Saturday, September 14th, 2002 Small Potatoes

Tears of joy, tears of laughter, tears of love. These two performers, with just a handful of songs were able to draw from their best to draw us into their world and their hearts. I looked around the room and realized that everyone else was caught up in the magic, just like me. I realize that this is why we host these house concerts, so that we can share the magic with our friends. When you take a perfomance that deserves to be on a stage that faces at least a few thousand seats, and put it into a 16’x 16′ room, there is nothing to keep that magic from touching you.

I’ll let you in on a secret. Jacquie and I have histories that intersect. We were both “rennies”, people who worked at Rennaissance faires. We were able to connect at least a couple people we knew in common, and had we tried, I am sure that there are dozens more. And Rich, geez, I’m in awe of his guitar playing. That guy can make a tin can sound like it was made by the master.

If you didn’t get a chance to buy their CDs, they do sell them through the website. It’s going to be hard to top this show, but I’ve come to realize that every show is different, every one great in its own way–just like people.

Read more about Rich and Jacquie on their website at

August 17th, 2002 Teddy Goldstein

It’s 3:00pm the day of the show and the telephone rings. “Hi, this is Teddy Goldstein, and I have some bad news…” Teddy had lost the clutch on his car just this side of Louisville, KY. Being a “take charge in a crisis” sort of guy, I asked him where he was and determined that if I left right then, I could get to wherever his car was being towed to, and get back to Evansville in time to do a show. It was a lot easier driving to Louisville than calling a couple dozen people and telling them that the show was cancelled–besides, he was going to need the money for that new clutch.

Teddy’s show is hard to describe. Songs that could sound pathetic from another person took on dark and fatefully humorous twists in his hands. Besides being a exceptional guitarist, he blew a harp better than anyone I have ever heard while pulling a tight rhythm out of the guitar. At the beginning of the night, I was a little worried that people wouldn’t know how to take a wit honed on the Manhattan pavement, but by the end of the night, everyone’s face hurt from smiling so much.

So, it worked out pretty well. I had a gig Sunday evening near Louisville, and we were able to drop Teddy off at the Pep Boys where his Subaru was patiently waiting for replacements. Teddy made his gig, we made ours, and though the weekend seemed much too short, it was a terrific time.

You can buy cds and learn more about Teddy Goldstein on his website at

Friday, July 19th, 2002 Alan Rhody

Alan Rhody is a consummate Nashville songwriter–I mean, he’s recorded songs that are recorded by famous people and even made into hits. He’s had multiple famous people record the same song–how cool is that? I must admit that I had all sorts of odd impressions about how a big time Nashville songwriter might be a little too sophisticated to want to hang out in our little cabin on the edge of Evansville.

Well, I was more than pleasantly surprised to discover a warm and kind man who enjoyed shooting the breeze for hours over coffee about recording and publishing music. And, like Rod Macdonald, he’s been in the business for decades, and has some wonderful stories about being in the business–which requires a double dose of humor and irony. Alan not only brought CDs for sale, but he also brought along hand-painted shirts that he creates.

You can read all about Alan Rhody at

Friday, May 31st, 2002 Raymond Yates

What a huge voice! When Ray Yates sings, you just have to hold onto your chair, because he can knock you over. Ray had been through the area before, playing at the Lotus Dickey festival in Paoli, and then at Penny Lane Coffeehouse. When Ray played Penny Lane, he stayed here at the cabin and made a HUGE killer pot of vegetarian spaghetti sauce that took about a month to consume.

This time around, Ray didn’t have time to cook, because they were bouncing back and forth between Ohio and Indiana, catching gigs that didn’t quite line up the way you’d want them to. It wasn’t in the plans, but I sat in with Ray’s show, adding a little mandolin here and there. Even without knowing the songs, I could “read ahead” on where they were going, and I think it sounded nice. We got to catch Ray a week later in Paoli, and returned a music stand that was left behind.

Ray doesn’t seem to have a website, but you can learn more about him at

Friday, March 29th, 2002 Rod MacDonald

You couldn’t ask for a better inaugural show for our house concert series than Rod MacDonald. He’s a consummate professional, having written and performed songs since the 1980’s. I was first turned onto Rod when working at The Nameless Coffeehouse in Cambridge, Ma. Fred Small brought Rod up from NYC to play for our Boston crowd. That was a heck of a show, and you can imagine my surprise when 15 years later, Rod calls looking for a gig on his way up to Chicago.

Rod has an endless stream of stories from the road, some involving a case of mistaken identity with a much more famous folk singer from the ’60’s. His song, “I’m Not Bob Dylan” had us practically rolling on the floor.

Check out Rod’s website at