Welcome to the World and Music of Dan Roark

Welcome to the world and music of Dan Roark. I have lived here for a while now and it's not a bad place to live, really. Although on some level, it's probably just as well you're only visiting. But hang around as long as you like.

Here you can listen to my songs - and buy them if you wish - read my thoughts in posts on my blog, see my pictures, and find out when and where I am playing. 

You can also hear live versions of my songs on Reverbnation, as well as see videos of live performances. You can also see my videos on, and subscribe to, my YouTube channel

 

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Not Everyone Likes Fireworks 

This was Brodie the last few nights while people were shooting off fireworks. When it was particularly loud, he would push my legs out of the way and hide under the desk. Which he also does when someone raises their voice in an argument. Or rants loudly about the state of affairs.

I took the picture when Brodie was calming down and the fireworks were not as frequent. He just looks so pitiful when something bothers him. He spent the nights sitting on the bed between us shaking. When I got up to go to the bathroom, he scratched on the door frantically. We’re still not sure about that one. He would finally lay down in bed with us and go to sleep. Unfortunately, the morons kept setting off fireworks into the wee hours of the morning.

I understand that it is the fourth of July. But there are plenty of organized firework displays to go see – some from your own yard. However, if you absolutely must break the law, bother everyone within hearing distance, take a chance on starting a fire that would be a severe inconvenience to those effected, and just be a general, loud, obnoxious nuisance, keep that in mind when you get pissed off when someone annoys you.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

Moving J.D. to Edwardsville 

I started out this year in January following our youngest son, J.D., and the U-Haul trailer to Edwardsville, Illinois. J.D. was to begin his internship in sports science at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville after he tested negative for COVID later that week. We were stopping for the night in Memphis.

We stayed in Memphis for two reasons. When you’re following a car and trailer at sixty miles an hour it takes a long freaking time to get anywhere. And it’s damned annoying. We had a room in a hotel across the street from Corky’s so we could pick up barbeque – which was the second reason. We picked up the barbeque and I set up my computer and played my set during the virtual open mic on Zoom which went to Rob Case’s Open Mic at Poor David’s Pub Facebook page. (See previous post).

We picked up some breakfast in the morning and headed out. That leg of the trip was shorter, but it seemed to take almost as long. I’d be driving along, following the trailer, when my mind would wander. I’d think “I don’t want to wait, I’m passing this guy.” Then I would remember I was following J.D. and slow back down. I actually started to pull into the left lane once before I stopped myself.

While it was true that I got the best mileage I’ve gotten in the van, it wasn’t enough better to sacrifice my sanity. I always hated Sammy Hagar’s song, I Can’t Drive 55, but I was beginning to see his point. It’s like you’re literally watching the world go by. But, on the other hand, you have time to see everything. Unfortunately, you don’t necessarily want to see everything.

At some point, I have no idea in which state, sirens began to wail behind us. One of the few times that I heard that sound and didn’t even bother looking at the speedometer. Someone from the County Sheriff’s office whizzed by. Then another siren and a City Sheriff went by. Then a Highway Patrol officer. I think a total of six cars from a mixture of agencies in all. We kept waiting to come upon one hell of a situation. But nothing.

I began to think we were cheated, not knowing what it was all about. No more sirens or surprises. Until about five or so miles later. Suddenly we heard sirens again – a number of sirens. Then what looked like the same cars came hauling ass the other way. Nothing we had seen on that side – I had a lot of observational time remember – warranted the “chase.”

Did they get a tip when they went in our direction? And then get a tip that, no, it’s the other way? Or did they go in our direction, then figure out they’d been fooled? So they came back in the same manner, with sirens blaring, so that no one would know they’d been fooled…?…

Edwardsville is a small college town. It’s a nice place to visit, but I didn’t look back when I left. J.D. has now finished his internship, graduated from Graduate School at Texas State University, and is looking for a position.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

Poor David’s/Kerrville Open Mic/Showcase 

I haven’t posted about Rob Case’s Open Mic – Poor David’s Pub in a while. Hell, I haven’t posted in a while period – with the exception of the post the other day. It’s been a strange year and a half after all. But before getting back to regular posts, I need to mention the open mic.

If you haven’t listened in and watched the Monday night show, make tonight the night you check it out. Rob and Lynda Case, who run the show, have regulars that play each week (I’m happy to say I’m one of those) and guests who also return at some point. We hope to begin doing live open mics back at Poor David’s Pub soon.

In the meantime however, the virtual open mic is also a fundraiser. Each donation is split between Poor David’s Pub and the Kerrville Folk Festival. So do yourself a favor tonight – tune in for some good “live” music and then support two venues with one donation. You won’t regret it – we have a good time!

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

The New Flavor of Potato Chips 

In the last few years, there has been a plethora of new flavors of potato chips. Obviously, the flavor in the picture is not new. But it is appropriate. The idea, I think, was to throw out different flavors and see which ones stick with popularity. Then there were the obvious novelty flavors. A lot of the flavors never stuck. Then there were the flavors that I might have thought were novelty flavors that are still offered. Jalapeno was an obvious choice and not bad. Dill pickle, not so much. But then, I didn’t think dill pickle sunflower seeds would take off – thinking it would be a novelty flavor. I was wrong.

But back to potato chips. The one flavor I thought was obvious never happened. When I eat a bag of potato chips, I look for chips that are cooked more than the others. I’ve always called them the “burnt” chips. That was why I liked the Cape Cod russet potato chips that they don’t make any more. I don’t know why – I bought the store out of bags on several occasions.

And that is the new flavor I want to suggest – an entire bag of “burnt” chips. I’m sure the chip companies have lost money on the flavors that didn’t fly – so to speak. So why not try this one? I doubt anyone in authority at a chip company will see this, but it would be nice. But if wishes were horses….well, nevermind.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

Covid, Old Girlfriends, and Law & Order 

I don’t have a picture handy to illustrate my point as well as how I have had difficulty posting when in the past two and a half weeks the refrigerator died on us, the company the home warranty people sent us to was, to say the least, less than satisfactory – meaning we still don’t have the replacement refrigerator – a friend tested positive for Covid and I had been in contact with him so I had to get tested (negative, thank you for asking), not to mention the whole holiday season thing and sons visiting. The year of 2020 can kiss my ass and will not end soon enough. New Year’s Day will last for-freaking-ever. Moving on…

When a girlfriend would break up with me – back when I had girlfriends – I would comfort myself with one thought. Even though I would never know when it happened, at some point in her life she would realize she screwed up when she broke up with me.

On a commercial for Law & Order, the district attorney presumably looks at the witness and speaks to him or her.

“What did you expect? What did you reasonably expect?”

How does this tie together? I know there are innumerable people who protested and rejected wearing a mask who die (or will) from Covid. Like my ex-girlfriends, I’ll never know when that happens. But if it is possible, I would like a recording played as they lie fading away, asking three questions.

“What did you expect? What did you reasonably expect?”

and “What did you think was going to happen, dumbass?!

___________________________________________

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

Paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

Poor David’s Pub, Kerrville, Wild Animals, Oh My! 

Okay, so the wild animals are a stretch. But a very large cat likes to settle back under the bushes in front of the house – driving our dogs bananas periodically. The cat looks like the burned cat at the end of Sweet Home Alabama – but half again as big. And I did have to get rid of a dead mouse in the middle of the driveway – for which I’m sure I can thank the cat. But there is no universe where a mouse is a wild animal, so, well, you know what, oh – never freaking mind!

But Poor David’s Pub and Kerrville Folk Festival are both real entities. At least for the moment. Like many venues across the country, they are trying to keep the doors open (and the festival/family going in Kerrville’s case). And until the government decides to, well, govern, it’s up to us to help.

A group of songwriters get together on Mondays on Zoom/Facebook to play their music in support of the two venues. Some are regulars, but there are always new songwriters in the rotation. Your duty – should you decide to accept it – is to watch and listen to the show and have a good time on a Monday. If you like the music and are so inclined please donate. The donations are divided between Poor David’s Pub and the Kerrville Folk Festival.

The show can be found at 7 p.m. CST on Rob Case’s Open Mic – Poor David’s Pub page. Rob is the host and his wife, Lynda, is the staff, the whole staff, and nothing but the staff. She spends hours inviting new songwriters and scheduling the shows as much in advance as she can. She stays in the “production” room during the show, reminding Rob of anything he missed or filling him in on new developments. And that’s not all she does. So if you watch the show, throw a comment Rob and Lynda’s way saying thanks.

In the spirit of shameless self-promotion, I am one of the regulars and I’ll be playing about 8:15. After Poor David himself talks all things PDP. It’s going to be another great show tonight. I say it every Monday, but it’s true. The cool thing is you don’t have to take my word for it – show starts at 7 p.m.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

Pandemic Beer Drinking Quandary 

Ok, so the pandemic is not a quandary. It’s straight up in our freaking face. And beer drinking isn’t so much a quandary as a given. Particularly during the pandemic that is not a quandary.

And you might be wondering (or you might not, but let’s just pretend) why, when I’m playing in the virtual open mic to benefit Poor David’s Pub and the Kerrville Folk Festival tonight, and have a big show on Friday (also at Poor David’s Pub) that I’m promoting, I’m taking time to worry about beer. And there it is folks, the pandemic in a quandary bottle (or can) with beer on the label.

Actually, I’m not so much worried about beer. There’s some in the refrigerator. It’s just that I’d like to go back (or forward) to feeling like I earned a beer. “I’ve done a hell of a lot today. Damn, I deserve a beer.” Rather than, “why the hell not, I’m not going anywhere.”

I still work of course (can you see me now), and Cyndy works from home too, but we don’t really DO anything. Even when I social distanced my butt to Colorado, stayed with our friend, Sally, and played a live (safe) show, that’s all we did. I got there, we hung out, went to my show, came back, hung out some more, and I came home. No sight-seeing, no going out for a beer, no nothing.

What would going out for a beer matter when I don’t (in my mind) deserve it. Or I deserve it, but I just can’t enjoy it. It’s sad when you can’t fully enjoy a beer.

And that’s my quandary. That, and I’ve run out of ways to use quandary. There’s nothing to do but ride this damned thing out like we’ve been doing for what seems like an eternity.

Come to think of it, I may have another idea. I’ll have a beer and get back to you.

________________________________________

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

World’s End Tour – Feeling Grateful Department 

No matter how long I’ve been playing music, I’m still amazed when someone goes out of their way to show their appreciation. I was already grateful that Tom Martinez and his staff at World’s End Brewing in Canon City, Colorado, invited me back in October and November, after months of no shows for either of us. Not only that, it was a safe and enjoyable environment for all concerned.

The October show went well, but last week’s show went especially well. The staff was great and the audience was responsive and appreciative. Our friend, Sally (Cyndy’s best friend), was with me and sitting at the bar. We stay with her when we’re in Colorado.

After my third set I packed everything up. I came back from one of my trips to the van. As I walked in the door, a guy sitting in the alcove on the other side of the door from the alcove I was playing in, stuck his head around the wall.

“Thanks for playing tonight. We really enjoyed it!”

I smiled and said thank you. In a non-covid situation I would have shaken his hand and given him a card. This time the smile and thanks would need to suffice. Before I turned completely around, he continued.

“We put something in your bucket for you.”

“Thanks again! I appreciate it.”

Then I was packed and Sally and I headed out. That’s when Sally told me what actually happened.

The guy had called the waitress over. He said he didn’t have enough cash for a tip and asked if there was an atm nearby. Then he walked down the street in cold, windy weather to the atm, got some money out, walked back to the brewery, and dropped money in my tip jar.

With all the shit that has gone on this year, and all the bills and such that he probably had to pay, he took time and money out to show how much he enjoyed hearing me playing my music.

Damned if I didn’t appreciate it! And feel grateful.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

World’s End Tour – Holy Crap Department 

I figured better a picture of this than the actual toe. You might be eating at the time.

I was staying in a hotel in Amarillo Saturday night. I was coming back from Colorado after playing an album release (Southern Plains Revisited) social distanced show at World’s End Brewing in Canon City on Friday night. There was a bench at the foot of the bed in the hotel room. The bench had a metal frame with a tuck and roll type cushion on top.

I got up to go to the bathroom and banged my shin on the bench, cursed, took care of business, and went back to bed. The next time I had to go to the bathroom, I tried to give the bench a wide berth without running into the dresser. It almost worked. But I caught my little toe on the frame of the bench. It hurt considerably more than my shin earlier. So I cursed more.

When I got through and started to move, it felt like I’d stepped on something sticky. I was curious because it was clean before. I didn’t think too much about it though and started to go back to bed. As I was getting into bed I realized my little toe was bleeding. I went back to the bathroom, turned on the light, and realized I had been standing in a pool of my own blood.

I wiped my foot with a hand towel and put a bandaid on my toe. I used toilet paper to wipe the blood off the floor. The towel was bloody enough. I noticed a spot on the carpet where I’d stepped out of the bathroom. In the morning I noticed there was a spot of blood on the sheet. I cleaned my foot good with a bath towel and put a new bandaid on it.

I didn’t say anything when I handed in my “key” as I left. They probably weren’t the ones cleaning the rooms anyway. But I do kind of wonder what scenario enters the cleaner’s mind when they see the bloody towels, the spot on the carpet, and the blood on the sheet – and probably on the frame of the bench. Oh, and my toe still freaking hurts.

Keep writing the songs that are in your heart.

Peace be with you.

paypal.me/danroark

 

 

 

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Previous events

Dan Roark Album Release/John Prine Tribute at Poor David's Pub - Live & Livestream

Poor David's Pub, 1313 South Lamar St., Dallas, Tx 75215

Dan will play songs from his new album, Southern Plains Revisited, his previous work, and songs of John Prine from 7 - 8:30 p.m. Up to 30 people may attend the show live - adhering to social distancing and wearing masks when not at your seats, and donating to the cause. If you would like to attend the show in person, contact David Card at david@poordavidspub.com to make arrangements. Tickets for the livestream are $10 and include the link and a download of Dan's Southern Plains Revisited album when it is available. A major portion of the proceeds goes to Poor David's Pub to help keep the doors open. When the pandemic has finally subsided, songwriters and performers would like to still have places to play.

Dan Roark Livestream at Herd Wear Store

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Herd Wear Store, 2000 US Highway 287, Clarendon, Tx 79226

Dan will play songs and tell stories from noon to 12:45 at Herd Wear Retail Store in Goodnight, Tx. Tickets are $.50 but contain the livestream link. Herd Wear has all things bison and more. They have many unique and special items. The bison ribs, burgers, summer sausage and brats are a little pricey, but oh, so delicious - worth the money. Cecil and Darlene will work with you on whatever you need. You can even schedule a virtual shopping experience.

Dan Roark at Starving Artist Festival

http://www.starvingartistfestival.com

StarvingArtistFestival.com 12 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. ALL DONATIONS BENEFIT FEEDING AMERICA! 12 - Introduction 12:10 - Zach Benson 1:00 - LEX (E should be reversed) 1:35 - Matthew Mozingo 2:25 - Bad Ties 3:10 - Torture and The Desert Spiders 3:45 - LEIF 4:20 - Andrew Magruder 5:10 - OneManJamz 5:45 - Sarah Zotian 6:20 - Tyler Schafer 7:10 - Dan Roark 7:45 - Max Stratyner 8:20 - Brian Sauerwald 8:55 - Ian Logan

Jan19

Song Circle Hosted by Dan Roark

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Breaking Brew Meadery, 14434 SUNROSE LN., FARMERS BRANCH, Tx

Bring your guitar and new song, song in the works, or a song you've written that you really like. You will get honest feedback. We'll play around the circle from 2 - 4 p.m. Come enjoy some good mead and good music whether you play or just listen!

Jan12

Song Circle Hosted by Dan Roark

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Breaking Brew Meadery, 14434 SUNROSE LN., FARMERS BRANCH, Tx

Bring your guitar and new song, song in the works, or a song you've written that you really like. You will get honest feedback. We'll play around the circle from 2 - 4 p.m. Come enjoy some good mead and good music whether you play or just listen!