Friday, November 20, 2015

Quick vacation, Paris attack, Cheetah Chrome, Ocean of Stars in the studio!

Enjoying a brief early Thanksgiving/vacation on the coast with my family before diving headlong into a busy few weeks.

So in case you have been living under a rock, there were multiple terror attacks in Paris, one target was an Eagles of Death Metal concert. As a musician, this hit very close to home. I do not know the band, or their merch person who was killed, or (to my knowledge) anyone in the club. But that could have easily been people I did know, and I do know people who know all involved.

The backlash and outpouring of fear and hatred has all but destroyed what little faith in humanity I still retained. I feel better now, but a few days ago I was hoping we would all be wiped out by an asteroid, the sooner the better. Millions of years of evolution, and an unfortunate chunk of the human populace are STILL little more than shit-flinging primates with iPhones and internet access.

Truly fucking sad. On the bright side I can at least whittle down my "friends" list on FB and not have to wish so many people a happy birthday.

I will continue on the course of empathy and compassion. I will light a candle to dispel some of the darkness. If people choose to blow it out, that is their choice. Much like we are in the Universe, we are on our own. There is no supreme deity that will fix our problems for us, either we will do it ourselves or we won't. And so far signs point to that we will not, and we will go the way of the dinosaurs and it will be our own doing and our own fault. Hopefully nature will start over with dogs next time, because dogs at least aren't assholes.


Ocean of Stars is in the studio recording a single. I wish I could be more excited about it given recent events, as this is the first time I've been in a real studio with music I've written since Ironclad in 2007.

Our friends David Ducharme-Jones is taking great care of us and is a pleasure to work with.

Ric Furley came in and knocked out drums in about 4 takes, and that was only because we were experimenting with the tempos. Derek Rodrigues came in and knocked his parts out in about 2 takes. I started the guitar before he got there, and finished not long after he left. And there is A LOT of guitar.

Ric Furley

David Ducharme-Jones

Derek Rodrigues and Dave



Me, happy

I thank Bleu Edmondson for switching me over to guitar, as after almost a year of constant playing with him, and Ocean of Stars, and Thunderosa, this was the first session I've done on guitar where I didn't feel like I was struggling a little.

The song we are doing is called "Great Divide" and the title is now pretty fitting given the state of the world. I came up with the basic idea in 2003. Worked it out during RPM Challenge 2009. Expanded upon it for RPM 2013. We added it to the set earlier this year. And we will sure as hell play it at the Dirty Dog on Friday Dec 4.

In other news, I will be playing bass for the legendary Cheetah Chrome of the legendary Dead Boys for two shows (New Orleans and Houston) the last weekend of November. That will be awesome. Have little exposure to the Dead Boys, but upon listening to and learning the music, I know I've already heard some to most of it. Green River or Mudhoney covered "Ain't Nothin To Do" and I probably have a few songs on cassette mix tapes from my punk friends when I was in high school.

Awesome to be supporting a legend. Thank you Jason Kottwitz for offering the gigs offhandedly at the Lost Well a few weeks back \m/,  Have had one rehearsal with Jason and the drummer already and it went great.

Heading back to Austin on Sunday for the second rehearsal, then going to Dirty Dog for my good friend JRAB's benefit show. He has injured his shoulder, can't work (he's a drummer and drum tech for King's X), and is dealing with some other shit in his life that has left him in a tight spot. I can barely afford to help myself, but will help friends when I can.

Then the busy week continues with rehearsal with Taking Back Thaxton on Monday eve. That day will be meeting with Ocean of Stars bassist Melanie Martinez to work on the bassline for "Great Divide" so she can walk into the studio and knock it out of the park. Tuesday is final rhx with Cheetah Chrome. Wednesday Bleu Edmondson is in Ft. Worth. Thursday is Thanksgiving. Black Friday will be spent driving to New Orleans with Cheetah Chrome to destroy Sibera that night. Saturday is Fitzgerald's in Houston, haven't played there in 10 years. The following monday I'm with Eric Tessmer Band for his residency at Friends.

Dec 4 poster by yours truly:

First weekend of December is double duty with Ocean of Stars and Thunderosa at Dirty Dog, Adrian Conner in San Angelo at the Deadhorse, then again at the Dirty Dog with Adrian Sunday. Mon Dec 7 I'm back at Friends with Eric Tessmer Band, unless Bleu Edmondson wants to leave town extra early for a run through St. Louis MO, Des Moines IA and Omaha NE.

Busy busy mofo-ing BUSY. Bring it on.

In other news, I finally got my SVT back from the shop. Just in time for a video shoot with Taking Back Thaxton for the song "Romantic Gallows" at Jason Patten's property on the edge of town.

Him and his lady did a bang up job building sets (clearing out a decrepit and detached garage/work room, building a graveyard and some gallows, and setting up for a dream sequence shot). It was goddamned impressive. And the crew he had filming did such a great job on the last (much less complicated) video, that I can't wait to see the results.

Will check back in when I check back in.

In the meantime, don't give into fear. Fear turns you into a fucking asshole, and I'm tired of assholes.

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