2003 John Lennon Songwriting Contest, garnering a prize of 1,000 dollars and major publicity.
In addition, he won "Song of the Year" with the West Coast Songwriting Association ("Home to Oregon")in 2003 and in 2004 the same song won third place in the WestCoastSongwriter's International Song Contest. He was selected as one of the top three singer-songwriters in the Bay Area by that organization. He also was featured on the SIBL (Songs Inspired by Literature) compilation CD from the Artists for Literacy Program, sharing soundtracks with the likes of Tom Waits, Steve Earle, Roseanne Cash, Vicki Randle, and David Bowie.
The Shape of Things to Come album blends 12 songs from a variety of genres, including Country, Folk, Americana, Blues, Pop, and Rock around central themes of personal transformation and the future. Beginning with the majestic "Home to Oregon," a tribute to his home state and his great-grandfather, the collection moves to "Against the Grain," a statement about standing up against a world of negative conformity, and slides into the mid-level rock tune "Touch and Go" about lost love. Following are the title track, a 9/11 reflection, "The Shape of Things to Come," and then "Leaving Cheyenne," a deep country ballad picked up by Crutchfield Music.
"The Ballad of Poker Alice," the riveting story of a legendary cardsharp and bordello Madam on the early railroads who carried a Bible and big gun, was a winner on this year's SIBL project. Other cuts on "The Shape of Things to Come," produced with guitar and arrangement artistry by Kevin Harris (Harwood Studios), are "Beginner's Eyes" (also picked up by Crutchfield Music), "12th Street Hill," a montage of early childhood days, the bluesy "Please Notice Me" (from a dog's point of view), and the humorous "Full Body Transplant," complete with sound effects, about getting older and needing new parts. "Table for One" expresses grief and loss and is done solo/styled by Larry on a nine-foot grand piano at B. Kurnow's Switchback Productions. "Creeper" Kurnow also adds his fabulous harmonica style on three separate cuts on the album. "You Gathered Right," a fast-moving country song about leaving love, was co-written and recorded by Reed Fromer at West Umbrella Productions, with vocal by Loralee Christenson.
There are six "Best Song" winners at WCSA Open Mics on this album, and each song has high lyrical and story appeal and solid vocals--these are highly listenable tracks with contemporary and universal meanings. Larry continues to perform in the North Bay and Bay Area, and has several sold-out performances to his credit. He was featured on the front-page cover article for the Sonoma County area "On Q" section of the Press Democrat Newspaper in February of '04
and was also featured in a Petaluma Magazine article in April of '04 entitled "The Healing Power of Songwriting."
He recently completed a three-concert tour of Sonoma County Libraries under a National Endowment for the Arts grant, performing his songs related to the theme of courage.
Larry just retired as a high school teacher, and was given "teacher of the year honors at Casa Grande H.S. in Petaluma. He continues as a Family Counselor in private practice.
He has been writing original music for almost five years. During the worst part of a life-threatening neurological disease contracted in 2000, he began writing music and credits his miraculous recovery in part to the healing power of songwriting. "The songs have a life of their own," he says, it sometimes seems pretty mysterious, and I've been very, very fortunate to learn the craft of songwriting from two of the greatest writers around, two people with a number of top hits to their names...Bonnie Hayes and Steve Seskin."
His new album "All Things Considered" is set for release in early spring 2006. Among other new songs, his train song "3804" won third place in the 2005 Unisong international song contest, one of four finalists out of over 1,000 entries in the folk category. The song is part of a two-song "train" CD which will be used for fundraising to save the engine in his home town of Petaluma, for historical and community purposes. His country tune
"That-a-Way" has been picked up by a number of A&R reps for pitching to the "bigs" in Nashville.
Check out the artist's website:
1. Home to Oregon
2. Against the Grain
3. Touch and Go
4. The Shape of Things to Come
5. Leaving Cheyenne
6. The Ballad of Poker Alice
7. Full Body Transplant
8. Twelfth Street Hill
9. Please Notice Me
10. You Gathered Right
11. Beginner's Eyes
12. Table for One