Deborah Crooks

 
 

Blog

Giving thanks, moving forward

 

I will always be telling this story... and

A funny thing happened the day before Thanksgiving. I'd gone to the local natural market in the rain for the Brussels sprouts and broccoli I needed for a friendsgiving the next day and ran into a TV crew. They asked me a couple of questions about eating salad and what I was grateful for, then moved on to the next shopper, and I got back to my own business.
I don't watch much TV so nearly forgot about it until a friend texted me a clip the next morning. Soon after, another pal sent me a screen capture, and throughout the weekend several more people let me know they'd seen me talking on TV.
I had to laugh about being widely viewed discussing vegetables and gratitude rather than everything else I've been doing. Then I realized it made perfect sense.
When the news team approached me, I wasn't yet aware of the broader angle they were working— about how E.coli contaminated lettuce was sickening folks across the country — so I didn't think to tell them that (in addition to liking some green on my plate and being grateful for a roof over my head, friends and family) I had nearly died from the same poisoning at a very young age, a near-death experience that taught me early about the sustaining power of the imagination (and the good reasoning behind the CDC's precautions). Finding bright spots and appreciation for life amid it all is, literally and figuratively, the story of my life (as well as many of my songs). Knowing this has given me the fuel to keep going, despite the news, despite unexpected detours and whatever other curve balls get thrown despite the best laid plans of mice and (wo)men. Persist we must!
Speaking of telling stories, I'm spending much of this month readying a batch of songs to start recording next month! Woohoo! It's been more than two years since I released Beauty Everywhere and new songs are now reaching critical mass.** So, other than a Bread and Roses gig and an-end-of-month Bay Station show, I'm thus far mostly playing out of the public eye in December.
Thanks as always for your interest and ears!
Love and appreciation, Deborah

 
**New Recording in 2019

I'm excited to start recording ten new songs I've written over the past couple years. Interested in becoming a backer?  Drop me a line to find out how you can support my recording efforts.  In the meantime, buying, streaming and sharing my recordings on BandCamp, iTunesAmazon,  Spotify etc. is super helpful!!
  
 

Donating proceeds from "Fire Song" sales

 

Kwame and I will be donating all proceeds from the sales of our song "Fire Song" on Bandcamp to charities helping those displaced by the recent fires.

We wrote "Fire Song" a few years ago during one of our desert writing sessions. It was based on a story we read about a fire in Marfa, but it could be about what too many Californians have been going through of late:

"Now we're staying on the other side of town, you borrowed your brother's truck
I’m wearing my momma's dressing gown, we're still counting on our luck
In the sunset and the waxing moon, the call of the mourning dove
Trying to put it all behind us, and save our love"
— from "Fire Song" on Bay Station Band's Other Desert Cites (2018)
https://baystationband.bandcamp.com/track/fire-song

 

Beauty, Attention, Action!

 

Yesterday morning, after dropping my other half off at the airport, I stopped at Elsie Roemer Bird Sanctuary to enjoy the sunrise and check out the overwintering shorebirds. With its views of the San Francisco Bay, city skyline and abundant bird life, the sliver of a trail along a salt marsh is one of my favorite places in Alameda. It was a stunningly beautiful morning, filled with light and birdsong, that left me feeling energized and inspired for the rest of the day ...and thankful to the sanctuary's namesake, whose attention and activism resulted in this bit of land and habitat being preserved. I was reminded again how the actions of one single person can impact many lives, current and future. I promptly went home and filled out my vote-by-mail ballot. Now, more than ever, I encourage you to stand up for what you love and believe in and use your voice. There is no time like the present to make a difference...
And to celebrate the good in the world! I'm happy I get to further extol the beauty of where I live by singing tomorrow during part 6 of Rhythmix’ Love Our Island Art Walk Series, fittingly themed "Radical Beauty." I'll be performing a variety of DC and Bay Station songs. Come find me!
Speaking of Bay Station, Saturday, the full band is in Petaluma at Lagunitas Taproom, a great place to kick back on a fall afternoon....we'd love to play for you. xoxo, Deborah

This Friday! November 2 Love Our Island Art Walk- Radical Beauty #6, Park St, A lameda, CA 6-9pm

The art-centric, creative place-making project utilizes public art, storefront art installations, and music performances to activate Alameda’s historic downtown districts. Find me playing at 1629 Park St, Alameda.

Saturday, November 3, Bay Station Band at Lagunitas Taproom, Petaluma, CA 3-6pm

280 N. McDowell Boulevard Petaluma, Calif. 94954
A full band show in the beer sanctuary!

Thanksgiving Morning Flow, Symmetry Yoga, Alameda, CA 9:30am

1708 Park St. Suite 130A Alameda, CA 94501 
An open level yoga class with live music! Kick off Thanksgiving with energizing yoga, good vibes and relaxing tunes.

 

Meeting the Muse at the Monkey House

 

I'm pleased to return to The Monkey House in Berkeley this Thursday, Oct. 25, as part of the Meeting the Muse series. Meeting

the Muse is a monthly showcase featuring women songwriters from the Bay Area and beyond. The Monkey House is a gem of a listening room run by songwriter Ira Marlowe. I'm planning a set of vintage and recent-penned tunes from recordings past and future, and I'd love to see your smiling face in the audience. Along with myself, October Meeting the Muse artists are host Laura Zucker and Jade Way. Please join us! xo, Deborah

 

Meeting the Muse, a Celebration of Women and Song

Admission $10-$20 sliding scale
October 25th, Thursday, 7:30pm (doors 7)
Monkey House, 1638 University Avenue in Berkeley. Reserve a seat by emailing: seats@themonkeyhouse.org

 

More video from Love the Bay II! Day 2 in Richmond with Cecilia Long, Dave Bell, Sara Glaser and Pau

 

 

On persisting. And meeting the muse in Idaho and Berkeley

 

Finding and losing and re-finding my voice has been, and continues to be, a process. That's what artists sign on for. But I didn't know until I started sharing my words and stories that dismantling my own internalized sexism would necessarily go hand-in-hand with this ongoing creative evolution. So the latest dose of news starkly illustrating the many external hurdles and isms left to overcome has enraged and saddened me anew. 
Nonetheless, I will persist. I know change is possible. READ MORE

 

Bay Station Band at The Starry Plough Sunday 4-7pm

 

This weekend! We return to The Starry Plough to share an afternoon of music and good cheer with our friends The Terry Family Band. Please join us! 

 
Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018 4-7pm
The Starry Plough
3101 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA 94705
All ages, no cover

 
 

"Wishing Tree" video on DittyTV

 

See DittyTV Featured Videos of the Week from John Prine, William Elliot Whitmore, Deborah Crooks, Lazer and Levi, Jessica Childress, Carson Beyer, and more. DittyTV is a television network that celebrates Americana and Roots styles of music. You can watch DittyTV in the comfort of your own living room on Cable TV using your Tivo equipped cable box. But the music doesn’t stop there – you can enjoy DittyTV on any connected device including SmartTVs, Roku, AppleTV, FireTV, ChromeCast, Mobiles, Computers and Tablet

 

Grab Em by The Songs on Wednesday

 

 

This Wednesday September 26 at The Ivy Room!

It's been a full month of music community goodness! The trend continues this Wednesday at The Ivy Room when I join Francesca Lee and Emily Zisman onstage onstage for the latest Gram 'Em by the Songs from Kim Lembo Productions. We'd love to see you there.
xoxo,
Deborah

Host and founder Kim Lembo presents "Grab 'Em By The Songs" the fourth Wednesday's of the month at Ivy Room 860 San Pablo Ave, Albany, California 94706 featuring women sharing songs in the round. September features:

Emily Zisman is an unapologetic storyteller of the contemporary woman’s experience. She uses unabashed honesty and humor to punctuate the complexity of the entire escapade.

Deborah Crooks lyric-driven and soul-wise music draws on folk, rock and Americana, and is often compared to Lucinda Williams and The Cowboy Junkies. "a unique style incorporating the best parts of Americana..."


Francesca Lee  graduated from Sir Paul McCartney’s Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts in Liverpool, England. Soon after she moved to San Francisco and established herself in the Bay Area music scene as a versatile vocalist, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist.

 

First Annual San Rafael Porchfest

 

Another cool event I'm playing at this month! The First Annual San Rafael PorchFest on September 23. I'm playing a set 12-1pm on porch #18 as part of a very full day of live music in the Gerstle Park neighborhood of San Rafael. Check it out! A fabulous way to see a bunch of area talent at once!