Introducing the New Kitchen

New KitchenHi, everyone! I hope you’re all having a good Spring and aren’t being besieged by the amazing storms that have raged across the US lately. I got hit to some extent, but it wasn’t all that bad…  not at all like some of the horror stories I’ve heard from friends.

It’s been quite some time since I posted a blog entry; in fact, I haven’t been able to do much at all over the past few months. I’ve mentioned in posts elsewhere (my other sites, Facebook, etc.) that the New Year has brought a lot of changes into my life. Many of them have already been accomplished, but there are still more to come, and some of them are pretty big. Let me try to bring you up to date in as few words as possible.

For the past two years, I spent most of my time on tour. It was actually during that time that I was encouraged by fan requests to post some of my recipes over on Lane on Bass. The enthusiastic response led to doing videos and eventually creating this web site. Obviously, I didn’t get to do much while on tour, but during the breaks I did as much as I could. I also listened carefully to comments from viewers, kept a close eye on stats, and did as much research on other sites as I could. When it comes down to it, this entire enterprise has been a huge learning experience for me.

Near the end of last year, I decided it was time to step back from touring with other artists. There were many things that went into this decision, but the most important reason was that I want to revive my own project, Deeper Blues. “I’m not getting any younger” certainly applies to me, and I’ve got a fairly large catalog of songs I’d like to release before I’m done. My last dates were in Canada for the New Year.

Just a few days later, I hopped a flight from Maryland (where I was staying temporarily) to South Carolina. I loaded up a U-Haul truck with everything I’d had down there for a year, then headed to Illinois to pick up the rest of my things, which had been left there a year before. I now had my entire life in a truck; two days later, it was in storage near my sister’s house in Maryland.

I spent a few weeks in that area so I could see my mom. One of the hardest parts of being a professional musician is that I have spent so much time away from my family. I’m eternally grateful that I got to spend that time with mom, because we lost her last month. I’d have never forgiven myself if I hadn’t spent time with her before she passed.

At the end of January, I flew to Anaheim for the annual music manufacturing industry trade show – NAMM 2012. This is one of the biggest events of the year for musicians and manufacturers. It’s a time when tens of  thousands of us are under one roof. It gives us all a chance to catch up with friends, make new contacts, and do business within the music community as well as with the manufacturers who support us.

Only days after returning from the trade show, I headed West again, this time in my car, loaded with as much stuff as I could fit. I stayed for several weeks with my good friend Roger Barlow and his family. (Roger is the technical guru who keeps all my sites running properly.) This allowed me to have some meetings with people who will be helping me with the projects I’m starting (or continuing) this year and to check out the overall Northern California area. Once I knew the projects were going to proceed, I began to look for a place to rent. I ultimately ended up just a hair NE of Sacramento. While it’s on the edge, I can still get to the entire Bay Area without too much trouble. Remember, I’m used to 8-14 hours of travel per day to get to gigs! A couple of hours is a walk in the park as far as I’m concerned.

So… that brings us to the new kitchen. The house I rented was built in the 1950s as part of the housing for an Army base. When the base closed, the homes were purchased by a private investor and turned into a gated rental community. One of the main reasons (among several, I admit) that I chose this house was the kitchen. I’ve spent my life in kitchens much smaller than this one and with far less storage. As you can see in the video, it’s narrow, but rather long. I have plenty of counter space for all my gadgets (when they arrive), while still having more than enough space in which to work. And I’m certain I’ve got more storage than I’ll need. And that’s a welcome change, believe me!

Since all of my kitchen supplies are in Maryland – and I do mean everything – I’m forced into setting up a low budget kitchen from scratch. I actually completed the first round of purchases today and will be doing a video and post about that tomorrow. Over the next few days, I’ll continue to stock the kitchen. I’m hopeful that by the end of the weekend, I’ll be back to cooking my own meals.

Even after that’s done, however, there’s still a lot to get done before I am complete settled. In fact, one of the biggest steps is yet to come… the step that is the reason for all the other steps. I won’t say more now, because I don’t want to jinx it. And yeah, I know that’s a huge tease. Do me a favor: Keep your fingers crossed that it all works out. Because if it does, I’ll eventually let you know what it was all about. And if not… well, you’ll know by the extended leave of absence I take without warning. (smile)

Anyway… the point is that I’ve still got several weeks of prep work and planning before I can really settle into my plan for this web site. Once I get there, you’ll begin to see a regular, strong stream of content for several months. In truth, we’re still very much in the shakedown phase for Manly Kitchen. The real fun is yet to come. Stick around, ok? And remember to always, Always, ALWAYS…

Play with your food!


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About Lane

Lane Baldwin is a an internationally-acclaimed singer, songwriter, author and food lover. He wasn't trained in France, and he doesn't have his own TV show. He just loves to cook, and loves sharing what he's learned over the years. In his "real life," Lane has toured the world, bringing his special brand of Blues-infused Americana to millions of fans. At home he leads a quiet life filled with good books, good food and good friends.