Ithaca Porchfest 2013

Porchfest is a neighborhood festival where bands use porches as stages. It takes place each year in September for a full day of music and dance through the streets of Ithaca’s fall creek neighborhood. This year, over 100 bands spread out on porches across the neighborhood and rocked out as audiences walked, biked, and danced up and down the streets and sidewalks. From classical to roots rock to country to pop to reggae to punk rock and from Appalachian to Brazilian to Irish to Swedish to Zimbabwean, porchfest celebrates all types of music.
We played on a particularly special porch. It was the house that we first lived in together when I moved to Ithaca and the house that we started playing music in together! Coincidentally, at the very time that we moved out, one of our friends moved in. So, when Porchfest rolled around, our friend was kind enough to open the porch up to our music.
The weather was sunny and cool, our friends filled the street in front of the porch, and we blasted our tunes through three little amps. Porchfest is something I look forward every year as the summer ends. It is a sign of fall, a chance to share our music with new listeners, meet new people, discover new bands, and play on a porch! Who doesn’t want to rock out on a porch?!
Porchfest is catching on in other towns! See if your town is one of them or learn how to start one in your neighborhood! http://www.porchfest.org/porchfests-elsewhere/
at porchfest 2013

Great Vibes at The Nines!

Saturday night we played at one of our favorite venues, The Nines, in Ithaca NY. It is actually the very place where we met, about 5 years ago. (I think it was 5…maybe 6? this is too much math already 🙂 )

Anywhoo, a band called Schooner from Durham NC had contacted us about playing a show together on their ‘Neighborhood Veins’ album release tour. After checking out their music and digging it, we were psyched to share a bill with them.

at the nines sept 2013

We hadn’t been making it up to The Nines very much over the past year, so we thought, ‘Lets play there! Don’t you miss that place?’

It turned out to be the perfect location for Schooner and us to tear it up!  I’ve never been to a show there that didn’t have a great vibe. Not sure what it is. The people? The Pizza? (You must try the deep dish if you are ever in Ithaca!) It’s funny how some spaces and locations just don’t work. No matter how much people try to doctor a place up and re-brand, there is just something about it that is off. Then there are places that for no explainable reason just work. Something is special about them. The Nines is like that, it just feels good to be in that place.  We will definitely be playing there again!

Here is a clip of our Feist cover from the show, My Moon My Man.

Making Time for Music

Hello Blog! I am sorry to have left you unattended for so long!

Since my last post, we’ve recorded two songs that we’ve been slowly but surely taking our time on.  I didn’t expect us to take this much time, but I’m afraid I’ve spread myself so thin over too many other projects. Most of these are extra assignments at work, home improvements, a few family gatherings, and then those little ongoing obligatory chores.

And now, here I am. Almost an entire month later, with a couple of incomplete songs and a neglected blog! Which brings me to the point of this post.

I often meet musicians and artists who struggle to make time for their craft. (guilty here!) Months can turn into years that go by as creative endeavors sit on the side, waiting for attention. As the ideas keep collecting in our heads, our desire to see them develop into  visible or audible form grows. It grows!

I’ve found that making time for music and art is easy if you define to yourself what it is that you really want to achieve. I must remember to ask myself, ‘Okay, what projects do you want to see through?!?!’

Then, before signing up for everything from here to the moon, and saying yes to every invitation and favor that is asked, I must remember to ask myself ‘Do you really have time for this? What does your creative idea, the one that is burning a hole in your brain and crying for attention, have to say about this?!?!’

Here is what my little idea guy has been like for the past month:

finally“Seriously? What about me? I’m not asking for much here. You’ve gotta at least give me something.”

“Ten minutes a day? You can’t spare at least ten minutes a day? C’mon.”

“If you had to feed and walk me, like a real pet, I’d be dead dude. Lets get going on this.”

Soooooo, It’s time to give that patient little guy ( or girl 🙂 ) some love!

Eric Johnson at The Blue Note

Last weekend was the first weekend in a while that we didn’t have any shows booked, so we decided to get out of town for a little inspiration and catch Eric Johnson live at The Blue Note! We’ve been so busy lately running around with work and other projects, it was the perfect time to relax and go out for a band-date night.

eric johnson

At The Blue Note, we sank into our tightly packed seats and enjoyed superb music, tasty drinks and of course, each others company 🙂 It was just what we needed!

And we have a little list of guitar greats to see live that we’re slowly working on. Last year we saw Steve Vai in Rochester, and now we’ve got Eric Johnson checked off the list too. He laid down a great performance, accompanied by Mike Stern on guitar, Chris Maresh on bass, and Anton Fig on drums.

 

Exploring the things that inspire me to make music is teaching me so much about myself and how funny the mind works. Sometimes I just want to lock myself up in solitude and bust out songs that are piling up in my head, and other times I need a change of scenery to enjoy all of the beauty and art and music that surrounds me. Catching Eric Johnson live was a nice change of scenery, to take in and appreciate all of the amazing talent and experience and musical work of these guitar greats. Might I add, in this age of electronic music, DJs, etc (all stuff that I dooo love, but..) long live guitar! 🙂

 

Vox Pathfinder

Who says you can’t have two of the same thing? A few years ago, one of our friends let us borrow their Vox Pathfinder 15r, a solid state amp with 15W of power, an 8″ bulldog speaker, gain, gain boost, tremolo speed & depth, spring reverb, and 2 band EQ bass & treble. At only 18 lbs and a little over a foot tall, we were very impressed with the sound that came out of this little guy! After we returned the amp to its owner, we just had to get one of our own.

Now, about 3o shows and a year later, we realized that just one Vox Pathfinder is not enough. Its just too sweet of an amp. Hence, our recent addition to the family 🙂

vox
Say hello to #2!

Friday night gig!

Well, after all of our groovy Sunday sets since the birth of the Rungs, (we’re just over a year old now!), its about time for a Friday night gig! We will be hitting the stage at Lot 10 in Ithaca tonight with our local friends, The Fly Rods, and touring rockers, Sool. We have some friends in town who have been super supportive of our music and through them we were connected to Sool, who contacted us to open for them when they came through Ithaca on a summer mini tour. I feel so lucky to have such supportive friends! (I think it helps that they like our music too 🙂 ) And after the shaky performance last weekend, I’m hoping for an awesome night tonight. It’ll make for a perfect end to the week! Plus with this line-up, Fly Rods, Rungs, Sool, its just gonna be rockin with high-energy-dance-to-the-grooves-feel-good-vibes.

Sool sool

Sool: http://www.soolmusic.com/

The Fly Rods: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Fly-Rods

 

 

 

Elephant Talk Indie Music Festival 2013

Well it was another exciting weekend for us, and of course, it was filled with music!  indie talk posterWe made it down to Atlantic City for the 4th annual Elephant Talk Indie Music Festival. Elephant Talk Indie Music Magazine’s Jerry Ryan organizes the festival each year and brings indie bands together from NJ and surrounding areas to make some noise in two neighboring music venues, The Boneyard and Le Grand Fromage,  just a block away from the shore. The thing I love about Elephant Talk Indie events is how supportive the bands are of each other. It was great to see so many musicians come together and connect!

Now we didn’t play our best set ever, in fact it was our worst yet. Just prior, Diwas had been out of town recording music for one of his other projects and I had been working over-time a bit. By the time we set up at the festival, we hadn’t even rehearsed a Rungs song for two weeks (pretty much since g-roots)! To add to that, our electronics didn’t make the sound system very happy. But regardless, all shows must go on right!? And on it did. We had fun, and the folks in the audience were just radiating with positive vibrations that sent our tiredness and frustrations far out into the Atlantic Ocean somewhere. It’s so great to be surrounded by people who are in it for the music 🙂 plus we got to sign the Elephant Talk Indie guitar!

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Thank you Jerry Ryan and Elephant Talk Indie Music!

Thank you June!

Well, June began with a bang, (literally a ‘bang’ – flat tire on the way to Shindig in Brooklyn!) and closed with a mellow Sunday night set at Felicia’s in Ithaca. I’m so happy our friends, The Sunday Vipers, asked us to open for them. I mean, its an honor when anyone asks us to play with them. My reaction is always, ‘Really?! You want us to open for you??!! Yes!’ And then I am secretly flattered forever that they liked our music enough to share a bill together 🙂

This night was particularly special because I’m a huge fan of Sunday Vipers, AND the venue is practically my neighbor. Diwas and I just hop on out the door, guitars and amps in hand, and take about 20 steps to load in. The awesomeness of the night can further be summed up by fun music, delicious cocktails, good friends, a great audience and one new Rungs Facebook fan! (Yes, one. I will take what I can get!)

Here is a live song from the set! This is a new one. It’s called Indecisive. You’ll get what I mean 🙂

Thank you readers, thank you June (month of the supermoon!), and thank you Sunday Vipers for an awesome night!

Wild Weekends

I must provide a recap on our recent weekend adventure.

It started over a month ago, when a good friend asked Diwas to host one of the weekly open mic nights she organizes in a newly established Brooklyn music venue called Shindig. We love getting out of town and visiting our friends, so of course he agreed, and we put it on our calendar,   ‘a weekend in Brooklyn in June’.  It was May at the time, so adding something to the next month’s agenda felt like such a ways off. But boy does time fly! The weekend was here before we knew it and ended it up being the perfect time to get out of town.

We hit the road early Saturday morning only to get an unexpected surprise on the way….

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Our first band flat! I had never gotten a flat before, so I kind of thought it was exciting. The next surprise was that Diwas, a guy who I’ve never seen do much car work, got in there and successfully put on the spare like a pro. Definite road trip buddy! We were back on the road in no time 🙂

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We drove for about two hours with the little donut spare, and despite feeling extra nervous in the nyc tunnels, the ride was pretty smooth all the way to Shindig! Our luck returned when we got to the venue in time, found a parking spot right outside, and enjoyed a night of entertaining and diverse open mic performances. Here is some of the crew:

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close but no cigar

‘Front Desk Runaway’ is one of those songs that Diwas and I have been omitting from our set list. For some reason, something about it just didn’t sit well but we couldn’t pin point exactly what was wrong. So, we decided to avoid this song at our live shows, at least until we would have time to plop ourselves down and give it a good working out. As many of you songwriters know, some songs just don’t quite make the cut. We thought Front Desk Runaway would be one of our ‘close but no cigar’ songs.

Anyway, I’m not sure why we added it to our set last month at the Elephants for Autism Festival. We hadn’t changed anything since I first wrote it back in February, but I guess we both just missed it!

Turns out, we had a lot of fun playing it! So much fun that the song even creeped onto another set list, last Sunday’s show. Not to duplicate content, (I already posted the Front Desk Runaway from Elephants for Autism Festival), but here is a live video of the same song from our Chapter House show last Sunday. This neglected song just needs a little TLC!

Any other musicians out there with their own ‘close but no cigar’ songs??? Lets work on these babies!