Did you see your shadow on Wednesday? February is in the Haus, and it's ccccooollldddd everywhere in the US! ...except maybe Hawaii... How is this new year treating you so far? We're a little late getting this letter out...We had the alarm set to play "I Got You Babe" to wake us up, and well...
Things around here have been okay. We've been busy with behind the scenes work, and we took the 5 vacation days we were talking about! More on all of that below.
--The Sauer Kraut Grill, 734 Crabb River Rd, Richmond, TX; 2nd Anniversary Party, Fasching and Valentine's celebration!
Saturday Feb 12 1pm - 7pm With Auf Geht's duo and Das ist Lustig duo!
* * * Wear a funny costume and enter the German "Mardi Gras" costume contest! * * *
--The Sauer Kraut Grill,734 Crabb River Rd, Richmond, TX; Stubenmusi (pub music unplugged) with the Duo
Thursdays Feb 3 & 17; 6 - 8pm
-- Momma's at Sengelmann, 531 N Main Street, Schulenburg, TX; Celebrating Fasching here too, so come prepared to be a little extra foolish!
Wednesday, Feb 23, 6:30 - 8:30; The Duo
The homepage of our website reflects every performance except the private ones. Often when we're on the road, we don't have access to update our facebook pages, but will always (as long as my cell phone works) update the home page on our website if there is a last minute change. You're always welcome to give us a call or send a text if you want to make sure we're going to be where our calendar shows we're going to be.
Host your own Backyard party! Call us for pricing and availability if you have something to celebrate in late winter or early spring! We can play for you as a duo unplugged, or we can bring the sound equipment and specialty folk instruments. It's always a good time to celebrate gemutlichkeit together accompanied by a little Bier and happy German folk music!
-- Sauer Kraut Grill some Thursdays in March; Dates TBD
-- Tomball German Heritage Festival; Saturday and Sunday March 26 &27 with Robert Herridge on fiddle and Glen Renfro on drums
Hosting our trips to Europe Both trips for the summer of 2022 are still reserved, and a couple of rooms have opened up. Would you like to travel with us to Germany and the Czech Republic, Tuesday June 7 - Tuesday June 21, 2022? Or to the Black Forest and Switzerland June 22 - July 7, 2022? Our small groups have a ton of fun together! Can't choose? There is an option (and a discount) if you go on both trips. The number of guests for each trip will not exceed 20, so there is plenty of space to spread out. If you're interested, let us know soon! https://www.prostyall.com/lustig-tours-holiday It continues to look bleak in Europe right now, but our bus company and the hotels are telling us that things will most likely be back to pretty normal in the spring and summer. In the mean time, we are still hoping to go. We are keeping a close eye on things as they develop. Some countries are beginning to drop mandates, however, we are speculating how stable things will actually be. A final decision will be made before the beginning of April.
If you'd like to join us for travel in the future, we'd love to hear from you! There have been requests to return to Austria, The Netherlands, requests to do a Christmas Market tour, and some interest in traveling to different places around the US. We tailor these trips to your wishes!
Website: You can always find out what's happening with us at http://www.prostyall.com. We update our calendar as information becomes available, and always keep the upcoming gigs and last minute changes on the home page. The shop page https://www.prostyall.com/shop has koozies! (they fit party cups, pint glasses and Wurstfest cups!) The famous "Prost Y'all" sign is in stock and available for sale too! Won't that look awesome on the wall of your favorite relaxation spot! We also have shirts; including the brand new "Das ist Ross" shirts! Hat pins, and CD's that can make lunch at the office a little more like a Biergarten! Who doesn't love a 45 minute escape mid-day?
Social Media: You can still find us on Facebook, and Youtube. You can subscribe to our Youtube channel: http://www.youtube.com/valinapolka , friend us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/valinapolka "like" us on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/prostyall/ We have an instagram, but don't know how to use it.
Behind the scenes: We finally got a few days off! We've been pretty busy "upgrading" some equipment; We're actually purchasing more equipment that will allow us to provide a smaller set up in small venues. I've purchased a cajon and am learning to play some simple drum patterns with it. We're learning a few more songs that are not as German as our regular repertoire, so we can maybe expand to playing music in a restaurant without the German theme. We got to spend a lovely Sunday evening with our friends Robert and Marie Herridge to listen to accordionist Stas Venglevski when he was in Houston a few weeks ago. When vacation really started, we went for a date to see Mike Stroup play some old cowboy music, then we headed for the coast down south to do a lot of nothing. We relaxed in the hotel room binge watching tv shows we'd not seen in a long time (it rained all day that day), we napped, we walked to dinner, we walked the beach, we slept, we fed the seagulls, we bird watched, we at some more, we napped some more, and walked on the beach some more. We road tripped our way home, making stops on Goose Island to see the Big Tree, some Whooping Cranes, then drove over to Indianola to read the history boards there. We bought a ton of citrus on our way home from a fruit stand south of Kingsville. It was quite nice, and we stayed within our budget! We're already dropping coins in a jar to save up for the next time we can head down there for a few days. South Padre in January may not be sunny and hot, but it's affordable, quiet, surrounded by nature, and amazing food at really low prices in Port Isabel. The down side is Ross' shoulder had another flare up on a Sunday afternoon in mid January. We had just made a little birthday video to send to a friend, and as he set the accordion back down in its case, he said "oUCH". He was in so much pain the following Wednesday when we worked at Krause's that I had to do most of the lifting. We had excellent help from Debbie, Sheryl, Kelsey, Rodney, Gregory, David, and a few other friends who's names I can't recall at the moment. Despite the pain, the show went well, and it was a fun evening with lots of friends. Most people could not tell from Ross' playing that anything was wrong. He really does love to play music for an appreciative crowd! We were able to get him to the Doc on Feb 1 - the first apt available when I started calling on the 20th of Jan. There is nothing wrong with the bones thankfully! Feb 5, he'll have an MRI, and Feb 11, he'll get to follow up with doc about the MRI results. At least at this point, the pain has subsided to a dull ache, and he can sleep at night. For a few days, he couldn't sleep the pain was so bad. He has lost a lot of muscle tone, but the Doc isn't worried about him continuing to play, as long as I can do most of the heavy lifting. Thursday night's show at the Sauer Kraut did not seem to change the way he felt, and he played like nothing was wrong. We also purchased some new speaker stands that have crank assist, so neither of us will need to lift those 60 pound things up over our heads any more. We'll still need to lift them, but only up to about chest height. You can't be wimpy if you wanna play music for a living, ad we feel like we have another good 15 years in us! Feb 5 is a busy day, Ross' MRI in the morning, and I'll be judging German contest. It was supposed to be in person this year, but because of the covid spike, it's all online again. Ross and I made a short music video, with Carl's help, to send to the kids to watch when their results are announced. It breaks our hearts that we can't meet those kids in person at their contest this year, but hopefully some of them will come to Tomball and earn some donations for their club. They deserve the adoration they will get from the audiences for their dedication! I love getting to see results of their hard work. This year, I'm be judging folk dance and vocal solo. Otherwise, the evening of Feb 5 will be date night. We'll head out to the SPJST to hear Squeezebox with Mollie B and Ted Lange. Ross feels like he can dance, we love the music, and the friendships with everyone there. Otherwise, I'll be back in the office next week working on Tomball paperwork, and getting our tax stuff together for our CPA. Ross will be working with a young accordion player who has asked for some pointers on Tuesday. Then he'll begin testing the new equipment and building a small cabinet for it to travel and go on stage. We got most of the lumber he needs from a neighbor throwing an old solid wood bed frame away. yeay reduce - reuse - recycle! We'll also be interviewing and auditioning drummers. Our drummer Jeff is retiring from playing music on the road, and the spring festival season is already peeking around the corner at us. If you know someone who would love to drum in a German folk and polka band and spend a few weeks on the road each year, let us know!
That's all for this newsletter. Your support and friendship means a lot to us! Stay healthy, stay safe, share a smile with a stranger. We hope we get to "prost y'all" sometime soon!