Hey y’all! It’s been awhile since I’ve been in touch. Things have been so busy!!!! But I wanted to take a minute to let you know about all of the exciting things that have been going on and all of the exciting things coming up!

First of all, you may have heard that I attended the Bonnaroo Music Festival in Manchester, TN at the beginning of June with the brass band that I’m in, Wasted Potential. It was my first time camping (!!!) but I think I nailed it. We performed parades every day, including a parade to open up the festival and another one where Chance the Rapper walked alongside us! We also played two shows at the Christmas Barn, including our grand finale on Sunday night before heading back to GA. The energy was so high all weekend! I can’t wait to see where this band is headed!

This past weekend was spent in San Diego laying down the basis for the tracks for my upcoming country album. Many of you have been listening to my song Whiskey In the Parking Lot for over a year now. We had to record that one quickly in order to get it in my friend’s movie Live Or Die In La Honda (which is available on Amazon Prime) but now we are ready to work on the rest of the album. We laid down the basics for 15 tracks in only two days! It was a ton of work, but also a ton of fun. This project is extra special because I’m working on it with my brother. He’s playing some bass and guitar, but there are also a couple duets. There are several nostalgic songs on this album and it’s my first endeavor in country. I can’t wait to see how it turns out! We still have a bunch of long distance work to do, so be patient, but just know that so far this record kicks butt! I’ll keep you updated on our progress.

In addition to recording my own album in San Diego, I have started spending some time in the studio with Mudcat for his new album as well. We are doing some studio tracking, but we are also working our way up to a live recording in August. More details to follow. AND I will be headed to Athens to do some studio work with Wasted Potential at the beginning of July. Lots of new music in the making y’all. It’s an expensive exciting time.

But what’s going on performance wise? How can you come see me? Well, there are a lot of opportunities in the coming month. First of all, in case you have forgotten, I play every Wednesday afternoon at Darwin’s with Bytchcraft. Hayley and I have been learning a lot of new silly songs, plus I’ve been playing some of the new stuff if you want a taste for what’s going on on the next album. Every so often we are gifted with special guests, and there’s rumor of a reunion with Skye Paige. I can’t think of a better way to spend your lunch hour than with some free music. Music is from 1-4. Darwin’s is located at 234 Hildebrand in Sandy Springs. Darwin’s Burgers & Blues

This weekend, as is the case with the last weekend of every month, I’ll be performing with Mudcat at Northside Tavern both Friday and Saturday night. We’ve been playing a lot of the songs off the new album as well. Bottom line? If you want a sneak peek at all this new music come to a show!!! Northside is the best blues bar in Atlanta, if not the world, and certainly the best dive bar in Atlanta. I personally consider it a second home. If you have not been there yet, you really need to come down and get a feel for its character yourself. We play Friday and Saturday night, with music starting shortly after 10 pm. Northside is located at 1058 Howell Mill Rd NW in Atlanta. Northside Tavern

The first Sunday of every month, this time falling on the first of July, Wasted Potential plays a jazz brunch at Nowaks in the Highlands. We set up in the parking lot and play to you drinking your mimosas on the patio. We play from 12-3. Nowak’s is located at 1397 North Highland Avenue in Atlanta. Then on 7/6 we will be playing at Terrapin Brewing in Athens. Terrapin is located at 265 Newton Bridge Rd, and music begins at 9pm. Nowak’s  Terrapin Brewery

Thursday, 7/12, I’ll be performing with my band at the Hunt House in Marietta. I am very excited about my debut performance at this venue. This is a quaint little house tucked in near Kennestone Mountain. It’s an intimate setting with local catering. I have attended a few shows here and it is always an excellent time. This will be my first time performing here, so let’s pack the place out! I’ll be performing all the songs off my most recent release, Unleashed, as well as a few songs off the upcoming album. I’m playing with an excellent lineup as well, including Lee Goodness from Curtis Mayfield on drums, Jacob Holliday on bass, Chad Mason on keys, and Daryl Dunn on sax. Looking forward to sharing my soul with you at this new venue. $5 cover. The Hunt House is located at 1127 White Circle NW in Marietta. Hunt House

Saturday, 7/14, I’ll be returning to the Grand Champion BBQ patio on Canton St in Roswell. Join me for some delicious BBQ and fascinating people watching. GC BBQ is right in downtown Roswell in walking distance from several bars and restaurants. I will be playing all of my original tunes, just me and my acoustic. Come hang out with me! Music is from 6:30-9:30. GC BBQ is located at 982 Canton St in Roswell. GC BBQ

On Friday, 7/20, Wasted Potential will be returning to Northside Tavern. I don’t want to sound like a broken record, but this place is awesome. I’ll leave it at that.

Sunday, 7/22, I’ll be performing at the Findley Plaza in Little Five Points for Little Five Arts Alive. Arts Alive is an artists’ market in Little Five Points that continues throughout the summer on Saturday and Sunday evenings. There are several different artists set up with tables of their works and artists of all sorts performing. It takes place every Saturday and Sunday from 5-8. On this particular Sunday I’ll be performing from 7-8 pm. This is your opportunity to wander around Little Five Points and experience local art. Little Five Points is on the corner of Euclid Ave and Moreland. Little Five Arts Alive

On Thursday, 7/26, Wasted Potential will be playing at Moonshadow Tavern in Tucker. This is a neighborhood dive bar that loves live music, and is always a good time. Music starts at 8 pm. Moonshadow is located at 3976 Lawrenceville Hwy in Tucker. Moonshadow Tavern

And then, you guessed it, the last weekend of July I’ll be back at Northside Tavern with Mudcat on 7/27 and 7/28. Same rules apply. I personally can never get enough of Northside Tavern.

On Sunday, 7/29, I’ll be performing my gospel show with my friends at Darwin’s Burgers & Blues in Sandy Springs. This is one of my favorite shows. We play spiritual songs of all kinds and genres, ranging from traditional gospel to Willie Nelson to Taj Mahal to Stevie Wonder. This show is kid friendly and very much encourages dancing and crowd participation. Plus, Darwin’s has added chicken & waffles to their menu for this very occasion (Sundays only). Come raise a joyous noise with us! Music is from 4-7.

And finally, to finish out July, I’ll be participating in the semi-finals of the Tin Roof Acoustic Showdown on Monday, 7/30. I managed to make it past the first round by myself, but this show is gonna be packed with talent so every vote counts! Come out and listen to some of the best songwriters in Atlanta and cast your vote for meeeeeee! There’s some really great prizes if I make the finals, and I did win a gift card last time, so if you say hi to me there’s a chance I’ll buy you a cocktail… Plus, Ian Schumacher, who runs the event, is one of my favorite people and has given me all kinds of free advice, so he deserves the support of our community. Tin Roof is located at 2591 Briarcliff Rd NE in Atlanta. Tin Roof Acoustic Showdown

That’s it for July but there’s a ton more coming in August, including Thursday evenings at my old hangout Doc’s in Smyrna and a Wasted Potential show at the Arts Center in Marietta. So stay tuned! I can’t wait to see all of you and share some new music!!!

Feel free to visit my website at www.mandistrachota.com or find me on social media,


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