Thursday, April 26, 2012

A Comment From A Reader

Here's a letter from a gentleman named Clint:

You sure are not very careful about what you say about other people.  Especially people you used to consider as "friends"!  Then again, if you take into consideration all of your writings then you don't seem to have a friend in this world.  For one thing, you talk about the drugs that they do.  That is nobody's business but their own.  If you're going to put everything they do out in the street then you had better find a safe place to suck your thumb.  You're lucky that you don't know me or my name cause you would probably say a lot of very bad things about me that doesn't concern you or any of your non-friends.  Then you would have to watch your back and hope I'm in a good enough mood to just write it off cause if I was to end up in a very different frame of mind regarding the things you said about me then you would end up a very broken man.  Trust me.  Roger is a very close friend of mine and the way you talk not just about him, but also about his mother, and putting a drumstick in her eye.  You are a very big piece of shit, asshole.  Now why don't you go on your website and talk shit about the guy that sent you this email.  I'm looking forward to reading your unprofessional comments about your feelings on people like me or Roger.  Please write more so I'll have something to think about.

Your future nightmare!!!

Dear Clint,

You don't know me, and I don't know you either. But let me tell you what I do know: I've never meant to hurt, insult or belittle Roger Mallicott. But this is a FACT: the man needs help. Right now, he's out there somewhere in a lot of pain. He's lost a lot of friends. Most of the people I work with no longer have anything to do with him. I occasionally see his van around town, he's never driving it. I hope he's okay. I have never tried to harm him in any way. In fact, I tried very hard to help him. The reason he asked me to join his band was of my professionalism, because he hoped that I would be able to move the group to a higher level.  But it didn't work out that way. The sad thing is that it's plain to see that he's in a downward spiral. If you're as good a friend of his as you claim to be, you'd agree with me. I saw it within only a short while of getting to know him - and I know why he is where he is. I'm sure you know as well. I do hope that he's able to find help. He genuinely needs it. And while I had very little experience with his mother, I got the impression that she didn't like me, or any of the other guys in the band. In so many words, she gave us a very negative vibe. And Roger told me himself that he wasn't happy to have her around. So I don't really like her all that much. Big deal. It's my opinion and mine only, and like most people I get angry at people who - in my opinion - try to prevent me from achieving my goals.

Now as for me, it's my life - and it's my blog. In fact, I have two of them. And I'll write about whatever I want to write about on either one of them, and while I try not to step on any toes in general, I do not, and will not, sugar-coat anything about anyone, myself included. And I have no problem with calling people on their bullshit. Or their drug use. I'm a professional musician, Clint. And I have little tolerance for people who spend time getting high when they should be practicing. I don't drink, smoke, or do drugs - I know, sounds odd, doesn't it? I'd rather play than get high, drunk, whatever. I was hired to be a bandleader. That means whipping a group of individuals into shape and making them into a tight, cohesive unit. And it didn't happen, likely because the people I tried to lead, did not want to be led. You know the old line, 'you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.' To varying degrees, they didn't want to become what I thought they were capable of being, and I found that very, very disappointing. And I chose to make my disappointment known.

Now as for you. Your letter comes perilously close to making a threat - in fact, you are threatening me. Do you know that threatening someone is a crime? Here's a link that should enlighten you:

Clint, I'm not going to talk smack about you, since you're right, after all - I don't know you and I likely never will. I'm sorry if that disappoints you. And I'm genuinely sorry if I offended you with my honest feelings and opinions about those I work with. I'm glad we had this chance to talk about things. But I've moved on, and so should you. I'm done with Roger, I'm done with this, and I'm done with you. If you decide to continue to harass me, I will send copies of any correspondence of yours to the Port Angeles Police Department.

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Snake

Remember how I mentioned in the last post about how our old pal Jay Reid expressed his dislike to Eddie about how I was hired to play drums for Willis instead of him? In case you forgot, he described me as such:

"That poser who plays in Reno."

Yet in a twist of fate worthy of The Twilight Zone, I logged on to my Facebook page, and there was a friend request waiting for me. And who was it from, you ask?

None other than our old pal Jay Reid.

Jay, if you're reading this, ask yourself this: Why try to be nice to me to my face when you've dissed me when I'm not around? And on top of it, the truth is that you barely know me, and you certainly don't know my wife. It's true that I don't really know that many players here on the Olympic Peninsula, but that's a fault of never really playing here all that much. My connections are in Tacoma, Seattle, Portland, Reno, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Los Angeles.... need I go any further?

You're probably more talented than I am, I'll give you that. But I'm a professional. I'm the first one to arrive, and the last one to leave. I do my job - I don't overplay, or act like a rock star and just expect things to be handed to me. I work my ass off, and I'll just leave it at that. But I will indulge myself a bit, and be an ass for a moment. Here's what you're missing:

I'll post some video when I can get a more stable connection.

Goodbye Jay, you just don't matter any more.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Post #100: A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Car.....

This was just after the rehearsal with Willis on Saturday. Eddie and I were bullshitting with Joy, when I just off-handedly mentioned that if they needed a drummer while I was away, there was one just about three miles that-a-way, as I pointed to the east. Joy wasn't sure who I was talking about, but Eddie did. And what he said next kinda surprised me: that this particular drummer wasn't happy that Eddie had chosen me over him, and didn't think that much of me, referring to me (to Eddie) as 'that poser who plays in Reno'.

Well, if you haven't already figured it out by now, we're talking about our old pal Jay Reid, who briefly played with me in Dirty Joe, and his disinterest in working with the group led to me going back behind the kit to be the singing drummer instead of merely being the singer. To be totally honest with you, Jay's a good drummer, but he's also an asshole with a massive ego, who can't be bothered to put in the work necessary to make a good band work right. Apparently, he didn't think he'd even have to audition for Willis, that he was just going to get the gig because he was Jay Reid.

And Eddie already knew this, which was why I had the gig from the moment I had voiced an interest in it. The audition/rehearsal on Friday was pretty much a formality. Eddie and Jay have been friends and bandmates for thirty years now, but Eddie won't work with him ever again because of Jay's very bad habits, such as the aforementioned lack of punctuality for rehearsals and gigs, and his desire to just play in his mobile home instead. I also learned a few things about Jay that I didn't know before - mostly that he'd had a tumor removed from his brain several years ago, and that had affected him in several physical and psychological ways.

I wanted to feel some sort of sympathy for the guy, but I couldn't. Up until that day, I didn't think that Jay had harbored some sort of ill will towards me before, and had chalked up his departure from Dirty Joe to his known disinterest in driving back and forth from Agnew to Roger's place up at Laird's Corner for rehearsals. He'd even tried to friend me on Facebook, but I wasn't really interested in being friends with him after disrespecting my band like he did.

But enough about him. Eddie and I had a nice conversation yesterday, talking about adding material to the repertoire for me to sing lead on, confirming rehearsals for next weekend, and setting up a regular rehearsal schedule that would be copacetic with my schedule with Steppen Stonz. Eddie wants me to commit full-time to Willis, but understands that I'm not going anywhere without something to fall back on. Which means there would have to be a lot of guaranteed gigs for Willis lined up before I'd even think of switching bands. That said, if some of Mike and Arthur's plans come to fruition in the near future, Steppen Stonz might need a fifth member. And seeing how Eddie was geeking out over a Roland guitar-synth controller John has - playing the saxophone riff to "Careless Whisper" by Wham! over and over again with the synth's saxophone patch - that kind of versatility could come in very handy down in Reno and points elsewhere.....

Oh, and as you may have noted from the title of this post, this is the 100th post of my insane ramblings on this blog. Thank you very much for taking the time to read my brain droppings, and trust me on this - there's a whole fuck of a lot more to come, I ain't dead yet! Here's to the past hundred posts, and to the next hundred!