Newsical Notes

By Jean Metcalfe

We recently received a note from one of our members, Mark S. Spence, who says he is "currently seeking collaboration (lyrics or music) with past/present Co-op members or any songwriter in general. Writes mainly pop/rock stuff (Loverboy, Prince, INXS, Teena Marie, Billy Idol-type songs). Contact at (502) 776-2266; 2517 Osage Ave., Louisville, KY 40210."

It was great to see Rusty Bladen at the April 17 membership meeting. Rusty lives quite a way up the pike in Indiana and we seldom get to see him. He's in the process of recording a new album, but was nice enough to give us a copy of his present cassette project, Are You Happy Now?

Yes.

It was also nice to welcome back recent absentees Joann Hatcher and Roz Reynolds.

Roz and her husband, Vince, have a difficult time arranging their work schedules to include LASC meetings. They continue to work toward an appearance on one of our upcoming Songwriter Showcases, and we hope it comes together soon.

Happily, Vince managed to get away from his work long enough to attend the April 20 Songwriter Showcase at The Rud.

Joann has had some health problems in recent months, and it was good to see her looking well and to learn that she's planning to make her annual spring trek to Nashville with her daughters. Joann brought along to the meeting a special song she had written about, and for, her best friend, husband Wayne Hatcher. The touching song left no doubt why their marriage has stood the test of some 35 years.

Fans of Rita Beach will be happy to learn that she recently released her ten-song cassette album An Original. As you might already have guessed, all the cuts were written by Rita herownself. Those of you who were at the Songwriter Showcase at The Rud on Jan. 19 know that she is an excellent entertainer. When she combines her fine originals with her great smile and stage presence and the sax-blowing of her buddy Gene Cahill (what a trouper), it's a bodacious performance.

Rita was one of sixty songwriters selected from across the U.S. and beyond to attend the Nashville Songwriters Association International's songwriting retreat March 12-14. She was the lone participant from Kentucky, except for faculty member James Dean Hicks, who is perhaps best known in songwriting circles as the guy who wrote "Jesus and Mama." Hicks is a native of Bardstown, Ky. (where my parents were born . . . to borrow from John Prine.)