Friday November 10, 2023
It’s Friday morning on the Gulf Coast. 76 will be the high here today.
It was a postcard day down here yesterday as you can see below. The Frank Brown Songwriters Festival with over 200 writers is up and running up and down the coast here from Gulf Shores to Pensacola.
I had lunch at the Flora-Bama yesterday around noon and got my name badge and officially registered. It was great chatting with Billy Yates and Wood Newton and others over a bowl of Chili and catching up. Billy wrote a couple of big ole George Jones smashes including “Rocking Chair” and Wood of course wrote songs like “Bobby Sue” for the Oak Ridge Boys.
Then my “Hits & Grins” partner Victoria Venier rolled in from Nashville without Steve Dean who’s got something going on in Nashville this morning that’s prevented him from joining us.
I grabbed a little dinner at one of my favorite places down here…the Shrimp Basket and got the white fish basket that my brother Gary discovered and recommended once. I give it 10 thumbs up as well. I used to always order the shrimp (Hello….SHRIMP Basket) But now the whitefish is my “go to” when I’m down here. Add a little side of red beans and rice? So good.
Then it was two shows last night, the first with Brent Burns at Tacky Jacks in Gulf Shores. And I’m grateful that the festival added Brent to the schedule at the last second he in filling in with our trio a couple of times as well. It was just the two of us for an hour laughing and sharing songs with a great crowd at Tacky Jacks.
Then the two of us drove down to the Flora-Bama for a 9:20 pm show where we joined Victoria Venier on stage for another hour set. This is truly one of the GREAT rooms to play in for songwriters.
Huge crowd…LOUD crowd…laugh out loud crowd. The response at times was just so great. And for me it was fun watching the reaction when Brent sang some of our songs like “Exercise Makes Me Look Good Naked…But So Does Beer”. They were singing along.
And I had a chance to sing “Let Me Shake Your Hand” that I wrote about Brent’s service in Viet Nam where he was wounded twice. It was a nice moment…especially with it being Veteran’s Day weekend. And it gave me a chance to promote our Freedom Sings USA show this evening. More on that later.
Victoria just rocked the place as well…and “In Memphis” the song we wrote with Steve Dean (who couldn’t be here) tore them up as well. And we are certainly thinking about Steve back home in Nashville this morning.
Truly an amazing night that we didn’t want to end.
My friend Wood Newton who’s written some huge hits followed our show with some other writers and I stayed to watch him play one of our songs as he tipped me off that he was going to try it out. The title is “She Got A D U I- V O R C E.” Makes a songwriter feel really good to sit in the back and watch the crowd laugh and respond like they did. I have a feeling this will be a song Wood sings out a lot from now on. Thank you Wood.
After my show my buddy Scott Southworth came up and gave me a copy of his brand new CD which has two songs on it that we co-wrote including one that was a single release for him “Country No Matter What Country”. I’ll be wearing that out as I drive up and down the beach road here for the rest of the festival. Thank you Scott! Scott is just back from doing some shows in Germany so it was good to see him as well and catch up.
BUY A GUITAR
Okay…pretty sure this would make anyone who loves guitars…laugh.
Connecticut is the first to report flu and RSV deaths and they are encouraging residents to get vaccinated.
Meanwhile Puerto Rico is having a flu epidemic with 42 deaths reported and over 25,000 cases.
The age bracket of 35-44 has the highest spike in chronic health conditions since the pandemic. It was at 43% in 2019 and is now at 58%.
Some McDonald locations are now racking Krispy Kreme donuts. So when I order a sausage, egg, and cheese McMuffin and add a side of Krispy Kreme’s? I’m not going to look at the calorie content on the board. Nope.
CMA FOLLOW UP
Anyone watching the CMA Awards Show this year had to wonder what the heck was going on with Wynonna who came out and sang with Jelly Roll. Some worried she had vertigo and was going to fall after gripping his arm tightly and not letting go while she was singing.
This morning she said there was nothing to worry about and that she was just REALLY nervous because she was such a fan of Jelly Roll. I’m thinking if I’m as great as Wy is…I wouldn’t be nervous singing with anyone. But as huge a star as Jelly Roll is now I’m thinking about changing my stage name to “Billy Roll”…or maybe “Belly Roll”. Maybe I can get Wynonna to sing with me sometime.
An Australian farmer wades out into some water and a crocodile sinks his teeth into the farmer. So what’s a farmer to do? He bites back. In a sensitive area. And the Croc let go. Cool. But I’m wondering how does one know where the sensitive area on a danged crocodile is? Anybody?
HEADLINE OF THE DAY
Target Goes To Great Lengths To Prevent Underwear From Being Stolen. Wonder if they’re stealing more boxers or briefs?
It’s all about our veterans tonight as I play once again at the Flora-Bama for Freedom Sings USA. Myself and four other songwriters will be singing songs we’ve written with our veterans through the years. And with it being Veteran’s Day tomorrow this should be memorable tonight.
Then tomorrow evening I have one more show here at the festival with Victoria Venier and Brent Burns at 7 pm at Lulus and then it’s back to Nashville come Sunday morning.
My thanks to all the hard working folks who make this songwriters so special year after year.
Have a great weekend!