Friday, April 1, 2011

Homegrown Radio 4/1/11 – Ami Worthen

A happy Friday everyone!  It sure is a happy Friday here at Robert Frost’s Banjo because I’m very excited to announce a special guest for this month’s Homegrown Radio feature: Ami Worthen of the band The Mad Tea Party

If you’ve been a regular reader here, you know that I was delightfully blown away by the Mad Tea Party’s music when I first encountered it last year (the band has been around for several years, so I’m a Johnny-Come-Lately), & I gave them a write-up right here in this space.  The Mad Tea Party has many musical strengths—Ami Worthen’s partner Jason Krekel is a fabulously talented guitarist, for one!—but to my ear a big strength of the band is Ami’s exceptional songwriting ability—not to mention her fantastic singing voice. 

So when Ami Worthen agreed to supply a couple of songs for this month’s Homegrown Radio series, I was stoked.  I should mention that Ami has just released an ep called 4 for 40, which you can download on a "pay what you can" basis right here.  Ami has generously made the album available without setting a minimum price, but if I can add my 2 cents: please pay what you can—this is a seriously talented musician & she should be compensated for her art!

The two songs Ami submitted for Homegrown Radio are not on the ep, so these are a bonus.  In addition to “Pounding Down the Trail,” today’s selection, I’ll be posting her second song on Friday April 15th, so make sure not to miss that.  Also, you can follow Ami Worthen on her aptly titled blog, Ukulele Rockstar.  She posts regularly, & her observations on music, art & more are always interesting!  Now let’s see what Ami has to say about “Pounding Down the Trail”

This is a previously unrecorded old song that I decided to document recently. It's pretty straight-forward. It's a reminder to myself to focus on the process rather than being attached to any particular end goal. Easier said than done. It also acknowledges the power of my calling to make and perform music, despite the impracticality and frequent uncomfortableness of it. I can't expect anyone else to understand why I continue to put myself out of my comfort zone. But I do believe there is magic in doing.

There’s definitely magic in Ami Worthen’s music making—enjoy!  The lyrics follow the mp3 player!

  pounding down the trail by Ami Worthen

I am pounding down the trail
if I walk then I won't fail
this is what I'm here to do
my aim is true
there is sunlight through the trees
and the birds they sing to me
I know that this is right
even though sometimes
I can't sleep through the night 


I'm gonna do what I gotta do
I don't care if it doesn't make sense to you
I take each step along the path
it's a privilege to be bold
I am climbing up the hill
so glad I'm climbing still
though the peak is far away
I see something beautiful each day
the cicadas in the trees
one of nature's mysteries
they give me faith
sometimes in life
you simply have to wait


I am walking down the line
I will get it right this time
At least I'm gonna try
So I can look myself in the eye
the wonders to behold
the adventures that unfold
the dream is all around
the magic in moving is profound


music & lyrics © Ami Worthen 2011.  All rights reserved.


  1. Thanks for that. A good, refreshingly simple song. It's hard to do "refreshingly simple" (Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers were masters).

  2. Hi Dominic: Glad you liked it--I have a lot of respect for Ami Worthen's songwriting & musicianship. She reminds me a bit of my good friend Carrie Bradley, who also did Homegrown Radio last summer. Carrie was in a band called Ed's Redeeming Qualities, & some of Ami's songs remind me a lot of ERQ. I love Jonathan Richman!


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