We would have such a very good time – Such a fine time; such a happy time…

November 3, 2009

It’s official:

I have played only 3 solo shows in the second half of this year.

For me, that is UNHEARD of.  My schedule hasn’t been this sparse since…  half a decade ago?  No… probably longer.  I mean, even back at the top of 2007 when I was near death and hospitalized twice, I had a more densely booked performance schedule in a shorter span of time.

This is VERY different for me.

So what’s going on?

I’ve been saying for a long while now that I’m going to play where people want to listen to me.  Pretty simple philosophy. :)

So I let it be known months ago that I was booking house concerts to support the release of *Clang & Chime*…    and I got six emails from interested parties.  Before long, I had five all-but-booked.

Two got cold feet along the way, but three confirmed, and I just got back from performing at the last of those three about a week ago.

It worked out that they were spaced out about a month apart from each other; I did one in Central New York at the end of August while I was in the area finishing the album mix at The Belfry.  The second worked out at the end of September in Castle Rock, Colorado, and the third one was here in Nevada… though at the opposite end of the state, down in Las Vegas.  With all the behind-the-scenes action that went into getting *Clang & Chime* ready for release, I wasn’t too upset about the sparse schedule…  and it worked out that I released the album on the internet as soon as I returned from Vegas.

To help get rid of the mystery surrounding house concerts, I’m doing a little round-up of my (great) experiences here…  enjoy!


I won’t mention any more specific info about this location, as the hosts had asked that this be a private show.  In fact, I never even listed this on my calendar for that reason.  House concerts can be an awesome way to meet other folks in your area who like the same music… there’s a definite bond that forms between people who share an interest in independent music, and it makes for great community…   but comfort in one’s own home supersedes all else, and if the hosts want it to be “friends only”, it absolutely remains so.  :)

The couple that hosted this show have been hardcore Horanimals for years… I think they first saw me perform a college show back in 2002.  Now they’re out in the real world, married, and recently moved into their own place…  and what better way to enjoy one’s new house than by hosting one’s very first house concert?

It was a win-win…  the hosts got to share something with their friends that they’d only been able to describe in words for a long time, and I got to reach out to a whole new group of people.  The hosts also got to hear a bunch of the new record before it was even sent off to the mastering lab! :D

Overheard from wife-host to husband-host:   “We should do this all the time.”


Denver HC 1

(taken from the nosebleed seats... look how far away I am! )

This was a different animal.  Charlene and Greg Johnson have been hosting house concerts for years now… they even have a name for their series (“Music on the Mesa”), and they get listed in local papers.  They take it very seriously, and being an ace musical duo themselves, they know how to pull off every aspect of the evening. From seating to sound to invitations to food & drinks to sectioning off a somewhat distant “KIDS ROOM”, there was nothing they hadn’t thought of.  It was brilliant.  They really transform their home into a venue for a night.

Having a track record like that isn’t just good for the performer; it’s great for the audience.  Many of the regular attendees at Mesa concerts are friends of the Johnsons… but they became friends because they showed up to so many house concerts on account of the consistently great shows.  The night I performed they had a packed house….  FIFTY people.

I met so many great people here, to say nothing of the Johnsons themselves, who are an amazing family.  They went far and above the call of duty with their hospitality.  One example out of a hundred: they heard what a coffee-snob I am, and so they went and got a coffee maker and a pound of gourmet beans…  just to make me comfortable.  That’s just the tip of the iceberg; I could go on all day, and I’m still trying hard to think of what I did to rack up enough karma points to receive this experience and these people in my life.  It was just awesome. :)


Vegas HC 4

(You can't see the people hiding beind the plants... :)

This show was put on by another couple trying it for the first time, but their instincts proved to be right on-the-mark.  Marla and Andy made sure everything went off without a hitch, and if I hadn’t known that it was their first time trying to host, I’d think they did this all the time.

The atmosphere was fantastic, and packed, again.   Let me clarify about what it means to be “packed”…   in a club that holds hundreds of people, twenty-five attendees won’t feel like a lot… to the performer, or to those people themselves.  The seating can be spread out into “pockets” around the room, and the energy dissipates before it can ever really build up.

 But in your LIVING ROOM, twenty-five people (clarification: twenty-five MATURE people) all giving their attention to the same thing can be positively electric.  The space gets FULL, of both people and energy, and it just creates an amazing environment for music.  Marla and Andy’s living room was packed with that many people, and we just kept passing energy back and forth to each other for a couple hours.  It was a great time.

I was beyond flattered when I saw the feedback Marla collected from her guests after the show…  I was, actually, honored:


* I have to admit having never been to a house concert and not really knowing what I was in for I was under the impression we were on our way to see “Yawnie” and instead I got to see one of the most ELECTRIC performers I have gotten to see play live since I saw the very first U2 concert in Los Angeles =)

* I admit whole heartedly that I was mesmerized by the entire performance … intelligent lyrics and rock your socks off music!

* We go to community concerts and shows all the time and have never seen anything as good as this!

* You talked him up pretty good so I was a bit skeptical. Turns out I was right and you were wrong. He was better than you said he was. Great show!

* I had a really rough week and this concert was the perfect thing to make it all go away. Seth was amazing!

* I had no idea what to expect. This exceeded everything I thought it might be like. Good stuff!

* What an absolute rockin out concert and Seth Horan was funky too!

* Great concert! We had a great time!

* We had a great time. And drove home listening to Seth’s new CD that we bought after the concert and continued the groove all the way home. Thanks!

* I had never heard of Seth before. But I’m sure glad I know who he is now. He was GREAT! Thanks for the invite!!!

* It was an absolutely wonderful evening … we talked about politics, we talked about community service, we talked about upcoming events and then the music started and all we could talk about was Seth Horan.


Sin City, you humble me.  :)

Anyway, like I was saying: even though it may seem like I’m “not doing anything” right now, I assure you…  this is the first spare moment I’ve had to take notice!

So, the album is finally out, and I’m not out doing a fall tour…  what AM I doing now?

Why, I’m booking the SPRING tour.

At this point, I’ll nip-in-the-bud the next question that always seems to arise when I make a statement like that.

Invariably, someone always asks:  “When are you going to play in MY town?”

If that question is forming in your mind, I can answer it with another question:

When am I playing at your place? ;)

Let me know.  Thanks for reading.

Be well,




  1. “Yawnie” is genius! (just saying.)

  2. I will send you an email to your email address above, from the address I now use on ReverbNations, re: playing a house concert at Chez Syd.

    And indeed, Mystery Commenter Quoted in the Blog, “Yawnie” is awesome!

  3. Please make sure to leave room for a Vegas encore!

  4. When is the blog entry/review of your now legendary performance at the Philadelphia Flag Day Throwdown of 2003 going to be posted? Now THAT crew was “Ready For The Riot”… ;-)

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