Wednesday, November 30, 2011

In the (Studio) Beginning

Hello from Nashville!
To those of you who helped fund the Kickstarter campaign for Birds of Relocation, THANK YOU! I'm fairly sure it's a poor and misguided analogy, but since the old man Moses required the assistance of his fellow countrymen to hold up his weary arms throughout the miraculous sea-turned-dry-land crossing, the analogy does have elements appropriate to the setting of my new album. Change comes necessarily, if not always on a red carpet. At times, we see its approach and turn out the indoor lights hoping it will get the hint and go away. Even if it doesn't clue in, we at least trust it will have the common decency to wipe its feet on the welcome mat before entering. Whether or not we welcome it is of unimportance and non-negotiable; either way, it comes and we must respond. In better words, each of you has helped ease the very real and large financial burden by holding up my arms. Gush, gush.
I wanted to let you know that Ben (Shive, producer) and I have started work on the album. We've recorded acoustic guitars, drums (Will Chapman), bass (Brent Milligan), and some keys on seven songs thus far. A really good beginning to what I hope will be a mighty enjoyable record. Due to December schedules, he and I won't pick back up with recording until early 2012. In the meantime, I have songs to write/finish.

Some of you have asked - and many more are probably wondering - What does your title, "Birds of Relocation" mean?, and Why are they relocating? In a freak moment of actually rising to the occasion, I recently wrote about this very subject trying my best to explain my reasoning and the overall themes of BoRe here: The Meaning of a Title

Lastly, I thought you might like to see a few innocuous photos I've taken at Ben's studio (The Beehive) during these initial stages of our work together. Stay tuned for more updates, feeble Old Testament analogies, and philosophical meanderings. Thanks, guys! Hope your Thanksgiving was superb, and your Advent and/or Christmas season is nothing shy of a gift.


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Only seven days left to sponsor Eric Peters' new album!

Hi folks. Bear hugs and heartfelt thanks to each of you who contributed to my new album, Birds of Relocation. However, there is still quite a bit of ground to cover in order to reach the $12,000 goal by Friday 11/18/11.

 If you are not familiar with the Kickstarter platform (which I am using for this project), it observes the "all or nothing" tactic, i.e., if we don't reach the goal, then you get your money back, and I, the artist/patronee, receive $0 of what has been committed thus far to the project. Like I said, all or nothing. That's why it is key in these few remaining days to continue spreading the word via your favorite social media outlets, blogs, emails and megaphones. Any and all friendly and persuasive tactics are welcome. This is a team effort, and I welcome your continued support. Let's make this thing happen!

Lastly, my good friend and producer, Ben Shive, has generously offered his services to the Kickstarter campaign. At this newest tier, affectionately dubbed "The More Cowbell", Ben will produce, record and mix one song of yours at his studio, The Beehive, in Nashville, TN. Ben is good for the soul and good for your song. Thanks, guys! -- Eric

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

sponsor Eric Peters' new album and get cool extras

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Eric's Kickstarter Video


The new album by Eric Peters (and you)!

Dear Friends,

Two years ago I made a record called Chrome in which I enlisted the financial support of fans. If you supported the making of that album, THANK YOU!

Here in the year of our Lord, 2011, I am embarking upon a brand new record with the immensely talented Ben Shive producing. Once again I am asking for your patronage, this time using the secure platform offered by

Kickstarter is powered by a unique all-or-nothing funding method where projects must be fully-funded or no money at all changes hands. This way, there is less risk for everyone. The catch, of course, is that I must raise my full budget by November 18, or else go empty-handed.

A delightful aspect of the Kickstarter platform is the ability to offer you rewards and incentives for your patronage, including early downloads, your name listed as a "patron" in the liner notes, and even a crawfish or crab boil at my home in Nashville, TN! 

Please visit my Kickstarter page for futher details, and consider supporting the making of Birds of Relocation.

Thank you in advance for any support you are able & willing to offer. I am eager for you to hear the bright new songs. Until then, see you on hope's boughs.


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Monday, July 4, 2011

Under The Radar House Show Tour

I am so thrilled to announce this! I'm teaming up with the super-kind folks at Under the Radar (with whom I have done two previous tours in the Chicago area) for a house show tour anywhere within the continental USA. Let me repeat: Anywhere.

You may be thinking to yourself, "Neat, sounds fun, but I bet it's expensive." Be at peace, grasshopper. UTR is subsidizing the entire trip. Cost to each host is a mere $150 American dollars. That's not a typo. UTR will fund the rest (travel, lodging, meals) of the tour expenses. You may also be thinking, "But, Eric, we're a church and we'd like to host you. Is that possible?" The offer is by no means closed to churches, schools, colleges, airstrips, other venues, etc...., but the price runs a little more than $150 (not by much).

Is there a deadline? Yes. All tour inquiries must be submitted before July 21, 2011.

Interested? For more tour details, booking inquiries or general information, please contact:

Dave Trout

Or click this link:
Eric Peters House Show Tour

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

New Goods/Store Pricing

Times are tough. For everyone. It is no less so for a career in the creative arts as a father of two strapping young boys and as a husband to a furiously supportive wife of nearly 14 years. After much mulling, I have decided to permanently lower the prices on my entire discography (8 total) in the Goods/Store section. My solo albums (6 total) are now just $10.00 (take that, iTunes). In accordance, I have also lowered the price of the ever-popular Chrome + t-shirt Combo and the Superb Pack. (See new prices below)

Here's the newly restructured pricing:

Chrome $13.00 now $10.00
Chrome + Beep Beep shirt $25.00 now $20.00
Superb Pack (Chrome, Scarce, Ridgely, t-shirt) $30.00 now $25.00
Bookmark $10.00 now $5.00
Miracle of Forgetting $13.00 now $10.00
Land of the Living $13.00 now $10.00
Ridgely: The Only Thing $10.00 now $5.00

So hop on it, folks. Purchase in the Goods Section. Shipping charges apply.
Thank you as always, and please continue to support the arts.

Monday, April 4, 2011

When The Waters Rise

Last week I posted "Don't Hold Your Breath," the music video directed and filmed by Patrick Gines. Patrick and the Florida State University film department were kind enough to grant access to the online screener of his thesis project, When The Waters Rise, the film for which I wrote "Don't Hold Your Breath." Mr. Gines is currently writing the script for a full-length feature of When The Waters Rise.

When the Waters Rise from Patrick Gines on Vimeo.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

"Don't Hold Your Breath" (A Music Video)

A Florida State University film student, Patrick Gines, approached me early in 2010 about writing a commissioned song for his film thesis project, When The Waters Rise. Randomly, I was scheduled to play a concert at his home church in Tallahassee just a few days after his initial email. ("Random" never seems quite an accurate enough word for these sorts of moments.)

Patrick (director) and I met at the show where he handed me a draft of the script. With another couple of Florida concerts that weekend, I read the script and, in a Sarasota hotel room, wrote "Don't Hold Your Breath." Returning to Florida a few months later, with only a brief window of time to shoot, Patrick and I (mostly Patrick) made a music video - my first ever - in which a homeless man named "David" unequivocally steals the show.

DHYB will be on my new album, hopefully releasing in 2011. Until then, I hope you enjoy.

[Song recorded & produced by Andrew Osenga]

"Don't Hold Your Breath" by Eric Peters from Patrick Gines on Vimeo.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Mid-February morning, silent house, a steaming cup of fresh brewed coffee and a rare quiet moment to myself in the stillness of the early hours. I need this moment. Peering through the blurry condensation on the kitchen window overlooking my lumpy and weed-riddled Nashville backyard, it is evident that my labor yesterday pruning low-hanging walnut, hackberry and poplar branches successfully opened the understory, offering a newer, wider and brighter perspective on the whole. It is my hope that in doing so, adequate sunlight will at long last bathe the threadbare ground, offering what little grass is there the fighting chance to thicken, spread, even thrive.

As a result of the low trimming, we were obliged to relocate bird feeders along with a tin-roof birdhouse of kitschy Elvis motif to alternate locales. Wanting to keep them as close in view as would be comfortable for the birds, if only for the gift of being able to casually witness their avian pecking, flitting, chirping and occasional disagreements. These tiny, alert and nimble reminders of living abound amid shared black-oil sunflower seed and suet offerings. Repositioning one feeder near its original hackberry perch just outside the back room window, we hung the tin-roof dwelling and a moldy suet feeder along the northwestern corner of our home within the forked boughs of a leafless crepe myrtle towering above a sleeping bed of perennials. The final feeder, mere feet from the westward-facing kitchen window, we hung in a young redbud on a branch admittedly far too flimsy, too near the ground, and much too easily accessible to pillaging squirrels and preying cats. My observation point this morning, a child’s wooden chair -- short but sturdy, a veritable Lilliputian throne – accompanies the matching two-foot-tall multi-purpose table where my children eat, drink, spill, play Star Wars, color, sort beans, and carve Play-Doh. A giant in this seat, my knees uncomfortable at near chin level, I hunker down and peck away at vowels and consonants in an attempt to summon words out of the world.

A herd of Carolina chickadees, tufted titmice, white-throats, cardinals and the occasional lollygagging mockingbird, each in their naturally miraculous custom, have quickly ascertained this new location and source of food. This particular feeder, of cylindrical shape plucked from earlier retirement, has not been in use since we first moved into the house four years ago. It, like so much of natural creation, has been reclusive in hibernation, avoidance and generalized hunkering down. How wildlife adjusts with such brisk seamlessness to the blunt, enigmatic realities of winter, to unrequested change, to honing in on new and plentiful sources of sustenance with such talent and determination remains a source of great wonder to me.

Parula blue skies overhead – a psychological balm during winter’s morose lordship - the sun’s dawning light bounds and multiplies off the neighbor’s already golden yellow exterior paint causing me to wince at unexpected brightness. Squinting my eyes, the crow’s feet gather at my temples. Winter’s slow but resistant recession has begun, and every part of me approves of the transformation. Robins know, too. They sing differently in this air. With more intent, their warbles cascade with less timidity, more gallantly, with greater vigor, more musically sweeping. They know. I listen.

I myself become blurred, an unreasonable facsimile of myself beneath winter’s monochromatic gravity: graying eyes, dimming mind, exiled frustration, pent-up cabin fever, hands aching to labor, to feel soil within the creases of my palms, on fingertips and beneath nails once again; all tell-tale signs of my desire to undertake the creative act, to relocate wish and aspiration from the boughs of mere hope to that of deliverance. This longing to act, to construct, to build, to be in motion -- even to fail miserably in the attempt -- wells up in me, and the innate desire to work, to create, to bow before natural miracle, somehow resurrected and rekindled in a new locale among newfound sustenance, is a bounding source of bright illumination. I welcome the opportunity to wince at its presence, to relocate entombed ambitions and goals, to awaken from the slow pulse of hibernation, to exhume myself from the isolation of hunkering down, and at long last to listen, and summon the world out of words.

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Gus, a yellow gosling, celebrated few waddling days on the Mississippi red-dirt farm of my mother’s upbringing. Of the few sights the creature saw during its abbreviated life, the final was the inside of a German shepherd’s toothy mouth. As with King Charles I, heads rolled. The bird’s premature death caused great anguish among the Fortenberry children whose loyal affection to it was reciprocated by the bird.

Wilton and Lucille, father and mother to two girls and a boy, quietly and loyally resided over their 80-acre domain with much resolve and relentless hard work. Wilton, a denim overall-wearing, quiet, gentle man, was the rare soul willing to shake anyone’s hand. An equally reserved woman, Lucille spent many waking hours in the kitchen making chicken-and-dumplings from scratch, and simmering garden-grown vegetables in bacon grease the way only a southerner knows how. Homemade pound cake, temptingly kept beneath a clear glass dome, was nearly always available for consumption in her modest, yet insufferably hot kitchen. The day Wilton departed earth, nine years after Lucille, his head of Absalom hair was just as dark and full as the day he entered it.

The Fortenberry residence, a drab brown, unassuming dwelling rested atop concrete cinder blocks and clung to Rural Route 2, today Oral Church Road, barely a blacktop pavement east of Tylertown, county seat to Walthall County. With a rural Baptist church at one end of the road’s length, five homes, all belonging to Wilton and his four brothers, along its unpainted two lanes, a fire watchtower keeping sentinel above the canopy, a parcel of small ponds, and enough hollows and mixed pine and hardwood stands to adequately separate neighbors, the Fortenberrys – of whom there are many in southern Mississippi – eked out a nearly impoverished life amid agriculture fields, longleaf pines, dairy cows, white-tailed deer, thieving raccoons, burrowing possums, the usual assortment of farm cats, a lineage of mutts each named Rusty, and the one pet goose.

A lifelong farmer, Wilton regularly harbored geese on the property to aid in weed abatement. Released into blossoming cotton fields, the geese furiously consumed juvenile weeds and sprouting grass between furrowed rows, avoiding altogether the money crop. Once the cotton was harvested, the geese, of course, by then fully grown and fattened, found themselves on the losing end of an altogether different consumption. Such is a bird’s life: for the sake of others, disappear.

Wholeheartedly adopted early in life by the Fortenberry brood – as only children are able - Gus had but short time to make a lasting impression on my mother, who to this day can still recall its gruesome death and subsequent burial site. On the day of its funeral, Gus’s mangled head and body were sacredly reunited, laid side-by-side, inside a Diamond matchbox makeshift coffin. Little Paul, Sally and Janie were so stricken with Gus’s violent end that they would, with alarming regularity thereafter, exhume its remains, cry again over the murdered creature, and rebury the decaying carcass which was slowly attempting its natural return to dust only to be periodically coerced out of life’s circle in this innocent, yet morose exercise. Little wonder children should give praise and homage to a small, forgotten miracle; the animal did after all recognize the sound of the approaching school bus, eagerly anticipating their return each afternoon, and followed their every step up the three-pronged gravel driveway to the house. Such loyalty is hard to come by; it ought to receive praise.

Convenience rarely holds loyalty’s hand; one bears suffering amid struggle, the other flees at first sight of adversity. Intimately wiser, may we leave the world a fuller place than when we entered it. May loyalty and perseverance adorn our necks as peculiar plumage, ruffling at apathy, cackling at the monstrosity of fear. May it sustain us the way old-growth pines stand together, entwining roots, collectively bearing the brunt of wind, drought, fire, storm and one another’s burdens. May we acclaim and recognize those who God places in our lives just as innocently, filially and eagerly as the approaching sound of that familiar and welcome delivery vehicle of grace to our path. May we expectantly await its return, attending its every step to and from daily and momentary deliverance along the triple-pronged Path pointing the way within us: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Under The Radar Interview & Premiere of "Don't Hold Your Breath"

Tomorrow/Friday 1/28/11, my latest studio interview with Under The Radar airs -- including a live studio performance of "These Three Remain" (Miracle of Forgetting, 2003) and the radio world premiere of "Don't Hold Your Breath," a song I recently wrote for the short film, When The Waters Rise.

Please help spread the word and share these links with friends, cohorts and flash-mob acquaintances. UTR is now airing on over 150 radio outlets, thru iTunes podcast, and on You can read a transcript of a small portion of the conversation I had with show host, Dave Trout, here.

Lastly, stay tuned for the premiere of my first-ever music video of the song, "Don't Hold Your Breath." STAY TUNED!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Fury of a Cat

No cat has ever been accused of berating a man. But there Phil stood, unsure whether to be embarrassed or humiliated that his 12-year-old mancoon, Gertrude, on the occasion of finding nothing to drink in its water bowl had risen in response, meowing down an upper Egypt’s worth of curses, insults and complaints upon its utterly shocked human guardian. It’s not that Phil had never heard Gertrude speak; the cat had spoken on many occasions on many varying topics. The animal was a natural-born conversationalist, after all. The two would sit together for hours on Sunday afternoons watching football and sundry sporting events, alternately ridiculing and mocking the many varied elements and hubris of the athletic world. No, the issue was that Gertie had never lashed out at poor Phil for anything, much less an empty bowl. Even on the rare occasion when Phil was delayed in getting home from work, Gertrude was patient and empathetic in her hungry waiting. Phil wondered dishearteningly at the foul environment he had created. “I had no idea cats felt so strongly.”

It was a mild, winter Sunday afternoon when the two exchanged a witty back-and-forth over the results of the weekend’s U.S. 4 x 400 team relay trials. The truth came out much the way it always does: with illumined authority. Feline spittle flying and collecting on her whiskers, Gertie looked Phil straight in the eye – I refer to it in the singular because, as a young boy, Phil had lost his right eye during a visit to his grandfather’s nutria farm in the upper reaches of Louisiana’s lower delta; a tragedy not to be recalled here – and dared him say that again. Phil, thinking the cat only half-joking about his flippant remark regarding spandex and feline baldness, went ahead and repeated the condescension. He said the one thing that no cat has, or will ever tolerate. Initially visibly hesitant, Gertie eventually stormed away, tail aloft, mentally snapping once it reached the empty water bowl. That was the final straw, so to speak, procuring from her a long and violent litany of anti-human rhetoric at the expense of poor, single-eyed Phil. No eye hath seen, no ear containeth the fury of an irate, obese cat. After finally regaining composure, Phil did the only thing he thought appropriate given the tense circumstances; he quietly brushed his teeth, swallowed his daily supplemental vitamin, and slipped beneath the flannel bed sheets, foregoing his nightly routine of leisurely bedtime reading. Complete and utter silence seemed the wisest course of action. Perhaps the morning light would bring renewed peace, forgiveness, the settling of dust and dander. At the very least, daybreak would bring rest and perspective, qualities far more advantageous than fear, qualities necessary for extracting light from shadow.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Silver Tongue : Golden Voice

Soon after Chrome's release, I had what most business executives would classify as a bizarre and terrible idea for an interview. Producer Ben Shive humored me, and together we (mostly Ben) pieced together this self-indulgent mollusk of aural awkwardness. Enjoy this, the premiere, and perhaps final, episode of Silver Tongue : Golden Voice. Features a guest appearance by legendary tire salesman, Wayne Toosun.

Silver Tongue : Golden Voice

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Deconstructing Reality (Or Why I Wrote "Louisiana In The Dark")

PREFACE: Chrome has been in the public eye for over a year, and though I am grateful for the positive feedback, I get the distinct impression that not a few songs on the album are difficult to decipher. Though the following may, too, be abstract, it is my hope to offer clarity and insight into one (or more?) of the songs. Not that anyone specifically asked or cares. What follows are my reflections in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Gustav, Labor Day, 2008. The resultant song is "Louisiana in the Dark."

(9/1/08, Baton Rouge, LA)

Driving south from Tennessee to Louisiana in the pitch of night, several thoughts appeared over my mind’s horizon as the darkness opened its tree-lined jowls and welcomed me into the gut of impending reality. These are no ordinary days, no ordinary circumstances, and it was far from being a casual or relaxing drive into the oncoming path of a history-making hurricane brooding immediately off Louisiana's shores. As would prove to be the case, I was also driving to a funeral.

Pulling into my parents’ Baton Rouge driveway two hours before sunrise, Hurricane Gustav broached the shores of the state by 10am, and for the next 36 hours the wind blew trees older than World War II at 45-degree angles, toppling some, maiming many others, and deconstructing a capital city. My parents went without electricity for six days. Idling generators could be heard up and down streets. We cooked baked beans out on the propane grill as the oppressive September heat offered little comfort during the daylight, and much, much less at night. The rain fell in opaque sheets filling gullies, rivers and swallowing entire street blocks. The tempest quickly turned earth to mud, and so much of which eventually dried out remains forever buried, turning gain to loss.

My father-in-law, for so many years hampered by a litany of failing health, succumbed to the most treacherous of them all early that Labor Day morning at 3:35am, a mere cruel minutes before we managed to arrive in time to stand at his hospital bedside one final time to kiss his shriveled, bony face, and to wish him a final peace and Good Hope away, away from the shrunken fuselage of body and captor Earth. The spirit is always willing.

Vehement winds, days of constant rain, the capitulation of otherwise sound, elderly trees, and the deconstruction of life; few tragic-comedies could have been scripted with more accuracy. Tragic in that the gulf-laden skies stumbled across the region with a steamroller effect, comic in terms of the utter preposterousness of kicking someone already down. In the year 2008, my wife’s family suffered the loss of three family members in the span of five dubious months. We exhale something between utter consternation and a wry chuckle when reality persistently kicks at the battered realm.

There is no ordinary day, no ordinary darkness, and we are no ordinary creatures who inhabit their space. From dust we came, to dust we return, and though we open our hope-lined hearts to its jowls, reality does its best to deconstruct every ounce of hope in our possession. But we yearn for the light that shines with far more eminence than the thickest darkness could ever swallow, and we hope that the pain of loss and grief will eventually be bearable, habitable, even an altar unto life itself. Like the wandering Israelites finally crossing the River Jordan into the long-awaited Promised Land, stack stones upon your altar; proclaim both the blessing and the ache. Remember life as the fragile construction it is, cherishing the ones still present in your life. These are no ordinary days.

Louisiana In The Dark

Sleep in peace tonight
After a long, slow fight
We lost more than sleep
More ache than a soul can weep

When the daylight shows
That all you love is gone
And the only thing that’s left
Is the tempest’s aftermath

In my father’s house
The last and lonely sound
Is a breaking heart
Louisiana in the dark

We laid your soul to rest
With the earth still wet
Some days don’t feel like grace
When there’s a hole in a once-filled space

In my father’s house
The last and lonely sound
Is a breaking heart

In my father’s eyes
Must we say goodbye
To a breaking heart
Louisiana in the dark
No more breaking hearts
Louisiana in the dark