At long last, after many delays, our 1st CD has been released. "The Ritzy Side of Town" is available for digital download at all the usual outlets. (CD Baby, Amazon, iTunes, et al). We thank all of our fans who have supported us during this process and can't wait to begin work on CD #2!
Not much on new shows. Plan on doing a few things at Lundyville with a showcase in the fall. We have been working on our covers as of late. We enjoy playing mostly originals but feel the need to expand on our covers to connect with our audience. Some recent cover additions, and those in the works include: Wagon Wheel (we were doing it before Rucker), When Will I Be Loved (Everly Bros. Linda Rondstadt), Fulsom Prison Blues (Johnny Cash), Amiee (Pure Prairie League) & Oh You Pretty Woman (Bob Wills). We are looking at a couple of more like You Can't Hurry Love (The Supremes) and Friday I'm In Love (The Cure) we will make a final decision on the latter two once we experiment and decide whether we can offer accurate renditions of the songs while being able to expand on them creatively. As always Phil is the driving force behind our arrangements. His efforts help make EXIT 44 sound unique when playing covers.
What a great show last night. It was a pleasure and honor opening for the Grand Ol Opry veteran; George Hamilton IV. Mr. Hamilton was a true southern gentleman and consumate professional. Mr. Hamilton winters in Florida and there is a chance he could perform at Lundyville again next year. If so we can assure you we will be in attendance, whether we are on the bill or not. Lundyville is growing so much and is becoming a great little venue. We wish them continued success, they are truely dedicated to bringing music to central Polk county. That's why we took our name from them. If you ever want to check out Lundyville just take I-4 to, you guessed it, Exit 44 and go south. About a mile take a right at the big US flag and go til you se the signs.Wednesday is the acoustic open mic featuring many local singer/song writers (and M.C.'d by our own Phil Schneider). Thursday is classic country night with the inimitable Simply Country Band and you can be the star at Karaoke on Saturday night. Of course the special events are becoming more and more common, such as Mr. George Hamilton IV last night.
We are already booking events in 2013. It's pretty exciting. We were invited to do a book release party for Tom Cook in January and invited to attend the Daytona MainStreet Live by the SSA in February (showtimes on our FB and Reverbnation profiles). It really feels good to be invited to perform, especially at such a personal event as a book release party. Which, by the way, is at a public venue so all of our friends in the Orlando area can come by, enjoy the music and say "hello."
We cannot say enough about the Deland Original Music Festival held last Saturday 11/3/12. The city of Deland really is wonderful and gets completely behind this event. They have the charm and warmth of a small southern town with the amenities and sophistication of a larger city. We highly recommend a visit to Deland, especially during one of their music festivals. The venue we played, Dublin Station (porch stage) is situated off of Indiana Ave. With three small restaurants in a row offering alfresco dining we had a fantastic crowd who were very eager to hear and enjoy the original music offerings. We even drew in passersby once we began playing. While some of the clubs and main stages were geared towards rock and more progressive tastes, this outdoor venue had a more laid back, family atmosphere. Just perfect for EXIT 44 The level of entertainment was extraordinary! Phil was busy running sound for the other acts at the Dublin Station location Michael, Brooks and families seized the opportunity to explore the town. Checking out music ranging from edgy rock to contemporary Christian. We also had a great time visiting the variety of downtown shops offerings featuring arts, clothing, gourmet confections, western wear and a few funky boutiques. Guarantee there were many items available you couldn’t find in your local mall. We played two sets, one at 2:15 and a second at 5:40 to some great crowds! We started both sets with our version of Old Crow Medicine Show’s “Wagon Wheel” which had more than a few folks singing along, even a dancer or two. We then moved right into our original material featuring (in no particular order) Phil’s compositions; ‘Living My Life as a Cowboy’, ‘The Puppy Song’ and the other-worldly ‘Light in the Sky’. Michael’s featured compositions were the appropriate ‘Perfect Day’, ‘There’s a Change’ and ‘Everyone’s Welcome’ (a finalist for the festival’s Song Of The Year). The sets were rounded out with Brooks’s “He Won’t Be Back’, ‘Cheatin’ Train’ and his country tear jerker ‘If Wishes Were Diesel’. All of our material was warmly received! While Phil was chained to his sound man duties Michael and Brooks wondered over to the main stage at 8:00 PM for the festival awards presentations. The band and it’s members were finalist in several categories: Brooks for musician of the year, Phil: song writer of the year, Michael’s ‘Everyone’s Welcome’: song of the year and EXIT 44; Band of the year. Unfortunately we walked out without any bling but are proud and honored to have made it as finalists in all the categories……We’ll get ‘em next year!
Looking forward to playing the Deland Original Music Festival on November 3rd. The schedule (subject to change) has us playing the Dublin Station outside stage at around 5 and our good friends, the uber talented, Toni Brown and Ed Munson playing the same stage about an hour later. It's going to be a hoot and loads of great music for every taste. Plus, Deland is a great little town to visit.