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Lisa Bigwood News and Personal Pictures


October 18, 2011

Hi everyone!
Well, here it is, autumn. This year it seemed to me as if summer had just really arrived, and then, zoom, it was fall. I am getting used to the idea now. A crackling fire in the woodstove goes a long way towards encouraging my acceptance of the inevitable turning of the year.

"Intrepid" has been enjoying airplay on Folk Radio shows across the US since it was released in late June of 2010, and reached # 20 on the Folk DJ list top 100 in the summer of 2010.

I am currently working on a new CD. It's close to finished as I write this, in October 2011. We do not have a release date yet, but I sure will let everyone know as soon as there is one.

I've got a few shows coming up….hopefully I'll see you there!


News update 4/29/2011

Lisa will be the featured artist on The Hootenanny Cafe Mini Concert, hosted by Jon Stein. Sunday, May 1 at 8PM (est) on WTBQ or locally (Orange County area) on 93.5FM

News update 4/15/2010

I am playing a radio show Sunday night, April 18, 2010. Check it out! it will be streaming so you can listen in.
"The Folk Show"
w/host Gene Shay
Sunday night 8-11

88.5 WXPN

88.1 WXPH

90.5 WKHS

Lehigh Valley

News update 3/24/10

Well, first the newest news! I am scheduled to make a live appearance on Gene Shay’s Folk Show, on WXPN in Philadelphia, Sunday evening, April 18th. I am thrilled about this, just thrilled. Gene Shay has been dedicated to getting folk music out to it’s rightful home, the folks who love it, for many years.It is truly an honor to be invited onto his show. I am very grateful, and looking forward to it.

Lisa BigwoodSpeaking of honors, this coming Friday, the 26th of March, I will be performing alongside Anne Hills and Connie Deming, at the Lakeshore Coffee House.(At the Lakeshore Community Church, 8 PM, 3651 Latta Rd, North Greece, NY) I’ll tell you, I just LOVE shows that are “songwriters in the round”. To get to play music and listen to other people’s songs is just heavenly, for me.

Our CD Release Party was absolutely wonderful! LOTS of folks turned out to celebrate with us….our wonderful band of musicians came from near and far and were just fabulous. What a wonderful, wonderful, memorable evening. I really can’t find a way to say how special it all was. Those of us who were involved in putting the show on all had a blast!

It’s amazing how many people worked so hard to make the evening such a grand success. All the musicians, of course, and: my sisters, Karen (known as the “Wildcat” sister to those of you who have heard my song Wildcat) on baked goods and Susie (who does now use a computer and a microwave, but she held out as long as she could) on baked goods, beverages, coolers, ice, and last minute store runs. There was Benji Carr as Coffeeguy, Cindy Reichard on set-up and flowers and ambiance, and my daughter Sa working the video camera. Maria Gillard and Jed Curran (both wonderful songwriters and musicians, by the way) were in charge of the “merchandise”. All of these kind, hardworking friends helped with cleanup and ambience- removal. Dave Reichard and Ray Sommerville ran the sound, since my usual audio wizard was playing bass and Hammond organ. “Doing” sound frequently includes hauling a LOT of heavy stuff, trouble-shooting it, setting it up, trouble-shooting it again, and then being on top of things through the entire performance, making the musicians sound as good as possible. But mostly, they make certain that all the folks in the audience can hear every word. Without good sound….the music doesn’t even happen, in a large room like that.

And Bob Potter, who set the entire event up, lined up the musicians, and did….everything to bring us all there, to sing those songs, on that night, at that moment.

My heartfelt thanks go out to each and every one who helped, and to all the folks who intrepidly (sorry~I couldn’t help myself) found their way to Stage 13 and were there to help us celebrate!

I’ll keep you posted with any new happenings…..I was going to say “see you on the radio,” but….I can’t bring myself to do it.

News update 2/7/10

We’re working on getting this new CD out to more people and places. Very fun. It is already being played on Folk Radio in areas from Santa Cruz, CA, to Chicago, IL, to Philadelphia, PA.

Our CD release party plan is in the works!! It will be March 6, Saturday, at 7 pm, in Canandaigua NY at Finger Lakes Community College’s Stage 13.

This show will include some fun musicians, all of whom played on the CD as well, bless them:

Jim "Jimmy Steel" Duvall on pedal steel ( pedal steel for heaven's sake! I am so excited! ) (er, I mean, that might be fun.)

Tracy Grammer on violin and vocals (yes, Tracy the songwriter/recording artist/keeper of Dave Carter songs Grammer)

See video of Lisa Bigwood
and the Washday Band
performing at House of Hamez in Rochester NY

More YouTube Videos

Lisa Bigwood performing original songs

Lisa Bigwood performs Airstream Dreams

Jim Henry on acoustic and electric guitar, mandolin and dobro (the Jim Henry who tours with Tracy G ~see above~and is a songwriter/recording artist and certainly one of the most requested gig and session players in New England, and a producer, in fact he produced my friend Maria Gillard's wonderful CD "Bound To Happen")

Tristan Greene on percussion and drums ... he plays with the bands Doja and The Scandals, and when I first met him some years ago, I believe he was in high school, he came up to me after a show and said, "I really like the way you use dynamics." And I'm thinking...what...wait....who IS this kid?? :) Luckily, I found out! Also luckily, I had learned what "dynamics" meant, probably not too long before that.

Len Ortenzi on harmonica... he hangs out teaching college physics most of the time, napping on beds of nails and shattering glasses with sound, you know, all that old physics stuff, until he gets an OK harp gig.

Bob Potter on Hammond B3 organ and acoustic bass...Bob has worked in the music field for ~ well, for a while~ and has worked with and toured with many , many amazing musicians and performers. (I lost count of the times I've heard, "how come you got so lucky, to work with the best-ears-in-the-business all the time??" ) He produced and engineered "Intrepid", and in addition, waters the plants, stacks wood (seriously, the guy can STACK that firewood!) and does dishes. In fact, he also goes by the name, "Dish Guy".

Elaine Verstraete on upright bass...let's see, Elaine, in her spare time, is an award-winning artist and illustrator, tennis star, bass player and vocalist with Brooke Pevear (as part of the duo Birds-On -A-Wire), and cat-feeder extraordinaire! She also teaches me a lot with her dedicated, focused approach to learning.

Somehow all these amazing people found time in their lives to rehearse, record, listen and share their gifts with me, and now to share them with all of you. I am sure the universe loves me.

Lisa BigwoodThat's the scoop. The day after the CD party I'll be travelling to Northampton, MA, where I will open for Brooks Williams at the Iron Horse Music Hall. Keep an eye on the show schedule….I’m also opening for Mark Erelli, who is a fabulous songwriter, on Feb. 19th in Rochester, NY.

I played a wonderful show in Roulette, PA, a few weeks ago. It was a magical day and night there, we made many new friends, saw some wonderful music, and I was a panel member of a songwriting workshop.

If you’ve never been to the Coudersport, PA area….(the town next to Roulette) it is beautiful there….mountains and hills, wild….my favorite kind of place. The folks we stayed with had a wonderful little guest cabin, an entire tiny house with everything you need. We got there in the darkness, settled in for the night, and awoke to see that we were way back in the hills, with mist all around… was gorgeous. Thanks to Eppie and Joe and Arowyn…..also to Jakob’s Hollow Band, our hosts….who also took us out for breakfast before we headed home.

Really, it doesn’t get better than that. Every once in a while I think about how if it were not for making up a few songs, I would not know anyone I know except my family, I would not live where I live, or do what I do. It is incredible.

November 11, 2009

CD coverMy new CD, Intrepid, is to be delivered today, as I write this. I just checked the tracking number; it is “in transit.” It has been a long project, as you all know, a real labor of love and of a community of musicians and friends and family.
How much I learned… we learned, I can’t even tell you.

I have been thinking of this recording for the last few years as being like the “sailboat in the backyard” project. It started to seem like it might be that, an ongoing dream to sustain me. Which, I realized, was a wonderful thing, if that’s what it was to be, and I began to just enjoy the creation of it, and the people I met and grew to know along the way. I stopped apologizing for it taking so long, and I stopped feeling bad about that. I saw how each twist in the road or end of a plan eventually had some apparent reason, usually, if I could just believe that it did.

So, when I go home this evening, if those boxes are there on the porch, it will be…
what? A time to sit on the porch with the animals and stare at cardboard boxes for a bit, I imagine.

And if the boxes of CDs aren’t there? I will be believing that there is some reason why they are not supposed to be.
I will hope I am lucky enough to get to see what that is, and I will watch for it.

I will work on the next CD, oh yes, the next leg of the ongoing dream that sustains me. The dream that these songs I live in will touch you too, and somehow connect us, like holding hands through the scary things or laughing and beaming through the joyful things. I’m not sure why I am so convinced that this connection is everything. But I am.

Anyway, back to the boxes I am picturing now, in my mind, on the grey-painted porch floor, stacked up in the dark November evening, probably next to the firewood that is also stacked there. If they’re there, if they’re not, either way, I’ll sit for a bit, and then
go in and feed the dogs and cats, wash the dishes, and do some laundry.

I’ll be at the Northeast Regional Folk Alliance Conference this weekend, and I’ll be playing a showcase on Saturday night.

I’ll be starting a blog on this website soon…..oh, no, I know…..look out. Once I start with the words, I’m in another world.

March 23, 2008

Well, I don’t mean to tease you all because I know you’ve been waiting a while for my new CD to come out, but lots of folks have asked about the status of the project. It is in the final stages of production and I am very excited and happy with it.

"dang poor sleddin"

We have another CD in production, with my band, which will be in the wings to follow this one, and one in the planning stages for after that. 

I tell everyone we’re like those folks who build a boat in their barn for, like, decades. It is fascinating to have such a long-term, ongoing project. I mean, it can kind of ( !! ) drive you buggy at times, but I see what a blessing it is. How it really is a manifestation of hope. This is like our quilt, our novel, our beautiful sailboat. Our hope chest.

When you take into account the lives of Bob Potter, who is producing and recording the project, and me, and all the players, it will be the culmination of so many years of deep love for songs, and lyrics, and music. And believe me, that is audible.
I will keep you informed, and when we can estimate a release date, I’ll let you know.

I have had a band since early 2007. It includes John “Mandoboy” Denniston on mandolin, Tom “T Bone” Farley on guitar, and Elaine “Practicegirl”  Verstraete on upright bass. (Yes, I have a groovy nickname, too. It is Lisa “Ijustwrite‘em” Bigwood.) Our sound is kind of a bluegrassy, but not entirely, a little old time-ish, maybe, but not exactly…

It sounds like…. well, us, having a fabulous time, getting to play music together, and getting gotten.

We are working on a name for the band. We had one at first, but it turned out to be already taken. And I was so proud of having come up with a clever name all by myself. Heh. I’ll let you know when the name is decided upon.

Nov, 2007

We're at work in the recording studio on CD number 3. The project has taken longer than I anticipated, not because it's not going well, but actually because it's going SO well...some wonderful musicians have offered to play on it, and some intriguing song selections have made themselves known through popular choice...this is going to be our CD, yours and mine, because listeners have really helped shape what goes on it, and on the next CD as well.

When I say "listeners," I do not say it casually, by the way. I cannot begin to tell you what it means to me as a songwriter to know that so many people really listen to and care deeply about what these songs say. 

I am very moved by the subject matter of the songs folks are requesting...some of them are just overwhelmingly asked for, in a wide variety of places. People are wanting to hear some true but sometimes hard things said out loud. As you may know, that is a pet cause of mine, but I didn't know so many others felt the same.

I see it as an honor that folks take the time to listen to my songs, and I am committed to treating that honor with respect.

"good sleddin"

I recently had the extreme honor and pleasure of opening for Robert Bradley and his Blackwater Surprise, and also for the amazing Sonny Landreth…wow!!

My music is getting airplay in California, Nevada, Wyoming and Idaho, in addition to the Chicago area, and I have been informed that some tunes are being covered and requested in steamy New Orleans, which warms my shivering heart up here in the glacial north !!

WFMT, Chicago's "The Midnight Special", one of the oldest and most respected folk radio shows in the country, broadcast a live one-hour special "Folkstage" featuring my songs. This show has gone into syndication and is being played across the country.

WFMT DJ Rich Warren, Host/producer of WFMT Radio's The Midnight Special and Folkstage, CD reviewer for Sing Out!, and contributor to Sound & Vision magazine: "I was driving along and heard this gorgeous voice. I thought, oh, yeah, it's about time, the rest of the world has finally discovered Lisa. Then I heard myself announcing the song and realized it was the Folkstage segment, in syndication!"

DJ Clytia Fuller of KZSC 88.1 FM, Santa Cruz, California, in a message to folk and bluegrass DJs across the country:

My daughter Sarah took this picture...I don't know what she was saying to me, but it was apparently funnier than "say cheese!" She may have been calling, "Makeup! We have a little shine here!"

"My favorite act at Falcon Ridge (folk festival) was someone not even on stage. I was listening to music broadcast over the loudspeakers Friday night, suddenly perked up and said, 'WHO is that'?

Her voice was awesome and haunting. The CD she gave me is GREAT. Sultry voice, sparely produced, finely-crafted songs. GOOD songwriting! I encourage you to check her out."

This, my own official web site, is big news! As you may have seen, there’s lots of mention of me on the web if you give me a google, but this is the first site of my own. Yay!! If you read my bio, you may find the style a bit different from the traditional musician bio. I wanted a real “biography”, however brief. See what you think.

I’m exploring various distribution methods for when this new CD is released, so that it will be widely available, to everyone. Some really exciting options are being presented to me, and I’ll keep you all posted when I decide how it will be done.

Meanwhile, I’m playing, writing, honing my chops, sharpening my claws, so that when I’m out there performing live, I’ll be worthy of your time listening.



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