Reviving the diddley-diddley blog

So I just deleted my personal blog. And it feels good. The entire blogging thing has only annoyed me lately and I want to focus on what makes me happy and content. There are some great people that I have come to know through the blog, and of course I’ll keep in touch with them, but I know that they will come and see me here, and that they are interested in my music too. As you may know I’ve been fluctuating a lot with my blogs during these years, but this time I feel differently about it and I seriously think it’s the end of it, meaning the personal blog. I’ve enjoyed it a lot over the years but I don’t anymore because of many different things (I could write a book about all that). But, I’m not going to shut up completely, I’m going to use this site again for sharing my music, my progress or lack thereof, my recordings if I do any, reports from music events we go to, and other music-related thoughts.

And on to the music. I’ve played some lately since I was asked to both sing in church a few weeks ago, and then Daniels grandma died and his parents wanted us to sing and play at her funeral, which we did. But other than that, I’ve played way too little music. My instruments are gathering dust although I do have inspiration. I think I’m just lazy and don’t know what to play when I do pick them up. I’ll try to make some plans now for what to learn next, so that I can actually get going with those instruments again. I got an e-mail today that there will actually be a concertina meetup next year again, which was very uncertain in April when we left. So that is great news, because it is definitely one of the most inspiring weekends of the entire year.

On the concertina I have several Irish tunes that I’ll work on. On the mandolin I need to kind of restart with a lot of things because I haven’t played it for so long. I’ll revive all those bluegrass and old-time tunes and will try to start with that Norman Blake tutor DVD again, as well as learn some new ways to play breaks on songs. And for the guitar… I don’t know yet. I guess the best thing will be to sit down with some Norman Blake videos and I’ll have inspiration for new songs and tunes in no time.

Now it’s almost Christmas, so here’s some Christmas music from these genres that I enjoy the best.

I found this video that I couldn’t embed but go listen to my hero in country music, Brad Paisley. I really need to get back to listen to more country music. I kind of got stuck in bluegrass, old-time and Irish music, and forgot about country music. What a shame.
I totally agree with what Brad says here in this video – I hope lots of kids get musical instruments for Christmas. That’s wonderful Christmas gifts that will bring joy to so many.

And to all, I hope you’ll have a very happy and enjoyable Christmas.

The perfect duet

This duet gives me gooseskin. Their voices fit so perfectly together. I’m sorry, Patty, there is nothing bad with country music, but your voice was made for singing bluegrass and old-time.

The gentleman Ralph Stanley is getting old but as far as I know he’s still going strong and touring. He was born 1927… and still touring, that is rather impressive. He’s one great hero in bluegrass music for me. So many great songs, so much great music he’s produced with different people. He gives a much more sympathetic impression than Bill Monroe in my opinion (and I don’t like Monroe’s mandolin playing either, although I know it’s a blasphemy saying that… haha).

This is another great duet. Still Patty Loveless. I love her singing. And Ricky Skaggs was my first hero when I started to play the mandolin.

And here is the true mandolin hero. And he can do more than that.