Saturday, August 10, 2013

Pairing Live Music with Outdoor Dining

Lynne Rossetto Kasper, host of The Splendid Table, (See once had a guest on to discuss the question of best practices for pairing music and dining.  He suggested these excellent points:

  1. Start out with upbeat familiar tunes that swing and say "This is going to be fun!"
  2. Move to instrumental music and soft sounds that blend with the setting, lighting and the outdoors. 
  3. Send them home with romantic R & B tunes that have them hugging goodbyes, dancing out the front door, and feeling the love and intimacy, e.g., Sam Cooke's "You Send Me"

In our shows on restaurant patios we like to follow a similar plan and mix it up by performing upbeat songs such as Van Morrisson’s swinging Moon Dance, then weave in softer instrumental finger style acoustic guitar so people can talk with each other at their tables and end strong with lots of positive and dance-able love songs. You can see our set list at:

One restaurant had an ongoing poll on it's website. The question they asked:  "What music do you want to hear next time you visit our restaurant?"  The responses were:

Classic Rock - 53%
Top 40 - 17%
Blues - 15%
Hip Hop - 12%
Holiday Tunes - 3%

I always keep this in mind and we play a lot of cover tunes and light acoustic rock that appeals to the age group in the audience.

Hope to see you soon at one of our shows!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Celebrating with the Karenni

Dear friends, family, leaders, students and fans,

I enjoyed playing guitar of mass last Sunday at St. Bernard's Catholic Church in St. Paul, see:, where I met many members of their wonderful and growing Karenni community. To learn more about the people from Burma, see

Our next live acoustic music event is Lakes Tavern and Grill in Woodbury MN on Thursday, July 25th from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm on the patio. For more info, go to: and

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Road trip to perform again at Paradise Landing

Yesterday Tim Sunde and I hit the road to Balsam Lake, joined by John Hiiva, to play on the patio at Paradise Landing for the 4th consecutive season. The gift of playing music with good friends fills my heart and is very satisfying.  I really appreciate the time we have together.  

Tim and I have been performing live music together since about 1994.  He plays a mean 7 string bass guitar.  I brought my Breedlove cut away 6 string acoustic guitar. John adds great percussion, drums and cajon. I've always wanted to have a great percussionist with us. 

I love the music we play.  Our fans give me a lot of motivation and encouragement to continue.  I plan to do just that for a long time!