Open mics

Chris and I have never been driven to perform—we don’t crave the experience of playing for an audience—but from the very beginning we saw that playing music for other people was the fastest path to improvement, and we’ve always been driven to improve.

In April 2003 we had our mountaintop experience at Pete Wernick’s Merlefest jam camp, and came away fired up to be real musicians. Maybe the best thing we did just before leaving that camp was to sign up for another one, just seven short weeks away, being held in Morehead KY. The need to prepare for that camp kept us quite focused for nearly two months, establishing a pattern that has continued on.

Just after the Morehead camp we discovered that there was a bi-weekly open mic on Sunday afternoons at a nearby state park. Putting together some short performances seemed like the right next step to take, so we signed up.

So here are a couple of pictures from our very first public performance.


Fourteen year old Chris had just gotten his CA composite guitar, which still serves him well eight years later.


The electric bass I played was replaced by an upright acoustic the following January.


These folks were almost certainly dancing to the bluegrass band featured that day, not us! Eleven-year-old Maggie is at the left, in a long red skirt.


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