On a more current tip, we played Red Rocks last night and by all accounts it was a great show. The fans showed up in force and a good time was had by all. We are finding that the younger audiences really respond well to the new material and the kind of stretching out we do on songs like, SuperChrist and Heavy Metal Machine. This is very encouraging to us as it tells us that the things we are attracted to as artists are relevant to listeners as well. The time is fast approaching when real music will be played by real people for real people like you to listen to!
Speaking of artists, I have been listening to a lot of music these days. Namely John Coltrane, Thelonious Monk, Tony Williams Lifetime, Lee Morgan, Mulgrew Miller, Deep Purple, Rainbow, Captain Beyond, as well as watching tons of old Jazz videos. Anything I can get my hands on that isn't strapped to some sort of conventionalism. I've been studying the life and career of Coltrane. I've been trying to insert his dedication to music and truth into my own life. It's certainly not easy but well worth it as it not only makes me a better musician. It makes me a better husband, father, friend, etc. Being on tour you find yourself with a lot of time to kill and I feel that the best use of that time is practicing and studying music. Like Coltrane I have found that when I have my music straight, the rest of my life follows easily.
But it's not all work work work for JC. A man has to spend some time "off grid" once in a while. I've been going out here and there and having some fun. I got to throw out the first pitch at an Arizona Diamondbacks game last week. Talk about nerve-racking! I was more nervous than I have ever been before a show. I got NO practice and just had to walk out to the mound and throw a strike. Now I played baseball my whole childhood and into high school, but never in a major league stadium! So out I marched to the mound (all the way to the rubber, 60' 6"!), and heaved one home. The whole time I'm thinking, "Don't bounce it in or that's what you'll be remembered for, not music!" All went well. I didn't choke and I was able to hold my head high as we watched the D'Backs lose to San Francisco.
I also have had the recent honor of being on the cover of Modern Drummer. Ever since I was a little drummer I have thought of MD as the pent ultimate achievement. I use to look at my heroes on that magazine and think that someday, if I practice hard enough..................
So check it out. It's a good rant on the state of affairs and has some good Zeitgeist stories as well as some beautiful photos of yours truly taken by the illustrious Kristin Burns. It's the third cover for me but it's always exciting. Remember that anything is attainable. The whole of your life's dreams are alive in your heart waiting for you to set them free.
Some Photos to go along with this blog:
Some cats in Greece!
Me in Greece
a not so friendly protest outside of my hotel......................... In Greece!
Cat in Istanbul!
A Peregrine Falcon visits one of my bird feeders!
J.S. pre-show warm up!
Chemtrails over Southern California
The Spaceship lands at Red Rocks!!!!!
What JC does for fun!!!!!!!!!!!!
And more fun!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ciao!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!