Saturday, April 21, 2007

Patience is a virtue

So I finally bought a new car today.

I had no intention of actually buying, but once we got to the dealership and found the exact model we'd wanted AND the color we'd initially liked (a metallic light green), we sat down and negotiated, with no bullshit, the deal. No prep necessary; the car is fully loaded (a jack for my iPod!) and even the little extras I would have put in were already there. Start to finish, from 10 a.m. to about 3:30 when I handed over the key to the '92 Sentra and drove off the lot with the Rav4. I even managed to install my XM radio while we waited for the final papers. The dealership were friendly--not pushy at all--and between them taking care of the financing, executing the insurance and the DMV paperwork, I am a very satisfied customer. They'll call me when the plates arrive and that's the end of that. Even the credit card came in handy to put down the initial money. As soon as we took off, Liz and I were bombing around listening to XTC and The Psychedelic Furs on the radio as we headed off to Whole Foods for a long-overdue lunch. 6 speaker surround sound--I have yet to pop a CD in.

Took the Madiera to Sam Ash afterwards to have them work on the frets. The tech wasn't in, so I have to wait at least another week. Oh well. It could be worse.

Met my cousin Adam for lunch yesterday; great to see him. Absolutely love him--he's a great young man and a pleasure to talk to. Busy, busy, busy at work with our upcoming move and I am thriving on it. Most importantly, got the tickets for this year's Travelling Virus at PNC Arts Center.


Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Speed of days

The constant rains and flood have made getting around a bit more difficult than usual. Having spent a fairly calm weekend, we weren't kicked in the head too badly by the downpour (noreaster, my ass).

While I'm still angered by the firing of Don Imus, I'm glad to see that there are those who have the courage of their convictions to kick back against this public lynching. That's all this was. Again--look at the instigators. Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson. Talk about "coward"--Jackson did not at all address (when asked directly about) "Hymietown", which was, as Meredith Viera pointed out, the exact same situation (actually, worse). So simply put, push back the hypocrites and take back the airwaves. Talk hard! (Ten points to anyone who knows that obscure reference).

Musically, a quiet week. Between my daily job and things at home, this hasn't been a musically enriching stretch. However, I do have some new arrangements for a few older songs that I've been revisiting. The beauty of ownership is that you don't have to keep a song that was (for argument's sake) to be part of your band's reprertoire in that vein--you can mess around and reshape it. There were a number of songs I'd written and demo'd years ago that I felt would be suitable for The Punch Line and for some of my other projects, but now, I have that freedom to look at the songs in a different light.

I will not comment on the Virginia Tech tragedy except to say it is just that--a tragedy of the highest order.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Not to be taken lightly

The last few days of the "Don Imus controversy" has left me completely disgusted. I don't know if I can even articulate what I'm thinking correctly because my anger has skewed my focus. I'll try to keep this short and to the point. I'm just venting.

Look at the instigator behind this whole non-story. Al Sharpton, a shameless opportunist, a bold-faced liar and an absolute racist and race-baiter himself. He, the perpetrator of that impardonable hoax (the Brawley case) is making such an issue over Imus' very typical humor laden remark. Sharpton is a vile human being; a criminal and I think it's time that society and the media take a good, long look at this man. I refuse to call him "Reverend" as there is nothing spiritual or faith-based about him.

The cowards at CBS and NBC left Imus hung out to dry. They backpedal and cower. Who runs your company? You or these special interest groups?

Why is no one planning a counter-protest outside Air America to decry Sharpton's propagandist bullshit program?

Now we're force-fed the obviously-coached/rehearsed "outrage" of the Rutgers basketball team? Is this what they call a delayed reaction; a late shock? Guaranteed, when those women first heard Imus' remark, I'm sure they either said "fuck him" or "who?" and then didn't give it a second thought.

Why do reporters constantly have to interview these insipid liberal Jewish princesses when they KNOW what the answers will be? It's SO sensationalistic.

Why did NO ONE in the media stand up for Imus save for Gregg Hughes, Anthony Cumia and James Norton? Seriously. I am not being funny--these were the ONLY ones who have spoken up and have defended and supported Imus. And they weren't being funny, either. This is no laughing matter.

What happened to our right to make jokes? Are people this fucking hypersensitive? I think not. This is SUCH a farce.

Now let's see who calls me a racist or an anti-Semite or whatever you want to think of. I don't care. Here's the bottom line:

-Imus made a joke. He's said a LOT of heavier things earlier in his career.
-Take a fucking joke and let it go. If you're offended, accept the man's apology and move on. That's what ADULTS do.


I was surprised when I read that Sanctuary was no longer going to be releasing new artists and becoming a "catalog only" label entity. Had me reeling for a while, especially after reading that they were (of course) letting go of a lot of their staff. And I have to wonder where the next Undertones album will be placed.

I have about 10 new songs that are in their embryonic recorded versions. At the rate I'm going, I may actually have an album coming together.

More later; I'm fighting off this latest crud that's been going around.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Stop right there

I realize it's been quite a while since I've been on here. The tide of busy-ness at work never seems to subside. No complaint; believe me. I love what I do and I enjoy ever facet of the job itself; the people are the finest I've ever had the pleasure and good fortune to work with. I'm just physically wiped out! Multi-tasking at such a frenetic pace leaves you winded. Case and point is that I've neglected to go to the gym lately, which I do plan on doing since we're leaving early today.

Ever since I bought the new 12-string, I find my playing is getting back up to par and my singing is richer than it's been in a very long time. I don't know if it's because I've had so much time off from a good portion of the songs (most of the songs from The Punch Line album are not part of my acoustic set--only two or three) and I find the same warmth towards them. They are, after all, a part of me and I don't think I'd be doing this if I didn't still enjoy them--especially in these stripped-down versions.

Aside from work, work, work, life is calm and quiet. I'm sure that as things fall back into routine (once the various major projects I have going on at work subside), I will be back on form as your faithful reporter.

There's no dearth of words for me!