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KaRTunes Blog - October 2013

Oct 19 - Fred & Toni Wedding, Hamilton

Fred and Toni - Wedding, dinner, & reception party - fun dancing party for young and old
Our neighbor Fred is a music and guitar lover, and he has been Tricks fan for many years. He is an amateur photographer and our Tricks website features photo albums from Fred from many of our Tricks parties and performances. Fred got a "Tricks unplugged" music show for his wedding party, including Rick, Krystal, and Ozzy. It was a very small and intimate family get-together, with only about 30 people or so. The actual wedding ceremony was in the same room as the dinner and party. Greg, the owner of our Allegan Tru Value store, was the officiant for the modest ceremony. Rick sang a song that he learned by Fred & Toni's request for the occasion, Bob Dylan's "To Make You Feel My Love". Krys & Rick sang their best love songs for dinner music, then we got Ozzy onboard and started playing some dance music. Much to our delight, the kids got involved with some crazy antics and dancing, which inspired the adults to join in. We ending up having quite a little dance party for the next couple hours. Thanks so much to Toni and Fred for making us part of your intimate wedding celebration. We're looking forward to some anniversary parties in the future.
Fred & Toni Wedding

Oct 6 - Larson Family Reunion, Grand Rapids

Nicest, biggest back yard we've ever played at. Very fun and friendly family reunion.
Each year Allegan "Wings of Hope" Hospice holds a benefit auction. Krys and Rick donate one 3-hour show for the charity. The Hospice people package our music show with a pig-roast "party for 100". The Larsons were the top bidder and winner of the Pig Roast / KaR Tunes party. To get together a party of one hundred people, they decided to have a joint family reunion from both sides of the family. Their house and yard is big enough to accomodate such a gathering. The party venue was the Larson's beautiful home in the affluent part of East Grand Rapids. Another nice touch was they hired a photographer to take family pictures for whoever wanted them. It was kind of a drizzly day, not too warm, but the rain cleared up by the time the party started. Rick & Krys mostly served as background music for lots of family conversations and bonding. We had a few people come and sit by us and really pay close attention to our music, but we couldn't be the center-piece of this party; it was all about the family bonding. So, we were very happy and honored to be party of such a special family party. A freebie gig for us, but definitely worthwhile and fun. Check out the photos.
Larson Family Reunion

KaRTunes Blog - September 2013

Sep 20 - Band X Party for LoneWolf, Covert, Mi

Great "Inner Circle" party . . . Hard rocking, heating up the barn . . . All ages party - LoneWolf with grand-daughters.
Another fun small party for Band X, in the middle of a blueberry plantation. This one was very short notice, only planned from about two weeks ago. But, we still expected over a hundred people, so LoneWolf & wife Jeanette had food for at least two hundred. All told, we had about 25 people show up for this Friday night party. An "insiders" party with a few old Sidetrack friends, some berry-picking co-workers, and family. (The plantation owner, LoneWolf's boss, even showed up, and he was happy with the party and impressed with the band. Cool! It was his barn we were rocking, after all.) We had to have a Friday party because that was the band's only free date, but I think that "Friday party" thing is what kept a lot of people away. Even Skip was thrown off by it; he called around 5:30 and said, "I thought the party was Saturday, but I just got a reminder on my phone that the party is tonight". Skip thought he was gonna be late, but we managed to start between 7:30 and 8pm, exactly as planned.
We played past midnight, even though there was a bit of worry about a 10pm noise ordinance that Jeanette heard about from the cops when she tried to be a good citizen and report that she was throwing a possibly noisy party. Their nearest neighbors are about a mile away, because they live in the middle of a blueberry plantation, which Dale "LoneWolf" manages. In fact, the whole reason LoneWolf wanted to have a party was to celebrate the end of the blueberry harvest, which yielded many times beyond what the owners expected this year. It was time to blow off some steam and tie one on. And that's what we did. It was just with a lot fewer people than we expected. I felt so bad that they had so much left-over food, I had to help out and bring some ham and pulled-pork home. Just had a yummy pulled-pork omelette for lunch.
The band was tighter than ever. We played two really long sets, and then one real short final set as midnight approached. Much fun was had by all. Thanks to everyone who showed up, especially our Tricks friends Dylan, Rob, Angie, and Anna. Thanks to Dale LoneWolf's family and friends who came out to party and blow off steam with us. Thanks so much to Jeanette and LoneWolf for hiring us for this great intimate party. We loved it. We always say, "we can have a blast with either ten people or two hundred people." This party proved it's the honest truth. My hangover tells me I had a better-than-average time, and the pictures tell the same story.
Great job, Band X! This was an unexpected, last-minute gig for us. Steve was at a Spartan Store convention up north, so Tricks couldn't do it. Skip said "yes" and that made it another fun Band X gig. An unexpected treat, as we had no more Band X planned for 2013. See ya next summer, I'm sure.
LoneWolf Barn Party

KaRTunes Blog - August 2013

Aug 31 - Band X Party for Duane's Birthday, Irons, Mi

Duane's Birthday Party . . . . . Dancing all day, and Rocking into the Night . . . Up North is a special atmosphere
And it was one more fun party in Irons. This time it was right in the town of Irons. This is the 4th party that Rick & Krys have played for our Irons Fan Club #2. The connection is between Rick and Kim and Linda, all who worked together at Trendway in Holland for many years. When Krys & Rick started playing the annual Irons backwoods party at our friends Tommy & Tara Phelps, we invited Kim & Linda to stop by, since Kim has a place in Irons. The first year (2007) Kim and Linda came alone and sat drinking beer while Rick, Krys, & Tim did our acoustic "sing around the campfire". The second year of "Phelpstock", Linda & Kim brought along a handful of friends and neighbors, including Duane, Kim's hubby. This time they made themselves more at home, and spent most of the night dancing around the campfire to the Rick & Krys tunes. The next year, the Kim & Linda group was even bigger at Phelpstock, with over a dozen Irons "town-folk" coming out to the woods to drink & dance with us. Finally, in 2010 they had their own separate party in the backwoods of Kaleva
, a bit north of Irons. We did Kaleva again in 2011. In 2012 Kim & Duane had the party at their place in Irons, to celebrate Duane's new "mancave" polebarn.
This year Kim & Duane increased the musical quality and quantity by hiring Band X
, our rock and roll band including Krystal, Rick, Skip, & Ozzy. You can see by the pictures that everyone had a blast, drinking and dancing all night, like usual. These people like to dance the night away. That always inspires the band to rock it with more energy and more fun. Thanks to Kim & Duane for hiring us, and happy birthday Duane. Thanks to Tammi for taking pictures. Thanks to Tommy & Tara for putting Rick & Krys up for the night. Thank you dancers!! You make it a lot more fun.
2013 Kim & Duane Party

Aug 24 - KaR Tunes at Dick's Market Brat Cook-Out, Dorr, Mi.

Krys and Rick played some fun dinner music tunes for the Dick's Market annual Hometown Cookout, featuring Steve's award-winning Brats. We sold 700 brats in less than three hours. Everyone had a fun time, and a good lunch, with spectacular weather. Thanks to Steve and his crew for dishing up the good stuff. No one can beat Dick's meats. That's the taste-tested fact.
Brat Cookout |

Aug 6 - Ozzy & Rick at Kollen Park, Holland, Mi.

Since Krystal is gone for a two-week vacation in Colarado, hiking and camping with girlfriends, we ended up doing an "Ozzy & Doogie" show for Holland's annual "National Night Out". It's a family event put on by the city, and sponsored by various churches and community groups. There is fun food, games, and music for all ages. Face-painting is very popular, as you'll see in the photos. The purpose of the National Night Out is to bring neighborhoods together in solidarity against gangs and criminal behavior. The Holland police and Fire Department are on hand to help neighbors support neighbors. The star attraction for the octogenarian crowd is the American Legion Band, with their repertoire of marching music and patriotic songs. They need some lighter tunes for a warm-up to the Legion band, and that's where we come in. Krys and Rick have played music for several "anti-crime neighbors in the park" events for the City of Holland.
This is the central event, so we couldn't turn the city of Holland down, even though Krystal is gone to Colorado. It fell on Ozzy's shoulders to take Krystal's place, so we could have an acoustic duo like the city wanted. Ozzy wore his tuxedo tails, and looked mighty dapper. Rick thought Ozzy was joking when he said, "be sure to bring your tails". The back-story is this; Ozzy works at Bunny Formalwear, and he got us all tux tails just a few months ago when they were cleaning out their "used" inventory. Rick didn't get his coat altered yet, so the sleeves are way too long.
It was good to see some of our Holland pals, including Rick's Trendway buddies. Thanks for coming out to say "hi". We had a blast plaing music in the park, even though we had to build our show around all the announcements, pie-eating contest, and martial arts display. That was the plan. We were the in-between music for all these fun events, and it was as fun as heck. Thanks to Sue Harder for hiring us. Thanks to the city of Holland for putting on a great event like this, for such a positive cause.
Tuesday Evening - National Night Out -

KaRTunes Blog - July 2013

July 27 - Band X at Phelpstock, Irons, Mi.

Another family event with live music. This time it was Tommy Phelps' 50th birthday. Rick & Krys have played music for many parties for Tommy and Tara Phelps. I suppose we could go through the Tricks History and Doogie history to check for sure, but the total of live music events we've done for the Phelps family is around 10. We've done several parties in South Haven for the Phelps clan, but this is the 6th time we've done a live music party up at their property in Irons (video clip from the first Irons party in 2007 ). We call it "Phelpstock", not because we have lots of people attending, but because it's wild, open, and free. Young and old come up north to get away from it all, and celebrate summer with the Phelps family.
The date of the Phelpstock party is around Tommy's birthday, but he doesn't like to make too much fuss about that. Usually we have around 20 family & friends sitting around the camp fire, eating and drinking. Sometimes there is a kayak / canoe trip in the afternoon. Sometimes the youngsters have quads going down the backwoods trails. Sometimes there is some hiking with the dogs, or a shopping trip to Irons or Dublin. Usually Rick's Trendway friends Kim & Linda show up with a bunch of their friends in Irons. There is always good food and beverages once we settle down in the evening around the campfire. Tommy's friend Rich is usually in charge of gathering a whole bunch of wood for the fire.
This year was the first time we had a drummer and electric guitars at our jam in the woods. When brother Steve can't make a gig, we bring in Skip Herrema on drums, and then we call it "Band X" . Rick & Krys got there Saturday morning around 11am. It was drizzling rain on and off for a few hours. Rick and Tommy were trying to decide whether to take a chance setting up outdoors by the fire pits, or to play it safe and set up in Tommy's new barn "Man Cave". When Ozzy & Skip got there around 3pm, we decided to take a chance that it would stop raining, and we plowed forward and set up outside. Good choice. It stopped raining, and didn't rain again until the next morning just as we finished tearing down and loading out. Needless to say, we rocked the woods from around 7 until nearly midnight. Rick's friend Kim showed up around 10:30 with some dancing people from Irons, just as we were losing steam and talking about quitting after a few more songs. Instead, we got it up again and rocked out for another set, even though Rick & Krystal's voices were wearing thin from all the partying, singing, and campfire smoke.
What a blast! It was fun playing with Ozzy & Skip out in the wild. There were only about 15 people there most of the time, then Kim brought another 10 people or so. We don't brag about this party because of the number of attendees, we brag about it because it's just good fun, hard rocking in the wilderness. Thanks so much to Tommy & Tara for inviting us again. We love it, and we are honored to be part of your family gathering. Thanks to Rich and Denise for the hard work chopping, gathering, and splitting wood for the fire. Thanks to everyone who brought food. Yummy! Thanks to Ozzy & Skip for saying "yes" when we asked you to do this gig with us.
Phepstock Pics |

July 13 - Krystal, Rick, & Ozzy at Lake Allegan Neighborhood Picnic

Beautiful day at the lake's edge . . . . "Almost" a volleyball game . . . . . Don't ask, - I had to touch the fish
Krys & Rick had some bottom-end help from Ozzy this year at our annual Property Owners Association Picnic. This was our third or fourth time playing for this annual Property Owners Association picnic. Plus, we've played for a few other parties in this area in recent years. So we wanted to spice it up with a little variety. That obviously meant that we needed to enlist Ozzy's help on bass. It made the whole thing so much fun. Ozzy is always a hoot to play with. He does a great job on bass, never says no, and always has some wise-ass thing to say.
Very good turn-out of neighbors. All the funnest people in the neighborhood were there; the party people, the boat people, the swimming people, the beer-drinking people, the music-loving people. Our kind of folks; beer drinkers and hell-raisers. After a big pinic buffet of the usual picnic food, everyone kicked back to sip some drinks in the shade while they listened to some "KaR Tunes plus Ozzy" jamming in the park. The youngsters started a volleyball game, but stopped after five minutes because the sand was too hot. Kids just aren't very tough these days. Some younger boys were fishing and generally harassing the local wildlife. They caught a nasty ol' Carp and made me touch its mouth, to prove I'm a man. There was also some beanbag tossing and lots of coming and going. Lots of the action moved to the pool and the pontoon boats as we whiled away a perfect summer afternoon.
It was super hot where we set up, but we managed to get through 3 hours and then some. Great jamming outdoors with Ozzy, Krys, and Rick. We're looking forward to doing more of that. While Krystal is gone to Arizona in early August, Ozzy & Rick have two outdoor gigs; a Saturday night pool party in Allegan, and a Holland city-sponsored jubilee in Kollen Park, with all kinds of vendors, kiddy activities, art, and music.
Check out the fun pics from the Carp Republic Party.

July 12 - Krystal & Rick at Grattan Irish Pub in Grattan

Local Girls dancing to the Classics . . . A birthday celebration for Sweet Jane . . . K&R Jamming in Grattan
Krys & Rick debut at the famous Grattan Irish Pub, thanks to booking agent Kevin Viilo. This is our third booking from Kevin in as many months. We're helping to fill some holes in Kevin's schedule, and he's helping us fill some holes in ours. So far, Kevin has introduced our KaR Tunes show to three new venues; the Blue Water Grill (see below), Spectators in Saugatuck (see below), and now the Grattan Irish Pub. At each of these venues we've had the pleasure of meeting new people who were loving our musical adventurism. It was no different at the Grattan Irish Pub.
The place was full of diners when we got there to set up at 8pm. Then after we started playing at 9, there was the inevitable slow fizzling of the dinner crowd. Lots of great comments and compliments from diners as they were headed out with their containers of dinner left-overs. By about 11pm, we were down to the hard-core - about 20 people who hung out with us until we finished at 1am. Dancers and drinkers, and people who loved our acoustic classic rock selections. We had a great fun time with these folks, and it would be fun to be back here when the weather isn't so picture-perfect. I can imagine a full house of rowdy Grattan-area folks, just like our good ol' Allegan bars full of local party people. But, like I always say, we have a fun time whether it's two or twenty or two hundred, just so someone is giving us some positive feedback. And we got plenty of positive feedback, that's for sure.
It helps that Jane brought her little birthday party with six of our regular Tricks friends to give us some support. Thanks so much, you guys. Happy Birthday Jane. Of course, we had to do "Sweet Jane" for Jane, and our Beatles "Birthday" song. And we made Craig and Jane dance to their old favorite Rick song from Dire Straits, "Romeo and Juliet". Thanks to the wait staff for making us feel welcome. Thanks to the Grattan regulars. And Thanks to Kevin Viilo for the booking. Check out our pics from Grattan Irish Pub.

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