Posted by: Abe's Blog | March 2, 2011

Welcome to the Umpqua Valley – An Audio Post

A couple of years ago, the great State of Oregon celebrated its 150th birthday. In preparation for the event, many local communities worked to develop their own celebrations and to stir up interest in area history. Local writer Ron Bolt was one of those involved with the Umpqua area region. He approached me with a songwriting project. He had written the lyrics and needed musical arrangement. I happily accepted, arranged the music, and recorded a demo with my son Abram Mantle on acoustic guitar and myself singing vocals.

The song is called Welcome to the Umpqua Valley and you can hear it here:

The Umpqua Valley is a beautiful land. Here in the Pacific Northwest, regions are typically defined by waterways. The Umpqua River defines our region, seeping underground from the great and fallen Mount Mazama, known now as Crater Lake, flowing down the west side of the Cascade Mountain range through stunning canyons, then meandering through the forest and fields of the lower valleys before once again piercing a mountain range to reach the Pacific Ocean. It is an inspiring and awesome place with vast wild places and a hardy and diverse population with a culture all our own.

Much of this area still remains as it was over 100 years ago when rugged and hardy souls came over the mountains on rough trails seeking freedom and fortune. Ron’s song presents a snapshot of such a journey.

Find more on Ron Bolt by visiting his website:

I really enjoyed this project and love to work with writers to develop their lyrics into song form. If you are a songwriter who is interested in having music arranged and recorded for your lyrics, please let me know!



  1. Hmmm… how many instruments do you play now? I have something that could use your expertise in this area. I’ve been looking for just the right individual.

    • Just piano, bass, drums, harmonica, and any sound that a keyboard can produce. But I have good connections with other musicians and those can be hired. The process is time-consuming, but rewarding.

      • Awesome! Well… I put up my latest completed song on it’s own page on my blog. I’m looking for a musical arrangement on a piano (so I can learn to play it eventually, myself). Something very similar to Josh Groban, Adele, Sara Maclachlan, etcetera. At least that’s what it sounds like in my head anyway. What do you think?

  2. Nice guitar work by Abram complement Abe’s vocals.

    • …and the lyrics aren’t bad, either 😉

  3. Check out the lyrics and arrangement of Welcome to the Umpqua Valley at

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