This is my favorite time of year. It always has been. Typically, this time of year from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day is the time when my traveling slows down and I get to spend real time with my family. Of course, it’s also the holiday season, so we get to see a lot of the extended family, uncles, aunts, cousins, etc. that we miss through out the year. I love the coolness in the air, the Christmas music in the stores, the lights going up around town, and the food of course! It’s the time of year when I like to look back and consider all of the things in this world that I am grateful for. I can tell you without any embarrassment that I am a rich man. I don’t have a million dollars in the bank and if you saw the truck I drive you might think that my statement about being rich was just some kind of hypothermic insanity. I do have a bunch of “stuff”, but that’s not what I value and consider as the thing that makes me rich. I am rich in family, friends and loved ones.
Don’t get me wrong, I like “stuff”. I could survive with one guitar in my life but I’ve got…a bunch! The thing is, my guitars never miss me, they never say they love me, they don’t worry about me when I’m gone and they show no emotion when I come home. Selfish bitches! (I’m just joking!!)
I am seriously grateful for my beautiful wife Buffy. She’s been my partner for the last 18+ years. What she and I have been through could be a book AND a movie AND a mini-series! I don’t know what I’d do without her, nor do I care to find out. I’m grateful for our daughter Olivia. I am amazed and surprised by her every day. She’s taught me more than almost anyone without even realizing or trying. (I’m grateful that she likes Jimi Hendrix, Buddy Guy and Motorhead in equal measure!) I’m grateful for my family; my mom who is the strongest most amazing person I’ve ever known and one of my heroes. My dad, he is responsible for getting my career going. He passed away in 1997 and didn’t get to see me go solo or hear any of the original music that I created, but I know he’s always with me and I’m grateful for his teaching, his wisdom, his life and his memory. I’m grateful for my brother Shane. We were a small family, it was just Mom and Dad and me and Shane. We moved around a lot when I was young and Shane and I were often the only friends we had. I’m grateful that we’re still friends! (Especially after all the things older brothers do to younger brothers!) I’m grateful for my MF brothers; Keith, Kempf and Chuck. I’ve been so blessed to have not just one but three amazing friends that support each other and make each other laugh and I know that all four of us would “help bury the body, no questions asked”. I’m grateful for Buddy Guy and his belief in me, his friendship and guidance. He gave me a career and taught me what to do with it. I’m grateful for the amazing group of musicians that have played with me, teaching me through the expression of their talent and allowing me to grow as musician by the example of their gifts. My band has a long alumni list so I’m afraid to try and name them all, lest I accidentally forget someone. Just know that there’s not one person that has played with me for a long time or a short time that I don’t feel I learned something from and I am grateful to all of them. I blessed to say that my list of friends is also long and continues to grow. A list too long to try and include here, but suffice it to say that I am ridiculously rich in friends. I am a very rich, grateful and blessed man.