Hey everyone. I just had to reload all of my journal entries since the beginning of this website which was everything since about 2006. It was a pretty big job. I was glad I did it though because it allowed me to review the progression since the start of my music career and all of the wonderful things that have happened with regard to my music, my family and life in that time extending to the ‘North Ontario Tour’ and our amazing ‘Homestead Wedding’ both of which took place in 2010. More recently however it has been a rough patch for our family as within the last couple of years we have gone through some hard times for sure. Without going into much detail about it I will just say that we have lost several of our closest family members and have had to deal with several degrees of loss of which I know we will never come to accept or truly understand. This alongside the regular daily life activities may account for part of the reason why I have not updated this journal as often as I used to do. In light of this I thought I would take a little time right now to discuss what’s going on with my new album release and try to start to get back into the groove of regularly updating this blog. Generally speaking, it does not look like I have posted much on here since the “Kit and Marcus Show” – North Ontario Tour Feb 2010 so I will start there. That tour was amazing! It was everything I had hoped it would be and a great reprieve after being cooped up for a year raising my two young boys and a way to let loose before I had to head back to work after the parental leave. It was a once in a lifetime chance and opportunity to be able to plan and execute my own tour from the ground up and have it be a complete success founded on only our original music. A very rare and cherished event and certainly a dream come true. Marcus started to keep some journal entries along the way but somewhere around Timmins we just couldn’t keep up with the writing. Maybe one day he will finish those entries and I can add them to this website as there were some pretty neat things to talk about from that tour. After that tour I headed right back into my teaching career and with the Ontario curriculum changes and being busy with two young boys at home there was almost no thinking of music. I did still perform a few times for special events like the Enbridge Music On Main Festivals, Local and Live Idol Style Competitions and the Barrie/Mady/Budweiser New Music Fest with great media coverage and larger crowds then in the past but my gigs were far and few between. Although my musical career continues to grow at every opportunity aside from the BIG tour and those regular annual gigs I was not able to focus much more of my energy on anything but the wedding to my beautiful wife, and raising our wonderful family so my music generally speaking took a back seat. There was the odd time I was able to sit and try to write a song but it was near impossible to make it through to the finish so I had a whole lot of unfinished workings going on but nothing concrete. Then I tried sitting down and working with Laura while writing my songs. I would play the guitar and she would write the lines down on paper so I did not have to put down the guitar after every new line. She was also able to add her own creative contributions to some f the songs and things started to move along more quickly. I mean the times of being able to stay up all night and write or record songs have gone to the wayside. It worked out really well to have Laura work with me and she was able to help me write the last three or four songs for this new album in a much more efficient way then I had done in the past. In the end the songs got written but I still had to make time to get into the studio to lay down the recordings. This in itself was challenge due to the fact that I had recently purchased new equipment for the studio and had not yet fully learned its functionability. Furthermore, with a young family and a full time teaching career recording sessions were a ‘once in a while’ occurrence. I had a few songs recorded shortly after the tour but it was next to impossible to find the time to focus. Honestly it was not a priority as my family and career always have and always will come first. That however did not stop the fact that I had a deep desire to get back at it and so as a family we started to find solutions that would work. Long holiday weekends, march break, Christmas holidays, Easter etc I would thankfully be given an empty house for a day or two at a time and could focus on the recording and production aspects of the new songs and eventually new album. I could only do one song per “empty house” opportunity so you can imagine and understand how and why it took so long. However “ITS NEVER TOO LATE” as far as I am concerned. What the rush anyway. I mean I knew it would eventually get finished and I would get the chance to showcase my new material. I just knew it might have to take longer then originally expected. In the end it has taken about four years from start to finish to find the time and follow through with the writing, recording, mastering etc and the day is coming near when I will be able to showcase my new project. I have a couple of great improvements over my last album aside from many great new songs. I have rebuilt the studio with a much more advanced DAW Roland VS Motorized 2400 workstation with lots of new extra tools and software. That was complicated in itself and partly why it took me so long to record anything. I had to learn a whole new system and it is very complex. I still only know the basics but will grow and learn at each km of use. I also have decided to get some additional mastering completed just to add some final finishing touches and give a new ear to my sound. This was really hard for me as I like to be known as the guy who does absolutely everything himself when it comes to music but it was suggested and a necessary part of the process to bring my level of production up a notch over my previous releases. I am happy to say that after a few bumps in the road I am pretty satisfied with the outcome of the mastering. It is by no means the best you can get, actually it is probably the lowest end mastering job but again I did most of it myself prior to that part of the process so it did not need that much and I was not going to spend 10 000 having the CD shipped to New York to be mastered by the best engineers so that it sounds like a major record label release. That’s not my style or the sound that I am looking for. I prefer a much more organic grass roots style sounding original independent folk rock home studio release anyway. Then there comes the release. I had to kick that up a notch too. So I have decided to release the record to I-tunes this time around and direct most of my supporters toward downloading my music via I-tunes so we can all save both money and the environment. I am already shipping 150+ CD out to radio and will manufacture approximately $200 for sale to family, friends, gigs, etc. They will also be processionally sealed this time with an actual UPC Barcode as well. I may even re-release some of the “My World” songs to I-tunes if sales go ok with the new album first. I am hoping for more support this time around with regard to music sales. I think last time around I sold most of my records either at the CD release party itself or the tour. I had distributed about 400 or so in total sales and promotion but barely broke even. The entire process was still worth every step as I gre immensely as a musician in all aspects of the industry. I received a ton of media support both in Ontario and across Canada and these news headlines and radio charts were nice rewards to a job well done. You must remember I am completely grassroots and independent so typical success is not easy to come by. Making several campus and community radio charts and even some mainstream radio and gig royalties made me feel like I was doing something that was worthy. I don’t think I can expect the same radio support this time around but it would be great if it does happen. What I am hoping for more this time around is if my supporters (family, friends, and fans) will go to the I-tunes website and download my songs so that I can see a reward of the different kind and so that my messages and music spread throughout this planet long and far. The new album “Never Too Late” is scheduled to be released April 23, 2013 but there will be many sneak peeks and video songs floating between my many internet music sites for you to explore and be a part of the journey. Check out CBC, Twitter, Youtube, Myspace and Facebook to be a part of the process. Your support is truly appreciated.