“MEL BROOKS IS JEWISH?!?” – Homer Simpson

Sorry it’s been a while.  I am not consistent in my blogging anymore.  Simpsons quote in the title means it’s a random post, as most of you know.  Got some stuff I should write focused posts about, too…but I’m writing so infrequently that the random thing is beneficial for now.

  1. Did a photo-shoot with my brother, our friend Tim, and Dave’s (I think) cousin-in-law or something like that today.  It’s for Dave’s upcoming solo album with Dave and the Not-So-Daves.  (I love that band name.)  It’s a fun, poppy, rock-based record and it’s coming together really well.  All the parts are recorded and it’s down to just the mixing.  I’ve got a decent mix, but I’m making a few fixes before handing it to Dave.  Being off for Labor Day probably gives me the time to finish it up this week.  I’d thought I was going to be done with it by the end of August, but it looks like we’re going one week into September.  And that’s fine.  It’s a fun project and I’ve had fun doing it.  As I’ve said a few times–it’s some of the best guitar-work of my career.  Can’t wait for everybody to hear it!  For the photo-shoot, I wore a hat and a sport-coat over jeans look. Probably a little more hipster-ish than I’d intended, but so what?  I think it looked nice.
  2. I’ve been doing recording-tests for my next solo release as well.  “Sorry, I Didn’t Mean to Shout” will be all-acoustic (just my guitar and voice) and will be a “career retrospective” piece, covering some songs from all of my releases up to this point, along with four new songs.  It’s particularly aimed at first-time listeners and it will be meant to have the feel of coming to see me at an acoustic set.  You’d think a thing like that would be easy to record, but you’d be wrong.  I’m playing around with different ways of setting up microphones to best represent the guitar/room.  I’ve got a tone in mind and I haven’t quite hit it yet…so I haven’t committed anything to tape just yet either.  Once I know what I’m doing with it, I think it’ll be quick…but getting there is taking some time.  Fortunately I have that luxury.
  3. The article Jim wrote about me last month got me some nice notice from some folks. Got some good emails and my downloads went up for a bit.  Thanks to everybody that read it…or if you haven’t, it’s still readable right here.
  4. I’ve been enjoying watching wrestling in a way I haven’t in a very long time.  Once in a while, WWE gets their shit together and puts out a really great product, and that’s been happening in spades lately.  Just really great to see, as a long time fan.
  5. Gene Wilder died.  That made me really sad–although I knew he’d been sick for a while.  A lot of people think of Willy Wonka first, but my mind immediately went to Mel Brooks (hence the post-title) and to Haunted Honeymoon.  Such a great talent.  I’m one of the people who immediately posted something about him finally being reunited with Gilda Radner on the other side.  In the past couple of days, people have rebuked those of us who said that because Wilder had remarried several years prior to his death.  And I get why that’s important to mention.  Of course my thoughts and prayers are with Karen Boyer as she grieves.  But I’d hope we’re not all so dead inside that we can’t recognize that someone can still love their dead ex-wife, even if they’ve moved on to a new marriage.  (I’ve seen that a lot with people in my life.)  And I’d hope that we can all agree that regardless of what happens on this side of Heaven, when Gene walked through the Pearly Gates, the first people to greet him were Gilda Radner, Peter Boyle, and maybe Marty Feldman if he wasn’t drunk.  There’s no reason that shouldn’t be beautiful, just because he was also lucky enough to find beauty here, too.  Regardless…rest well, Mr. Wilder.
  6. It’s 2 a.m. on September 5, as I’m writing this.  It’s Freddie Mercury’s birthday.  He would have been 70.  Everyone knows what a huge Queen fan I am, and Freddie’s birthday is all the excuse I need to sing loud and high-pitched all damn day.  So if you’re looking for me, I’ll be in my car, doing that.  🙂
  7. My dad went to England and brought me back a shitload of tea.  I’ve been enjoying cup after cup over the past week.  I sometimes forget how much I like tea.  Particularly enjoying the Yorkshire brand, which I hope is easily findable once I run out!
  8. I’ve gotten into the Canadian band The Tragically Hip in the last couple of weeks.  I’ve seen them before, opening for a band or two, but never explored further until they played what was very likely their final show last month, which was streaming online.  The lead singer, Gord Downie, has inoperable brain cancer.  The last show of this tour was probably the last show EVER and they made it easy to view.  Tuned in because it seemed important to do so, and immediately regretted not being more into them over the years.  They make some really gorgeous rock music.  Bought some of their stuff and even though I’m late to the party, I’m glad I’m getting in while Gord is still fighting.  All the best to him and the band.
  9. FYI – My “Things I Meant to Say” record is 10 years old this year. I’d forgotten that.  Go give it a listen.  A lot of it holds up pretty well!  🙂  (Although I do wish I could slightly re-write the part of “Jesus Doesn’t Care” where I say, “I know the Bible in and out…” because that’s bullshit.  Meant well.  Otherwise, good record.)

Well…I’m tired.  So that’s it for now.  Have a happy Labor Day, if you’re off work for it.


Current Listening (when I’m not listening to Queen):

  • Bonnie “Prince” Billy – I See a Darkness
  • Paul McCartney – Pure McCartney
  • Big Star – Nothing Can Hurt Me (Documentary Soundtrack)

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