This year I had the honor of being in a masterclass with the great Darrell Scott. If you don't know him, I recommend starting with You'll Never Leave Harlan Alive -- but really, you can't go wrong with any of his music! It's hard to put what I learned from him into words, but one big thing is that every song is different. There are no rules to follow. You approach each song and ask it what it needs to become most truly itself.
Another lesson from Song School that really stuck with me comes from songwriter Ellis Delaney. She encouraged us to approach performance not as "look at me and how great I am," but as making an offering. As a performer, it can sometimes be really tempting to focus on the people who aren't receiving what I'm offering -- the ones on their phones, waiting to hear the person playing after me. But if I give my attention to the people who are listening, everything changes. I become much less focused on myself and asking "what do these people think of me?" I can connect with the people who are ready to receive what I have to share, and it's a much deeper experience for all of us.
I tried to do that here, when I got a chance to perform my new song "Alone" on stage at Song School:
Speaking of sharing, I'm excited to announce my first performance in awhile -- a birthday show!
Eli's Birthday Livestream Concert
With Special Guests!
Saturday, October 2nd
6:30 pm pacific / 9:30 pm eastern
Live here on my website
Also, save the date for this upcoming in person show in the Bay Area with powerful songwriter Briget Boyle (pandemic permitting, of course).
Sunday, January 16th
The Monkey House
1638 University Ave, Berkeley, CA
with Briget Boyle
Matinee Show! Doors 4 pm, Show 4:30 pm
$10 - $20 Sliding Scale (Cash only at the door)
All Ages, Wheelchair Accessible, BYOB
Reserve a seat
Proof of vaccination and mask required to attend