So... it finally happened. After years of thinking about it, hoping for it, and eventually saving for it, I moved to New York City. I am no longer a resident of beautiful Austin, Texas, and am now a resident of thoroughly crazy Brooklyn, New York. Leaving Texas after over a decade of residence has created a complex swirl of emotions, as one might imagine. While I never intended to stay in the South for nearly as long as I did, I made some of the best friends a person could ever ask for, developed relationships that will last the rest of my life, and got the opportunity to do some incredibly exciting things, including forming my favorite band I've ever been in, Progress. So, while it was unquestionably the right thing for me to move to New York, it feels strange and uncomfortable to have my beloved friends and my beloved band so far away.
Nonetheless, I had to come here. New York has been my Mecca for quite a few years, and most of my best friends who don't live in Texas live in Brooklyn, Manhattan, or Queens. And, of course, my ancestral brethren of Snarky Puppy have been here since I left Dallas for Austin. It's great to be around them again, and I'm already inspired by them and by the sea of other incredible musicians in this city to energetically continue to develop my own contribution to the global music community as a writer and performer.
That being said, that contribution is going to center largely around Progress, the band I moved 1,750 miles away from a week and a half ago. As counter-intuitive as it sounds, my move to New York is, in my estimation, crucial to the advancement of my band. Members of Progress will be assisting in the recording and production for a soul singer named Roy Lee Jones at Studio 1916 in Kyle, TX, immediately prior to our week-long outing with the Funky Knuckles, and I'll be flying down for that early next month, but there will also absolutely be some Progress shows in New York in the near future, once the dust settles a bit. We've earned a bit of a reputation in Texas, one that I'm proud of, and it's time to start developing that reputation up north.
Between successful shows with the Funky Knuckles, Buenos Diaz, Hard Proof Afrobeat, and on our own in Austin, Houston, and Dallas, and the groundwork the guys and I will be laying in our various locales over the next few months, Progress is really just getting started, and I'm extremely excited about the possibilities and opportunities around the corner. Despite (and partly due to) my migration north. All of us are determined to become the best band and production team we can possibly be, and we're gonna make some really good music this year.
But aside from that, it's bittersweet to leave my Texas family, even if it is to join my New York family. I'll be back for work and for fun regularly, though, so this is far from goodbye.