Busy, busy, busy...aka Kurt Vonnegut.  I do like to keep busy.  Although I have found myself not packing my every moment with work.  Which is nice.  My wife said to me last night, this is the most I have ever been around you in our relationship.  (We've been together 15 years).  Fortunately, she seems to be enjoying me.  I certainly am enjoying her.

Anyway... on to my points, this is my blog and I get to write whatever I want.  Don't like? Don't read it.  What I do find odd is that y'all are actually reading it.  This is my most dynamic page on my site as the content comes stream-of-conscious from my brain to my fingers and I try to do it often.  Although I seem to fail in doing it "often."   I often have great days and sometimes not so great days and I have these (I think) wonderful, relevant things that I want to blog about it.  But, two weeks later when I finally have a moment those moments are barely remembered and seem like a lifetime ago.  And so much of my social media is all biz, I want this to be personally revealing about me.

Here's a few things.  For the past 5 or 6 years I've been doing push-ups three times a week as my "work-out."  It's the perfect exercise.  Keeps your arms, back and stomach strong.  I do it so I don't hurt myself moving gear and so I can do all the manual labor I have to do to fix my house and get my yard work done.  Got it up to 4 sets of 80 per work-out. And then last fall, just before my big loopfest tour, I hurt my shoulder in a weird way that bothered my nexk and back.  Had to stop playing disc golf, had to stop the push-ups.  Of course, strapping a sax to my neck 2 to 3 times a day and living in a van for 2.5 months isn't exactly quality healing time.  Got home pretty messed up.  Spent about a week on my back.  Didn't do anymore than I had to for a month (and that was quite a bit - something like 140 videos editing and posted in that time).  But the house needed stuff done and I put it off as long as possible. But...when you go crawling under a house and fixing stuff at weird angles, un-healed injuries get re-injured.   Right about the time I'm ready to gt back on it, bam - broke a finger, then I tweaked my neck and then I realized I'm just getting older and that crap just hurts now. So after 6 months off, I'm back on the work-outs.  Got it up to 4 sets of 65 already.  I feel better. Posture is better.  Still not raring to go, but I have gotten back on the proverbial horse.

And speaking of proverbial horses - I also joined a band.  The River Barons - we're new group.  Cool guys, fun and loud blues/rock.  I think we're going to do okay.  I've also been doing a little subbing in a zydeco band.  This is fun and I love it.  I'm messing around doing other stuff here and there, but it's mostly loop station stuff outside of that. 

My days of composing have slowed considerably.  I'm doing a lot of collaborating.  Zach, Phil, Brant are my main partners in this endeavor. But I'm always looking for more.    Got about 10 new videos up. Just plugging away doing what I do.  LoopFests are humming.  Label is making all kinds of new inroads although the tasks to get done are always daunting.  And of course there's dealing with the "talent."  I've said it before and I'll say it again, I don't know how some people eat.  Words are one thing, actions are everything.  How often the words and action are in contradiction in the music biz.  It's unprofessional.  It's not good art.  It's not good people skills.  It's not good.  That's not to say I've been a perfect saint or done everything right or well.  But it ain't my first time on the horse.  Nor my last.  Some people just don't get it and they never will.  Some people embrace it and it changes everything in their life.  Some people take what they can get from it.  Some people try. Some people want it but just can't do it or they need a lot of help.   The thing is, there's no one way to do it.  But that doesn't mean right and wrong doesn't exist. 

One of my brothers spent a good portion of his career as a church music minister.  Now if you think the regular music biz is shitty, get into church music.  WOW...it's a whole 'nother level.  I have never seen people get treated so badly.  It kind of makes sense.  Most of the people that hire and fire church musicians are volunteers. And they do things for the "great good" of the church.  But it's way it's done.  And it's generally not done well.  I've seen it at the churches I've gone to.  I've heard stories from other musicians about it.  It's still a professional environment.  They folks should still be treated professionally.  Just because you volunteer on a board doesn't mean you get to crap on the staff.  I'm assuming if you're on the board, you have a job or had a job and it probably was a job where people skills matter.  What am I blithering on about?  I've always wanted to play in the church.  I've done a stint here and there, but would still love to be in "Christian" band getting down with God.  I have realized that this is an area of my life that will probably remained unfulfilled.   I joined an online community to network about church music jobs or band openings.  I'd even do it for free.  All my previous church bands were volunteer.  I don't do THAT for money. (of course some pay would be nice...) Had a contact to do some services out of town, when I was in the area.  Went back and forth and then got a really passive-aggressive message from the "dude" that ended with. "Blah, blah, blah...but whatever. God Bless." I've got a pretty thick skin.  I've got a pretty big ego. So big it's almost invincible from being slighted.  But "dude" hit my button.  He could have been an ass the whole time and I really wouldn't care.  The "...but whatever" thing is a hipster go fuck yourself if I've ever heard one.  Not a fan of that.  If you're going to end anything with "...but whatever" why say anything at all?  Clearly the point was to insult with no response.  A chicken-shit move. And the "God Bless."  Not "God Bless You."  Just a simple look how pious I am. That phrase is often used as an I can dump on you and wash it away; because if you say anything after I said "God Bless" you are the child of the devil.  All I can say about it this.  I see why that "dude" is constantly looking for players.  It's because they won't put up with getting crapped on.  The odd thing is all I said was, I can't come up 80 miles (one-way) for a free show.  I can play if I have a gig in the area on the same day.  I didn't even get a "okay dude, let me know when you're around and I'll if I can squeeze you in somehow."   It was at the moment I realized I'm never going to play in a church.  Not because I don't want to.  It's because it's hateful.  And that is shameful. Stole my joy away. 

A couple months after that and I get the same kind of crap from another real "duder."  And it was about a blog post.  Seriously?  Yep. Seriously.  Stupid stuff.  Wanna know the worst part?  This ain't the first time "duder" pulled that with me.  I might not say things the best. I might not be that sensitive to your issues.  But my actions speak for me. What I do says it all.  I can think of one person where I handled things very badly.  Not to say what I did was wrong, but how I did it was wrong.  I lost a friend when I fired that band mate.  A man who I respected and enjoyed lost all respect for me and I deserved that.  He and I did meet and talk about it after.  But the damage was done.  There was no repairing it.  I think about that a lot.  I have never done that since. I felt like it cost me a little piece of my soul.  Not this last time.   My problem here is I can't believe how mad I still am.  I don't want to be mad.  I don't want to be hung up on this.  It's not worth it.  That's not the kind of man I am.  I keep hoping for it to fade, but when it pops up in my brain my heart goes dark.  I don't like that.  That's not me. 

What do I do? Take a deep breath, shake my head, scold myself for being shallow and move on to something productive. I try and make sure I don't get mixed up with people like that again.  I'm not worried about protecting myself.  The biz is like love.  You have to be willing to get crushed to make it work.  Otherwise you've lost before you've even started.  Now that I've put this down I can say that I do appreciate all of the cool musicians I get to work with.  And since moving to Texas...let me say the quality of people (generally) I'm meeting is way up.  It's been a real pleasure.  That's probably why I was all hot to get back into a band.  I want to play music with guys that are fun to play music with.

Back to the grind.  Lots to do.