Well...I just realized I haven't posted anything since last week.
Thought my faithful BB's Blog readers might want a BB & JTC update.
Writer's rounds / Songwriting:
I've had a couple rounds over the past two weeks. One at the Bluebird on 1/9 and the other at the French Quarter on 1/14 with Tre Burnham and Ricky / Micol from BMT. Both went really well. We had a blast. And, I debuted two new songs at each. One is called "I Don't Love You Anymore"... it is a sad song that made people cry. Then, I followed that up with a song I co-wrote with my friend Eric called, "Quit Your Bitchin." This one is an audience participation song. By the end of the song the entire, packed place was screaming the title line back at me. It was GREAT. (Probably not a radio cut, but I think people can relate to it!) And, I just finished a song called "The Forgotten Ones." It's about living in a nursing home...another tear jerker...but I just had to get it out. I've got several songs in the works, too...there are three in priority list right now. One called "Excuses" that is about making excuses for everything and not taking responsibility for your own destiny (a continuing theme with me...hmmmm) that I'm trying to finish with the help of our friend JC. I wrote out the lyrics and know how I want it to feel (Delbert McClinton-ish / Gary Nicholson-ish). JC is going to help me make that happen. Another one called "Drama" is about the drama we all seem to create in our lives and somehow end up constantly having other people create in our lives. This one is going to be a bluesy / ballsy song. I'm thinking it will sound Etta James-ish once it is all said and done. The third is a song about being true to yourself that I started over the weekend. It is about having something driving you inside, something you don't really understand, but that you are glad is there to keep you moving forward. Don't have a title for this one yet, but am hoping I get closer to finishing it this weekend.
On 1/9 I was elected to Christ Lutheran Church's council. In two short weeks, the choir director resigned, we've elected to let him out of his obligatory month notice and we're now pushing through a "music program" proposal from our very capable organist. To make this happen I've attended two council meetings, a finance committee meeting, a vision team meeting and two worship committee meetings about it. And those are just the meetings...several hours have been spent meeting outside of the meetings with people to help move the whole thing forward. Overall, it is going very smooth and I've been able to stick to the "no drama" rule I implemented for myself when elected. I actually feel really good about what is going on with CLC because of it. While I'll miss our choir director, the proposal we've got on the table right now, I think, will propel the church forward in many ways. It looks like I'll be attending a council retreat this weekend to vote on the music situation and to go over the 2005 goals of the church. We're off to a running start...and I actually feel good about it. I'll keep you posted on the progress and how the council thing is going as I get into it more. (Serenity now...serenity now....)
Work is going well for the most part. Got a modest raise and had an excellent review in December. NFIB has been very good to me over the past year. While I sometimes feel restless...I think this is where I'm supposed to be right now. The organization itself is not perfect (as with any place) but it is one of the best places I've worked in the past 18 years. The people here are really good at what they do and dedicated to making things happen. Lately, people, resources and circumstances beyond my control are trippin' me up, but, I'm trying really hard to keep a good attitude, put myself in other's shoes and be a part of the solution. I really miss managing a team, having the authority to make things happen and being a decision maker. I just have to be patient and keep on smilin'. It is what it is...It's a good place to be and I think eventually there is potential for me to assume more leadership roles if I stick it out. I'll keep you posted.
Blue Mother Tupelo:
John had a gig with BMT at The Five Spot over the weekend. We all worked together to invite enough people to pack the joint. Some of John's Grassmere co-workers came and tons of music / songwriting friends came. It was a blast. Micol and JTC were really in sync that night. A rep from Big Tractor Music was there to check them out. Sounds like she loved the band and her interest was peaked. Not sure if anything will come of it...but we are hopeful that it will. We'd really love to see something happen for Micol and Ricky...and, well...John would hopefully be included in that, too.
On another note, BMT is quickly filling up JTC's schedule for the next few months. In March they are doing another tour of Florida and in June they're doing a Chicago and surrounding area tour. Should be some great exposure and help them build their audience outside of the Southeast. We'll keep you posted in case there is a chance you can go see them when they come to the area!
Dale Herr has hooked JTC up with some studio sessions on Monday morning. They're doing some commercial work...knock-offs of old blues tunes to use for TV spots, radio spots, etc. Hopefully, the gig will lead to more studio gigs. Fingers crossed.
Still getting a steady stream of oldies work from Dale Herr as well. He really likes John (his extensive experience with these guys is a BIG plus). JTC played in Paducah, KY a couple weeks ago. As per usual, the bands really loved working with him (of course! HA.)...and the rest of the band for that matter. It's a good thing and it keeps the music money rollin' in!
Grassmere Animal Hospital:
John's working everyday from 7 - 3 and an occasional...and I mean occasional...Saturday. He really enjoys it. It's nice that he has a PT gig that he likes...but still hopes to someday (in the near future) get so many gigs that he can musically work himself out of a job there. Until then, the people are great and he loves working with animals. Everyday he has a story about something that happened to him or happened to an animal. It's wild.
I think that is everything for now. Just the highlights for a while. We still haven't gotten that new monitor at home, but we will eventually. I'll post some pics when we do.
Have a GREAT rest of the week.