Here is the back story on my Africa trip in 2001 that birthed AfroGrass and the inspiration for my current Electro Americana live show using the Art of Live -Looping. Only 2 minutes!!!
It’s been a dream of mine to play in Holland and not everyone knows my full name is Arthur Leland Sikking III and that I am 1/3 Dutch on my dad’s side. I’ve heard that “Sikking” is a common name in Northern Holland so I find it quite exciting to be featured on the following Dutch radio shows in the last week: Acoustic Rain, Crossroads, Delta Rhythm, EasterGirl, Harky In English, Landslide, Muziek En Toch, Paul van Gelder, PeelGrass and RadioGirl!!!! I want to give a big THANK YOU to all the Dutch DJ’s from Arthur Lee Land!!!!!
Peter Holmstedt from Hemifran is doing a great job promoting the new Cracked Open CD: http://www.hemifran.com/artists_a-b.html#leeland
Thank you PETER!!!!
I can’t tell you how cool it would be to go to Holland and play and see where I come from. The ancestrial influence on our lives is massive and my mom’s side is full Greek so I’ve always been a “half-breed.” My grandmother’s maiden name is “Paxton” so I know I’ve got some Irish going on too. That was confirmed when I did a sideman gig with legendary folk singer Tom Paxton years ago who told me “If you’re a Paxton, then we’re related! We all come from same original Irish immigrants off the boat!” Our personal history is a powerful influence and the more I learn the more fascinating it becomes!!!
Really looking forward to playing with my good friend Ellis this Friday March 29th at the Cedar Cultural Center in Minnapolis MN. Check her out http://www.ellis-music.com I had tons of fun playing with her the last 4 nights on her CO tour. She is one of my favorite new folk artists!!!
Many of you know we moved back to Colorado this fall and we are so happy to be here in Lyons in our new pad. I’m excited to share with everyone some of the projects we’ve been working on very soon. One unexpected big project has been health related as I was diagnosed with an auto-immune condition ealier this fall called Graves Disease (Hyperthyroidism). One of the symptoms is bulging eyeballs which has been evident is my most recent looping video as well as the video above. I have been going about an alternative holistic apporach to healing and things are slowly getting better.
I found some great information at http:///www.gravesdiseasecure.com which has helped to educate me on this condition and come up with a holistic plan. Currently there is “no cure” for Graves and many other auto-immune diseases in our AMA influenced health care system. There have been many people who have cured themselves in a holistic manner but it seems to require a deep examination of possible causes that deal with stress, mental beliefs and emotional patterns as well lifestyle issues (diet, exercise etc). I am grateful for the gift in what this disease is teaching me. In that attitude lies the potential for healing IMHO 😉
Well it’s Dec 21 2012 and in light of current events and the season, my songwriting partner Carol and I were inspired to write a Christmas song and try our amateur hands at filming a music video. I was invited to play at the annual Christmas Eve celebration in our new hometown of Lyons CO. We wanted to contribute something special and this is what came through. We wrote, recorded, filmed and edited the song in 4 days this week. I recorded a simple acoustic guitar and vocal version of the song that is available for free download here!
This song says everything I feel in this bittersweet holiday season and it is my gift to you!
Thank you for all the love and may this holiday be an opportunity to feel the gratitude in all our relationships as we never know how long we have to be here in this precious lifetime. “Maybe right now is all we’ll ever be!”
I’ve been on a bit of a hiatus over the last two years writing, recording and developing some new technologies for my live show. (I posted a video of my version of Strawberry Fields Forever below from last Friday’s show since so many people have been asking about my arrangement) Not to mention totally losing my voice last fall because of a polyp on my vocal cord. That put me on an emotionally intense 6 month healing journey that ended up with miraculous healing WITHOUT having to do the standard surgical procedure for this type of situation (same surgery that John Mayor, Adele and Keith Urban all had last year). I feel extremely blessed and it’s like I have a whole new lease on life and singing.
I know it’s been difficult for lots of folks over the last two years as it has been for me too. Yet through it all I feel like there has been incredible growth that for me seems to always come down to “How much love can I accept in my life?” I feel like I spend a lot of time resisting life by getting stuck in self perpetuated loops of old fear based thought patterns. Then I remember that just like in the Art of Live-Looping I have the choice to undo and erase loops I don’t like and replace them with new loops that bring more good things into my life. I seem to come back to the Gratitude loop….finding things to be grateful for always puts me in a better space. A few of those things are all my friends and fans in the Chicagoland area, playing music for people I love and sharing that good vibe through songs.
I’ll be in Winter Park at Cooper Creek Square for a show on Friday and a Art of Live-Looping workshop on Saturday. Next week I’ll be teaching at the Rocky Mountain Folks Festival Song School and playing on Saturday at 5pm in the Wildflower Pavilion.