Tour Update: free night in New York City!

You think I'd be over this by now, but I'm buzzing with excitement because:
right now I'm in New York City! Yes! As a kid from Ishpeming, MI, I still get overwhelmed by being here, no matter how often I visit. I feel like a 5th grader from Negaunee going to the Chuck E. Cheese in Green Bay for the first time.

Tonight I'm spending the night at the studio in the East Village where I recorded my Public Library album back in Summer 2003. The window is open a crack, and I can hear the rush of the city four stories below, cars zipping by, horns honking, and that low level NYC hum. What a day this has been!

Woke up in Gettysburg, PA. Got treated to breakfast by Professor Gil Waldkoenig from the seminary, who bought me a bagel and talked with me about the publication dates of various hymnals used by Lutherans in Pennsylvania. Then we did an interview about rock&roll and vocation, which will be used for an on-line course he's teaching next Spring.

At 11:35AM I sat in with the folk band for morning chapel at the seminary, and did a couple of my own songs. For the fifth day in a row I played my newest song "If You Have a Question..." and now that I've played it a bit, it feels reeeeealy good to deliver. And I'm doing it in the key of Gm, and there's something about singing the melody in that range that just rings like a dream. I also played "By Grace" (a song I cowrote with the brilliant Nate Houge), which I've been newly singing up in the key of G (rather than E, like on the album), and the new higher placement is making a world of difference for me.

By 1PM I was on the road with the iPod rocking on shuffle. I sailed down the Pennsylvania Turnpike, and it was an endless moving corridor of 18-wheelers and lovely Fall colors. Initially I planned on getting a hotel somewhere near Philly, hitting the hot tub, and going to a movie at some shopping mall multiplex, BUT instead I decided "Hey, how often do I get a shot at visiting New York City?"

So instead I drove to Princeton, NJ, parked my rental car, hopped a commuter train to NYC, got off at Penn Station, took the subway downtown to the East Village, and ascended the concrete steps to arrive on the surface of the Big Apple. I know it's just a big city, but man, when I came up those steps to the open air, it took my breath away. You can take the boy out of the UP, but you can't take the UP out of the boy.

So tonight I met some friends for dinner and visiting and they took me to a Thai restaurant where I ate the most delicious chicken-and-broccoli I've ever had. Wow. And then we swung by Eric Ambel's club the Lakeside Lounge for a little indie-twang band gig.

What a day! From the battlefield to NYC in five hours.

I'm very pleased and thankful to say that good reviews of my tour are popping up in the blogosphere. Check out what Catrina and Coach have to say. Thanks for the kind words!
Okay New York, time to sleep in the city that never sleeps.


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