Saturday, July 31, 2004


Taking care of yourself is so important. Its so true that you should, as the saying goes, "remove the plank from your own eye so you can see clear to remove the speck from someone else's eye."

In particular, lately I've been at odds with the band I play with on Saturday nights in this big nice church. We have all this stuff and its good stuff, although, for our particular personell configuratin on stage, we're not set up to sound good to ourselves. Yes, however, it sounds good in the ears of the people who are on the side of the speakers where the sound man is, but on stage, we have our own special sound system and noone to run it with a sympathetic ear, and on top of that, we have like 15 people on stage... and each of them has specific needs...

Here's the problem... We are opressed by the powers that be, in that we are contrrolled on stage so as not to offend the audience out there off the front of the stage watching us, listening, etc. We're set up to play on electronically triggered drums that emit an electronic analog signal that is reproduced by speakers on stage and in the auditorium, much like an electronic keyboard works but with the sounds of prerecorded drums that are triggered at different levels of intensity depending on how much the electronic trigger is disturbed. Now here the problem is, we can not hear the drums unless we have a nice big fat speaker right near by us, or else we use headphones, which can't give us the feeling of the drums shaking the air and hitting our bodies. Well, this is usually the way they do it in the studio so i shoulnd't complain, but I for one, do not use headphones on stage. This seppartes us from the audience and I think its really bad. So i depend on the sound and acoustics of the air around me. If I'm to be happy, I have several requirements to request of the powers that be in this department. Chances are, I may face opposition. But in order for me to hear, i need a nice big speaker. right under me, and it needs to be mixed in a way in which i can be convined I am having a creative interactive, fun, fullfilling useful experience.

Now, the concensus is that its better to sound good out front than to the actual performers of the music. My problem with that, is that music is a spiritual gift from God, that can be abused and cheapened and ultimately, the life which it is supposed to represent is not present at all in its delivery, causeing people who witness it to be disheartened and hopeless. The solution is for us to make every effort to have a spiritual experience on stage so that once the music reaches the targeted listeners, it is containing the life, as fully intact as possible, which gave birth to it on stage and furthurmore, withing our very souls at that very moment.

When there are sound problems, i have personal problems, altho i make efforts to not let it show. But at this point, I'm making every effort to communicate my needs to the powers that be.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

A Band?

Well as i planned, i started solo and now interest is being generated for my band. In other words, people want me to play with a band. Hmmmm I say... hmmm. I've been through a lot of band experiences but most have been short because i dont like tollerating the limitations. Limitations are fine for me if I have agreed to them before hand, or if i have set the boudaries and outlines themselves. If I were to work wiht other artists as myself, I would have to choose the music, and choose the songs i would head up and set up and lead in my name. The other artists would have to be happy to work with what I give them, and if they are good, they'll like it, because Im good and I understand what its like to need freedom and structure to apply your freedom to. But other musicians who dont understand that, might have insecurities that they won't be aware of until they waste my time. I'm all for auditions and natural gradual assimilation. Also, some players might be able to pick it up from the charts I make. I think I'll make those charts soon. I'll have to make them in a simple format more easily read - I'll not use the number system but I'll use the actual old school chords. My songs dont change keys - I already know what key i sing them in. So I'll have these made primarily for the bass player... and eventually for a keyboardist perhaps. But I'm looking to do a trio sound first and work out the feels for the drummer and bass player for now.

This has to happen right away. I'm doing a number of small things at the moment - trying to get my clothes tailored, and myself looking good... i got my hair trimmed up and I'm tryin' to style it so it's dependable and not ever changing. Well... eventually I'll have to set myself on a style, an attitude, and what not... anything could happen. I'll probably go with some makeup and home made clothes.... sorta goth in a way but my own style... and others in my band can be however they freakin wanna be... as long as they arent too average. they just have to be cool and good hearted and a heart and soul for art and music.

I'm a little tiny bit preoccupied with something right now... not sure how my personal life is changing right now. No I'm not turning gay. That's all I'll say for now.

Some people in the complex I live in are being cool with me lately - hmmmm does it have soemthing to do with my new clean cut look? HAHA. Well I like when poeple are open with me and acting cool with me.

I'm playing 3 more gigs this weekend. When do I get paid? Ah I think I get paid for four gigs .. hmm just thinkin outloud why am i writing this? Brings up a point tho - money IS a part of my life - and so is art and I dont have a dedicated work job - I DO blend the two and it takes a tricky ballance.

It looks like I will be expanding down to Sarasota soon. It's pretty cool I can choose a little bit where I play. i do want to be faithful first of all to my church gig and then to my gig here in town (you know who you are) and to ballance those two.  Then, I wanna use the rest of my time to expand and stay diverse. My buddy Danny has been great about that - he gives me encouragement - not in a condescending way but because he's sharing what he's going through in his own music endeavors as well.

Well I have to get a band together. I guess I'll call up some old friends and see what they're up to... the really good ones... and see what they really wanna do with music - and if what i have to offer is of interest to them. At least I have a firm start with what I'm doing. I dont have to compromise so much thanks to that.

So anyways. I'm at starbucks as usual. I'm gonna browse online some and then head back home.


Making Choices

Well here I still am - in St Petersburg Florida - Downtown... now in a starbucks not far from my place of residence. Lately I've had the priveledge to make choices on how to spend my time. I'm learning to say no sometimes. I'm reminded that my time is mine alone. I dont like playing just for money - I like playing first for the art and maybe second for the money - but there's also the social choices and the environments that give me choices. I'm learning where i belong and where I dont belong. People say they wanna make money - and they wanna play with me - and make money. Well thats fine for some people... in fact i agree I wanna make money too - but to them that means playing really crappy music. I can't do that. I need to always feel sensitive to the person of music. if noone stands up for art and music, It'll be abused and misused like a cheap drug and then become taboo, outcast. It's happened already and I'm tryin to hang on to my own. It's my child. It's what makes me go on and on even after I'm gone. It's my legacy and I'm very protective and passionate about the organism that I produce and cultivate. It does have a mind and life of it's own, just as our own minds have a mind of their own. We dont know always why we feel or think the things we do. We dont know what makes us ask questions, but it can be damaged, quieted, mutated, artificially and chemically altered, institutionaly quieted and formalized and controlled. That's why I make the choices I make. A lot of what I choose to do is in an effort to remain free and to remain potent. I have a love for life and I wanna make mine worthwhile and the standards I set for myself are different that of those around me. It's somewhat of a battle but I'm learning what sacrifices are strategically benificial. I've always liked the idea of living instinctively as if on autopilot. I dont like making choices but to me, that's the bridge and the door to freedom. I believe freedom is gained by those who make sacrifice, those who know the value of freedom and are willing to let go of the encumbrences around and within them in order to attain freedom. The choices I make get me there, or they get me farther away from that freedom.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Getting Established!!!

Finally I have regular work. Now I have no doubt I can support myself right here in GOOD OLE ST PETE!!! I see myself staying here a while and any traveling i do will end up right back here in St Pete. I'm gonna keep my room at the place I'm stayin and I'm gonna just put down roots. I'm so glad I've gotten this far. before i came here, i knew it was the best thing to do and finally I was right... with Robby's help, I got a place to stay of my own. Now, I just am rising to the occassions and keeping up with everything. I'm playing my music here and there and thats about all I do - other than just hang out once in a while. Basically I'm in the middle of everything i love.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

settling in

I woke up today in a daze. Last night I dreamed of an old "girlfriend" that didn't pan out. I dreamed she liked me and was being nice to me and that she was doing her best and was a good person. I guess today i felt sentimental - but strong in a way, not caring about the technicalisties and frustrations of everyday life - i got a few things done, as I drifted numbly through my day. I bought some printer supplies for business cards, CD's for demos. I returned my dsl package, cancled everything that had to do with verizon. I'm hoping to just get a pcmcia wireless card and hook up with 802.11g or whatever cause I'm downtown and can probably get some pretty good connections to the internet somehow. I'm about to look into that. Me and Robbie have to record a demo asap. Tonights a bad night cause I'm running errands and fixing computers most of the day and night. I dont even have time to write any more here.. Peace