Playing with mixes

Visions of a Dancer

At night I dreamed of a dancer
Inside her music I found answers
To truth I was looking for

How we start and how we end it
This vision we keep of ourselves
Even when pretending to be somebody else

Vision of a dancer
She opened my eyes in time
I had this idea
I could sing to you tonight

Open my eyes
I won’t stop dancing tonight

There’s no forgetting the first time
The first wish the first kiss and the first place
You met yourself on the road

Vision of a dancer
She opened my eyes in time
I had this idea
I could sing to you tonight

Sing to you tonight
Sing to you tonight

You keep moving

More than likely because I never did like talking about myself.  Awards, accolades, praise, comments, ahh the parade around the art that I was always somewhat defiant about.  My dream was born in a basement.  Not a furnished rehabbed basement with a plasma screen TV and an Xbox, but a cold drippy under-lit dungeon of sorts where one builds on a foundation of isolation and practicing, maybe to someday move “upstairs.”  

These were the days of “Rocky” cinema, where the idea was that accepting the harshness of enduring long hours of training was the way to win the match (choose your metaphorical path).   And remember, Luke learned the ways of the force in swamp, and not in a formalized school.  You endure, right?

The entertainment world had it’s pollution of over-promised talent (fictitious marketing), false starts and quick endings to bright careers.  I never wanted any of it.  I wanted (and still do) to make art.  Music that made peoples lives better.  

And so began a quest that included the guitar, the voice, and the song.  Write a better one.  Then play and sing it better.  Despite the shaky self managing and the constant disappointments of learning by failing, saying the wrong the thing at the wrong time, trying out the already failed strategy, I learned to consistently pick myself up over and over again.   Perhaps the real thrill of the music world for people like me is: packing all your gear into your car at 2:30am at a roadhouse bar where the patrons seem to only care about you playing “freebird” and can’t be bothered from their dart games to hear a song that you wrote, and after being paid $50 you set out on your 2 hour car ride home.  Of course you then you blow $10 of it on 3 day old gas station food because your stomach won’t leave you alone. 

You endure.  You press on.  Sometimes it’s easy to forget why.  And you keep practicing.  You keep writing.  You keep moving.   

Bring back the wind

On a train
Staring out the window
The fields go by so fast like time
I hear your voice in my ear again
Reminding me of the time when
I was so young
All I knew was what the wind carried to me

Bring back the wind
So I hear the words again
Bring back the wind

Back from the globe
After so much time
Stuck in some dirty places
In the lost airports no one wants to see
Will they find the journal I left behind
Will they read it or will they be blind to me?

Bring back the wind
So I hear the words again
Bring back the wind

I arrived just in time
Only to find this journal in an airport
Why are these words so much like mine
Who wrote this about me
I arrived to find I was just in time
to catch the wind

Look for the Secret Mixes

Can you simultaneously be “disappointed” and “happy for” someone or something?

I was asked to “fill in” for both the singer and guitar player in an original band. This was particularly challenging because I’d have to do all the singing and all the guitar soloing.

There were a lot of lyrics to memorize. I could have used an iPad but that’s not my way. If you don’t have the words “in you” then they won’t sound very good coming “from you.”

So, there was that. And then there were all the changes in the music. And the intros. And the endings. And the guitar solos. All for just 2 festival gigs.

After learning all 40 songs, and yes it took me awhile, there was one larger more critical component which was playing with, and in this case, leading the band, despite zero rehearsals.

I lost a word here and there and screwed up a melody line somewhere but for the most part I nailed it (that was the language of the band and how they described it to me…”you nailed it”).
I was proud of the work I put in and I’m not telling you this to brag.

Minutes after the 1st show, backstage, the bandleader chastised me on the 2 or 3 little things without mentioning the 95 things that went well (musicians reading this will know that these were things the audience didn’t even hear, alas, still important).

I nodded along with him and amended to get the last 3% of “commanding it” together. The band…actually grew pissed at him and it turned out that I had to defend him to them.
The reason the band is tight is because someone needs to shoot for that unattainable excellence that we never get to right? I felt bad for him but sometimes someone has to be the bad guy. The boss. The headmaster. Whatever. Shoot for perfection all you want.

I was simultaneously disappointed that he was so callous about it and happy to simply shrug it off while feeling bad for him that he couldn’t just be happy with the unjustifiable amount of time that I had put into the material.

So, my answer is yes. It is possible to paradoxically feel both and decided to swim in one direction.

Whiskey in Tokyo

At a whiskey joint in Tokyo it was made known to the strangers at the bar that I was a musician from the U.S. (not hard to guess where I was from being in that part of the world, but the musician part….well).

The bartender who was also the owner stopped the record player (yes he was playing records) and swapped over to Spotify (just cause he’s got records don’t mean he’s not carrying everything else).
He scrolled to my version of “Peg” and the speakers lit up with Greg Toros bass playing.

Lots of smiles, lots of great sounds coming from the whisky clientele. In short they approved, and after managing to remain there for a few hours the bar tab was picked up for us -It was an expensive and sought after place and the price of the 40 year old aged scotch and whiskeys reflected that in the bill.

My Spotify check last month was for less the 2 dollars but having my music instantly interviewed in a setting like that on the other side of the world was priceless.

While it’s true technology has blown a hole in the financials concerned with copyright, mainly nonexistent unit sales, it’s also true that in the end it doesn’t have to be for the worse: The opportunities lay in the unexpected circumstances that you may not have even dreamed of yet.


My response to the state of war in the world right now

Percussion overload

Derek Hayden on percussion, David Moore on drums, Greg Toro on bass and Bobby Bryan on keys.

Keep the funk going

“Can’t Wait”

The Enders Game Scenario

Those who will have read Enders Game will understand.

Ender doesn’t understand that the game he’s playing isn’t a game until the end of the story.
So…how do we really know what’s going on in the virtual?

It’s quite possible 10,000 listeners are enjoying my Spotify I account but they purposely don’t reflect my numbers.

I once witnessed one of my YouTube videos soar to 6,000 hits (that’s soaring for me) and the next day back down to 500.
I could get no response from YT as to why.
Facebook accounts seem to be deleted on high counts most recently. I wonder what’s going on with that.

The social media platforms have now moved to charging the creators to have their creations viewed, consumed, etc.
So, how do we really know?
It’s possible many more people are watching us then we realize.

Tech seems to want to isolate us in a box so that we spend money (energy) on being seen. The very basic human desire for
connection and intimacy taxed by a machine that carefully levers against the user…to keep you on the system paying for more.

There’s times I thought something wasn’t noticed only to find out someone had actually seen it and was waiting for me with a piece of advice…

The Dead Internet Theory is a valid one, but it doesn’t have to happen.

Remembering Jimmy Buffett

Concert footage with VoiceOver.


Float this is life on a cloud
Why worry about it now

Fingers open and catch nothing
I can’t hold time

Do you recognize me
From another place
Am I familiar to you

Let’s dance on this cloud
Together for awhile


Forgiveness is an open hand
Showing me the things I still don’t understand
In this dream that I had
I was walking
In a new land
You were there with me

The divide

There’s a voice “out there” that would have you believe that we’re more divided than we are.

I think most of us in this country would agree on 13 out of 14 things.  I’m talking basics.
Though, there’s a massive narrative that we’re ultimately polarized and thus somewhat doomed. 

This is mostly media and higher education but it filters down and down into peoples unconsciousness until people speak mistruths daily.  And about almost everything.  

Open discourse, free speech, and honesty will get us there. 

Renegades and Healers

I’ve never seen the conflict between the ruling class and the commoners (everyone else) be more transparent than it is right now.   Here in the states, there in Russia, the Middle East, Canada, you name it.   Dutch farmers, China’s financial implosion, and well….Africa.
There’s a worldwide running narrative of the people against their leaders, some of whom are obeying the real elite, the wealthiest international individuals who can’t be held accountable by any system that they manipulate or control.

Still, there’s hope…
In the bloody history of humankind we’ve always had the same sort of problem in the caste system (with individual greed being the real spiritual dilemma) but the renegades and the healers have always risen from anonymity to bring us forward.
When the time comes those leaders will emerge (Martin Luther King’s last speech).

“We going to fly over everything that we see / when no one knows what happens next we’re going to be renegades and healers”

People will step forward. They always have.

Happening again tonight