A good week’s work…

Many of you may know that I absolutely love being in a recording studio producing music.

Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to reconnect with my old pal, Davis Raines, and his group, The Band of Many Names,  to work on a new project called “Turquoise & Silver.” We locked ourselves up for a few days at Fighting Okra Studios and had so much fun that we barely came up for air. Great songs that are well-rehearsed by musicians who are passionate about and dedicated to their craft make for a great session.

Over the years, Davis and I have worked together on several projects which are some of my favorites…search the web to see if you can find them (“Big Shiny Cars,” “Going To Montgomery,” “Parts Unknown,” “Mockingbird,” and more). The Band of Many Names includes the wonderful Pamela Jackson, who recorded a project at Fighting Okra Studios a few years ago called “Red Rock Heart” (more great songwriting), the multi-talented Mark MacKenzie (here’s a link to his bluegrass band, Fade2Blue, doing a cover of the Ace Ford song, “Orphan Train“), and bass player David Conrad of the Americana duo Conrad Y Skordalia (a fine writer and singer in his own right).

Background vocals in progress

In this age where music is often streamed and consumed as ‘ audible wallpaper,’ it’s good to be reminded of the amount of work and collaborative effort that goes into creating and producing a new body of musical work. For me, it’s also important to not take for granted the small pleasure of popping an original CD, created with love, sweat and tears, in my car player (does your car still have a CD player?) and listening, uninterrupted, to some original music on the drive to Memphis and back.

What a privilege. Let me know if you’d like to work on a new record…I can be reached at…you guessed it…the Big Front Porch.

All is gift,


Saturday in a small town….

I woke up to this lovely Saturday thinking of several errands that I needed to run, and with ‘run’ being the operative word, I decided to see what I could get done on foot. While spending a few quiet moments pondering a passage in Paul’s first letter to Timothy while sipping a cup of Community New Orleans Blend coffee, I realized what a gift it is to live where I can walk to campus, the post office, the bank, a grocery store, a coffee shop, an art gallery, the cleaners, and our downtown area of stores and boutiques…nice:) It’s a lot like my hometown growing up, although Fayette was a hamlet (Pop. 1600) compared to Cleveland (Pop. 15,000). From where I sit on the Big Front Porch, the leadership of Cleveland and Bolivar County are doing a good job working to build and sustain a nice quality of life for folks here in the Delta. If you’d like to know a little more about Cleveland, here’s a link to visit: http://www.visitclevelandms.com

And since it’s a holiday weekend, I wanted to mention two great men who share January 15 as a birthdate: Martin Luther King, Jr., whose life and work made a positive difference in the lives of many, and my daddy, James Monroe (Jimmie) Walker, whose life and love made such a positive difference in mine. He left this world when I was only 18, but I believe he would have been so pleased with my musical career and all that it has brought me. I still miss him…

When I lived in Nashville, I had the privilege of hearing the multi-talented singer/songwriter Don Henry perform often at the Bluebird Cafe…I wanted to share his song, “Beautiful Fool,” with you all as we head into this holiday…I hope you take some time to sit on your Big Front Porch and ponder peace and justice…thanks for listening:)