Wednesday, April 30, 2008

May 6, Benefit

Tues. May 6
U Utah Phillips Benefit and Celebration
Laurie Lewis & Tom Rozum
Kate Brislin & Jody Stecher
Larry Hanks
Ray Bierl
Faith Petric
Eric & Suzy Thompson
Freight & Salvage
1111 Addison (near San Pablo)
Berkeley CA
Freight website:

If anyone has more info on the show please send it to my e-mail or post it on the blog

Monday, April 28, 2008

May 3, Benefit

Sing Out for Utah!

Benefit Concert for Folk Legend Utah Phillips

May 3, 2008, 7:30 pm (Doors open at 6:45)

Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship, 1708 "I" Street

Seating limited to the first 200! Please order advance ticket.

Bruce "U. Utah" Phillips, legendary folksinger and storyteller won't be able to travel to Bellingham again. The concert in Bellingham's is the second such event Washington State.

A stage filled with professional musicians & entertainers will take part in this benefit. Please join us these friends of Utah's come to the aid of one of their own. Celebrate with us the life of Utah Phillips. Raise your voice with us. Attend and help raise funds for Utah's medical bills. Utah has always given so much. It's time to give something back. Join us. Come, celebrate, sing.

Performers in alphabetical order: Linda Allen, Artis the Spoonman, Marie Eaton & Janet Peterson, Joules Graves, Mike Marker, Tim McHugh, Geof Morgan, Mark Ross, Anna Schaad, Kevin Murphy (Emcee)

Advance Tickets $12 ($10 for seniors) / At the door $15 ($12 for seniors)

Ticket Outlets (all in Bellingham, WA)

Boundary Bay Brewery and Bistro 360-647-5593, FAX 671-5897or

Community Food Co-Op (360) 734-8158

Everyday Music (360) 676-1404

Stuart’s at the Market 360-714--800

Village Books (360) 661-2626, FAX 734-2573 or

For info, email Steve ( or phone him at 360-671-2111.

To donate directly to our concert-affiliated bank account, please deposit directly in ANY Washington state "Whidbey Island Bank" to this account: "Steve Tornblom - Utah Phillips Benefit." If you wish to be credited in the evening's program, please Steve or send check to Steve Tornblom -- Utah Phillips Benefit, 1001 22nd St. #3 Bellinghan, WA. 98225. (Please write checks to "Steve Tornblom - Utah Phillips Benefit" for easier handling.

We ask that if you can't make this benefit in Bellingham or contribute to Utah's bank account here, please attend a Utah Phillips benefit in your area.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Chicago Benefit


We are having a benefit for Utah Phillips on Saturday June 14th at the
Heartland Café 9:00 – 1:00 pm.

A fellow named Sparrow who is one of my My Space friends said it best,
"Utah was there for us, let's be there for him now".

For the last several decades Utah has traveled the country with a
guitar, a story and a desire to leave our lives a little bit better
for knowing him, I don't know who sang it Steve Goodman or Jim Post or
Fred Holstein, but I got hooked on "Larimer Street". I found that Utah
had written the song, It took me a little while to find a vinyl copy
of "El Capitan" . For a while I played it every day before I went to
work and every night when I got home. It took a while before I finally
saw the man in person the first time at Holsteins. We talked after the
show and as those of you who are lucky enough to have spoke a word or
two with him know, he is always more interested in what you had to say
rather than feed a performer's ego. He has an inspiring curiosity
about darn near everything. He became the closest thing to a mentor
that I've ever had. I've been learning from him for thirty years.
Now a bum ticker has left him home bound. I hear tell that he is
writing his memoirs but that isn't paying the bills yet. He can't show
up on our doorstep so we can't pay to be entertained for an evening.
We can still buy the CD,s and Utah wishes you would. It is tough
transforming yourself at this stage of the game. As with any other
friend, it is time for us to step up and help him make it through.

I'm not an impresario of any sort. I just see a need and when no one
steps up, I do. I've bugged most performers that I know and a lot of
people who know other people to put together a show. HEARTLAND CAFÉ
and MICHAEL JAMES were there from the start.
They turned over a Saturday night to us. I can inflict my MIKE FELTEN
caterwauling on you for a bit, but I wanted this to be a collective
effort in the spirit of what Utah preaches. We are working on a lot of
promises and maybes and hope they all bear fruit.
So far we have KATHY GREENHOLDT and the EDSELS and we have some
incarnation of M.O.T.O. confirmed. Brandy over at TONY MARGHERITA
MANAGEMENT got JEFF TWEEDY boys from WILCO to donate several
autographed photos and posters to raffle off. Talked to some of the
folks at the I.W.W. and they are behind it. MIKE MATIKA (pardon my
phonetic spelling) from the Laborers Union is behind this effort too.
It always amazes me when people step up like this.
There are a lot of great things and people unconfirmed. It's not my
intent to put anyone on the spot here. I've asked before for other
causes and frankly, I'm tired of doing benefits for musicians too. We
just have to do these things when there is no other way.

Anyway you can help would be appreciated. Anything that you can do for Utah
he'd appreciate. It is time to STAND UP CHICAGO . Mike Felten

Monday, April 21, 2008

Roesendale Update

I received an e-mail from Sarah Underhill it sounds like the Rosendale benefit was a huge success, Utah phoned in just as Pete Seegar was taking the stage. I tried to get a hold of dad to give him the news and get a medical update to post be he wasn't home.
So instead I will tell you a quick story about a budding magician.

Last Sunday morning I was driving to moms house for our weekly trip to the grocery store. My normal rout takes me down, for anyone familiar with Salt Lake, Thirteenth East towards the North end of the valley. Where Thirteenth intersects 39 th I missed the signal light as I normally do. Luckily for me and everyone that had the good fortune to miss the signal light that morning the duplex on the corner has a back yard that faces the street. On this day in that back yard was a young man, ten or so, dressed in a over sized black cape, matching top hat, red bow tie and long white gloves holding a long thin silver wand with which he was doing magic tricks for the temporarily parked cars. Idly I sat as the young magician pulled off the multiplying ball trick. First he presented one bright red ball to his car bound audience then deftly he stuffed his had under his arm pit waved his wand and sharply pulled his hand out. To my amazement he now held in his hand two red balls were before there had only been one.
I applauded, the young magician did what all great magicians do, bowed to his audience and prepared for the next show that was only a red light away. Every time I stop at that light I hope for a show but have yet to see magician. I'm sure he has since moved on to New York, L.A. or maybe Paris

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Benefit Tonight

The benefit tonight in Rosendale, New York has been moved to the rec. center on Route 32.

Featuring: Pete Seager, Dar Williams, Redwood Moose, Sarah Underhill with the High Meadow Larks, the Flames of Discontent, and Norm Wennet. Join this community of musicians for an inspiring afternoon of support for Utah Phillips. The Folk world's beloved songwriter, historian, humorist, raconteur and agitator will be celebrated with story and song.
At the Rosendale Cafe:
434 Main St.
Rosendale, NY 12472
845 - 658 - 9048

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Canadian Donations

A note from Bruce Brackney.
In January I opened a trust account in Utah's
at our credit union and have used it to
convert benefit proceeds and Canadian checks
into U.S. funds and sent the $ down.
Feel free to post my particulars on the blog
for Canadians who wish to send Cndn checks
made out to me, and I'll continue to convert
the funds into U.S.
Bruce Brackney
1201 Colville Road
Victoria B.C. V9A 4R2

Also, you might want to mention that I do
keep an accounting of who sent how much and send it
along with the money orders. I think this would help
with folks being aware that Utah will know who the donors
are rather than their donations being namelessly converted
into a larger lump sum.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


A quick note to all.
To everyone that has planned and produced benefits, to the folks that have mailed dad a check and to the friends, fans and family that have taken the time to e-mail me pictures and stories I am forever gratefull. As a child I was always able to reconcile the time dad spent on the road and out of my life by believing he was changing the world, one town at a time, one song at a time and one person at a time. Receiving the multitudes of comments and support has reaffirmed what I have always known.
Thank You

Monday, April 14, 2008

United States and beyond

For those of you out side the confines of the U.S. I will try to set up a way to send Utah donations. Thanks for the question, it was one of those things that I totally over looked.
If anybody out there has any suggestions, fire away.

Sunday, April 13, 2008


I spoke with dad earlier in the day, he had just returned home from church were he had given a short talk. His health is o.k. he sounds a little tired but good. I can only imagine after so many years on the road that being home and not planning for the next gig might be as hard or harder to get used to than dealing with his medical condition. I know he always looked forward to being able to come off the road but I'm sure he thought it would be on his terms. I guess in a way it was , his heart and body did what his mind couldn't make itself do.

He has a hernia that he will have to have removed in the near future. It shouldn't be any big deal but anytime Utah has to go under the knife even for the simplest of procedures, it can turn serious in a hurry. He also has a bit of gout but the new medication he takes works well and has eased his discomfort a great deal.

Utah had his first unchaperoned trip out and about in town yesterday. He said it feel very liberating to be on his own and free to do what ever he wanted, it must have felt similar to when he left Utah in the late 60's.
There are a number of benefits in the works I am waiting for a complete list to update the blog. Dad did want me to ask if anyone has any info on the benefit Harry Tuft is putting together in Denver.

Monday, April 7, 2008


Thanks to everyone for the response. I got some e-mails from the folks up in Maine. It sounds like the show was a great success. Many thanks to Jay and everyone for putting together the show, if anyone has any pics from the show please e-mail me some for the blog.

I am both pleased and reassured by the comments in regards to the the blog, the kind words folks have posted are what I was hoping for.

I don't remember if I mentioned that there is a new pod cast on my dads website check it out.

My little brother Brendan headed home last week after staying with dad for the last few weeks. Besides his band Fast Rattler he works for the Washington State governor in Seattle and I think he needed to get back to work.
My sister Morrigan will travel to Nevada City from her home in D.C to spend a couple of weeks with dad. I know dad was hoping to get us all together at the same time but with our family spread out like a shot gun blast it's hard to get everyone together at the same time, on the flip side we can spread out our trips so dad has one of us there to help out.
The folks in Nevada City have been great, the support group has been delivering two meals a week to the house and are always there to help with whatever dad and Joanna may need.
I will try to get a hold of dad tonight and give you an update tomorrow.

Sunday, April 6, 2008


For anyone still reading the blog and lives anywhere near Blue Hill Maine there is a benefit show tonight at the Blue Hill Congregational Church for Utah.

I spoke with dad a couple of days ago and he was on his way to the library. He has set aside some time every week to work on a long over due book detailing his great walk about. After forty plus years and two million miles on the road it should be a very interesting and enlightening read.

Dad has been home now for a little over a month and he continues to do better than any of us expected. Last week he went to the Cesar Chavez memorial , spoke a few words and had a wonder full day. Like all of us he has his good days and bad days but now his good days are out numbering the bad ones. He continues to try and gain back some of the weight he lost last month and is hopefull he may be able to restart is cardiac rehab classes in the near future. He really enjoys the cardiac classes, besides the work out for his heart he loves the socialization with the other members of the class, over the years they have all become good friends and as good friends do, look out for each other.

I know I haven't updated the blog as regularly as I should but I do check it every day for other posts. To be honest aside from the ocatinoall e-mail I'm not sure if anybody reads it any more. The good thing about checking the e-mail is that everyday I find out that I've won several lotteries cured my impotence found an old girl friend and can now at long last retire, isn't spam mail great...?
I am continuing to work on my new web site that will host Utah Phillips Museum of sorts. I will let you know when it is up and running.
Thanks again for the e- mails and posts it always was and will continue to be nice to hear from all of you.