Since the documentary about last year’s 10,500 mile motorcycle odyssey exploring the legacy of Will Rogers is complete, I’m looking at the road ahead for 2023. My goal for this year’s tour is to book what I’d like to call the “Will Rogers Wandering Soul Road Show” if the family approves. Initially, the event will consist of a screening of The Road To Will and a performance of Get The Bunk Out, with the possibility of The Cowboy Cabaret, depending upon the venue.
The Road To Will has a runtime of one hour and forty minutes, and an intermission can precede a presentation of Get The Bunk Out, an hour long performance of Will Rogers’ political humor infused with some original poetry and the songs “Every Little Thing”, “Keep It Simple, Stupid”, and “One People”. The Cowboy Cabaret is an interactive performance where the audience gets to choose what songs they’d like to hear from a deck of custom cards, and it can be used as an opening performance of a few songs or as an encore.
While I can certainly entertain for three hours by myself, I would also like to connect with local musicians who would be willing to serve as members of the Wandering Soul Band for the performances. I’d like to be able to work with local organizations to have contests or auditions, but I’m not sure if I’ll be able to make that happen for this year’s tour. However, if I can make this work, I’d like to integrate that in coming tours.
Over the next few years, my hope is for the Wandering Soul Road Show to include other artists and grow into more of a follies type performance and eventually a Circus of the Arts. I can imagine a caravan of artists arriving in a town for a week or so, performing at their various venues throughout the week and inviting their audiences to a weekend festival, where all of the artists will perform throughout the event. I’d also like to include local artists and vendors to participate in the event.
For the 2023 tour, I intend to book events every five days or so in 23 cities along the route during August, September, and October. Since the trip is about half the length of last year’s tour, I’ll be able to take more time to meet the people in the places I visit and do more exploring. This will provide me with opportunities to capture video of the experience, which will be edited into a webseries when I get back to Sarasota in November, and possibly more performances.
This year, I intend to visit St. Augustine, Savannah, Charleston, Raleigh, Clifton Forge, Washington DC, Philadelphia, New York, New Haven, Boston, Bar Harbor, Montreal, Toronto, Detroit, Fort Wayne, Cincinatti, Louisville, Nashville, Pigeon Forge, Asheville, Fayetteville, Tallahassee, and Gainesville.
Currently, I am opening up to bringing an Executive Producer on board to help with legal and marketing costs, and would love to connect with a booking agent eventually. For now, I’m just doing what I can do with what I’ve got. If you feel inclined to help, I’m open to whatever you feel you may have to offer.