Friday, August 6, 2010

One Minute of Joy

You have 1 minute to hear what's new once the auto-player commences.  So pay attention!

"When the Music's Over", that is the title of this blog.  Which I began as a means of kick starting my creative writing.  Of course, there is much implied in the title.  This is quoting the great Jim Morrison's lyric, "...when the music's over, turn out the lights".  As in, when I can no longer make music, just shoot me.

There are certain challenges as an amateur.  The biggest being time.  I have a real job.  That is, one that takes up most of my time.  That was okay prior to having children, I had plenty of time to play in bands, rehearsals, gigs, write songs, or just sit on a porch stoop plucking away.  Being a proper father takes time.  So I stopped playing in bands for the most part, and took to recording in my basement in the evenings into the wee hours.

The other challenge is energy.  Creativity only comes from inspiration.  There's nothing inspiring about needing a nap.  Living with Addison's disease has really limited my energy.  Far more than I was expecting, as the doctors pretty much said, "take the steroids and you'll live a 'normal' life".  Bullshit!  It's a roller coaster.  A really slow roller coaster!  Pretty much, feel good for a few weeks then crap for a month or two.  So far anyway.  I'm still hopeful I can take full control of medicating my own symptoms.  Waiting for a doctor to push the right buttons is purgatory!  "Try this and see me in four months".  And when it doesn't work (it usually doesn't)  you've pissed away a whole season hoping these twits can get it right!

Enough bitching about my poker hand.  The bottom line is writing takes a lot less energy than producing recordings.  So I started this blog as a creative outlet.  It went swimmingly for a while, but the last six months I can't seem to get the first word out!  So now, I write.  I don't know how creative it is, but at least it's something.

I decided to take some time off this summer, and I started my vacation in the studio.  "One Minute of Joy" was the result.  I'm a musical doodler of sorts.  I can pick up all sorts of things and make some sort of rhythm or melody out of it.  What's new in this recording are a couple of things.  First, I have an old Melobar lap steel that I needed to convert from 10 strings to 6 strings, which I did.  You can hear it during the opening melody.  The second is, me playing a live drum kit.  It's nothing to write home about, but it keeps the bed made.

I figured this was just a segue to a couple weeks of musical productivity.  Trouble was, the month long heat wave in New Jersey really knocked me on my ass.  I've determined that I will never live in Texas again!  I used to gig in 105 degree heat, outdoors!  I would literally need an IV hooked up to me onstage these days to do that!  Maybe I'll move to Canada?

That's the news from Lake Woebegone.  I'll try to write sooner next time!


  1. “...once the autoplayer commences.”

    Commences, one of my favorite southern ways with words. And I see you have a southwestern rug under your gear. You may not be able to do 105F, and my life may have taken an indefinite northern turn, but once down south, always down south says I.

    Most importantly, I majorly dig the funking groove of your one minute poker break in the NJ heat! On grooves, what a weird design, the Melobar... Proves we humans—especially those guitarists amongst us—will think up any new thing that looks like it’d be worth somethin’ to have fun with.

    And dude, I dig your drums. Of course, you know what they say about drummers... But I, personally, have never met one I didn’t like ; )

    All in all, it is so good to see a post from you, Music Man. Maybe I can rally and see my way clear to finding 1 min to do the same, although my schedule’s not lookin’ good. At least you’ve inspired me to wish to post something, and that counts for everything, again says I : )

  2. I LoVeD hearing about the inspiration behind your blog title, etc. It's weird...I could hear that your music had a link to The Doors/Morrison, but I didn't know about those lyrics. You helped inspire me to again sit at my antique upright grand piano the other night, to play a bit...just let it flow. It's been a while. I got going and didn't want to stop. The music helps pull something deep out of us. I guess that's why we either run to it or run from it.

  3. Loved it Michael. Just got home today and taking a few minutes to visit internet friends before I curl up with my kindle in my own blessed bed. Vacations are great but so are homecomings. Prolonged illness is a frustrating and exhausting thing. I hope the medical folks can find the magic combination that works for you. You are missed.

  4. I am having a MichaelO withdrawal...need new posts Mister. Also, where is the music? Sometimes I go to your site to hear the music as I work at my missing it. Your audience awaits!! Truly, I hope you are ok. :-)
    Lana C. at

  5. Lana - the good news is you can just hit the arrow on my music player and it will do its thing. I turn on/off the auto play depending on my posts.

    The bad news is I was in the hospital last week. I went in with partial blindness and parasthesis (paralysis). I've got several new diagnoses to go with the others. Pernicious anemia (B12 deficiency) appears to have caused some nerve damage. Polycytosis (high red cell count), don't know what that is contributing. The vision is the result of swollen optic nerves, from a rare condition called pseudotumor cerebri, which causes high pressure in the brain. Don't know why I have it though, it's usually the domain of obese women. Fucking weird, eh?

  6. I lived in both Texas and New Jersey,
    love texas a lot,
    new jersey is cool, near new york city.


    Special awards for you. Happy Sunday! xx
    Hope to see you at our potluck tonight.

  8. How's it going?? I was just checking in - thinking about how it seems those with Addison's/Adrenal problems appear to meet some pre-determined requirement to be artistic or such. Our bodies are indeed weird. Those who don't have any problems are just left out of the weirdness...we must feel sorry for all those "normal" folks. Seriously, I'm hoping things are better. I'm being interviewed this weekend by someone doing research into adrenal insufficiency; I sure wish we had more of it available, so I'm willing to help.

  9. It's truly challenging to create music especially if we don't have enough time to do so and even if we do have some spare time, our creative juices doesn't seem to be functioning at all. It would surely take some effort to create good music.