Rad Stuff

9 Sep

Sometimes the amount of cool stuff I have on my radar makes it impossible to fit into one Facebook post, and thus another “Rad Stuff” post is born.  I have some really great friends putting out records this week.  Czech it:


The Belle Sounds – Blackstone

This band is amazing. Every time I see them live I am awash in amazing harmonies, cool pop hooks, and great writing. Also, they are the KINDEST people, which makes it even better. This is the first Belle Sounds album my good friend Emily Shirley is on, and I am so glad for her. Go team, go! BUY IT.

Drew Kennedy – Sad Songs Happily Played
There’s a cool concert series in League City, TX called the San Benave Series, and Drew did a show there. It was an amazing show. He didn’t know they were recording it, and he was pleased when he found out they had. So pleased, he’s releasing the show! Drew is aces at storytelling and of course his songs are articulate, smart, and singable (which is the best combo). BUY IT.


I had a lot of time to read in the car this trip. One book that particularly sucked me in because we spent a lot of time in Northern New Mexico, Eastern Colorado, and Western Kansas was “The Worst Hard Time” about the Dust Bowl. This is the real story of the Dust Bowl, not the glossed over “it stopped raining and there was dirt everywhere” grade school version. Short version: humans messing up the environment made more problems for humans. Imagine that. READ IT.

Taylor Swift is this month’s Rolling Stone cover story. I think she’s great. You get to make your own decision.

Another Missive

28 Aug

Hello from fabulous Cedaredge, CO! I like this town. We played at Starr’s Guitars last night and it was hard not to once again spend all my money on an instrument. Luckily I kept it in my wallet (but did acquire a cool strap for the Taylor I bought in Bozeman). I’ve been trying to sneak in little practice sessions when I can because my CD Release Show at Strange Brew in Austin will be here before I know it. Hey, did I mention there’s a CD Release at Strange Brew in Austin? September 11, 2014! 8 PM! ALL THE SPECIAL GUESTS! More on that in another post.

The weekend was spent in Kansas, a state I consider my half homeland. My grandparents lived in Rush Center (approximately: the middle of nowhere) for years and I spent many a family trip there as a kid. My aunt and uncle came over to Garden City to the Tumbleweed Festival to see us which was awesome. I don’t see family near as much as I want and it’s always a treat when we cross paths. Or when they drive to see us play!

Steamboat Springs, CO started off nicely. We had a double rainbow to enjoy.

Then some jerk took off the driver’s side mirror while we were parked on the street and didn’t leave a note. I still suspect a city bus because our mirrors are high. I’m looking at you, Steamboat Springs.

I got to camp out in a little cabin here in Cedaredge last night. I’ve also been reading a book about the Dust Bowl, so this photo by Susan made me feel like a settler, except settlers couldn’t hop in a Sprinter and drive away.

Notes from the Road

26 Aug

It’s been a while!  We’ve been trucking all over the Western United States (well, about 5 of them, anyway).  Sometimes there’s no internet in these lovely places.  Sometimes AT&T decides you’ve used too much off network data and bricks your phone.  Luckily, we’re back in AT&T radius I guess.  I have a phone and thanks to some kind hosts, I have wifi!

We’ve had a grand time on this trip…fun gigs and some really lovely scenery.

Some highlights…

My friend Lara is Albuquerque made this amazing cake for my EP release in my hometown. It tasted as good as it looks. Open wide!

Don Richmond joined Susan for a great show in Del Norte, CO. These two are my favorites and together…whoa! We get to join Don again in Alamosa, CO for a show on Labor Day.

Did I mention the scenery? We’ve seen some grand things in New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, and yes…Kansas.

We played Girls’ Night Out in Saratoga, Wyoming…and I’m still now sure why but we had to go all the way to Wyoming to hear this great duo named Whippoorwill…because they’re from Austin. I’m not one for late night post-show jams but hanging out with these girls made my weekend. So glad we live in the same state!

That’s it from Glenn and Lynn’s awesome dining room table in Pueblo, CO. Two more weeks with some pretty fun shows and we are back home. More scenery awaits!


8 Aug

Stuff that shouldn’t go together:

This is cool. I read Lone Star Music Magazine all the time, and they reviewed the new EP in the latest issue. Thanks to DC Bloom for a thoughtful piece!

Buy the EP here on Bandcamp or iTunes!

Release Week

24 Jul

I feel like I have “released” this EP 402,029 times already, but July 15th was the date and I played a couple of shows last week to celebrate.

My friends Anna Harris and Katie Lessley joined me at Superfly Records in San Marcos for a set. Playing in a real record store is about as inspirational as you can get, and we had ourselves a grand time. Then I hustled myself on out of there before I blew my rent money on new albums.

Anna and some sweet violin at Superfly’s

Katie sangin’ a song we wrote!

Another neat thing, at the house concert this weekend…my friends James and Sandy surprised me with LIFESIZED ALBUM ARTWORK. A giant mouth with legs that SWING! And a canvas version of the EP cover. Amazing. These WILL be showing up in things, so watch for them. I am in awe of these folks’ talent and patience…because that mouth has a lot of lines in it!

(Thanks to Spring and Kelly for these photos cuz I stole ‘em).

iTunes and Rad Stuff

24 Jul

Ok, we’re finally up on iTunes…here is the link if you like to download musics on lovely Apple devices with little to no effort on your part.

The cool news is this little record is currently (as of this typing) #59 on the iTunes singer-songwriter chart. This means at least one person has purchased it on iTunes, haha. No really, that’s kinda neat. I’ve never charted anything except chord charts and pie graphs in college.

With that said, I haven’t done a List of Rad Stuff in a while. So why don’t we?

Good Read
The Weird, Scary, and Ingenious Brain of Maria Bamford. – Maria is my favorite comedian, bar none. She’s brilliant. She’s charming, smart, and makes you uncomfortable…all the things comedy should be. I saw her perform live once and my stomach hurt the next day from laughing so hard. Read this.

Good Listen
Johnnyswim. This is the best new band I’ve heard since…a while. A married duo, to boot. They are adorable. They folk it up like it’s their job, but with plenty of soul mixed in. This song Diamonds is the one that hooked me. Look at that strum!

Good Look

I got to go see Georgia O’Keeffe’s Museum again in Santa Fe because it is one of my Top Ten Places On the Planet. They do a really good job of rotating exhibits there, so I’ve never seen the same batch of paintings twice. The fact that I can walk right up to this painting and see the brush strokes on the canvas blows my mind.

Good Pledge

I love me some Lucy Kaplanksy. She was the FIRST folk singer I ever saw live in the flesh. I was in high school. She plays guitar like she’s on fire. It caused a revelation. She’s doing a Kickstarter project with Richard Shindell and they’ve blown past their goal of $40,000. Why? Because it’s going to be fantastic.

Release Day!

15 Jul

Happy Release Day! I feel like I have released this EP several times already, but this is the real official everywhere release day. You can download or purchase a hard copy CD at http://janapochop.bandcamp.com! It should be up on iTunes soon – I told them this was the day, anyway. I’m not sure how much iTunes listens. We shall see – but…SOON!

I’m working on some real video ideas for these songs, but in the meantime, here’s a Youtube stream of Middle of My Chest should you want to…you know…send it to everyone you know!

Good Musical Moments

30 Jun

I’m supposed to be packing for a real honest to goodness vacation I am taking this week to see a bunch of my family and see my awesome niece, Cathy, get married to a cool dude named Matt.  In Wisconsin.  After I fly to Albuquerque and collect my mom.  And then we drive to Minnesota to get my sister.  And THEN Wisconsin.  I haven’t family road tripped or been to the Midwest in eons.  BRING IT.

So instead of packing I’m reading old blog posts and remembering that I have had some amazing musical experiences over the years.  I consider myself fortunate to have seen and met some of my favorites…so why not recap?  That’s why I run this personal scrapbook of a blog anyway.

No order, just as they pop up in my brain, dates might be wrong…and these are non-work related concerts. I could write a book about all the cool stuff I’ve seen working with the people I work with…a different day.

Tori Amos
– Albuquerque 2005…my friend Laura was wearing a Tori shirt so some tour manager type dude gave us front row seats. It was amazing.

– SXSW 2009…my friend Elizabeth had given me a wristband for SXSW that year and we went to La Zona Rosa to see Tori debut tracks from The Beekeeper. Perez Hilton introduced her…weird.

Imogen Heap
– Austin 2006…Imogen played La Zona Rosa. I went by myself and the show BLEW MY MIND. I went again a year or two later and got to meet her outside her tour bus. So lovely, so British. She signed my iPhone case (it’s all I had) and it promptly rubbed off in a week.

Mary Chapin Carpenter
– I’ve seen MCC a lot. I’ve seen her play in Santa Fe, Denver, San Francisco, Atlanta, and Austin among others. I met her last fall. It was one of the best days ever. Her music has made me travel and I am forever grateful. The photo above is of MCC and Shawn Colvin at Mountain Winery in Saratoga, CA.

Indigo Girls
– Kerrville Folk Festival 2009. I had a backstage pass and I used it when the Indigo Girls were playing. Terri Hendrix played a couple of songs with them and she introduced me to Amy Ray. I said nothing of importance because I couldn’t think, but I remember Amy was eating a peanut butter sandwich before playing. Superfood of folk?

– I still maintain these girls put out some of the smartest country pop of the 2000’s. They just haven’t recorded in a while…I hope they do again soon. I met them at a casino in Ruidoso, NM in 2005, because casinos in New Mexico get the touring acts for some reason.

Lady Gaga
– I’ve seen her stadium show twice over the years, and then I got to see Gaga close up at SXSW this year. Amazing. Roasting on a spit and all.

Kathleen Edwards
– One of my favorite writers period. My friend Ben and I went to see her in Santa Fe in 2004 or so when we were in college, in some bar. I don’t even remember where. We had seen her on Letterman the year before and were hooked. I haven’t had the chance to see her since but she’s put out some of my all time favorite albums.

Rose Cousins

– Folk Alliance 2011. The cool thing about the Folk Alliance gatherings is you see people from all over play acoustic sets in hotel rooms for 3 days. Rose has always been a favorite but she doesn’t make it to Texas much, so I followed her around (from a distance, non-creepily) at Folk Alliance. Gold.

Haim was about to blow up when I saw them at SXSW 2013 in a bar on 4th street. I was right in front of the stage and Este knocked her mic stand onto my head. Totally rock and roll.

Doing this list makes me want to buy tickets to more shows…I’ll be adding Fleetwood Mac to this list later this year. So excited!

Here’s a track from the new EP up on the Youtubes, because that’s how we all listen to music and stuff these days.

I just posted my new bio, too. Susan Gibson so kindly and brilliantly wrote it. I’ve written probably…8 people’s bios in the past year and could NOT stand writing my own. It’s too hard. Probably a good exercise for everyone to attempt to do as a growth technique, but quite frankly I needed it for my one sheet pronto. Gibson delivered. Read it here.