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Eric Garrison: News

Wow! Has it been that long? - January 12, 2017

 Websites are funny.  Like some of the household maintenance things that you only have to do occasionally, you tend to forget's like they are there and functioning, just doing their job, and you forget that they need to be fed and watered, otherwise visiting folks might think you're not doing much, even though you are.  So, if you have stopped by in the last few months, only to see that I have not been feeding and watering my website, I apologize.  Busy?  Boy, have I been busy.  Doing lots of work with Annie and the Attaboys and my Dylan tribute band, Maggie's Farm.  My Irish band, Flash Company, finally has a website and a Facebook page all its own.  (The website has been occupying a lot of my time lately!)  If you feel like poking around, you can visit the Flash Company website at  We'd love to have you visit!

     Since I've been working on the Flash Company website lately, it reminded me that my site has been sorely neglected.  I'll try to remedy that.  If you'd like to hear some of my newer stuff, you can look me up and find some clips on YouTube.  

     So, Happy New Year!  Keep a smile on your face, be kind to your neighbors, and remember, as John Prine said, "It's a big,  ol' goofy world!"  Ain't it just so.  Safe travels!

Changes and things... - September 3, 2014

Welcome! Just realized how long it's been since I checked in to leave some news or words of questionable wisdom here. The past year has been a fantastic one, musically speaking. I've been performing as a solo doing my singer/songwriter thing - as always, a rewarding pursuit, especially in terms of the people that I get to meet and share music with. Exciting for me also this year has been the chance to relive a misspent youth, strapping on an electric guitar and getting back to playing some "bar music," as we used to call it. I've been working with a very dynamic "power singer" named Ann Teed, and over the past year or so, we started working together, originally as a duo, but more recently under the name "Annie and the Attaboys" (or Attaboyz, depending on who's typing it). That's been a blast, and I've really enjoyed the chance to reawaken my electric chops after many years spent playing pretty much only acoustic music. Over the years, a lot of my electric guitar work has been limited to studio projects that I was producing. So, it's nice to have my old Strat (1980) and my old Les Paul (1969), and on special occasions, my old Gibson Melody Maker (1963). The Strat sounds lovely and clean, and the two Gibsons can growl as only Gibsons can.
The Attaboys stick pretty close to the Hudson Valley, so if you're in this general region, keep an eye out for us. Someday soon, we'll have an Annie and the Attaboys website up as well. Check back here for news on that.
See you on the road or - these days - closer to home! Best, Eric

January Blues and the Light at the End of the Tunnel - January 22, 2013

As Dickens said, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times..." Okay, a bit of hyperbole, but January has been a tough month musically. My show at the Hyde Park Library had to be postponed due to a furnace malfunction in the venue. A disappointment in the moment, certainly, but we'll be rescheduling that show soon - in a warmer month, no doubt. (Thanks to Librarian and Protector of the Library's Living Room ambience, Greg Callahan.)
Then, on the heels of that, I came down with the flu's twin brother or sister...all the fun without the fever. So, as I looked forward to returning to the Bound for Glory radio show in Ithaca, NY on 1/20, I spent a week feeling my throat slipping away as my sinuses decided to terrorize the rest of me for a few days. The end result: no voice on the day it was most needed. My thanks to Bound for Glory's Phil Shapiro for his grace and support in the face of having to come up with a last-minute stand-in. Further thanks to John Cadley for stepping in and putting on a great show that night. I was curled up by the old computer, listening to the show online and feeling much like I used to as a kid when I'd be sick and home from school....looking out the window at our neighbor's backyard where all my buddies would be playing baseball or something, wishing I could be out there. Thankfully, we'll be rescheduling that show, too, so I'll keep you posted.
So, that was the "worst of times." The best of times is that I've written some new tunes this month, so I'm really looking forward to giving them a public airing and learning how to really sing them. (My faithful pup is far too forgiving as a music critic. But then, his very favorite tunes are played by emergency vehicles speeding by our house, sirens blaring. He loves to sing along. But I digress...) Also on the best of times list is the fact that I dipped into the old storage unit and pulled out some of the equipment from my old studio China Moon Productions. Now installed in the closet-style space we laughingly call "the music room," it offers the invitation to be able to write while recording, something I have always preferred. It's nice to be back at the board again.
Thanks for checking in. Hope to see you out there! Best, Eric

Refuel, Retrench, Reboot - August 9, 2012

It's been a great summer, from a musical standpoint. A June trip to Ireland put me in a great frame of mind to approach the rest of the summer, and, much to my surprise and satisfaction, music seemed to find me. Spent some time jamming with a friend's rock and roll band - a great chance to dust off my electrics and turn up the volume some. That will be a continuing thing, I hope, and I look forward to getting back to my club "roots."
A June show here at home offered a chance to play with Scott Petito, Dan Hickey, and Vito Petrocitto - having a band onstage with me was great fun and a challenge to keep up with such great musicians.
For something completely different, I took a workshop in building rustic furniture and had a very intense week of exploring a different art form, one that I hope to continue with. While there, I ran into an old friend who needed a bass player, so I'm doing some bass gigs as well. All of this gave me the impetus to get back out and do some more solo work, so check out the calendar as I get back out and do some shows fairly close to home. Life is good. Hope to see you out there!

Back in the saddle again... - September 15, 2010

After a long hiatus from performing, I'll be back in the saddle, so to speak, on Saturday, May 18 at the Hyde Park Free Library (2 Main St., Hyde Park, NY). See the calendar page for details.
I look forward to getting back out in front of an audience again. Hope you can be there!

Long time between check-ins... - April 17, 2010

Hi, folks. Thanks for visiting - I'm still here, and, apparently, you are, too. As you may have noticed if you looked at the calendar page, I'm in something of a state of semi-retirement from performing. The last couple of years, I've felt a pretty strong pull to hang up my road shoes and spend more time around home. With the passing of my mom in February of '09, a lot more of our life has centered around my dad, who is still living on his own and doing pretty well.
Spring is here. Our home in the Hudson Valley is once again blooming in many directions at once. The lettuce and the onions are in; the asparagus is coming up faster than we and our neighbors can eat it. We cleaned up the berry patch and made a few more raspberry plants a home - hopefully, they'll be happy and bear fruit sooner rather than later.
We've got a bunch of fence to replace on the property, a bunch of painting to do as we've decided to change the trim color on the house. So far, only the basement door and a couple of window frames have made the transition to what I call "state park" green, but the summer is unfolding in front of us, and this will all get done in good time.
Musically, I was happy to finally hold in my hand the final mixes of Mitch Katz's first CD, which I produced. We've been working on this project up at Scott Petito's place for quite a while, with a great team of musicians, and it was a pleasure to get it mixed and out. It's available on CDBaby and other online outlets; take a listen.
I'm still booking and producing concerts for our local library. Make sure to support live music in your town - we need it now more than ever.
Recently, I've been playing around on Facebook and Twitter. I must confess that Twitter got boring real fast, but Facebook has been a great way to be in touch with old and dear friends, and it's been fun as each new "friending" (is that what they say?) leads to a web of faces and smiles from years ago. I'm not as fanatical about it as the students I teach, but I'm enjoying it.
Well, the sumer lies ahead. It looks like a good possibility that I'll be doing some more theater this summer - I'll keep you posted on that. Will be spending some time, as well, looking up some old musical friends and making some music, trying to rediscover, reprioritize, and refresh. (No, I'm not going to say "reboot," though it might be entirely appropriate.)
Keep in touch, drop a line, let me know where you are and how you're doing. Best, Eric

New "career" directions - June 22, 2009

Hi, folks. It's been a long time - glad to see you're still here and I'm still here. Things work out nicely that way.
I'm spending a few weeks this summer playing the part of Gepetto (who happens to play guitar) in the New Canaan Summer Theater's production of Pinoochio. I'm working with the Filament Theater Group of Chicago - a wonderfully talented group of young actors, directed by Tyler Beattie, who wrote this adaptation, including its great music. I'm having a great time, though being the "old man" of the cast is a slightly disorienting experience.
If you'd like to see the show, check out the New Canaan Summer Theater's website. Hope to see you there! Best, Eric

Meanwhile, back at the ranch... - May 29, 2008

HI, folks. My personal rhythms have been tied to the school year for so long that I don't think I'll ever be able to change them. So, for me, this is the time of year when the anticipation begins building for the summer and the adventures that it holds. I'm also very much a homebody at this time of year, 'cause we're busy getting the garden in - lots of tomatoes this year, since we've turned the corn patch over to other things - and, for the first time, we're putting flowers in with the vegetable garden. For many years in the Garrison garden, vegetables and flowers have occupied distinctly different parts of the yard, but this year, we're mixing them up a bit. I'm anxious to see what it will be like to have blooms of many kinds brightening up the beds in the veggie garden.
It's also that time of year when I can get my boat back in the water and get out on the Mighty Hudson once more. My boat weathered the winter a bit better this year - no mold or spiders in the pilot house...YAY! Cleanup was a breeze, and she's just waiting to get back out on the river. Now if we can just coordinate the weather with the days that I can be out there, things will be very good, indeed. (And, yes, I'm in denial about the price of fuel...)
Hope you're having a good spring - shoot me an email; I'd love to hear from you. Best, Eric
P.S. I've just discovered the joys of YouTube. I was actually able to find videos of two of my all-time favorite artists from the late '60's/early '70's - Terry Reid and Spooky Tooth. For those of you who don't know Terry Reid, he was originally asked to be the singer for Led Zeppelin, but he turned the job down. (!) And Spooky Tooth was a kind of super-group that included Mike Harrison and Gary Wright - they put out a couple of wonderful records, which I proudly play on vinyl. But, I'd never seen either Spooky Tooth or Terry Reid perform live - it was great. (Look up Bert Sommer's performance of "Jennifer" at the original Woodstock festival, too. Memories...)
I was glad to see that Terry Reid is still out there touring. I think that one of the best things about YouTube is keeping track of all the musicians that I admired when I was younger and being able to see them in their present and past incarnations. Very cool.
I videotaped my recent show at the Hyde Park Library in Hyde Park, NY...just did it with a single camera, but if the audio is sufficiently good, I may put it up on YouTube. I'll keep you posted.

Thanks to the folks at North Elk - May 23, 2008

Many thanks to the great folks at the North Elk Coffeehouse in North East, MD for their wonderful hospitality! I did a show there recently (my 3rd time there), and it was, as always, a great time. The folks at North Elk are a wonderful audience, and we shared a lot of laughs, a lot of music and stories, and some great food. The end of the night always comes much too soon at North Elk - it's the kind of place where you'd love to sit down and play through the night. Many thanks to Rick and the great volunteers there for having me back again. I look forward to the next time!

Spring 2008 - May 15, 2008

Hi, folks. Seems like I've been ignoring the journal here, but actually I've just been concentrating on my work with the Cedar Run Song Workshops. Signups are in full swing for Cedar Run, so if you're in need of some rest, relaxation, and musical immersion, check it out at
I had a couple of local shows last week that went very well. We had a nice crowd in New Canaan, CT at the Carriage Barn last Friday, and on Saturday, I played in my hometown of Hyde Park, NY. The audiences at both shows were wonderful, and it was great to share some music and stories after a winter-long hiatus from performing.
I'll be at the North Elk Coffeehouse in Northeast, Maryland on Saturday night, so if you're in the area, please do stop by. (There's additional info on the calendar page.) I had a great time at North Elk last year, and am really looking forward to reuniting with one of the world's best audiences!
I hope you're all enjoying the coming of spring, though it's been a rather chilly one hereabouts. The tomato plants that we've started are anxious to be transplanted, so I hope things warm up soon. This year's garden will also boast a variety of beans, something I haven't grown in a few years. I decided to take a rest from growing corn, as I had done for the last 8 or 9 years. So, the corn patch will play host to some bush tomatoes, some ornamental pumpkins, and some beans. We'll see how it goes.
I hope our paths cross at a show this year. Keep in touch! Best, Eric

Cedar Run - July 17, 2007

Just got back from the inaugural week of Cedar Run Songs Workshops at the SevenOaks Pathwork Center in Madison, VA. What a great week it turned out to be! The setting was beautiful, the food was awesome, the community feeling was warm, the classes were just great, the staff was fantastic.... to say that it turned out to be a great time for all is an understatement of grave proportions. We've set the dates for next year's program. I have a feeling that it will fill up fast, as we keep our classes to a maximum of eight and keep the entire program to a manageable and comfortable size. Be sure to visit the Cedar Run site at to keep in touch with what we've got going on. There are surprises in store for this fall and winter as well.
Have a great summer!

Countdown to Cedar Run - May 8, 2007

Hi, folks! Well, the calendar is counting down to summer and the first Cedar Run gathering at the SevenOaks Pathwork Center in Madison, Virginia from July 8 through the 13th. The Cedar Run Workshops will offer classes in songwriting, performance, voice, body work, and marketing with a stellar faculty consisting of Kate Campbell, Tom Kimmel, Pierce Pettis, Brooks Williams, Sloan Wainwright, Mae Robertson, and Cindy Novelo. I'll be there, too, putting in my two cents.
I recently put the 06-07 seasons of my two concert series to bed, as well. The Carriage Barn Acoustic Music Series in New Canaan, CT, and the Hyde Park Free Library Living Room Concerts in Hyde Park, NY had great seasons, offering concerts and workshops by a great roster of performers, including Kate Campbell, Tom Kimmel, Brooks Williams, Cosy Sheridan, Sloan Wainwright, and others. In Hyde Park, we started an additonal series called RiverSongs which opened up the opportunity to hear artists from the Hudson Valley in our wonderfully intimate concert space. Our guests there included Ken and Julie; Holland, Thompson, and Tooch; the incomparable Vito Petrocitto; Helen Avakian; and our own Kathy Moran, performing with friends Bob Barlow and Tom Ryan.
We were very ambitious in Hyde Park, as we also started a song circle on the last Sunday of each month, during the fall and winter seasons. Attendance at all these events picked up this year, and we're planning for an exciting seaon next year!
In other news, I've been producing a CD for New Jersey singer/songwriter Ferd Piccuirro, and it's almost mixed. I'm really looking forward to the release of this project, which features Ferd's lovely songs and vocals.
I also recorded some shows this winter, looking toward putting out a live CD in the summer. My old friend Jon Kadela, sound engineer extraordinaire, put things together for me, so we're combing through the "tapes" (okay, they're computer files these days) and looking for a winning group of performances.
Lastly, we have a new pup in the house. He's a big fella with a sweet disposition and a wicked set of "Power Paws" as we call them. It's kind of like living with a puppy who's playing linebacker for the Green Bay Packers. We love him, but we make sure we're balanced and grounded when he's around. His company manners aren't the best yet, but we're working on it.
Anyway, thanks for reading! Come on out to Cedar Run - we'd love to see you there!

Happy Holidays! - December 21, 2006

Happy Holidays to you all! Thanks for visiting. We've had a funny, global-warming kind of season here in NY/CT so snow yet, and temps that are more characteristic of October. Lots of my friends are happy about that, but I am hankering for some cold weather and snow.
I've spent the day working on the Cedar Run Workshops website (, and I'm getting steadily more excited about the program. If you visit the site today, you'll be able to read the course descriptions for our staff members and get a flavor of what we'll be offering. I'm still working on the bios and the registration information. Keep an eye on the site, 'cause in a few days, there will be a special Early Bird registration deal that you won't want to pass up!
I'm looking forward to some winter gigs - here in CT in January, and then in MD and RI later in the season, including a chance to open for my old friends Rex and Neal of Aztec Two Step. Take a look at the calendar page for more info.
Keep in touch! Pay a visit to the guestbook and let me know you're out there. Best, Eric

New Concert Series News! - October 27, 2006

The concert series that I produce in New Canaan, Connecticut will begin its 14th (or is it 15th?) season in January. This year's all-star lineup will include Tom Kimmel (January), Kate Campbell (February), Mae Robertson (March), Brooks Williams (April), and Sloan Wainwright (May). It looks to be a great season. For more information, write to Kathy at and ask to be put on our email list so that you won't miss a show!
I also produce a series in Hyde Park, New York for the Hyde Park Free Library. This year's offerings have been expanded to include, in addition to all of the great folks listed above appearing who will also be part of our Living Room Series (now in its third year!), a monthly concert highlighting artists from the Hudson Valley, and a monthly song circle that is open to all. For more information on the offerings in Hyde Park, drop an email to Kathy at and ask to be put on our mailing list there. All of the Hyde Park Living Room Series concerts also feature afternoon workshops - write to the HPFL address for more information on those, too.
If you're within driving distance of either of these venues, it's well worth the trip to join us. Hope to see you there!

Exciting New Stuff! - October 27, 2006

It was a great summer with lots of music (and some time on the water in my boat - but that's a whole other story!). The biggest and most exciting development in the past few weeks is that I'm starting a new workshop program which will commence next summer.
As many of you know, I've been with the Swannanoa Gathering in North Carolina since 1992, and it's been a great run there. Thanks to Doug Orr (my friend of longstanding and President of Warren Wilson College, which sponsored the Gathering), I had the opportunity back in '92 to develop the Contemporary Folk Week Program for the Gathering, which quickly set a standard for many other programs across the country. I've always been proud of the fact that the Contemporary Folk Week program put the emphasis on having a quality program with excellent teachers who could inspire our students and help them to realize their own goals, while also establishing a community atmosphere which made everyone feel comfortable and valued. The Gathering also offered me the opportunity to put a Performance Lab program in place, and for a number of years, North Carolina venues like the Fiddle and Bow, the Purple Onion, and the Charlotte Folk Music Society supported by Lab groups by hosting our concerts.
With the retirement last spring of Doug Orr as President of Warren Wilson, it seemed like a good time for me to be moving on as well. Thanks to everyone at the Gathering for their support and friendship over the years, and I wish the program and its director, Jim Magill, continued success!
Next summer, the new program, called the Cedar Run Song Workshops, will meet for the first time at the Seven Oaks Pathwork Center in Madison, Virginia from July 8th through July 13th. As of this date, the staff will include Pierce Pettis, Kate Campbell, Tom Kimmel, and Brooks Williams, with more to follow. Watch this space for future announcements, or go to the Cedar Run website at, where I'll keep posting information as the program develops. Within the next few weeks, it will be possible to register for next summer's workshops (and take advantage of early bird discounts on tuition) - more information will be forthcoming, both on this site and on the Cedar Run site. If you have questions or comments, please send me an email. I'd love to hear from you! Best, Eric

Swannanoa Gathering - August 7, 2006

I just got back from the 2006 Contemporary Folk Week at the Swannanoa Gathering, and though I haven't caught up on my sleep yet, it was, as always, a wonderfully energizing experience. I had a great group of folks on my staff this year, including Kate Campbell, Tom Kimmel, Tom Prasada-Rao, Bernice Lewis, Amy Fradon, Siobhan Quinn, Deidre McCalla, Brooks Williams, and Doc and Jean Russell. Also along for the week were Cindy Novelo, Mae Robertson, Greg Trafidlo, Rachel Cross, and Ray Chesna.
We had a bumper crop of new students with us this year, and it was great to see them as well as to catch up with old friends who've been with us before. A special thanks to my performance class members for a wonderful week. They were a great group of folks, and we learned a lot from each other.
My performance class this year was called "Between the Tunes," and it focused on those spaces between the songs. In class, we worked on developing song introductions of various kinds; we also worked on set construction and flow, as well as the use of silence as a performance tool. I'm looking forward to bringing this workshop to conference venues and other programs in the future.
My book on performance is also finally under way, thanks to the gentle prodding of my agent and booker, Kathy Moran. I'm not brave enough to forecast a completion date, but putting it out here may give me some of the pressure that I need to get it done.
If you're a singer, songwriter, or just someone who loves original music, the Contemporary Folk Week program at the Swannanoa Gathering will be a great experience for you. You can get more information about it at
When I've caught up on that sleep, I'll write some more about the Gathering experience! Best, Eric

July 2006 - July 19, 2006

Boy, it's hot here in the Northeast! Getting ready to head out for the Swannanoa Gathering, and polishing Ferd Piccuirro's new CD...also working on some additional tunes for a project by Massachusetts singer/songwriter Sue Choquette.
Just found out that I'll be opening a show for old friends Aztec Two Step next April at the Stone Soup coffeehouse in Pawtucket, RI. It will be great to get back to Stone Soup and to see Rex and Neal again. If you're in teh area, don't miss it!
Last month, I had some conversations with Maria Sarro from a great program called Bach to Rock that's aimed at teenagers who are getting on their rock and roll shoes. The program looks great, and I'm looking forward to being very much involved in it in the next few months. More news on that as things develop!
Went to see the great John Hiatt last weekend - what a fabulous show. The North Mississippi All-Stars opened and then backed John up. WOW! Guitar player Luther Dickinson (sp?) is absolutely incredible...and he's a real young player who handles slide and straight playing equally well.
A new CD coming out next month from Ray LaMontagne...that will heat things up in August all right!
Darryl Scott was at the Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival last weekend, kind of in our backyard. I heard a radio interview that he did, and he played a tune called "Blame It On Hank Williams." Search it out and buy it - it's classic!
Some new plans have developed for one of the concert series that I run - this one in Hyde Park, NY at the Hyde Park Free Library. We'll be presenting a very full calendar of great musical events next season, covering some great touring acts, as well as a bunch of great folks from New York's Hudson Valley. We're adding a monthly song circle to the schedule as well, so bring your guitar and come on out. To be put on the email list for the Library's shows, just write to us at

'S all for now. Best, Eric

Looking Toward the Summer - May 25, 2006

It's been a busy winter. I've spent a lot of time working a producer/engineer on a new project for New Jersey singer/songwriter Ferd Picuirro. It's been a pleasure to work with Ferd's material, which is very thoughtful and tuneful music. He's been nice enough to ask me to do some playing on the CD, too, so I've been having a great time dusting off my Strat and my drum set - I've even been doing some keyboard work, something that I love to do. Ferd's project should be out toward the end of the summer. Look for it!
Simmering on the studio stove also is a project with Massachussets singer/songwriter Sue Choquette. I had the great pleasure of producing and engineering Sue's debut CD, and we've done the work for a second one as well. Recently, she finished up the writing of the last three tunes for the new CD, and I'll be getting to work on those before the month is out.
Looking ahead toward summer, I'll be heading south again to the Swannanoa Gathering's Contemporary Folk Week, where I'm the coordinator. (I'll also be teaching a performance class this year that focuses on the time "between the tunes." We'll look at how to come up with good song introductions, how to pace a good show, how to establish (and maintain!) a good relationship with the audience, and other topics of use to performers. My staff for this summer is an especially exciting one, including Brooks Williams, Kate Campbell, Deidre McCalla, Tom Kimmel, Amy Fradon, Siobhan Quinn and Michael Bowers, Tom Prasada Rao, Ray Chesna, Mae Robertson, Cindy Novelo, Greg Trafidlo, Rachel Cross, and the inimitable Doc and Jean Russell - and more! You can get more information about the Contemporary Folk Week program at the Swannanoa Gathering's website at
The two concert series that I run had good seasons, too. Both the Carriage Barn Acoustic Music Series (New Canaan, CT) and the Hyde Park Free Library Living Room Concert Series had successful seasons, and I'm hard at work getting the schedules together for next year. If you would like to be on the email list for either of these venues, you can do so by writing to (New Canaan) or (Hyde Park).
Come fall, I'll be poking around New England and New York state. Hope we can get together for a show! Keep checking here for scheduling info. See you on the road. Best, Eric

Swannanoa Gathering Gears Up for '06 - November 9, 2005

I'm hard at work putting together the staff for our 2006 Contemporary Folk Week. I'll be celebrating my fourteenth year with the Gathering this year!
Keep a watch on this spot, and I'll keep you up to date on who'll be with us this year as our staffing "puzzle" falls together.

Heartland Music Concert - November 3, 2005

On October 29, I had the pleasure of doing a concert in Webster, NY for the Heartland Music folks. Webster is just outside of Rochester, and it was a beautiful day for the drive. The Heartland folks have their concerts in a restored Grange hall in Webster - it's a great old building, and a lovely room to play in...a nice, roomy stage with lights and great sound, and a choice of green rooms!
All of the volunteers at Heartland were wonderful to work with, and I especially enjoyed meeting Ralph and Judy, who run the series. The food was wonderful, the audience was great, and I can't wait to go back.
A special pleasure of the evening was to see my old friend, Rochester's own Maria Gillard - a superb singer and songwriter whose first album I had the pleasure of producing back in the Eighties. Check out Maria's music whenever you get a chance!

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