21 days until my record release!

Dear Reader,

Only three more weeks until my record release! Which means less than one week until I leave for tour with my band and Tink Tink (that’s my cute little blue trailer). Everything is sort of mostly coming together, kind of. I’ve been busy the last couple of days with desk work, uploading, downloading, emailing and flyering, but I’ve had some fun work as well. In the process of hanging posters all over town I’ve also been hiding golden tickets, which are made from the gold foil used to hot stamp my book covers and will get you in to my record release show for free. I take a photo of each ticket that I hide around the city and then send it out to instagram, twitter and facebook. In case you missed them, a few of the locations are hinted at in the photos below!

I’ve also been spending some time with my newest baby, an early 70′s Fender Pro Reverb. I’m really excited to introduce her to the band tomorrow when we practice in my parent’s basement (I never thought I’d see the day, but desperate times call for desperate measures!).

Another fun happening was picking up a sweet flyer drawn by the amazing and talented Jeff Beaver for my show on November 17 (with Brooks Ritter and Daniel and the Lion!). It’s pretty darn epic. I’m lucky to have awesome friends who are willing to make trades.

And now it’s time for me to head up to the North Country. Tink Tink and the Lost Boys await in the Never Never Land of my parent’s basement.


Countdown to… An original instrumental Christmas song?

Dear Reader,

I’m going to take a break from the record release countdown to write about another exciting happening on the LKB horizon. Sometimes it’s nice to forget about all that stuff and just think of the holidays. The snow, the coziness, the parties, the birthday gifts wrapped in Christmas paper… Well, I had an early start this year when Jared from Flannelgraph Records asked me to contribute a song to their instrumental benefit compilation, “The Holidays Don’t Have To Be So Rotten, Volume Two.” It was with great excitement that I agreed, especially since last year’s compilation featured so many amazing musicians.

To get in the holiday spirit, I decided that I would build the song predominately from Christmas gifts I received last year from my sweetheart- a Korg Monotron, Stylophone, Bliptronic 5000 LED Synthesizer, and Stylophone Beatbox. Each one is compact, totally awesome and dances the thin line between cute and badass. The song is titled “Celestial Season”, and with the exception of guitar uses only the instruments pictured below.

I’ll be sure to let you know when the compilation is available, and until then I’d better stop thinking about the countdown to Christmas (58 days!) and resume the countdown to my record release.


24 days until my record release!

Dear Reader,

Today kept me busy with a lot of desk work. I began the portion of this process where hours are spent uploading files, which is about as fun as it sounds. I did go out for a little while into the beautiful autumn weather to put up a few posters and strategically place my first golden ticket. What’s that all about, you ask? While it won’t get you in to Willy Wonka’s, it will get you in to my release show at the Earth House for free! (Pierceton, I’ll be up this weekend and you’ll get your fair share of golden tickets!) Even if you’re thinking to yourself, “I’m not so sure about that Laura K Balke,” catching both an NM Kjeldsen and Jascha set is DEFINITELY worth the search! I will instagram/facebook/tweet a photo of each ticket that I hide around the city to give a little hint. The tickets are made from the gold foil that was used to hot stamp the hard-bound books that will contain my new album.

I now present to you the first hidden golden ticket below!



26 days until my record release!

Dear Reader,

It’s been a busy weekend for an LKB in the North Country (Pierceton, Warsaw, Winona Lake). Yesterday was Mudlove’s Block of Love party and I played some music for all of the beautiful patrons throughout the day. The weather was gorgeous and I made new friends, was delighted by old friends, and consumed much coffee and cookies.

While we’re talking Mudlove, I would like to introduce to you a new addition to my merch table: custom-made Mudlove bands that feature three of my song titles- Achilles, Not For This and Retreat. I’m selling them for $5 each and they include a download card with those three songs which will be on the new record, all wrapped up in a cute little envelope. As if that wasn’t awesome enough, these custom bands will also get you in to either of my album release shows (Pierceton or Indianapolis) for FREE! They’re like wearable presale tickets! The bands are available for sale from me personally and at the Mudlove Pottery studio.

This afternoon my dear friend Mallery and I piled on the goods and modeled the world’s first wearable ceramic pre-sale ticket. See how much fun you’ll be having if you buy one?



28 days until my record release!

Dear Reader,

I am writing to inform you that the ragtag gang banded together and completed our task of binding 250 books by hand at 3 am last night. I am so thankful for all of the people who spent time in the temporary sweat shop to achieve this goal! Esther ended up putting in over 20 hours, and most everyone else 10-14. Between our two families we had a fantastic work crew. My three younger brothers missed out on a World Series game that included their beloved Cardinals, and most of the Brennamans missed out on many hours of sleep!

I feel incredibly satisfied with our finished product. I have had this concept in mind for well over a year, and to get exactly what I had envisioned without compromise isĀ  a true blessing.

Would you like one? I’ll be setting up pre-orders soon, but be sure to mark your calendar for the release shows in Pierceton and Indianapolis!




Hot stamping machine

Sweatshop workers, working and sweating

Bound books in the pressing process

Used foil

Pressing again!

The fruit of our labor

14 hours later. 250 books. Champions.

A dream realized, after 2 years and countless hours.