ideas

Project:Holiday Cheer and Update on Lies, Gratitude, and Love.

My ex-wife had a few (very few) redeeming qualities. She is a teacher and I can’t tell you how many times we would run to Wal-Mart to buy school supplies, shoes, and tee shirts for a kid who was behind the 8 ball when it came to extra.

The next day the parent/guardian would get a call about the extra pair of flip flops or shorts that we had accidentally received and couldn’t return and wanted to know if the parent would mind if we sent them home with Jr. because she thought they might fit him and we didn’t want them to go to waste.

21557707_10155091637532705_5523920759722578681_n

Santa just rolled into town

It’s about helping someone knowing that someday you might be at the mercy of your fellow man. I have been there, Hell I am there! I found out there are millions of wonderful people in the world. The same ones I complain about constantly.

There is a local Facebook group that I belong to. It’s kind of a buy/sell page… plus. It’s called the Perpetual Bargain Fair. They have ran a project called Holiday Cheer for the past few years.

I get to know the Lopez family. They live in Salinas and Ms. Lopez has recently become unemployed.  She has three kids, ages 7, 12, and a special needs 17 year old. Ya know what she wants? Groceries.

Here is what we do, it’s fairly simple;

I get to know the Lopez family. They live in Salinas and Ms. Lopez has recently become unemployed.  She has three daughters, ages 7, 12, and a special needs 17 year old. Ya know what she wants? Groceries.

Rice-A-Roni

From all of us, to all of you. Merry Christmas!

So I’m going to wrap up a box of Cheerios, a can of sardines, and a box of Rice-A-Roni (the San Francisco Treat) for the 7 year old. No need to thank me kid. It’s the least I can do. And never let it be said that I didn’t do the least I could do.

OK what I’m really going to do is track down an I-Pod from someone who has one in good condition and will give it to me so that I can give it to them. I also have a page set up on Amazon.com with grocery store gift cards, Visa gift cards, Walmart gift cards. Anywhere you can get a sweater and a can of chicken noodle soup. Plus I’ll find out what a Dora is and give the kids something to open that they can’t eat. Then I’ll have somewhere to spend my Christmas.

CLICK HERE FOR THE WISHLIST Plus I’m looking for an IPod

10888811_10204891181657937_4794850596186644956_n

Yeah…I still love them.

They have teamed me up with a wonderful woman named Amy. She’s hopefully helping with clothes since my choices in girls clothes might not be the best, and I have no idea what ‘Dora’ is. Most of my choices would have the Planet of the Apes printed somewhere on it.

In the past people have donated a set of breaks and installation for the car, or a mattress so you don’t have to sleep on the floor. This is the community I live in. Just like the one I moved moved away from. Great people just being great each in their own way.

That’s it. Simple.

The Outlaw Josey Wales lives around here somewhere and so does the guy who pumps his gas. If either of them needed a ride it really wouldn’t be that big of a deal to give them one.

The Outlaw Josey Wales lives around here somewhere and so does the guy who pumps his gas. If either of them needed a ride it really wouldn’t be that big of a deal to give them one. They are both my neighbors and until I hear differently, my friends.

It reminds me of a favorite memory.

yuckysnow1

I’m dreaming of a white Christmas

It’s the middle of winter in Illinois. It’s pissing rain and the Christmas snow is melting and turning black from wood smoke and car exhaust. It’s cold and nasty with a little fog thrown in for good measure.

I came upon a kid, probably 19 or 20 years old who was out of gas along Highway 130. I told him to hop in, and we ran about five miles to the gas station and I got him ten bucks in gas and a ride back to his truck. He put the gas in and came back to pay me and I replied “Pay it forward.” and moved on. I’m not the only person ever to do that BTW. Most folks do that.

10468364_10203346340477873_8796159601140819077_n

That’s the dude who picked me up!

Later that summer I’m opening for some country guy who I didn’t know at a good size concert venue. I finished my set and was heading to the merch table to beg people to buy our album we were promoting at the time. I hear “HEY! DUDE!” being yelled at me from a guy on the other side of the concert fencing. So I go up and say “Hey.”

It was that kid. He told me his girl friend made him come to the Famous Country Guy show and when we came on he said “Hey! That’s the dude who gave me a ride!”

Small world… But I wouldn’t want to paint it.


 

 

I don’t really celebrate Christmas. Maybe I’ll give the cat a can of tuna if I have some but usually it’s just us two.

1917800_1204563992872_3856930_n

My Christmas buddy

If I had any kids I would hope that I could pull off Christmas like my Ma used to. We weren’t loaded but she always had the best Christmas for us. She made awesome stockings with candy and comic books. She got me an A.J. Foyt race car one year and I got a hell of a lot of good out of it. Hot Wheels and of course the obligatory Planet of the Apes toy.

If I can help facilitate even a tenth of what Ma made for us, to the Lopez girls I’m going to have one hell of a nice Christmas. Thanks Ma. Feliz Navidad.


Update on my last post.

I was overwhelmed once again by love and support, questions and caring, by people I know and love and by strangers who dropped me a line or a private message telling me that they were there for me or asking where to get help for themselves. Christ people! My cup runneth over already.

giphy-facebook_s

Would you like to go to coffee? And I need a quart of Quaker State

I’m feeling great. I finished up the boat with Eric AND without falling in the ocean. Only one argument and it was small. What a great experience. I found out I suck as a sailor but I’m pretty good at making new friends and keeping old ones. I did get to drive the boat and Eric did send Sarah my message about ice cream and petting puppies… But I’ve moved on Sarah…Ya snooze ya lose.

I’m now in love with the girl at the gas station off of exit 399C. I’m going to ask her for coffee. If she doesn’t shoot me down immediately, she probably will when I ask her if she can pay.


This is the album we were promoting and this is the song I wrote for the album. This song was inspired by a picture on the wall at a now defunked bar called Daddy Rabbits. My friend Mandy was dancing on the bar in the photo. I’d like to think I helped defunk it a little.

Nobody rips off the Stones like I can. Three chords A/G/D.
“You can even play it on the saxophone”~F. Zappa

 

Advertisements
I can't find work due to my prison tattoo.

I NEED A JOB!… So why does this guy get the offers? Hello! San Francisco!

Mr Cropp was serving a two-year jail term for aggravated robbery when his brother did the facial art using a makeshift needle and fermented food.

He went to Facebook and pled his case. “No one will hire me because I have a tattoo all over my face.” He received 45 offers for work and he’s just waiting on the right one…

I can't find work due to my prison tattoo.

I can’t find work due to my prison tattoo

I’ve been living in California for over a year and since everything cost five-times what it did in the Mid-West, I love it.

I have been hitting all the recruiters who alert me to Graphics jobs. I apply I hear nothing. Yes or no. I don’t even know if these alerts are real.

I replied to my recruiter to one of my daily recruiters today. Phil from Ziprecruiter.com

Hi Phil, I hope you are real. I get your updates.

I have been living in CA for over a year. I have applied many times through Ziprecruiter but never received a single bite. I have never heard back. I’m not even sure the position is real.

I am good at my job. I have freelanced for Disney, Warner Brothers, CNN, I have worked at a newspaper. Talk about deadlines. I’ve always met if not exceeded my client’s expectations.

I can list off abilities all day. I can design your next product, brand it, make a graphic for the container, animate it, and build a website from scratch. Take your ad for the product and design a wrap for your car plus a design for the business card and the billboard.

I could stay in and work pre-press making sure files are up to  par. Then separate it into CMYK and print it in a magazine that I have laid out myself, import the Excel file of addresses and walk to the post office to send them.

While I’m there I can work on a forklift and a coal boiler. I can show your children magic tricks at a professional level, teach you to play a guitar or bass, write and record an album, book a tour, and come back with the cash. I can juggle. Where am I going wrong?

I’m going to  Petco tomorrow and asking them for a job. I’m college educated, 20+ real world years of skills to offer, I’m reliable and dependable and I’m going to be cleaning up Parrot crap. I will give it 100% like I do everything. It’s a shame Petco is going to get one of the finest graphic artists you’ll meet.

I have a bad ass sister also looking for work. One day Fortune 500 Company where she managed hundreds of employees with her hard head, smart mouth, and the ability to get things done, the next day going over job boards. I have to shake my head when I hear of her troubles with work. Some company is going to luck out when they hand Michelle (my sis) a job. Stand back, you’ll only get in her way. I think they have a Pet Smart in Mattoon, IL. I hope they are hiring. Gonna be some lucky Parrots in clean cages.

I’m frustrated Phil.
–Samuel Roan

mark-cropp-facebookSo Mr. Moog, while waiting for the right position to come along. You know; desk job,  secretary with a face tattoo.

Forty Five offers were given to this guy while Forty five people who never held anyone at gunpoint, made the decision not to tattoo their face in prison with a makeshift needle and vegetables as ink. Forty five people who were at a disadvantage because they were wise enough not to do what Mr. Moog did.

Plus Moog hasn’t taken a single one of the offers.


My Dad died a few weeks ago. He wasn’t the man he should have been, an alcoholic with a penchant for going to town for smokes and coming home three weeks later. I think back and I really don’t remember doing much with him.

I played little league on year. I remember going with him to the local parts store and sportsman supply shop in Greenup. He bought me a ball glove way too big (You’ll grow into it) and went home and put 3 in 1 oil all over it and I think we put a ball in it and put it under my mattress. I don’t think he saw any games. I remember calling him when I got on base the one time. Michelle and I used that glove for years during P.E. class. He took us to see King Kong (70’s version) and Jaws at the drive in.

18816215_1166151936828489_2122914391_nI could go on but it hurts a little too much and the guilt is a little heavy and my great support team is 2500 miles away. I couldn’t ask for a better bunch of best friends, the community of Greenup and specifically the kindness of Priscilla Schrock who had a ticket waiting for me within an hour of being told to come home. The Greenup Southern Baptist church who got me back and helped big time with the rent. My family. Michelle and Mom and Jim.

I didn’t tell anyone I was home even though I’m sure they knew. I spent two weeks 24/7 with a sober, funny, and frightened father. Not that he ever showed me he was scared. My old man doesn’t get scared.

I’m an Atheist so I don’t imagine Pa sitting back with his brother and best friend John Roan tossing back Busch beer and telling Navy stories. I also know energy can’t be destroyed. So somewhere the energy that was my father is floating around in the either. I don’t think I ever did much to make him proud. I’m all music and art, he was carburetors and beer.

18838444_1166146326829050_1056582043_oI think those were the best two weeks I ever had. We became close again and of all things nightly, we would watch Frasier, the A-Team, and Miami Vice while smoking cigarettes and telling stories. I never knew my dad was in Italy, Greece, Jamaica… He never spoke about it and wasn’t one to take pictures.

We laughed a lot. I get my vision of absurdity from him. Michelle and I both got our sense of humor from him. I got his curly hair, which was always too long for him. Does that shit matter today? No. It’s just hair and too many wasted years.

If I can ever get my favorite singer Brandi Yagow to sing my version of an old Iron Maiden tune “Wasted Years” I will record it. Mine isn’t heavy, fast or angry. It’s just me missing my dad. I can still hear him telling me to “Turn that shit down!” and ironically I’ll be dedicating one of those tunes to him.

Here is the original. Mine is nothing like this except the words and the chords. Until I get it done it’ll have to do.

If you want to do me a solid, follow and share, and get me a freakin job doing what I do best!

Why does Music Scare the Hell Out Of Our Government?

Victor Jara. Singer, poet, activist

Victor Jara. Singer, poet, activist

In the early 1970’s there was a Chilean teacher, theater director, poet, singer-songwriter, and political activist named Victor Jara (pronounced HAR-a.) He was a leading member of a group of folk musicians who established the Nueva Canción Chilena (New Chilean Song) movement. This led to an uprising of new sounds in popular music during the administration of President Salvador Allende and made Victor Jara a famous singer in Chile.

On September 11th, 1973 a CIA-backed coup d’état brought down the democratic Allende Government.

The Chilean military quickly arrested Victor Jara along with other leftists groups. They took them to the Santiago Stadium and locked them inside.

As the crowd waited Victor Jara, guitar in hand, led the prisoners in song after song to help ease the fear. One of the soldiers recognized Jara. He was taken to the center of the stadium and with the butt of their rifles, the soldiers smashed his hands. Afterward they  said “Let’s hear another song Victor.” And “Play your guitar for us Victor” Then a soldier pulled out a pistol and shot Victor Jara in the head.

After his murder, Jara’s body was displayed at the entrance of Chile Stadium for other prisoners to see.  He was 37. His songs were about love, peace and social injustice. Songs scared his government so much they had him murdered to stop his voice from being heard.

The Clash

The Clash

Please remember Victor Jara,
In the Santiago Stadium,
Es verdad – those Washington Bullets again.
~The Clash


I must have read it a hundred times. Entertainers need to keep their mouths shut. You are to be wound up, enjoyed and put away.

~~Bob Marley had an attempt on his life that was politically motivated.
~~Woody Guthrie wrote this ‘Land is Your Land.’ Look up ALL the verses to this song. It’s about socialism.
~~Springsteen wrote ‘Born in the USA.’ President Reagan used it (without permission) as a song to rile up his crowds. Too bad no one on Reagan’s staff bothered to listen to the lyrics. It is a bleak picture of Reagan’s America.
~~’We Shall Overcome’ was sung by the Civil Rights Marchers in the Sixties.
~~ Pete Seeger was blacklisted for not snitching on his peers in the McCarthy hearings.

Burl Ives. Folk singer, snitch, canary, deep throat, fink, informant, nark, rat, rat fink, informer, snitcher, squealer, stoolie, stool pigeon, talebearer, tattler, tattletale, telltale, whistle-blower and all around general bastard.

Burl Ives. Folk singer, snitch, canary, deep throat, fink, informant, nark, rat, rat fink, informer, snitcher, squealer, stoolie, stool pigeon, talebearer, tattler, tattletale, telltale, whistle-blower and all around general bastard.

Luckily Burl Ives came in and sang like a canary. This is why you see Burl in ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’ and you don’t hear Pete Seegar as the Snowman in ‘Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer’ in fact, you didn’t see him for close to fifteen years. Thanks Burl. I love pissing off of the Burl Ives Bridge any chance I get.
~~James Brown stopped Detroit from rioting after MLK was killed by playing his show live on the radio.
~~Sammy Davis Jr. arguably the most gifted entertainer of all time worked as the first black entertainer in Vegas. After selling out his shows at the Sands he would have to go stay at a hotel across town because the Sands didn’t allow n****rs in their hotel.
~~The CIA has a file on John Lennon.
~~Bob Dylan had something to say…

They all scared the living shit out of their leaders. Music. If we are entertainers why do you care if we protest and join a cause? Because we know something that you know too. You can’t live without music in your life and sometimes that music has a message. It’s been that way since the first caveman beat on a log in 4/4 time.

Around 1982 A waitress from Detroit hopped onstage with thrift store clothes and a piece of pop fluff she called a song. She turned that into  ½ a billion dollars. Madonna had no  million dollar start up. No TV show to make her famous in six weeks. She didn’t have producers fixing her vocals. She negotiated million dollar deals constantly, then she hopped her happy ass on a tour bus and spent years on the road.

She is a self-made millionaire who took her shot and made it. 30 years later she is a Superstar. From Ramen to riches

Trump’s dad gave him a small million dollar loan and a bunch of cronies. But Madonna is the one who should shut up because she’s an entertainer…. SHe doesn’t know what it’s like to be one of us like Trump does.

Anyone here ever been to Detroit? Then you know what I mean.

To quote Madonna “FUCK!”

In physics, string theory is a theoretical framework in which the point-like particles of particle physics are replaced by one-dimensional objects called strings. It describes how these strings propagate through space and interact with each other.

In physics, string theory is a theoretical framework in which the point-like particles of particle physics are replaced by one-dimensional objects called strings. It describes how these strings propagate through space and interact with each other.

I am an American
I have the right to speak, even if it isn’t what you want to hear.
I am an activist. I act on things that are important to me. Your lack of empathy won’t stop me. Your apathy is what I’m counting on.
I am not a jukebox or a toy. I am a skilled entertainer with the broken hearts and scars that go with it.
I am informed. Musicians don’t listen to music after a gig. Talk radio is king or silence. I listen to a lot of news.
I read. I can tell the difference between a fact and an opinion. I don’t need led by the nose.
No, I don’t have to see it your way.
I don’t believe in Alt-truths any more than you do.
I don’t have it any easier than you do.
I have sacrificed to become the entertainer I am. I know what it means to be poor.
I am educated and smart.
I won’t accept lack of compassion as an excuse.
I know shit from Shinola so don’t piss on my President and tell me it’s raining.
….And I can play a bad ass fucking guitar
–S.

Like Share Comment. What do you think? Why does music scare our leaders?

Madonna…. Keep preaching sister. What is this? An entertainer expressing her view? I thought putting a boot in your ass was the American way?

Trumped at My Own Game. A Trolling Gone Very Wrong

What is trolling in social media?

A social media troll, by definition, is someone who creates conflict on sites like Twitter, Facebook and Reddit by posting messages that are particularly controversial or inflammatory with the sole intent of provoking an emotional (read: angry) response from other users.

I was taught to troll by a Master Troller who we’ll call ‘John’. This is not his real name. His real name is Jon.

ed7d63c3fd343f10b22d2c26f9d051800ad902b5a9eb3a564c398273c8ca724bWe troll groups that deserve a trolling. Hate groups mainly. We do it for fun, a hobby, a time waster, make each other laugh, and to try and top the last troll the other guy did. It is a form of cyberbullying, but it’s like cyber bullying the Westboro Baptist Church. That OK. No innocent people are harmed in White Hat Trollling.

John successfully disrupted a group of snooty self-impressed acoustic guitarists back when this was all done on a forum. He taught me to troll with intent. Use my own intellect, talents and Google to make these people miserable while manipulating the group. Give them enough rope and haters will turn on themselves.

I have trolled everything from Anti-LGBT sites to Gene Simmon’s fans. I never had one blow up on me like this…

screenshot-2017-01-13-19-07-10I found a group of Donald Trump fans who were calling Michelle Obama’s MOTHER the worst names you can call a black person while feeling this false sense of pride like Trump himself was watching them. The group was called “The Basket of Deplorables” an obvious play on what Hillary Clinton had called Trump supporters. The group was not even hiding the fact that they were a hate group. Screaming racial epithets at any shade of brown darker than a paper bag, hailing fake news as real and real news as fake. 

lindaThey would ask questions like “Should I be able to fly an American Flag on my property any time I want?” followed by HUNDREDS of “Hell Yeahs” and “Libtards better try and stop me” This is not a debatable group. No discussions under any of the threads, just “Hell Yeah” and “God Bless Donald Trump.” No lie. Not big thinkers but there were 43,000 of them, so they had numbers.

I made the fake Facebook account. DontTred Fred. Disabled, big Elvis fan, Trump supporter. A few image grabs uploaded and memes posted on my page and I was off. I posted fake stories I asked stupid questions and I hit ‘like’ on every redneck, hate spewing post. I was in.

The Best way to troll is to stay just close enough to find their weak spot and jab it. Play along, so to speak.”Obama started ISIS!!!!!”

lil-waynescreechpharm

This group was a cesspool of ugliness and ignorance. I couldn’t take this much stupidity and hate for long. I told John I was outing myself on Friday.

I would tell them all how I made up the stories and how they are assholes and bigots and puppy kickers. I told them I was going to send those racist posts to their places of work. That I had more fake profiles to spy on them in the group. I would point out their hypocrisy and they would all feel like fools and then I would waste their time as I sat back and let the hatred of 43,000 Trump supporters massage my feet and those of my high horse.

That is exactly what I did. John joined the group to send me updates when they tossed me from the group. It was time, Tora, Tora, Tora, I wrote John. DontTred Fred posted my Big Meme explaining how I had made them fools. I posted it with the words “Don’t fuck with the King.”. Then I waited. kirk-cameron

One guy popped up and said “dumbass.”

I replied “lame. Is that the best you got nimrod?”  Goading the Basket of Deplorables group do their best. Come and kill me in my apartment in Terre Haute Indiana.

Then they started coming in.

“Libtard”
“Trump is still the winner”
“Amazing what the left will do”
“Obummer… 

John hopped in to help get the trolling rolling. He started mirroring them, but as a Trump supporter. IN ALLCAPS RUN ON SENTNCES AND MISPELLED WURDS!!!!!1!!

captureWhere was the burst of hate? Could they see my post? I finally told John in a private message that I was confused. Maybe ten people commented and one of them BUSTED JOHN OUT as a fake.

Slowly I came upon the realization that this simple bunch didn’t know I was trolling them. I called them out and they thought it was about someone else. My plan failed due to incoherence on THEIR part. GUYS! GET MAD!  I THINK YOU SUCK AND ARE IDIOTS! Crickets…

I have had my ass handed to me in a debate, I have been caught as a troll, I convinced a death metal band to change their name, but I have never been outwitted by sheer stupidity and obliviousness. AS I WAS TELLING THEM I WAS DOING IT! 

I’m still in the group. Head down. The troll was slain with slow wit and obliviousness. Well played Trump supporters….Well played.

donttreds-liscence-fb

Donttred Fred. The name is a family name. It’s French/Cajun

Someone turned DontTred Fred into the Facebook Police. They disabled my page until I could provide them proof of my identity. No lie. They wanted a copy of my ID. With Photoshop in hand, my Troll came back to life. Reenergized and ready to jump back into the business of fuckery!

You simple bastards got me this time, but DontTred Fred will be back. Don’t fuck with the King.

Hey, you can have a copy of my last album if you click on the button on the side. Hope you enjoy.

It’s a new Year, I miss my friends especially bad. But it is sunny and my window is open. I hear they are getting an ice storm back home. I love you guys. You know who you are.

Like Follow and all that other stuff. Comment. Do Something for God’s sake!

–Sammy

#deplorables # Trumpsupporters #goldenshowers 

Factcheck.org… A Liberal Rag. My Views on the Woefully Uninformed

The title of this post comes from a discussion I had earlier this week. It’s a Trump world where his supporters are somehow emboldened to say what they want no matter how little they have investigated. Where does this false sense of pride in a grown man’s ignorance come from? Why does he feel he can get personal with my life? It is because his mentality has become mainstream. If Trump can grab a woman’s pussy, then by all means psychoanalyze me.

13096280_1589444644679231_7050471204557076594_n

                         Poor Parenting

My choice to move wasn’t so that I could pee with other liberals. It wasn’t because I’m embarrassed where I come from. It was a mixture of many things.

 

I’ve never hidden my depression and at times it became debilitating. It was chink in the armor the man used. The problem was, it removes the question of his character also. He has none. But his leader can find fault with someone suffering from Muscular Dystrophy then he feels like it’s fair game. Well score one for you.

Somehow this man feels superior in his ignorance and child-like name calling and keyboard warrior-like threats of physical violence. ( A sure sign you are winning an argument). He has no idea how petty I am. You never want to mess with a man who possesses graphic artist skills like mine. Not only could I make a picture of him singing “Lime in the Coconut” while dressed as a penis… I could have it seen by thousands of people…Not wise. Kind of like in the music business, never argue with the soundman. He’s holding a serious hand; you better hope he has mercy.

I use my friends to test out new projects. Thank You Doug. You Da Man!


This guy forgot, or maybe never considered that the town I love and the people I see and also love, became a constant reminder of dark days. Not their fault at all. A trifecta of heart breaks leaving me numb to any sort of love in my heart for years. That my one constant, music, had become something I dreaded due to burnout and lack of inspiration. I stub my toe on the ACME Anvil that is in the form of a half-finished album. I just don’t have the words. Here is a demo I have had in the can for two years.

11401050_10205852502930368_1680106006386624437_n

                  This is what I see when I go to a concert.

12792194_10207452675853691_4598845549110269186_o

   These people made me a better musician and have all been great friends.

For 25 years I have been in the smile business. I sell smiles. Here, have one on me. Looks good on you. Have another. I did it with a guitar and some of the most talented and grooviest people in the world. Some people get their smiles from riding a Harley, or mudding in a Jeep. They get it in a sport. They let it loose as a fan. What happens when that smile is missing from your own life? I worried a lot of people over the years and felt the resentment. I decided I could get by, or get going.

 

My cat Milton and I packed in an hour. And as I gassed up the car I said goodbye to the lady at the Casey’s General Store. I hit St. Louis and took a right. I drove as far as I could without drowning. Like the Joad Family, promises of new starts, new chances, high paying work in my field.

I weighed the two options. I decided to leave it all and go. The  adventure of a lifetime. Going with nowhere to land. Scariest and most exhilarating experience I have ever had.

10441432_563939373766236_3445779992320921611_n

                            I’m out of here

I know a few people here that are quickly becoming friends of mine. I opened my windows on Christmas Day, and I drove ten minutes down to the Pacific and watched the Sea Otters playing in the kelp. I’m living simply but I am living again. I have guitars, recording equipment, and blank paper. I’ll be using them all.

Not with a smile but with a brazen grin. Because I’m up to no good.483df5cc296b94a34e329291b0125109

What Was the Best Day of Your Life?

The election has taken its toll on me. I look at people differently. Maybe this simple question will realign how I look at the world.

390690_2343780632576_630058554_n

My 2000th Sound Check….Ugh!

I’m pretty lucky to have had a life of being an entertainer. My job is to make you happy. I’m in the smile business. I’ve always given 100% when it comes to me giving you your money’s worth. I didn’t hit it on the head every time but I sure as hell came into the game with that on my mind.

I picked up my guitar and played it and winked and smiled. I slapped hands, snuck people backstage, told stories, and wrote songs. I juggled; I did magic tricks (I’m a fairly good magician in case you didn’t know) I did it even when there was a party I wanted to go to, or my depression had kept me in bed until I left for the shows. Hiding anxiety and sadness many times so that I wouldn’t let down my band mates or my audience. Some days I hid it better than others, but those are stories for another time.

So let’s think about this. What were the best moments I have known….

My first kiss. I won’t embarrass the young lady that gave it to me. As they said in Stephen King’s “Hearts in Atlantis”; It is the kiss that all other kisses will be measured by.

I was at the Cumberland Co Fair when a girl I knew asked if I wanted to go uptown with her other two friends. I said ‘Sure!” Having a crush on the gal superseded the “Don’t leave the Fairgrounds” instructions that had been laid down by Ma.

3cb9dd7c4449b87759645e740542e92aWe hopped in the back seat and somewhere along that ride she laid a kiss on me that curled my toes. I was so scared. I didn’t give her a feel up or anything, just kept kissing.  I was IN LOVE! I couldn’t sleep for three days. I wasn’t hungry for a week.  It was the last kiss I ever got from her. I’m not sure why? Like it matters. It was perfect for a few minutes.


For my birthday my Mom bought me a boom box. I was about 13-14 probably and was obsessed with music. I listened to the radio constantly. The radio tuner quit working after a few months.

My Dad wasn’t around much and when he finally came home I asked him to fix it. He’s a handy guy. Got it to working in about ten minutes. About a week later it quit dialing again. No telling when the Old Man was going to show back up at home.

Ma got the screwdriver out and took the boom box apart. She fixed it.

14938220_10211416113624679_3024598311309867963_nI guess it was at that moment I realized we were going to be okay without my Dad around. Mom and Michelle and I were going to be OK because we didn’t have to wait around for the old man to reappear when he decided to.  Fuck him. The three of us were a pretty good group of people. Better than the barflies and whores my dad spent most of his time with. We didn’t have much but we never felt unloved. Mom made sure of that and I know sacrificed a lot for us and still does to this day.

I played a lot of gigs in my day. Some with huge arena crowds and some to the bar staff. The ones that stand out were the ones that happened when I was coming up.

My first band Bootleg, were playing a little knife and gun club outside of Greenup, IL called El Patio. I had found two huge bags full of these hollow plastic balls with faces on them. They were like a whiffle ball in size and weight. They were called “Ugly Balls”

832d925da7220111148bb36d5ef3e285Bootleg is pumping out tunes like  “All right Now” and “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting” while dodging  Ugly Balls that were being tossed full speed across the bar. I was playing with my best friends Rod, Doug, Bugsy and George to about 50 people who were having a ball. It was the first time I found out I could make OTHERS happy with my limited knowledge of the guitar.

I have always believed that every night the best band in the world is playing their best show ever. The band changes from night to night. I’m happy to say I feel like I have played in the best band in the world a few nights.

My first big indoor show was opening for the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band in Mattoon, IL. Sold out show and my R&B band Dr Wu was opening the show. That band had a great set that we had honed to a razor’s edge. Pat the sax player always said, “Give this band 45 minutes and we could take on anyone.”

fee9bef7a4073cae14a2db0a60049c2fRight before we were about to go up the ramp to the stage, Doug Evan’s, my best bud from High School and band mate shook my hand. We started playing together knowing two songs. “Wipe Out” and “Paranoid” All that work was paying off with high paying gigs all over the country and then some. Doug’s handshake that night was different. An epiphany that we had surpassed our dreams. The next 45 minutes we tore the stage up with swinging horns, great tunes, pounding drums and classic R&B music blasting out as only a clueless all white rock  band could. A standing ovation for the open band.


I met a gal in San Francisco. We saw a jazz concert featuring Esperanza Spalding. I could have sworn once those lights went down, Esperanza played just for the two of us. Lisa agreed. Amazing feeling.


My main girl Susan came over for my birthday a couple of years ago and made lunch and spent the day just talking stupid stuff. Meeting Susan was one of the best days of my life.


A buddy sat in on bass one night at a show in Greenup. I asked a girl to dance. It was the closest dance I ever had. Silently two people held on for dear life as we danced to Van Morrison’s ‘Into the Mystic’


Hands down though, the best day I ever had in my life was the day my girlfriend and future wife, Shannon told me she loved me. She was painfully shy and quiet and the nerve it had to take to say those words had to be one of the toughest things she ever had to say. It was returned in spades.

57d19a2c7af888af166edd1cde724a91I will always love her even though we aren’t together anymore. Shannon is one of the greatest women on the entire planet. I miss her sometimes at unexpected moments. She loved me without condition. I screwed it up and a lot of self loathing comes along with it. If I had only not been so scared to get help with my depression instead of running from it till it was too late. She’s living a better life than I could have ever given her. She’s remarried to a good man, she has adopted two babies and I have no doubt those kids won the lottery when they came home with Shannon. A mom who knows nothing but love.

I have love for all my friends, some helped me get up when I was broken down I treasure them for it. I do have the best friends.

So there it is.

Tell me about your best day and let’s forget about hating each other for a minute just to relate a story. I’ll protest tomorrow. Today is all about us. We are all on the same side of the fence when it comes to the best day ever.

Below the video is a link my last album. It’s your’s for the taking. I hope you enjoy it.


tiny-monkey-cover untitled-1

You Have the Mark of Cain in your Underwear

I swear on all that is Holy that I have seen the light. It’s a black light though. The kind you don’t want to turn on in a cheap hotel.

I have been disheartened before, but never like this.

As a musician most of my heroes were black. Jimi Hendrix, Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin, Etta James, Sammy Davis Jr., Miles Davis, John Coltrane,  Howling Wolf… I could go on for days. The music you hear today, YOUR favorite song,  came from these people. I have stood onstage playing with the Shirelles, the first black girl group. Sam Moore, the Soul Man himself. Gene Chandler, The Duke of Earle.

miles_davis_by_mariapicasso-d54jonm

Miles Davis

I’m not saying that I don’t have just as many white musical gods. Van Halen, David Gilmour, Bob Dylan, Steve Earle, Lyle Lovett, THE SCORPIONS! They are soulful players and writers.(Ok that’s a stretch for the Scorps but they made me want to play guitar in the first place) You can draw a line from a Black Southern Baptist Revival to your favorite song.

Little Richard invented Rock and Roll. A homosexual black man during the 50’s. Thank him when you turn on your stereo. Thank him twice when the stereo does the same thing to you.


When the first rehearsal came with Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Sam Moore. I shook his hand and told him I couldn’t come up with the words to tell him what an honor it was to be playing behind him. The man popped out classic tune after classic tune. Hold On, I’m Comin’, When Something is wrong with my Baby, I Thank You, Soothe Me, Soul  Sister, Brown Sugar, and yeah, I’m a Soul Man. He has recorded and performed with Springsteen, He has performed at the White House, and He is a National Treasure.  It was like a Catholic getting to have an hour long conversation with the Pope.

I have a tattoo of the Rat Pack on the back of my arm. Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. One night at a Casey IL bar, the local meth head wanted to see my tattoo sleeves. I was happy to show her. When we got to Sammy Davis she asked, and I quote “Why would you put a nigger on your arm?” I rolled down my shirt sleeve and said “Do they still make people like you?”

They do. They were closer than I thought. She looked down on one of the greatest entertainers of our time. What had she done to feel superior? Sammy was missing an eye, she was missing her teeth.

My buddy George always warned any black singer I was recording with about going into Greenup. I told him that was his generation. If I was to walk into the local bars with a black friend I would have laid money that she would be greeted with nothing but kindness. Bullshit. George was right. She would be considered a spook, jungle bunny, nigger, because the pigment in her skin is darker than the yellow hue of the alcoholic at the end of the bar with pickled liver disease. Greenup, IL has a population of about thirty-five-hundred people in it. I used to believe that most people were naturally good people. Hell I used to believe that most of America was good.

I was dumbfounded by a friend who turns out doesn’t like my Girlfriend because she is 1/2 Chinese, a woman, gorgeous & smart. A woman who is unafraid of a misogynistic gun nut who wonders why he can’t get a date? Maybe it’s because you have narrowed it down to only white folks.Then mark out anyone outside of the Cumberland Co. area. Then funnel the ones out who have progressive ideas, then funnel the ones out who will put up with me Tarzan you Jane attitude. Prick.

10801535_10204469688800879_266464568913662442_n

A close friend, loving, sweet, bad-ass, highly educated, model, and I won’t bring her to my local bar for fear of someone embarrassing me in front of my friend. Sucks being a racist. I think she’s single.

I saw a large group of people who sleep like babies, go to church, and somehow can overlook admitted sexual assault, hate, bigotry, removing women’s rights, fear of Blacks and Latinos. Scared of the Muslim religion. Somehow thinking that the migrant workers picking the veggies that they buy at Walmart for pennies are ruining America as they drive through a boarded up downtown business district because they didn’t support the local businesses.

Ever wonder why you get these products so cheap? The people you look down on make them, pick them, and load them on the trucks. If you are dying for the chance to take those jobs for America, I bet they would put you on. You could get a job picking strawberries anytime.

If these minorities have it so great, I ask you; would you trade places with them? No. Their work is too hard and a dollar an hour plus twenty-five cents a basket doesn’t lend itself to weekend trips to Branson.

I have watched interviews about the Presidential Election from both sides. I get it. You care about the economy, about your health care, about your jobs.Understandable, but you also sold out a lot of people in the process.

You bought an absurd idea that a giant wall is going to built around the southern border of the US. Fear, mistrust, self imposed ignorance and lies. My question is; how can you as members of the human race overlook, admitted sexual assault against women, race baiting, anti-intellectualism, fear mongering and hatred? Our President ran on that platform.

Does anyone remember the outrage of a Muslim man making his wife wear a burka? Trump will put a Supreme Court Judge in place and he will figuratively and literally have his hand on your pussy, and there is nothing you can do about it.

If the voting record shows us anything, 50% didn’t care enough to vote; about 25% voted pro sexual predator. Fuck you. You are disgusting. I won’t forgive Brock Turner and I won’t forgive sexual assault from anyone. I have no idea how it has been justified. But it was.

brockturner

Brock Turner. Rapist, elite, and ready for Congress. Brock tells it like it is.

Most Presidents have a 100 day plan. Ideas they want done quickly. For the most part we nod our head and say “Yeah! This is the stuff that didn’t get done the last time! (Not always a reflection on the previous President) This will help and makes us a stronger, better country for it.”  Not that we all agree, but we all agree that we want what is best. So we hope the policies are put in place.

These policies are based on hate and xenophobia. I in no way shape or form want a single one of Trump’s policies to pass. We have stepped back. Women will be fighting again for the rights they once had.

Our Vice-President has put laws in place in his state to discriminate against gays based upon which God you pray to. I’m an atheist; I wouldn’t serve any of you mother fuckers.

He is a climate change denier, and believes the Earth is 6000 years old. This makes him a 6th grade Earth Science Textbook denier as well.3528781_s1_i3

I root for the home team and honestly hope that I will eat crow and swallow my words as Trump finds out a way to give us world peace, stop starvation and cures cancer. I will carve his mug in Mount Rushmore with a spoon all by myself.

1964 Kitty Genovese was stabbed to death in New York City over a period of forty-five minutes.  Thirty-seven people heard her cries for help and some actually saw the stabbing and watched as Genovese crawled around the corner only to have her attacker return to finish the task of stabbing her to death. No one called the police and no one came to her aid. Apathy killed Kitty Genovese. The ability to block out the cries of a dying woman. It’s happening again only this time it’s the world that is being stabbed. We closed our windows and turned up the TV.

xxkitty_genovesex400

1964 Kitty Genovese was stabbed to death in New York City over a period of forty-five minutes.

Sleep well but know when you get up tomorrow you have made someone else’s life harder than it was yesterday. Explain that shit to Saint Peter at the Pearly Gates, explain it to your daughter. I don’t want to hear it. You have the mark of Cain in your underwear. All the Tide© in the world won’t remove this shit.

Apathy, hypocrisy, and heartlessness will destroy America, not an illegal immigrant.


Hey do me a solid and subscribe and like my blog. Even better, let’s talk about it.  I don’t mind debate, and I’ve been known to change my mind from time to time if the correct argument is made. Thanks for reading! It’s Hip To SHARE!