April 29, 2013
From the department of “good girls go to heaven and bad girls go to Italy”…
Just had to share this photo, sent by one of my best friends, of the “band wives” on the night of the first of two shows that my band “the Americani” played earlier this month in the village of Cison di Valmarino in the province of Treviso (Veneto).
That’s Tracie P, second from right.
Now do you see why guys like me learn how to play guitar? ;)
April 27, 2013
If you get the reference in the title, you’re as sad as we are.
If you don’t, you don’t know what you’ve been missing…
Rest in peace, George Jones.
BTW, Beaumont, Texas, where he lived (and not far from where he was born), is just a few towns west of Orange, Texas, where Tracie P grew up.
April 25, 2013
My home office is also my recording studio. And when my bandmates are in town and we’re working, writing, and recording, Georgia P LOVES to come visit with us in the studio…
One of the greatest joys of my life is sharing music with our daughter and living in a home filled with melody and rhythm…
April 22, 2013
Verena (above, holding Georgia P on her lap) has been in town since Tuesday (we’ve been hanging, cooking, and writing and recording songs together at Baby P studios).
With the weather so beautiful right now in the River City (that’s Austin for all yall who ain’t never been to Texas), we just couldn’t resist a family outing yesterday to Chicken Shit Bingo with Dale Watson at (our favorite honkytonk) Ginny’s Little Longhorn Saloon.
Dale’s been playing in Austin and touring the world for more than twenty years, but his new album is bringing him into the fold of the mainstream. Check out this NPR interview he did for his new record release.
I’ve loved his music and his shows since Tracie P first turned me on to him the first time I came to Austin (nearly five years ago now!).
We hung out in the shade in the parking lot and Georgia P had a blast checking out the chickens in Ginny’s chicken coop (above) and all the little doggies that folks bring (it’s a bring-your-own-lawn-chair and get a tub of beer affair in the parking lot outside).
Here’s a little taste of what you missed if you weren’t able to make it yesterday…
April 15, 2013
Over the weekend, as I was editing the homey video above for the Bele Casel blog, I racked my brain (wine connoisseurs know the origins of this expression!) thinking about what kind of song I should write to accompany my little homemade film.
In the end, I just kept coming back to country, you know, that peaceful easy feeling that Proseccoland gives ya’…
Yeah, yeah, I know… for years, I denied being an Eagles fan. Only my therapist knew…
But a few years after I met Tracie P, a lot of heart-to-heart talks, and a mountain of 8-track tapes later, I realized it was okay to come out of the closet and tell the world: “World, I am an American and I’m an Eagles fan!”
Today, I feel confident enough with my country cred that I can admit it.
So there you have it…
I hope you enjoy the video and the music as much as I enjoyed tracking it yesterday…
April 5, 2013
Friends might writhe with envy if they knew how much I paid yesterday for a three-bottle lot of 1999 (classic) Barbaresco Giacosa white label.
I bought the bottles at a restaurant here in Proseccoland after I spied them on the list.
As the wine opened up, an initial brightness gave way to darker fruit and bigger tannin. The first bottle, we all agreed, although vibrant and fresh, showed more maturity, while the second had many years ahead of it. The sommelier had assured me that he bought his allocation on release and that it had remained cellared impeccably since. I was surprised by the bottle variation and thrilled, as always, by the wine.
Super fun to be here with my band and our families.
That’s the main dining room at the villa.
Show tonight and tomorrow at 10!
April 1, 2013
The “Americani” — above, my cover band from the 1990s — is reuniting to play two shows this week:
Friday and Saturday
April 5 and 6
10 p.m. both nights
Villa Marcello Marinelli
Cison di Valmarino
(Province of Treviso)
Both nights, we’ll be playing a set of americana covers, from Willie Nelson to Neil Young to Johnny “Guitar” Watson and Buddy Guy.
A ton of my winemaker friends are coming and everyone is welcome to BYOB (there will be some great bottles flowing).
Here’s the story of how it all came together back in the day.
Please come and rock out with us!
March 30, 2013
After I put the girls to bed at the hotel in Erbusco (Franciacorta) last night, Giovanni (above) took me to the coolest pub in Franciacorta, Andata e Ritorno Stazione di Provaglio d’Iseo, a functioning regionale train station (see video below, shot right outside the pub). Great selection of local, artisanal beers, super cool crowd, and awesome metal and classic rock playlist.
The place has the feel of train station circa 1965 (andata e ritorno means round trip in Italian).
Piadina with prosciutto, mozzarella, and salsa rosa.
I really dug owner Claudio Bertazzoli’s playlist of virtuoso metal: Satriani, Steve Vai, Pantera… This dude knows his shit and digs the shredding!
March 19, 2013
My Italian cover-band from the 1990s (from left), Shawn Amos, me, Charlie George, and John Krylow.
Charlie, John, and I went to high school together (Charlie and I go all the way back to Hebrew school). And Shawn and I met back in the 1990s when we appeared together in a Taco Bell commercial (for real).
We spent three summers in the early 1990s touring the sinistra Piave area artisanal beer festival and sagra circuit.
Our band is now called “The Americani” and we’ll be performing a set of americana covers on Friday and Saturday, April 5-6, at the Villa Marinelli in Cison di Valmarino (in Proseccoland).
The shows are free and the Prosecco and beer will be flowing. Show time is 10 p.m. both nights.
March 13, 2013
From the department of “it was twenty years ago today”…
My old friend and bandmate Shawn Amos (left) and I will be fronting our band “the Americani” Friday and Saturday April 5 and 6 at the Villa Marcello Marinelli in the heart of Proseccoland.
Both shows will take place at the Villa and showtime is 10 p.m. both nights.
We’ve got a wonderful set of americana lined up (think Howlin’ Wolf and Neil Young).
If you’re attending Vinitaly this year, come up and rock out with us before the fair (a ton of my winemaker friends are planning to come as are wine folks from the U.S.).
Tomorrow night (March 14) I’ll be working the floor at Sotto in Los Angeles, where we’re launching our new spring wine list (Tintilia del Molise, anyone?).
And Friday night (March 15), I’ll be pouring wine all evening and then, on the later side, appearing with my San Diego-based band, the Grapes (think Doug Sahm and Gram Parsons), at Jaynes Gastropub in San Diego.