A Remark You Made
There are a few musicians who completely change the way people approach different instruments. They become icons in the music community, and they often become known by one name. "Eddie," to a guitar player, can only mean Eddie Van Halen, who completely freaked out every guitar player in the world when the first Van Halen record came out. Say "Bird" to any sax player and you're talking about Charlie Parker, who completely rewrote the rules on playing bebop in the 50s and 60s. "Miles" to a trumpet player is Miles Davis. "Gadd" to a drummer is Steve Gadd.
For electric bass players, the name is Jaco.
Until Jaco Pastorius came along, the bass player in a band was the guitar player's little brother, who only learned to play bass so he could be in the band. Or it was a serious upright bass player who bought an electric bass for convenience. Sure, there were a few fine electric bass players before Jaco, much like there were some fine basketball players before Michael Jordan.
Jaco could play faster than any bass player on earth. His unbelievable playing on tunes like Donna Lee
and Teen Town
let bass players know that there was a level of playing possible that was previously unimaginable. That fact, in following years, turned his name into a not-so-nice cliche. A bass player who overplays gets a "what's with all the Jaco shit, dude?" from his bandmates.
So, yeah, Jaco could play fast. But what made him so great was that he could play electric bass so beautifully. Like, listening slack-jawed, stunned, staring-at-your-hands, verge-of-tears beauty.
There is a song on Weather Report's album "Heavy Weather" called A Remark You Made
. It is a ballad, written by Joe Zawinul specifically for Jaco. In my opinion, it is one of the most important recordings in American music history. And the reason is because it is so achingly beautiful. When the Idiot Drummer and I drove to Florida
and back last month, that song came on my iPod and we just sat in stunned reverential silence, letting the music wash over us for six respectful minutes. When it ended we looked at each other and simultaneously shook our heads and said, "fucking Jaco." And we are a couple of jaded, cantankerous, musically cynical old motherfuckers.
Jaco went crazy. Literally. He died penniless and homeless by having his head bashed in by a bouncer in a bar in his native Ft. Lauderdale. But years before he was beaten to death, he recorded A Remark You Made
to remind cynical old motherfuckers like me 30 years later that music can flood your soul with an overwhelming surge of beauty and truth. And that is something that cynical old motherfuckers like me need to be reminded of occasionally.
Me and The Idiot Drummer
OK, so the lovely Katherine made a joke about perhaps, maybe I got a blowjob from a guy. Very funny, except it is true. You got me. It's the Idiot Drummer. In fact, here is a picture of us back when we lived together
I remember the last time I moved myself. It was about seven years ago, and me and the ex-wife moved all our shit, just the two of us, about 40 miles down the road from Jupiter, Florida to Delray Beach. It was a long, miserable ordeal. I swore on that day that I would never move myself, nor would I ever agree to help anyone move again. You just get to a certain point in your life where activities like that are completely and totally worth the cost of paying someone else to do it. I am well past that point.
Today, I am helping someone move. In a moment of unbelievably short-sighted weakness, I agreed to do it for a blowjob.
I have already been paid.
I no longer have any motivation.
Tiger Woods, Bungee Jumping and a Surreal Mick Fleetwood Moment
Tiger Woods bungee jumped the other day. Some of the sports talking heads are calling it reckless. Look, he's in New Zealand. They do shit like that there. They invented it. It's not reckless. Have you ever heard of a bungee jumping death?
Of course, it reminds me of the story involving my own experience of being attached to a really long rubber band and jumping from a very high platform.
I was visiting my parents. They lived in Louisville at the time. My best friend from college, who I played in a band with for years, called and said he was in Cincinnati, so I went to see him. He was on tour with a band called The Zoo. The notables in the band were Mick Fleetwood (of Fleetwood Mac, youngsters) and Billy Thorpe, who had one hit a long time ago called "Children of the Sun." Also in the band was Bekka Bramlett, who is often sighted in Nashville, in fact she may live here now. So I drove up and just hung out with them for a few days as they toured up through Ohio.
One evening, at about dinner time, I had my surreal Mick Fleetwood moment. Mind you, Fleetwood Mac was by far the biggest band in the world for years when I was growing up. So on this evening, I was standing on the second floor balcony of a Super 8 Motel and Mick was standing there outside his room in a shirt he hadn't bothered to button and tighty-whitey briefs. That's all he was wearing. And he was telling me that he wanted to get a hot air balloon for his back yard he could just "get in it a float away above all the chaos" whenever the shit hit the fan. What "shit" he was talking about, I'm not sure. While I did spend a few days with the band, I never figured out whether he was serious or just yanking my chain. But I do remember thinking at the time that it was a very surreal moment.
So that night, we go to the club and there is a bungee jumping crane set up. The first thing I thought was, "no fucking way am I going to go up there and jump off that thing." Then the Budweiser girls showed up in their bathing suits, and all of them went straight to the sign-up table to jump. Then Bekka Bramlett and her friend Julieann signed up. So, of course, my macho pride got the best of me and I signed up too.
They took us up in groups of five or six. There were a few people working on the platform, one of them being a really, really, really hot woman. I was in a group that included Billy Thorpe. (Everyone confused him with Billy Squire, and would scream "play 'Stroke Me Stroke Me'" everywhere he went. Really pissed him off.) So Billy Thorpe went before me. They hooked him up to the bungee, and he turned and faced us all. He looked at the hot chick and said, in his brash, Australian accent, "Honey, there's a good chance that I'm about to die, and the last thing I want to see before I die is your tits!" Funny even one-hit wonder old rock stars get requests like that granted. He didn't die, but he was quite happy when he disappeared over the edge.
I was next. The choices were to be attached to a harness around your chest or around your ankles. I chose ankles. I chose to fall off backwards, because I didn't think I could face forward and actually jump. I stood at the edge of the platform, and the guy very calmly said, "I am going to count backward from five, then just go." When he got to one, he gave me a light tap on the chest, not a push, just a tap. As I was falling, I heard a very loud scream. Much to my surprise, it was me. I don't scream on roller coasters or anything like that, it was totally spontaneous.
The best word I can think of for doing that is unnatural. To go up that high and jump into the air goes against every instinct in your consciousness. And you know what else? It hurt. It actually hurt my back. I was sore for a couple of weeks.
I jumped from 150 feet. Tiger Woods jumped from 450 feet. That's just reckless.
Coon Ass Crazy
God I love Cajun music.
I listen to a lot of Cajun and Zydeco music. Those crazy coonasses down there in the swamp have spent centuries developing a completely unique style of music. The grooves are like no other, sort of like if a Jamaican drummer went to study music in France, moved to the swamps of Louisiana, had some crazy accordian player's momma put a voodoo spell on him and filled him with just enough rum to still barely be able to play. Add a crazy-good bass player, then whatever you else you can find around the bayou, like a washboard or Uncle Clifton's sax, and you've got zydeco.
But this is the best thing about Cajun music. There are only two topics they write about.
The first is drinking.
The second is eating.
A Cajun song is an invitation to head down to Layfette or Baton Rouge or New Orleans and eat some gumbo and get liquored up and party down and laissez les bon temp roullez. Either that, or it is a report on how all of that just happened last night.
Rastafarians say that Reggae is not just a style of music, it is a lifestyle and a religion.
I feel the same way about zydeco.
God I love Cajun music.
Nudity and Porn
My daughter is five. When she is here, it is just the two of us. I don't know what it is like in other households, but there is a lot of nudity around here. When you're taking care of a little baby, you can't really take them to another room just to get dressed or use the bathroom or shower. So around the age of five, I have had to make a point to lock the door of the bathroom and get dressed in the other room. Right now, she couldn't care less about me being naked. But age five is around the time people make memories that last a lifetime, and I'm quite sure that "seeing my dad naked" is not a memory that she will cherish as a teen or adult.
Which, of course, leads me to porn. I remember some older girls on a schoolbus (they were probably in 6th grade) passing around a picture of a naked man and giggling over it. Since the mainstream "porn" was Playboy and Penthouse, magazines that just had pictures of naked women, I would imagine that it was one of the only images of a naked man those girls saw their entire lives, until they encountered a real, live naked man.
So I wonder what kind of effect the one-click-away-from-porn world is going to have on kids growing up with the internet. My kid is one click away from an image of not just naked people, but people having all manner of sex imaginable. I'm not worried about it now, but curiosity will get the best of her eventually, and she'll see that stuff.
I have a pretty healthy, unshockable view of sexuality. I don't think it is dirty or wrong or sinful or any of that stuff. I hope that the easy availability of material of a sexual nature does nothing more than "normalize" it a little more. But I can't help but worry about it.
Ahh, to be the father of a little girl.
Nashville is Groaning
I'm guest blogging at Nashville is Talking this weekend. Check it out
The City Paper ran a story today
that the ICON in the Gulch sold all 217 initial-release condos in less than 48 hours. The rumour mill is swirling about the Signature Tower. Since I am one of the few development geeks who keeps up with said rumours, let me continue to spread it, the Signature Tower is going to be upped from 55 stories to 70 stories, making it the tallest residential building on earth, or something like that. (It's a rumour, so just go with it.) Plus with the Viridian, the Ballpark and Rolling Mill Hill and the other smaller residental projects, that's a lot of people.
So people really are moving downtown. I think it's great. Here's what worries me. There seems to be a "build it and they will come" attitude about the amenities that will make up these neighborhoods. For instance, the ICON says they are going to have 25,000 square feet of street level retail. But they don't say what it is going to be. I have a pretty good guess. The Gap. Nine West. Macaroni Grill. Applebee's. Cheesecake Factory.
These are the companies that have the pockets to go into untested markets like this. You're not going to get the crazy stuff, like over in Berry Hill or in the Village. So I think it is going to be pretty generic and corporate. Which, I suppose will be fine for the Garth-loving tourists from Manchester and Jackson and Bossier City.
But I think that Nashville has so much more to offer than another TGI Friday's. I like to compare Music City with Austin. Both are state capitals. Both are University towns. The main difference is that Austin is way cooler than Nashville. Part of it is because the University there, the other UT, has 50,000 students. That's a lot of young blood in town. So there is certain "hip" vibe that goes along with having that many people in that demographic. Austin is young and vibrant and cool.
I think Nashville is at a crossroads, as far as an image. There will always be the "hillbilly central" vibe that was perpetuated for decades by the hicks-in-charge down on Music Row. We are slowly shedding that image, as Tin Roof and Dan McGuiness replace Loretta Lynn's Wax Museum. We are building one of the most kick-ass Symphony Halls on earth. We are standing on the brink of changing from Country Music City, USA to Music City USA.
There's just one problem. Musicians in this town want to get paid. So the whole hip, exciting, diverse live music scene that is ongoing in Austin, where you can walk into any of two dozen bars any night of the week and hear two dozen different kick-ass bands, won't happen here. The youth and enthusiam of Austin leads to people actually forming bands and playing to be part of the scene. But I can tell you, as someone who slugged it out in the music scene in Nashville for years, the attitude is much different here. Musicians here have mortgages and children. As high as the talent level is, that's how high the pay requirement is. People make records here, they don't put together bands for the sake of saying something with thier music. With a few exceptions, the good players won't play in a bar for 50 bucks. That's why, for a city known as Music City, we have a relatively lame live music scene.
And we can't forget about the influence of our main tourists, either. People come here because they love Kenny Chesney and Shania Twain and Trace Adkins. They actually want to see someone playing some old Moe Bandy song at Tootsie's. And country music is one of the two genres that automatically get knee-jerk vitriolic reactions of disgust from large segments of the population (rap being the other). So as long as Music Row pumps out their crap about Watermelon Crawls and Honkey-Tonk-Ba-donk-ee-donks, we are going to have an image problem.
So what are we to do? Hell, I don't know. I just hope that the influx of young people with disposable income downtown somehow creates a vibrant and interesting scene before the Famous Amos Cookie Factory, Hillbilly Barn Dance and Corn Pone Museum takes over everything.i
Breaking News! Pac Man cusses!
Hey Eager Channel 2 News Reporter,
I haven't seen you before. You may be new, you may have worked this market for years, I have no idea. But I gotta say something about last night.
There was a drug ring broken up. One of the cars seized belonged to Adam "Pac Man" Jones. He says he lent it to one of the guys to film a video.
Five minutes of footage of an ambush at Pac Man's house, showing nothing but shots of his shoes, and running his (justified) expletive-filled diatribe at you for ambushing him is bullshit. Total bullshit.
Here's Pac Man's shoes! Listen to Pac Man cuss! He associates with drug dealers! Just listen to him cuss! Well, you can't really, because we beeped it all out, but if it weren't for the beeps, you would know that he is a thug and a criminal because he cusses and doesn't tie his shoes!
Someone call the Pulitzer committee.
Not Fit for Frat
Sentence my 5-year-old daughter said recently that was cute because she is five, but I hope she never has a reason to say at a frat party when she is older:
"I'm a naked hula dancer, dancing and showing her kookie-koo."
Follow-up sentence she said to me, which she is welcome to say at any Frat party when she is older:
"I just tooted."
Masters of Literature
If you see an adverb, kill it.
- Mark Twain
I do not care for adverbs or exclaimation points. Of course, they both have their place. Either can be used here and there and not be offensive. I have often used them on this website. Sometimes they're OK. But over-use of either is just crappy writing. And when they are overused, I hate 'em, hate 'em, hate 'em! I just read a "Strawberry Shortcake" book to my kid for the 20th time!! It's riddled with multiple instances of both on every page!!! I counted 14 exclaimation points on the first five pages!!!!!
"That's really big!" Strawberry exclaimed excitedly.
"Yes it is!!" Huck answered boastfully. bom-chicka-wah-wah . . .
I know its a kid's book, and I should not care. But I have to read it, out loud. Often. Some kids books are beautiful. "Miss Rumphius" is a wonderful book. "Strawberry," well, it's crap. It's just plain bad writing. It's not doing my kid any favors. She doesn't care! I do!! I verbally edit half of it out on the fly!!!
Take a writing class, Strawberry Shortcake book writer! Or get a better editor!!
"Tomorrow, Kurt Vonnegut!" Knucklehead exclaims, breathlessly!!!!!!!
Yes, it can happen to you
My girlfriend is from Dyersburg. Last week's tornado flattened her Aunt and Uncle's house, as well as the houses of several second and third cousins. No one in her family was hurt, but her mom knew several people who were killed. Yesterday, I was caught up in the middle
of the Gallatin tornado. I still don't know if my kid's mom has a house left. Last night, as I was going to bed, the folks on CNN announced a warning of a rotating wall cloud in Alabama, and gave the exact intersection of my kid's grandparents (my ex-in-laws.) I don't know what happened there, either.
I'm thinking the guys who move to Utah and collect guns and wives aren't so nutty after all.
Have a nice day.
How was my day?
Thanks for asking. I thought I'd get an early start to go get my kid from school, because there was a thunderstorm heading up that way, and I didn't want to drive in it. So I got on 65 North and a firetruck passed. Then another. Then another. All the way up 65, emergency vehicles were getting on the interstate and going north. Probably about 20. "Uh oh," I think. "This can't be good."
Did I mention my kid goes to school in Gallatin?
So I'm pulling off on Center Point Road, and there are people pulled over, standing outside their cars, looking up at the sky. I look back and see that there is a tornado. And guess what? It looks like it is heading straight for my kid's school.
At this point, I'm not having a good day.
I'm trying to get through to the school via 411. Calls dropped. Listing not found. Calls dropped. Nine out of 10 calls are failing. I finally get through to her mom. Center Point Rd. has some huge trees blocking it. I am five minutes from school. And there is a big fucking tornado heading right at it.
She answers. I calmly say, "I CAN'T GET THE NUMBER TO THE SCHOOL, THE ROAD IS BLOCKED AND THERE IS A TORNADO HEADING RIGHT AT THEM. CALL THEM AND TELL THEM TO GET THE KIDS SOMEWHERE!"
I try to get over to Long Hollow Pike. I get there. The cops have it blocked off. There are roofs, trees and powerlines everywhere. Again I am five minutes away. Both my routes are blocked. The phone rings. "I got through, the teacher said they're OK, but couldn't talk. I'll try back later."
The only other way I know to get there is all the way up Gallatin Road and come back down Hwy. 109. Twenty-five minutes later, police scream by and close Gallatin Road. I know now that the intersection at Hwy. 109 has been destroyed. I turn around. I notice there is a new map I just bought on the seat beside me. (Idiot.) I go down to New Shackle Island. Traffic is crawling at five miles per hour. Failed call after failed call. I have no idea what became of that twister heading to the school. Trees and power lines strewn across the road. Traffic is crawling. Can't get through to anybody.
I finally get to the school a tortourous hour after I was five minutes away. They didn't have a scratch. But a couple of my kid's classmates are homeless. Their houses were flattened. On the way back, I passed through the path of the storm. Maybe two miles from the school. Major destruction everywhere. Two miles from the school.
How was my day? Pretty good. Kind of stressful in the middle, but it's OK now.
The Poop on Downtown
I am supportive of the movement afoot for people to live in downtown Nashville. Right now, it is urban hipsters buying lofts, but there are plans for several large-scale residental projects downtown including some in the Gulch, the new ballpark complex and the new 800-pound gorilla, the proposed Signature tower. I have seen numbers as high as 10,000 new downtown residents in the next several years.
I think that is great. I think it can only help Nashville continue its quest to turn around the suburban flight of the 60s and 70s. But that's a lot of people. Surely the developers aren't counting on having that many single or childless urban hipsters. Surely there will be a variety of people living there, including families.
So here's a potential problem. We don't have any park space downtown. Where are the children going to play? Where are the dogs going to crap?
I have been given the title
of Not-So-Anonymous Best-Strippers-For-A-Lap-Dance Expert.
I am actually not a lap dance expert. It is mere coincidence that the first post ever here in Knucklehead Land happened to be about a table dance. Since no one ever reads your first 50 or so posts, I am going to repost it.
I don't go to strip clubs often -- I've probably averaged one visit every three or four years over my adult life. I only go if there is a reason, like a bunch of friends are going, you know, peer pressure. The last time I went was several months after I found out about my ex-wife's affair and my impending divorce. I was miserable and lonely, I hadn't been near a woman in forever, and my buddies thought a trip to the Good Time Emporium would cheer me up. We were in Atlanta. We eventually had enough to drink that they decided it was necessary to buy me a table dance. In some places you are allowed to touch the girls without some bouncer throwing you out on your ass. But we were in Georgia and I wasn't familiar with the laws.
So this beautiful naked woman started dancing right in front of me, and I leaned up and said, "I'm not from Atlanta, and I don't know what the rules are here."
She said "You're not allowed to touch me." She continued to dance.
I leaned up again and said "Are you wearing perfume?" She said she was. I said "Can I smell your neck?"
She leaned up and grabbed the back of my head and put my face right up on her neck. I took a deep breath. She smelled like heaven. For that brief moment all my troubles disappeared. It's often the little things you miss about having a woman around.
Of course, I'm sure she went back to the dressing room and said, "Listen up, girls, we've got a sniffer at table 14!"
Just Shut Up, Lady!
Voice Mail Lady,
I am tired of listening to you. It is just voicemail. I know how to use it. We all do. We've all done it lots of times. Why do you have to explain that "you have reached the voicemail of . . ."? I know who I am calling. Why do you have to explain that I need to "press three to hear more options, press seven to hear this again, press one to go off the deep end," and the worst one, "when you are finished recording, you can simply hang up . . ."EVERY SINGLE TIME I call anyone? I know how to use voicemail. I know that I just hang up when I'm done, bitch!
All I want to hear is, "Leave a message" beep
To which I will reply, "Dude, call me back." And hang up.
Why do you have to talk longer than I do? Just shut up.
If you won't shut up, I guess I can just pretend that this is you, talking to me and stealthily flipping me off
The Hottie Who Lets Me See Her Naked has read my crap exactly twice. The first time, she read a story about how I unwittingly got sloppy seconds from a horny schoolteacher
. She told me she was no longer interested in reading. It actually took a little pressure off me in deciding what to write about.
Then I went and opened my big yap about my dildo peom
. She said she would read it. Problem is, she waited a while before she got around to it, and the first thing she was confronted with was a story that included a naked picture of a girl I dated in college
. More than a little miffed, she told me that she is, once again, not interested in reading my crap. And I don't blame her. She said, "Why do you only write about all these other women. Why can't you just write about how I have perfect tits or give fabulous blowjobs?"
Well I could write about those subjects, because they are both true. I could, but I can't. This would turn into one of those sex blogs if I started giving details about, say, what happened yesterday morning. Or yesterday around noon. Or yesterday around 2. Or yesterday around 8:30. I'm not interested in writing about that. And I really doubt that she would truly want me to.
But what struck me was the "give fabulous blowjobs" remark. She does. It is true.
However, I have never met a woman who, if the subject comes up, will not declare that she gives the best blowjobs in the world. Women are very competetive like that. But all they have to go on is feedback from men the do it to. And those men are always going to tell them that they are great, or they risk never getting another one. But do the math. You can't ALL be giving the best blowjobs in the world. It is mathmatically impossible.
So I declare April to be National Improve Your Blowjob Technique Month. There are many films for you to rent or buy that deal with this subject. Just the other day, the Idiot Drummer gave me one of those documentaries as sort of a humorous gift. I believe it was called "Choke on My Chubby." Watch the technique of the professional gals, and try to work it into your own style. And practice, practice, practice. Like any skill, the more you do it, the better you'll become. If you don't currently have anyone readily available to practice on, go to your corner tavern, grocery store or even your house of worship. I'm sure you'll have no touble finding an unattached man who would more than willingly provide his services, usually free of charge, as your practice partner. And if you need objective outside feedback, film your practice sessions and post them on your own blog. That way you'll get lots of outside tips and pointers in your comments.
If everyone participates, we will be much happier as a whole, and our National Productivity will skyrocket. This in turn will bring down the National Debt, allowing us to have socialized healthcare and world peace and free puppies for everybody. So please, do your part.
I'm think May will be Have A Threesome With My Hot Friend From College Month.
Good Morning America
Today's guest producer, Mr. Sensitive.
(I am paraphrasing this opening from memory)
Charles Gibson: Some major storms tore through parts of the midwest and south last night, leaving a path of destruction and killing more than twenty, at least 15 in West Tennessee.
Diane Sawyer: But before we get to that, swimsuit season is rapidly approaching . . .
Bea Arthur. I swear. Bea Arthur.
I used to have a little blurb in the sidebar of this place. I can't tell you what it said. I had to remove it. I'll give you an idea about what it said. "Capitalism only works when you" is verbatim. The sentence was finished by instructing you to put your mo`use over those things that appear on top that are generated by that big se ar ch en/gi/ne company in Northern California and pressing on the button that is on your m-o-u-s-e.
I had it there for a while, then I got an email from that big se/ar/ch en:gi:ne company that generates the things at the top that you can put your mouse over and **c l i-c k** and it will take you places to buy things. I can't tell you what the email said, because most of what it said was that I was saying things that I couldn't say and that if I didn't quit they wouldn't let me put those things up there upon which you press the button on your rodent to go other places to b~u~y stuff any more. The email started like this. I will edit it a little:
While *spying on you with our super computer* we noticed that you are currently displaying **those things that our big company in Cali+fornia generate for you to m a k e``` m o n e y** in a manner that is not compliant with our *Big Brother Tactics*.
It then went into lengthy detail about all the things I couldn't do to bring attention to those things that are up there so that you can c /ick on them and I can get a ^^che ck^^ from that big-company-whose-name-rhymes-with-frugal. And they put me on double-secret probation.
The funny thing was, at the time, my grand total from folks doing to those things with their mouses that I would like them to do more of was a little over $9. Here it is a couple of months later, and I'm up today to $12.78. All time. I figure I'll have them send me a you-know-what that I can cash at the end of the year and I'll buy my kid a Christmas present.
But, I thought for a minute that I can use the option to have them send me my money every month. If they are going to be pissy, I might do that, just so they have to spend 39 cents to send me a 25 cent you-know-what that I can deposit in my bank account every month. Plus all the accounting they'd have to pay for.
I understand that they are trying to prevent c/ick "word-that-rhymes-with- Maude -and-starts-with-an-eff-arr-sound" So I'm not allowed to encourage you to do something with your mo/use on those things at the t-o-p of the page that will get my kid a nicer present at Christmas. But if you do, I would thank you, but I can't.
I'm hoping the Maude reference makes their super-computer ignore this post as a story about Bea Arthur.
Bea Arthur Bea Arthur Bea Arthur Bea Arthur!
I realized that I have no reason to be so secret and anonymous at this blog thing. I own my own business, and I'm not going to fire me over it. I don't talk about abortion or George Bush or Libertarianism, so I'm not going to worry about someone throwing a firebomb at my house. So you are going to have to politely sit through my pictures. Don't you hate when people do that to you? If I happen to be in one or two, so be it.
When I wrote about wanting to piss on the seven wonders of the world
, I remembered that I went to Borobudur in Java. It is on some lists as a forgotten wonder. I really wanted to find a place to piss when we were there, but it was too crowded. You can't tell from the picture, but there were tourists everywhere. But it isn't an official "Wonder" so I don't feel too bad.
This is the view from on top of a mountain in Seward, Alaska. You can see there are two ships in the port.
This is a very haunting sculpture at Ground Zero in Nagasaki.
Party on, dude
I changed a lot during the time of my cruise ship experience. What a stoner that guy up there was.
When you go to Juneau, Alaska for the 50th time, eventully you end up just climbing mountains. At least I did. It's not really climbing, just hiking up and back down. This is me at the top of Mt. Roberts.
Lean Back and Blow!
A lot of cruise ship musicians, especially horn players, are jazz refugees. It's one of the only places that Joe Jazzhead can be paid to play. A lot of them come straight out of college and don't have much "show biz" experience.
We had the 5th Dimension on for a couple of weeks on one the the cruise ships I played on. They brought their keyboard player and drummer, and used the rest of us as the band. There was one sax solo in the whole show. It was four bars in "One Less Bell to Answer."After the first show we did, we were sitting around on our break and the sax player said, "I can't figure out what to play on that solo." I had noticed that he was trying to craft some kind of "jazz statement."
I said, "This is show biz, not jazz. Pick the second highest note that fits, get to it in a hurry, then halfway through lean back as far as you can and still be on the mic, get to the highest note and let it rip for the last two bars." The horn players laughed at me.
Just then, their piano player came in. He said, "Gordon, on that solo, just pick the highest note that fits and lean back and let it rip. This is show biz."
That was the last time the horn guys questioned my show biz wisdom.
I am the little speck over the right shoulder of the guy in the middle. He's dead now.