Thursday, February 23, 2012


True Blue with Shannon Monk & The Great American Songbook

Click on any image above to view it in larger format and/or click on the arrow below to view a video of a portion of this concert.

The Great American Songbook sung by Shannon Monk with accompaniment by True Blue

Another sold-out audience greeted Winnsboro torch singer Shannon Monk, whose effortless but earnest delivery of jazz-tinged songs about love and lovers has made her a household name hereabouts and helped her hold this full house in the palm of her hand at Brubakers Restaurant and Pub on Main Street.

Shannon was backed by the same talented band that has provided accompaniment since her first concert in the town she calls home. The band, True Blue, is still led by Georgia Gagliardi, who is the group's arranger and also plays keyboard and guitar. Guitarist Kurt Bittner is the newest addition to True Blue. As usual, the band is rounded out by Ben Scarborough on bass and Rick Murray on drums.

The first set included Fly Me To The Moon, Let's Fall In Love, Come Rain Or Come Shine, I Wish You Love, It Might As Well Be Spring, Autumn Leaves, Justification Rag (a semi-serious take on theology by Gagliardi), Smile, Five Foot Two (with Shannon on her vintage/restored Maybell banjo-ukulele), It Had To Be You and Let's Do It.

An intermission followed the first set and attendees could buy copies of Gagliardi's newest CD, which includes the aforementioned Justification Rag, which is actually a serious, non-offensive look at theology with a few side-splitting bits of humor tossed in for good measure. In fact, this reporter has not heard such a mix of humor and theology since the late Rev. Dan McBride's touring concert days. Gagliardi's CD is surely worth the money for that song alone.

Shannon's second set included From This Moment On, Our Love Is Here To Stay, Misty, Popular (sung by guest vocalist Johanna Ramsey, who recently performed it in the musical "Wicked"), Slow Boat To China, I'm Old Fashioned, Too Marvelous For Words, This Is My Time (a kind of musical memoir written & sung by Gagliardi), Every Now And Then, Accentuate The Positive, Ghost Of A Chance and Second Star To The Right (which might be regarded as a bit of a tribute to Peter Pan).

To satisfy the enthusiastic audience, Shannon's ecnore number was Route 66.

The video elsewhere on this post includes Shannon Monk on Misty, Slow Boat To China and I'm Old Fashioned. It also includes guest vocalist Johanna Ramsey singing Popular.

Sunday, February 19, 2012


Happy Birthday to Angela Wylie, Tinney Chapel's Talented Songleader

Click on any image to view it in larger format:


I believe it is fair, and relatively true, to say that most of us, whatever our ages, never quite give up, or even loosen, the golden thread that ties us to our childhoods.

For some, the tie is mom's apron strings. For some it's a strange feeling of "independence" associated with what's left of that least-independent time of our lives. For still others, it's just the golden memories of our childhoods.

And what is memory, but an ever-present, always open, ever brimful time capsule that continues to feed and nourish our psyches and souls all through this earthly life.

Cher said, and I agree, that life is not a dress rehearsal.

Jonathan Swift enjoins us to live all the days of our lives, and that is likely a unique thought for some, but yet profound advice for all.

Perhaps the most sage advice comes from the Sanskrit:

"Look to this day!
For it is life,
the very life of life...
for yesterday is already a dream,
and tomorrow is only a vision,
but today, well lived,
makes every yesterday
a dream of happiness, and every
tomorrow a vision of hope."

Again, Angela, songbird of Tinney Chapel: HAPPY BIRTHDAY.

Friday, February 17, 2012


Live Poets Society Met today @ Winnsboro Emporium

Click on any image to view it in larger format.

Live Poets Society Met Today At The Winnsboro Emporium on North Main Street
In Beautiful Downtown Winnsboro, Texas

Six members of the Live Poets Society (LPS) met to exchange readings and discuss the Winnsboro Arts Scene tonight, Friday, Feb. 17, 2012.

Absent was Angela Wylie, LPS's most decorated poet, but LPS welcomed Ellie Voth from Lake Fork (originally from Redwing, Minnesota) as its newest member. Also not present on this occasion were Ayne Agassi and James Chambers.

Host/Poet Conrad Wolfman read no poetry tonight, but gave a positive report on his recent progress, and heavy writing output, with short stories and even a short novel, perhaps a novella.

Founder/Poet Bonnie Sir Kegian read “Merely Wings,” a poetic view of robins visiting her winter window. (See text below.)

Poet Amy Pierson read “A New Day Begins at Four (am),” a semi-serious spin on the supposed advantages of a day that begins just a tad too soon. (See text below.)

Poet Ellie Voth’s offering tonight was titled, “Jan.”

Two poems by Lucy Germany, “A Book” and “A Poem on Poetry” were well received.

Joe Dan Boyd read an original paraphrase of Psalm 23. (See text below.)

“Merely Wings”
Bonnie Sir Kegian

Harbingers of spring, now come the robins to my winter window
I capture the split second in my camera eye
Stress/pain/disappointment disappear, so caught up am I in the magic
scene before me

A flock of 100 birds feast
On golden china berries dangling high in the tree my grandmother
planted so long ago
then swiftly they fly down, hop on the rain-soaked brown grass fishing
for worms.

Hop hop stop/Cock your shining head/Look for what you scared up.
Jump forward/Do it all again.

A deluge of spring-soon-to-come recollections flood my memory:
Pussy willows; green bulb leaves poke their tips up;
gray skies give way to robin’s egg blue;
Mother sows starter seeds in cut-off milk carton pots
and carefully places them in the sunny south window.

My own reflection in clear rain puddles reminds me
I have felts this delight 70X, each time as full
of anticipation as before.

Hope does spring eternal on the merely wings of robins.

“A New Day Begins at Four (am)”
By Amy Pierson

I am awake……the clock says Four
Darn it anyway, I wanted to sleep just a little bit more

Emi and Mandy hear me stir ready to go out
Racing down the steps tails happily wagging
Standing at the door, doesn’t matter to them
That it is only Four

Steam from the shower swirling overhead
Ah, hot water melting the ache in my back
Sore muscles begin to relax
A whiff of coffee brewing stimulates the brain
Awakened even more
But it is only Four

Emi and Mandy want to come back in
Bright eyes looking up at me
Thank you Mom, for rescuing me and me
We want our breakfast----it’s really OK
That it is only Four

They never criticize or have a grumpy word
Their companionship upbeat just wanting to please
How could I not be happy to be accepted
And loved by these little strays

Think of all the things I can accomplish today
With a Smile on my Face crossing the “To Dos” off my list
Sing thankful praises to God
A New Day begins….I am awake
And it is…….just a little after Four

23rd Psalm paraphrase by Joe Dan Boyd, 01-28-11

The man upstairs takes care of me; my heart soars like a hawk.

He clears my path, keeps me alert, frees me from worry.

He renews my spirit & keeps me on the straight-&-narrow:
I sing His praise.

Detours through darkness don't deter me:
His light is never entirely dimmed.

His voice of courage, consolation & correction keeps me filled.

He encourages nourishment by words of friend & foe alike,
Reminding me that each is created in His image, as am I:

That He loves us all, gifts us with purpose,
And invites us to Eternal Communion.

Live Poets Society meets every third Friday of each month at Conrad Wolfman's unique venue, The Winnsboro Emporium, the jewel of Winnsboro's North Main Street. All poets, and the general public, are invited to attend future meetings, either to read or to listen or both.

Sunday, February 05, 2012


Jesus as The Great Physician Preached Today

Click on any image above to view it in larger format and/or click on the arrow below to view most of the video of Pastor Sue Gross' sermon on The Great Physician.

The Great Physician
based on Mark 1:29-41
Preached by Rev. Sue Gross @ Tinney Chapel UMC
Winnsboro, Texas

Mark 1:29-41

New King James Version (NKJV)
Peter’s Mother-in-Law Healed

29 Now as soon as they had come out of the synagogue, they entered the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John. 30 But Simon’s wife’s mother lay sick with a fever, and they told Him about her at once. 31 So He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up, and immediately the fever left her. And she served them.

Many Healed After Sabbath Sunset

32 At evening, when the sun had set, they brought to Him all who were sick and those who were demon-possessed. 33 And the whole city was gathered together at the door. 34 Then He healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and He did not allow the demons to speak, because they knew Him.

Preaching in Galilee

35 Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed. 36 And Simon and those who were with Him searched for Him. 37 When they found Him, they said to Him, “Everyone is looking for You.”

38 But He said to them, “Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also, because for this purpose I have come forth.”

39 And He was preaching in their synagogues throughout all Galilee, and casting out demons.
Jesus Cleanses a Leper

40 Now a leper came to Him, imploring Him, kneeling down to Him and saying to Him, “If You are willing, You can make me clean.”

41 Then Jesus, moved with compassion, stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, “I am willing; be cleansed.”

New King James Version (NKJV)

Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

Link for above reference:

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