Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Hail to the King...

So Forty years ago, the King of Rock & Roll passed away. I’ve written about the importance of Elvis in my life for a looooooong time. So this year, the 40th year, I thought I’d write about someone else from Elvis’ orbit that I had that chance to meet. In Memphis there’s a clothing store named Lansky’s. Lansky's was devoted to clothing the hip of Memphis. I being a disciple of Elvis knew of Lansky’s and on my first tour with Buddy Guy, in Memphis, headed to Lansky’s (in the Peabody Hotel) to get some Elvis vibe. I was met by Bernard Lansky, the man who dressed the king. 
 He came up to me immediately and picked out a shirt for me, a purple, velvet shirt. He draped it on me and popped the collar and said “That’s the way Elvis would’ve worn it…” I called Buffy just to tell her how much I spent on that shirt (a Lot!!!) and went back every time to speak with Mr. Lansky just to enjoy his rap and get his Elvis vibe. Mr. Lansky has passed and I still go back every time to embrace the feeling of Elvis, I miss the King as much today as I did in 1977, I’m grateful that that was my first concert. 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Race, Religion, Trump, Making America....Naw I'm just playing':)

 Well today is my birthday. Another jaunt around the sun. I’m getting to the point where I should have it ALL worked out and just coast but you and I both know that ain’t quite how it works! “Mistakes? I’ve made a few…” that’s Sinatra (and Elvis and Sid Vicious, all of who’s versions of My Way will be played at my funeral: spoiler alert). Not to, in any way, minimize our life but I’m starting to look at it as a kind of “circling of the drain” type of existence. Not in a negative way but in a metaphorical way. You’re born and you start circling. It’s coming. But, what is the “drain”? I think it’s Love. I think it’s an awareness of Love. I think the closer we get (and I’m hoping I’m still far away!) I think we start to shed the stuff, realize what’s important, what (and who) has value in our lives and hopefully move towards an awareness of peace and love. 
 I'm grateful tonight for the wife, daughter and family that I have, the friends and co-workers that have fulfilled my life. A post like this is like a GRAMMY speech and if I start naming names, I’ll miss someone and they’ll be like; “What about me?!?!” (or they might not even read it cause maybe they’re more important to me than I am to them!;)) That happens too, by the way. You might be a life raft and they might just be a heavy, wet, drowning body…or vice-versus. The point is, this is my ride, you’ve got yours and they’re all EQUALLY important.

 My faith is Christianity and through that faith I’m taught that we are all made by our creator in His image. I use the masculine in this case but I read it to say WE are ALL made in HIS image which means all of us. So men, ladies, kids, black, white, red, yellow, cream, Christian, Muslim, Jew, Buddhist, etc. that means YOU. The center of my “drain” is Love. As I get closer to it, I’m reminded to accept it more, express it more, embrace it more, spread it more and hopefully embody it more. Today, I’ve been shown a supreme expression of love directed toward me. Both from my family and my friends and I’m humbled. I’ve had so many birthday greetings and well wishes that I literally can’t count them all. That’s a wonderful problem to have! So as I wind down my night, I say “Thank You” and my birthday wish is for me (and for all of us) to learn more love, learn to express it more and be a flashlight that extinguishes that “darkness of hate” from our world. I pray that you experience the same amount of love (or more!) than I’ve been shown today and that we share another trip around the sun in peace and love and harmony. #love

Monday, June 19, 2017

We Plan, God Laughs

 Recently I had the chance to speak to some Middle-School students in a summer guitar program. I’ve done a few things like that and I’m always very nervous. I don’t know why kids scare me more than a room full of (possibly) inebriated adults! They just do.
 Anyway, the one question that I was asked that stuck with me was “Has your career turned out the way you thought it would?” My answer was a quick “NO!” (not “Hell No!” because this was a bunch of kids) It was only after spending some time thinking about it that I would add “Thank God” to that. 
 I haven’t revolutionized music, cured cancer, sold a million copies of my record or played in front of 100,000,000 people at once. I don't have my own bobblehead doll or a reality show about my dog. I don’t have stacks of free guitars and amps and the old bank account looks like it usually does. All that being said, as I’m probably at the halfway point in my life (I hope!) I’ve had a hell of a time! It’s been way better than what I planned and everyday is a new wrinkle that has me saying “Huh! Didn’t see that coming!”
 I have met and made some of the most precious friendships through music, I’ve seen the world, I’ve had experiences that I never imagined. I’ve been blessed to be a son, friend, uncle, nephew, father and a husband. My family (both blood and chosen) is amazing and a true source of peace and contentment and confidence for me. I’ve ridden an elephant, tasted kangaroo, had a king cobra dropped in my lap, survived a few car wrecks, spent the night in a castle, survived the loss of people that I thought I’d never be able to live without, met my heroes, had the chance to live long enough to learn to say “I love you” to people without feeling silly or uncomfortable, had some amazing meals, read some incredible books, heard some fantastic music, seen some beautiful films and admired some incredible works of art. 
 All the while, I’ve been guilty of being focused on trying to bend life to my plan. Spoiler Alert: It don’t work. The harder I’ve tried to go one way, the father I’ve gone in another direction. Looking at it from this point though, I have to say I wouldn’t trade the experiences, the people, hell just the life I’ve had. I wish some of the mistakes I’ve made hadn’t happened, I wish I could’ve held on to some people a little longer but as I said before, in general I’ve had a hell of a time. 

 I’m not done yet (as far as I know!) I’m writing and recording new music, planning tours, working with my band as well as other artists, I’m even getting ready to try and write a screen-play! I guess the point of this “musing” is to say if you’re out there and you feel like life hasn’t been what you thought it should be, take a look at what’s in your life that has real value; the people, the loves, the laughs, the tears, the pain and the joy. That doesn’t mean you have to quit kicking, it just means allow yourself to enjoy what you have. At least that’s what I think.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Hey man, where ya been?!?

I realized today that I haven't blogged or posted anything since the death of Prince last year! It did take the wind out the sails but the truth is I've been so incredibly blessed to be so busy that I just haven't had a chance! Plus too much CNN watching has made me afraid to post anything!!
 Seriously, I'm proud that the record I made with my Foghat brothers is still getting a lot of airplay, that's me playing guitar and singing Upside Of Lonely. I've been playing some shows with Hurricane Ruth and that's been a blast to just lay back and play guitar and listen to a great vocalist and performer. I've been doing my own gigs, of course, that won't ever stop. I recently began a relationship with G&L Guitars as an endorsee and I'm proud to be playing my G&L ASAT! I'm finishing up a new EP that'll be out soon, I'll post more details when it's closer to coming out. We're also planning on finishing the Earl & The Agitators  CD soon. I'm gonna get back to writing more so stay tuned! #loudisgood