a driver, a baker, a songs-of-faith maker

Posted by on Sep 27, 2012

It’s a new season for SmallTall Music. For the first time in half a dozen years or so I am not planning an extended fall tour. What’s going on?

Over the past while we have come to the conclusion that I should go back to the original vision for SmallTall Music as a sustainable, long-term, “part-time” ministry. This means seeking other part-time work to supplement our family income, while continuing the musical vocation on a more part-time basis. Bi-vocational ministry, in other words.

As a result, I will not be touring at the same rhythm as I have been for the past 6 years or so (when I have typically done a month-long tour each spring and fall, as well as shorter ones here and there). I will still do some long-distance touring, but not at the same pace. My closer-to-home musical involvements and availability remains unchanged – I expect that the shift from “full-time” to “part-time” will mostly affect the long-distance touring schedule, and a somewhat slower pace for ongoing writing and recording projects.

You can see my fall performance schedule (so far) here – and feel free, of course, to contact me if you’d like to explore setting up a visit to your community!

So what about the other “part-time?” Well – for the month of August I was driving a corn-delivery truck for Rouge River Farms, delivering local corn to grocery stores in the Greater Toronto Area. And as of the beginning of September I’ve been working at the Reesor Farm Kitchen here in Stouffville as… get this… a baker! That’s right – I get up in the morning and typically make 24 dozen muffins or so by 8:30 am… and then it’s on to cookies and pies, sometimes brownies or rhubarb coffee cake… (they haven’t started me on the bread-making yet, but that will come…)

“A little bit of yeast makes the whole dough rise…”

So I find myself revising the old nursery rhyme to fit my current bi-vocational status… “a driver, a baker, a songs-of-faith maker”…

In many ways this feels like another mode of “community supported music” – folks in the community prepared to give me a job (and who are flexible and understanding regarding scheduling, as I combine this work with my ongoing music ministry). I am grateful.

Just to be clear – this is not a “turning away” from my musical vocation. If anything, I believe this transition is a way to make it stable and sustainable, hopefully for a long time to come. There continue to be plenty of musical projects on the go… Keep checking this space (and/or join the SmallTall Music e-mail list on the right-hand column of this website), and I’ll be keeping you posted.