• Kelly Render Wilkinson had a great week last month. In the course of a single week, she appeared on stage at the Kentucky Center for the Arts twice. The first time was with the rain chorus, who opened for Bob Dylan. Then she was in the Blue Angels Choir, an ad hoc group assembled to back up Steve Ferguson and the Midwest Creole Ensemble during the St. Francis High School Great Sounds concert.
• Do You Know a Good Carpenter? Dept.
Steven Curtis Chapman really cleaned up at the Dove Awards on April 1. The Sparrow recording artist picked up a record six Doves, including Artist of the Year; Song of the Year, for "The Great Adventure," Contemporary Album of the Year, The Great Adventure; Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year,"The Great Adventure;" Songwriter of the Year and Short Form Video of the Year.
Chapman also won his second Grammy Award this year.
• Louisville's Christian metal band Bride also added to their trophy case. The group picked up a Dove for Metal Recorded Song, for "Rattlesnake." The tune was written by all four members of the band. They also all got SESAC plaques for the No. 1 singles "Would You Die for Me?" and "Rattlesnake."
Annnnnd Bride's Troy and Dale Thompson also were named SESAC Songwriters of the Year.
• Several members of the MERF crew paid a visit to Oldham County's New Castle Elementary back in February. It was a part of the school's studies of '50s and '6()s (the decades, not the ages of the MERF crew). MERF Board member Beverly Howell organized a question-and-answer phone call to John Sebastian, singer/songwriter and leader of the Lovin' Spoonful. Everybody had a grand time, including the musicians. Beverly taped the call to Sebastian, of course. No doubt they'll do it all again.
• Wedding Bell Blues. Well, no blues, just bells. Several local musical notables got hitched recently, or at least the news just arrived recently. Writer Bonnie McCafferty married the Metro Blues All-Stars' Nick Stump. Love Jones frontman Ben Daughtrey married longtime girlfriend Sally Day, according to C-J writer Jeffrey Puckett.
Around here, though, the connection of note is the April 8 wedding in San Francisco of LMN writer Bob Bahr and his longtime significant other, Susan Kiely.
• Music Fest, Music Festival, Music Fe ver.
Da spring is upon us and the outdoor beckons. John Grantz called late to say the Louisville Jaycees are staging a Music Fest at the Silo Brew Pub on May 14 and 15. Acts include Joy White, Delbert McClinton, J. D. Black, da Mudcats, Curtis and the Kicks and Ron Payne and Yellowstone.
Down in Mt. Washington, you can gather for a "Legends of Country" show featuring the John Allen Band, plus all the usual crafts, food, car show, rides and like that. That's the Mt. Washington Spring Festival. I assume it's downtown, but then I don't know for sure. I'll try to find it, 'cause the John Allen boys do a tune I wrote with my editor, Jean Metcalfe and the Music Man Records mogul, Charlie Walls.
My apologies for the gratuitous plug. I couldn't help myself.
• Fans of John Gage will find him at his usual haunt at the Thomas Jefferson Unitarian Church, entertaining at the Old Brownsboro Road Arts and Crafts Festival on May 7-9. John won't really sing all the time, just some of it.
Speaking of John, I'm thinking of compiling a list of all the music biz types in town who have had John officiate at their wedding. Whaddya think? Call me if you were married by John.
There are lots more festivals, of course, far too many to list. Find your favorite and go hear some live music outside. Or inside.
The Butchertown Pub is holding a Music Fest inside on May 21 and 22 because they can. Lots of music, too many to list. Check the calendar.
• Sam Anderson, whose new band lovesauce & soulbones will be playing on a Rough Diamond show at the Phoenix Hill on June 2, has arranged for several record company-type executives, including folks from Warner Chappcll, to come hear the new group.