(see the full issue of this gina mail)
My twenty-twelve started with a healthy dose of rock, singing back up for The Kills who flew me coast to coast for MTV and NPR broadcasts on some incredible stages. I landed an official showcase at the Folk Alliance in Memphis; the band and I rocked Continental Club with Vallejo for our most successful Austin 4 El Salvador benefit concert yet, followed by our first A4ES Party Barge on Lake Travis — a new summer must!
The year continued with a trip to NYC for the Latin Alternative Music Conference where I won a guitar signed by grammy-winner Carla Morrison; a performance along the banks of the Mighty Mississippi in St. Cloud, Minnesota; a feature in Southern Living; a warm welcome at Illinois State University; a 24-hour trip to Las Vegas for the Latin Grammys; and a second tour in Japan as the official Austin Music Ambassador with Nathan Hamilton!
But, perhaps the most incredible thing that happened this year was you. Your outpouring of support for my new album blew my mind and inspired my heart. Thanks to you, we have two weeks blocked off in January for solid music-making in the studio and I can’t wait to share the rest of the quest with you!
The band and I were hoping to see you this Wednesday, January 2, 2013, for the Austin Vida showcase, but I have been battling a severe cold and don’t have a voice with which to serenade you We had to cancel our slot, but please go support Son Armado and Mauricio Callejas and other Free Week Austin artists. Its’ the first week of 2013 and the music is FREE!
Here’s to an incredible 2013!
Kittens are cute. It’s just plain true. And there are three of them living in my storage shed on the patio! I haven’t seen kittens in years, not since I was a kid with cats aplenty at our house. One day at the grocery store, my mom and I counted up how many cats we’d had. Something close to 4o! Let me explain…
See, whenever we got our cats snipped — girls or boys — they would inevitably meet an untimely demise within two weeks. Maybe whatever the vet snipped was essential to outdoor survival; dodging kids on bikes or speeding cars or escaping the jaws of dogs. In any case, we stopped getting our cats fixed because it was the kiss of death for them. As a result, we always had kittens.
I must have been 12 when we got the sisters, White Sox and Two Sox. White Sox had four white stockings to go with her gray overcoat and Two Sox had, well, two. One day we hear the faint squeaks of a new litter coming from the bushes and discover White Sox’ and her three beautiful babies. Within two weeks, she was killed by dogs, her little ones left as orphans. We bought orphan milk and some droppers and were quite enjoying feeding them when one day, Two Sox — who had just birthed four kittens of her own — pounces on the wooden picnic table where we’re feeding the little ones, takes them by the back of the neck and runs off with them, one by one. Minutes later, we find her sprawled out on the patio with 7 eager mouths, each nuzzling, pushing, prying, vying for a nipple, and mama, left to endure.
The scrawny mama cat on my porch is fierce. She’s constantly beating up on Red (my spoiled indoor fluffball) when he ventures outside for a morning stroll. What a wuss! I don’t know where she’s finding food, and feel bad not adopting the whole bunch.
Who wants KITTENS?!
Thomas Merton was a Trappist monk, writer and mystic. My friend Emily introduced me to his writings through a contemplative living group that centers on his work and encourages contemplative dialogue. It’s a beautifully grounding and refreshing part of my life these days.
Emily now lives and works at the McDonald Observatory in the Davis Mountains. So a couple weeks ago we decided to take our Merton and our dialogue to West Texas. Our incredible retreat to the stars inspired a little poem and I’d like to share it with you. (Plus, methinks I’d like to see it illustrated and made into a book, hehe. Any illustrators out there?)
There are mountains in Texas
Let no one tell you otherwise
Davis and his brethren
Have held me as I’ve cried.
Their stones have let me catch my breath
Their winds have whistled truths
Their trees run races down the slopes
With javelina hooves.
The Davises know the heavens well
They meet at storytime
When Sun slumps down with weary eyes
They peek skyward and recline
Like boyhood friends up after bed
They snicker and shush ‘fore the show
While the twinkles tiptoe into place
To retell stories of old.
Snug in bed, Sun shakes his head
Hillbillies never tire
Of Andromeda’s rescue by Perseus
While Zeus hurls spears of fire.
The hills roll ’round in laughter
When Davis claims aloud
“With a buckle like that on his belt
Orion must be Texas proud!”
Jupiter leans in to hear
The last tale of the night
With a belly growl he turns to dream
Of bacon at daylight
I have loved our stay among the stars
With Davis and his gang
I pray this trek not be my last
For I’ve a home out on this range.
Hi everyone and welcome to the new ginachavez.com!
It’s been a long time coming and although I am sad to see the beautiful design and wonderful dangling spoons go bye-bye, I am super excited to have a Web 2.0, SEO-friendly, easily updateable site for you. Here are a few key features: quick links to social media at top right, clickable “newsy” sliders & music samples directly underneath, my “la chancleta” blog (I am no longer using the blogspot site), my twitter feed and facebook likers hehe, and, of course, a link to receive the newsletter. I still have a lot of work left to do, so feel free to leave me comments on what you’d like to see.
Let me know what you think! -gina “la chancleta”