October 2018 VOCAL Songwriters Showcase

VOCAL October 2018 Songwriter Showcase Review
The October 2018 VOCAL Songwriter Showcase took place on Monday, October 15th at O’Toole’s Irish Pub. Attendance was a bit light, but very attentive.
Steve Nuckolls opened the show with a few of his songs rooted in his experiences either growing up in the country/small town or in his historic Richmond neighborhood. He opened with “Alley Man”, an ode to the folks who wander the alleys in the city always “searching for something”. “At Home on the Backroads” followed, reminiscing about growing up in a small town and cruising the backroads of the rural area. “Something About Your Love” is an upbeat love song where he gets to exercise his falsetto. “Praying for a Rocky Top” is his newest song, bringing back memories of his favorite Rocky Top (beer and wine store) along with hints of the real Rocky Top, Tennessee. He then delivered “Two Hours from Everywhere”, describing the experience of living in a town that’s two hours from any large city, so obtaining things such as diamonds, furs, etc. are very difficult. He ended with “Lines of Love”, a love song about dedication and faith to your partner.

Headliner Markiss Blowfish (aka Mark Branch) then took the stage, delivering several blues numbers as only he can do. We were all onboard as he opened with “Engine # 9”, taking us from Jacksonville to New Orleans. He’d gambled way too much on his woman, so now he’s heading home. The percussiveness of his guitar-playing even sounded like a train. “Mama Don’t Worry Me” is another blues number, telling that woman to leave me alone! You’ve got that mink coat, diamond rings and a new house, so what more do you want? “Country Boys” is a bit of country and a little bit of blues, talking about how country boys hang out in the fresh air and green grass, but don’t play with Barbie Dolls, GI Joes, and Tonka Trucks. They saddle up the horse and buggy and get their fishing on when they can. “Bad News” is just that – nothing good to report through these words. Daddy’s in the chicken coop, my nephew is a lazy boy who can’t pay the rent. “Betty Lou” was a special girl who did him right – she’s his kind of girl. Came up from Tennessee, and really burned up that mini-skirt! I loved the Hokey-Pokey reference in the song – you put the left foot in… “She Keeps Calling Me” is another “leave me alone” number, as all this woman does is call and text my phone and wag her tongue, seven days a week. “I Work All Night Long” describes the never-ending hard life of a hard worker. I work all night long, work my fingers to the bone, there’ll be no rest for me until I’m dead and gone. He ended with another train song, “9:45 Train”. The train’s pulling out, so get your kisses on and say goodbye. Won’t be coming back no more. A mighty fine delivery from the blues master Mark!

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September 2018 Showcase

VOCAL Showcase Sept. 2018

Never say never. Neither wind, rain, sleet, snow or tornadoes, in this case, could stop VOCAL from conducting their monthly showcase, albeit, a week late. This month’s showcase was our quarterly open mic spectacular at O’Toole’s, at which VOCAL members and the general public are invited in to perform their original material , While there was a paucity of audience, there was a plethora of performers.
Emcee Norman Nortledorf opened the proceedings with “Fantasy” written by Glenn Habel, a tale of magic and make believe, followed by his own “Hyperplastic Polyp” a delve into his colon, which was deep sublect for a song.
Aaron Tidd followed with a three song set of tunes including “We Evolve” about a relationship on the rocks, a new song “More to Life” and “A thousand Years”.
VOCAL member John Ellis performed next with his set, consisting of “I’ll Be There For You” in which he professes to stand by his love regardless of what life may bring, “Time Piece” was a tasty instrumental, and to close “You Don”t Love Me, Anymore”. which is self explanatory.
“Bat Shit Crazy” was the first song by Michael Muscarella in which he describes himself as a fool, but “Bat Shit Crazy” in love with her. That was followed by “When I Kiss You” wonderful things happen, and his last song Ray Of Light”.
Steve Nuckolls is a long time VOCAL member and this year’s “Songwriter of the year” and “Song of the year” award recipient. He opend his set with “Hand-Me-Downs” a tale of growing up less than wealthy and relying on hand-me-down items like a bike and clothes. “Rocky Top Towns” referred to those little towns in hill country that have their own special ambience that attracts people to visit and live there. “Two Good” his award winning song followed and it is a loving tribute to why he loves the singee, who had two good arms and two good lips etc. to keep him attracted.
Linwood Boswell runs the open mic at Carytown Coffee in Midlothian, and also performs. “Taxi” takes the singer into a fantasy of being in a taxi and confessing his love to the passenger . Conflicts in life are common between lovers and ” I May Forget Some Things” explores that concept as the singer confesses to forgetting some specifics, but never forgetting “Meeting you was my best day”. Lastly, his closing song. “Fire” exhorts the singee to “wait” until he finds himself.
Closing out the night, long time VOCAL member Gary Shaver performed two songs on the keyboard. Exhibiting his talented chops, he opened with “It’s A Cryin” Shame” about the end of a relationship in which the singee leaves him after a feeling neglected. “Telling Me Goodbye” reflects on the feeling the singer has that his love is about to call it quits by dropping some subtle and not so subtle hints about saying goodbye to him.

All in all, it was a great night for music , Too bad the weather affected the turnout.

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August 2018 VOCAL Songwriter Showcase

The August 2018 VOCAL Songwriter Showcase took place on Monday, August 20th before a spirited audience at O’Toole’s Irish Pub. Gerry Laverty kicked off the show, with Mark Daniel spontaneously filling in for Steve Righter, who was unable to attend.

Gerry started off with some of his newer tunes, tales of a rambler from a Northwest county in Ireland heading off to war, where battle can lead you to fortune and fame. Sweet Destiny followed, telling of riding the ancient buffalo trails, asking how many long nights have pierced this rugged heart, and how many nights have I spent chasing the stars? He followed up with Fare Thee Well to this Old Troubled Life, then took us down to Mexico with a cool-sounding story about his pursuit of an enigmatic Mexican Queen. Looking out over the rooftops of the old border town, she stands out like a diamond – la la la… And the Federales are always in the distance. Gerry then brought on the blues, accompanied by a lightning bug on stage, with Blues in the Night (no where to go to hide from the blues, no train to catch, no itch to scratch). A beautifully finger-picked I Am a House was played by request, an ode to a living structure (I am a house twelve months of the year, I don’t take vacations). This is definitely one of Gerry’s signature tunes! Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem calls for calm in this city after centuries of fighting. The harmonica-driven Your Lonesome Blue Eyes was written while travelling through Montana, and is always a crowd favorite. Another request was Zion Crossroads, referring to the intersection of routes 15 and 250 in Fluvanna County. Gerry closed out his set with yet another request, Paris. This is a very beautiful and delicate finger-picked tune about the beauty of Paris.

Mark Daniel then took the stage with several of his unique tunes. From the Inside Out asks her to just give him a chance, meet him in the middle, and don’t judge him from the outside. How Can This be Over if We Haven’t Even Started Yet asks why you keep sitting me down easy, then pushing me away. I don’t want to lose you, so I’ll just keep you in my song. Big Daddy is a blistering, cultish dropped-D tuned rocking song about a trucker trying his best to get himself home. Wherever Your Love Leads Me is a beautiful, tender love song, where love at first sight left him speechless. Loving You Makes Me Groove is a really fun, feel-good song, conjuring up the feelings you get while watching someone you admire. I’m a Rich Man tells the story of picking up a hitchhiker who imparts wisdom known to few (life’s about the little things the Lord sends your way, eagles in flight, and the treasures in Heaven when the stars come out at night). Feeling is Believing debunks the theory that the words “I love you” are just a sign of weakness (I hope you feel it too, and please forgive me for the clumsy things I do). Mark closed out the evening with a cool bluesy tune I’m On a Love Mission (don’t blame me for the dumb shit he did for you!)

This was a very special evening featuring two of VOCAL’s most talented writers!

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July 2018 VOCAL Showcase

July 2018 VOCAL Showcase

Tonight’s VOCAL songwriters showcase featured three performers with totally different styles of music. First up was newcomer Jim Puckett, with guitar and harmonica, and a hard playing Appalachian style, Started off with his first tune, “What Went Wrong”, a chronicle of the singer’s miseries, with lines such as “Nobody to talk to”, “My money’s all gone” etc. to support the title. “Doesn’t the Rain Still Fall” was followed by “Riverside”. a sad tale of a backwoods romance which was followed by “Lenten Roses” a story of love lost and a hope for it’s return. Next song was “Shaky Leg” in which the singer was trying to runaway from his past, and having a hard time at it. Jim’s final tune in his set was “Stand In the James” which hit home with the audience, due to it’s local proximity of the James River. The message here was that the James offers a way to relieve one’s self of the cres that plague us every day and the rush of the water is a healing balm.
Shifting gears, and instruments, Keely Burn, a talented young lady, set up her keyboard and began her pop influenced set. “Waltz” iirst out of the box, was the singer’s personal statemetn on love which seemed to imply cautiousnes and contemplation. She continued on her philosophical bent with “When I’m Acting” in which she sung about how much better she is appreciated when she putting on a character that appeals to the singee, which is less reactive and more passive. “Sky Song” had an intereesting chord sequence which was reminiscent of a 10CC song, That was followed by “The Spirit In Me” aptly played on the organ setting to give a churchy ambience to the song, Keely closed out hewr set with “The Illusive Rhythm” an interesting conversation imagined between the Great Gatsby and his love Daisy. as was noted by many in the audinece, Keely has become a performer to be reckoned with, creating interesting piano melodies and pithy lyrics.
Last up for the night was Andrew Rohlik, wlo has appeared at a VOCAL showcase a time or two in the past, but not in awhile. Contrasting with the previous two perfromers, in style, he plays electric guitar with a vengeance, and a huge dose of funk and soul. He kicked it off with “Take For Granted” which had the songer sort of caught between being able to read his musical object like “an open book” yet trying to convince her of his sincerity, even though she thought he was taking her for granted. “Fine” a tale of not to worry, everything will work out, was punctuated with Andrew’s soul shouting, which also appeared in some of his next material. “Time To Spend” was a message of patience, with lines like “I’d like to get to know you” and “take it slow”, accented musically by a lot of funky guitar riffs. Next song “For What It’s Worth” was desacribed as a breakup song, and indeed, included the line “I’m fine being single”. Using his pedal effects, Andrew went for the wawa sound, so common in past r and b material, on “Lost and Found” and then shifted to a latin beat with “Pique” or “Peak”, which posed the question “where do we go from here”. Creating a singalong, he continuted with “Heads or Tails” with the chorus “we were never meant to bem why can’t you see” which engaged the audience. His high energy performance called for an encore, and Andrew obliged with the song
Through the Fear”. Hs perfromance definitely was different for a VOCAL showcase where country and pop reign supreme most nights.

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June 2018 VOCAL Songwriter Showcase

The June 2018 VOCAL Songwriter Showcase took place on Monday, June 18th at O’Toole’s Irish Pub. This was a really special night with a collaboration between Doug Patrick and Dick Upton. They backed each other up on every song, and also had some stellar guest performers. Tim Morley and Gary Shaver joined them on harmonica and sax/clarinet, respectively, which added a very special element to their songs.

Dick opened up on his keyboards with Going Down to Georgia, a nice bluesy tune taking us down the road to the peach state. Doug then followed with a new song Make it Work, telling us you just have to do what you have to do to “get it done”! Full Time Love is another Doug tune saying I want to be front and center, not a back-seat love. Dick then brought on Distant Friend, an ode to an old friend who was fighting cancer, and who sparked his desire to resume his songwriting. Gary Shaver then joined the stage with saxophone in hand to add some wonderful flavor to the next tune. Dick delivered Put Down the Bottle, asking for help from above in getting through each day. Doug then played his signature tune New Orleans Night, with Gary accompanying on clarinet – thought I was in Dixieland for a moment! Doug then brought us River Town, his tribute to RVA and the wonderful things it has to offer. Dick sang Have you Ever Had the Blues as only he can. He started writing the song 40 years ago, and only finished it six months ago. My Spiritual Home is another really cool, tropical song from Dick about an experience playing a bar in the Florida Keys. Secretariat is a memorable tune from Doug that all horse loves can enjoy, a major source of pride for Caroline County in Virginia. He then delivered Set it Free, letting us know that we are better off than we think we are. Dick then delivered a couple of muse-inspired tunes Why I Do What I Do and Where Everybody Knows My Name. We are all influenced by our musical friends/surroundings, so it’s great to hear songs about that relationship. He was joined by Tim on harmonica and Gary on sax on these numbers. Doug has a very tender song about his grandchild, I’ll Hold You as Long as I Can, teaching lessons of love, patience, and guidance. He then delivered Leave it as you Found it, a moving number about taking care of Mother Earth. Dick ended the show with a new song, You’ll Always Drive me Crazy, featuring Gary again on sax.

This was a very special evening of musical collaboration and was enjoyed by all!

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VOCAL showcase May 2018

VOCAL Showcase. May 2018.
Open mic night.
Every quarter, VOCAL holds its open mic night, which allows anyone with original songs to get up before the mic and perform. Tonight, there were a host of various artists sharing their music, including some new to VOCAL. To kick off th evening Norm Nortledorf, acting as emcee, began with his song “I’m a Fool” a sad exploration of the singer’s opinions of himself as in “I’m a simple man, no dreams.” Jim Puckett, aw newcomer to the showcase, followed with a set of 3 songs including “Vegas By Now” a tale of two kids who get locked up on the way to as Vegas and are ruing their actions, “Pick Up the Phone” was a desperete cry for help, and “Red Dog” told the tale of West Virginia miners who had to suffer when the mines shut down.
Up next was returning performere Martin McNeil, who’s done a couple of showcases for VOCAL over the last year. Originally from Ca. he now lives in Richmond and plays around town at the various clubs. He comes on with a very high energy approach to his material. “Second Hand Girl” told the story of trying to make it Hollywood, the line “You don’t get anywhere without giving it up” sums up the gist of the song. “Life on the Road” bemoans the difficulty of driving for a living and being away from family and friends with the observation “It ain’t nothing, if you ain’t got love.” “Taking Leave of the City” (intuited titile) was followed by “Apothecary For a Broken Heart” which detailed possible remedies for fixing a love gone wrong.
Aaron Pidd, another newcomer to the showcase followed McNeil. His first song was “What Love Is” in which he tried to explain how to win at the game by making “promises to win” but never quite getting there. A very pretty ballad which he wrote as a teenager, “whisper” came next followed by “We Evolve” which is to say, “we move on” as circumstances dictate. He closed out his set with “Turn My Face and Cry” a sad song of loss.
And, now for something completely different. Rap. We don’t get many (none) rappers doing a VOCAL showcase, but tonight proved the exception. Jay and CD, two young guys stepped up to the mic and proceded to wow the audience with a short set of 3 raps all with backing tracks, “Brand New” either a title or definition was first, followed by I’ll Do You” with CD beat boxing, and lastly, “Soul Far” a long rap that left people wondering how he could have memorized all those words.
Closing ou the night was the group “The Trestle Walkers”, a trio featuring Jeanne Bishop on vocals, Jamie Joyner on upright bass, and Steve Brookings on electric guitar. Their set kicked off with “Cold Dark Hill” followed by “Lured” a rather bluesy type song making good use of Ms. Bishop’s voice, next came “Stare Down The Sun” and then, “Spirit Witch” inspired by the sight of an old black gentleman walking down the street. The trio worked well together in finding the entry and exit points to the songs which, were of anarrative style.
A varied night of music and some unexpected suprises were well appreciated by the audience .

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April 2018 VOCAL Songwriter Showcase

The April 2018 VOCAL Songwriter Showcase took place on Monday, April 16th at O’Toole’s Irish Pub.

Steve Nuckolls opened the show with his new “technology running my life” song Siri Alexa-fied Blues, an ode to self-driving cars, smart homes, artificial intelligence, etc. His song Countryversy contrasts the various types of backroads, country folks out there. He then played Everything’s Just Two Good, the title track of his new EP. He also played Something About Your Love, Sunrise, and Simunye, his tribute to the Zulu people in South Africa.

Headliner Glenda Creamer then took the stage. She played her entire musical she recently wrote on the life of Jesus. She started with a song about Christmas and the birth of Christ, with stories about Joseph, Mary and the Magi. She then moved on to a twelve-year-old Jesus with It’s a Long Walk to Jerusalem. The Wilderness song was about Jesus’ cousin John the Baptist. Wherever You Go is a very beautiful, tender wedding song about one’s steadfast commitment to their partner. That was followed by the Wine song, describing the reception that followed. Follow Me is another beautiful song about Jesus asking the disciples to trust and follow him. Another tune followed based on a parable, asking “wandering child, where did you go? How far did you run? You left behind hearts that love you”. Lazarus describes the story of Jesus waking Lazarus from the dead, and Glenda certainly woke up anyone in the audience who may have been sleeping at the end of the song! She then delivered Zekias, a story about the tax collector, who changes his ways and begins giving half of his possessions to the poor. After riding on the donkey to the children’s delight in Hosanna, the stories around Holy Week unfolded, with the washing of the feet, blessing the bread, and being nailed to the cross. Glenda then sang a lullaby like Mary sang to Jesus’ dead body, followed by Rise Up, Jesus is here to stay!

That was the end of another wonder showcase of original music!

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March 2018 Showcase overview.

March 2012 Showcase
Tonight was the 320th consecutive VOCAL songwriters showcase. Thwre were two featured performers, Martin NcNeil and Steve Fisher.
McNeil , making his second showcase appearance, was first up, on electric guitar. A, very energetic singer, he kicked off his set with “The Love You Give To Me’ which was followed by “Don’t Need a Light/I Believe in You”. This was succeeded by a take-off of The Everly Brothers song “Cathy’s Clown” which was more of a slower version snf more emotional. “I’m Out Of Love” was followed by a faster mover titled “Life On The Road”. A cover of an Emmylou Harris song “In My Dreams” led into the last song of his set, “I’m Comin” Tonight.” Mcneil was well received by the audience for his energetic and vigorous guitar work and singing. After a change over , Steve Fisher stepped up to the mic. He is a long time VOCAL member currently with the local “Tin Can Fish Band” which is well known around Richmond.
Fist song in his set, on electric guitar, was “Saving Grace” followed by “Calico Jack”. “Stowaway” came next. Switching to acoustic-electric guitar, he then performed “Never Gonna Feel”, Till a Morning Comes” and”Too Blind To See”. “Forgive Me” was followed by the crowd pleaser, “Peaceful Revelution” and the Irish tinger tune Friends of the Lord” To close out his set, Steve encored with “Turn Me Around”. Once again, he was greeted with lots of applause and good vibes from the audience.
It was an excellent night of music and conviviality as it appeared there was good feelings, coversation and love all around.

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February 2018 VOCAL Songwriter Showcase

The February 2018 VOCAL Songwriter Showcase took place on Monday, February 19th at O’Toole’s Irish Pub with a quite attentive crowd.

Norman Roscher opened the show with one of his classics and self-inspired Prince of the Trees, a dreamy number that many of us can relate to from our childhoods. The world might be a better place if more of us spent time in the trees! He then entertained us with his newest creation Hyperplastic Polyp. Now this isn’t just your ordinary love song you hear every day (maybe a glove song?). Being a Polyp Farmer allows you to cultivate little clones of yourself. Lost in a Dream is a love song written a year or so ago and was inspired by his friend Jeannie. Mr. Johnson’s Sticky Substance is a little ditty that many local folks can relate to if they keep up with the local news. Just don’t leave your shoes out on the porch! Lady of the Poppy is a very intriguing tune about a statuary in Hollywood Cemetary. She’s so peaceful – is she asleep? He ended his set with another tender love song, Anniversary Song, written for his love Jeannie. With all those beautiful words, she just had to be his man!

John Ellis opened his set with the instrumental A Time Piece. John demonstrates some very delicate finger-picking on his acoustic/electric with this number. He then delivered a new song, Walking With Sharon, another delicate instrumental that had a bit of Spanish classical influence. I’ll Be There for You is a song of resolve, about being there for someone you love (something we need more of). I’m Through is an ode to love lost, a good riddance/Hell-with-you tune. The Last You Could Have Done was to Call, is another love-gone-wrong song, describing the feeling when you hear your partner was seen with someone else. Brother is a minor-key electrified song saying “does she love you like she should”, or are you just hearing the siren’s song? In My Place is another anti-love song, where we had a chance at love until you threw it all away.

Headliner Mark Daniel then took the stage treating us to several of his finely-honed tunes. Big Daddy’s Ride featured some blistering finger-picking on this tune about an over-the-road trucker, and his experiences out and back to his home in Kentucky. I’m Just a Soldier Calling Home is a very moving story about his daughter, a combat photographer in the Marine Corps, and the unique perspective she has in the line of duty. The bluesy I’m On a Love Mission states how he’s trying to win your love, so don’t blame him for what a previous lover did. “Was it the whiskey talking”, the first line of How Can We be Over if We Haven’t Started Yet, may divulge the truth to this mystery – how can it all be over when things appear to be going so well? Mark delivered a mighty fine western swing tune Who’s Sad and Lonely Now. Was there a misunderstanding about how I wear my hat? A new song, You’re the One for Me”, was inspired by one of his daughters and talks of “spoken words I can’t unsay”, “feelings I can’t unfeel”. His next song was written post-breakup, and about trying to get dates – may have been some Facebook involved! What Do You Think of a Man Who Does Dishes includes a man with strong hands and a warm heart, not afraid to do his part. Another love song was revealed: Wherever Your Love Leads Me, ofte”n song by VOCAL member Eddy Kitchen: “Thought I was fishing in Heaven, casting in the Milky Way. Loving You Really Makes Me Groove is another love ditty about loving watching you, and the things you do. Charles City Rain is a cool story from 1939 describing the town suffering from a long drought, and finally getting relief with rains from the Heavens “Lord teach us to pray and send some rain down”. Feeling is Believing is yet another tender love song from Mark, debunking the theory that saying the words “I Love You” is a sign of weakness. Captain is a really cool tune written about his great-grandfather, who never came home from the Civil War. He left home on a sunny day, leaving Mom and a team to plow the land.

That was the end of another wonder showcase of original music!

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December 2017 showcase

December 2017 VOCAL showcase:
Ho-h0-ho. It was a Merry Christmas VOCAL showcase at O’toole’s on Dec. 18th. Feat;ured were many of VOCAL’s finest singer/songwriter performers, and the drawing of prizes. As a holiday oriented show, it was requested that each performer do at least one holiday themed song, and to thet extent they did just that. The show was emceed, by John Ellis, who was also the first performer up. He did two songs, (Me and my baby) On a Cold Winter’s Day which touted the benefits of staying inside and enjoying eahc other’s company in comfort from the cold outside. That was followed by an instrumental “Winter Solstice” which showcased his g;uitar picking ability. Matt Manion, on acoustic-electric guitar followed John with three selections, “God’s Thythm” which extolled the virtues of allowing God to be charge of our lives, “Quarter To Midnight” told the story of two strangers who pass in the night on Christmas Eve, and “Thank You Chuck Berry” recognized Berry sa a main contributor to Rock and Roll with many references to his oeuvre, all sung to Johnny B Good. Steve Nuckolls shared two songs “Sunrise” written while jogging, and “When Like Turns to Love” . Glenda Creamer followed Steve with a varied set of songs,
Ho-h0-ho. It was a Merry Christmas VOCAL showcase at O’toole’s on Dec. 18th. Feat;ured were many of VOCAL’s finest singer/songwriter performers, and the drawing of prizes. As a holiday oriented show, it was requested that each performer do at least one holiday themed song, and to thet extent they did just that. The show was emceed, by John Ellis, who was also the first performer up. He did two songs, (Me and my baby) On a Cold Winter’s Day which touted the benefits of staying inside and enjoying eahc other’s company in comfort from the cold outside. That was followed by an instrumental “Winter Solstice” which showcased his g;uitar picking ability. Matt Manion, on acoustic-electric guitar followed John with three selections, “God’s Thythm” which extolled the virtues of allowing God to be charge of our lives, “Quarter To Midnight” told the story of two strangers who pass in the night on Christmas Eve, and “Thank You Chuck Berry” recognized Berry sa a main contributor to Rock and Roll with many references to his oeuvre, all sung to Johnny B Good. Steve Nuckolls shared two songs “Sunrise” written while jogging, and “When Like Turns to Love” . Glenda Creamer followed Steve with a varied set of songs, “”Jesus, Meek and Mild’, “Christmas Cookies” was a humorous song about oveereating cookies, complete with sound effects (nibble nibble, crunch crunch etc). She closed with “After Christmas” a picture of the holiday aftermath. In between sets, prizes were gien to lucky ticket holders who received gift certificates and CD’s. fter the drawing, Mark Daniel started his performance with “When a Soldier Calls Home” which was a touching portrait of what home means, family, kitchen siblings etc. In the next song, the singer detailed what happened when he picked up a hitch-hiker who went on the regale him with a ll the things that makde him”A Rich Man” mostly all the free things we have around us, mountains, trees, storms, eagles and stars, for example. He closed out his set with “Big Daddy Roll On” a tale of a truck drtiver heading for home. Carey Colvin and Granger Helvey are a couple who make music together and they came up next to showcase their talents. In “Gulf of Mexico, the singer (Colvin) lays out her longing to be out of her rut and living the god life in or by the Gulf of Mexico. “Christmas Kitty” was a cute song listing all the things a cat can do to wreak havoc in and around the Christmas tree and presents, “It’s Christmas Time” typically described all the decorations and f;uss that make up the holiday, and “The Christmas Imp” was a diatribe about Elf on the Shelf, The list of performers closed out with Steve Fisher of the Tin Can Fish Band, doing a song about his “Experiences In Ireland” which outlined a short term relationship during a visit there, Mama Don’t Cry” gave an upbeat message to hang in, because everything will eventually will be all right. His final song, All We Have” had a similar message directed to hobos, that they will find a better place in the sweet bye and bye. After the final prizes of the evening were handed out, a song-along of popular Christmas songs followed. VOCAL wishes everyone a happy holiday season no matter what you celebrate.

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