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Feeling A Little Horse

Still need Christmas gifts? Everybody needs a calendar!

Rodney Bursiel is one of the best wildlife photographers in the world. Rodney made three trips to Camargue, France to photograph the oldest breed of horses in the world, and asked me to write poetry for his pictures. What an honor! 

There are only 100 and they are going fast. If you order 5, Rodney will throw in a free 8x10. Order 10, you’ll get two 8x10s. 

https://rodneybursielphotography.com/product/2019-horses-of-camargue-calendar/

 ***************

Thanks so much for your support for our new record, Jonathan Byrd & The Pickup Cowboys. You can order copies for your friends and family and I’ll send them out this week. http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/pickup-cowboy

I’ve also added more sizes to our t-shirt stock. In particular, if you tried to order a men’s large or x-large, I have a few back in stock. Again, we’ll send orders off this week.

***************

We’re playing at The Kraken every Wednesday from 7-10pm for the next twenty years, unless I tell you otherwise. :)

Jan 10 Thu
Muddy Creek Cafe And Music Hall
Winston-salem, NC

Feb 1 Fri
Society Garden
Macon, GA

Feb 2 Sat
TOL Coffeehouse
Columbia, SC

Feb 10 Sun
The Alleghany Arts Council for The Beat Goes On
Sparta, NC

Your fan,

JByrd

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T-shirt Children Well

We’re getting ready to drive to Oklahoma, Texas, and then back through Nashville. Our late friend Paul Ford sits right over my heart, and his favorite lyric by Matt Fockler is strapped across my back, “Do you dream? Do your dreams come true? What do you see? What do you do to make it happen?”

You too can have a soft, breathable triblend people’s Rushmore: http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/t-shirts

***************** 

Nov 28 Wed

The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Nov 29 Wed
Fort Worth Live
Fort Worth, TX

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Dec 3 Mon
True Music Room
Nashville, TN

Dec 5 and every Wednesday, you’ll find us at The Kraken on Hwy 54 outside Chapel Hill, NC. We call it “church with beer.” Y’all come. Your fan, 


JByrd

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Jonathan Byrd & The Pickup Cowboys

The album is here. Reviews are pouring in. Radio stations are playing it.

Thank you for time, money, and support you gave us during this sometimes difficult journey. We lost a good friend. We found a great drummer. We started a very successful residency. We got this beautiful record out to the world.

A few great things have happened this week. Blue Ridge Outdoors put us in the first spot on their Trail Mix playlist, along with Reverend Horton Heat, Tellico, and so many other great artists. https://www.blueridgeoutdoors.com/trail-mix/trail-mix-november-2018-2/

Americana Highways premiered this really fun video for Temporary Tattoo: https://americanahighways.org/2018/11/12/video-premiere-jonathan-byrd-temporary-tattoo-video-from/

Henry Carrigan interviewed me for No Depression about what I’m reading and why: http://nodepression.com/article/jonathan-byrd-learning-be-human-through-stories

Then he wrote this incredible review of the album: http://nodepression.com/album-review/telling-stories-our-lives

“Byrd is a poet of the people” and that’s all I ever wanted.

********************

Jonathan Byrd & The Pickup Cowboys is now available on Bandcamp! It's the only place to download full-quality digital audio files AND it's the digital source that pays us the most. If you order the beautiful 64-page booklet through Bandcamp, you'll get an immediate download of the album while you wait. https://jonathanbyrd.bandcamp.com/album/jonathan-byrd-the-pickup-cowboys

And of course, you can always get it straight from me. Johnny and I will sign it and send it to your box. http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/pickup-cowboy

***********************

We’ve got a short run out west coming up and we’re bringing Jonathan Byrd & The Pickup Cowboys with us!

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Nov 29 Wed
Fort Worth Live
Fort Worth, TX

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Dec 3 Sun
True Music Room
Nashville, TN

Your fan,

JByrd

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Folk Yes!

We’re headed up to Connecticut this weekend for the Northeast Regional Folk Alliance, or NERFA. It’s a folk music business conference, so we’re going to play some folk music like this:

We’ll be at The Kraken Wednesday night getting totally folked up. Lately, we’ve been streaming to Facebook Live from The Kraken, so look for us at https://www.facebook.com/jonathanbyrdmusic/ from 7-10pm every Wednesday.

Sunday night, we’ll play a show before we get the folk home:

Nov 11 Sun
mActivity Coffee Shop
New Haven, CT

Then later this month, we’ll get the folk out to Texas and Oklahoma:

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Nov 29 Wed
Fort Worth Live
Fort Worth, TX

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Your folking fan,

JByrd

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Thank You

Saturday night was probably the biggest show of my life. Thanks to everyone who made it possible. The artists: 

Jess Klein - Follow her. She’s about to put out another great album. https://www.jessklein.com/

A Different Thread - they’ve come into their own greatness this year. Listen and download “On A Whim,” their new album here:  https://adifferentthread.bandcamp.com/album/on-a-whim

Stan Lewis - This guy has given us so much. Great pictures, great music, and a ride to the airport. He doesn’t have a lot online, probably because he doesn’t need it. 

Violet Bell - I’ve been very excited to see two friends find their musical home together. This duo is much bigger than a duo. https://www.amazon.com/Dream-Wheel-EP-Violet-Bell/dp/B0753967JN

Our helpers:  

Thanks to Sarah Howe, Randy Best, and Danika Moody for stage help. I felt like a king, with things happening as they should all around me. 

Thanks to Barbara Ford for building a beautiful altar for the show, including Paul’s ashes and a pre-show espressso to wake the dead! Paul showed up for sure. 

Thanks to Aaron Honeycutt for donating his best bison skull, and to his daughter Crystal for delivering it.  

Thanks to my personal assistant, Bobbie Hayes, for selling $1500 worth of Pickup Cowboy and representing us at the table. Bobbie saves my career daily and believes in us with her whole heart. 

Thanks to Heather, Tom, Chris, Matt, Roscoe, Erin, and all the Haw River Ballroom crew for treating us and our fans like royalty. I didn’t meet everyone- my apologies if I missed you. 

The biggest thank you is to our fans and community for being there for us, some of you weekly. We are blessed by you. We’re going to work hard for you and deliver what you want- a great show, great music, and a chance to be a part of something bigger than ourselves.  

No, really. YOUR fan, 

 

JByrd

 **************

I’m leading my fourth Online Songwriting Retreat next weekend, and there’s one spot left! Learn more and sign up at http://onlinesongwritingretreat.com/

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The Signature Edition

We’re at the Saxapahaw General Store, signing albums. It’s a busy week here, and you’ll have a chance to hear us wherever you are. 

Tomorrow at about 6pm, we’ll be on WCHL The Hill, playing live and sharing tracks from the record. Listen live locally at 97.9FM or anywhere at http://listen.streamon.fm/wchl

Wednesday, we’re back at The Kraken with our good friend Eliot Bronson. He’s one of our favorite artists and he’ll be one of yours. 

Thursday, we’re live on WAME 92.9fm & 550am Real Country for two hours, 4-6. Listen live here: http://lightningstream.com/player.aspx?call=WAME-AM 

Friday, were excited to return to the beautiful Reeves Theater in Elkin, NC - one of our favorite venues that we played this year.

Saturday night is the local music event of the season! Not only are we releasing the long-awaited Pickup Cowboy album at The Haw River Ballroom, we’ll be joined by four of our favorite local artists. Jess Klein, A Different Thread, Violet Bell, and Stan Lewis. It will be a three-hour celebration of our album, the scene that birthed it, and the community we’ve discovered through our weekly residency at The Kraken. We owe y’all so much gratitude, and for us, this a party to celebrate you. 

*********************** 

People ask, Who is the Pickup Cowboy? What is the Pickup Cowboy?  

The cowboy is an American icon. Self-destiny. Man against the wild.

Almost every man fantasizes about leaving his family and responsibilities behind and facing the world alone. The American masculine myth tells us to shut down our emotions to do what needs to be done. But that was never true of the cowboy. Cowboys had songs. Cowboys had poems. Cowboys danced and traveled. They were interested in the world. That’s why they were out there. They weren’t running from their lives. They were walking boldly into their lives.

My friend Kim Beggs lives in Whitehorse, Yukon. She said to me, “You can always tell when someone comes here and they’re running away from something. They never last.” The lesson that all wild places have to offer is: You can’t run from yourself. 

That’s why Johnny’s guitar says FEEL on the back. It’s an imperative sentence. Hey you! Feel. Now. That’s why we’re here. That’s why we’re telling these stories. So you can feel. So you can leave your cubicle behind, your job making jet engines, that workspace where you are not allowed to feel, or that time you have to be strong for your family.

You don’t have to hold back your tears and laughter at a Jonathan Byrd & The Pickup Cowboys show. We’re not going to bullshit you with an American flag and a drinking anthem. I’m going to tell you all about this complicated relationship I had with my father. Which is not America and apple pie. It’s closer to Steppenwolf. And I think a real cowboy would recognize himself in Herman Hesse’s writing. In Siddhartha. The search for authenticity, self-knowledge and spirituality.

And that’s my friend Matt Fockler who write two of the songs on this record. He’s a construction worker who drives old International Harvester trucks out in South Dakota and he writes these beautiful songs full of empathy and self-examination. He’s the Pickup Cowboy. 

If you live and authentic life, if you work hard and keep your heart open, if you’re willing to sing along and dance next to liberal and conservative, black and white, gay and straight, you’re the Pickup Cowboy. You’re our audience. You’re more than our audience. You’re our community. We’re in this together. We’re the Pickup Cowboys. 

Your fan,  

 

JByrd

***************** 

Tonight on WCHL @6pm

Tomorrow at The Kraken! 7-10pm

 Oct 25 Thurs

WAME 92.9

Statesville, NC
no tickets and no live audience - tune in at https://wameradio.com/ !

Oct 26 Fri
Reeves Theater
Elkin, NC

Oct 27 Sat
Haw River Ballroom
Saxapahaw, NC

Discount ticket here!  http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/discount-ticket

Nov 11 Sun
mActivity Coffee Shop
New Haven, CT

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Nov 29 Wed
Fort Worth Live
Fort Worth, TX

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

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Pickup the Cowboy

For weeks, I’ve been saying you can pre-order Pickup Cowboy, our new album. Well, now you can ORDER it. They’re here! The official release date is November 16th but you can get it now. It’s a beautiful 64-page booklet, a photo album of our touring life with Paul. Order yours now! http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/pickup-cowboy

**********************

October 27th, we’re playing the Haw River Ballroom in Saxapahaw, North Carolina, the same room where we held a memorial for our friend Paul Ford when he passed away. Now we’re releasing the album that he made with us. For our hometown album release, we offer our biggest fans a discount ticket, $15.45, no fees, no paper tickets. Your name will be at will-call. Purchase your tickets for you and your friends here for this once-in-a-lifetime show: http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/discount-ticket

**********************

I have ONE SPOT left for the Online Songwriting Retreat, November 2-4. It’s a fun and powerful way to kickstart your writing and learn some new skills. Sign up and learn more about it here: onlinesongwritingretreat.com

**********************

Tour dates! The best way to see us and hear us is live:

Every Wednesday at The Kraken outside Chapel Hill, NC. Rod Abernethy is our guest tomorrow! Check out an amazing Halloween-themed guitar piece from Rod here.

Oct 21 Sun
The Rooster's Wife
Aberdeen, NC

Oct 25 Thurs
WAME 92.9
Statesville, NC
no tickets and no live audience - tune in at https://wameradio.com/ !

Oct 26 Fri
Reeves Theater
Elkin, NC

Oct 27 Sat
Haw River Ballroom
Saxapahaw, NC

Nov 11 Sun
mActivity Coffee Shop
New Haven, CT

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Nov 29 Wed
Fort Worth Live
Fort Worth, TX

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Your fan,

JByrd

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Sugar Daddy, Pickup a Bargain

We caught a nice jam on film this weekend. The video link is a little further down this email. First, I want to remind you that October 27th, we’re playing the Haw River Ballroom in Saxapahaw, North Carolina, the same room where we held a memorial for our friend Paul Ford when he passed away. Now we’re releasing the album that he made with us. For our hometown album release, we offer our biggest fans a discount ticket, $15.45, no fees, no paper tickets. Your name will be at will-call. Purchase your tickets for you and your friends here for this once-in-a-lifetime show: http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/discount-ticket

**********************

You can pre-order Pickup Cowboy, too! It’s a beautiful 64-page booklet, a photo album of our touring life with Paul. We’ll autograph Pickup Cowboy if you want and you’ll be among the first to receive the first-run edition. Every pre-order helps us to pay for press mailings and other costs associated with the album release. Order yours now! http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/pickup-cowboy

**********************

Here are the tour dates:

Every Wednesday at The Kraken outside Chapel Hill, NC. A Different Thread are our guests tomorrow.

Oct 21 Sun
The Rooster's Wife
Aberdeen, NC

Oct 25 Thurs
WAME 92.9
Statesville, NC
no tickets and no live audience - tune in at https://wameradio.com/ !

Oct 26 Fri
Reeves Theater
Elkin, NC

Oct 27 Sat
Haw River Ballroom
Saxapahaw, NC

Nov 11 Sun
mActivity Coffee Shop
New Haven, CT

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Nov 29 Wed
Fort Worth Live
Fort Worth, TX

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Your fan,

JByrd

 photo by Rodney Bursiel, design by John Dixon

photo by Rodney Bursiel, design by John Dixon

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Pickup Discount!

October 27th, we’re playing the Haw River Ballroom in Saxapahaw, North Carolina, the same room where we held a memorial for our friend Paul Ford when he passed away. Now we’re releasing the album that he made with us. For our hometown album release, I wanted to offer my biggest fans a discount ticket, without online ticketing fees. Tickets are normally $18 in advance and $20 at the door, and there’s a $2.50 fee for purchasing the advance ticket online.

So I’m offering tickets on my own website for $15.45, no fees, no paper tickets. Your name will be at will-call. Purchase your tickets for you and your friends here for this once-in-a-lifetime show: http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/discount-ticket

**********************

You can pre-order the album here, too! It’s a beautiful 64-page booklet, a photo album of our touring life with Paul. Corin Raymond, Eliot Bronson, Aengus Finnan, and other celebrities show up too. We’ll autograph Pickup Cowboy if you want and you’ll be among the first to receive the first-run edition Every pre-order helps us to pay for press mailings and other costs associated with the album release. Order yours now! http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/pickup-cowboy

**********************

We’re playing this week with our amazing friend Neal Fountain on bass. Neal has played with Jeff Sipe, Colonel Bruce Hampton, and Aquarium Rescue Unit. He’s a monster. Check this out:

Here are the tour dates:

Every Wednesday at The Kraken outside Chapel Hill, NC, and yes Neal will be with us tomorrow!

Oct 4 Thu
The Crimson Moon
Dahlonega, GA - Neal Fountain on bass!

Oct 5 Fri
The Landings Club
Savannah, GA - Neal Fountain on bass!

Oct 6 Sat
Hendershots Coffee
Athens, GA - Neal Fountain on bass!

Oct 7 Sun
Eddie's Attic
Decatur, GA - Neal Fountain on bass!

Oct 21 Sun
The Rooster's Wife
Aberdeen, NC

Oct 25 Thurs
WAME 92.9
Statesville, NC
no tickets and no live audience - tune in at https://wameradio.com/ !

Oct 26 Fri
Reeves Theater
Elkin, NC

Oct 27 Sat
Haw River Ballroom
Saxapahaw, NC

Nov 11 Sun
mActivity Coffee Shop
New Haven, CT

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Nov 29 Wed
Fort Worth Live
Fort Worth, TX

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Feb 1 Fri
Society Garden
Macon, GA

Feb 2 Sat
TOL Coffeehouse
Columbia, SC

Feb 21-24
Wintergrass
Bellvue, WA

Mar 30 Sat
Fayetteville Public Library
Fayetteville, AR, United States

Apr 6 Sat
Sycamore Creek Concerts
Dripping Springs, TX

Your fan,

JByrd

 Johnny Waken, Jonathan Byrd, and Neal Fountain

Johnny Waken, Jonathan Byrd, and Neal Fountain

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Pickup Cowboy is here!

Our new album, the one we’ve waiting for three years to put out, the one with our late friend Paul Ford all over it, is being printed as we speak. It’s beautiful. We’ve made a 64-page book with pictures commemorating our great run with Paul Ford on cello.

If you’ve been to our shows in the past few years, you’ve heard Pickup Cowboy. Lakota Sioux. Do You Dream? We Used to Be Birds. Temporary Tattoo. They’re all on Pickup Cowboy. You should order your copy now! Why?

You know how y’all say to us, “How come you’re not famous?” Well, we’re working on it and it takes money. We’ve spent $15,000 on this record up to this point and we’re about to spend that much more. You can have it for only $17! Every purchase will get us closer to, “You’re so famous I couldn’t get tickets!”

Order your copy here: http://www.jonathanbyrd.com/the-store/pickup-cowboy

Your fan, JByrd

________________________

Come celebrate with us! We’ll also be at The Kraken outisde Chapel Hill every Wednesday from 7-10pm.

Sep 22 Sat
Bristol Rhythm and Roots Festival
Bristol, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 23 Sun
Windfield Farm Concerts
Pfafftown, NC - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 30 Sun
Isis Restaurant & Music Hall
Asheville, NC

Oct 4 Thu
The Crimson Moon
Dahlonega, GA - Neal Fountain on bass!

Oct 5 Fri
The Landings Club
Savannah, GA - Neal Fountain on bass!

Oct 6 Sat
Hendershots Coffee
Athens, GA - Neal Fountain on bass!

Oct 7 Sun
Eddie's Attic
Decatur, GA - Neal Fountain on bass!

Oct 21 Sun
The Rooster's Wife
Aberdeen, NC

Oct 25 Thurs
WAME 92.9
Statesville, NC
no tickets and no live audience - tune in at https://wameradio.com/ !

Oct 26 Fri
Reeves Theater
Elkin, NC

Oct 27 Sat
Haw River Ballroom
Saxapahaw, NC

Nov 11 Sun
mActivity Coffee Shop
New Haven, CT

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Nov 29 Wed
Fort Worth Live
Fort Worth, TX

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Feb 1 Fri
Society Garden
Macon, GA

Feb 2 Sat
TOL Coffeehouse
Columbia, SC

Feb 21-24
Wintergrass
Bellvue, WA

Mar 30 Sat
Fayetteville Public Library
Fayetteville, AR, United States

Apr 6 Sat
Sycamore Creek Concerts
Dripping Springs, TX

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Burn baby burn

Writer's block? Want to write a song and never have? Want to write better songs? Join me for the Online Songwriting Retreat! Space is limited: Oct 12-14 has 7 spots left, and Nov 2-4 has 6.

"...everything about your workshop, from the examples and song prompts you gave, to the teacher and peer critiques, took me straight to where I needed and wanted to be. I laughed, I cried, I wrote, I rewrote, I finished. What a great feeling! Saying I'm grateful doesn't begin to cover it."

"It was great to be at home for this!  Not just because it was so economical, but because I was able to get the peace and solitude I need to write."

“...you created a safe place for us to work with the expectation of accomplishing something we could share.”

Sign up here!

_______________________

Protesters love to burn stuff! Bras, flags, shoes- there are even people who have burned themselves in protest. Well I'm going to protest the burning of things, starting right now by not burning anything. In fact, I'm going to not burn everything I own!

Tell the television stations and newspapers I'll be protesting live at all these places, brazenly not burning anything in front of everyone. Except for candles. We'll be burning candles but not because we don't like them. We love them. That's why we're burning them. We're not going to burn the stuff we DON'T like. It's a revolution, which is just a circle after all.

Every Wednesday 7-10pm at The Kraken!

Sep 15 Sat
Cowee School Arts & Heritage Center
Franklin, NC

Sep 22 Sat
Bristol Rhythm and Roots Festival
Bristol, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 23 Sun
Windfield Farm Concerts
Pfafftown, NC - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 30 Sun
Isis Restaurant & Music Hall
Asheville, NC

Oct 4 Thu
The Crimson Moon
Dahlonega, GA

Oct 5 Fri
The Landings Club
Savannah, GA

Oct 6 Sat
Hendershots Coffee
Athens, GA

Oct 7 Sun
Eddie's Attic
Decatur, GA

Oct 21 Sun
The Rooster's Wife
Aberdeen, NC

Oct 26 Fri
Reeves Theater
Elkin, NC

Oct 27 Sat
Haw River Ballroom
Saxapahaw, NC

Nov 11 Sun
mActivity Coffee Shop
New Haven, CT

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Feb 1 Fri
Society Garden
Macon, GA

Feb 2 Sat
TOL Coffeehouse
Columbia, SC

Feb 3 Sun
The Crimson Moon
Dahlonega, GA

Feb 21-24
Wintergrass
Bellvue, WA

Apr 6 Sat
Sycamore Creek Concerts
Dripping Springs, TX

Your fan (for the flames),

JByrd

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Kyshona Armstrong!

We're excited to play with Kyshona Armstrong again this Friday, September 7th at the beautiful Sue E Trotter Black Box Theater in Athens, Tennessee. She'll join us again later this month for the legendary Bristol Rhythm and Roots Festival and a concert at Windfield Farm. The most popular podcast I've made yet, for good reason, was an interview with Kyshona. She turns heads and ears wherever she goes. You can listen on the apple podcast app, on Stitcher, and on most podcast websites and apps. Just look for The Byrd Word podcast, "Do Something."

Don't forget - every Wednesday at 7pm at The Kraken in Chapel Hill NC!

Sep 7 Fri
Sue E Trotter Black Box Theater
Athens, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 15 Sat
Cowee School Arts & Heritage Center
Franklin, NC

Sep 22 Sat
Bristol Rhythm and Roots Festival
Bristol, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 23 Sun
Windfield Farm Concerts
Pfafftown, NC - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 30 Sun
Isis Restaurant & Music Hall
Asheville, NC

Oct 5 Fri
The Landings Club
Savannah, GA

Oct 6 Sat
Hendershots Coffee
Athens, GA

Oct 7 Sun
Eddie's Attic
Decatur, GA

Oct 21 Sun
The Rooster's Wife
Aberdeen, NC

Oct 26 Fri
Reeves Theater
Elkin, NC

Oct 27 Sat
Haw River Ballroom
Saxapahaw, NC

Nov 11 Sun
mActivity Coffee Shop
New Haven, CT

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Feb 1 Fri
Society Garden
Macon, GA

Feb 2 Sat
TOL Coffeehouse
Columbia, SC

Feb 21-24
Wintergrass
Bellvue, WA

Apr 6 Sat
Sycamore Creek Concerts
Dripping Springs, TX

Your fan,

JByrd

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Hold on, I'm Coming!

I’ve had a hard year and you have really helped me through it. There’s no better therapy than connecting with you online, onstage, and in person. I’ve gotten a lot of messages like, “When are you coming back to Portland? Chicago? Toronto? Texas? England?

I have a great band and good friends. I would love to play for all of you soon, in your town, and it’s been frustrating to not be able to say when I’m going to do that. Fall tour dates are now mostly in and we're working on spring.

Starting back in January, we played a weekly residency at a little roadhouse called The Kraken that has been the best part of my week all year. We have a new album coming out in a few months- featuring our late great friend Paul Ford- that I’m very proud of. And, the Online Songwriting Retreat has been a smash hit!

"Your honesty and thoughtfulness and calm presence go a long way to creating a safe and relaxed atmosphere for sharing... It’s great how you get us writing right away and BRILLIANT how you mine something out of our own words for the prompts.

"It was great to be at home for this!  Not just because it was so economical, but because I was able to get the peace and solitude I need to write."

"...everything about your workshop, from the examples and song prompts you gave, to the teacher and peer critiques, took me straight to where I needed and wanted to be. I laughed, I cried, I wrote, I rewrote, I finished. What a great feeling! Saying I'm grateful doesn't begin to cover it."

The next Online Songwriting Retreats are open for reservations! October 12-14, and November 2-4. One person has already reserved for October, and there are only eight spots available for each weekend. Reserve your spot now at http://onlinesongwritingretreat.com/available-retreats/

Here are all the tour dates currently on the books. Click on any venue name to link to it:

Every Wednesday, 7-10pm
The Kraken
Chapel Hill, NC

Sep 7 Fri
Sue E Trotter Black Box Theater
Athens, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 15 Sat
Cowee School Arts & Heritage Center
Franklin, NC

Sep 22 Sat
Bristol Rhythm and Roots Festival
Bristol, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 23 Sun
Windfield Farm Concerts
Pfafftown, NC - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 30 Sun
Isis Restaurant & Music Hall
Asheville, NC

Oct 5 Fri
The Landings Club
Savannah, GA

Oct 6 Sat
Hendershots Coffee
Athens, GA

Oct 7 Sun
Eddie's Attic
Decatur, GA

Oct 21 Sun
The Rooster's Wife
Aberdeen, NC

Oct 26 Fri
Reeves Theater
Elkin, NC

Oct 27 Sat
Haw River Ballroom
Saxapahaw, NC

Nov 11 Sun
mActivity Coffee Shop
New Haven, CT

Nov 28 Wed
The Blue Door
Oklahoma City, OK

Dec 1 Sat
Unitunes Coffeehouse
Houston, TX

Feb 1 Fri
Society Garden
Macon, GA

Feb 2 Sat
TOL Coffeehouse
Columbia, SC

Feb 21-24
Wintergrass
Bellvue, WA

Apr 6 Sat
Sycamore Creek Concerts
Dripping Springs, TX

Your fan,

JByrd

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Extraordinary Elephant

This past weekend, I led the second Online Songwriting Retreat, and I was reminded again that we are ultimately creative beings. I didn’t know if it would be possible to achieve the same intimate connection with other writers over the internet as we do at in-person songwriting workshops, but these groups developed trust together and shared their deepest stories. We laughed and cried together. Most importantly, we wrote together.

We still have a few spots open for next weekend, August 24-26, and I just announced October 12-14. Sign up for either one at onlinesongwritingretreat.com.

This Wednesday, it will be our pleasure to have Ordinary Elephant as our special guest at The Kraken. Scroll down to listen to a great song. Show starts at 7pm.

Other shows:

Sep 7 Fri
Sue E Trotter Black Box Theater
Athens, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 15 Sat
Cowee School Arts & Heritage Center
Franklin, NC

Sep 22 Sat
Bristol Rhythm and Roots Festival
Bristol, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 23 Sun
Windfield Farm Concerts
Pfafftown, NC - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Your fan,

JByrd

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I love a rocket launch. Every one is audacious and hopeful, an apical expression of human curiosity and ingenuity, another step in the ultimate adventure. Looked at another way, we are all made from the same stuff as the planets and stars, so maybe we are only returning home to find ourselves.


This is a Delta IV Heavy rocket with the Parker Solar Probe, headed for the Sun. It’s not easy to get to the Sun, as evidenced by every object that has had five billion years to fall into it and hasn’t, including us. Orbital mechanics aside, my phone doesn’t work if I leave it in my truck on a hot day. How do you get the world’s most sensitive instruments to function in the corona of the Sun?


A solar probe was one of NASA’s founding missions in 1958 and it just launched yesterday. My son’s name is on a memory chip inside it. We watched the launch together and it occurred to me that we probably don’t have 60 years to work on something together. We’ll have to do the best we can with what we’ve got.


Raising a child is another exercise in audacity and hope, and every birth is like a rocket launch- they happen all the time yet they never seem ordinary. The forces involved are tremendous and intoxicating. I have to say, a rocket launch is somewhat less exciting than the birth of my child but it is an intoxicant that I can share with this miracle who looks like me.


Simply posting this little musing is part of my dream to write and connect with people who enjoy my writing. After eighteen years of touring, it still gives me a thrill to hit the return key.


What are you doing that is audacious today? Do you remember what you wanted to do when you first began to dream? Is it still important to you?


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P.S. I’m leading two weekends of the Online Songwriting Retreat- August 17-19 and 24-26. Sign up today at onlinesongwritingretreat.com and let’s write like we dreamed we would!


Your fan,


JByrd


(Image credit: NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration)

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The Online Songwriting Retreat

Are you a songwriter? Would you like to write a song? Would you like to donate towards a scholarship? The Online Songwriting Retreat starts up again in two weeks! I'm hosting two weekends this month, August 17-19 and August 24-26. Sign up and donate at onlinesongwritingretreat.com. There are fifteen slots left.

We’ll meet online on a Friday evening and write together all weekend. Everyone will have one-on-one time with me. Sign up at onlinesongwritingretreat.com, or donate to provide a scholarship to a working artist. Thank you! Your fan,

JByrd

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We play a little roadhouse called The Kraken every Wednesday, 7-10pm. It's on Hwy 54 West outside Carrboro, North Carolina. We'll start traveling again next month:


Sep 7 Fri
Sue E Trotter Black Box Theater
Athens, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 15 Sat
Cowee School Arts & Heritage Center
Franklin, NC

Sep 22 Sat
Bristol Rhythm and Roots Festival
Bristol, TN - with Kyshona Armstrong!

Sep 23 Sun
Windfield Farm Concerts
Pfafftown, NC - with Kyshona Armstrong!

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Dog Days

Sirius A, known as the Dog Star, is the brightest star in Earth's night sky, found in in ancient astronomical records of every culture on Earth. “Dog days" refers to the period in mid-summer when Sirius rises with the sun.

Sirius A is so massive that its companion star, Sirius B, is ten thousand times dimmer and yet nearly the mass of our Sun. Even though Sirius A was known to the ancients, Sirius B was hidden by its companion’s light and was only discovered in 1862.

To find Sirius, use the three stars in the belt of Orion. They point downward and to the left toward Sirius.

To find us, just point your GPS to these fine venues. Siriusly.

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JUL 18 WED
The Kraken
Chapel Hill NC

JUL 21 SAT
The Crimson Moon
Dahlonega GA

JUL 22 SUN
Isis Music Hall
Asheville NC

JUL 25 WED
The Kraken
Chapel Hill NC

JUL 27 FRI
Doodad Farm
Greensboro NC

JUL 28 SAT
Saturdays in Saxapahaw
Saxapahaw NC

 photo by John Respess

photo by John Respess

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Yellow Balloon

yellow heart balloon 

in an airport skylight

balloon and sky  

ever out of reach

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We’re happy to be home and ready to rock! 

 

JUL 11 WED

The Kraken

Chapel Hill NC


JUL 18 WED
The Kraken
Chapel Hill NC


JUL 21 SAT
The Crimson Moon
Dahlonega GA


JUL 22 SUN
Isis Music Hall
Asheville NC


JUL 25 WED
The Kraken
Chapel Hill NC


JUL 27 FRI
Doodad Farm
Greensboro NC


JUL 28 SAT
Saturdays in Saxapahaw

Saxapahaw NC

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Send Coffee

Johnny and I are into our second week of this summer’s UK tour. The weather has been perfect for this southern boy, but a bit hot and sunny for the natives.

 

I hiked to the top of a Cumbrian mountain and looked over the Isle of Man while Johnny sat in the shade of an English oak in the company of some very hardy looking sheep. We walked by William Wordsworth’s birthplace in the gloaming of a northern midnight. We bought stock in Marks & Spencer.


The people are lovely. The gardens are stunning. The coffee is terrible. The fuel is expensive. Driving is exciting. There are no Japanese beetles. History is ever-present.


You are our best advertisement. Please forward these dates to friends in the UK. We’ll try to bring some northern summer home.

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TONIGHT! /The Beambridge Inn/Wellington, UK

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JUL 4 WED /Kitchen Garden Cafe/Birmingham, UK

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JUL 5 THU /Green Note/London, UK

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JUL 6 FRI /The Maverick Festival/Suffolk Hill, UK

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JUL 7 SAT /Festival Hall/Market Rasen, UK

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Long Live the King

We’re taking over this country. Don’t worry, we’ll leave in a couple of weeks. Until then, everyone speaks Welsh and has a lot more fun. Especially if you come to a show: 

 

JUN 26 TUE

The Royal Oak
Stafford, UK

JUN 27 WED
Stables 2
Wavendon, UK

JUN 28 THU
Norden Arts Centre
Maiden Head, UK

JUN 29 FRI
Haile Village Hall
Egremont, UK

JUN 30 SAT
Wild Zucchinis Bistro
Cockermouth, UK
SOLD OUT


JUL 1 SUN
The Wightman Theatre
Shrewsbury, UK

JUL 2 MON
The Musician
Leicester, UK

JUL 3 TUE
The Beambridge Inn
Wellington, UK

JUL 4 WED
Kitchen Garden Cafe
Birmingham, UK

JUL 5 THU
Green Note
London, UK

JUL 6 FRI
The Maverick Festival
Suffolk Hill, UK

JUL 7 SAT
Festival Hall
Market Rasen, UK

 

Your fan  (and King), 

 

JByrd

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  Lord of Raglan Castle

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