A year of "cocooning" and metamorphosis inspired us to redesign the E-Zine. We hope you find it easy to read, and are inspired to do so. More than ever, thank you for allowing us to stay in touch, as we plan for whatever awaits in the post-pandemic world. With open hands, and open heart....
• Next Saturday, Feb. 20th at 7:30pm Eastern - Andrew livestreams TO and through the Vanilla Bean Cafe in Pomfret CT. Go to the Bean for socially-distanced dinner and dessert and watch the show, or tune in from anywhere in the world. Info & tickets: http://tix.musae.me/vanillabean3
• More March & April concerts still getting finalized, but all going up shortly on the Tour page at the website.
• We have Virginia Commission for the Arts funding available for virtual performances for any qualifying in-Commonwealth non-profit, school, library or government entity. Presenters can get reimbursed up to 50% of our fee for any concert or program delivered virtually or in person. A concert at your arts center, "Telling America's Stories in Song" interactive workshop for your local elementary school, or the genealogical "edu-tainment" of Andrew's find-your-family stories workshop "The Gift in Our Genes" - email us and we'll gladly help make it happen.
Happy Valentine's Day,
I hope this first E-Zine of the new decade finds you well and feeling loved. I won't try to tell you that this past year hasn't been a rough patch for most of us. The world has changed, but our human needs for connection and affection have not. One of my biggest gratitudes is that it's not 1918 - our technology allows us to stay connected face to face with loved ones, and for us to participate in some way in the many regular rituals of life as well as entertainment and education. I hope that there have been silver "onlinings" for you and yours.
That said, I ran out of gas after the holidays, and since my performing schedule has been largely self-imposed, I took a break. Hibernation and healing, emotionally as well as physically dealing with some minor skin cancer issues. I've written about both on the Blog if you'd like to read more.
It's time to get back to work, and I'm excited to invite you to my next livestream concert next Saturday Feb. 20th courtesy of one of my favorite concert venues, the Vanilla Bean Cafe in northeastern CT. I've done a show there during my spring tour every year since 1994. They are open for limited dining if you live nearby, but you can watch from anywhere in the world - although you'll have to provide your own dessert!
In the bigger picture though, I'm struggling mightily with what "getting back to work" means for a small-scale "independent" artist like me. Truthfully, what I plan matters less than what my audiences feel comfortable doing. I'm grateful that the world has learned how to work Zoom and enjoy livestream events, because unless we invent a teleporter or flying saucer I will someday be too old to drive 35,000 miles a year and still be able to play guitar at the end of each day's drive.
My first step in planning this next year or five is to get some sense of where my audience is, and how I might meet them there. I'd love to start planning my touring schedule again for the post-pandemic, hopefully this autumn.
That also means taking stock of what we've learned and what we've lost; I wrote a separate post on that, and for both fellow artists and audience alike I'd love to know your thoughts. With basically every performing artist sidelined from stages for the past year, we're all chomping at the bit to be with you in person as soon as it's safe. That means there will be intense competition for your attention and for those opportunities, and there are a lot less venues to host us. When might you feel comfortable going to a house concert or small theater again?
Thanks for reading, and if you're inclined for sharing your thoughts here or on the Blog. Know that someone loves you. Know that I am very grateful to stay connected with you this way, and I'm looking forward to seeing you soon - perhaps on my computer screen, but hopefully in person sometime this year too.
Happy Valentine's Day. May the dessert be as sweet as the company you keep.
A cloudy late-day walk on our gravel roads sometimes leads to the most unexpected magic. ©Andrew McKnight
For more of Andrew's photos, please follow @andrewmcknightmusic on Instagram.
Andrew is a proud Endorsing Artist for Fairbuilt Guitars & Elixir Strings, and member of the Virginia Commission for the Arts Touring Artist Directory and the Listening Room Network.