Tag Archives: doug patrick

VOCAL Showcase August 2010

The “curtain” opened on the August 16th, 2010 Showcase precisely at 8:05 p.m. Jeff and Stephanie Boarman, a husband and wife musical team and long-time VOCAL members, set about to entertain the good-sized crowd with an eight-song set. Describing their music as “Americana”, they opened with a gentle tempo train song entitled “Bittersweet”, with pleasing vocals by Stephanie. A tongue-in-cheek honky-tonk tune followed: “I’ll Toast to Your Sobriety” which featured the lyrics “I ain’t here to think, I’m here to drink, I’m right where I’m supposed to be!” Jeff’s delivery of this tune had the audience grinning and chuckling, and featured expert mandolin work by Barry Lawson.

A minor sonority framed the song “Miner’s Prayer”, telling of a father’s hope that his infant son not have to live the life of a miner. “Cappuccino Cowboy”, the set’s only waltz, told of a cowboy’s new life (and diet!)r his son to not follow in his footsteps. chucklinged to be!”. g vocals by Stephanie. a toungue-in-cheek honky as a married man. Stephanie sang of a man “broke and branded” and how “she did it single-handed”. Clever concept and writing!

More minor sounds from the duo in “Don’t Take My Baby Away”, a lover’s lament, followed by a switch to major in the witty “Baby, How About You?” This duet, a male-female discourse, speaks of the man’s practicality and the woman’s seductive approach. The audience responded with generous applause to yet more of Jeff and Stephanie’s fine writing.

“My Kentucky Flower” was given an up-tempo bluegrass treatment, speaking of “hillbilly justice” and included the warning “don’t mess with Daddy’s little girl!” Jeff mentioned this song was once pitched to superstar Ricky Skaggs. “He swung…and missed!” said Jeff, drawing laughs from the songwriters in the crowd. Once again, Barry Lawson’s fine mandolin work greatly added to the song.

“Bury Me in Kentucky” painted a picture of a beautiful rural area and closed the first half of the show. After a warm round of applause showing their appreciation for this trio, the audience responded with even more as the Boarmans were presented with the
Co-Songwriters of the Year Award from VOCAL.

Doug Patrick, the evening’s featured act, left no time for the crowd to even fasten their seat belts, instead launching into his first song with nary an introduction! The familiar “Make It Work” opened his nine-song set and featured backup from the Boarmans, Barry Lawson on mandolin, and long-time ‘Vocalonian’ Larry Cody on bass guitar. Larry would be on stage for the entire performance, as others would come and go throughout the evening.

“Full Time Love” featured the same lineup laying down a good backbeat, and told of a fickle woman trying to get a relationship into high gear. Sharing the spotlight, Doug brought up his good friend Eddy Kitchen to sing a self-penned song titled “Good Loves Can Die”. This tune captured the essence of what many call “pure country music”.

One of my favorites followed: “Put Him in the Lineup” tells the story of a young “Tee Ball terror” from the viewpoint of a proud grandfather. This tyke is a switch-hitter like Pete Rose, a slick fielder a la Brooks Robinson, “can run those bases like Willie Mays”, and “can hit the tater for a country mile”. A pure bit of genius from the pen of Doug Patrick!

Louis Millhouse and Gary Shaver grabbed trumpet and clarinet respectively and lent a hand on the song “New Orleans Nights”, another well-known and well-loved song from Doug’s catalogue. A highlight of the evening followed: Kelly Kennedy’s lead vocal of Doug’s new song “Till the Boys Come Home Again”. Her delivery mesmerized the crowd as she sang of two families connected by marriage, each with men fighting on opposite sides of the Civil War. Andy Cleveland’s fiddle tenderly underscored the song’s message.

Continuing with the Civil War theme, Doug offered “One Lone Georgia Pine”, a moving story of a soldier’s exploits on the battlefield and his final resting place. The war cycle was completed with “Molly”, a quick waltz describing a soldier’s love for his wife. One lyric was especially powerful: “when the fighting gets heavy, you can hear grown men cry”.

The closer was Doug’s ode to the famous Virginia racehorse, Secretariat. “Watch That Red Horse Run” told of Big Red’s feats at Churchill Downs and beyond. While the rest of the field was “hotter than a Maytag range”, Secretariat was “cool as ice” and set a record clocking in at “one fifty-nine and change”. Doug did justice to the horse’s great career with this well-written song. Many who lent musical support during the evening squeezed on to the stage for this final tune.

The VOCAL Showcase has been a mainstay of our group and the Richmond music scene since July 1991. We are proud of its longevity and the many talented members and appreciative fans who make it possible. Here’s to songwriting and VOCAL’s upcoming 25th Anniversary in July 2011!

– Gary Shaver

VOCAL Showcase March 2009

What a night for music!  Despite the dose of cold, wet, nasty weather outside, everything inside was as hot as a Richmond summer day!  A fantastic crowd gathered on March 16, 2009 to witness an outstanding performance for showcase number 212.  Drew Routh gave a fantastic solo performance, followed up by the team of Larry Cody, Eddy Kitchen and Doug Patrick.


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Thanks to Richbrau’s TapHouse for three years of hosting the showcase.  Each month our members, fans and friends gather with the songwriters to enjoy live performances of their original music.  Come down to Shockoe Slip and enjoy freshly prepared meals, at an original micro-brew as you enjoy original music performed by the song’s writer.

Drew Routh started the evening with his fine fingerwork and his unique songwriting style.  In fact, the first song wasn’t a song at all, but basically a finger excercise to get the hands going – it was impressive none the less!  Next Drew moved into ‘Dream Me Out of Here’, which is somewhat of a ballad, at least in feeling if not lyrical content.  ‘Little Better Light’ is an evocative song, that inspired emotions of hope in my mind.  Drew then introduced the song ‘No Place to Run’ as a poem, that inspired the music to accompany the words one year after its creation – sometimes good ideas take time to ferment.  Drew concluded the first set of the evening with ‘Take a Little Time’, ‘Am I Crazy?’ and ‘Right Now’.  Thanks to Drew for a varied and entertaining performance.

For the second half of the evening VOCAL presented a tag-team match – Larry Cody, Eddy Kitchen and Doug Patrick were on the card for an outstanding set of country, blue-grass(ish) and a touch of rock.  Each gentleman had a guitar in hand for each song, trading off lead or rhythm parts, with Larry Cody taking guitar solo’s in many songs.  Larry Cody took the mic first to kick off the set with ‘Ready for the Road’, an appopriate beginning for this musical journey.  The trio stopped along the way for a quick game with Doug Patrick pitching vocals on ‘Put Him in the Lineup’ – a fun song.  Eddy Kitchen stepped up to the microphone next and said hold on…we should ‘Drink This Thing Through’ – Larry Cody chimed in with some good lead guitar during the solo break.  It was great to hear Eddy’s extraordinary voice again on the showcase stage.  After this time of reflection, the trio crossed a cool running stream, passed through the valley up the hillside to visit ‘Mountain Girl’ – this song had a moving melody and the lyrics seemed to captivate the crowd who responded with a great cheer for Larry’s lead vocal and guitar solo.  While on the mountain top, Eddy again told the story in song about how ‘Good Loves Can Die’.  A tribute was also paid to ‘Molly’ in a somber, but eloquent and poetic song by Doug Patrick about a soldiers’ dying thoughts.  On the way back down the mountain, Eddy shared more thoughts with ‘If These Walls Could Talk’, Doug proclaimed ‘Think I’ve Really Done It’ and Larry sent the crowd home with a rockin’ little number and a wish for the road ‘Keep On’.  These three gentlemen put on an outstanding show that kept fellow songwriters and other attendees in awe as they presented one great song after another.

Thanks to all of those who attended and supported our performers.  A great big thanks to VOCAL volunteers, Matt Manion for sound assistance, Larry Cody for the table tent cards, Matthew Costello for web development and photography.  We’ll see you next month!