Sunday September 19, 2004



I just tried to stay away from the guitar for most of the day today. I'm still too frustrated from yesterday.

Tom came over in the evening. We were supposed to work on harmony vocals, etc. but his voice was bothering him (again). No more excuses. Next time, just do it anyway. Tonight, though, I was unfocused and didn't wanna push. I did sit through The Band's “The Rumor” more times than I care to mention. I like the song a lot but it's not one I'd want to play. Tom wants to record it for an upcoming compilation of Athens artists doing Band songs. So I'll learn it. We'll trade lead vocals but he's gonna do most of ‘em.

For what it's worth, Grandma sounded a little bit better today. Her daughter Brenda got in touch and didn't even make it into a drama like certain others are prone to do. I appreciate that.



Saturday September 18, 2004




Today, I figured I'd do some servicing on my guitar and amp since there have been some technical issues. I went and dropped close to a c note to replace every tube and string in the house. After I got back, I took care of the amp which seems fine now (although I won't know for sure until get it up to volume at rehearsal). The guitar - well, that's another story. I took off the strings to do a little routine maintenance on the pickups (a screw had come loose from a spring). I fixed that and strung it back up. The guitar was shot. The bridge had apparently collapsed. I didn't know what to do. I tried everything and only ended up shooting the intonation, too. Ack! I spent all day going round and round with it to no avail. Frank builds guitars. I must get him to come to my rescue when he gets back into town.

Other than that, the other news isn't great either. My Grandmother's got a hybrid pneumonia / bronchitis combo and the family that's around isn't really looking out for enough. They're checking in occasionally but she needs someone to help her get food. She's not well enough to cook. What's wrong with these people? In any previous era, she'd be in the hospital. It's even bad enough that they brought a machine to her house to hook up to her while she sleeps. Again, I'm disappointed. I called Benji and told him to check in because her closer relatives aren't doing that great of a job. I know I can depend on him.

These are the same people, by the way, who said my Dad wasn't sick.

They're all so wrapped up in their mini-soap operas that they don't even consider "the right thing" except as an afterthought. I don't get it. Actually, I wish I didn't get it. I'm afraid I "get it" all too often.




Friday September 17, 2004



What was Rick James thinking? After having a stroke and diabetes, he decided to ingest Cocaine, Methamphetamines, Vicodin and downers...while having pneumonia. Geez. We'll miss the funk but you're lucky you made it that long. Yeah, I know - the drugs were just a "contributing factor" and he didn't technically die of an overdose. Still, drugs killed him.

Now, onto the normal ol' grind.

I think I did a good job of catching most stuff up this week. Now I can start putting up the reviews at Concert Shots next week and updating that.

I was supposed to go to Tony Bennett tonight but Ivan caused him to postpone. For some reason, The Doors postponed tomorrow night's show, too. That one makes no sense. The storm's out of here!

Amanda and I are going to go out to dinner tonight instead.

By the way, Amanda just got word that her Mom tripped and really banged herself up. She's got a broken nose and some teeth have been hurt, too. Come on, don't let her family start having problems! She claims she's okay. I can only hope so. She's a tough one. She'll be better before I even see her again, I'm sure.

Oh...and Happy Birthday, Rod.



Thursday September 16, 2004


Sting & Annie Lennox declare their togetherness Thursday night.


So Johnny Ramone's out of here, too, eh? What's up with these Ramones? Johnny sure wasted no time in chasing Joey and Dee Dee to the other side! And from what I hear, he and Joey pretty much hated each other! The Ramones will always be a band I'll regret not seeing when I had a chance.

I got the Big Show out to Flagpole today. My deadline was yesterday but since my last column hasn't run yet, I felt like I could be a day late. I also had to send in a bunch of photos for ABC @ ATL and some upcoming stories. Between those and the pics for the new Big Show, I probably had to upload and send 100 pics to Flagpole. I sure hope they get some use out of 'em.

It's been a while but one of my pics is up at Pollstar today. This one's of Rush. The odd thing? I took it with my old camera as an experiment...and it gets published over all those great close shots I took. What's so special about wide angles? That pic wasn't nearly as good as the other ones. Oh well, I'm still glad they used one.

I spent some time today wading through old tapes and discs for potential new material. I found a couple. An old Q-Sign song that O'Gorman and I wrote called "Down In Your Eyes" is on the short list. We could use a loungy one in this band. I'm also thinking about seeing if we can pull of "Looking For Home." Could be interesting.

Had a long "pep talk / dressing down" conversation with Tom today about where the band stands, our future and what needs to be done to get things moving more efficiently. I hope it did some good.

Of course, Frank told me he'd come over today after work and he never did. That doesn't help.

On similar lines, Matt Thompson (occasional Flagpole scribe and bass player in Tom's band Twain) and I are going to get together with a drummer to blow some steam off. It's just a little side project for fun. My allegiance is completely to the Darlings but my playing can only be helped, playing more! Plus, I've always liked Matt. He's a young curmudgeon from Mississippi. I'm sure we'll horrify everyone with whatever we decide to do. The first get together is next Tuesday. You'll hear all about it here.

Spoke to my nephew Robbie. He's concerned about us getting hit by Ivan. I assured him that everything'd be fine. It means the world to me that he's thinking of us.

Of course, the weather stinks. Ivan just barely bypassed us but we did get a lot of rain and a little wind. We're lucky. It really put a hurting on Atlanta!



Wednesday September 15, 2004 I added the Curiosa Festival, KISS, Poison, Rush, Loretta Lynn, Norah Jones and Heart to that Big Show. It'll definitely be big this time.

My sister Missy checked in today via telephone. It's good to get the update even though everything's not peachy-keen there. At least everything's passable.

In the evening, we had rehearsal and I brought Amanda along. I wish I hadn't now. We did a 20-song set list. The first 4 or so were fine. After that, it got worse and worse. It was just one of those super-disappointing nights. My amp kept screwing up (I think I need to change the tubes) so I wound up repeatedly kicking it (hey, it came back on). Then I got so irritated that I played extra hard causing strings to break. Good thing I have a backup guitar. Add on the fact that nobody was playing as well as they should be and you see why this pretty much sucked. Usually you have a good rehearsal for every bad one. This band is completely unpredictable. We'll have 2 great ones and 3 awful ones. Inconsistency is one of my pet peeves. That's this band's biggest problem. We'll keep nailing it, though, and eventually, no one'll be able to touch us. That's a promise.

Too bad Amanda came out for this one.



Tuesday September 14, 2004



I jumped on that ole' work hard today. I'm trying to get my Big Show done. This one's a doozy. It's a "Summer Wrap Up" edition which is going to contain festivals and maybe 9 or so other concert reviews. I've got a feeling it's going to run well over 2,000 words which is what I was assigned. Today I got Michael McDonald, Hall & Oates, Kanye West, Fuel, Los Lonely Boys and The Whigs done. That's just a start.

I also finally talked to my Mom again today. It's been a few weeks. I felt disconnected and out of touch so I was glad to hear from her. She seems to be doing okay. I hope she is. I'm just glad to talk to her again.

Looks like Hurricane Ivan's heading our way...big fun for outdoor shows this weekend!




Monday September 13, 2004


I spent most of this day updating this website. I also caught up on some other stuff. That's what this week's for. I can really make a dent in my workload if I lay into it hard. I'm going to do my best. I've got rehearsal Wednesday, a 2000 word Big Show due and a lot of other stuff as well. Let's see how far I can get!

I also posted the unmastered mix of "I Won't Stand Still" from yesterday in the RARITIES section. Check it out. It's the first recording of the band as it's gonna be - me, Tom and Frank.


Click here for last week's update!