My friend Jack Murray puts together a great band to present the tunes of Hank Williams on the anniversary of his death 62 years ago. Jack graciously lets me open the evening with a solo set. I appreciate the opportunity to do my ‘country heart’ songs for a change.

I led off with Blue Mule, a Peter Rowan bluegrass tune with a great story line and followed with These Days, the first time I’ve done it in years – a Jackson Browne song I picked up from Tom Rush in my college years. It sounded great – my voice is getting really good and its nice to feel my oats with another musical tool. It’ll Be Me followed, a bluesy departure and followed that with Rodeo Rider for a second night in a row. Folks were really listening.

I served up Edge of Night, the tune I’ve been working hard on, and it paid off tonight. It’s my Kim song, and it’s filled with some dark images and pain, but pretty much lays it out there emotionally as much as any song I sing. Seeing how I still awake from dreams of her, the imagery remains as fresh as three years ago when I found the song from Mike Henderson and the Bluebloods. I can call up the emotion to help me sing the song and I thought I nailed it tonight.

I finished with Santa Assassin. It was fun but the electricity wasn’t there like it has been recently. Perhaps a country crowd isn’t quite sure of where I’m coming from.

I’m feeling stronger with my playing and vocals that I have in a long time, and I guess it’s a function of a new hip and better attitude of where I am in life. It’s been a rough four or five years. Happy New Year.