always looking for that special song to play at a wedding – check out “Dance With Me”:

Lastly in the music world….I’ve been on the road a bit lately with Chris Ross and the reaction to him live is just amazing.
“Mostly Sober” continues to generate response for Chris that I find to be way beyond what you would expect and shows around Veterans’ Day saw “Your America” bring tears to the eyes of people that have lived that difficult but essential life.
Here’s live house concert versions of both songs.
“Mostly Sober”:
“Your America”:
And of course Chris is better than anyone at documenting his life on Facebook….here are some of my recent favorite posts – you never know what’s going to come next (and it gives you an idea of why his songs are poetic masterpieces):
 Chris Ross FB Yo-Yo's
Chris Ross FB Raccoon
Chris Ross FB Salsa
And lastly about Chris…..on one of our recent trips I happened to glance at floor of his car by the right back seat and it says everything about being a traveling musician on the road……such a romantic life…..this is just how I found it:
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It really sparks your imagination.
Which I think is important for adults these days and if you’re seven years old and your parents can keep you from being glued to tv or video games or the computer….there’s no telling what you might come up with.
Like a birthday party for a stuffed animal with cards (mom and dad also had to make a card):
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Presents for Fireball – made out of dad’s empty cd boxes:
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And of course all of Fireball’s friends got together for the party:
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The guest of honor:
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And what family doesn’t need their own newspaper….or “nespaper” – he’s not shy about raising money for those Legos:
Nespapers For Sale 09-15-2013
Family days are the best in Maine.
Whether it’s time to get our pumpkins for carving for Halloween:
 Pumpkins 10-06-2013
Which we bring to the town library for “Pumpkin Night” on the library steps:
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And after a hard day’s apple picking you get to have a candy apple:
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And the whole town turns out for a special showing of a classic film at our old time movie theatre that was built in 1923 (and totally restored now) and showed the film when it was new:
Wizard Of Oz line 10-20-2013
Wizard Of Oz 10-20-2013
You can’t beat Halloween though……when you get to be an X-Wing fighter pilot:
X-Wing fighter pilot 10-31-2013
Which is made even better because Mom has a friend who can knit the coolest hats:
Halloween selfie 2013
Speaking of caps……I had a great time recently pulling out my four favorite baseball caps…..one for each series win:
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It’s been a classic fall for sure.
We don’t need much in Maine…..as long as we have each other.
Surprise someone – hug them – they’ll love it.
Marc