Friday, June 10, 2022

The Pearl Within My Heart

My eighth graders are currently reading The Pearl by John Steinbeck. It's a fable about injustice which unfortunately doesn't turn out well in the end. Fortunately, life doesn't always imitate art. Here's my own pearl story, from my 1995 album I Own This Town, with a happier ending (so far so good!).

 

The Pearl Within My Heart

Have you ever wondered how a pearl begins?
An oyster cracks its shell, a grain of sand slips in
That grain of sand gets lodged against the oyster's tender flesh
And it feels a pain with every movement, every breath

The oyster cannot rub that grain of sand away
So it cries itself to sleep, dreaming shades of gray
But morning brings a miracle, a shining silver coat
That wraps around the sand and smooths away the hurt

And you are the pearl within my heart
You are the pearl within my heart
The moment I first saw your face I felt my healing start
You are the pearl within my heart

Most folks give a diamond at a time like this
When they make a lover's promise and seal it with a kiss
But diamonds aren't forever and they cut so very deep
So I'm offering this pearl I'm praying that you'll keep

For you are the pearl within my heart
You are the pearl within my heart
The moment I first saw your face I felt my healing start
You are the pearl within my heart
You are the pearl within my heart

(c) 1995 Terry Kitchen/urban campfire music, BMI


Saturday, November 13, 2021

New "Do You Hear What I Hear" video (and radio CD) for the holidays!


 

I'm excited to say that my acoustic arrangement of the Christmas song "Do You Hear What I Hear" is included on the new Hudson Harding Music Folk Radio Singles compilation. It was one of my sister Amy's favorite carols, so I always think of her when I sing it. Hope you enjoy it, and that it brings back some happy memories of your own childhoods. Happy holidays!

Sunday, August 1, 2021

It was thirty years ago today...


 So it was 1990 or so, and I was at a party at my friend Lea's house. My band Loose Ties had broken up, and I was describing my plan to move back to Los Angeles (where I'd gone to college before moving to Boston) to be a behind-the-scenes songwriter. Somebody asked why I needed a band, or stars to sing my songs - why couldn't I just sing them myself? I thought about it, and started playing places like the Nameless Coffeehouse in Harvard Square, and kinda liked the extra attention people gave the songs. I started recording at Steve Friedman's Melville Park Studio with a bunch of new friends and old bandmates, and on August 1, 1991, I released my very first album. Thirty years on it still sounds pretty good. It's now been remastered for digital release (and repackaged with my 1993 album Blues and Grace) for a nice overview of my early solo career. Thanks to all the talented musicians who took part - Geoff Bartley, Barbara Kessler, Annie Raines, Leslie Sterling, Laura Wood, Laurie Goldsmith, Steve Hurl, Mckinley Black, and my mates from Loose Ties - Brice Buchanan, Barry Singer, Bill Kuhlman and Chris Peeler. You can find it on iTunes/Apple Music , Amazon Music and Spotify and lots of other outlets. It didn't quite make me a star, but it was lots of fun to make, and even more fun after all these years to hear "Property," "Fall Like a Rock," "Stonecutter," "Vodka for Crying (Wine to Make Love)" and even a spontaneous cover of Al Kooper's "This Diamond Ring" one more time. Hope you enjoy it as well.  

  

Friday, June 25, 2021

Lost Songs feature track: "Brand New Laces (Same Old Shoes)"

 


I'm excited to have Rebecca Lynch and Barry Singer as guests on my latest CD Lost Songs. Here's Becky singing (and Barry playing) "Brand New Laces (Same Old Shoes)," a song I wrote when Becky and I were college students together at Occidental and performed as the acoustic duo Tres Bien. Barry and I played together in the '80s band Loose Ties, so it's fun to reunite and rediscover some Lost Songs!


Friday, April 30, 2021

Meet Podokey, the new Massachusetts State Dinosaur!

 




Massachusetts has a new state dinosaur! Discovered in 1910 in Holyoke by Mignon Talbot, Podokesaurus was the first dino species discovered and named by a woman. I thought it needed a theme song, so here you go - a video 200 million years in the making!

Thanks to the dino crew - filmers Chris Legare, Wayne Martin, and William Smith, editor Chris Constantine, and all the participating junior dinos.

More on the real Podokesaurus at https://statedino.org/


Wednesday, March 10, 2021

'Lost Songs' Debuts at #13 on National Folk-DJ Airplay Chart!




Thanks to all the DJs who are playing my new CD Lost Songs, which is at lucky #13 on the current (February) Folk-DJ airplay chart. I'm especially proud that 15 of the album's 16 tracks have been aired. I am also #14 'Most Played Artist', tied with, um, Bob Dylan, Susan Werner and Canadian artist Maria Dunn. There's lots of great, relevant music on the chart so it's an honor to be included. Thanks for listening and please support on-air folk music! More on the CD at terrykitchen.com

Saturday, January 2, 2021

NEW TERRY KITCHEN CD 'LOST SONGS'!

 


2020 was a tough year for all of us. While I was trapped at home, I rediscovered a number of songs I'd written along the way that hadn't fit onto whatever album I was working on at the time. Some were silly, some were serious, but they seemed to fit the absurd lockdown moment we were collectively sharing. So I recorded them, along with some brand new songs, and the result is Lost Songs, a collection of 16 songs spanning years, moods and genres but that somehow all celebrate surviving 2020.

Despite covid limitations, the album features some great guest musicians, many recorded on my backyard patio. Players include Jackie Damsky (violin), Norman Zocher (pedal steel), and, from my '80s band Loose Ties, Barry Singer on piano and saxophone. Singers include Sarah Telford, Deede Bergeron, Brian Middleton and, notably, Rebecca Lynch, my singing partner from my Occidental College years, who takes the lead on "Brand New Laces (Same Old Shoes." The songs range from bluegrass to '60s folk-rock to acoustic swing, and there's even a polka. There's some social commentary ("Nickel Bag," about white privilege), some love songs ("Here's to Us") and almost-love songs ("She Never Looks Out the Window"), nostalgia ("Thirty-One Flavors") and anti-nostalgia ("Ex-Girlfriend Weekend." I had a blast recording it, and hope you enjoy it as well.

The physical CD is available at my website, and it's available to download/stream at iTunes, Amazon and Spotify. There's also a video of the opening track "Opposite Day" up on youtube. Thanks for listening and I hope it helps get you through 2021!




Friday, May 8, 2020

New Terry Kitchen Short Story Collection - Coping Mechanisms !

     Every once and a while, I hear a voice that doesn't really fit into the verses and chorus of a song, but I listen anyway and jot down what I hear. Here are ten stories, each about a character trying to navigate life's curves and pitfalls as best they can (as are we all). The stories are all relatively short, more snapshots than fully developed three-act movies, so I've collected them into an ebook, Coping Mechanisms, that's available (cheap!) from Amazon. Hope you enjoy them, and if so, bonus points if you get to post a short review. Stay safe and happy reading!
https://www.amazon.com/Coping-Mechanisms-Stories-Terry-Kitchen-ebook/dp/B087QVFP6T/ref=sr_1_1?crid=38FC6NKGODFKH&dchild=1&keywords=terry+kitchen+coping+mechanisms&qid=1588961399&sprefix=terry+kitchen+coping%2Caps%2C247&sr=8-1

Monday, March 16, 2020

Next Time We Meet debuts at #5 on national Folk-DJ chart!


     I hope that you and yours are safe and healthy in this complex time. On the good news front, I'm happy to say that my new CD Next Time We Meet is #5 on the new Folk-DJ chart, which tracks airplay on folk stations across the US, Canada, and beyond. "Party on the Roof" from the CD is tied for #4 on the song chart, and my take on the Beatles' "Norwegian Wood" is #11. I'm also tied at #5 on the artist chart with the late great songwriter David Olney, which is an honor in itself. Thanks to all the great singers and musicians who contributed to the CD, and to all the DJs and programmers who are playing it. You can find out more about the album at terrykitchen.com. Stay safe and happy listening! 

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Next Time We Meet - new CD!


Back when I was in 10th grade in Findlay, Ohio, I met an aspiring singer named Bill Kuhlman (in blue above). I was an aspiring guitarist so we decided to form a band. We ended up moving to Boston together in a van full of dreams and guitars. We had a lot of fun but never quite made it big, and stayed friends (in some ways better friends) long after the band broke up. A few years ago Bill found out he had cancer and decided to make the most of his time here, however long it might be. He spent time with friends and family, got to see his daughter start college, and we even fit in one more Loose Ties show, at a Findlay High School reunion. Bill spent his last few weeks in hospice care, with a parade of loved ones around him sharing stories - we actually got told, repeatedly, to keep it down since we were laughing so much.

I've spent the year since his passing thinking about Bill, and people he affected, and the world in general, and the result is my new album Next Time We Meet. I had some talented people help me - vocalists Mara Levine, Amy Malkoff, Deede Bergeron and Rebecca Lynch; instrumentalists Bob Harris (mandolin), Jackie Damsky (violin), Roger Williams (Dobro) and my Loose Ties bandmates Brice Buchanan and Chris Peeler. (I even play Bill's bass guitar  on the title track.) In addition to my own songs, there's a cover of "Norwegian Wood" since we spent many happy hours in Bill's basement listening to the Fab 4 and trying to figure out what made them so good.

If there's a lesson in all this, in the album and the experiences that made it, it would be "no regrets" - that we never know what's coming, so we better live, and love, each day as it's here.

Next time we meet...

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

New Terry Kitchen Album Rubies in the Dust Now Online!


I'm celebrating 2019 with Rubies in the Dust, a new collection of fun covers, live tracks, hard-to-find tracks, and collaborations with some of my favorite singers and musicians. Guests include Barbara Kessler, Rebecca Lynch, Annie Raines, Jackie Damsky, Amy Malkoff, Lucy Martinez, Sarah Telford, and Brice Buchanan and Barry Singer from my '80s band Loose Ties. It's available as a download or stream from iTunes, Spotify, Amazon and CDBaby. There's a cappella Beach Boys, acoustic Rolling Stones, solo takes of "Life Is Hard Enough" and "Heaven Here on Earth," and a few tracks nobody's heard other than my cat... Hope you enjoy it, and have a great 2019!

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

RIP Bill "Fabulous" Kuhlman




My friends and I have been pretty lucky over the years, with the passage of time and all the changes it can bring. We've said goodbye to parents, and favorite pets, but never one of our own. That changed earlier this month, when we lost our friend Bill Kuhlman to cancer. My best friend from high school, we founded Loose Ties together with drummer Chris Peeler, and moved to Boston en masse from Ohio in the early '80s to make it big (still waiting...). We broke up as a band in the late '80s, but stayed friends and saw each other for Red Sox games, Easter Egg hunts, and the occasional reunion show, most recently at our 2016 Findlay High School reunion when Bill was already diagnosed. Here's a clip of Bill singing his signature version of "Heard It Through the Grapevine" with Loose Ties circa 1987 set to some favorite pix. Hope you enjoy it - we certainly had fun playing it, and all the other tunes, but mostly we had fun just hanging out, bouncing Monty Python quotes off each other, and watching, and participating in, the parade that is life. Too soon gone, Bill Fabulous. Til we meet again.



Sunday, February 18, 2018

The Quiet Places CD Release Concert Saturday March 10 in Framingham


On Saturday evening March 10 I'll be celebrating the release of my new CD The Quiet Places with a concert at Amazing Things Arts Center, 160 Hollis St., Framingham. I'll have a full band of guests from the CD including Rebecca Lynch, Deede Bergeron, Bob Vivona, John Coffey, and Brice Buchanan and Barry Singer from my '80s band Loose Ties. Also performing will be Mark Stepakoff, who has a new CD as well. The concert starts at 8 PM, and you can get tix here. The CD's already been played across the US and Canada, with the lead track "Enjoy It While It Lasts" reaching #8 on the national Folk-DJ airplay chart. The Quiet Places is available at www.terrykitchen.com, iTunes and Spotify and copies will be available at the show. Amazing Things is a great listening room, with free parking, a great sound system, snacks, and even an art gallery. It should be a great, one-of-a-kind evening so I hope you can make it!

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Terry's "Over the Christmas Moon" on new Holiday Compilation CD!


I'm happy to say my song "Over the Christmas Moon" is included on the new Hudson Harding Happy Holidays! CD, alongside Noel Paul Stookey (of Peter, Paul & Mary), Tom Paxton, Mark Stepakoff, Phil Henry, Chris LaVancher and other talented artists. My song features Jackie Damsky on violin and closes the album. It's a promotional CD not officially for sale, BUT anyone who orders my new CD The Quiet Places or any of my other CDs (or my novel Next Big Thing) from my website between now and New Year's will get a free copy of the holiday CD!  Here's a preview of "Over the Christmas Moon." Happy holidays! (I should warn you that it's not exactly "Jingle Bells" - I'm always sensitive to the holidays being a hard time for people who don't fit in for one reason or another - which I bet is most of us...)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UsA2Q0TVJ0

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Nature's Way - the movie

My friend Karen Sauer did this very moving video for "Nature's Way" from my new CD The Quiet Places, hope it inspires you to do something nice for the planet. Thanks to Tim Casey for shooting the performance footage, and to Billy Carl Mancini for the claves!