April 2018

Just in time for the busy month of April: I finally have physical copies of my CDs for sale! Five original tunes on a cd for those sunny day drives in the warmer months ahead. Pick one up at a gig near you 😃

This weekend Tommy and I head to Westfield to play Shaker Farms Country Club for the first time Friday evening, then Saturday we’ll be doing a full band show with the Franklin County Sweethearts at the Rendezvous in Turners Falls!

On April 13th, I’ll be opening for Lexi Weege and the Wondertwins for their monthly residency at New City Brewery in Easthampton, MA (makers of fine ginger beer). I’ll be playing a 45 minute set with Tommy LeBeau on guitar, AJ Del Negro on bass, Doug Beaumier on pedal steel, and Mike Benoit on drums.

The following Saturday, Lexi and I return to our favorite honky-tonk, the SAC in Shutesbury, MA for a duo set (that may develop into a four-piece by the end of the evening…).

On Sunday the 15th, Tommy and I play our monthly afternoon set over at the Hardwick Winery. We’re hoping for some warm weather so we can finally play outside!

Saturday, April 21st, I’ll be traveling to Otis with the Big Gunz to play loud rock n roll for the folks at the beautiful Knox Trail Inn. A great spot to go out for drinks, dinner, and a big ole dance floor.

Tommy and I finish off the month with a trip to Bennington, Vermont, one of our favorite destinations, on Saturday the 28th. From 1-3pm we’ll play some new original songs and old favorites at the South Street Cafe and Bakery.

That wraps it up for the month of April, folks! Happy Spring 🌷

~RP

Wildwood Flower

Last Sunday, Tommy, Lexi, and I met at Tommy’s studio in Worcester to work on some tunes, eat snacks, and try a little impromptu recording. Once we settled in to tracking, it turned into a very productive session. First we recorded a basic live track with vocals: Tommy on drums, Lexi on the Gretsch Rancher acoustic, and me on my Yamaha P-45 electric keyboard, then Tommy set to work adding bass and electric guitar tracks. That very evening we posted the first of five classic country cover tunes, the Carter Family’s “Wildwood Flower”:

The Carter Family has been a huge inspiration for the Franklin County Sweethearts; this tune is one of our favorites we’ve been performing at our live shows. A “video” of the song (just the audio file and a film photo shot and developed by Tommy’s father, Dennis LeBeau) was uploaded to Facebook , and later to YouTube. We hope to return to the studio this weekend and have more tunes to share with you soon.

Til next time,

RP

In the Studio

 

~ We’ve had a busy winter ~

Tom LeBeau and I have been hard at work creating the “Pauline” album.
We recently invited our friend Josh Allen to 5 Front Studios to track his cajon (a box-shaped percussion instrument that he built himself and proudly decorated with sweet Star Wars stickers).  Josh is the percussionist for the Franklin County Sweethearts, and occasionally Tom and I will borrow him for a set of our own, so we wanted to feature him on the record. Josh is also a photographer who is based in the Pioneer Valley.  He has worked with us and many other fabulous local artists since first moving here from Ohio!

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the control room at 5 Front Studios – photo by Josh Allen
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Tracking live keys, guitar, and cajon

While we make steady progress tracking for the album,  I’ve also been experimenting with album artwork ideas.  I used cutouts from my sketchbook and found pieces to create the first very basic prototype front and back cover design for the album.

These were taken on my phone at my kitchen table, just to get a feel for the basic layout:

Pauline as a waitress “serving coffee in a restaurant”
~ Based on a sketch done one morning over breakfast
at Charlie’s Diner in Spencer, Massachusetts ~