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I thought I was gonna lose my dream

I thought I was gonna lose my dream.

Honest to God. A year passed. I’m working myself up.

Another year passes. I’m thinking. I’m working. I’m fighting myself every step of the way.

Crushing self doubt. Insecurity. Wave after wave of anxiety. Fear. Disbelief. and every now and again. Joy. happiness. Excitement.

I’m working myself up and pulling myself down. Over and over again.

Looking at my hack ass songs. Shit recordings. Questioning why I would ever do something this stupid.

and over and over again, people keep taking me seriously. Over. and over. and over.

Not just friends, but industry folk. Other musicians. My heroes climb onboard.

and I’m in disbelief.

It’s like I say in my “Intersections” song; “If the talent’s there, then why haven’t I heard it”.

Money becomes an issue. I can’t get it done. People start asking questions. “Hey, man, how’s the record coming?”

How much longer is it gonna be? You almost done??

Things keep happening.

I send it off to mastering. To the guy who did the records I based my stuff on. should be a slam dunk.

The guy fucks the whole thing. I HATE being put on the spot, but I have to stand up for the record. Did I mention that? I’ve fought for this thing since the very first day. Since I got scammed at the initial tracking studio and had to pull the sessions.

So I say, “Hey man, I’m not feeling those masters”. My producer backs me up. Gives the guy frequencies. Tell him exactly what we want. The guy get an attitude. “I dont have to do this twice. Ive never had to do this before. Everyone LOVES my work.” Problem is, his shit is wrong. So we have him do it again. He sends it back. Even MORE fucked than the first time. and AGAIN he’s completely disregarded what he’s been told.

Tells me I owe him money. Do him a favor, let him hear what i “Settle” for…..

It’s ok. I will fight for it. Producers pushing this way. Friends pushing that.

and I’m fighting tooth and nail for songs I’m not even sure I believe in.

I send it to another mastering guy. and another. and another. Smart enough this time to only have em do singles. NOPE. NOPE. NOPE.

So, I give it to my producer’s guy. Who’s busy. Who has a day job. and is a working musician.

But the master comes back right.

But then, All the issues from the fucked tracking sessions start rearing there heads.

Weird shit coming out. The destructive edits. Where the guy I trusted to track it screwed me. Weird noises. vocal issues from gear choices.

But we get it.

4th time through. 5th time through. 6th time through.

The funding is gone. There was never any to begin with.

But they sound right. it’s coming.

I train with Incubus’ manager. Learning the ins and outs of the business. I have a running train of conversation with Paramore’s manager. I train w/ a radio promoter. One on one. Guy takes a shine to me. Lost a son in Iraq to suicide. We share a heart to heart. 3 hours on the phone. 4 hours. He’s gonna help me do this.

The record label pres pulls up to my house. in a 70k Mercedes driven by my buddy Space Ghost. Label guy was in a cool artsy major label band. Takes me out for pizza. We talk business. He likes what he hears. Wants the masters soon as I have em.

The producer offers up a Publishing deal.

Somewhere in here, I start working for a pro wrestler w a show on Spike TV and the guitarist from a multi platinum rock band.

I’m listed at all these rock shows. I’m doing cons and sitting next to heroes from Tv and film.

I build huge contact lists. I get ready for a PR campaign. I’m gonna do this. With these shit songs and my lack of talent. Fuck it. If every one else is stupid enough to believe it, Ill just go along with it.

Then. My wrists cramp. and won’t stop. my hands become unusable after a gig. it’s ok. I only have one more gig coming. it’s 2 months out. I have time.

They dont get better. I cancel the gig. I can’t play. I can’t play anymore. I can’t use my hands at all.

This goes on for a year

It’s over. It’s all over.

My whole career. This thing I’ve fought for for 3 years. Dead. Im all in and it’s over.

I don’t know what to do. I collapse again.

Flashback:

I break down in the shower. Falling in a heap. Sobbing.
Mixes aren’t right. The records fucked. Bass player and engineer railroaded me. Vocals sound weird. What happened to the drums.

I’m a fraud. I’m a fraud and everyone knows it. They can see.
Dirty poor white trash kids don’t do what I’m doing.
I suck.

I own 2 pairs of shorts and have had to cut all the sleeves off my shirts. they were all worn out w/ holes in the pits.

Flashback:

My hero is an oddball former major label rocker who lives right down the street. I imagine which giant house on the lake is his. huge yard. roman pillars.

He believes in my songs. or, at least is kind enough not to throw me out of his house when I play my songs for him.

I’m scared. My hands are shaking. I have such bad nerves. and I’ve really tried.

Will he help me pick the ones to record? Will he sing on one?

If he says no, the record is dead. The whole concept is gone.

I getting ready for it. I hold my breath. I know it’s coming. I’m some hack ass, with shit songs and no hope.

Sure, he says. picks the one he likes. This’ll be cool. You’ve got good hooks. Nice melodies.

This process happens EVERY TIME. I get ready. to have my face LAUGHED IN. I’m ready. I know it’s coming.

“GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE. DUDE, YOU SUCK. THE FUCK IS THIS? HAHAHAHAHA”

I go after the steel player. I’m obsessed with Gram Parsons. I want his pedal steel player.

I hold my breath. Fuck it. Former major label rockers in.

I shoot some loosely tracked bullshit over.

” I like it, let’s give it a shot”
(we’ll talk about the producer telling me to fire the steel player later)

I bring in my buddy, the drummer. My friend the keyboardist. Drummers buddy, the bass player (apparently, you need a bass player. eh, the doors did it without one. Thought I d give it a shot.)

Tracking engineer knows the former major label rocker. and another acquaintance of mine who plays music.

Keyboardist is great, but the wrong guy for the job. Not the right fit. Bass player and engineer railroad me.

Shit sucks.

 

 

Now:

Growing up, I wanted to be Scott Weiland. I idolized the rockers. Not the brooders. Not the sensitive songwriters. Fuck all that.

White trash in a leather jacket. I idolized cool.

I wanted to be them. The guys from G n’ R. Slash w the hat. Dave Navarro. Scott Weiland. Nikki Sixx. James Iha from the Pumpkins. Dirty, wild dangerous cool. I just liked the guys who looked cool.

and I idolized supergroups.

Hell. Look what I did with my own record: Some hack ass nobody w/ a few shit songs builds a super group of his own heroes as his band.

Velvet Revolver. Brides of Destruction. AUDIOSLAVE. A Perfect Circle (who I didnt even like, I just liked the idea of) Huge posters in my room. Every wall. every surface. the roof, the doors. even the windows. (I had a LO PRO poster, just on supergroup principal. and never liked them)

NOTHING mattered. Nothing but rock and roll.

I had this red silk shirt. longsleeve. like burgundy red.

I used to wear it at high school with no shirt under it. With only the center button buttoned. So my stomach and chest showed. I looked like a tool, Im sure. but I thought. Man, this is cool. I’m cool. Scott Weiland does it.

I felt like Scott Weiland. I though. I look like Scott Weiland.

The other kids liked rock bands, too.

Nu-metal. Emo core shit. Guys that wore like Vans and baggy skateboard attire. beanies.

I was off with my uncle at the Van Halen concert. Rocking my band T shirts. Listening to 90’s rockers.

Learning the game. Learning the roots of the game.

I got kicked out of my high school class while listening to “Wicked Garden” by STP. I spun the greatest hits “thank you” album non stop. That song always made me feel like a complete bad ass.

I had a Velvet Revolver calendar. and I was SO pumped when Iron Maiden got kicked off Ozzfest and replaced with them. I got to see the guys in person. Some security guy even let me go down like 10 rows closer to catch the set.

Scott Weiland with his megaphone and pilots hat. Who knows where his shirt went.

I bought slashes signature wah pedal the day it came out. I didnt even know how to play electric. Paid like 180 bux for it. It was beautiful. then sold it for like 30 bux years later, having never even played the damn thing. That wasn’t the point. hahahahaha

Idk. I keep getting interrupted.

I’m sad to hear about Scott’s passing. I’m grieving, in my own way. It hurts. It hurts a lot more than it should, probably. maybe it’s the time of year. I’m apt to grief. or I’m already there.

But Scott Weiland was important. He wasn’t my favorite singer. That was Chris Cornell. or maybe Brandon Boyd, at the time. and STP wan’t my favorite band.

But it hit me. There was something about him that was always a part of everything I was doing.

and I’m sad that he’s gone. He was a part of me.

and I thank him for it. For making me cool. or at least feel cool.

for protecting me. and making me untouchable, if only in my mind.

and giving me hope.

Here’s to you, Scott.
May you find peace on the other side.

Ok, so a bit of a surprise

I might be playing a show. YEP. Total surprise to me too, seeing as my forearms/wrists ain’t fixed yet. But such is life, sometimes.

By “might”, I mean “Am”.

 

Opening for the the FANTASTIC David Lareau and the Copperpots at the Orlando Brewing.

 

3003127

 

David Lareau was in a CRIMINALLY underrated band called “Mile” on Columbia Records back in the early 00’s.

He also happens to be a DAMN GOOD songwriter, BAD ASS guitar player, and one hell of a nice guy ๐Ÿ™‚

 

 

Anyway, I’m excited. I don’t know how good my set will be, seeing as I haven’t really been able to practice or play for a YEAR (yeah….almost a year) now, but, fuck it.

 

You either do, or do not.

 

and at this point in time. I do.

 

Someplace’s own,

HH

DRAGON CON, THE RECAP!

Alright, so where were we?

Ah, yes. DRAGONCON 2015.

Well, I survived. Mostly.

Welcome to Georgia!
Welcome to Georgia!

We got up there on Thursday and I got to visit my old pal MARTA (Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, for those of you not in the know) which is Atlanta’s version of the subway system.

Marta packed to the gills
Marta packed to the gills
The line for the escalator
The line for the escalator

I had my usual multiple mile walks from the condo to Marta, then from Marta to the convention. Once in the morning, then again in the evening. We used the hashtag #TheGreatJeffAndGeorgeRoadtrip for the pictures we were taking as we made out drive from Florida up to Georgia.

The crash pad
The crash pad

Ivy everywhere
Ivy everywhere

Rocks!
Rocks!

a stream!
a stream!

My view from the window
My view from the window

I made new friends, which is always cool, and got to meet quite a few people I wanted to meet ๐Ÿ™‚

George’s old friend (and my new one) Sgt. Fincher was working the con, and we had a blast. Guy’s been on 3 or 4 seasons of COPS and is a stuntman and stunt driver. Dudes and TOTAL badass, and one of the coolest guys you’ll meet. We had a blast hanging out and cracking jokes with him. He’s going into entertainment full time when he done with the Police department. I had him sign his business card for me, too ๐Ÿ™‚

COPS on location with the men and women of law enforcement
COPS
on location with the men and women of law enforcement
Me, George and Andrew Fincher!
Me, George and Andrew Fincher!

George and I had our fun, too. And we sold out of all our new buttons!
Check out the bad ass Space Ghost balloon!

Baloons for days!
Baloons for days! (yes, there are TWO L’s in balloon)

Me and George Hamming it up in Macon
Me and George Hamming it up in Macon

My buddy Chris wanted a signed 8×10 head shot, so G Lowe was kind enough to draw one up for me so I could sign it. and Chris put it in a frame with his Rocky Horror picture show signed piece next to TIM CURRY. 0_0

IMG_20150906_154142

My first signed head shot
My first signed head shot

I surprised my buddy Paul (of Ghost Hunters: International), as he didn’t know I was gonna be up there for Dragon Con. It was great seeing him, as always. Really good guy, and a very creative brain, too. He builds all the equipment for those ghost hunting shows as well as coming up with cool creative tee shirts.

The walk of fame at DragonCon is huuuge, so you don’t always get a chance to see your buds even though you’re all cooped up in the same room.

I got the chance to chat Rugby and NFL with Matt Nable of “Arrow” fame. He plays the character Ra’s al Ghul. He was our next door neighbor at the table and a cool bloke in his own right. guy played 7 seasons of pro rugby!

Matt Nable! (Ra's al ghul on Arrow)
Matt Nable!
(Ra’s al ghul on Arrow)
Stole another one! Spent the day pretending to be Matt Nable!
Stole another one! Spent the day pretending to be Matt Nable!

and I spent the whole con messing with Victor Webster of CONTINUUM fame. I even sicked the balloon (Yes, Andrew, there are TWO L’s in balloon) guy on him to make him a crazy hat. Victors a big ink nut and wanted to talk tattoo’s. He is one of the NICEST human beings you’ll meet. He called my wife up (She’s a fan of the show) and she thought it was George messing with her! hahaha

Victor Webster of Continuum
Victor Webster of Continuum
I sicked the balloon guy on him!
I sicked the balloon guy on him!

I OWE YOU ONE, VICTOR.

Our buddies Trace and Frank from Mystery Science Theater 3000 stopped by, and Frank and I talked about our mutual pal Cat who he had the opportunity to do some podcasts with up in New York. Turns out Frank has a new show on Sirius called “Tell Me Everything” on channel 121 from 2-5pm.

Me, Trace and Frank
Me, Trace and Frank

To our right was Anime Voice actor Josh Grelle and his girlfriend, Joanna. They were super cool. I still don’t get the whole Anime thing, but you couldn’t ask for nicer people. They didn’t even call Atlanta PD for as much as I was bothering them and chatting ๐Ÿ™‚
IMG_20150906_111626

And then at the end of the table. A FUCKING CLASS ACT, was voice acting LEGEND Dave Fennoy. WHAT A GREAT GREAT DUDE. SUPER nice and a ton of fun to hang with.

DAVE !!!
DAVE !!!

This was just in our section.

Tara from Buffy across the way
Tara from Buffy across the way

I got the chance to talk Jack White, and Tigers baseball with a fellow Michigander Rob Paulsen (Pinky and the brain, Animaniacs) He’s a huge Jack White fan, and I showed him the picture Jack took with me and my daughter at the Tigers game here in FL.

Rob Paulsen
Rob Paulsen

GO TIGERS!!!

OH! I MET NICHOLAS LEA!!!!!!!!!!!

I have an X-Files Tattoo, so, that should put that into perspective for you.

ALEX KRYCEK!!!!

Nicholas Lea!
Nicholas Lea!

WHUUUUUUUUUUTTTTTTTTTTTTT.

Oh man, he was super nice to.

I also got an animation print from C. Martin Croker!

C. Martin Croker
C. Martin Croker

Illustrator and voice of Zorak and Moltar on Space Ghost: Coast to Coast and chatted with him and Carey Means (Frylock from Aqua Teen) for a while before the legendary “LET’S TRADE PANTS” Panel, hosted by my good friend and occasional boss George Lowe (aka Space Ghost)

Comedy healing with George Lowe
Comedy healing with George Lowe

That panel was NUTS. George was pouring water on peoples heads and having random strangers swap pants in front of a huge crowd of people!!!!

AND THEY LOVED IT! It was a blast.

We also saw our buddy Howard and his son Ross, and went out for some FOX BROTHERS BBQ with Howard and his family.

Fox Brothers BBQ
Fox Brothers BBQ

P.S. Marta is INSANE after the college games let out.

First week of the college football season and I got caught in the Georgia Tech vs Alcorn St crowd AND the Auburn vs Louisville crowd………..

We had our annual Pig and Chick (Sp?) rally w/ Uncle George on Sunday (Food so good it makes you wanna SLAP YO MAMA) and I got to hang w/ a ton of my new friends:)

Oh man, it’s so pretty up there. Atlanta (and the surrounding towns) are really starting to find a home in my heart.

Great great EXHAUSTING times. 6 miles of walking a day (NOT counting inside the con) on 3 and 4 hours of sleep a night. Special thanks to MONSTER ENERGY DRINKS and STARBUCKS VIA coffee (as well as anywhere else I can find coffee…Gas stations, hotel rooms, stores, that giant plantation tourist trap off the interstate)

Breakfast of champions
Breakfast of champions

It was a WILD, CRAZY and BRUTALLY EXHAUSTING experience.

I also got contacted by a cool alt country fan who works at a radio station, received a couple job “offers” and did my usual thing for Savage-Turner.

That reminds me, I need to call Artix Entertainment. You guys don’t let me forget!

and somewhere in there I got some pictures signed for John Barrowman’s husband and Felicia Day ended up with a set of my buttons…….

I think that’s what happened this weekend? (all 5 days of it?)

Oh! and I saw a Chipmunk!!!

ummmmmm, if I forgot thing, for which I am sorry, it’s because mentally I’m still sleeping on the floor of a condo in Atlanta. hahaha

View from the room
View from the room
Our Table
Our Table

Oh gosh.

Im so tired

Here’s an individually wrapped hotdog in a rest stop vending machine for the road

Selection D2, for when you've lost the will to live
Selection D2, for when you’ve lost the will to live

Love you!
Someplace’s own,

HH

Ok, so, the wild and crazy month (plus some) recap

Alright, so, where to start.

I guess at the end of June…….?

So what have I been up to?

At the end of June, my good friend (and fantasy football commissioner) Chris and his kids came down from Ohio and we all went to SeaWorld, followed by one of my favorite past times, a minor league baseball game. We had a blast, and it really makes me miss being up north. Hopefully I’ll get back up there sooner rather than later.
At the very beginning of July, my buddies in the rock band SOCIALBURN reunited and played some 10 year anniversary shows around Florida. They’re absolutely KILLER live, and it was great to get to watch them play, as well as hang out afterwards. A Bill full of Tallahassee bands and they all kicked ass ๐Ÿ™‚

Shortly after that, My buddy BJ from American Aquarium came to town on a solo jaunt round the USA, and we got a chance to catch up, and I got to hear some DAMN fine “sad bastard songs” played by one of the hardest working guys in the industry. I also finally got a shirt for my buddy George (he’d been asking for one forever).

What came next?

Oh yeah. I got tickets to see Orlando City (you should all know by now that I’m a big Orlando City fan) play against West Bromwich Albion. That was a great time. I got to see England International and all around bad ass Joleon Lescott play, and there was a bucket full of goals scored. Which, you know, is always fun. (HOORAY CONFETTI CANON!)

Lemme check the calendar to see what came next

At some point during the month (the whole thing is a blur) I ended up picking up a new gig working for a Radio show called “The Savage-Turner Rock Express”, hosted by this fella Ric Savage, a former pro wrestler and star of “Savage Family Diggers” on Spike TV, and Erik Turner, the lead guitarist of the rock band WARRANT.

I can’t even remember everything that happened…

Somewhere in there, I hung out with my step brother who’s in the Air Force, as he’s getting ready to deploy again. We always have a ton of fun, and it’s just great to get the chance to sit down and relax with a best friend.

I’m sure I’m missing things….

There was another hang out trip, where I got the chance to go to and explore MacDill Air Force Base. That was pretty cool. They have a private beach on the bay! There was A Flock Of Seagulls gig on the list, followed by Tampa Bay Comic Con.

Comic con was a blast, but JESUS was it exhausting (DragonCon is coming, too)

I had the chance to hangout and have lunch with Billy West (futurama, ren and stimpy, Doug) who is an IDOL of mine, as well as a really nice guy, and Tom Kenny ( Spongebob Squarepants, Adventure Time) whos an absolute sweetheart in his own right. and of course, my buddy I see every week, George Lowe (Space Ghost, ATHF, Robot Chicken).

A HILLARIOUS group of guys if there ever was one, I spent three days running round talking music, werewolves and hats with those fellas.

I also had a chance to bust in on Freema Agyeman (Martha Jones on Dr Who) and got to briefly chat w/ Sand Snakes Jessica Henwick and Keisha castle-hughes (Game of Thrones)

AND I met the SWEETEST human being alive, the beautiful Lea Thompson (back to the future, Separated at Birth)
What an absolute pleasure.

Got to touch base w/ my artist buddy Nathan Szerdy, aka the guy who did my album art.
If you don’t know him, LOOK HIM UP! his shit is KILLER!
Plus a bunch of my friends came to visit me at the show!!! SO COOL!!!

And I made a few new ones, too. Here’s to you Danielle, Connie and Nick for keeping that nuthouse running!

Somewhere in here I did a ton of Fantasy Football research, practiced guitar, ate food and drank coffee, and tried to have a life.

THAT was all followed by our yearly fantasy football draft, which is ALWAYS a TON OF FUN (and shit talk) and ANOTHER ORLANDO CITY GAME vs Philadelphia Union.

My roomie scored tickets from his work, so we went out and had a blast, ate the best chicken wings EVER, and got ICE CREAM!

Lord, I don’t even know where I am right now…. More work to be done, more radio show guests to be wrangled, more friends to be helped, more new glasses to be broken in, more things to fix on my car….

OH!!!

and, the MASTERS OF MY ALBUM have started coming in!!!

THE ALBUM! FINALLY THE ALBUM!! THE WHOLE REASON IM INTO THE REST OF THIS STUFF!!!

It has been a BEAUTIFULLY CHAOTIC MONTH (plus the end of one and beginning of another) and it looks like it’s gonna keep on coming!

Now. to add some pictures!

Someplaces own,

HH

Audio. Complete-io?

So, the music has officially been sent off for mastering.

That’s it. No more tweaking. Tossing. Turning. Pulling my hair out, or falling into a sobbing heap in my bathtub whilst taking a shower.

It’s done and over with.

Well. All the mix elements anyway.

It’s as good as we can get it. I just hope I haven’t been spoiled having so much time to sit and reflect on a record.

It makes you a little bit crazy, but as long as you stay true to the vision, I kind of enjoy not having to rush things. Doesn’t make it perfect. Just makes you happy.

My wrists still aren’t fixed, i suppose they ARE getting better though. The vitamin B6 and the new wrist braces are helping out. Don’t tell anyone, but I’ve snuck off and played my electric guitar a few times.

SHHHHHHHHHHHH

Idk. I suppose that’s all for now. Eat less carbs, eat more greens, yada yada yada.

You know what you SHOULD do? Go listen to some new music. or old music. or ANY music. and ENJOY.

BECAUSE I SAID SO

Someplace’s own,
HH