Road Trip!

Left Foot Charley logo  I’m really excited to be performing in northern Michigan wine country during the weekend of June 14-15. Great things are happening with food, wine AND music in the Grand Traverse-Leelanau region, and it’s always a special treat to return and plug into the scene again.

On Friday, the 14th, I’ll be playing at Left Foot Charley Winery (on the patio, weather permitting), from 6-8:30 PM. I’ve been a big fan of LFC since before the doors of the winery/tasting room were even opened, so this will be great fun. Owner/winemaker Bryan Ulbrich has threatened to pull out his mandolin and bass and join me, so who knows what kind of musical mischief we might throw down?! Fabulous Michigan wine and cider and homegrown Michigan music make a great pairing.

Bluebird logoOn Saturday, the 15th, I’ll be playing at The Bluebird Restaurant & Tavern in Leland (on the patio, weather permitting), from 9 PM until midnight or later. The Bluebird has been owned and operated by the Telgard family since 1927, and Skip Telgard and I became friends through virtual wine-related correspondences more than 10 years ago, going back to the early days of my Gang of Pour adventures. Great food, great wine and beer and a beautiful location make The Bluebird a very special destination spot in northern Michigan, and I’m really looking forward to playing and singing there!

Finally, while considering my trip up north, I asked my buddy Charlie Walmsley if I could pay him a visit on Thursday, the 13th, in order to break up the drive, and he had a better idea, saying, “Why don’t you open for my new folk-rock band, Crazy Chester, that night. We’re playing at Rubbles Bar, in Mt. Pleasant.” Brilliant idea, Charlie!!!

Crazy Chester Crazy Chester is made up of veteran area musicians Jim Gilmore (acoustic guitar), Tom T. Ball (acoustic bass), Charlie (keyboards) and Rob Clendening (drums), and they’ve joined forces to perform classic folk-rock covers from Neil Young, Bob Dylan, The Band, CSN, James Taylor, Jackson Browne and more. As Charlie describes it, “This new group is not a dance band, it’s more of a listen and feel good band.” I go way back with these four fine musicians, and I used to play Rubbles regularly back in the late ‘70s, when it was called Tom’s Foolery, so this will be great fun. The show runs from 7-10 PM. I’ll play the first set, and Crazy Chester will follow with two sets. A $5 cover charge will help defray the cost of strings, harmonicas, drum sticks and gasoline, among other things. I’m hoping to see lots of my mid-Michigan friends!

That’s all for now; more later!


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"In the best traditions of folk music, George’s songs evoke personal experiences and historical events, and George certainly has had some experiences, let me tell you. But the experiences of which he sings so truthfully here, while almost mundane when taken literally, are made to seem so much more meaningful, so much more heartfelt in his hands and within his voice. These arrangements are as near to the folk tradition as one could hope, are exactly all that’s necessary for each song, and when accompaniment and backing vocals are used, they feature David Mosher on several traditional instruments, as well as Bill Arnold on dobro, providing simple support to George’s already ample foundations." —Michael O'Brien, Open Mike


And George Heritier from Oak Park shared his clever songwriting, cool and entertaining lyrics and hot guitar/harmonica riffs. He got the best round of applause for the whole festival! I am a huge fan of acoustic blues and folk music and George is one of the best I have heard. I would make it a point to go see him ANY time he plays, it will be well worth the effort! —John P. Bayerl, PhD - SeMi