(Ezra writing here:) Karen and I are in Hungary visiting our son Steven. He’s in his rookie season as a professional basketball player. He’s been in Europe for 5 months and it feels so good to talk face to face. Skype has been a big help for staying in touch, but nothing compares to being in the same place. Steven has been showing us around his world. He took us to dinner in Budapest at one of the most beautiful restaurants I’ve ever been to. The menu was absolutely delicious. The most fascinating item on the menu was goose liver ice cream over toasted egg bread, served with vanilla balsamic vinegar! That sounds like a song. We got to see a basketball game and Steven’s team won. This is definitely the furthest we’ve ever traveled to watch him play.
We’re Not a Household Name
There are so many people in this world! Can you believe most of them haven’t heard of Trout Fishing in America? At our shows we often ask the question, “How many of you are seeing us for the very first time?” After 37 years of playing music together, it always feels good to see folks raise their hands each night. It’s also amazing to go places we’ve never been and meet people that have grown up on our music. We just played with the Billings Symphony Orchestra, our first time ever in Billings, Montana. Prepared for frigid Billings symphony temperatures and piles of snow, we were greeted by warm weather and a very warm audience. Along with many first-timers, there were also a surprising number of long time Trout fans in attendance. We even met a young man who had found our music in a library when he was a child. He fell in love with it and credited us as the reason he learned to play bass. (note: We apologize to his parents) Seeing the excitement of a first time audience and feeling the love of long time fans keeps us pretty happy.
“Whitey Ford” hits the road
We’re about to take our maiden voyage in our new van, “Whitey Ford” . We are driving to Midland, Texas. Just a little over a year ago we took our last trip to Midland driving a rented van. Stretch, our old van, had been stolen with all of our gear. That sounds like a song! Keith and Ezra in back of Mr. Ford It’s time to get acquainted with Mr. Ford. We plan to read the owner’s manual for our super advanced music and GPS system. It has a backup camera too! Keith doesn’t like having it on while we’re driving forward though. He says the past is disappearing fast enough without it.
Our calendar this month takes us to new places as well as old places. We’re looking forward to seeing old friends and making new ones. Word of mouth is still our best advertising. If you know someone who lives near a place we’re playing, tell them to come out or bring them with you.
Keith and Ezra
We were in Billings, MT last week performing with the Billings Symphony Orchestra, and we also got to work with some of the schools there doing our songwriting workshops. We hadn’t ventured that far north at that time of year since our fateful January trip to Alberta back in the 90’s. It was a fantastic week and the weather was really nice! Here is a link to a story that the Billing Gazette did on one of the workshops. CLICK HERE.
Ezra is off to Hungary to visit his pro-basketball playing son. He promises to send some pictures of his adventure. When he returns we get to travel to Midland, TX to work with some really wonderful people – the Camp Fire West Texas concert at the Yucca Theater.
We hope your 2013 is starting out as well as ours!
Keith and Ezra
This Saturday we get to play with a very large band – The Billings Symphony Orchestra! We had our friend Dick Goodwin arrange several Trout Fishing songs for the orchestra and we have been practicing them. Here is a link to a video working on “Alberta Postcard” with the symphony parts being played by piano. High Tech Practicing
Then we have a break for Ezra to go see his son who plays professional basketball in Hungary! It will probably be as cold in Hungary as it will be in Billings Montana!
Keith and Ezra
It’s 2013! Happy New Year! (Imagine Barry Manilow singing “Looks like we made it…”) This promises to be an exciting year for Trout. We already have dates booked in 15 states and 1 Canadian province and it’s only the first week of January! Our new van, “Whitey Ford”, is almost ready. We dropped by Presidential Conversions the other day to have a look at the progress and make some final decisions on the interior. Keith and Ezra in new van New features for us include a Sirius/XM installation with Bluetooth connectivity, a back-up camera, a new mattress for the 7-foot bed, custom LED interior lighting, and a really good alarm system! You might remember that our old van, Stretch, was stolen last January. We got it back (sans musical equipment), but don’t want a repeat performance. Stretch will be retiring with around 495,000 miles on the odometer.
2013 brings other changes for Trout. We’d like to wish farewell and good luck to Patty Doyal, our longtime office employee. She doesn’t have nearly as many miles on her odometer!Patty has been with us for the past 14 years, only a year less than Stretch. Now she has taken a new, full-time position at the University of Arkansas. Thanks Patty! Great job!
After our extreme encounter with sub-zero temperatures in Calgary Alberta, we have often stressed that travel plans should be made according to weather. It’s good advice. Florida or the Caribbean would be an optimal place to visit in January and February. Eastern Europe, Hungary specifically, doesn’t seem like a winter destination. However, Paks, Hungary is where Steven Idlet is currently playing professional basketball. Steven’s been over there since August. After Trout’s winter appearance with the Billings Montana Symphony, Ezra and Karen are going to be visiting Steven. Steven’s Dunk Their Hungarian trip will include a couple of basketball games as well as a visit to Budapest! A couple of things we never knew about Hungary
1- Ernő Rubik invented the Rubik’s Cube! 2- László Bíró invented the ballpoint pen! It’s hard to imagine our world without those two creative uses of plastic.
Keith and Ezra
Santa Has Left the Building!
We hope you had a wonderful holiday. We enjoyed the last days of 2012 performing on the east coast. Now we are looking ahead to a short break and then we will be heading back to Garden City, NY to play at the Long Island Children’s Museum on Saturday January 12th. The concert starts at 2pm and you can get more info HERE. Phone is 516-224-5868
Happy 2013 to everyone – we are looking forward to it! Keith and Ezra
We are having sale through the end of this year. There is a lot of Trout merchandise to choose from that will be the perfect gift for the coolest people on your list. Or even yourself for that matter. Every order will have a surprise gift CD from us! We will continue this offer until Jan 5th!
If you’ve been to our shows recently, you’ve heard our new tune, “Don’t Touch My Stuff.” This is the song we wrote in response to having our van and all of our equipment stolen back in January last year. If you’re looking for a way to add this to your music collection, “Don’t Touch My Stuff” is now available on iTunes, CDBaby or any of your favorite download sites! The song could make an excellent ring tone for your smart phone. If you were smart enough, you could figure out a way for the song to play whenever an unauthorized person tried to access your computer!
MORE SINGLE RELEASES
We have had requests for these two new songs to be released so we got to work and here they are as Single Song Downloads. “Banjos on the Moon” and “The Very Best Thing.”
You can download these tasty bytes via CDbaby.com or go to iTunes (at the links above) or any of your favorite download sites.
It’s amazing to think that when we first started our record company, we were releasing our music on vinyl albums. We went to cassette tapes and then CDs. Now we’re seeing the release of music via the internet. The only music delivery systems we haven’t used are 78 records and wax cylinders. We’re not that old!
Keith and Ezra
We hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. We hope you survived Black Friday. We hope you made it through Small Business Saturday, Sunny Sunday, and Cyber Monday. Welcome to TROUT TUESDAY! True, it’s an UN-O-FISH-AL National Holiday, but we’re going to celebrate it anyway and we hope you will too. For your convenience, we’re going to extend Trout Tuesday to include the rest of November and the entire month of December. This means that we’ll have a year-end sale of a lot of Trout merchandise that will be the perfect gift for the coolest people on your list. Or even yourself for that matter. Every order will have a surprise gift CD from us!
Looking back on the year
2012 has been an ‘interesting’ year for Trout Fishing in America. Interesting is a word that can mean so many things! For example, it was interesting (in a bad way) when our van was stolen with all the musical equipment back in January. But it was interesting (in a good way) to feel the outpouring of love and concern from our friends, fans, and fellow musicians. It is interesting (in a good way) that Trout played shows in 19 states in 2012, but it’s even more interesting (in a better way) that Idaho was one of them! Yes, in 2012 we finally achieved our dream and got to play in Idaho! That made 50 states we’ve been to! Lastly, it is most interesting (in an excellent and amazing way) that we are now well into our 37th year of making music together and still love what we do! Thanks for making that possible.
Keith and Ezra
As we write this letter, Hurricane Sandy is storming the East coast. We know many of you live in that area or know people who do. We hope you stay safe and as dry as possible. Hurricanes can be so dangerous and disruptive. The best thing about them is having to eat all the ice cream when the power goes out. But it’s a small comfort.
This coming weekend is the Eureka Springs Folk Festival. This makes their 65th year! That’s older than Keith and we can’t think of any other festival that we’ve played that is older than Keith. This will be our second appearance at the Folk Festival. We’ll be performing with Karen Mal, Jack Williams, and Ronnie Cox. We’ll also be judging a songwriting contest. How did we get talked into judging a songwriting contest? Everybody wins!
Sale and Free Shipping!
We are poised for the holiday season. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Valentine’s Day, Easter, Spring Break. In celebration of this really special time, we’re having a sale on Trout stuff! Not only that, but we know that people like you like free shipping. So we are offering free shipping because we are so incredibly in touch with pop culture (that would be you). Check out our books, t-shirts and cd’s to find the perfect gift for that hard to please person for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Valentine’s Day, Easter or Spring Break.
Keith and Ezra
The heat has finally broken. Still no frost in Arkansas, but the chilly morning temperatures are a welcome relief from the crushing heat of this summer. The smell of coffee dominates the house this morning. We have a couple more ‘lazy days’ here before we get busy with October. Poor David’s Pub, The Red River Revel (Hear the song), Clayton NM, Dumas TX, Martinsville VA, Manassas VA and Branchburg NJ. And don’t forget the Eureka Springs, AR Folk festival in early November. We’ll be doing some flying, but for most dates we’ll be driving our van, Stretch, who’s closing in on 500,000 miles very quickly.
Half a million miles seems like a good time to retire a vehicle and get a new one, especially since the brakes completely went out yesterday!
Keith and Ezra were two very different kinds of students. Keith has a degree in music and Ezra dropped out of college to play music. Ezra is always quick to point out that he and Keith have the same job! Joan Hollier, Ezra’s English teacher from high school, had a big family reunion recently. Trout was invited to perform, but our schedule kept us from making it. Ezra wrote a song and made a video for his favorite English teacher. She was a great teacher who challenged her students and treated them with respect. Ezra made lousy grades in her class, but the true measure of her teaching can be found in his love for words and communication.
We love communicating with you. Our letters are a bit of a journal as to where we are, what we’re doing, and how we’re feeling. Thanks for reading the letters and coming out to the shows. It is an amazing feeling to be talking to the children of children we played for years ago. Some of you have a long history with us and others are just finding us. Check out this adorable video from a young fan! No matter how long you’ve been a Trout fan, thanks. We’ll be seeing you sooner than later.
Keith and Ezra
PS. Honey, I shrunk the bass!