December 2021
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All I Want for Christmas
(is a gig)

Season’s Greetings and Happy Solstice to all my Blainreaders.  No gigs this month but it's been pretty exciting for me because I just got a new computer and audio interface so now I can dive deeper into my guilty pleasure, electronic music. Stay tuned for some interesting sounds in future Blaincasts.
Many Blainreaders enjoyed last month's tour of my kitchen with Linda's stencil work throughout and now I'd like to share some other artwork that Linda has created since she was done with my kitchen. After finishing the kitchen she put those stencils back to work creating 30+ new pieces. Joel created a gallery on Flickr and several pieces have sold already.  Linda doesn’t usually have anything left after one of her art shows. Check it out:


And as I mentioned earlier, Christmas came early for this old computer geek. After months and months of whining about my under-powered mac I finally bit the bullet and bought one of the new Macbook’s that just came out and it is a dream machine.  Now I can load up as many tracks and layers in my music program and the guitar is much more responsive too. (update: I did manage to overload the CPU a couple of times...)


I documented the unboxing in this month’s Blaincast which you can view here.  You can go directly to the unboxing.

Watch the Blaincast

0:00 Holiday Greetings
2:30 Everything Happens to Me
5:00 Instrumental Interlude
7:30 Unboxing of the new computer
10:20 Winterfolk Preview Concert at Black Swan

End of Year Tip

Back in my IT days, when all I had going for me was that I knew a little bit more about computers than my colleagues I used to encourage them to do a bit of organizing so the new year could start fresh. I would help them delete a lot of old emails and try to start with a fresh in-box for the new year and likewise all their other files.  I would create folders for "Old Stuff" and have a nice empty folder for the new year. I'm a bit of a file hoarder - anytime I've done a big cleanup I end up needing one of the files a few weeks later. It never fails! That was back when all our mail lived on the computer but now I think most of us have mail in the cloud (ie G-Mail).  Of course having unlimited storage means we can get pretty lazy and I've got about 15,000 unread emails.

See you out there (eventually)

Thanks for reading this far. I see that the Blainletter gets opened by hundreds of people but not sure how many read through it. But I always seem to hear from someone or other that they enjoyed it and that's what keeps me going. Feel free to forward this to any friend you think might enjoy my occasional ramblings (and maybe my music, too). These bits and more are always available on my blog,

See you out there, eventually...

BrianB, aka Butch, Nappy, Shaker, Two-Lane Blain, Colorblind Brian, Stringbuster, Buddha of the Blues


Watch the Holiday Blaincast on YouTube

For this album, I wanted to bring attention to the water crisis that is affecting 3 billion people on the planet. "Water Song" is a pretty dark "ear movie" with a global vibe provided by Sadio Sissokho (kora) and Harry Manx (mohan veena). The haunting vocals are provided by Ruth Mathiang. "I'm Not Fifty Anymore" kicks off the album with a little tongue-in-cheek  humour and some fine harp playing from Steve Marriner.  “The Not Worried Blues (An American Dream)” and “You Are Also His Son” were recorded with Julian Fauth and Gary Kendall, Mike Fitzpatrick and Pat Carey from Downchild.  “Blues Des Cantons (Goodbye Sherbrooke)” is a leaving-home barrelhouse boogie “en francais” with David Vest pounding the 88s. Patrick Merner added some bass & synth, and Clayton Doley overdubbed some organ from his studio in Melbourne, Australia. Ken Whiteley played some lap steel on "You Are Also His Son", Jesse O'Brien added some piano and organ to "The Mother I Never Knew" and drummer Michelle Josef provides a solid backbeat throughout.  Some songs end with extended jams (because I loves to jam) and the last track is a ten-minute acoustic soundscape with Michael Jerome Browne from the last day of recording my “Overqualified For The Blues” album years ago in Montreal. I call it “Tai Chi Ten,” …because it’s just the right pace and length for my Tai Chi set, but it makes for a fine meditation even if you aren’t moving.
Track Listing
1. I’m Not Fifty Anymore  3:07
  feat. Steve Marriner
2. You Are Also His Son  4:52
  feat. Ken Whiteley
3. Blues des Cantons (Goodbye Sherbrooke)  4:22  
feat. David Vest & Clayton Doley
4. The Mother I Never Knew  3:55  
feat. Jesse O’Brien
5. Not Worried Blues (An American Dream)  3:37  
feat. Julian Fauth
& Gary Kendall, Mike Fitzpatrick and Pat Carey from Downchild
6. Water Song  5:26  
feat. Harry Manx & Sadio Sissokho
7. Tai Chi Ten  (A Meditation)  9:54  
feat. Michael Jerome Browne

mixed by Margaret Stowe at Ozworld Toronto
mastered by Harris Newman at Grey Market Mastering, Montreal
art direction Linda Turu
photography Margaret Mulligan
design Keijo Tapanainen
Copyright © 2021 Brian Blain, All rights reserved.

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