Shaking the tree

One of my grand mothers had a saying . “You’ve got to keep shaking the tree”

She’d been told that by one of the bosses in her real estate business when she was down about not having sold a house in a while. She passed it on to me years ago when I was living in Toronto and moaning and groaning about my lack of work as as actor.

It’s a wonderfully flexible phrase. Over the years depending upon my mood it has meant “You gotta keep hustling.”   “Keep your eye on the prize” and my personal favorite when I’m feeling particularly mournful  “Get the lead out dumb ass!”.

That has been my continuum plan credo over the years. Keep shaking the tree.  In my case it’s 3  trees- I juggle voice work,acting,and various areas of music. They all take my attention – as these days none of them are a constant source of income. I do the daily scavenge and cobble together a living out of the various bits and pieces.

   A specific continuum plan for my music is somewhat in place. I put a few bucks each month into Jango and get my music played alongside,The Beatles,Tom Petty ,The Dixie Chicks and basically whoever I want to be heard with. Response has been excellent -I’ve had people become “fans” from all over the world -114 countries at last count -even had some guys serving in Iraq contact me which is very gratifying. Bit by bit small amounts of money come in.
My intention for the year is to play live as much as possible. That’s where the real good things happen. That’s what feels the best and generally tends to lead to more gigs. I’m part of the SAC songwriters circle in Vancouver. I’ve met good people there who have turned me on to various opportunities and helped me expand my horizons. I’m doing this course as a result of it and have been inspired by all of you.

I cannot possibly master all of the aspects of this course. But I do intend to continue blogging about the various pivotal musical experiences in my life. That has been terrific fun.I intend to up my You tube presence. A mini house concert  from Punto Roberto  I also intend to re-up my product to include download cards and remind all good souls how and where to get them.

 I forget who said it but it was pointed out that in musical theatre the songs are there because what needs to be said at that point cannot be said by words alone.

  So true.  I want to write songs I’m proud of that  do a lot of my talking for me. I shake the tree in my various ways to support that.

Finally I think Kat Leonard nailed it. To belly laugh. I love her for saying that. May all of my planning and shaking and playing and multinational intersocial webalizing take me there.





6 thoughts on “Shaking the tree

  1. Hi Ross,

    Thank you for such writing such an authentic and conversational blog. I feel like we’re sitting over coffee and you’re giving us a peek of who you are! I am inspired by how you have cobbled a life together of doing the things you love. Thank you for being part of our community!


  2. Ross, “Keep Shaking That Tree” is a really helpful and memorable visual – thanks for passing it along! I hope we can all belly laugh as we shake the tree. Good for you as well re: Jango… awesome! I’m looking forward to reading your next blogs!

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