I really should have titled this “I’m still here” or some such nonsense. I don’t know. Some of you care. Probably the ones who have visited here! Maybe you enjoy my song, or you’ve met me. Maybe we’re friends. Maybe we worked together. Doesn’t really matter. You’re good to go in my book.
So , what have I been up to since the release of “King Of Diamonds”?
Well, it started promisingly enough. A fantastic write up in the paper, invites to play at venues, some live in studio at the local FM station, lots of blog coverage, My first national radio play on none other than the legendary KCRW (Thanks Valida!) followed by a few more stations, contact from managers and promoters, a contract with a publishing library, some talks with labels. and of course, incredible support from you guys.
Well, I decided to follow that up with the “next step”, moving to a bigger town where I had good friends in the music biz, and making a push w/ more live shows and more opening slots. Getting the word out plain and simple, the good ole fashioned way.
So, we packed up the truck, said a few goodbyes, and hit the road, like a good nomad should.
When I arrived I was offered paid gigs almost immediately. BOOM! Exactly what a guy is looking for. Money AND a chance to play. The game was a foot and business was looking good. Onward and upward, the future looking bright. well, it hasn’t quite worked out the way i thought.
In January 2015 I played a gig. I had noticed a few days before hand i was experiencing a lot of soreness in my wrists/ forearms. “No big deal” I thought, and chalked it up to over practice. Pop a couple Advil, play the gig, rest up, don’t book anything for a bit and we should be good to go. Onward and upward! Unfortunately, that didn’t happen at all. Instead I found I was having debilitating pain the next day. So much so I couldn’t use my hands and arms. Well, a month became two months, then six months, I went to the doctor. “Carpal tunnel” he said. Another doctor “tendonitis”. “Tendinosis” Whatever the hell it was, it had taken away my ability to play music. and my ability to work. and I was having issues driving. I couldn’t sleep. I started wearing big wrist gauntlets 24/7. Trying everything I could find to fix it. A year passed. Nothing was better, but I thought “Fuck it, Im no quitter. Onward and upward, the show must go on!” So, I released the single, and did my best to push through. Completely losing the ability to play acoustic, and finding a way to modify my practice and using an electric to work on songs. I released the single, and soldiered on, working on all the behind the scenes promotion while holding out hope it would clear up.
After the move it seemed to get worse. It’s worse now. I’m in constant pain and can’t sleep. The only good news is, we may finally have it figured out. “Ulnar Nerve Entrapment” in both elbows. Most of the symptoms show themselves in the hands. Pain and numbness. a dull ache, followed by shooting pain. I wake up multiple times a night with what I’ve learned is “nerve pain”. I have been unable to play guitar AT ALL since I moved. Oh, I’ve tried,(I’m a stubborn sum a bish) and I’ll get through a song, OR, IF IM LUCKY, two, and then i’ll regret it for weeks. It’s gotten to the point where I can either try to play the guitar or be able to open my car door. Fine movements just kill me, but I do have some ability to perform gross movements. So, after I got done sulking about how unfair everything was (the truth is, I was devastated and heartbroken. A Complete emotional mess)I decided to go back to my first love, Martial Arts. Music is such a huge part of who I am, that I’d lost myself to the chronic injury, and needed to get my head worked out. and I’m trying.
I trained in stand up karate for a few months. Now, I’m back in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (It’s a grappling art, for those who don’t know) Physical activity (specifically fighting) helps me to empty my head of all the negativity and doubt, and helps me clear up. it also takes my attention away from the fact that long term injury is currently robbing me of the career path I’d chosen for myself that I’ve been working at for years.
I’m honestly just trying to refocus, redefine, and figure out where to go from here. Make no mistake, I haven’t given up on music, I just have to find out who I am. Playing guitar is such a huge part of my personal identity, it’s been traumatic having it taken away. I’m not sure what I wanna do, or where I wanna go. I gotta look at how to proceed.
I’m not giving up. I was born a fighter, and will continue fighting, if not just for me, then for you guys. For all of you who have been so incredibly supportive of me for so long. That’s where we’re at, at the moment.
I love you guys, and just wanted to share a bit of an update as to my goings on….