End of April Update

April showers bring May flowers for sure!

Last week Wendi and I had an amazing time at our ECC Central Conference Celebration 2019, I got to share and do a music set, attend several very inspired message and fellowship meetings with old and new friends. Thankful!

GKB is about to play Motorcycle Sunday in Aurora, Illinois with more old friends and tomorrow I fly to North Carolina for a cigarbox guitar building workshop and a show.

Then next Tuesday I’m bringing a concert to Joliet Treatment Center (an Illinois prison where inmates diagnosed with mental health issues are), my second visit there.

Just look through my posts in my site here and you can find my entire May schedule. I’ll be adding my whole June schedule in a few days also.

As per earlier post/s, my tracking is done on “Ain’t No Bars” (Around My Heart) project, and my tracking on the protest project which will follow is maybe 1/5th finished so hopefully I’ll get more of that recorded over the next month.

Loving the rain in Chicago today, truly dig being in it when dressed for it. If you’re homeless and the wind blows near the lake as it often does, not so nice. Perspective.


As I age to really listen and understand “the other’s” perspective is more and more important to me. I think it’s always been like that for God as He loves and cares deeply for everyone whether a full-on lout or a (seemingly) “respectable” person. He makes His sun shine on the righteous and unrighteous, and His rain falls on the just and unjust.

Lord help me be just in Your justice and not “just US”!

I hope your Spring (in the northern hemisphere) is a good one. For the other half of the world, may your autumn be blessed.

As always, thanks for stopping by! -Glenn



One huge funnel-down issue is that of DESIRE. Ohhh yeah, like how many regular or just occasional desires might you consider in your own life? Then there are those in the lives of your spouse, kids, loved ones, friends, foes. And finally you might even think about whether there is a God and if so, what God’s desire is. I list this last for several reasons.

First, definition of the English word “Desire”:

From Latin: desiderare- to long for, wish for; demand, expect

From (circa 1200) Old French desirrer- wish, desire, long for, to express a wish to obtain

Here are just a few of the many Old Testament and New Testament examples of the term in use there:

Psalm 51.6 directs us to of one of God’s desires for us

Isaiah 53.2 speaks of our lack of desire for the Messiah

1 Peter 2.2 talks about a right desire for God’s Word

James 4.2 mentions attitudes and actions manifesting from selfish, destructive desires

So of course there are excellent and good as well as rotten and damning desires in terms of what The Bible has to say about such matters.

All desire isn’t sinful nor hurtful to yourself, others, nor causing a breach in relationship to Jesus Christ -but some desire/s indeed corrode that relationship. The same goes for relationships between ourselves and people.

There are times we are comfortable with others merely due to shared desire, and other moments when we move into “fight or flight” mode due to not sharing the same desire/s.

If you’re a sinner like me (you are) and need God’s mercy (like me) you will eventually have to reconcile with Him, then others, and all the while your (like mine) desires are a major issue that must be faced. This isn’t always easy nor do we love to think, weigh, consider the life or death giving stuff of desire, but I am convinced it’s part of mature faith in Jesus and even outside of that, how we interact with people on the planet whether with grace or brutality.

Things to consider along the journey?

As always, thanks for stopping by! -Glenn

GK May 2019 Appearances

Here’s my tour schedule for May. Mountains, biker events, behind bars, cigarbox guitars… looking forward to each stop! Hope to see some of you on the road :

As always, thanks for stopping by my site 🙂 -Glenn


Evans Auditorium
191 Main Street, Banner Elk, NC 28604
Glenn will perform solo blues at Evans Auditorium in Banner Elk, NC (191 Main St. W) on Thursday, May 2. All proceeds will benefit Catalyst Sports (www.teamcatalyst.org/boone.html), an organization dedicated to providing the highest quality of adaptive sports to individuals with physical disabilities. Doors open 6:00 PM, show starts at 7:00 PM. Ticket price $11.50. For more information, contact:
Email: stewarth@lmc.edu   Web: https://hawk-empire.ticketleap.com

SUN MAY 5 AURORA, IL  12 Noon- GKB (the entire event runs 9:30am-4:30pm)

Glenn Kaiser Band

3 Piece Blues/Rock @ Motorcycle Sunday Aurora, IL

Philips Park 901 Moses Drive Aurora, IL 60504   More info.: 630.898.5296


TUE MAY 7 GK SOLO BLUES @ Joliet Correctional Center, Joliet, IL

Cookin’ BBQ, Blues and cool people w. sweet bikes. GK and music appx. 12:30ish
24466 W. Eames Street, Channahon
Info.: Michael Kratochvil at 708.821.3181

Easter 2019 Lyric

The song melody is in my head. I’ll record it in good time…

May you know and follow the One and Only Risen Savior: Jesus Christ!

As always, thanks for stopping by. -Glenn

EASTER IN A BOTTLE -glenn kaiser

How many days
How many nights
Tears, pain, shame
You know every drop that falls
Listen to the rain

How we cling to the vapor
Dust to dust return
The same sun that brings us light
Surely melts and burns
Here no continuing city
We seek one to come
In Your deepest suffering
Blood poured out for us

First the darkest hour
Then came the dawn
That stone rolled away
Then death could not be found
Our tears in a bottle
Daybreak comin’ ’round
Our cryin’ will be tears of joy
Drops of love come down

Drops of love come down

Restorative or Punitive Justice?

A dear friend and colleague in mission shared this with me today, and this due to another friend sharing it with him (THANK YOU Ryan and Jeremy!). It is under 14 mins. long, fully relevant in 2019.

FYI, I rarely share video clips or promote books so when I do it’s because I believe they are truly solid and important for wider consideration.

Too many people have looked the other way as well as “sideways” at anyone behind bars. The issue for me is not “them” but rather me. Where is my heart, what are my values, what is my judgment toward and for that matter, service for those Jesus called “the least of these”?

I highly recommend this Christian Kiwi Bible professor’s video clip for your consideration. His book is certainly of interest and in my case, I agree with his every word in this short lecture given in the U.S..

He has several books in Amazon, but this is the one he alludes to in the clip:

As always, thanks for stopping by. -Glenn

Beloit, Pontiac, EASTER!

Had a Sweet weekend gig at Beloit at the O.C/Josiah’s Place Anniversary (45th!!!). Love Dave and family and a great and enjoyed a full, kind crowd on the night too. Wendi was able to make it which was so cool after this last knee replacement surgery. What a sweet gift to me and old friends who’d not seen her for some time due to the medical work and rehab for it. And then the weather on Sunday driving home to Chicago- HA!!

Illinois Tollway Oasis
Sideyard Garden Close-Up April 14

The old “If you don’t like the weather just hang around for a few hours and it’ll change” happened. Took a couple of days but as I type it’s 68f warm and sunny. Spring may be hanging around for a while -we hope 🙂

Had to rise early to head through rush hour (why do they call it that?<smile>) and journey a couple hours to Pontiac Correctional Center (prison here in Illinois) for a set. It was a good thing I got there a bit more than an hour ahead of time as things got complicated re. a few items of my gear (which I’ve brought into maximum security prisons around Illinois and several other states in the U.S. plenty with zero issues), but all good. “Blessed are the flexible” came to mind 🙂 so I went in with just a few needed items for the gig. They had a great p.a. and bleachers set up in the gym, the men came in and we moved through the set and some very, very good chat time with ease and grace. These men were SO appreciative as I know they are when any event like this can take place for them. I prayed a bit driving back to Chicago as I was pretty exhausted, but just beat the afternoon rush hour to arrive home for dinner and crashed right after some chores as I was fried by then!

But SUCH a great couple days.

And now comes Good Friday, Easter –RESURRECTION– Sunday!

Time to deeply focus on what Jesus went through as we sometimes lick our own wounds, and not even to minimize those often deep and very real hurts, but He took upon Himself the sins of all in the entire world -though He never once did anything to deserve what He suffered… and did so with you and I in His mind. Wow… Worship-time. HE IS WORTHY. And yet, still knowing each of us as He fully does -WE ARE VALUED. He offers us forgiveness and eternal life. Whew. GRACE!

April 16 Sideyard Garden

I sometimes look at the daily plight of incarcerated people, one which none of us would choose for ourselves or those we care about, then I look at Jesus on the cross and next I wonder what so many of us bellyache about. Perspective indeed.

Well may your Easter BE Easter, and if you don’t walk in faith with Jesus may you risk establishing a relationship with Him sooner than later!! It’s the one most-of-my-lifetime-now thing for which I have absolutely ZERO regrets.

As always, thanks for stopping by. -Glenn

Shoebox Diddey Bow

Why? Lotta reasons. Proof of concept. Fun. Nearly free. Wendi got a new pair for walking and here was the box. I knew with a D bass guitar string it’d sound cool, just knew it. Yup!

Shoebox Diddley Bow

Not cool to leave out in the rain of course, but hey, inspired, and in part as we both sing Shoo Fly Don’t Bother Me to our sweet grand daughter.

So I decided to build this and then write a song to play on it.

I used a 3 dollar dowel rod from Joanne Fabrics on one of Wendi’s yarn trips, and the wood “bridge” was left over from a house construction project, had an eyebolt and wingnut, a screw for a string guide, drilled a little hole at bottom of neck, larger for the “tuner” at the top.

I plan to glue the cardboard tight, also glue the bridge in place. Easy enough to add a pickup if I desire, right now diggin’ the acoustic sound.

Scale bridge to string guide: 32 inches

D bass string tuned to: F

Played with whatever “slide” I happen to feel like using at the time.


Shoo fly don’t bother me (3x) Cuz I belong to Somebody

Shoo box don’t bother me (3x) Cuz I belong to Somebody

Devil don’t bother me (3x) Cuz I belong to Somebody

Jesus my Lord and King (3x) Thank You for what You’ve done for me

As always, thanks for stopping by my site 🙂 -Glenn

SPRING! New Wineskins?

Cuz “the old is better”! That sense of familiarity, sense of home, safety, control, whether totally, some or very little “right vs. wrong”, or simply personal (or shared w. family, friends, neighbors) preference Jesus’ statement about new wine needing new wineskins continues to ring true.

But in every earth year there is a Spring.

The concept is a reality in all relationships, work, social connections, even sometimes in hobbies and somewhat amazingly, even in terms of imagination and artistry. Any of us for any number of reasons just don’t want to embrace change.


A major issue in these scenarios is trauma. From imagined to actual and anywhere in the spectrum between, trauma often stays with us for life. But it’s not always life-giving. As scientists and doctors rightly tell us, pain is a gift in the sense it alerts us to pay attention, often part of the process of “early warning” where if taken care of can keep us from serious harm or greater injury.

Then there is the life-long imbalance of filtering change through sentimentality. By this I mean there remains in memory a time, place, person or people that we rightly or to the extreme romanticize, miss, look back in lament of what was, what we’ve lost, or “what might have been”.

Some spend a great deal of time and energy trying to re-gain what cannot be gotten this side of heaven. Others do all they can to protect themselves from what they suspect would be greater loss and/or continually seek the old, familiar however they can find it with the idea they can regain that sense of personal fulfilment and desires being met once again.

My actual early traumas in life were few but to me, deep. My earliest memories of such was our family moving and my best friend (several dogs, several times) having to go away because our new landlord and home couldn’t accommodate them.

Then came the day my Mom sat my brother and I down to tell us she was divorcing my Dad, that she didn’t love him any more, it was over. That remains one of the major traumas of my life.

Three incredibly horrible acid trips, a suicide attempt, my father-in-law visiting what was likely bi-polar episodes on myself, family and church, a long list of other intensely affecting events over my lifetime didn’t exactly happen without my notice! BUT… I don’t live in them nor do I worry or fear change -at all.


I am often energized by change. New wine, something new, different or exotic has rarely worried me. No doubt I don’t automatically love, fully embrace nor leap with joy over every new change or even loss of all things! And yet… I neither live in the past nor fully dwell in the present. The present as well as future will be forever bright to me. Why and how?

When you are convinced you have been gifted with eternal life, that you actually have daily fellowship and acceptance by the one and true God Who is unchanging and Who has better plans than any human or group of them could imagine and conjure, and that nobody and nothing can ultimately change HIM and what HE plans (see Jeremiah 29.11 for example) the details, the “wine” and “containers” aren’t the core issue. Rather, it’s the RIGHT NOW RELATIONSHIP.

As I’ve mentioned before, change and pioneering has its risks -but so does sitting stagnant and refusing to change. The brittle and dying hickory branch is quite different from the sap-laced willow and I’ll take the willow every time in a strong wind.

As I age and read, listen, interact with all sorts of people both near and far in this world I see the need to embrace change, growth and greater focus as well as dependence on the God Who is UNchanging. WE of course… will change. If it is in becoming closer to and in character, more like Jesus -and if even in some small way more people will truly love and obey Him via my example, let the changes come!


It’s Spring again in Chicago- bring it on! 🙂

As always, thanks for stopping by. -Glenn

Slide Guitar SLIDES, Basics

Really a broad and deep subject for such a basic item of use for guitar players. Or uke players for that matter. Hey, just saw a YouTube clip of a bass player using a slide on part of a song as well!

So a “slide” is some sort of thing you clasp with your fingers or actually wear on a finger of whichever hand (right or left-handed doesn’t matter) you are placing it against the string/s with. You then use your other hand to pluck the strings while the slide produces notes and chords or simulated chords out of two or more strings at a time.

I use them on 1, 2, and 3 string cigarbox guitars as well as typical 6 string guitars set up exclusively for slide playing as well as a 6 string lapsteel.

Just a few of what I use/have used for playing slide guitar

Pictured are 14 (not all!) of the slides and stuff I have and actually use for slides both in recording and shows for many years. Whether copper, steel, composite metal of some sort, bone, glass, acrylic, bit of pvc, a butter knife handle, jackknife or you-name-it, they all work. Or can work depending on your willingness to figure out what best suits your aesthetic, your sense of tone, feel, your hand/finger and such.

Some like to play upright in typical playing fashion by placing a slide on their ring finger, some on their little “pinky”. The second technique works well if you set your strings high enough (“action”) on a six string guitar which means you can swap off playing with pointer, middle and ring fingers normally in pressing the strings down between the frets, then very quickly in the same song change over to slide. Often one uses normal tuning and plays on the D, G and B strings while muting the others, this gives you a basic G root chord for playing in the key of G.

A very small number of folks play “over the top” which is how I learned as a young lad. Being right-handed I placed a glass or metal slide on the pointer finger of my left hand. Australian Dave Hole plays killer slide just that way.

Lastly, there are more than a few slides lapsteel or pedal steel guitarists use, typically some type of “tone bar slide” as the nomenclature goes. They may be mostly flat and smoothly rounded on the end (I have a vintage one gifted me by a friend) or larger and heavier with easy-to-grip top indents and a larger rounded bottom for placing on the strings.

Regardless, one must have high enough string action and typically the heavier gauge strings the better for the weight of heavier slides but mainly for tone and durability (at least sometimes, thicker strings last longer).

Using a git with a pickup and setting it up for slide playing means adjusting the pickup higher to get closer to the strings but not so close as to press the strings right onto the pickup when playing. Action of strings is of course raised by adjusting the bridge and sometimes nut on the guitar (the things the strings lay across toward the bottom of the body and near the top of the neck, respectively).

You can web search for 6 and even 3 or 1 string tuning ideas and more, but on 6 stringers I normally tune to an open E chord, sometimes open D or G. As in all slide playing unless on a normally tuned 6 string git you must learn the new scales, that is, if soloing, where to find the patterns for individual notes or phrases when using any alternate (not typical E A D G B E) tuning. Practice and memory then brings good results!

As I’m a creative person and like change-ups, sometimes I might lay a guitar across my lap or play it on a keyboard stand in front of me ala lapsteel while other times I play it in normal position while seated or standing. Whatever seems most natural and comfortable to YOU is how to play slide guitar.

There are as many opinions as to what material is best re. actual tone and comfort as there are slides, that’s for sure.

My bud Shane Speal has a site you might like on this subject as well- http://www.stubbyslide.com and what he does with a portion of the loot is truly cool.

Up in http://www.cigarboxnation.com you can find a ton of info., styles of slides and playing ideas as well as instruments to play ’em on. https://www.cbgitty.com/ and also Randy Bretz (https://sites.google.com/site/diamondbackcigarboxguitars/randy-s-bone-store) does amazing work re. slides and all things related)  -these are all great sites to learn and possibly pick out something you might enjoy.

Finally, tone- and this is simply saying what I hear from basic slide material: metal slides sound brighter and sometimes a bit thinner while glass puts off a “gliss” sound, smoother but with overtones and harmonics galore, composite slides vary in all these features tonally while wood (yep, they’re out there) and sometimes pvc or bone give off a warmer sound.

Hopefully this helps you consider a world of no-pain-no-callouses- guitar playing 🙂 with the sweetest and most easy way to create sweet vibrato with a guitar that I know of. Been saying this for years and I believe it to be true.

As always, thanks for stopping by! -Glenn




Tue. April 9 @ Pilgrim Lutheran Church Chicago -GK w. others providing music for Shane Claiborne dealing w. inner-city gun violence. 6 – 8pm All details: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/beating-guns-tour-chicago-il-tickets-55057011002

Sat. April 13 Josiah’s Place Beloit, WI GK Solo Blues 1175 Madison Road Beloit, WI 53512-1075  608.365.0365 www.overflowingcup.org

Mon. April 15 Pontiac Correctional Center (Pontiac, IL) GK Solo Blues

Mon. April 22 GK @ Cook Co. Jail (Chicago)

Thu. April 25 – Sat. 27 Celebration 2019, Lake Geneva, WI @ Ev. Cov. Cen. Conf. Annual Meeting -GK Speaking and bringing a late-night Solo Blues set.  https://www.centralconf.org/celebration2019/

There are a couple more than these but they’re in-house over Easter weekend and such. So here you go, hope to see some of you (but not in all these places!).

As always, thanks for stopping by. -Glenn