2015 went by in a blur of renewed writing, lots of teaching, an apartment move, and some really great shows. Here's the highlight reel for music I was privileged to make in 2015:
'Dallas Does' shows:
We've been involved with Opening Bell Coffee's series of "Dallas Does" cover shows since at least 2012, and the very first show we did was "Dallas does the Beatles." Well, this year started with another great "Dallas Does the Beatles" show in January. In March, we had fun with "Dallas Does Disney," where I played the fun number you'll hear below.
But my hands-down favorite was the show I'd been begging for us to do for years: "Dallas Does Led Zeppelin." Alas! I have no photographic evidence from that show -- only lovely memories of rocking out to "Immigrant Song" and blissing out to "Going to California." It was so much fun! The closest approximation I can give you is this video of us doing "Ramble On" at a concert in 2014.
Last spring a colleague of mine contacted me about helping her with a new musical project she was putting together: a collection of African American spirituals and folk-songs alongside original pieces that bridged the gap between various musical cultures in the hopes of bridging gaps between people. We spent time arranging, practicing, and recording, and you can be part of some of the fruit of that labor here, by joining in a mass collaboration on the new song "Across the Bridge."
Adventures in Academia
A few of my favorite musical experiences this year were part of higher education. I performed and discussed Bob Dylan songs for an academic symposium and I taught my first songwriting class. -- I even wrote a song to teach my students song form:
Then in November, I played the best concert I've ever been able to play. As part of DBU's faculty recital series, I presented an evening of songs all inspired by literature. (Videos coming soon!) It was so much fun to hear songs based on Shakespeare, Chekov, and the Bible brought to life in new ways, and my band killed it despite having to traverse musical styles from jazz to Broadway to folk-rock. It was truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
In addition to these and other performance and collaboration opportunities, 2015 was a time of renewed writing for me, and I hope you'll hear the results of that writing frenzy in a new recording project for 2016. In the meantime, thanks for listening, and have a happy New Year!