April 28, 2009, Gainesville, Florida: Making A Splash

I’m in Gainesville, Florida, again, visiting Dad. got in yesterday, leave tomorrow morning, but that is why I relocated to north Florida, so I could drive over and visit, help out if I can, or just sit and talk. leaving this up a while for the link below.

I’ve made a good splash in St Augustine. A travel blogger, Cherrie Mac, was passing by when I stopped to show the dulci to some street performers in the park, and jammed a tune with them. She shot some pictures and some video and featured me on her post for St. Augustine.

Cherrie Mac’s Travels: “Brian the Folksinger”

I have a house concert at a private venue out in the country this Friday, May 1st. I stopped there on my first round and jammed with some local players, and the owner contacted me about doing a concert before I headed north. There may not be a great turnout because it came together on pretty short notice, but I’ll get to play for some folks and that will give some foundation for next year. I can also get pictures and video to use for promotion next year. The show is at

Lou’s Ponderosa

I am satisfied I can base in St. Augustine for as long as I want or need to. I’ve been talking to venues, playing open mikes, playing the street, and just wandering around with the dulci playing for anyone I meet. I’ve been really checking out the town and meeting a lot of people. It is not perfect, no place is, but it is more than good enough. It is what I seek, a small town with a real history, and family-oriented tourism, restaurant traffic instead of a bar town. A lot of small venues at the restaurants. The street scene is depressing, too much of a homeless street-person image among the musicians, not a professional scene, more charity than quality performance, and too few places to play. I have found a few quiet spots, unfortunately there’s not many people in them to play for. So it goes. I have wandered about for hours sometimes unable to find a place I wanted to play. Maybe I am just too sensitive these days

I have played a lot of open mikes and met a lot of musicians. Everyone is so impressed, and I don’t know what to say. It is just the way it is.. I have to accept that the dulcimer and the music I make really is exceptional, even if I can’t understand, the effect is too obvious for so long, I shouldn’t be surprised I’m having such an effect in St Augustine. I’ve done some great shows, too, both at the OMs and the street, but have also had some problems at the venues getting a good sound through the PA. I think they are just too loud, so loud I can’t hear the dulci. It seems hopelessly muddy and garbled, too loud in small rooms. I get a great sound on the street though, and in at least one of the venues. I’ve taken some video and hope t get it together to post soon, though I am having trouble doing much but playing the dulci, eating and sleeping, and not doing enough of the last two.

I haven’t been able to get back to the boat much at all, so I figure I’ll have to move it closer to St. Augustine if it is going to be practically useful, and for me to get any work done on it. It is 45 minutes or more away from St. Augustine in Green Cove Springs, and there just isn’t time and energy for that. I even wonder if I have time for it at all. But that is another story. Practically, it has been easier to just sleep in the van a few miles out of town. I have been really lucky to find a couple wild places to park so close to town, though it took a while and some luck and/or intuition.

Right now I am looking a extending my stay through May to keep building on the impressive start I’ve made and really build a solid foundation for next year. It is not too early to start booking gigs for October, actually. I have pretty much decided to skip Alaska this year and focus on the recording and get back early to Florida and really spend the winter here. It is all about focusing on the music and not getting distracted, getting things done. I am also just not ready to leave with all the things that have been happening, hard to explain, or too easy… I met this girl… In fact, I have to get this done and get on the road to St Augustine so I can play the open mikes again tonight.

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