Mike Uncorked: Jeff Pettigrew and Arcanum & Lore

Mike Butler

Two things I find very powerful are the written word and the spoken word. I am an advocate for literature and the creation of poetry, stories, etc and one of the reasons I love writing for The Grapevine is to have that outlet to create stories and share them with the Valley.

I met Jeff Pettigrew a while back and within a few minutes of chatting, we discovered our mutual love of the written word and finding ways to communicate with all forms of creative writing. Over the last few months Jeff has taken the initiative to create Arcanum & Lore, a monthly spoken word, poetry, and music YouTube show. This show is filled with community member submissions as well as Jeff’s own writings and it’s a wonderful creation. New episodes for Arcanum & Lore hit the channel on the last day of each month.

Over the past year, so many of us (musicians, spoken word artists, etc.) have found different ways to get our faces, music, and written creations out in the public by whatever means seem easiest. For Arcanum & Lore, Jeff went straight for the online presence. “So far,” he says, “this has been exclusively an online affair, with Facebook being the primary means of getting the word out about Arcanum & Lore. As I get more comfortable with creating each episode of the show, I’m also exploring new ways to market the show. I’m enjoying the process of designing each episode and feel like each one is getting better. I’m definitely learning a lot.”

The audience so far has been purely Facebook and YouTube, but we know how easy it is to spread things through social media outlets. Arcanum & Lore is still in the early stages and it is growing organically. Jeff was active in poetry readings and workshops when he was younger and really enjoyed that interaction and wanted to bring some of that energy to this project. “When I was first starting this show, I reached out to several of those connections. I was inspired by what my friend Rod Carlos Rodriguez was (and still is) doing with his Sun Poet’s Society, but due to Covid, he has taken that weekly gathering online on Facebook on Wednesday evenings. His is a live show hosted by a rotating panel of four hosts which is a great concept and possibly something I’ll look at down the road.”

When asked about how the pandemic effected this creation, Jeff was happy to point out the positives. He mentioned that the pandemic has opened up the path to this kind of project and he doesn’t think he would have done this without the pandemic. Sometimes when we are presented with limitations, it actually provides the precise platform we need.

Now, I know you’re all asking yourselves about how to listen and get involved. Well, that’s easy. If you are looking to submit poetry or music for the show, you can do so at arcanumlore@gmail.com for consideration in future episodes. Jeff is always looking for fresh material. And you can find Arcanum & Lore on Facebook, so tune in and hear the beauty of words and lose yourself in some extraordinary local written work. Many thanks to Jeff Pettigrew for spearheading this project!

Photo courtesy of Jeff Pettigrew.