Greetings from my couch (yep, it’s still here and still comfortable). We had a whirlwind trip to Red River, NM for the 2nd Annual Texas Red River Songwriters’ Festival. This was momentous because “2nd annual” means the first one worked well enough to do it again. Last year we had a small but mighty crowd and THIS year the festival attendance increased 7-fold. That’s not bad for Year Two.
This festival was the brainchild of my friend and fabulous songwriter Drew Kennedy, and he purposefully added the apostrophe at the end of Songwriters’ because the artists own the festival, which is cool and pretty dang unheard of in festival land. I’m so glad he asked Susan to be in on Year One, and this year I got to play a set at the “Wine and Music of New Mexico” wine-tasting event. Josh Grider is from Las Cruces and I represented ABQ. Maybe the only time I have gotten a gig BECAUSE I am a New Mexican.
All of the writers are awesome musicians, thinkers, and most of all…great people. We heard music from Walt Wilkins, Brandy Zdan, Kelly Mickwee, Mike Addington, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Josh, Drew, and Susan all weekend long.
Susan’s birthday was smack in the middle of the festival so I got to join all the awesome folks onstage for our improvised but might I say very fun tribute to Susan. We played “Happiest When I’m Moving” which is a WAY better song than “Happy Birthday” ANY DAY (even on your birthday).
Brandy Zdan is seriously awesome, y’all. She’s from Canada and now she lives in Texas and how she doesn’t melt in the summer, I don’t know, but her songs are awesome and her guitar playing is divine.
Walt and Tina Wilkins are not only two of the finest musicians I know but the coolest people. They sang at Saturday morning breakfast and now breakfast will never be the same.
Kelly and Brandy tore it up with a Beatles tune…
And the Birthday Suz delivered awesome music all weekend long…made even better by the snowy backdrop. It’s 80 degrees in San Marcos today. I miss New Mexico.
Make plans for next year’s 3rd Annual…this thing might explode, and you might want to be in on it early before we start doing some crazy lottery system for wristbands because demand exceeds space. Red River is a small town, you know!