Saturday, October 24, 2020

Harvest Home, Part Three: Missisquoi Horizon

 


The Missisquoi River meets Lake Champlain in northern Vermont. In this place, sky and water make big horizons and a sense of open space unlike any other part of Vermont.

This country is more than essential to the Abenaki; a rich and fecund homeland. 

The long, spacious composition below, made in the summer of 2020, is intended as a sonic land, sky, and waterscape: an elemental imagining in sound of this powerful and beautiful place. The slow, swelling glissandos, played on steel guitar, are analogue to the shapes, forms, and motions I perceive in this liminal locus.  -KMB



                                                                            






                                                 Missisquoi Horizon 1

                                                 Painting by Kevin Macneil Brown,

                                                  watercolor and gouache on toned paper, June 2020.

Friday, October 16, 2020

Harvest Home, Part Two : Let's Saddle Up and Ride

 

One of the many positive things about playing western swing with Big Hat, No Cattle has been finding my songwriting muse headed not only west but back into my own past. I've found myself delving into memories of old records, long-ago girlfriends, old journeys, yard sale fiddles, and a homemade steel guitar. In New Hampshire back in the 1970s, barn dances still happened. I remember one in particular, a harvest dance.  Between sets, outside, was a jug of hard cider.  The more you drank from that jug, the more the autumn stars swirled....

This collection began as a simple gathering of solo demos intended for what might have been-- might still be someday--the second Big Hat, No Cattle record.   Although Covid sent the band into total hiatus, I still wanted to document the songs in a more "finished" way. Over the spring and summer I worked alone at home, recording, layering parts, and mixing. The result is by nature stripped down and spacious. My goal was to write, sing, play, and record with a vintage vibe, making music that might sound like it came from 75 years ago.



 

Monday, October 12, 2020

Harvest Home, Part One: Asking October

 I have been away from this weblog for a few months, but I'm back  now, ready to share, over the next few weeks,  an autumn harvest of the work I've made over the course of  the spring and summer stay-home time. 

I'll begin by presenting my new book of poetry, ASKING OCTOBER. This cycle of poems follows the inner and outer journeys of a year--October to October-- immersed in the energy and stillness of mountains, waters, skies.

  


Boundaries are beginnings here

in this place: this hard and perfect light.


North wind brings shimmer to the

gold of aspen, copper of beech

rust-fire stillness of mountain tamarack.


Nothing now to do but wait

for night, all colors covered

to rest deep in moonlight, shadow.


And above--far above, too distant for our ears

to receive--

flights of geese in southward motion, calling.


Yes-- too far, too high for our ears

to receive,

and yes, when we listen

we hear.


-Kevin Macneil Brown


ASKING OCTOBER is available through Amazon.com




Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Mountain Waters- new paintings


I have been drawn, since the Stay Home/Stay Safe order here in Vermont, even more than usual to places where water, rock, stillness, flow, and reflection come together.

I go to these places in reality, or in memory and contemplation.

Here are some recent paintings.




                                                                   Morning River

                                                 
                                                 
                                                             Mountain Waters 2
                                                                         

                                                 
                                                        Hinman Lake, Routt County, Colorado

                                               

                            Paintings by Kevin Macneil Brown, watercolor and gouache on paper, 2020.

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Western trails and tales-- new paintings and drawings.

One of my favorite things to do is to head for the Old West in my memory and imagination, drawing and painting the journey.
The scenes and people that arrive when I do this usually have stories to tell me-- stories that might eventually show up in my writing.
Here are some recent works in this vein, made mostly on toned paper, which helps create the retro mood I'm seeking.





Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Mountain, Sky, and Dreaming Water- New Music



Wednesday, March 25, 2020

In these places

Painting again to return to places: Aspen grove, mountain waters calm or rushing, the mountains on my home horizon,....
I go inside to find the memories, feelings, textures, and then follow paint, pencil--whatever tools suggest themselves--onto the paper.
This is one way I can put myself into places of power and resonance, share them with others.-KMB