Sunday with Mom


Never much cared for Hallmark Card holidays…Coca Cola Christmas, Cadbury Easter…belated Birthdays and middle school graduations…new babies, new puppies, new car…Get Well cards, and My Sympathy for your loss cards are ok I suppose, but if I were feeling sick or recovering from gallbladder surgery, if I had just lost someone near and dear to me I think I’d rather you just drop by and say hello, or bring over some soup or something rather then putting your dollars into some multi-national, non tax paying corporation…emotional manipulation for corporate profit never really sat well with me…especially when I am missing a galbladder or loved one…

I do have a heart. Really. I saw it beating during my last ultra sound…A-fib you know…there it was, on a screen, the Russian doctor pointing out each valve, Aortic – check, Mitral – check, can you please roll to your side and…

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Daylight Saving Sunday Phlegm

It wasn’t so many years back when the thought of social networking made me shudder. I thought if you wanted to share something with someone, you should call or e-mail, or visit them! face to face! The idea that we had to share every detail of our lives every minute of the day with friends, and friends of friends, and corporate sponsors of dog food, high school reunions,  erectile dysfunction medications and more, not to mention the tracking of our private information even with the privacy options offered…well, this whole scenario seemed bizarre to me.  I even had a falling out with a best friend over a social networking discussion we had that turned bad…and we were both right! And we most likely were in agreement!

Well lookie now everyone…blog, twitter, website, Facebook oh my! I’m a Social Network junkie now…how did it come to this? What went wrong?

Simple…I started writing songs again…and I’m a whore.

The music business is not what it was when I was younger and record companies ruled the world. The DIY Punk ethos of the mid 70’s became mainstream with the help of electronic innovation and some really forward looking and savvy musicians who were raised on computers and cell phones. I was a bit behind the curve…ok, a lot behind the curve but I’m playing catchup now. So the point here?

I’m back in the studio to record tracks for a song I call, “1:54 AM“. It talks about the the loneliness of having 537 friends (and counting)…all these friends but we are still by ourselves, in a darkened room, staring at a screen…not terrible social…

I’m thinking,  how do I get this feeling right in the studio…so many ways to screw it up…it’s not meant to be a sad song, and I’m not necessarily railing against what we all do everyday when we log on…its just…is this all there is?  Face time is now an Apple feature on its I Phone. But you can’t touch the face…no tactile sensation here…you can’t possible know what that face just had for dinner by inhaling the traces of the garlic and red wine on the face’s breath…does it matter? I think it does…and I have to somehow convince a listener of it.

From a songs beginnings, a few stray lines of verse in a spiral notebook,  a chord progression, scraps of a chorus…bridge…the end product, what pops out on the other side of the master mix, can be an amazing thing sometimes.  What you thought you had in the beginning bears no resemblance to what you have in the end. How does that happen?  I can’t tell you…all I know is it happened. My acoustic expression somehow turned into Cheap Trick live at Budokan. The tracks we did yesterday are not anywhere near finished but the song took off and where it will land is anyone’s guess. And I like it that way.

We are not supposed to know what lies down the road. If we did we wouldn’t do anything. Just wait for it to happen to us…nope, can’t do that. What we do now changes everything…I mean now, in this moment…not in a month from now…and what we did last year is irrelevant. That moment,  when I was mic’ ed to the gills was all that mattered. And what happened yesterday in the studio was absolutely magical.

Go find some magic today…we lost an hour so you better start right now!

luv to everyone…RV

Sunday Phlemg, ahem…

“Even the Winter has lost its chill

I’m bathed in sunlight and Springs first thrill

But it’s the first of December and it feels all wrong

The day’s too bright and the nights too long”

I may be an “Accident Just’ll have to wait for the CD to find out…but in the meantime, my computer crashed. And with it, all my stuff. No, it wasn’t backed up…not to worry though, Michael Rosen has all my new music safe and sound in the studio…my mind though….that’s another thing…no external hard drive to help with that…

I’m back.

Computer saved from an e-waste disposal site in some port, in a place far far away…but, today I feel as if this whole recording project is mired in quicksand.  I feel stuck. So far the music sounds so good I can’t believe I had any part in its creation. But it’s like having a bag full of candy. I want to share it with everyone and I can’t just yet. Patience a virtue I have yet to acquire I’m afraid…

I wanted to be able to document the flow of the recording process to those who love music, the ones who make what I do possible…but by analyzing this process I’m finding myself face to face with the challenges and hurdles one must go through just to get one damn  day of recording under your belt…a day of recording only to realize you are going to have a whole lot more days like this before you are done.  The prize at the end, a record, a CD, is still so fucking far away on the horizon you start to wonder will it ever happen?

Then you regroup, hit the Stoli and remember why you do this. It’s really fun. You scribble some words on a piece of paper or in a notebook, start bashing out some chords on your guitar, some disjointed notes on a fretboard,  stumble upon a Stevie Nicks song, cringe – hey, here’s that chord I could never find, the funky ass, minor augmented something that Elvis Costello used in Goon Squad…and then it all makes sense. It doesn’t matter if you ever finish the damn CD. Oh sure it’ll be nice to have a plastic, shrink wrapped plastic box with your picture on it to hand out to friends and family…sell after your shows for 10 bucks…but that’s not the motivator…to take something from nothing, a line, a lyric, a scrap of melody or noise, a rhythmic tremor, an emotion, anger, rage, sadness…to take bits of nothing from nothing and turn it into something, well…that’s the payoff.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

Have a good Sunday everyone!