"His music recalls the intimate, working-class aesthetic of the folk artists of the ’50s and ’60s. His intricate, finger-picked melodies and chord progressions echo the emotional folk and outlaw country of idols Hank Williams Sr. and Johnny Cash." - Austin Sorette, The Sound 4.13.16
the next four gigs...
Friday, October 21, 2016
Mad River Coffee Roasters
Saturday, October 22, 2016
Union Coffee Co.
w/ Charlie Chronopolous
Friday, October 28, 2016
Six Strings, Three Chords
New England College Concord
with guest: Paul Hubert
Friday, November 4, 2016
The Common Cafe & Tavern
Wednesday, November 16, 2016
Also Playing: Pat Yeomans, Tough Old Bird
t.o. related interviews, articles and other stuff
news - october 5, 2016
My anticipation of the evening of September 24th 2016 was building like a tiny fire in the pit of my stomach as I found myself pacing around the yard of the North Buick Lounge, listening to the party sounds inside the barn, and looking up at a star-filled sky, trying to get my head straight and visualize putting on a good show. Man, this stuff isn't easy. Most of life is a blur, right up until that moment when I am on stage behind a microphone, with my guitar, playing my songs. Is that weakness, or am I just limiting myself? I'm happy doing other things too, but man, waiting in line at the bank...I'm awkward as hell. I can't sort out my insurance to save my life, but give me a guitar, and maybe a stage to play it on, and I'm in my own little world where I make all the rules and everything makes sense.
Finally, it was about fifteen minutes until I was to start my set, up there in North Berwick Maine. The energy in the barn that evening was strong, and the two opening acts were killer. Ten minutes in, and my heartbeat is approaching hummingbird territory, and I find myself stretching out here and there as if I'm some kind of athlete. A few knuckle cracks, leg stretches, and a "You can fuckin' do this, you've done it hundreds of times!" Five minutes until gig time, and I am on stage getting my equipment straight and the guitar in tune, going over a skeletal set list in my mind. I knew the first tune I would do, "Somewhere Between India & Idaho" and had a rough idea of a few others I wanted to play, but other than that it was a shoot-from-the-hip and read-the-audience kind of night.
A sweet introduction from Marty, and the set begins. I start riffing and trying to get into the music and make it the only thing that matters. "Don't look around the room," I think to myself. "You might see something or someone, and it will make your mind skip and take total control away from the music. Oh man, the monitors are just right, and my amp that I brought is just kickin' and perfect and clean." The crowd was electric, and I felt like some sort of classic stage performer. Like I was carrying some sort of torch. A lot of times I discredit myself, and I gotta work on the self-esteem thing like anyone else, but in that moment I felt pretty damn good.
Songs just come out of me, one after another, and I keep my eyes closed, almost imagining that I am hovering above myself, listening in awe at how I was singing. It was coming from somewhere deep, where thinking has no place, and subconscious takes over...That had never happened before. Maybe a Zen master would classify that experience as something or other, but I gotta tell you, it felt magical. I had gotten right to the bone of it. All the gigs, the chords, riffs, cables, lyrics, records, EVERYTHING. I got right back to the beginning, and to what truly matters: being inspired by the music. Thank you to Martin England and Jen England, Continuum Arts Collective, North Buick Lounge, and all the kind people who attended the gig. It was one for the record books, and in my top-five for sure.
news - august 8, 2016
As I write this update, I am stricken with the realization that I have slacked in my webmaster duties, and for that I apologize. But people, please understand; I have been doing that weird task called living as of late. And most often, even though I know I must do something (update the website), I occupy myself with writing or playing guitar, which feeds and nurtures one part of my mind, but sets off alarms in some other far-out locale in the dingy quarters of this brain of mine, and those alarms tell me of the logical things I should do...such as: book tour dates, update website, update log book. It's an arduous mental wrangling that takes place, and occasionally I can rope myself in.
Now that I am one paragraph into this update, I can feel the veil of the artist lifting, and the logical side of my mind (the engineer) taking over. It's the side that lets me organize things, or trouble-shoot a problem with my recording stuff, or fix (or try to fix...) the van. It's an ongoing romance, or full-bore struggle between The Artist and The Engineer. Ha, look at that. I just wrote a note to myself to use "The Artist & The Engineer" as some sort of title in a song, album, or what have you. My desk is usually a mess of post-its (or old guitar string envelopes in lieu of post-its) telling me what I need to get done, or what I need to remember to do. Some of the post-its are aged, and flecked with dust, while others are fresh and new and optimistic. As I complete a task, I crumple up it's post-it and throw it out, feeling a sense of accomplishment. I'm strange in this regard. I haven't completely figured out my work habits, and I'm not sure if I want to, just to keep that ethereal gas of undiscovered and uncharted feelings coming at me full-throttle once in a while. To be able to focus everything through the same canal is an uninteresting prospect for me. Perhaps it's partly fear, and the other is just a sense of knowing what ropes to grab. Which ones will hold you up, and others that will tangle you up and leave you watching things unfold as they should, while you are stuck in the wrong place...Not sure I am still making sense. I think "The Artist" has taken back control...I should probably get factual with this website update at some point.
I love this freedom though, to be able to just put some journalistic babble or for lack of a better term, throw-up, right on to the world-wide-web. I remember the 90s when websites were very simple, and computers had far less memory and capacity than smart phones do today. The comforting noise of a 56k dial-up modem doing it's magic - Something that the generation after mine shall never experience. Those were the days of demo tapes and flyers and compilations, and sharing songs with your friends, and taping songs you dug off the radio. I'm thankful to have grown up in the time I did, and for the experiences that I had and continue to have. I remember first getting into the local New Hampshire music scene. Everything was thrilling. People were booking shows, taking photos, putting out independent albums. There was excitement, encouragement, and occasionally some violence would hinder any goodness of a show, but there is bound to be a few meat-heads in the bunch with some misdirected anger that is just begging for a target.
For good, or ill. That's a good way to put it. It's all perspective. I still love the guitar. It still fascinates me and I still am but a student in the school of music and of the world (ha, that sounds pretentious, doesn't it? "Student of the world" Ha!)
Each time I set up my Tascam recorder, and start plugging in cables and setting up microphones, and solving little problems, and digging into my boxes of cables and gear, I am reminded why I love creating music. Hearing something amazing and thinking "Holy shit, I want to do that! How do I do that?" Reminds me of when I was quite young, playing with my Dad's old stereo, wondering what all the settings did, and just being fascinated with it. In a lot of ways, I'm the same dude. But that dude has taken in a lot of things over the years, and his outlook has broadened. Friends come and go. Guitars get bought and sold. New music is discovered, and that fascination continues to grow.
Friends and occasional website readers (If I haven't lost you due to lack of updates...) I have been working lately on new recordings. Yes! You would consider them "demos" perhaps because of the nature of the way I have been doing them, or perhaps because they are being recorded at my home, but damn. They sound excellent! I'm already cookin' up plans for the next release, and am anxious to start digging into the live record that was taped at my album release show for The Lesser-Known Tristan Omand this past April. The crowd that evening was electric, and I felt right in the mood for obliging with some of my own electricity. As folked up as possible. It was a good time. A life-affirming time. A reminder of good things. Of why I dig all this music craziness. The late nights, driving back home several hours after a gig, going over in my mind what went right and what could have been better. The tired feeling in my arms, after pulling up at home, grabbing my guitar and heading inside well after midnight, feeling totally jazzed and awake just over the thrill of music and the journey that comes with it should you go after it. Here I go, getting off on a tangent once again, but goddamn, I'm glad to be here. That thick skin you hear about needing takes a while to build up, and while I feel relatively well protected by my own layers I've built up over the years, I am only human, and was blessed or cursed with an over-active mind that can be both rewarding and tiring in the same breath. (How many f%$king times have I said "mind" in this post already? sheesh. Ha, I just said "sheesh" What am I, a Looney Tune?)
Well, as always thank you for listening. And check out the Tour Dates page for my whereabouts. Exciting gig to announce for the first week of September. An opening slot that I'm honored to do. Will promise to write more. Cheers!
news - june 13, 2016
Thank you to New Hampshire Magazine for naming me Editor's Pick for Best Singer-Songwriter. What an honor! By no means do I wake up in the morning, stretch and say "I'm the best!"...I just get up, do my work, and try to get by making music that I feel confident and proud of. When an honor such as this is bestowed, I can only humbly accept and express gratitude. Thank you. I feel as though I am saying that a lot lately - Thank you. It's a phrase that goes a long way, and I truly mean it when I say it. Cheers, NH Magazine. I look forward to joining the rest of the Best-Of folks at Fisher Cats Stadium in Manchester, NH this Thursday, June 16th. You can purchase tickets or learn more about the festivities by visiting www.bestofnh.com. Also, this Friday June 17th, my songwriter series Six Strings, Three Chords continues at New England College Concord, with special guest Lynne Taylor. I hope you'll join us. Check the TOUR DATES page for more information.
news - june 5, 2016
The tour was an excellent time. Thank you to all the kind people that came to the shows, the bookers at venues that hosted me, the staff of all the various diners I ate road food at and killed time at. Thank you to the folks who hosted me on their couch or guest bedroom. Looking forward to getting back out again in September. Dates coming soon. Added a bunch of gigs to the Tour Dates page, so please check 'em out.
July 2nd in Newburyport, MA on the Newburyport Waterfront, I will be opening for The Figgs, and Barrence Whitfield & The Savages, which I am excited for. I will also be appearing a little sooner, at the 2016 Best Of New Hampshire show on June 16th. Thank you NH Magazine! Also, Six Strings, Three Chords continues on June 17th at New England College Concord. Flyer below.
news - may 16, 2016
Well folks, I am officially on the road, touring the east coast in support of my new album The Lesser-Known Tristan Omand and I suppose, my music in general. It started on Friday with my songwriter series at NEC Concord in New Hampshire, which was excellent. Thank you to Miketon Graton for playing, and to all the kind folks for coming out. Saturday had me at Vinyl Destination in Lowell, MA for an in-store performance. Wow! What a fun time that was! Thank you to all my new friends who stopped to chat, or pick up an LP. And a big thank-you to Dave, who owns and operates the shop. You are a gentleman, and a scholar of records and all things good and proper. Sunday, I found myself at The Stomping Ground in Putnam CT for an afternoon set, which was totally laid back and fun. I really enjoyed it. What a special place! As I write this, I am currently being a WIFI mooch at a Starbucks in a giant mall in Danbury, CT trying to get some work done before my gig at Billy Bean's Cafe & Pub. I don't think they mind. I am just one of the many minnows, with a Mac screen in front of me and a strong coffee to my right. I dig this life. The vagabond stuff that comes with independently touring the US on a fixed budget. Last night, I slept in a hotel parking lot after taking in a late night movie, solo style. The hotel staff never kicked me out, and I woke up sort of rested, but thankful that I had the money in my pocket instead of the semi-comforting, yet loneliness of a hotel room. Someday I will have that van with a custom built bed and interior. Gotta save up! My wants are small. I just want to do what I am happy doing, which is music. I will keep on keepin' on as long as my heart beats. Thank you for checking in. I am in the process of opening a separate Tumblr account to keep up with my wanderings. Will keep you posted on that. It will probably be embedded right here on the website. Okay friends, until next time...
news - april 21, 2016
Thank you to all of the kind folks who came out to the official album release show at The Stone Church this past Saturday. I am very humbled, and could not be happier with how it all went down. We recorded it for a live album, so stay tuned for that in the near future. Sunday in Portland Maine was also quite excellent and I'd like to thank Whetherman, Connor Garvey and everyone at Blue! Tour starts next month! Here are some dates...
5/13 - NEC Concord - Concord, NH
5/14 - Vinyl Destination - Lowell, MA
5/15 - The Stomping Ground - Putnam, CT
5/16 - Billy Bean's Cafe & Pub - Danbury, CT
5/17 - The Chubby Pickle - Highlands, NJ
5/18 - Seven Stones Cafe - Media, PA
5/19 - Borjo Coffeehouse - Norfolk, VA
5/20 - Baine's Books & Coffee - Scottsville, VA
5/21 - Baine's Books & Coffee - Appomattox, VA
5/22 - Acoustic Coffeehouse - Johnson City, TN
5/23 - Eddie's Attic Open Mic - Decatur, GA - CANCELLED
5/26 - Town Pump Tavern - Black Mountain, NC
5/27 - Black Sheep Burrito & Brews - Huntington, WV
5/28 - ArtSpring - Davis, WV - 1 pm set
5/28 - The Purple Fiddle - Thomas, WV - 3:30 pm set
5/29 - The Purple Fiddle - Thomas, WV - 2 pm set
5/29 - ArtSpring - Thomas, WV - 5 pm set
5/31 - Rockwood Music Hall - New York, NY - 7 pm set
6/1 - The Grange - Providence, RI
6/2 - The Stone Church - Newmarket, NH
news - april 8th, 2016
Well, the day is finally here! "The Lesser-Known Tristan Omand" has been released to the world on iTunes and Bandcamp. And hey, if you are one of the true originals, you'd order it on vinyl or CD, direct from me! If you have already, I thank you immensely. For all of the CD folks, you most likely have already received your copy. The vinyl, oh yes, the vinyl will be shipping out on Saturday, April 9th, and you will be notified via e-mail when your order has shipped. I will be making the trek up to Burlington, VT to pick up said records later on today around 10 am (as I write this, it is just past midnight on April 8th) and will be assembling the orders and adding in a few extra gifts as a thank-you for ordering. I truly appreciate your support. This is my fourth solo album, and it feels good to have it out into the world. If you have read this far, and live in the New England area, perhaps you'll consider coming out to the official album release show on April 16th at the Stone Church (click the button above to get your tickets! You'll save a few bucks by pre-ordering tix), because it is going to be a great show. Guaranteed. Oh man, now I'm freaking out. OK, I'm not really. This might be something like my 500th solo gig, and I still love performing and approach music with an appreciation and energy that I hope I never shake. Alright, I can feel my senses getting dulled by the clutches of tired sleep, and midnight's grasp is tightening around my head. It's about time to rest up for several hours before Friday truly begins. Thank you for checking in. -Tristan
Links to The Lesser-Known Tristan Omand :
iTunes - http://tinyurl.com/lktoitunes
BandCamp - http://tinyurl.com/lesser-known-t-o
news - march 17th, 2016
Hey folks. How are you? I'm fine. Well, a little bit overwhelmed, but that goes with the territory. I took some time this afternoon to just breathe and listen to the rain fall, and I felt progress being made. Lowered the old heart-rate a bit and tried to sort some things out in my mind. Calm that old jalopy. Even out the steam pressure. Balance the world-sized weight that my mind has piled upon my slouching shoulders. Alright, now that we got that free-form mind-spew out of the way, I should give you some factual information about my musical whereabouts, because that is the reason why this website exists...
The new album - "The Lesser-Known Tristan Omand" is so close to being released, I can almost smell that "new record" smell. I am going to pick up the CD copies of the album tomorrow, so that means that all of you generous pre-order folks will be receiving your copy soon. If you ordered it on Compact Disc, that is...
Vinyl copies of the record, well, that's another story. Those will be ready the first week of April, as I have been told by the pressing plant. Trust me, as soon as I have them I will package up the pre-orders and get 'em mailed out. Thank you for your patience, generous pre-order folks! I really, truly appreciate it.
Tour dates for May are coming together nicely, and I believe there are still a few holes that I need to plug. I'm looking forward to getting back on the road, this time for about three weeks. The road, man. Must make sure to stock up on audio books for the journey. I dig those. Last one I listened to was for "A Prayer For Owen Meaney", which turned out to be about 26 CDs in total. I got through all the way to the last disc, which turned out to be scratched. Bummer. Still haven't revisited that one for the ending, though I have summarized about what may happen. I always enjoy getting out for a few weeks and playing shows every night. Never is my purpose more heartfelt than when I am out touring. I'm thankful I haven't given up on what I love to do, though the odds are stacked a bit high sometimes. What's anything worth without a hard work? Oh well, I am getting off on a tangent. If you are reading this, I am glad you are here. Thank you. Tickets for the album release show at The Stone Church are still available. April 16th is the date, and you can snag tickets at this link: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2505344
Well, that's all for now. As always, check up on the tour dates page to see when I may be appearing in your area. And to check out the new album, visit www.thelesserknowntristanomand.com
news - february 25th, 2016
Well, here I sit once again as I have sat many times before...Working semi-feverishly at my desk, which is scattered with post-it notes of things to get done, song ideas, and whatnot. A harmonica rack with an "E" harp in it. The residual black coffee dirt at the bottom of a cup long since gone cold, to which I keep reaching for every fifteen minutes, only to find I have emptied it's contents several hours ago. Yes. We all have different work habits, and what a goddamn hard thing that is to figure out. What is that process that keeps you moving? Maybe it's a little switch that gets subconsciously flicked on, and the old iron in your head starts to heat up and sends out those vibrations. Gotta work work work before yah die die die. I just made that up. (c) T. Omand. OK man, get on point...
So the new album, The Lesser-Known Tristan Omand, is being released by Bright & Lyon Productions. Holy crap! Do you know what that means? Yes, someone other than myself is putting out an album of my music, and I could not be more thrilled. My stomach dropped and the butterflies swooped on in when I was given the proposal. Honored? Yes. Excited? Youbetcha. These cats know what they are doing, and I'm thrilled that they are taking me on. Check them out! www.brightandlyon.com
So, with that last tidbit of info, I must disclose this next one: Bright & Lyon Productions is presenting my album release show, April 16th at The Stone Church in Newmarket, NH. I am SO glad that Dan Blakeslee and Whetherman are joining me to open the evening. You may know Dan's artwork from so many incredible pieces he has put out, (oh yeah, he did the cover art for my 2014 record, Eleven Dark Horses...) and the wonderful songs that he writes. You may know Whetherman (aka - Nicholas Williams) as a world traveling troubadour folk singer who crafts some real stunning tunes. If you don't know 'em - check them out! There's a button below this post to purchase tickets for the show.
I really enjoy writing these little updates on here. I should do it more often. Perhaps I should make them less wordy, but words are just so fun to exploit, are they not? On a related note - I am reading a couple books as of late: "To Kill A Mockingbird" by Harper Lee, and "The Dude & The Zen Master" by Jeff Bridges. Good stuff. Been practicing that mindfulness thing lately too...helps out with the old anxiety quite well. Also, the latest Walking Dead episodes have been pretty nuts. Yes, I am into that show like many others. It's been interesting seeing the characters age and progress, if they haven't been mauled by zombies. I've also been working on a fair amount of guitars lately, which I enjoy quite a bit. Making a neglected instrument shine and play great is a sense of accomplishment for sure, and it's just fun work. Well, that's all I got for now. Take care, and see you soon! Check out the TOUR DATES page, will yah?
news - january 25th, 2016
Greetings, people! Thank you for taking a moment out of your day to check up on my whereabouts. I know it's been a few weeks, and for that, I apologize. Or maybe that's not too long of a period between updates...I suppose I have checked out other websites that haven't been updated in ages, and they have the equivalent of digital tumbleweeds blowing through, and a vacant feeling that gives you the chills. Sort of like a hotel parking lot after you've checked out and walk out to to the lot to see that you are the last one to do so, and only your car and the hotel employee vehicles are left... Isn't that a lonely feeling? I think it is. There is something so desperate about temporary things if you look at them with the right eyes.
I have been a madman at updating content on here, and re-vamping my web presence a bit. Because lets face it - I needed it. No one else is going to do the things that need to be done, unless those people actually exist, or you ask them. I've always been a DIY type of dude, willing to try most things before I pay someone else to do it. If the hinge on the door squeaks - grease it. If my glasses break, well, I will pilfer old screws off of an old pair to fix them. If my truck isn't running right, I'll open the hood and investigate the problem. You get what I'm saying. The feeling of hopelessness is an unwelcome guest. I've always tried to be prepared in life, in some way or another. Never been too good at keeping up with doctors visits though...I should get to that. I change the oil in my car religiously, but my body - hey, that bastard can wait! Ha, not a good plan. Gotta take care of the things you need to take care of, or they will fail you when needed most.
The new album The Lesser-Known Tristan Omand is getting very close to pressing at the vinyl plant. They have made the cutting masters, and should be sending out test pressings to yours truly very soon. To all the pre-order folks - THANK YOU! I will keep you updated on the status of the vinyl, and when I have them, I will ship them out to you ASAP. Even before the release date of April 8th (that is the plan behind pre-orders; to get in line and receive your order before the official release date! It feels cool, I've done it before. Give it a shot!) Pre-order at www.thelesserknowntristanomand.com
My spring 2016 tour is coming together nicely, though I still have some holes to fill. Dates have been confirmed in New Hampshire (Special show announcement coming soon. I'm psyched. Can't wait!) New Jersey, Virginia, West Virginia, and tentative dates in Tennessee, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maryland, and New York City. I have posted some of the more "confirmed" dates, and will be updating the TOUR-DATES page as the dates get checked off.
That's it for now, folks. I hope you are doing well, and trying your hardest to be happy. That shit requires some serious work, and is not an assumed guarantee. It takes a lifetime to truly know yourself. The road goes on forever.
P.S. - I recently had the pleasure of being the first guest on my buddy Miketon Graton's new podcast, "Northeast Sound & Story" Check it out, it was a lot of fun. I shared some stories that some may consider embarrassing, but hey, they are stories and I had a good time telling them. No shame. I also played a few new songs, one of which will be on the new album. Click here to listen!
news - january 10th, 2016
Well folks, it looks like we made it to another year. Surprised? I kinda knew things would be OK. I had that little feeling in the back of my mind that keeps me going through the darkness sometimes. I hope all is well with you, and as always, I appreciate you coming here to check on my whereabouts. You may be exclaiming to yourself "Holy crap, he finally posted the cover artwork to his new record! I wanna pre-order that thing!" Well, you are right in your assumption, and the pre-order madness has begun.
Why pre-order? Here's the answer - You get the record before the official release date of April 8th 2016, as well as a few extra goodies in the order, like all good mail-order should (at least in the creative world...) and you will be playing a role in helping to get this album out to the masses. I'm not going down the Kickstarter route for this one, with fancy rewards and handwritten lyrics sheets, because I figured we could just cut to the chase and buck the trends. That's what level-headed people do, right?
Well, another little tidbit about the pre-order is that when you do initiate said order, you get immediate download of a few tracks from the record.
Of course, before pre-ordering (shit, I've said that a lot in this post so far...) you get to listen to two songs from the album! Should I stop all this babbling and display the link? OK, I will do that, here it goes. Click the link below, if you'd be so kind!
news - Dec. 21, 2015
Sometime in early December 2015, I sat down and wrote three songs, and this was the third one. It's called "One For The Reindeer" It is sort of a tongue-in-cheek spin on the whole Christmas thing. This recording is a slightly re-mastered demo from my iPhone. I did what I could to make it presentable. And after writing it, I still enjoyed playing it, so here it is. Click here to LISTEN AT BANDCAMP
In other news, the cover artwork for the new album, The Lesser-Known Tristan Omand, is finished. I have to admit, it looks pretty awesome and I can't wait to share it with you folks. Expect the unveiling of the cover, and a pre-order link very soon. (I know I have said that a lot...)
With 2015 coming to a close, I have no choice but to reflect on it a bit, and more-so than usual. Reflection can come in many forms. Sometimes it's a skewed version of what really was and is, and other times it is a staunch recollection of all the experiences, images, feelings, and emotions that have populated a span of time. Yeah, that sounds about right. This year has been just that. A year. Another one is coming, and they will just keep piling up the older we get, and I assume we are supposed to learn from mistakes, log them in the old memory bank and just move the f*%k on. Yep, I just did that symbol thing to spell out that four-letter-word. I went there. OK, here I go just rambling off like a man on some strange mission...
To everyone who is kind enough to follow what I do, and anyone else in between, I'd just like to say thank you. Thank you, and good luck, cheers, congrats, and let's take 2016 by storm, alright? No more self-doubt. no more wishing things were better. We alter the world around us by the choices that we make, and things happen as they happen. Take it easy, and love who you love. I think it's gonna be OK.
Happy Holidays. Yes, I said that too.
news - Dec. 9th, 2015
My viewpoint on a lot of issues is usually rather pessimistic, but lately it appears some compassionate daydreaming has changed that. I have been toying with the idea that we are just caught in a transition period, though it may be a long one, and that all the rhetoric and hate-speech and Trumpisms are just some of the junk to deal with along the way.
And maybe after this transition period, the collective consciousness of the world will change so much that World Peace may become an actual possibility. This may not be in my lifetime, or yours. Perhaps I should just keep dreaming, but thinking about the prospect of World Peace feels better to me inside than the prospect of We're All Fucked...'cause I don't think we are necessarily. There's just a lot of work to be done.
Day-dreaming has been my go-to for quite a while, and I was constantly in trouble for it in school. How could they blame me? There are far more interesting things outside the brick walls of the Public School System than what is generally taught, and the places you can go in your mind can be quite impressive if you allow them to be.
There are some great teachers out there, and a lot has changed in education in the last twenty-plus years. Sometimes I wish I grew up on Walton's Mountain, or some kind of place like that. One room schoolhouse, potbelly stove in the middle. Does that even exist anymore in the United States? Probably not. Schooling shouldn't stop when you graduate, and should be continued throughout life as a self-education of sorts.
Sometimes I feel as though I should have been born in another time, and I do believe in past-lives. But maybe that feeling of being born in the wrong time is just a reaction to being overwhelmed in your current life. It's hard to keep it all going, to stay 100%, and to be true to yourself all the time. Some people appear to be able to do it, but I think they might be faking it 'til they make it. That is a hard thing for me to do. I'm not a very good bullshitter, though sometimes I am overly polite in social situations to which I mostly feel strange in, and as a result that politeness hides my true self, and after encounters like that I feel a guilt and an inkling of disservice to my soul. That shit hurts. I can't help it that I'm in my own head most of the day, and don't get much interaction with people because I am writing, or working on a project, or practicing guitar, or applying liberal coats of self-loathing upon myself when I am feeling anxious or depressed.
I remember assuming at one time that the older you got, the more you figured out. That old adage of "the more I see, the less I know" is kind of true. Sure, you get better at certain things and hopefully learn the difference between right and wrong, but if you are to spend any considerable time pontificating and theorizing and dealing with your emotions, then you are starting to explore how vast and unexplained and amazing the human mind is. I have learned how complicated my emotions can be, and I am still learning about it. Some of that may be due to environment, diet, sleep habits, coffee consumption - who knows? Maybe I was born this way. I sometimes think back on certain times in my life, and on the music I was making, and I wonder what the hell I was doing. Like, who is that guy? That's not me. Sometimes even two years time can pass, and it feels like light-years. I suppose that when it all comes down to it, the key to living a decent life is just being decent, and letting yourself grow and move about the world with wonder and amazement that we are all still here. Mistakes are part of the job.
Well, if you have gotten this far by reading my rants, than maybe you'd like an update on my music. The album is still under-way, and the cover artwork is almost done. I swear, a pre-order for the record is coming soon, as well as an announcement of album release shows.
I have been writing songs, as usual, but only a few of them have stuck. The rest are stinkers, or just exercises in writing in order to get to meaningful work. To be honest, I have been going through a bout of excess anxiety, which makes it hard to do anything, so I am thankful for what I have written. I have been staying fairly busy lately, though not as busy as I'd like to be with shows and performances. A lot of times, I am the guy in the corner at a restaurant or bar, playing from 7-10, or 8-11, or 9-midnight as the hired entertainment. These gigs slip under the radar sometimes, and I don't want to relegate myself as background music, but at the same time I am thankful to be able to play music and get paid. It's taken me almost twenty years to get to the point of being paid regularly for performing. Remember that anecdote about learning from mistakes? Yep. It hasn't been easy, and it might be a struggle for quite some time, but struggles are worth it if you love what you do.
I hope you are all happy and well, and sometimes I wonder if anyone is even reading this stuff...If you are, feel free to go to my contact page and say hey, or ask a question about something you've been wondering that I do. Who knows. I admit it, I kind of suck at social media, and apologize if you feel that way too. It's hard to be a businessman and an artist at the same time. But you should rest easy knowing that this website isn't going anywhere, and for the last nearly six years, it has been my home on the web and the best way of getting info about what I do, though it has seen many face-lifts and changes over the years. I like this layout the best. Take care, folks.
news - Nov. 9th, 2015
Once again, upstate New York proved to be quite beautiful at this time of year, even with most of the leaves down from the mighty trees.
I was making my usual twice-a-year trip to play at the Black Eyed Susan Acoustic Cafe out in Angelica, New York. I had brought my Canon A1 film camera with me, but only managed to snap off a handful of shots at several side-of-the-highway vistas. That is, I put on the blinker and get in the breakdown lane, roll down the window and snap a few shots and then it's back on the road again...
I had the good fortune of driving into the sun as it was being obscured by all kinds of loosely formed clouds which resulted in all different shades of orange, red, yellow, purple, and blue, if you looked hard enough...It was a beautiful day. And every once in a while, after that beautiful sight with all the different cloud colors, there would be a large, grey and ominous mass and the clouds would spit some rain at me, only to cease and go back to sunny skies after some minutes pass. It made me appreciate each thing. The duality of dark and light, good and evil, stormy and sunny, happy and sad. All meaning different things to everyone.
The show was very good, though attendance was easily counted on two hands. No toes were needed. Sometimes shows like that remind you of who you are, and you just own it and make the best of it, and most of the time it's a whole lot of fun. I really enjoyed myself, and the folks that were there, if you are reading this - thank you.
Album update: The cover art is being done by a really great artist, and will be an interpretation of a photo of me from a recent session and will be done in either oil paint or charcoal. I can't wait to see how it comes out! Mastering shall begin soon on the raw studio tracks, and the vinyl plant has been contacted. So in other words, my stress level has dropped considerably, and I am looking forward to getting this thing out there. Special guests on the recording include: Brian Coombes, Delanie Pickering, Jay Psaros, and Will Kindler - They all did fantastic work...
I also have a few other future projects up my sleeve and will roll those out when the time is right. Here's a glimpse: an in-depth live album, and a book of fiction. More to come. Stay tuned.
-New album planned for release, Winter 2016
-Feature article in Howl Magazine 9.14.2015
-8/5/2015, opened for John Fullbright at Prescott Park Arts Festival, Portsmouth NH
-2014 Spotlight On The Arts Awards - Best Singer/Songwriter & Song Of The Year
-2015, Tristan Omand “Eleven Dark Horses” accepted to Pandora.
-Second album, ”Wandering Time” available on vinyl in black, gold, white.
-Featured on NHPR’s “Word Of Mouth” 2012
© 2016 Tristan Omand