You sure this is how Richie Havens got famous? Part VI: The nice thing about networking


Out of nowhere, life has gone and got interesting. In a flurry. On account of that oft-cited, word-of-mouth aspect of the business called networking. It’s kind of a pinball effect. You bump into one person who bumps in somebody who bumps into somebody else and so on down the line. Now, if you’ve made a favorable impression, you’re spoken of fairly well and the potential for opportunities materializes. If you’re badmouthed, your name quickly becomes mud and doors shut in your face faster than grain can go through a goose. Let’s hear it, ladies and gentlemen, for leaving a favorable impression on folk of consequence you barely even know.

Noted singer-songsmith MJ Kroll is having me out to perform on a bill with Jeffrey James Sutherland and Tony Ortiz with Adena at School of the Wise II in Chanhassen. Unquestionably, it’s the result of Jazzy J having put a bug in her ear (see, I met him and Patti Horan while catching Rasta bard David Daniels at Barfly in Minneapolis). School of the Wise II will be a timely tune-up for the long delayed return to Winterland Studios this month so I finally can finish recording Angels Don’t Really Fly, my EP project that recently got a fresh financial shot in the arm. School of the Wise II will also be—I almost fell off the floor with this one—my debut on YouTube. Turns out when you do that particular showcase, it’s videotaped. And as part of the proceedings some songs from your performance are captured for posterity and rendered accessible for all the Internet viewing world to peruse. Yippee. Uh, I mean, cool, man. Real cool.

Meanwhile, “Pretty Girl,” “Lady Midnight,” and “End It All Over Again” are in rotation at Internet outlet Twin Cities Radio, which is Jazzy J’s station. As well, Patti Horan has offered to air my music at her shop Radio Rock One, also an Internet radio station. How about that Internet, hunh? Sure beats trying to get on Amateur Night at the Apollo or wrangle an audition for Dick Clark’s American Bandstand.

On the horizon, I’ve booked a guest appearance on Spectator (MTN Channel 17) with Bill Borea in advance of playing January 7th at Corner Coffee over in Minneapolis’s Warehouse District (that’s a Friday at 8 p.m., in case you’ve got your calendar handy). It’s actually Dwight Hobbes featuring Mark Dorshak—and the cat plays outrageously tasty guitar.

To think, five months ago, I didn’t even have my own instrument, much less a gig to play (on a gorgeous Ovation acoustic Dorshak sold me). Now, thanks to the kindness of strangers, well, like I said, life has got fairly interesting.