Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Covid Musings, Volume II

 Well, it has been a while since writing here. I don't really have an 'excuse'. So many things are happening in the world, in my community, and in my life, but at the same time, everything is on hold (again). I have stocked up supplies for two weeks, I won't go inside places if I don't need to, I'm absolutely using sanitizer all the time, and, of course, my wearing of masks in public is an always thing. Sigh.

I am thinking a lot about two main ideas that I want to write about here. I think I have always known these things, but COVID life has certainly illuminated these needs for me in some special ways.

LOVE is very important, maybe even the KEY, to getting through this virus intact. You know I am not talking about romantic love, or even 'unconditional love' or 'best friend' love. No, the kind of love I am talking about is just general love of other living things. Practicing this kind of love makes you automatically respectful of other people, automatically polite, automatically KIND. I think that the word for this type of love may be agape, and although I am not fond of the religious connotations in the common usage of that word, that is the closest term I can find for what I am talking about. Love with charity. Love just because.  Love that is not earned, it just IS. Some people, like the woman I work with named April, shows that type of love just naturally, but I think that most of us have to work very hard to practice it.  And the practice of LOVE is SO MISSING in the mask arguments, the political arguments, the show of guns, the destruction of common norms of social behavior (like no name-calling, no hurtful lying, no stealing, etc). It would be wonderful if we all would just take a step back and remember LOVE, first. I bet figuring out what to do about our issues would fall into place a whole lot easier.

The second idea might not seem so lofty, and some think that it is 'just' entertainment, but music is a cooperative team sport, in my mind. And in a world where we have to necessarily isolate much of the time, it is difficult to make music as it should be made.... by musicians, playing to an audience, live.  At the very least, there are two on the team... the artist and the audience. Yes, I know, much, if not most, music is created and made by lone people playing into a recording device. But the MUSIC is not really whole if there is no one to hear it, enjoy it, feel it besides the maker.  And, it usually sounds better, is more interesting, and speaks more to the heart, when there are several musicians all working together on the sound of the song. Although, yes, sometimes we record separately, there is NOTHING like the feel of being in the same physical space with another musician you work with and coming up with SOUNDS that make your brain and body soar! COVID has basically made doing that a risk to your very life. And then... to make that music live in front of other people!!! And ALL of you are listening and moving to those same sounds.... THAT is something so very basic to life that I am at a loss of how to describe it any better. I just know that for many of us, music is an ultimately social thing that is also SO MISSING in the world right now.

I am sure that people reading this have other important ideas that they are learning about... maybe things like family time or the importance of taking care of your mind and body. Yep, whatever makes your world, work it. I think most will agree that we absolutely DO need each other.  But we also have to continue to be safe, for the love of each other.

Which brings to mind one of the memes I have recently seen that really puts it together....

We isolate now so that when we gather again, no one is missing.



Be safe folks!

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

SATURDAY at 4pm est
Rick and Marilyn + their guitar slinging friend Bugs, play Neil Young in benefit for Hope for Miracles!

Hi!  We hope this finds you well!  We want to invite you to a special on-line event this Saturday, at 4-6pm est. We will put the links below. Let me tell you a little bit about the history, and maybe you will come and join us, right at your computer (ok, push the stream to your TV, we should look and sound a little better up there!)

Many years ago, Dave and Jean, WAY up in the Adirondacks, bought a piece of property they named "Cripple Creek", right on the Ausable River. As they developed this little bit of heaven into a sharable space, they came up with an idea to host a yearly Neil Young oriented weekend. ARF (Adirondack Rust Fest) was born!

The parties attracted a bunch of Rusties (Neil Young Fans) from the Northeast USA and Canada, who remain good friends to this day. However, over the years, things change and morph and now Dave and Jean run a pub, 20 Main, in Jay, NY. For several years, Rick and Marilyn have played Neil Young songs at the pub on the second weekend in August... what has still been the ARF weekend all these years.

And now, Pandemic Time. This year we were going to do the Neil Young tribute as a backdrop to a benefit for Hope for Miracles, a group local to Dave, Jean and 20 Main, that raises money for childhood cancers (as a tribute to the child, Karson, who has suffered Neuroblastoma for most of his life). We worried about having too many people in a small space (Darn COVID) and Dave decided he could not do it this year. For the first time, I think, since it began, ARF in ALL forms was canceled!!!!

NO!  As you know, we have been streaming weekly from my house most of the pandemic. We offered to do that  for ARF, and Dave, Jean, and Hope for Miracles agreed!!! And... it will be live-streamed at the links below, where you will also find links to Hope for Miracles. We are SO excited to continue this event and be able to bring it now to so many different folks!!! I understand the live stream will be on view in 20 Main, as well as in my backyard and on YOUR computer.

Best of all, our friend Rusted Bugs will bring his guitar and give some of his versions of Neil Young songs. The last set of the day will be all three of us, along with our friend Peter Tenerowicz on drums!! I promise, it will




Click on links below for live stream

Rick and Marilyn, Rusted Bugs, and Peter Tenerowicz

Saturday, August 8, 2020

(Click your preference-if one doesn't work, try another!)


YouTube Live

YouTube MarilynMiller

Marilyn's Website


Monday, May 25, 2020

COVID Continues... and so does live streaming.....

I know. This is getting old. I want to sing to PEOPLE....

...not a computer screen. But it is not yet the time. We have to continue social distancing to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and even people we don't know. And that is OK. What is most important is that we are all alive to tell the stories of ISOLATION in the future!

SO- I am continuing my 'Brunch with Marilyn' series through June. Every Sunday at 1 pm, EST time, I will be on my computer doing a live show for 30-45 minutes. If you have not yet checked it out, feel free to do so. After the performance, I leave the video up for people to watch----AND I have discovered how to stream to several different platforms at the same time. That means that NOW you can watch me live in several places OR watch later where ever you feel most comfortable. This is a list of links so you can catch the show either when I broadcast (make sure you say hi so I know you are there!!!) and later on at your best convenience!!

These are the links: (Click on the name and it will take you there)

My website (YEAH! Right here!)    The LIVE window is here, on the first page, under the album player. Generally, it will be blank except when I am streaming. However, I see that it links to all the other places you can see me live.... Facebook, YouTube, and Twitch.... so if you forget the links, try this FIRST. On some of those channels, you can 'follow' me, which I THINK will allow you to get reminders according to the schedule I pick (Sunday at 1 pm, EST). PLEASE, if you watch here, let me know how it goes because I (obviously) can't check it out myself!!!

Facebook Live   It is here that most people follow me! Did you know you can also be notified whenever I have a live stream? Look for the link..... Be a part of the group there or start a trend at one of the other streams!!!  I know a lot of folks don't like Facebook and that is ok... I am looking forward to people telling me how it goes at the other sites.

Twitch- Never heard of it? Me either, but I have seen a few shows over there, and the stream is pretty good. I hope my stream is also!!! Please let me know if you try it and what your experience is. It looks like copies are not stored there either  (update... there is a place for it, but my live stream from yesterday is not visible)... it might be that the only place to see old sessions are Facebook and YouTube. The GREAT thing about Twitch is that you can sign up to be notified of streaming activity on the folks you follow there. (Twitch is not primarily a music site, it is mostly a gaming site). 

YouTubeLive  It looks like this is the place to go to watch me LIVE NOW.  It has a chat that I believe I can see from my software. AGAIN, I would LOVE to have someone check it out this Sunday and let me know!!!  Click on this link or the link on my website... I made up the title youtubelive... LOL

YouTube, My Channel  And this is where to watch a past live stream. There are two there now for you to check out.. the first that I manually uploaded when I started streaming, and the last one using the new streaming software that I have. If you are not sure you want to go through the hassle of remembering to check it out live, you can certainly go take a look right now....

OK. I think this is the story!!! See you Sunday! Spread my live streams around to your friends if you enjoy them. And mostly.... be SAFE!!!!

See you soon out there!!!!

Sunday, April 12, 2020


So. Here we all are, at home, seeing what it is like to be homebound. For some, I bet it is a relief... being social is a pressure, and no one expects you to be social now. For others, it is likely just torture... either they have never learned how to keep themselves company, or they live in a horrible situation that they now can not escape from (There always is help, though, ask me privately if you need to.)

And then, there are us artist types. We need time with ourselves to create... for me- compose music and write lyrics, maybe paint or write for another... but we ALSO need an audience, regardless of whether we are introverts or extroverts and produce a hard product or a performance. Perhaps painters and photographers and writers have this natural delay in having their work viewed, so this doesn't seem all THAT weird. But for musicians... Well.

So we try FB or YouTube or StreetJelly live. And we watch the chat and are pleased that people are listening, or at least you see their name as present. Some of them 'talk' to you or each other. You get to actually talk out loud to them, although they can only type back!!! And so you sing and play and give it what you have, and when you finish the song, it feels empty. Empty. Where are the people? Oh, yes, there they are... there is about a 30sec lag between what I am doing and what you see, and then another lag as people respond... with little hands. That is your applause.

It still feels... empty.

Like you are singing into a void.

I am about 30 minutes from doing my 3rd Facebook Live. It is Easter. I didn't realize that when I set it up, but I decided to go with it anyway. I imagine there are folks out there, needing some distraction and maybe I will be that distraction for just a little while. You hope that you bring some little joy into people's lives at this time. As a musician, that is my job.

Music is SUCH a way to connect. We musicians connect to ourselves to write, or to the songwriter when we choose to cover a song. We then connect with our fellow musicians as we practice it and 'work it up' into a piece that we hope will excite an audience as much as it excites us. Then- we connect with the audience when we perform, and the BEST performances are those where the performer connects with themselves, the other musicians and the audience, all at the same time!


That is what is missing in this new world we have here... hopefully for a little while only.

Spring is the time of new beginnings. May you be safe and have peace.

Saturday, March 21, 2020


We sure do hope that you are all feeling fine, hunkering down in place, likely afraid of every cough and sneeze from everyone around you and especially yourself. These are some hard times... and likely (sorry!) to get worse before better.

However, it will end, it will get better. There is hope.

We are sure you have noticed all the people who are trying to help folks get through this... video streams from your favorite artists, audible books for free, great take out from your favorite restaurants. Try REAL HARD, if you are able, to continue to support (especially local) folks who rely on your purchases. Be sure to get out in the air (being safe about it....) and spend time doing some of those things you wish you had time for in the past (You DO, now!!!).

Rick and Marilyn likely won't be streaming together unless we can find a way to do it from our separate homes (Marilyn is a high-risk potential carrier, related to her day job). Any ideas- point the way for us!!! As you can see, our gigs are slowly getting canceled, so we won't be seeing you very soon. ~sigh~ The Gig Calendar looked FANTASTIC there for a bit, lol.

Marilyn was working on developing a good-sounding stream, and we think she has figured it out, and maybe will do some short live Facebook streams soon. She will TRY to find times that people are available AND does not conflict with other streams people may want to watch. She hopes that Rick will consider streaming HIS music also. One thing Marilyn has on the agenda - streaming Neil Young covers for her Rustie friends. Hopefully, some of that will happen, maybe this weekend.

In the meantime, please be safe. WHO, CDC, NYDOH are all perfect places to get the real info. Try to not contaminate other people. Be safe.

Be safe.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Interview on Arts Alive!

is where you can listen to my interview with the wonderful Flo Hayle!

Rick and Marilyn Band @ Hudson Underground

YES! This Saturday Rick and I will be at Hudson Underground with our friends Mike Pagnani and Peter Tenerowicz! We are planning to ROCK IT!!! There are a bunch of things happening in the world right now, and we will sing some songs about them! INCLUDING my new song, NO WAR. Can you guess what THAT one is about? LOL. Join us. 7pm.