House show: Andy Zipf w/ T.J. Edmond, September 24th

I’ve been asked to play a house show next week in Decatur at The Manley Residence!

Brian Manley is an amazing graphic artist whose work you may have seen in much of Manchester Orchestra’s artwork, among others’. I’ll be sharing the bill (opening, I presume) with Andy Zipf, a powerful singer, performer and songwriter from D.C..

It’s my first house show, and the first Atlanta show in a long while, so I’m looking forward to trying out some new tunes!  Space is limited, so R.S.V.P. through the Facebook page. Oh, and BYOB (’cause ya can’t have mine!)

Due to the intimate house setting nature of this show, attendance is limited to the first 30 guests; so be sure to arrive on-time, if not early.

It’s a Friday night show so come hang out, enjoy great music and good people.

Published in: | on September 13th, 2010 | No Comments »

RadioLive! in Pensacola, 8/5/10

August 5th, I’ll be rounding up the band for another run down to the Gulf Coast for RadioLive! We’ll be sharing the stage with Nashville’s Laurie McClain and  locals Panhandle All-Stars. We’re honored to be asked back for our fourth time on the live broadcast, and always look forward to RadioLive even more than our customary after-show visit to McGuire’s Pub!

Get all the info at

Published in: | on July 25th, 2010 | 1 Comment »

This Week: Augusta, Columbia

We’ve been playing a lot of Wild Wing Cafe gigs recently, you may have noticed. If you’re not familiar with it, Wild Wing Cafe is a regional chain of wing restaurant/bars that feature live music at night. The chain started in my hometown, Hilton Head Island, SC, and I spent many a Tuesday night in college getting two-for-one wings at their downtown Charleston location. So it’s sort of a nostalgia trip for me, and it’s a pretty fun gig because we get to stretch out and play the whole evening, try out new material, throw  in some cover tunes, and eat the best wings in the South!

Last weekend we played at the Mt. Pleasant, SC location, near Charleston. Chris Thacker (of Big City Sunrise) played lead guitar, and his brother/our friend & producer Chris Unck came along for the ride. Unck got up and did a few of his tunes with the band as well.

(L-R): Chris Thacker, Dave Anthony, Chris Unck, Gregg Shapiro

This week we’ll be at the Wild Wing Cafe locations in Augusta, GA ,Thursday night, and Columbia, SC, on Friday night. If you’re nearby, come hang out with us!

Published in: | on January 11th, 2010 | No Comments »

Atlanta Show, Friday December 18th at Vinyl!


Hey Atlanta friends! It’s been a few months since I’ve played in town with a full band, and several of you have asked about another local show. So, December 18th I’ll be bringing the band for a show with our good friends Pasadena and Harrison Hudson! It’s a benefit show for Toys For Tots, so bring a toy and save $2 at the door! Three Favorite Gentlemen bands in one one night! Expect to hear some new tunes and have a great time! Tickets are $10 at the door or $8 with a toy.

Published in: | on December 4th, 2009 | No Comments »

Georgia Theater Reconstruction Begun?

I snapped this pic this morning while running to the bank. A crane was lifting steel beams into the roof of the Theater. Here’s hoping for a speedy return to action for the GA theater!

Published in: | on November 25th, 2009 | 1 Comment »

Work Backward

I saw TV special featuring a professional pool player, who sank every ball on the table in a row. He said the way he does it is by figuring out where the cue ball needs to be to sink the last shot, and then works backward from there, planning each shot in reverse.

It got me thinking… what if I used the same tactic? What if, instead of aimlessly struggling to find the next rung of the ladder, hoping for some “break”, I really thought about where I want to end up, and worked backwards to figure out the steps to get there from here.

Where do you want to end up? Now work backwards to where you are now.

What’s your first step?

Published in: | on November 7th, 2009 | No Comments »

Tryin’ to fit the world inside a picture frame.

I’ve got a new camera. It’s not too fancy…just a point and shoot. But it takes nice pictures and it’s small enough to carry all the time, which was my intent. I wanted a camera to add something visual to this blog, and I can also use it to record video, so expect more video podcasts!

I make no claims of being a photographer, though I have actually been employed as one, and I built and ran a darkroom when I was  the head photographer for my yearbook staff in high school. I know a little bit about how the gear works, but I don’t aspire to be a photographer.

But I will post some pictures here along with my writings. And some  of random things I see along my travels.

Here’s a shot from the other night when I offered to do the grocery shopping and let Mary relax at home. Notice the shopping list and the sense of endlessness in the aisle.


Published in: | on November 6th, 2009 | No Comments »

Getting Used To Going It Alone

I’m playing  a private event in Atlanta this evening, and as I listen to the rain outside of my window, I’m not looking forward to the  hour-and-a-half drive to the gig. To be honest, I’m not totally looking forward to gig for another reason: I’ll be playing solo.

I still get nervous before performing, and even though I’ve done lots of solo gigs in the past, I’m way more comfortable getting up on stage with the band behind me. They’re sort of a security blanket for me, and I know that even if I don’t hit all the notes right, the band’s gonna rock and the show will be good. When I play solo, I’m way more exposed. If I miss a note or flub a chord, there’s nothing to hide behind. And I’m not an exceptional singer or guitarist, so the songs themselves better be good enough to make up for any lack of virtuosity on my part.

But that’s the essence of what I’ve been going for all along, isn’t it? To write great songs. So part of the challenge is to be receptive to the songs and write them when they come. It’s another challenge, when performing, to get out of the way and let the songs speak on their own. And playing solo acoustic shows is the best way to practice that.

I just added a solo show in Atlanta on November 11th for Two Wheel Driver, a great local cancer benefit combining motorcycles, golf and music. I’ll be joining Michael Tolcher, Sam Thacker, Heather Lutrell, Elizabeth Elkins and Chuck Carrier. It’s $10 and the proceeds go to help pay medical costs for Ashley Klem, who was diagnosed with breast cancer. Go to for more info.

TWd- 2009 Show

Picture 14

Ashley Elizabeth Klem is 28 years old and was diagnosed with breast cancer on June 19th of this year.   She has a mass in Stage 1 with the possibility that it has spread to her lymph nodes.  Given her age and other circumstances, her cancer specialist has recommended a bilateral mastectomy followed by chemotherapy
and Herceptin treatments.  Because of obvious troubles in the economy, Ashley unfortunately has no health insurance.

Ashley was born January 27, 1981 in Conyers, GA and grew up on a 285 acre farm that has been in her mother’s family for over one hundred years.  She comes from a very artistic family with her mother being a landscape designer and her father working as a mechanical engineer.  She has one older sister who is married with three children.  Ashley attended high school in Rockdale County at Heritage High, where she played both soccer and volleyball until graduation in 1999.  She then attended Georgia State University, gaining her BA degree in Studio Art in 2005.  While at Georgia State University, Ashley was a member of the Delta Zeta sorority
and studied abroad in France for one summer.

After working for over three years as a design consultant in the new home construction business, Ashley’s company had to close its Atlanta office due to the ongoing recession… and along with it, lost her health insurance.  She is presently working at Fado Irish Pub & Restaurant and has been blessed to meet many  amazing fellow employees and patrons of the pub.

With golf and music events being planned for late October, TWO WHEEL dRIVER will be working through the fall of 2009 to raise money for Ashley while she focuses on what matters most.

Published in: | on October 27th, 2009 | No Comments »

Lend Me Your Ears (’cause mine are fried!)

I’m back at my Sunday morning sound gig this morning after being on the road last week. I’m tired and my ears are not working very well. Not a good thing for a sound engineer. Sort of like if you showed up drunk for your job. Not quite, but sort of.

The last two days have been filled with loud guitars, which has taken it’s toll on my hearing, it seems. Friday night I mixed a metal show. Yesterday I modified one of my guitar pedals and cranked up the amp for a while, and then last night the band and I played at Downtown Kitchen in Canton, which one of my favorite places to play. Imagine a classy restaurant and bar with an amazing chef, gorgeous original artwork on the walls… and us playing in the corner. We usually start out quiet and bring up the volume as the night goes on and the patrons start dancing. There were several birthday parties last night and the place was jumping all night and we had a great time! Mike LaMond played bass, since Gregg was booked at another gig, and he did a great job.

I first met Mike at the music store about six years ago when I first moved to Atlanta. For the last few years he’s been playing with Bain Mattox. He’s a very solid bass player, and sings gorgeous high harmonies, and I’ve wanted the chance to play with him for a while.Dave and Bret rounded out the lineup, and those guys always deliver and are fun to hang with.

I just got the Blackberry WordPress app working on my phone, so this rambling is a means to test out the software. :)

Published in: | on October 25th, 2009 | No Comments »

Don’t Hate.

A couple weeks ago, I talked about not worrying about how you measure up against other musicians, because it’s easy to get discouraged. There’s another side of that that can be equally as damaging, which is criticizing others in order to build yourself up. This is certainly not limited to musicians, but we tend to fall into it pretty easily.

There’s a zillion bands, musicians, songwriters, artists and producers out there trying to “make it”. When someone else is getting the attention… a bigger crowd at their shows, favor in the press, a sweet opening slot at a big concert, or even a record deal… it’s easy to think,“Why not me?! I deserve it more than him! It’s easy to start viewing your peers as competition and criticize them. “They’re not that good!” Arrogance and entitlement show their ugly heads, and bitterness sets in.

I’ve been as guilty of this as anyone. But I’ve learned that it’s counterproductive and damaging all around. It destroys any camaraderie you could have with other artists, and it tends to keep you focused on what other people are doing instead of focusing on what you should be doing, which is making music. I think it comes from insecurity, which I think every artist person has to some degree. We all want to be liked and affirmed, and as artists, we tend to hang our self-worth and credibility on it.

But, if you’re an artist, what does it really matter? Do you believe in what you’re doing? Regardless of whether it’s trendy or popular or commercially viable or has “indie-cred”, can you look at your body of work and take pride in it? Are you creating music that you like, honestly? If so, then forget what anyone else thinks and focus on your own improvement. Keep doing your thing. If it’s real, and honest, there will be people who recognize it and will appreciate it. Encourage and cheer on your peers in their improvement as well, without trying to compete.

Don’t hate. Create.

Published in: | on October 23rd, 2009 | No Comments »