Sunday, October 7, was a busy day. I arose at about 5:30 and left Manhattan around 6:30. I arrived at my cousin’s house about 8. Holly fried me up a nice breakfast, and we enjoyed one last visit before I shoved off around 9 a.m., headed for Auburn, NY. My concert was scheduled to begin at 4, but I had agreed to drop by Syracuse and pick up my host and opening act, Larry Hoyt. Larry and I continued on to Auburn and arrived at the Auburn Pubic Theater at 3 – right on time! The Auburn Public Theater is part of an ongoing effort to bring arts and culture to downtown Auburn, and they are making a gallant effort. Our afternoon concert was well-received by another small but appreciative audience. A pleasant surprise was the unexpected presence of my friends from Elkins, WV, Mary and Glen Smakula. I also enjoyed the opening set by Larry.
Larry, Mary and Glen joined me for a nice dinner of Italian food across the street at a place called Bambino’s. Afterwards, Larry and I drove to the studios of WCNY radio where I was a guest on Bill Knowlton’s radio show, Bluegrass Ramble. Bill has been on the air with this program for 40 years, and he has a large and loyal audience. It was fund-raising season, so volunteers manned the phones while I sang a couple of songs.
We drove back to Larry’s house following the radio show. I stayed up till midnight watching a few innings of the American League playoff game between the Yankees and Orioles. The Yankees broke it open with five in the ninth. It felt good to finally lie down and get some rest!
Monday I drove to Buffalo – 440 miles from New York City. You know, New York is a big state! It’s a beautiful state, too, especially this time of year. Pictures don’t do justice to the magnificent fall colors.
I was in Buffalo to rehearse for the Friday night show at the Sportsmen’s Tavern, where I will be appearing with the Stone Country Band. I met the fellows from the band next door to the club, where owner Dwane has a small studio. The band was already familiar with my material from some disks and files I had sent ahead. We practiced for three hours without a break. They played great! I’m really looking forward to putting this on the stage!
I stayed in Niagara Falls, where the rooms are cheaper. I spent some time at the falls on Tuesday before getting back on the road. What a spectacular sight, as well as the sounds and the smells and the slight rumbling you feel near the falls! I didn’t realize that the falls are also the oldest state park in the U.S. – the things you learn out here on the highway… I took a bunch of pictures. Who could resist?
I left the falls behind and drove to Rochester on Tuesday afternoon. I arrived at my friend Richard Newman’s house and stayed with him and his wife, Amy. Wonderful people! Richard is a woodworker and banjo maker, Amy is a teacher. I appreciated their hospitality.
Wednesday morning I was the guest of Scott Regan on WRUR radio. We had a good visit, I sang a few songs and plugged my upcoming gigs. Wednesday evening I led a yodeling workshop at Bernunzio’s Uptown Music in downtown Rochester. What an amazing store! He’s got one of everything and two of everything else! I had a sterling bunch of yodelers for my workshop, and they raised the roof with their yodel-ay-ee-hooos.
The next few days will be pretty full. I do a solo show tonight, Thursday, October 11 (10-11-12!) at Abilene in Rochester, have the show with the Stone Country Band in Buffalo on Friday, back to Syracuse on Saturday, Ithaca on Sunday, then an epic drive to Louisiana on Monday and Tuesday. I will blog again, but I can’t say when!