December Greetings Everybody!
It’s that time of year, and what a year it’s been! Have mercy! Praying for better for the world in ’22. But now the year's winding down, the holidays in sight... and freezing at night. And man oh man, if we’re in the northern hemisphere the days are quite short. I hope you’re all well and good and finding the kind of inspiration and care you need.
CONTENTS of This Newsletter
1. Waymores holiday show in Nashville!
2. Blue Rock Christmas album out now!
3. Ireland dates (and routes) 2022 and 2023
4. Crete writing retreat next summer (teaching)
5. TK Poem of the Month: “Slow as Christmas”
6. Recommended: What I’m listening to...
6. Food for Thought: Year end wisdom from Spinoza and Richard Rohr
1. Don Henry and the Waymores in Nashville December 30
Every year on December Nashville throws a birthday party at the Bluebird Cafe for my dear pal and colleague Don Henry, and this year Don’s invited his old Waymores partners Sally Barris and me to join him.
Thursday, December 30, 2021 9pm CST
The Bluebird Cafe presents…
Don Henry’s Annual Birthday Bash
…with guests Sally Barris & Tom Kimmel
4104 Hillsboro Pike
Nashville TN 37215
For tickets or more info click HERE.
NOTE: December 30 is a Thursday, which means tickets will go on sale ONE WEEK EARLY, on Thursday, December 23) at 8:00 AM CST.
The Bluebird’s so crazy popular these days that tickets usually sell out in minutes, so being ready to click-and-buy at 8:00 AM is highly recommended.
—For Bluebird’s Reservations info page, click HERE.
—For Bluebird’s *Events page, click HERE.
*Note that show is listed as “DON HENRY’S BIRTHDAY BASH WITH SPECIAL GUESTS.”
2. A Very Blue Rock Christmas, Vol. 2 is available now…
…and it features yours truly singing "Blue Christmas" and the Sherpas performing "One Heart.”
My favorite track is the first one on the record: Caryl Mack’s exquisite rendering of Sarah Bareilles’s “Love is Christmas.” (I can barely listen without crying.)
Also featured on the record: an all-star cast with Grace Pettis, David Wilcox, Walt & Tina Wilkins, and Blue Rock maestro Billy Crockett.
Now shipping. To order (or read more about it), click HERE.
3. Tour Ireland with me in 2022 and 2023
a. My 2022 tour will explore Counties Mayo, Galway and Clare and will run Friday, July 22 to Monday, August 1 (2022).
(This is one of my favorite routes along Ireland's amazing west coast.)
b. My 2023 tour will visit Counties Dublin, Waterford and Clare
This tour will give us a taste of Irish city color and a long drink of country culture and beauty, with great music at all stops.
For more info, including how to reserve seats, visit Inishfree Tours HERE and click on SCHEDULES / 2022.
—It’s a little early for reservations for 2023, but if you’re interested you can email me at ireland(at)tomkimmel(dot)com, and we’ll make sure you’re on our first-call list for 2023.
4. Writing retreat on Crete next summer (July 11-18, 2022)
I’ll again be teaching with talented Swedish singer-writer-teacher Eva Hillered in Lendas, Crete (Greece). The little town of Lendas is a magical setting over the Mediterranean, and the community of writers that the retreats attract are the brightest of spirits.
Details coming soon...
For inquiries now: Email Eva from her artist site HERE. (See “Kontakt” and “E-Post” at lower left of her web page to email her).
5. TK Poem of the Month
Slow as Christmas
The lesson I obviously still need to learn
has something to do with living
where I am, on the spot.
Slow as Christmas I’ve always heard said
as I’ve waited to breathe
if the next shoe should drop
—or the next big day comes, I mean
Christmas itself, or the baby,
the wedding, the funeral, the book
or the gold watch earned
when we’re done punching clocks.
As for me, it’s been on with the show
for so long, date to date, song to song
on my climb to the middle,
imagining always I’m close to the top!
But the wise ones say it's all a circle
—an orbit, a big loop
and we’re only circling the block
in a big lazy drive we imagine
leads somewhere that’s better
or worse—should we manage to stop.
Do I know what I’m talking about?
Probably not. But the ease of surrender and flow
and the understanding that this never ends
is noted, recorded, held dear, then so closely
it’s hard to remember. And so I forgot.
6. Recommended: What I’m listening to and loving right now…
a. Chris LaVancher’s new album “After the Flood” (streaming everywhere)
Check out Trade It All for Love, Pickup Baseball, Acapulco and We Are Stars.
For more on Chris, click HERE.
b. Dana Cooper’s new single, “Always Old Friends,” from his soon-to-be-released new album (streaming everywhere)
For more on Dana, click HERE.
c. The Soundtrack for the film “Altamira,” by Mark Knopfler and others.
How did I miss this when it came out 2 years ago? Wonderful short instrumental record. Stream it, buy it everywhere.
d. Bruce Springsteen’s “Western Stars,” the soundtrack from his Western Stars documentary concert.
Another gem I'd missed. Thanks to Michael Lille for sending this one my way. Wonderful collection, and quite different for Bruce.
e. Nanci Griffith’s lovely live album, “One Fair Summer Evening,” which I've been re-visiting.
As you know, Nanci departed this world in August, so listening now is both sad and sweet.
BTW if you’d like a special treat, find the video of her concert from the album. It's called (naturally) “One Fair Summer Evening (DVD).” Not so easy (or cheap) to obtain, but you can also stream it in 4 parts on YouTube. (Search “one fair summer evening dvd.” It’ll pop right up.)
7. Food for Thought: Year end wisdom from Benedict de Spinoza and Richard Rohr
“We cannot heal what we do not first acknowledge.”
—Richard Rohr (b. 1943), author, theologian
“If you want the future to be different from the present, study the past.”
—Benedict de Spinoza (1632-1677), author, philosopher
Till the New Year, Maximum Peace, Love and Understanding,