Gathered TIPS for end-users:

An assortment of accumulated feedback follows:

First, the thumb pick:

***Remember, wetting your thumb and “pushing” the sleeve into place, works best.  The water will dry, and the fit will be perfect.

***Exchange the flat pick with YOUR favorite flat pick, to get the action you prefer out of your thumb pick

***You can adjust the angle about 10 degrees either way, without having to cut into the ‘pick pocket’

***Left-handed player!?  The pick pocket can be customized to allow the flat pick to be reversed! Yay!

Finger Pick tips:

***Make sure you take the time to shape, file, and buff the nails to fit your personal style.

***Wetting your fingers, or powder, will help the picks slip into place with ease…

***Some end-users have eliminated the curvature of the nail, by filing the underside of the nail, to create a flat pick.  Others leave a smaller point instead of a whole nail, while still others shift the entire cot to one side or the other, to change the angle of attack.

***Guitar pickers, Banjo players and Autoharp players have been experimenting with these picks “upside down.”  When you customize the nail, you can heat it and bend it so that it follows the contour of your finger tip, just like the metal ones do…

***Some folks take these to the nail salon and let the professionals shape them to their specifications, shortening the length, eliminating curvature, and buffing to a high-gloss smooth finish that glides nicely over the strings.  Further modification might include the addition of the acrylic gel, or porcelain powder coating, while you’re at the nail salon, to help create the tonal quality you may be used to…

***Powders or string lubricants like Finger Ease work well to eliminate friction between the cots during finger-picking. [depending on your playing style, this is probably a ‘non-issue’]

***Give these picks a good test.  We believe you can customize & adapt them so that they enhance your playing technique.  Learning curve is different for everyone.

My Best,

~Gus

Tony Ramey/Brad Davis

Brushed-Metal-[Converted] TRBrandingPoster Crossroads Music Company Presents_smaller Tony_Ramey_KETR_2 Crossroads Tony Ramey and daughter 2014 DEC_9039 Crossroads Trio Ramey Davis 2014  DEC_9004 Crossroads Brad Davis and Gus 2014 DEC_9080 Crossroads Gus and Tony Ramey 2014 DEC_9087 Crossroads Ramey fam 2014 DEC_9102 Crossroads Tony and daughter 2014 DEC_9056 Crossroads Tony Ramey and Brad Davis 2014 DEC_8839Fantastic Performance from Tony Ramey & Brad Davis!  What a treat for Sulphur Springs!  Tony’s wife, Debbie Money, and daughter Savannah also took the stage for a few songs!

Merry Christmas to ALL!!

Thanks for all the support for Crossroads over the years…2015 will mark 10 years, and we’ll plan something special in the Fall!  A special shout out to Grocery Supply Company, for their generous support.  It has made all the difference, as Crossroads Music settles into its new Sulphur Springs home! ~Gus

GSC logo blue

 

The Ultimate Finger Pick!!

Except for the few Kickstarter backers that have not gotten back with their mailing addresses, we’ve sent out the first generation finger picks to all our supporters!!  Starting with the “one size fits most” mentality, we created a “medium” cot over-mold for the nail, with the ability to add expansion slits to accommodate bigger fingers.

medium prototype

TUF expansion slitIf you’d like to try these first generation units, you can still donate to the cause and get a 3-pack mailed to your doorstep…Click HERE!

 

Crossroads 8th Anniversary Concert was Magical!!

Eight years of global entertainment in the small town of Winnsboro, Texas, boasting a population of less than 5,000 people.  CRAZY!  The original founders of Crossroads were our entertainers, and a few more joined in the fun!  This was the final Crossroads show of the year, and there are no other performances scheduled until the Winnsboro Center for the Arts works out their renovations during the Winter months, as well as what weekends THEY will be needing the stage.  I’ll post another blog addressing what lies ahead for 2014, once we know more.  For now, enjoy the pictures in the Facebook album, and don’t forget to click on the Crossroads YouTube icon on the homepage to catch of few of the songs that were performed on Saturday night!  Two songs from Saturday night!!

Below: Everyone was there!  Lynn Adler & Lindy Hearne [original founders]; Denice Barton, who climbed on board, joining owner Stephen Marshall, who took the reins from Adler & Hearne to keep things rolling along while Adler & Hearne took their show on the road!…Then came Gus Gustafson in 2010, which is when “& Listening Room” was added to the Crossroads Music Company name 🙂  Global talent, sharing their original music & connecting with their audience in a fantastic intimate listening room setting!  That is how the MAGIC happens!!

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THANK YOU to all who have shown such wonderful support over the last 8 years.  Allow us to keep you in the loop for what waits around the next corner.  Good things on the horizon!  ~~Gus Gustafson

Heather McCready, with Milo Deering!

“Refreshing” is a descriptive term that comes to mind as I attempt to describe a night filled with the vocal expressiveness of Heather McCready.  I believe this term has been used before, but it truly is fitting.  The full house was entertained from start to finish, with everything from Amazing Grace–blues style–by Love & Grace [opening act], to Milo Deering doing Johnny Cash’s Folsom Prison Blues while waiting for the train to pass!  Very well-crafted songs filled the night, and we even included a speaker on Market Street, spreadin’ the love in between the buildings downtown!  Heather was simply wonderful, performing her sweet originals like the whimsical “Give It A Day” by her & Milo, great covers like “Smile,” and injecting her personal story that revolves around her Bi-Polar disorder–a very complex brain disease, but one that can be managed by today’s mental health professionals.  Heather McCready is living proof!

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Pictured [l to r]: Gus Gustafson, Lindsey Gail, Heather McCready, & Milo Deering.  Photo compliments of Watson Photography.

Lindsey Gail shared her powerful vocals with the crowd, and it was great having her back on stage–this time, sharing the Word through new original Gospel tunes, and covering other popular tunes.  Love & Grace warmed up the audience for Heather & Milo.  There was “magic” in the air that night, from start to finish!  I hope you were one of the fortunate ones to be inside the Winnsboro Center for the Arts last Saturday night, but if not, click on some of the links above to get a taste of what you missed.  ~Gus

Jimmy LaFave, back HOME in East Texas!

 

Jimmy up close by LH

 

[photo by: Lindy Hearne]

Jimmy LaFave’s hometown of Wills Point, Texas, is actually less than sixty miles from the Crossroads Stage here in Winnsboro, Texas.  That is certainly close enough to say that Jimmy was “Home” on Friday night, playing to “His people.” [pictures] These are terms Jimmy himself used to describe some of the feelings dancing around inside this great singer/songwriter/musician/entertainer, as he shared some thoughts & some stories of the past with his band and those lucky enough to be in the audience that evening!  There was a great vibe & energy bouncing around the Crossroads Performance Hall that night! Jimmy & his band tapped into that source, and truly delivered an inspired performance! The only set list present was between Jimmy’s ears, and I believe he allowed that to change throughout the night, playing tunes inspired by the tune/story before, and trying to satisfy the requests coming from the appreciative crowd.  At times it felt like Woody Guthrie’s spirit was up on that stage with Jimmy & the band.  There will never be another performance quite like the one delivered last Friday night!  That’s an easy statement to make, since Jimmy is one of those musicians that prefers NOT to play a song the same way twice, which allows for creative MAGIC to show up during his shows–magic you can’t get listening to a CD!  In honor of where they were performing, they even did a rendition of Robert Johnson’s “Cross Road Blues,” totally unrehearsed!  It was AWESOME, and guitarist Phil Hurley totally SHREDDED IT!!

Crossroads Music Company was honored to have Jimmy back for a return visit! ~Gus Gustafson

“Never a Moment” performed by Jimmy LaFave a couple nights ago!

Jimmy LaFave Band at Crossroads

 

Druha Trava reunited with Winnsboro!

Crossroads Music Company & Listening Room, Winnsboro, Texas?  A popular stop for INTERNATIONAL performers?  Could this be a true statement?  Not only are we a tour stopping spot, we rank as one of many musician’s FAVORITE TOUR STOPS!

Such is the case with Druha Trava, one of the top Bluegrass/Americana groups from the Czech Republic. [click to go to their website] They try to tour the U.S.of A. once a year, and it was John DeFoore – awesome guitar teacher and songwriting coach from Mineola – who first recognized this band’s talent, some 19 years ago, and brought them to his Pickin’ Parlor way back then!  Since that time, their English has improved – lol – but Robert Krest’an still sings much of the material in their native tongue.  What you get when you spend an evening with Druha Trava, is top-notch performances of Robert’s originals, and covers from the likes of Bob Dylan & the Rolling Stones, all with their signature Czech influences–simply fantastic. Truly talented musicians, they blend guitar, bass, banjo, mandolin, dobro, & even a couple wind instruments, with precise/artistic flair!  They bring their sense of humor along for the tour, as well!

Click here to Czech out [cute, right?] our video of a Bob Dylan cover from Saturday night’s performance!  Click here for some photos on the Crossroads FB page.

Druha Trava 2013

Druha Trava 2013

 

 

Brad Davis loved the venue!

Grammy Award Winning Brad Davis was in the house on October 5th, and it was great…hope you were one of the lucky ones that came out in support of this awesome guitar player/singer/songwriter/Studio Musician of the Year; Texas Music Awards-2013!!

Brad was very comfortable in the listening room surroundings at Crossroads Music, inside the Winnsboro Center for the Arts!  We were fortunate to have him all day and night on that Saturday, starting off with a guitar clinic and ending with a great performance.  Brad’s son Landon made his presence known on the bass guitar, and did a wonderful job backing his dad’s new Spiritual originals, one of which Brad unveiled for the first time ever in public–“Sometimes Your World Will Break.”  Great tune!

Brad Davis promo 2013Brad Davis also has his friend Debbie Porter on stage for a couple numbers.  She was packin’ everything from mountain dulcimers to ukuleles, including a bass version!  Another East Texas rising star, Cole Risner, was Brad’s opening act, and it was the perfect fit.  Visit his website and get your hands on all his songs!  Cole has been writing some great new tunes…keep your eye on this young man!!

 

Kinky gave Winnsboro both barrels!

What can I say?  EVERYTHING just FIT together Saturday night with Kinky Friedman, logically speaking.  Singer/Songwriter music, comedy, politics, important issues brought to light–we had it ALL!

Winnsboro got a full spectrum of entertainment;  light-hearted humor, serious issues, stories from the past, comical lyrics mixed with fun melodies–it was all part of the show.  We even had Winnsboro’s new Mayor, Tom Howard, do the Kinky introduction, to properly set the stage.  Kinky plans to run for the Commissioner of Agriculture position, for the Texas Department of Agriculture, a position currently filled by Todd Staples.  We got a glimpse of his platform Saturday night, and Kinky will be a serious contender!

Kinky, performing “Rapid City South Dakota”

KF onstage

 

 

Kinky Says

 

Winnsboro’s own Kate Hearne did the honors as the opening act, assisted on percussion by Ashlyn Shanafelt.  Kate’s career is just starting to gain momentum.  Fresh out of college, she’s working on her first CD, residing in Fort Worth, and carving a place in the world of the singer/songwriter/musician–Kate is the complete package, and she certainly showed the full house at Crossroads that she’s been making great use of her time!

Kate & Ashlyn

Kate and Ashlyn