Welcome to the home page of Presence Records
and Presence Productions


LATEST NEWS: Rob Carlson & Benefit Street is back on stage! We're kicking off 2019 with Traditionsfest, a benefit concert for WFDU's Traditions radio program at the Hurdy Gurdy Folk Music Club in Fair Lawn, NJ, on Saturday, January 5th. We'll be co-headlining with Christine Lavin and others.

The members of The Benefit Street Band have been busy with side projects. Rob Carlson has a new duet album with Beth Bradley on Inverted Turtle Records, and is working on a new solo album; some tracks are now available! Vin Pasternak's new album, "The Barcelona Note Book," has just been released to excellent reviews. Paul Payton is working on a solo album of instrumental compositions, "somewhere between rock and new age" - more details to come! Also, a new single, a collaboration with Rob, "Catskill Mountain Railroad Train," is now on Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/country-paul/catskill-mt-railroad-train-paul-payton-ft-rob-carlson-vocals. Hope you like it!

FABULOUS DUDES NEWS: guest lead vocalist Bobby Nelson, who sang on "The Fabulous Dudes" and "Wendy," passed away on July 26, 2018. In tribute, "Wendy," which appears on the group's CD with essentially a demo instrumental track behind it, now has a full band and has been uploaded to Soundcloud. Here it here: https://soundcloud.com/country-paul and enjoy Bobby's great rock 'n' roll voice in a new setting!

Finally, there's a holiday "editorial" at the bottom of the page, including a wish for a meaningful season for all! 

Our catalog:


Track list:

1    All I Saw (3:39)
2    Shakin on Down (3:41)
3    Stopwatch (4:06)
4    Your Own Lyin' Eyes (3:27)
5    Angels on the Radio (4:35)
6    Benefit Street & Me (3:22)
7    Me (4:40)
8    The One Called Shenandoah II (4:27)
9    When I Turn to You (4:16)
10    Gardner, Illinois (3:51)
11    Let's Run Away (3:16)
12    Small Town Band (4:02)

13.   Modern Man: Los Geezers del Amor (4:48)


The exciting second album by           ROB CARLSON & THE BENEFIT STREET BAND (Presence PCD3304), is an all-original collection of folk, Americana, pop and rock, with a touch of humor as well. Featuring "Angels on the Radio," "All I Saw," "The One Called Shenandoah," and other in-concert favorites. Hear full songs now and buy downloads or CDs at CD Baby. Also on iTunes, YouTube (search for "Rob Carlson Benefit Street"), Spotify and more.)

EXCLUSIVE BONUS TRACK: the final studio recording by Rob's former group, Modern Man: "Los Geezers del Amor."

More at www.robcarlsonmusic.com

Read Rob's comments on the new album here.

Some unsolicited comments from fans and friends:

"Congratulations again on the CD -- great tunes, fun lyrics, I will enjoy listening again and again."

"Great album. Love it!"

"I've been listening to your music and enjoying. Especially liked 'Benefit Street & Me."

"Congratulations...so much good stuff! "


ROB CARLSON & BENEFIT STREET (What Cheer CD3345, co-produced by Presence and Inverted Turtle Records) is the first album from singer-songwriter Rob Carlson with his new band, sharing its name (and its keyboardist Paul Payton) with his long-ago group of the same name. Hear songs and buy downloads or full CDs at Bandcamp or CD Baby. More about this and other Rob Carlson and Modern Man albums at www.robcarlsonmusic.com.

In the performance photo above,  L-R: Paul Payton, Rob Carlson, Sam Carlson, Vin Pasternak; Fairfield, CT
On the album cover: Vin, Sam, Rob and Paul on Benefit Street, Providence, RI

Track list:

  1. Georgianna
  2. The One Called Shenandoah
  3. Isaac Smiles
  4. Lady of Old Monterey
  5. Time and Time Again
  6. The Bells of St. Stephen's
  7. Seven Years
  8. Walk and Don't Walk
  9. Money Movin' Money Around
  10. Fly (Joachim's Song)
  11. Before They Know You're Gone
  12. Hudson Bridge

BENEFIT STREET/ THE AMERICAN DREAM (Presence PCD3301) was an original music band from New England who, as The American Dream, had a top ten single in Rhode Island in 1967 but the rest of whose music, although unreleased, received extensive airplay on local FM radio. Their music has never before been compiled until this unique collectors' album, which also contains previously-unheard demos and an 8-page historical booklet! Click here for the full track list and to begin the band's story. Hear excerpts and buy downloads or full CDs at CD Baby. The group is in the Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame.


More Rob Carlson & Benefit Street performances to be announced - keep checking in!

For BOOKING, call 203-256-0580 or e-mail booking@RobCarlsonMusic.com


Please "like" Rob Carlson & The Benefit Street Band on Facebook. Thanks!



THE FABULOUS DUDES, "The Kids Would Go Wild!" (Presence PCD3303), presents 14 new original group harmony (doo-wop) tracks that could have been hits had they come out in the '50s and early '60s.   For more information about the group, song titles, etc. click on the group's home page, the stories behind the songs and lyrics, and some of the comments from their friends and fans.
   You can hear and download songs, the entire digital album or buy the CD at Bandcamp and CD Baby

Looking for Paul Payton's voice-overs, including streaming demos? Go to www.paulpayton.com


A Holiday Editorial Comment: It has been a bit difficult to get into the holiday spirit this year. It’s not about a specific religion, as every major faith and culture notes some kind of solstice observation, but the season’s spirituality seems to keep getting more deeply buried. Strident commercialism, polarized politics and partial collapse of the social contract seem to have pushed the holidays’ true meaning into deep background. So many charities and politicians have been begging incessantly to meet artificial deadlines “or the matching fund expires” (really, if they’re a few dollars short of their goal, will the matching donor really walk away?), and every imaginable retailer is having a now-or-never sale followed by yet another one. Black Friday and traffic jams almost subsumed Thanksgiving, once the last uncommercialized holiday, and now the Christmas/Hanukkah/solstice season now seems to be measured by how much one buys or “gifts.” (Note from my late English-teacher mother: “gift” is not a verb.)

It’s hard to remember that there is still good in the world which one can find if one looks for it, and that life doesn’t have to be a zero-sum game. Perhaps our view is colored by friends and family passing, other friends moving, and so on. But my wife decorated our Christmas tree, we lit our menorah, we have great friends here and around the country and world, we try to focus on doing things rather than amassing stuff, and we are doing our best to stay optimistic. Good friends and good adventures go a long way to make that happen. And making what we hope is good music helps it all go down more smoothly! Thank you all.

Best wishes of the season,