Isn’t it Strange How Important Music Really Is?

I hate to be one of “those dads,” but I am so glad that Christmas vacation ends in two days and Ash can get back to school. I hate hate hate telling him that I can’t play with him and have to work. As a writer, all my work is done at home, so over the last two weeks I have gotten very little done and have gone to the last minute on some assignments with deadlines.

That can end on Monday and things can get back to normal. Now I just have to figure out how to get out of bed early again.

Anyway, since I have so much work I have fallen behind on, and since I am me, I have taken some time to set up some playlists in Spotify. Yeah, I have finally decided to give the Premium service a chance since it is only 99 cents for the next three months. So, the first thing I do is set up playlists of songs I want to listen to while I am writing.

* I thought these were all original songs, but some songs have the wrong singer’s names beside them and the quality goes up and down based on the song. Am I just confused about what is included here?

Anyway, I don’t listen to music as much as I used to. No, I’m not one of those A-holes who claims that music today sucks and the only good music is old music. See, I was someone in the 80s who loved new music and basically saluted with my middle finger anyone who claimed that the music of the day sucked. I won’t become those people now that I am – not as young.

However, while putting together these playlists, I am shocked at how much music meant to certain moments of my life. I wonder why I don’t let music affect me in the same way now. Honestly, some memories are based completely around music.

That might also be because I only listened to Christian music as a kid and never got into the evil secular rock and roll until I was about 18. First concert I ever went to that was non-Christian was Cinderella, Winger and the BulletBoys. I loved the show, but I still regret that I chose that over Poison and Tesla because, at the time, I had no idea who Tesla was.

I remember in 1989, my best friend Bill and I went to Blockbuster Music so we could buy the Motley Crue Dr. Feelgood cassette the day it came out. Yeah – the cassette. Hell, I used to spend most of my paychecks in used music stores browsing the cassette tape section.

I finally bought my first CD player in 1990 (the things were stupid expensive back then) and then bought my first two CDs (they cost like $20 back then). They were George Michael’s Faith and Poison’s Open Up and Say Ahh… I should take a minute here to say that I have no embarrassment at all for the music I like and listen to and will tell anyone who I like. As I said when I was talking about old people looking down on my music – people who laugh at my choices get the middle finger, regardless of age.

I saw Warrant at the Zoo Amphitheater and stood in the rain to watch them play. I saw Warrant again with Bill and then we went to the Samurai Saki House and had beer with them (actually at the table with them) before watching them play the Green Acres theme song with a metal beat. I have to say that my only real regret was missing the Guns N Roses concert because I never got to see them play with the original band.

Remember FM radio? It used to mean something.

I listened to The KATT and especially listened every time the Blade Runner was on the air. Hell, it was almost 20 years ago and I remember his thoughts about the death of Stevie Ray Vaughan (“you could put Motley Crue in an airplane full of drugs and crash it and they would come out unharmed with a new live album”). Every time I park my shopping cart in a holder at Wal Mart, I remember his anger at his Trans Am getting scratched and how he damned everyone who let their carts roll free.

Blade Runner talked about Halloween and asked why, when people rose from dead on Halloween, they were Zombies, but when they rose from the dead on Easter, they were the Savior. A decade later, I shot my short film What Would Zombie Jesus Do? and it originated from a Blade Runner segment I heard years before. The coolest thing is that Blade Runner was in that short film for me and we are still friends today (I met him over a decade after I listened to him on the radio).

I miss real dee-jays who talked about things that matter instead of trying to sell cars. That is why I listed to XM Radio now, and the dee-jays there don’t do anything but make jokes and spout trivia (except one or two exceptions, like Eddie Trunk’s awesome show on Hair Nation. Anyway, if you want to hear some good music, check out Blade Runner on his Internet radio show – http://www.bladerunnerradio.com/.

Well, here we are in 2015 and I find myself listening to music only when I am driving, and it is almost always a classic radio station – either Hair Nation or Lithium (grunge). Sometimes with Johanna, I will listen to her station, which is The Pulse and new music, and I like a lot of what I hear there. But, that is about it. When I have my iPod on, I am listening to podcasts usually, so maybe Spotify will help me get back into music again. I don’t know.

Anyway, Monday Ash goes back to school and I can start writing regularly again. Of course, there will be the usual content that pays the bills, but I also plan to start putting more work into Renegade Cinema and will finish writing the first draft of Dollar Deal: The Story of the Stephen King Dollar Baby Filmmakers by the end of January – guaranteed. Plus, my podcast is coming soon and I will have more info on who my guests will be soon.

Until then, keep your eyes on this blog and I will keep you updated on my progress – and ramble a little along the way. Anyway, tell me you love me in the comments below and I will name a character after you in my daydreams while I am avoiding working tomorrow.

And, just to prove I like more than just old hair metal:

OK, maybe they still share a trait… Suck it.

Happy New Year, ie. I’m Back

I’m back.

Well, technically I never left. All my writing is still available all over the Internet (specifically at my site Renegade Cinema and at the many content sites I write for, with AXS getting most of my work now).

However, it is time to really light a fire and what better time than the New Year, since – you know – everyone follows through with making changes on New Year’s Day.

But, I am gonna do my best.

Basically, here is what you have to look forward to from me in 2015. I will keep writing more than I have time for in order to pay the bills and keep food on the table and clothes on the back of my family.

I’m also going to work harder on getting Ash involved with things outside of the home. That includes intermediate swimming lessons starting next Tuesday and he is getting back into basketball starting the Wednesday after that with games every Saturday for a month. No more procrastinating and forgetting to sign him up for sports and no more just making him watch TV and play inside every night while I write more than I have time for.

Yep, that is the conundrum I find myself in. But that is solved by just writing more while he is in school and not jerking around so much instead of writing.

Oh yeah, and there will be more writing coming too in the form of the Stephen King ‘Dollar Deal‘ book. It is time to stop talking and start doing. I think I have finally cracked the book. I did all the interviews a long time ago but have been struggling with putting it together. I think I have figured out how to put it together in a way that will entertain the readers while still being a quality book. And it will be finished soon.

Guaranteed.

Anyway, I will also write this blog to make myself follow through, because I have plenty of time to write something else…

Here is the bottom line. I will do everything I can to keep making money, while giving Ash more time, while also putting the pieces together for the future (the books) so that I can start to try to help make Johanna’s life better as well.

And I’m starting a podcast in the next couple of months.

Welcome to the circus that is my life.

** Some of the links on the side of the page don’t work yet, but hang with me, I’m getting there.