The stage! The lights! The audience! The life of a gigging musician! Exciting! Travel the world! Create a network of fellow musicians in every city and town and region! This is all true but there is a less glamorous underside to the exotic life of a freelancing musician. This underbelly side of the business, people... Continue Reading →
Freelance PSA #1: Time
Time. Time should be a friend of the musical freelancer, but too many times Time is viewed as the enemy. "There isn't enough TIME.""What TIME is the gig?""What TIME should I get there?""What TIME should I leave for the gig?""Can I play in TIME?""Do I have good TIME?" Many of these questions do not get... Continue Reading →
DMA Update, Spring 2022
Well, hello everyone! It has been a while since I've written anything or given any update to those I don't regularly run into anymore. I don't peruse FaceBook anymore because I just found it depressing to discover people that I know are actually racist bigots and were hiding their true self from our interactions. So,... Continue Reading →
NEWS! (of the life changing kind)
Well, I guess it is high time to let this personal news begin to scamper out into the wilderness. I have a pretty darn big announcement to make, so let me get right to it by knocking down some of the "what could it be" thoughts you may be having at this moment. The news... Continue Reading →
Recital, Feb. 23rd! 7:30pm!
I'm very excited and happy to announce that on Tuesday, February 23rd at 7:30pm, I will be presenting a joint recital with my pal and radio co-host, Matthew Altizer. Although on this recital, we won't be playing a piece together, we have a stellar program of really interesting and fun music for you! You can... Continue Reading →
2020 Was No Fun. Let’s Look Ahead to ’21!
What will 2021 bring? I have no idea and I'm out of the prediction business because I thought that 2020 was going to be a spectacular year for me personally, musically and financially and we know how that turned out.
Happy Holidays…from afar!
Most years my December playing calendar is full. I have opportunities to play with some amazing people all around Indiana, Illinois, and beyond. The great gigs are what can help get me through the sometimes slower months of January and February. Of course, this year is different.
What are we to do? How can we go from playing rehearsals or concerts 4-5 times per week to playing nothing? How will we keep our chops up and running? And WHY should we keep our chops up and running if there are no gigs on the horizon?
Freelancing 2020 and Beyond
A full indoor wedding gig during COVID...a bad decision. It is hard to know where to start when discussing the *new* freelancing situation many of my musical colleagues and I find ourselves. We have been put in a near impossible position to choose between our financial livelihood and our health and well-being. I realize that... Continue Reading →
Scale Sheets for CSO Summer Camp
Thank you for watching and following along with my video for the Carmel Symphony Summer Music Camp. I mentioned some scale, arpeggio and scale pattern sheets for you and here they are! You can download them, print them and when watching the video, follow the music and play along as I play it! I've included... Continue Reading →
Accepting New Students
I am now fully set-up to teach virtually from my home studio. I have spent the past month or so making sure the technology on my end all looked and sounded great. Now that things are cooking along, the only thing I need is to fill my schedule with students. If you, or someone you... Continue Reading →
Forced Vacation: Week 3 and 4
I sat down to write this blog around April 10th, now it is April 20th. Where did the time go? I wanted to write a blog post a week about this new paradigm in my freelance career, yet I can hardly seem to find the time to do it! Where does the time go? I... Continue Reading →
Forced Vacation…New Scales!
Here is a new scale sheet that we can work on during our 'Forced Vacation'! ii-V-I is so much fun!!! ii V I scales - SCORE
Freelance Notebook: Week Two
What are some of the coping mechanisms you are using to stay focused, sane, and most importantly happy and connected to others?
Let's Skype sometime soon!!
Social Distancing Warm-Up (w/DOCS!)
FORCED VACATION MORNING TROMBONE WARM-UPS!
Social Distancing Trombone Warm-Up
Keeping up a schedule is not easy. I'm trying to keep my kids on a school day schedule (read about THAT adventure here), but keeping myself on a schedule is a different story. In order to get myself motivated, showered and dressed, I'm starting a TROMBONE WARM-UP Facebook LIVE session!!!!!!! This is taking place at... Continue Reading →
Pandemic Parental Pedagogy
Staying focused and encouraging and positive takes a lot of energy. It's a delicate balance that I will have to keep getting better at balancing! Thankfully, we have plenty of time to find that perfect balance!
I am not a medical professional, but I trust medical professionals and the advice and information they provide. Each day there are more articles, more information (and dis-information), and questions/concerns put out there about the COVID-19 global pandemic that make figuring out what to do, how to do it, and what to KNOW more and... Continue Reading →
Freelance Notebook: Positive Edition!
Amid all of the worry, panic, and 'social distancing' we find ourselves in, I thought it was perhaps a good idea to begin to focus on all of the positive things that can happen during the week or two (or three) we freelancers have off of work. I think I've wallowed in my own self-pity... Continue Reading →
Freelance Notebook (supplemental)
Well, it happened. Everything I have for the rest of March has been canceled. Let me say that this is a good thing from the perspective of dealing with a public health emergency. I am totally in agreement with all of these decisions. Stopping the spread of this is a priority. Holding public events is... Continue Reading →
Freelance Notebook 3.12.2020
I've been very fortunate that most months I've scheduled enough work to cover all my financial responsibilities for our household. There are months that are better than others, but eventually it all balances out...usually. This week, I've lost a couple very high profile (and high paying) engagements due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) scare. I am... Continue Reading →
An inside look into the freelance musician life.
Happy New Year 2018!!
2017 was a challenging year in may ways but on a personal and family level 2017 was a successful year. It all began with the birth of our daughter Ellington Wriston-Dole on January 27th. At the beginning we weren't sure how easily a family unit of 3 would morph into a family unit of 4,... Continue Reading →
Toddler Days 8.23.17
The fear is real. The anger palpable. The force of nature that is my toddler can be felt from different parts of the house. You know it is there, in the undercurrent of the activities, the subtext to the babbling. When will it erupt?The eruption is inevitable. What will be the trigger? On any given... Continue Reading →
Toddler Days 8.8.17
Be careful what you ask for. Many times I find myself wishing, pleading, for some peace and quiet during the day. And when that quiet happens, there cannot be peace! Quiet toddlers are like quiet farts. They're dangerous!As I was cleaning the kitchen from our breakfast bar making, I noticed something odd. I could hear... Continue Reading →
Toddler Days 8.2.17
Evening walks have become an exercise in inefficiency. Q: How can one walk for nearly an hour and basically go nowhere?A: Bring a toddler.I've learned that there are really big sticks, big sticks, and play sticks. Depending on the mood of the toddler no stick is an appropriate stick, ever. Rocks have similar categories, but... Continue Reading →
Toddler Days 7.27.17
You know something is amiss when your toddler who regularly wakes up precisely at 6:51am every single morning wakes up at 9:30am. This is not cause for celebration. This is cause for alarm and a warning. Raise your threat level to orange. Just know that something will go down today.Question:How can a tiny human simultaneously... Continue Reading →
Toddler Days 7.25.17
Here is my attempt to document the crazy days I have with my 2.5 year old son. This isn't because my toddler boy is special and everybody needs to know about him and his activities , it's simply because he does some whacked out shit and I don't want to forget about it! You may... Continue Reading →
Finding The Groove
As a stay at home dad, loving husband, and freelance musician, my schedule is anything but steady and predictable! Many days (or weeks...) can go by without making much progress on the goals I have set out for myself. Days blend together and turn into weeks and I'm still at square one with many ideas... Continue Reading →