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"Next time you hear an effective and affecting lyrics-first, narrative and nakedly personal songwriter like Billy Manas, just remember that this act of staying out of the way of the lyrics is a musical skill, not a literary one. Props where they are due." -John Burdick  Hudson Valley Almanac 

"Billy Manas has star power."  Woodstock Times

"Billy Manas is a very passionate guy who operates on many levels and all of this finds its way 
into his music." Poughkeepsie Journal

"You could say that Billy Manas gets straight to the point - his no-frills directness takes familiar songs and makes them his own - his locomotive acoustic guitar, exuberant harmonica, and road-worn voice are the touchstone of a seasoned troubadour."  Paul Higgins WKZE

If It’s Not Love, Why Bother? 

Photo by Florian Pérennès on Unsplash

Our first date seemed as if we were off to a whirlwind beginning. We were kissing outside in the parking lot before we even walked into the Japanese restaurant. Even as I was kissing her, though, I knew we were doomed. I always notice that if I am talking to someone of the opposite sex and they’re approximately the right age, not married and breathing — I’m going to broach the subject of going out on a date. Inevitably, I will begin to contemplate the level of excitement…

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Pariahs In The World Of Internet Dating 

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

A few months back, I gained enough amnesia from my last experience to try it again. It had been months since I had been out on a date. Not that I was lamenting this fact — it had been a busy summer with a lot of winery gigs and writing and hustling to get my book proposal up to snuff for my agent — but I was missing the excitement of first kisses and frivolous texting.

I decided to make my profile description as snarky and sapiosexual as I possibly could. My hope was…

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Why It Took So Long To Leave 

Photo by Caroline Hernandez on Unsplash

Tonight, I am going out on a date for the first time in months. I gave up entirely on OK Cupid after the last round of dates I netted from that effort were all duds. This date happened pretty organically, so I am hoping that that’s a good sign. The phone calls that have occurred leading up to that inevitable plate of sashimi have been the garden variety “so what brings you here so late in the game, looking for love and hoping for the best?” This sort of conversation…

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Maybe It’s Never Anyone’s Fault 

Photo by Trym Nilsen on Unsplash

I don’t usually have a lot of time for quiet thought — my life has become a maelstrom of coffee swilling, bill paying, pitching articles, child visitation, truck driving, winery gigs, pep talks with my agent and grocery shopping. It’s kind of a nutty life, but someone’s got to live it. Yesterday was Thanksgiving , and because of that, there was quiet time. I found myself cleaning my toaster oven — not because I’m the kind of guy that would do something like that — but because…

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I tend to be a positive person. 

I tend to be a positive person. What we learned very recently — especially with the election of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — is that ANYTHING is possible.

A Street Brawl With My Monkey Mind 

Photo by David Clode on Unsplash

It was a tough night of tossing and turning and strange dreams. My literary agent has been working diligently to find me a publisher for my book and we are getting close. There is going to be a meeting later this morning at one publisher where they are going to decide one way or the other. That is what is making it so difficult for me to concentrate on virtually anything at all. Usually I wake up at 6:30 and do something productive, to get my day off to a good start. Today…

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Anatomy Of A Faulty Lover 

Photo by Warren Wong

Whatever the opposite of the word gregarious is — which I am having a hard time thinking of at this moment — that’s what my oldest brother was when we were growing up. He was dull and anti-social, but being the oldest and my father’s namesake, my parents would generally give him the spotlight at the dinner table as he tried to relate an anecdote from his day. I’m telling you, it was painful. The guy had no sense of comic timing and no command of language, so it might’ve looked to an…

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10 Compelling Reasons Why Our Next President Should Be A Single Mom 

Photo by Sai De Silva on Unsplash

Now that the midterm elections have come and gone, radio, TV and social media will undoubtedly start to light up with talk of Presidential hopefuls for 2020. Hilary? Nah. Bernie? I don’t know. When I start to think about the great Presidents throughout history, I think about Lincoln, FDR and Kennedy — these were guys with a set of talents and characteristics that made them perfect for, what is likely, the most challenging job in the world. These are exactly the same talents…

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When We Walk Away From Those We Love 

Photo by Patryk Sobczak on Unsplash

On this day six years ago, I was an inexperienced and apprehensive commercial truck driver delivering freight near Syracuse, NY when my phone rang. It was my girlfriend very calmly but with a noticeably nervous inflection in her tone, telling me that our daughter — who we had already decided to call Gloria — was ready to show her face to the world. It was, like many delivery stories, exciting and stressful.

The first hurdle that needed to be overcome was that I was four…

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