Log Cabin Memories
Time keeps flying by here in the Great Land. The nightly live Tok summer shows have become a landmark in my life. After sharing the spirit of Alaska with well over 50,000 visitors in the last 7 years it is more fun now than when I started. Great Alaskan players have come out to join me at Jerry, Rose and Mike Jernigan’ Tok RV Park including the World Class Chet Atkins stylist Ron Wise of Willow (www.ronwise.com), the National Award winning Alaska Button Box Gang, and most recently the incredible singer/songwriter Melissa Beck. Also joining me on stage two very talented young musicians, Wesley Colquette and Jennifer Kemper, along with timeless veterans such as Kenny and Larry Snow, Vi Janowski and the most incredible and creative fiddler I have ever played with, Jim Mitchell.
A few years ago a man came to my cabin thanks to my friend Ron Wise. His name was Buster B. Jones. For a day and half the cabins walls reverberated with the most incredible music my ears have ever heard. Buster was not just guitar player. Not just a musician, he was a virtuoso who could work the strings as fast as his mind could operate and that was fast. Chet Atkins described Buster B best. “He plays guitar like he was double parked.” Those who knew him well knew that Buster was fighting for his life in his last years. Even though he may have looked physically challenged, when he picked up a guitar his playing defied reality. Buster laid down his guitar for the last time early in 2009 and now he is on the other side where the strings don’t ever need changing and the melodies flow like the clouds in the sky. God will be blessed by your picking Buster.
Another good friend in music and life, Scott Ainslie has hit the big time with his CD, Thunder’s Mouth. An internationally recognized blues artist of the Robert Johnson style, Scott shows his incredible talent and creativity in both his playing and lyrics in this powerful, timeless work. Congratulations Scott, and also to your incredibly talented wife Barbara who has developed a fine promotional approach for promoting music artists. Find more on Scott and his music at: http://thundersmouthcd.com
Also congratulations to Harvey Reid and his lovely wife Joyce as they welcomed their newest son Levi into their minstrel world of music. Out of York Maine and under the banner of Woodpecker Records, they have blazed the trail for independent artists who get their music directly to listeners without the filtering of giant studios and record companies. Discover Harvey and Joyce and their music at: www.harveyreid.com or www.woodpecker.com
Not long ago a visitor to Alaska called and asked if I could take the Alaska show to his home state of Arkansas? I was more than glad to oblige and together with Chris and Joe Wadz from Chicago and Judy Domeny Bowen from Rogersville, Missouri and videographer Dale Sinder from Urbana Illinois, we put on a full show to a packed house in Mountain Home Arkansas. What a party complete with panning for Alaska Gold during the intermission! Thank you Will and Charlene Triplett for underwriting us and making us feel so welcome. My wife Sue who helped make all the arrangements work and I were given the key to the city and by the time we left felt like we had a second home.
So here we are back in Tok, getting ready for another season of music and fun and the release of a new long play CD people have been asking about for some time. It is a collection of 11 tunes I have written down through the years as well as 6 classic American Root songs that have inspired and changed my life. It is called Log Cabin Memories and was recorded live with Pat Fitzgerald and Robin Dale Ford at their log cabin studio, 10th Planet Records, in Fairbanks. (see: 10thplanet.com) It includes the traditional sounds of guitar, fiddle, mando, bass, banjo, dobro, peddle steel, autoharp, harmonica, spoons, and a whole lot of voice and harmonies. After recording my first CD with Pat and Robin years ago I knew they would capture the real spirit needed to make this CD come alive and stay alive. Pat and Robin you are more than friends and great musicians, you are a treasure to me and a huge part of the living music history here in Alaska.
Enough of the yak,yak,yak,….let’s start pick’n and grin’n...the front porch is wait’n so come on over and let the party begin!
In Tok, they have raised a family, cleared
their land, created a garden, and make music with their friends and
Dave’s original Alaska music is
brought to life every summer at live performances each night in Tok.
Delighting audiences with stories, poetry, and music the reviews and
volume of his CD sales attest to his success. He has written a polka
for Petersburg, a song for moose, and even sings about the world’s
most heralded footwear, bunny boots.
“I have loved Alaska
since the day I rolled into Tok in 1973. I keep that love of the wilderness
burning by sharing it with visitors.
This is the grandest land on earth and whatever I can do with music
to get people in touch with it simply delights me.”
Dave has three Alaska CD’s to
his credit, a first place finish in the traditional category in the
State Song of the Year Contest, and has performed in the Alaska Folk
Festival for 20 years.
Each year Dave calls upon other music
artists from around the state to perform in Alaska’s largest arena.
It is a three-day event in October called the "Make It Alaska Festival."
Only Alaskan artists with Alaska music perform at the festival.
to see links to their web sites.
“These are my friends
and my music brothers and sisters. They are charting the course of Alaska
music history and I am proud to be associated with them.”