I'm home from Atlanta! Wow, Called To Be a Living Voice was amazing! I composed a new song for the event, "For Such A Time As This," based on the text from the Book of Esther.
Some people have been asking me about singing/playing it. I've uploaded the sheet music, so please feel free to check it out and give it a try! Here's the link to the sheet music PDF. If you decide to sing it with your group or at your event, you can license the song from CCLI, or better yet, directly from me HERE at my licensing and copyright page.
I had a blast last month playing shows across Minnesota with Walter Salas-Humara! On the afternoon of our show in Duluth I stopped by KUMD radio to perform on their Live from Studio A series.
The audio is archived at the KUMD website...stream the audio HERE. Host Christine Dean asked some excellent questions and I performed "Helicopters of Love," "Home Unknown," and "The Serious Kind."
ALSO: check out this review of my LOOK UP album in the Duluth News Tribune newspaper!
I'm really excited to get back on the road in May, after spending the past couple months laying low in Minneapolis. I'll be zipping across Michigan, flying out to the Pacific Northwest and coming back to the Midwest in June to play my official hometown release show for my new LOOK UP album!
Visit my TOUR DATES page for complete venue information.
introducing the CREATIVITY DRILL PODCAST!
I'm very exited to announce the launch of my first-ever adventure in podcasting!
Just import the episodes into your smartphone and take us along with you on your morning commute, on the treadmill at the gym, or on your next road trip or plane ride! Podcasts are also very good for listening while washing dishes or raking leaves.
This month Finnish-Americans will be celebrating St. Urho's Day (Monday, March 16th) so I'm offering up this song as a free download. It's a brand new recording, fresh from the studio only a couple weeks ago!
This Finnish folk tune has been widely recorded in Finland with an alternate set of love-song lyrics called "Tuoll' on mun kultani" ("Yonder My Sweetheart"). Nordic-American Lutherans have sung this tune for nearly a century using the "Lost In The Night" text translated into English by Olav Lee, a Norwegian-American pastor and professor at St. Olaf College in Minnesota.
If you've seen me in concert in the past decade, there's a good chance you heard me play this song. I'm very excited to finally have it recorded!
THE LOOK UP ALBUM IS RELEASED!
After a year of recording, crowdfunding, preparing, and road-testing, I'm thrilled to officially release my new record!
Please support me by purchasing the album:
or, even better, direct from my own online store.
If you'd rather mail-order the old fashioned way and pay by check, CLICK HERE and print the order form.
Thanks to so many of you who have been encouraging me along the way. I have poured my heart and soul into these songs, and I want to be part of the soundtrack to your 2015!
FREE DOWNLOAD! In honor of the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, I've posted this previously unreleased recording which you can download now for free at my BandCamp page. This is one of my earliest compositions, written when I was a teenage geo-political rocker. I recorded this updated version five years ago for the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Wall, but the song remained unreleased. Finally, here it is!
MORE VIDEOS AT YOUTUBE! Last month I played a plethora of shows across the Midwest, including a series of gigs with my great friend and long-time collaborator, percussionist Lowell Michelson. Here we are doing an unplugged version of "Rynkô," a tune from the debut Kaivama album. Also, CLICK HERE for a video from the Folk Alliance Region Midwest conference, where I got to sing and play with Trish Bruxvoort Colligan.
VARIOUS ALBUM APPEARANCES
This past year I've had the pleasure of contributing to a variety of recording projects by other artists. This month a few of those albums will get wide releases! Here are three of them...
In addition to a bunch of solo-acoustic shows this month, I'm very psyched to be playing a series of duo concerts with percussionist Lowell Michelson!
You may know Lowell from our very earliest days on the road, or from his touring with the band Echelon, OR from his countless appearances on my albums over the years. Lowell is one of my favorite musicians and bestest pals, and I hope you can check us out: OCT 7-10.
Zero Hour Records in Australia has just released Power Pop Unplugged, a double-CD compilation of artists from around the world playing acoustic versions of their New Wave faves from bands such as Cheap Trick, XTC, Rockpile, Nick Lowe, and The Romantics. I'm thrilled to appear on this album, doing my own mandola-and-harmonium powered interpretation of the Todd Rundgren / Utopia classic "One World!" Order the album HERE for a special introductory price of $6 (plus shipping)!
In recent weeks I've been interviewed by various media outlets regarding my forthcoming LOOK UP album, my recent tour dates, and my crowdfunding experience. Check out the interviews below:
- Tips for a successful PledgeMusic campaign, via PledgeMusic blog
- Singer sets aside folk to rock out on new CD, via LaCrosse Tribune
- Now Hear This: Jonathan Rundman, via Petoskey News Review / Graphic
In 2004 Beki Hemingway and I recorded and released our Americana duet album Tennesota! This month we're celebrating the album's 10 year anniversary. We have only 20 copies of the CD left, and we're making them available now in a special $15 bundle: a signed copy of Tennesota, a Salt Lady Records Extra Credit sampler CD featuring rare Beki & Jonathan songs, AND a download card for the out-of-print Beki & Jonathan Christmas EP Present. Click here to order!
SEPTEMBER TOUR DATES!
Upper Michigan, Lower Michigan, and California! Details at my dates page.
- FRI 12 Rapid River, MI
- SAT 13 Petoskey, MI
- SUN 14 Lake Ann (Traverse City), MI
- MON 15 Sault Ste Marie, MI
- SAT 27 Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
- SUN 28 Manhattan Beach, CA
I've got some cool dates developing across the Midwest this Fall and Winter. Specifically, I'd love to find a couple dates in Ohio early next month, near St. Louis on OCT 26, and in the U.P. on JAN 30.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you've got ideas for towns, venues, hosts, or events where I should play!
'Twas great to see old and new friends on my East Coast tour last week! Now in August I'm excited to be zipping across the Midwest for a weekend of shows with fiddle/mandolin phenom Jake Armerding! Check us out on FRIDAY, AUGUST 8 in Madison, WI; SATURDAY, AUGUST 9 in Peoria, IL; and SUNDAY, AUGUST 10 in Cedar Rapids, IA in a special performance with Trish Bruxvoort Colligan!
So that you can more conveniently find out when I'll be playing in your neighborhood, I'm trying a new online platform for my tour dates. Check out my bandsintown.com page...there you can click the "Track This Artist" box for updates when I'm in your area, share specific shows across social media, RSVP, buy tickets, and more.
Some fun behind-the-scenes photos (including this one of my harmonium load-in!) are featured in a recent article in the Wisconsin State Journal. Back in June during Walter Salas-Humara's Midwest tour, our Madison show was covered by a reporter who was profiling the awesome venue Kiki's House of Righteous Music.
In other press-related news: Jake Armerding and I were interviewed by the Peoria News Bulletin in advance of this Saturday's show...read the interview here!
On Sunday, August 3rd, WUSB radio in Long Island, NY, broadcasted an hour-long special interview with singer/songwriter Brent Bourgeois in support of his new album Don't Look Back. I was very happy to contribute to the interview myself...I spoke with the host about Brent's guest vocal appearance on my forthcoming LOOK UP album. This streaming-audio link can be opened in iTunes...listen around 28:00 for my comments, and then hear an exclusive preview of my yet-to-be-released song "Northbound Traffic" featuring Brent's harmonies.
I'm very excited to be traversing the continent in the coming months! Visit my DATES page for specific info...
LISTEN FOR ME ON NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO THIS MONTH
Last Fall I had the amazing opportunity to perform live on NPR's Mountain Stage radio show. Joining me were the brilliant Jake Armerding on fiddle/mandolin and Matt Patrick on electric guitar. Performing on the same show were favorites of mine songwriter Jill Sobule and Midwestern rock legends the BoDeans, complete with Kenny Aronoff on drums. Incredible!
This month, in the week after July 18th, NPR will be re-broadcasting the episode! Check your local Public Radio listings, and tune in to hear me sing the folk song "Stagger Lee" with fellow Finnish-American Minnesotan guitarist Erik Koskinen, Kurt from the BoDeans, and Kenny playing drums...a highlight of my career!
INTERNATIONAL PUBLISHING NEWS Songwriter and publisher Robin Mann has provided liturgical resources to Lutheran congregations in Australia for decades. I'm very pleased to announce that Robin's latest published compilation ALL TOGETHER ALL RIGHT features three of my songs: the atmospheric "Calm The Storm," the trucker-Gospel "No One Does The Things My Lord Can Do," and the audience fave "Hey Hey Samuel." It's so cool to think of people on the other side of the globe singing my songs! Visit Robin's webpage and check out his resources for church musicians.
I'm super psyched to be the guest keyboardist for Walter Salas-Humara on his solo Midwest tour this week. Walter is one of my all-time favorite songwriters (you may know him from his band The Silos), and he's also the producer of my 2004 album Public Library.
We've had some shows already, and have a few more to go:
TUES, JUNE 3: Aster Cafe, Minneapolis
FRI, JUNE 6: Schuba's, Chicago, IL, with Jon Langford
The Lutheran camps in South Dakota have produced an album of songs they sing at campfires...and they've included a couple tunes that I wrote! Thanks, Dakotans! Check out their Songs We Love album at Bandcamp.
STUDIO ADVENTURES: I'm very pleased to have contributed accordion, harmonica, Wurlitzer electric piano, and pre-production consulting for the brand new album WILD ACRE by Trish Bruxvoort-Colligan. Preview Trish's beautiful new songs here:
The crowdfunding campaign for my new album LOOK UP has passed the 100% milestone!
Thanks so much to all of you who have pledged so far...my album will now be funded!
This is not the end, however! Pledges will still be received until early May, so you still have time to pre-order the album...you'll receive the download (and even the CD if you'd like!) next month, and your Summer 2014 road-trip soundtrack will be ready to rock. CLICK HERE to visit my PledgeMusic site, read about my album, watch the invitation video, and check out the options for pledging.
These past few months have found me spending a lot of time in the studio! In addition to recording my new album, I've had the pleasure of playing sessions for other artists. Recently I played accordion for the new album by East Coast folk songwriter Robbie Schafer...and his album Ruby has now been released! Check it out on iTunes and listen for me playing on the lovely song "Hole In The Sky."
WINTERTIME MEDIA COVERAGE: I got interviewed in the Living Lutheran blog regarding my music and my support of the ELCA's World Hunger program. Also, I appeared as a guest on the Things That Matter podcast where I talked about this collaboration.
Big big big big news! I'm recording a new album entitled LOOK UP, and I'm using PledgeMusic.com as a platform for funding the project. CLICK HERE to visit my Pledge site!
Over the past year I've had a crowdfunding conversion experience. I've shared these thoughts on my BLOG.
Just announced! On SATURDAY, DECEMBER 28th, 2013 I'll be the opening act for THE BoDEANS here in Burnsville, MN! I'm super excited to play a show with one of my most formative bands, especially since the glorious Kenny Aronoff will be playing drums with them! I'd love to see you at the show…tickets are $40 and $45 reserved seating. Show information HERE.
I've been doing a ton of studio sessions this Fall, and it's been a great pleasure. There will be super-cool guest appearances unveiled in the new year, and here are some just-released projects that you can sample immediately! I played piano and vintage Stringvox keyboard on the Storm Home compilation of liturgical music, and I sang on Richard Bruxvoort-Colligan's new collection of Psalm settings.
(Hey, BTW, if you're working on a recording, you could possibly hire me to sing/play on your project! Email me at email@example.com to share your idea…)
Ten years ago I was wrapping up the tracking for what would become the Public Library album, produced by the brilliant Walter Salas Humara and featuring The Silos. In celebration of that musically momentous occasion, I'm releasing a deluxe digital edition of the album, available at my BandCamp page. In addition the original album's 11 songs, you'll receive 6 bonus tracks including the acoustic demo of "Librarian," an alternate take of "Second Language," and the shelved first version of "Smart Girls" (recorded in a key too low for me to sing)! Check out the audio streaming below...
Autumn, my favorite season! I've got some very unusual and cool musical appearances coming up:
On THURSDAY, OCTOBER 17th I've been invited to play my tune "Norman Borlaug Polka" at the World Food Prize Laureate Ceremony, held at the State Capitol Building in Des Moines, IA! I've recorded a brand new Acoustic Trio version of the tune....check it out, and download it for $1.
Those of you in Iowa can tune in live at 7PM and watch the ceremony live on Iowa Public Television!
Then, during the week following October 25th I'll be appearing on the National Public Radio program Mountain Stage! Click here to check your local NPR station for the show's airdate and time, and listen in! It was a thrill to share the bill with amazing artists like Jill Sobule and the BoDeans. Here's a video preview of "Libarian" from that episode of Mountain Stage, recorded live during the show's taping a few weeks ago: