Mumbo Jumbo January 2018

Happy New Year from Key West!

I was walking back to a friend’s house where I’m staying, wondering what to write about in today’s newsletter. When I went into the spare bedroom, I was surprised by this photograph from 17 years ago taped to the wall. In spite of Father Time doing his merry work, I think you’ll be able to pick me out, as well as three of my closest friends and musical collaborators, Andy Thompson, Peter Mayer and Matt Thompson.


There is nothing like an old photo to put a little perspective on things and get you thinking about another trip around the Sun.

January and February are the months when I spend most of my spare time thinking about another trip around the continent. We’re getting lots of emails and messages from folks asking about 2018, and now that the holidays are out of the way, Terry Lederer and I are assembling the puzzle for this year’s tour.

For those of you visiting Key West, January, February and March have me performing a series of two-week engagements at Key West’s top music club, the Smokin’ Tuna Saloon. These dates are all listed on my website. I  have a few other concerts in February and March, which I’ll get to in a bit. I will also be playing a one-week engagement at the Smokin’ Tuna in April before hitting the road for a few east coast shows.

Joint tour with the Massacoustics in May

In May I will be hitting the road with Matt and Andy Thompson. As you may know, I recorded Chasing Hemingway’s Ghost with these amazing guys, and we had such great shows recently in Key West and at the Ram’s Head in Annapolis that we decided to tour together. Matt and Andy will back me up on the first half of these concerts and then play all their own material the second half. We are already booked at the City Winery in Nashville on May 8, hoping to be in Ohio and Pennsylvania on May 9 and 10, in Maine/New Hampshire on the 11th, and booked at the Sandbar in Taunton, Massachusetts, on the 12th. From there we’ll be working our way south towards our show at Ram’s Head on the 16th, and then gigs in Virginia and North Carolina on our way back to Nashville. We expect to fill in the details by next month, so stay tuned.

Coast to coast and Canada, late May to October

At the end of May, I‘ll hit the road solo and head south from Nashville towards Texas and then through New Mexico and Arizona to California. After finishing my Northern California shows, I’ll make my way to Idaho and Montana before taking a trip to my grandparents’ homeland of Newfoundland. By the way, if I have any fans up that way, please shoot me an email as I would love to play a gig up there! (

Later in June and much of July, I plan on performing in the middle of the country, and also hope to get back to mainland Canada for several performances. I was disappointed not to get there last year, so I’m setting time aside to get north of the border in July.

At the end of July I’ll begin working my way back for all my east coast shows. In September it’s time for the annual MAYER KIRBY MAYER tour, which we’re hoping expand a bit this year.

If you have any suggestions on venues in your area or would like to book a house concert, please send an email to and we will get right back to you.

Special events in February and March

Back in the day when I was working at the state house in New Hampshire and running campaigns, I got to know a brilliant political consultant named Jeanne Shaheen. While I ran off to Key West to write songs, she went on to become the first woman governor of New Hampshire. We remained friends, and I was thrilled to be invited to perform at her inaugural concert with Carole King, Livingston Taylor and Irish legend Tommy Makem. It remains one of my fondest musical memories to this day, and now that she is a United States senator, I’m very happy to be coming to Washington, DC, on February 6 to perform at an event for her. Joining me will be Gary Green and Emily Randle. See details on my website.

You may have read recently that Jeanne was supposed to visit Russia this month with several other senators, but the Russians denied her visa. I told her last week that I didn’t think January was the best month to visit Moscow, and anyway, I might be slightly suspicious of Mr. Putin’s cooking!

On February 19 I’ll be performing at a festival in Barefoot Bay, Florida, and at the Venice Train Depot with James White on March 22. On March 23, I’l be performing at the wonderful Hideaway in St Pete.

I also want to give a shout out to my friends in the Sacramento area to let you know that Peter and Brendan Mayer will be making a rare west coast appearance on February 6 at Harlow’s. Find the details at

 Thanks for listening.