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Showing posts from June, 2013

Popdose Rewind: Patty Griffin, "Be Careful"

On Tuesday night I attended the Patty Griffin concert at the Wiltern Theater. One of the songs she performed that night was "Be Careful," a song that I featured in the Basement Songs column back in 2009. I love this song and it always reminds me of Sophie.   When I wrote this piece Sophie was still a little girl. Now she's entering high school and I couldn't be prouder. It's a bittersweet feeling, though. She's growing up, and soon, oh so very soon, she won't need her dad any more.  Since the day we moved into our house, I have regularly snuggled my daughter Sophie for about 10 minutes before she goes to sleep at night. When she was younger, it was to help ease her fears over the creaks and rattles of her room when the lights were off. As she got older, this routine turned into an opportunity for the two of us to catch up on our days. I found out about how school was for her, and Sophie asked me questions about my job.  For the past year I have tried to en

A new column at Popdose...

As I continue trying to sell copies of Basement Songs (have you bought your copy, yet), I've begun a new column over at Popdose. It's called "Goin' Country," which, as you may surmise, is about country music. I've written off country music a majority of my life, even though many of the artists I like record music that would fit into some form of the genre. Country may be the one music, besides opera, that I've never given much consideration to. I've spent the past couple of months immersing myself in country and some of the culture and now I'm ready to share my journey with anyone who wants to read. I've always loved history and this venture is giving me a chance to dig a little deeper into American culture and the music that has been a part of our country from its very beginning. Interested? Here's a link to check out the first column.

I love it, but I do mind that they're gone!

This morning at 4:20 AM, I dropped off Julie and the kids at LAX. They flew back to Cleveland to visit Julie's family for three weeks. I've been awake since 3:10 and I feel pretty good. I'm still waiting for the wall to hit me. THREE WEEKS! It gets harder and harder to say goodbye to the family when hey go on trips like this one. For this vacation we'll be apart longer than ever before. I wonder if their leaving added to the emotions I felt when Jake and I went to see Man of Steel over the weekend? Could be. This time around I have some projects to do in the house, little tasks to keep my mind occupied and fill in the void left in the house when they aren't around. I can't talk about them on the Internet because Julie reads this blog. I plan on writing, too. I need to dive back in and get the pen back on the page. I'm not talking about writing reveiws, either. I want to start another book and I have a new column for Popdose that I hope to begin publishing t

"Sir, Now You've Upset Me." Happy BDay, Vladika

Last weekend my friend, Brett, turned 43. I've known him since high school, where we began our association with each other as enemies. I can't tell you why we didn't like each other. I was the band director's kid, so maybe that had something to do with it. I recall an incident with an Eagles LP, which could've been the source of my anger. It was the hastily compiled "Greatest Hits, Vol. 2" which I received from the Columbia Record Club. In other words, cheap vinyl that I got for a penny. Hardly a reason to get pissed at a guy. Then again, I was 14/15 at the time, so I wasn't very logical. The strange thing about the animosity between the two of us was that we had the same mutual friends: Alex, Tom, John, Phil, Sally, Kathy and Kerry. We all hung out together. At some point Brett and I buried the hatchet (probably over a couple of North Olmsted Coolers, a primitive version of a Shandy) and became good buddies. During my high school senior year emotiona

Bates Motel and CF

It's taken me a long time, but I've finally started watching Bates Motel , A&E's sort of prequel series to Psycho . I say sort of because the series takes place in modern day and not the 1960s. The show is well written and has the look and feel of Twin Peaks . I believe that's what the producers were trying to achieve. Toward the end of the pilot a young girl named Emma introduces herself to a teenage Norma Bates. She's walking around with an oxygen tank and tells him that she has CF. That's it, just 'CF.' It's not until the second episode that Emma explains that CF means cystic fibrosis and how it is destroying her lungs. Needless to say I was immediately intrigued. Emma is one of the main characters on the show and I was curious to find out why the writers chose to include a character with cystic fibrosis in their show.A little research and I discovered that one of the show's writers, Bill Balas, actually has CF. According to Wikipedia (the