Dear family and friends of barleycove,
Yes, it's been six years, almost seven (but does 2020 even count), since we released our last album! Our second album will be released on January 6, 2021!! We've overcome some hardships, but really, who hasn't. Yet, I guess we are a testimony to the magic of music and the importance of the need to be creative. Barleycove was created with the vision that the players may change, and we had some incredible new players for this album.
As Dave Chapelle might say, I have a "brittle spirit". After our first album, I got some feedback from some prominent folks. I was told "age is a factor...it's a numbers game". I was told, "rock and roll is dead". I was disheartened a bit. Then, I fell, literally, I fell and my elbow and wrist took the blow so that my teeth would stay in tact as I hit the pavement one day. I was given an x-ray and told nothing was broken, just a sprain. Well, my arm healed crooked. I could not straighten it. I was disheartened. Playing the piano or guitar just didn't feel right and it hurt. I went for further diagnosis, and it turns out my elbow had been broken and healed incorrectly. I was looking at almost a year of physical therapy.
Fortunately, during these darker days, Edwin McCain and Maia Sharp were offering a songwriting class at the Peace Center. I decided to further delve into the craft and learn from two of my musical heroes. It kept me going and a community of songwriters developed. It was there I met L.C. Branch, who really came through to become a dear friend and an integral part of barleycove for this album. Another talented musician and workshop friend, Lindsay Brazell, lends her vocals to help harmonize. Maia and I continued to meet for classes online through the pandemic, and she also graced her talents to a couple of songs on this album. These six years turned out to be magnificent from a creative point of view, and also a reminder that the beauty of a messy mosaic may not be seen until the final project is revealed.
So, in the end, I create because it means I am still alive. Create in whatever way that makes you feel alive. For so many of us, music is that part of us that makes us feel alive. So, even if you can not sing or play an instrument, continue to help music with the gifts you have. Help your favorite band with fan art, promote the heck out of them on any website you use frequently, tune into their livestream, be a positive troll with those youTube comments, or add your favorite artists to a playlist. Use your creative fire to help the artists and music you love. Or finally pick up that guitar, write down that poem, and find a community that will support you to develop your craft. You are never too old!
Sending love to all in 2021,