I’m happy to say that 2013 was even better than 2012. As a performer I’ve had the opportunity to play over 160 shows this year, both with my main projects and as a guest with some of my favorite Seattle bands and musicians. As a teacher I’ve continued my work with schools all over the city as well as with my own students, giving me a chance to make music and have a great time with over 50 kids aged 6 – 60. I got into grant writing, I traveled the coast and border states, and my chickens are still alive. Yep, a good year!
A goal for 2013 was finding a way outside of shows and merch sales to fund making the music I wanted to make. To that end I applied for 4Culture’s Arts Project Grant and was fortunate to be awarded $5,500, money I used to record a full-length album of original music with Hardcoretet that will be out in early 2014. The band also presented clinics at Central Washington University, Highline Community College, and Chief Sealth International High School, and started a monthly residency at Seamonster Lounge.
McTuff also found some unconventional funding, gathering $8,000 in support from fans, friends, and family with our Kickstarter campaign. In October the band released a full-length album of originals, Volume 3 – The Root, along with shows in Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Idaho, and Montana. We also shot a 45-minute set for a new TV show called Band in Seattle, a show that features performances from Seattle bands (duh) along with interviews with the band members (our episode airs February 22nd at 11pm on channel 11!). Our Tuesday nights at Seamonster have been a regular source of smiles and surprises, with guests like Allen Stone, Mycle Wastman, and Jeff Coffin of the Dave Matthews Band dropping in to play with the band.
I’m lucky enough to get to work and play with the best musicianship Seattle has to offer. Joe Doria, Andy Coe, Skerik, Art Brown, Aaron Otheim, Tim Carey, Tim Kennedy (I GOT TO PLAY WITH RICHIE ALDENTE!), Ian Sheridan, Evan Flory-Barnes, Jacques Willis, Nathan Vetter, Farko Dosumov, Mark Mattrey, Annie Jantzer, and the many others I made music with this year all sit comfortably at the highest levels of what they do. If you have a chance to see any of them in action, take it and give them a lot of money.
Music is hard. The music business is hard. Releasing albums, planning tours, working the press, and promoting shows are all necessary elements of successful projects. That said, there’s only so much time in the day and I have to A) write and perform and B) pay my mortgage before I can even think about that stuff. This year will be about navigating that world and finding some reliable and energetic partners to help.
Another year down, hopefully a few more left before I fully retreat into my flat-screen/Netflix/HBOGO/giant-couch/memory-foam/Proletariat-pizza cocoon. Thank you all for the support and encouragement, I’ll see you around.