After landing a private show in Martha’s Vineyard, I figured why not get to the big city!? That said, I’m excited to announce that I’ll be playing in New York City this summer at the lovely Rockwood Music Hall. The room only seats 60 people so if you know someone in the area, which we all do, please help spread the word. Let’s make it a sell out!
Tyler Stenson @ Rockwood Music Hall (Stage 3)
New York City, NY
This last weekend, I was hired to play an evil part in a master plan. A former stranger named Roy contacted me, asking if I would serenade the moment of his proposal at Multnomah Falls — and the honor was all mine.
Disguised as dime-a-dozen busker on the bridge, I was instructed to play my original song As the Crow Flies, where upon completion, he would drop to his knee. As you’ll see in the video below, the moment I heard her say “of course!,” to her total surprise, I then turned toward the newly engaged couple and played their song, Thinking Out Loud, by Ed Sheeran. What a sweet moment.
NOTE: You’ll notice the audio is over-dubbed because all you’d be able to hear otherwise is a loudly hissing waterfall. You’re welcome.
A video posted by Tyler Stenson (@tylerstenson) on
Music is something special. As often as I get down on myself for not being where I want to be in my career, it is moments like this — meeting new people and playing a special role in their story — that remind me simply: The journey IS the reward.
This last Memorial Day Weekend, I took a personal road trip through Washington, Idaho and Utah, playing several shows along the way. Many were the miles, but so too were the smiles.
Here’s a brief recap of how the Memorial Day Weekend tour went.
THE RENTAL CAR:
To start things off, despite their motto of “we’ll pick you up,” I ran three miles to the nearest Enterprise rental car facility, as a way of pre-stretching my legs for the long-haul ahead. Upon arrival, I lucked into the free upgrade of a Prius — a small gift that was worth its weight in gold. I tell you, I’m a believer. I rarely had to stop for gas!
A photo posted by Tyler Stenson (@tylerstenson) on
As the first leg of the trip, anticipation was high. In my typical road trip fashion, the radio was never touched — instead, I used the time to write songs, as I do best, in my head. I finally completed the last verse of How Bright and put the finishing touches on two brand new songs, Good Comet and Middle Daughter. A perfect way to pass the time.
Pullman was swell. I was invited to play a very cool singer-songwriter series in a lovely listening room called The BellTower and, in all truth, it was the kind of gig you dream of — a quiet room, filled with new faces you didn’t have to exchange your pride to promote to. My hosts were all kinds of gracious and the new faces of the audience were warm. Thank you.
Bright and early, and already running low on sleep, I set out for Boise. For five hours, underneath “intermittent rain and shine, where the sky restarted six or seven times” (Josh Ritter), I traced the banks of the Salmon River, occasionally darting across farms and fields and mountains, only to return to the river again. Not a bad way to spend a morning. Not a bad way to spend a life.
Boise held for me two shows. The first was a “day gig” at the Riverside Hotel resort where I played my music for a lunch crowd with frequent turnover. Nobody was really listening, but that’s not what they were there for. I know that. These are the moments I latch on to the few, dear faces that are paying attention and supplement the other’s lack with the comfort that I’m singing in the open air and strumming my guitar by the river — and getting paid to do so. Not a bad way to spend an afternoon. Not a bad way to spend a life.
The night gig was much more of what I love. In front of a full house at the Flying M Coffee Garage in Nampa, I enjoyed another silently attentive room like the night before. My stories were heard and a mutual love was shared. Not a bad way to spend an evening. Not a bad way to spend a life.
And then the cold, harsh reality …
My Boise show wrapped up around 11pm, but I had to be in Salt Lake City (five hours away) at 6am for my performance on KUTV2 morning news. When you book a tour that takes you away from your home market, you take any promotional opportunity that presents itself and do the math later. In this case, the math didn’t quite add up. I would need to drive through the night and there would be no remainder for sleep. No way to spend a night. No way to live a life.
That’s when the best man on the planet stepped up to the plate.
In second grade, I had to write about the “most inspirational person in my life” … and I chose to write about my brother-in-law, Kim, the most generous human alive. He’s always been there for me and my family and this, the darkest hour of my tour, was no exception. You see, he lives in Boise and attended my show, but more, when he found out I’d be driving through the night, he wasn’t having it. Instead, the saint insisted that he would drive for me, while I slept in the passenger seat. I fought it for one second before realizing he wasn’t backing down.
I never really slept too deeply, but being able to close my eyes for a long while allowed me to not be a total zombie on the morning news (at the least) and may have saved my life (at the most). Thank you Kim, for driving me through the night and everything else.
SALT LAKE CITY:
Arriving in Salt Lake City at 5:30am and reporting for sound-check at 6am, it’s safe to say, the morning news was a blur. I remember everyone being very kind … other than that, I’ll rely on the photo and video below to tell the story.
A photo posted by Tyler Stenson (@tylerstenson) on
Then I slept.
That night was the final show of the tour — Velour Live Music Gallery in Provo, UT — and a fitting finale it was. My, my what a special night. It was nearly a capacity crowd, dead silent, so magical and better yet, I got to share it with my lovely little sister Austi, as her band Aspartame Sunshine opened the night in a brilliant manner. I left there floating and owe a debt of gratitude to all that showed up in support. Much love.
HIGHLIGHTS FROM VELOUR
“THAT I’LL KNOW YOU…” (FULL SONG)
ON THE ROAD AGAIN:
And then the long, two-turn road back home to Portland. In all, I covered over 1900 miles in just four days and spent a lot of time to myself, scheming my next move. I don’t hit the road as often as I use to, marriage will do that to a man, but after such a productive trip that filled my heart to the brim, the Prius and I might need to venture out again, when the gas light starts to glow.
ONE WEEK until I set out on my Memorial Day weekend tour that will take me through Washington, Idaho and Utah. I’m excited to hit the road so check out the show dates below and spread the word — whether it’s you or your friends in the area, I’m looking forward to seeing you fine Elegant Folk in these fine cities!
Across the years, I have received wonderful support from the Portland Radio Project AND Oregon Music News on a number of occasions — and that is why I’m particularly honored to be able to give back. Yes, with a full heart, I’m proud to say I’ll be performing at a very cool benefit concert this weekend, in support of these fine local entities, at my favorite local venue, with some of my favorite local musicians! What could be better?
As you can see, I’m brimming, so please join me (and my full band) at this lovely event and stick around to enjoy performances by Roseland Hunters, Acoustic Minds, Redwood Son, Mbrascatu, Tyler Stenson, Laura Ivancie, Sarah Billings, Jordan Harris, Tim Snider, Pilar French, The Sale, Will West, Amber Sweeney, Rob Rainwater and Michele Van Kleef.
You won’t regret the night or the resulting warm heart.
“Music Matters” Benefit Concert To Benefit the Portland Radio Project and Oregon Music News
Saturday May 2, 2015 @ Aladdin Theater
I will be appearing live on Portland Radio Project TONIGHT as promotion for my upcoming show at The Alberta Rose Theatre (4/12). I’ll be talking music, playing some some songs and, what I’m most excited for, they’ll be playing a list of songs that influenced me and my music growing up … a self-curated list of some definite classics!
STREAM IT LIVE:CLICK HERE Tyler Stenson on Portland Radio Project Wednesday April 8th @ 8pm
w/ Special Guest Samsel and the Skirt
I’m excited to announce that a very cool opportunity to play in Pullman, WA (for my first time ever) just fell into my lap! I figured, while I’m at it, I might as well dip into Boise and Salt Lake City for a couple shows — a Western Weekend, if you will.
That said, the final venues are still being negotiated but the dates are set in stone. Please, do me a favor, SAVE THE DATES, spread the word and stay tuned for details!
#TylerOnTour 5/21 – PULLMAN, WA 5/22 – BOISE, ID 5/23 – SALT LAKE CITY, UT
I’m happy to say I’ll be playing my favorite kind of show in less than 2 weeks — all ages, early start and full band — what more could I ask for? Yes, I’m pairing up with one of my favorite bands in Portland (Samsel and the Skirt) at one of my favorite venues in Portland, so be sure to spread the word and join me for this lovely affair!
Tyler Stenson + Band @ The Alberta Rose Theatre
Sunday April 12th
Doors at 5pm | Music at 6pm | Home by 8pm
ALL AGES welcome with guardian
With my new photos, I decided it was time to update my artist one sheet — a concise document that offers booking agents and promoters a quick snapshot of who I am and what I do. Of course, I plan on fully refreshing my brand in the very near future, however, until then, here’s a peak at my 2015 artist one sheet (as it stands for now).
Last month, I announced that my music video for “This Too Shall Pass” had been selected as a Semi-Finalist in the International Songwriting Competition music video category — well, now it has been officially upgraded to a Finalist! This honor means that the video (filmed and produced by Americonic Films) is amongst the top 2% of the 18,000 entries in the competition.
This is a huge honor, one that I do not take lightly. Thank you all for believing.
That said, the category winner will be selected by a panel of judges and the winner announced in late April. Although I have no control over this outcome, I DO have the chance to win the “People’s Voice” award by amassing the most votes from the public. Please help me make this happen …
VOTE “THIS TOO SHALL PASS” FOR PEOPLE’S VOICE AWARD:
• GO TO: http://www.radioairplay.com/voting
• Click the “Music Video” category
• Scroll down and vote for “This Too Shall Pass” (by Tyler Stenson)
Thank you again … and enjoy the FINALIST video one more time