Barry takes NERFA by storm (ha)

I spent the weekend along with Jesse Miller at the Northeast Regional Folk Alliance Conference. My second time. Last year was just feeling it out. It made a big impact on my musical journey. At once overwhelming and totally welcoming. I was determined to go once again this year in a curious investigative frame of mind. To avoid getting swept up in the marketing aspects which drive much of it and just hang out with lots and lots and lots of incredible musicians who also, by the way, tend to be really nice, welcoming people. Somehow this branch of music and songwriting which values poets and quirky authentic performers over catchy phrases and slick performance seems particularly approachable. And the folk tradition of singing and improvising together infuses much of the music, though this group as a whole is pretty far from traditional folk.

The experience of NERFA is the most intense combination of intimidation and motivation that I have ever had. Total reality check watching and sitting next to some of the best songwriters on the planet. Writing one truly great song would be a life’s dream for me – they write many. So the only conclusion is that I just can be the best teller of my story – not Joe Jencks, or Zoe Mulford, or Jonathan Byrd’s story. Being around them does strongly motivate me to improve and go deeper through my songwriting. And while yes, I spend lots of guerrilla showcases comparing myself to the other mortals, that is also inspiring. That so many people write songs is truly something to celebrate. And to recognize the intense satisfaction of singing with and to others – why wouldn’t everyone want to do that?

Studio Magic

Receiving Bob's mixed tracks every few days is better than any Christmas I've ever had. Just a treat of beautiful playing and singing. Jesse Miller is known for his guitar playing but wow -- what a singer. His voice just kills on this album. And the mix with Rima's clear soaring tones is pretty amazing. Not to mention Adam's double bass that just fuels the whole engine. 

Here's another tune from the album -- How the Bright Earth Spun Like a Jewel


Great show on WFUV

The show Christine Lavin put together was truly amazing -- what a fine collection of known and unknown singer songwriters and great songs. The whole three hours is great --
You can stream it for the next two weeks only from:
Sunday Supper Aug 5, 2018

It turns out the story Chris told me about how she found my song Drink at 4 (a friend who collects everything about 4's) was a fib -- she wasn't supposed to let people know that she was a judge for NERFA until the showcase winners were announced so when I asked her how she found my song she invented the story about the 4's. Pretty creative. Then we had a whole back and forth about the magical number four. Funny coincidence --- just before the show aired yesterday at 5pm Bob Sherman played Four Strong Winds by the Brothers Four. 

I'll be on WFUV this Sunday, Aug 5, 5-8pm

My song Drink at 4 (co-written with Larry Stallman) is going to be included in a radio show that Christine Lavin (a personal hero) is doing this Sunday. The lineup is wonderful and I'm thrilled to be included. Chris found the song by crazy serendipity because a friend of hers collects all things with the number 4. She thinks my song is the best #4 song out there (or at least to her taste). I might vote for Four Strong Winds but hey, I'll take it. Wow. And funny -- I've sent CD's and made calls to WFUV but I end up getting on that great Americana radio station because of the number 4. So much for marketing.
It's a really interesting group of songs and songwriters:
Here's the lineup and song order:

    TITLE                           ARTIST       TIME            ALBUM                    LABEL

1.  "The Genius Bar" - Julie Gold  3:54

2.  "Lucky Man" - Kyle Hancharick 4:03

3.  "Worth" -  Emily Mure                3:54

4.  "Hang On For The Ride" Aaron Nathans & Michael G. Ronstadt 3:59

5.  “Drink At Four” - Barry Oreck    5:40

6.  “When Love Goes Right” - Susan Cattaneo 4:23

7.  “My Name Is Sam” - Berkley Hart 5:05

8.  “Carry” - Jesse Terry featuring Kim Richey  3:41

9.  "Brooklyn Bridge" - Steve Blane 3:16

10. "Could’ve Been Us" - Jordi Baizan 4:16

11. "Bob’s Boots" - Terry Radigan    4:19

12. "Coney Island" - Safe As Houses 3:08 

13. "Brooklyn’s Tear" - Richard Boulger 5:36

14.  "I Like You A Latte" - Nicole Z      3:28

15.  "Find Your Tribe" - Big Little Lions  3:46

16.  "Captain’s Church" - Good Night Blue Moon 4:04

17.  "Rabbit In The Road" - Rachel Kilgour 3:43

18.  "Neon & Velour" - Tragedy Ann          3:30

19.  "One by One" — Miss Lauren Pratt    4:19

20.  "Singin’ My Heart Out" — Louise Mosrie  2:53

21.  "Goodness That Could Be" - Blackwater Trio 3:55 

22.  "Evaporating Life" - Annie Sumi         3:21

23.  "Man On The Moon" - Benjamin Dakota Rogers  4:03

24.  "Ordinary Day" - Peter Mayer           4:12

25.  "I Ought To Know" - The Malvinas   3:54

26.  "RPM" (Revolution) IlYAIMY             4:03

27.  "Murder City" - Abigail Lapell            2:30

28.  "Temporary Tattoo" - Jonathan Byrd 2:44

29.  "Babies" - Brad Yoder  3:08

30.  "Someone Who Can Stand You" - John Forster  3:30

31.  "The Color Of Roses" - Beth Nielsen Chapman  4:50

32.  "The Other Shore" - Kenny White       3:36

33.  "Sum Of All Things" - Genevieve        4:01

34.  "Threnody" - Safe As Houses             3:12

*35.  "The Root" - Greg Klyma                   3:37

36.  "Fellas, Get Out The Way" - Scott Cook 3:31

37.  "Speaking Out" - Kathleen Healy       2:58

*38.  "Hard To Hear The Angels Sing" - Jeff Daniels & The Ben Daniels Band                                                           3:53

39.  "Fields Of America" - Rupert Wates    2:45

40.  "The President Sang Amazing Grace" - Zoe Mulford 3:20

*41.  "Amazing Grace" - Barack Obama     1:05

42.  "Battle Hymn Of The Army Of Lovers" - Crys Matthews 3:23

43. "Hope Lingers On" - Low Lily                 2:08

New Album Is In The Works!

Our 2nd full length recording begins production June 24rd at Ampersand Studios in Bridgewater, NJ, with the brilliant musical production work of Bob Harris. The album will feature 6 new original songs along with a few special covers of longtime favorites. Featuring Jesse Miller, Adam Armstrong and Rima Fand along with other special guests the album is due for release in September. Stay tuned.