Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Who Do You Think You're Benefitting?

Something happened earlier that completely shut off my filter. The thing that usually makes me bite my tongue. And I don't care if people don't want to be my "friend" anymore after reading this.

How in the name of common sense and good consciousness can people be putting on benefit concerts for the gulf??? Nothing sends a message to BP and big corporations everywhere that they can destroy whatever they want and we'll pay for it, letting them off the hook, like a benefit concert. To be very clear- I am sickened by what has happened in the Gulf and we know who the responsible parties are and they are NOT the American people.

Haiti was an event that no man made effort could have prevented. Those people were and are in dire need of help. Same with the flooding in Tennessee and other natural disasters of the like. Raising money to help those people out is honorable and admirable. It is people coming together to help other people after being devastated by an unseen force that is unstoppable.

Big oil, BP in this matter, is a seen force. They can be stopped. They could've prevented this had corrupt politicians not looked the other way for a price. Now we have an ecosystem destroyed. We have an entire coastline of people that are facing even more trouble with hurricane season approaching. Hurricanes are going to pick up this oil and hurl it hundreds of miles inland. More than the Gulf Coast is in trouble.

But the burden isn't on the Americans pockets. It's on BP's. They are responsible. Don't you see this? THEY ARE SOLELY RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS!!! They ignored warnings to save money.

Not one American should pay a dime for this. Donating money to help just tells BP that it's okay what they did. That it could've happened to anyone. Don't do it next time, slugger!

Holding a benefit concert is self serving. It only shows people that put it on and participate in it to be seeking face time in time of crisis. That is also referred to as Exploitation.

Yeah, I'm pissed. If you don't like that, too f***ing bad!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Insomnia: How Media Murdered Media

It's 2:27 am. The baby isn't awake. Why am I?

The glow from the iPhone screen bathes silhouettes in an eerie Anime style. Contrasting the contours of the room. Some items recede into the darkness while the corners are pronounced along with the lines of my hand and forearm that are extended, holding it.

Avatars scroll in a vertical manner, accompanied by 140 character or less stories of what is happening RIGHT NOW. Each one more important than the last.

We are our own news sources...

Avatars don't always match the story. The 20 something young girl making kissy face while taking her own picture appears not only attractive, but as if life will always be great. But her 140 character or less story contradicts that image. The guy standing, basking in the love of the sun with arms outstretched and eyes closed, obviously posing for the cover of the movie he is living in his head, seems to embody the perfect life, where there are no dishes in the sink and the laundry is always done, is stressing over some work related issue. Meanwhile, the black and white, highly contrasted image that evokes the Crow and all things Goth, has just announced an engagement.

All these things seem to clash at 2:36 in the a.m.

SO why am I up? Why is there a vampire outside of my window? Why are we, the chosen few, cursed with thoughts racing so fast that our eyes have to open to avoid a ticket, blessed with sleeplessness.

Friendster conceded to MySpace conceded to Facebook conceded to Twitter. Social networking is the dagger in the heart of traditional media, which can only try to contend with the up to the second update world we have come to live in. Media is murdering media. And it doesn't even know it. News channels and radio stations report events 12 hours or more after the entire world has heard about them. As the world has grown larger and larger it has somehow managed to make itself smaller in an imploding manner.

It's now 3:43 am. The baby just woke up. She said she had to "pee pee". That is breaking news. Heard here first. That is the life of the Stay At Home Rock Star. Yesterday I played for countless people on a large stage and later on a smaller, more intimate setting in two different parts of town. At the smaller venue, I began playing a Dave Matthews Band song, "Crash Into Me", which I learned for a wedding a few days before. The girl behind the bar was in love with the song and said it evoked memories of 8th grade for her. How old am I??? That was followed by the search for food for my wife and followed by the Family Guy Volume 8. Followed by waking up while those in the Twitterverse are just signing off of their perspective channels.

While emptying the little potty I had the thought- "why go to school and study journalism, graduate, search for a position at a news source. Possibly intern and try to become a correspondent and finally move your way up to the news desk as an anchor? Why try to get your own radio show when you can create it instantly online. Just let everyone you know hear about it and slowly build a following. Why? When you can be the next "Shit My Dad Says"? Let's not pretend that we don't all have some parental figure in our lives that says wacky stuff. This guy was just the first to put it out there. As Friendster conceded to Myspace conceded to Facebook conceded to Twitter (which now seems to be getting competition from 4square), "Shit My Dad Says" will be dethroned by a multitude of one uppers from basements and attics across the country, 140 characters or less at a time.

It's 3:54 a.m.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Turn the Page

Bob Seger, 1973...

Just completed a 2000 mile two and a half day journey with a 2 hour show in between. It was awesome. We played out in eastern New Mexico, a stones throw from the Texas border. A town that typically sees country/western, heavy metal and Tejano-Norteno music. The good people of Hobbs had a great time listening to us. We had an awesome time playing for them.

We left Thursday at 2am San Diego time. Got to Hobbs at 6:30 New Mexico time. Watched the Celtics beat the Lakers and found myself unable to go to sleep. Finally fell asleep around midnight-after 23 hours of being awake and 1,000 miles of driving. Woke up at 5am. Headed down to the radio station at 8 or so and did an on air interview at KZOR 94.1fm. It was a lot of fun.

Went back to the hotel and met up with Jerris who stayed up longer than me. We got into the car to head down to the venue to meet with the sound guy. As we got in the car we turned on the radio. It was playing a promo for our show that night. WOAH! How cool was that?!?!?! They played the promo over and over during the day. What a cool feeling it was. They were definitely excited to have us there.

Fast forward to that night. Did an on air radio interview before the show, got up and played to the crowd and had a blast. Got to sleep by midnite, woke up at 3:45 and got back on the road by 4:30 New Mexico time-3:30 San Diego time.

We got back at 5:30 last night and was greeted with an earthquake. Awesome.

Monday, June 7, 2010

5 Weeks

It's been 5 weeks since we got the membership to the Y. I've been going every day, except weekends, on occasion twice. Rewind back to December 27th.

We just got to my brothers house in New Mexico. It had been about 18 months since I had a gym membership at this point. To give a little background about me, I grew up extremely skinny. I was between 6'2" and 6'5" in high school. I weighed in at between 110-140 lbs between Sophomore to Senior years. My sophomore year I started out with a ruptured appendix that was initially diagnosed as an inflamed lymph node and was told I'd be fine. A week and a half later I can't eat, can barely stand up and am constantly throwing up. So we go back to the hospital and a different doctor says "looks like your appendix ruptured, we're gonna have to get it out of there". Now I have a lovely 4 inch scar on the right side of my abdomen from where they cut me open and had drained abscess from my body for 8 days. That is why I was 110 pounds.

So I've always been sensitive about weight. But people are NEVER sensitive towards skinny people and feel it's appropriate to walk up to someone and say "You are so skinny!". Now, to a woman it seems like a compliment. I'm not a woman. They are the worst words I could ever hear.

So fast forward to 2006-07. I have a gym membership that I'm using all the time and getting stronger and bigger. My weight stays around the 225-230 mark. Yes, I've doubled in size since those horrible days in high school. But being as tall as I am, it's a good weight. I'm at a point where I've got some decent size and feeling good about myself. Now fast forward back to the 27th of December, 2009. 18 months without a gym membership and my brother looking at me. He says. You've really gotten thin in the upper body...

What a crushing blow. I have little girls to protect. I can't be thin in the upper body! I'm supposed to be a super hero of sorts.

All of that has changed. 5 weeks back in the gym. Feeling great and getting back to super hero status. It will be interesting to see where I am in a year...

Saturday, June 5, 2010

All Time Favs

Cartoon Edition:
In no particular order, these are the cartoons I absolutely love and wanna watch all the time.

The Maxx
Samurai Jack
Bugs Bunny i.e. Kill da Wabbit
Family Guy
ThunderCats- HOOOOOOOOO!
Afro Samurai
Scooby Doo (pre 1985)
Tom & Jerry (pre 1985)
Woody Woodpecker show to include Chilly Willy
Ren & Stimpy (not the new crap they brought out in 2000 or whenever. The one that had weird voices, the originals with the Stupometron Helmet and Powdered Toast Man saves the pope)
The Ralph Bakshii rotoscope movies (Wizards, Lord of the Rings)

That's all for now...

Feel free to add your favorite in the conmments section


Really, WOW! That's what I was saying last night at the show I produce in downtown San Diego. The Coffeehouse Radio Live at Java Jones East Village saw an incredible array of talent last night. From bilingual crooner Benjamin Myers, Folk/Pop songstress Hilary Michels to guitar picking, soulful singing Aaron Kimball. It was an event that will be talked about by those in attendance for some time.

I love when the talent that I book brings such a diverse style of music to the table. Benjamin Myers is a North County Singer Songwriter that has roots in Spain and sings in both Spanish and English. A smooth delivery over intricate chord progressions and accompanied by his neighbor, Darryl, they really delivered a sound performance in what I consider to be the top room in downtown for acoustic music.

Hilary Michels went next. Usually she sings while playing piano, backed by a full band. But recently she's been inspired to pare it down to a trio where she performs vocals and is backed by a lead and rhythm guitarist- Vince and Colin. It was in incredibly upbeat and fun experience. She is going to be featured on Women of Substance Radio in a few weeks up in Hollywood. Out of the numerous submissions to perform the inaugural event-she was chosen in the top 5!

Closing out the night is one of my favorite people to watch and listen to. Our third North County resident of the evening, Aaron Kimball. As I sat and listened I was reminded of an American version of the UK's rising star, Bobby Long. Intricate yet melodic guitar picking with a voice that is steady with relevant lyrics make Aaron easy to listen to. An interesting stage presence keeps you on your toes for sure.

If you haven't been out to a Friday showcase that I put on, then you need to readjust the way you live (if you have any interest in music). The amount of talent that has come through the doors at 631 9th Ave is tops and the layout of the room make it ideal for this event.

If you're thinking that Live acoustic music by singer/songwriters is just a night of some guy or girl strumming a guitar and moping about life then you are sorely mistaken. This is an eclectic mix of rock, jazz, funk, hip hop, folk and all around toe tappin' ass shakin' good fun.

The next event will be an all girl showcase (except for us) on July 9th. Put it on your calendar! It will feature Alyssa Jacey, Heather Green and Jaylen Grene! Disclaimer: line up subject to change without notice, so don't sue if it happens.


Thursday, June 3, 2010

Dark Stuff

I had four friends commit suicide last year. I think about them daily. It never sits well. Why? Is always the question that comes to my mind.

Shit gets tough in life. That'll never change. But the amount of commitment it takes to take your own life... seems to me that all of that energy could be put to good use.

When the days get short, in the Winter time. I get depressed. I think it's called SADS. That's when I write most of my songs. I take that depressed energy and try to make a positive out of it. Sometimes it's because I didn't eat much that day and my chemical imbalance kicks in. None of this should come as a surprise. I'm an artist.

I try to be positive about stuff but that's not always the case. I have a lot of rage that builds up sometimes. I see stuff going on around me that I have no control over and it gets me furious. But I don't like the idea of getting upset over things I can't control.

I think the worst is people who aren't genuine. People who are your friend if you can do something for them. When you can't do anything for them, they forget you. Or people who don't understand reciprocity or who just flat out miss the point on what it means to be a friend.

Ultimately, in life, we're lucky if we can count our real friends on one hand.

Why did they take their lives? Why did that guy lay his head on the train tracks in Oceanside on Sunday. Why is there a massive double standard in the world that pertains to anything you want it to?

Why do I internalize stuff that depresses me...

"The Crying Indian"

Do any of you remember the commercial from the 80's where the Native American man would walk around, see trash on the ground, and cry? I do. Vividly. Many jokes have been made about it in the years since but now it seems as if there were ever a time for the comeback of "the crying Indian", it would be now.

Seeing photos from this ecological disaster in the Gulf of Mexico is heart breaking. People in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida will forever be effected by this tragedy. Now the people that have been working on the cleanup are getting severely ill and officials from BP are saying not to jump top any conclusions because it may be "food poisoning".

I remember seeing the white sand and crystal blue water of the Florida panhandle. Will my kids ever get to see it? It reminds me of the fact that I learned how to swim in Mission Bay in an area that now posts a sign with a skull and crossbones. Multiply that times a million and you have the gulf.

My friend Eric posed an interesting question to me today. He asked "what if this oil were like an insulant from the magma at the core of the Earth? Now that it's spewing uncontrollably, is it like all the insulation being sucked from your home? Leaving it defenseless against the intense heat of the Earth's core?

Can you imagine a massive void being created in that area and the earth just collapsing in on itself? I wonder if this is something that was ever brought up? I wonder if this was something that was brought up and immediately silenced due to the amount of money oil generates. What the hell do I know? I'm just a stupid singer/songwriter. College drop out. What would I know of the planets make up. The different layers of the earths crust, plate tectonics, geothermal catastrophe possibilities. How do we know it's not like a big game of Jenga- and all the middle pieces have been removed but one. One piece, with the Western Hemisphere teetering upon it above an abyss of molten rock and gas.

What have we gotten ourselves into?

I like to reference Dr. Suess' The Lorax. It is so fitting. Big business destroying the environment for big money. When all is used up, they pack up and go leaving a trail of fractured life and pollution. Getting away with it by greasing palms and high priced lawyers at fancy lunches striking deals for each other, just in time to make their tee times.

The Indian is crying. I don't have anything happy to say. This disaster sucks!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

June... No Gloom

It's already June! Awesome! You know why? Lot's of cool todoings going on 'round these here parts.

Friday night, Java Jones, 631 9th Ave downtown San Diego at 7pm. I have joining me my very talented friends Hilary Michels, Aaron Kimball and Benjamin Myers. It's free and it's all ages.
Saturday from 5-7pm at Hennessey's Gaslamp 708 4th Ave I'll be playing the Happy Hour and it is also free and all ages.
Then I'll be shooting up the road to the 92103 to help raise money to save the boobies! 3834 5th Ave is Java Joe's at Cafe Libertalia. It'll cost you $5 and there will be raffle prizes as well as this awesome lineup: Derek Evans, Rob Deez, Jon Lall, Kelsea Rae Little and a special guest.
Sunday, I'll be playing a private House Party out in San Carlos.

And that's it for San Diego because we'll be heading East on a little Southwest tour that will be awesome!

The following Friday I'll be in the OC playing a very special wedding for two awesome people. I met Mike and Saphoura downtown while playing and they loved me enough to have me at their wedding. I love that!
The 19th will start off at the San Diego County Fair on the Chevy Paddock Stage for the 6th annual Singer/Songwriter Day that showcases the best singer/songwriters in the county. This is my second year in a row playing. Pretty sweet. That kicks off at 10am.
Then I'll be heading south to play the hennessey's happy hour again from 5-7. I love that room. Come find out why ;-)
the next day I will be performing a wedding for another good friend I met through playing in downtown. I'm very excited to be a part of Thai's big day!
The next Friday, the 25th, We'll be back at the SD County Fair on the Plaza Stage headlining that stage from 9:30-11. Get your chocolate flavored bacon and dance your ass-ass off to us on the big stage.
Saturday the 26th, back at the awesome Hennessey's Gaslamp from 5-7pm to make it the happiest two hours ever.
Sunday the 27th will wrap up the month with a fun night of Comedy featuring headliner Chris Clobber and my good friend, the funniest Kurdish man in America, Matin Atrushi.

other shows may get added at any time so keep your eyes peeled.