Monday, February 23, 2009


This weekend i had the pleasure of traveling to suburban Montclair, NJ to see my favorite artist, Ryan Adams, and his Cardinals perform at the Wellmont Theater. I went to see him with my mom and Jeff (her man). We're all big huge fans. Like totally listen to him every night fans.
The Ryan Adams love for me developed about 5 years ago. Every week about 10 of my friends would get together to watch the O.C. at Alex russin's apartment, he lived in the same complex as Decker, Chris Thomas, basically everyone would smoke weed besides me, and we'd watch and eat, then play nba live. On one of the season finales, they used Ryan's version of oasis' wonderwall to intensify the feeling. My jaw dropped. All of us were like, what the fuck is this? I went home and downloaded it that night. That cover was on Love is Hell pt. 1, a disc that i then went on to listen to THOUSANDS of times. it was my staple sleep cd. I never even gave any of his other records a shot. i didn't pay attention to him touring or anything. I did however buy Heartbreaker for my mom. My mom fell in love with Ryan, proceeded to get every record he owned and meticulously google search his name. It wouldn't be uncommon for her to bring up his romantic life in a conversation..." Ya know he's dating Parker Posey, fuck her, he's too cool for her." This was my mom i'm talking about. The epitome of cool.

Anyhow i'd say my love for his entire catalog fully developed upon moving to Richmond in 2006. I'd spend alot of time at my friend Kong's apartment who is quite the Ryan aficionado himself. If it weren't for him, i'm not sure i'd "feel" the man the way i do today. We would spend friday nights playing Madden and blasting these live bootleg sets that he downloaded that were just fucking phenomenal. It seemed totally ok for two middle 20's year old men to turn down bars and parties for a night full of video games, good food, coffee and ryan adams. We called that Men's Night. not quite a Manly Night, but fuck it, i wouldn't have changed a thing and to be honest i'd give up a portion of my monthly pay to continue that tradition. Kong has since moved to Venice,Ca and we keep in touch meticulously through blackberry messenger, mostly in discussion about you know who.

Adams is a musician who shines tenfold live vs. recorded in my amateur opinion. After discovering alot of his older albums through the songs i came to love on the live sets, my knowledge of his career and his influences grew vastly. I've seen him 3 times at this point in my life, once opening for Oasis, the other two being alone. There was an intense sense of urgency to see him on this tour, as he announced it will be his last with the Cardinals, and that he was quitting music for awhile. About a week after that announcement, ran a story saying "ROCKER RYAN ADAMS ENGAGED TO MANDY MOORE". wtf. i saw this coming. Adams posted pictures on his blog and i noticed her in one of them, actually lookin cool as hell but i was still slightly confused. So that happened.

We get to the show in almost perfect timing, take our seats in a nice sized older theater. After about 30 minutes the song "OOOH BABY DO YOU KNOW WHAT THAT'S WORTH, BLA BLA HEAVEN IS A PLACE ON EARTH" starts blasting from the PA as the lights draw. People screaming, i'm laughing. He proceeds to rip into "I See Monsters". i glance over at my mom who is somehow sobbing and i feel this full sense of joy, love, happiness, warmth all at once. it was some kind of explosion of sensory emotions. The atmosphere became totally euphoric and i was reminded why i listen to this man every single day. He played roughly 3 hours and was simply amazing. My mom cried almost the whole time. I made sure to pick up a sticker for everything i feel needed to be, computer, cars, etc. All in all i'd say it was one of the best live music experiences i've ever had and if you're reading this and somehow have the opportunity to see him before he disappears for awhile, please do so. i don't think he'll be gone for long, but you never know.

Saturday, January 31, 2009


I'm not sure when or how it happened in my life, but suddenly i've reverted my musical taste to the pioneers of my peering generation. I'd say it mostly started when i rejoined blacklisted last year. Nirvana was a staple in our van. I became fascinated with their rise and self inflicted fall, then found myself digging deeper into my childhood musical freedom. Deeper into the 60s, i rediscovered Led Zeppelin through the words of Stephen Davis' Hammer of the Gods. A book i recommend for anyone who has ever cared about rock and roll. That fascination then led me then to Guns N' Roses. (edit * i don't want to turn this blog into some type of guns n' roses worship situation, just sayin) I accrue all of that to my mom and step father Jerry. I remember our stereo components case had a glass door with a sticker from Appetite For Destruction. Mixed Tapes were huge for our family. They threw and attended parties frequently when i was a kid, and it was all about the new mixed tape. Jerry put a Guns N' Roses song on every single tape he made. Making the tape was a week long process. i remember sitting in my living room with a 5 disc player with like 5 different components attached and helping my mom and jerry make these tapes. They were great and i really wish i still had some of them. A family friend Mike was also big on the mixed tape and i remember his cd collection was so completely awe inspiring that when we would go over there to play cards i would often just sit on the floor looking through album artwork and discs. My Mom and Jerry took me to a ton of concerts when i was young. I saw Kiss in makeup twice. I have the money with Angus Young on it from the "Money Talks" tour. My mom went to see Aerosmith and GNR in 1988, in Philadelphia, the day before the video for "Paradise City" was filmed in Jersey. Hard rock is in my genetic makeup. Drug abuse and alcohol addiction are also in that genetic makeup, but i've been working on making sure that those never see the light of day.

A pretty funny story that might dive a little bit too deeply into my personal life is from about 1989. Id be five at this point. My mom bought me a Guns N' Roses t-shirt. I was really into them and Bon Jovi. I had a jean jacket, ripped jeans, and a bunch of pictures of bands that you could win at carnivals and fairs, in like terrible metal frames. I went to my dad's house for visiting on weekends. My dad, also named David, and my mom had separated when i was very young. He had a a few terrible addictions, one being the aforementioned Mr. Brownstone, and alcohol of course. The courts ordered, upon the divorce, that i was to see him on weekends. Some of these weekends included him getting arrested for intoxication in New Jersey, while i sat in the jail with the cops. Another not so hot memory i recall is getting to the beach, and my dad not having sun block, decided covering me in baby oil was the appropriate solution. I got some bad degree burn, and then my dad disappeared from the hotel room for several hours. I watched the NBA draft in agonizing pain. At the time i guess i thought my dad was getting food...So back on track here. I went over to his house for the weekend with the beloved GNR shirt on my back. My dad told me to take the shirt off.. I did, handed it to him and he then CUT IT UP RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME. He said "I DON'T AGREE WITH YOU OR YOUR MOTHER SUPPORTING THIS TYPE OF BEHAVIOR". i cried then shrugged it off. ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME? I was too young to understand the utter hypocrisy of this little situation but as i got older i figured all of that out.

It's funny how your family life can in one way or another shape the person you grow into. I grew up in a house that blasted music whenever possible. I stayed home on friday nights in high school occasionally to hang with my mom and sing our favorite songs at the top of our lungs. It was around this time as well that i got really into performing music too. As i type this entry currently, my mom is in the kitchen of our house blasting radiohead on her ipod while she ferociously prepares delicious cuisine for a dinner party we are hosting tonight. On the contrary when i entered high school, smoking weed and getting wasted became the cool things to do on weekends. I knew all too well what i was genetically destined to become. I stopped visiting my father when i became old enough to understand what a liar and a thief drugs had defined him to be. I found this little thing called straightedge then. That was 10 years ago this spring.

I bought Fargo Rock City by Chuck Klosterman last week. Shawn Foley put me on to Chuck during our last few tours. I think he read every one of his books on tour riding shotgun on the long drives. I'm only 15 pages in, but it inspired me enough to write this. you should read it.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Dancing with Mr. Brownstone...

Today is Steven Adler's 44th birthday. He's been depicted pretty accurately on VH1's Celebrity Rehab and Sober House as a non recovering heroin addict. Last week i watched the first episode in which upon entering the house, Steven is found with heroin and new and used needles. I don't want to go on some long rant about heroin use and lives being ruined. Yes i have personal experience with this but that's not what i'm trying to go for here.

Basically what I'd like to say is Happy Birthday Steven Adler, take a note from your old buddies Duff and Slash and stop dancing with Mr. Brownstone. Nobody wants to see you dead. Even though most people expect you to be, any day now. Prove them wrong, get your act together and get back to smiling behind the drumset.

Besides you played on one of the best rock and roll records ever.

Monday, January 19, 2009

who are you ?

I haven't posted an entry since i was in Japan. That does not mean i haven't been thinking about doing so. There have been so many events, life situations, transformations and daily dilemmas that i just couldn't get to jotting them out of my mind to blog. Well I've reaffirmed my faith in writing as a way of releasing after reading other "web logs". I've also decided that the ever popular "picture" posts (i'm SO guilty of this) are done for. I'm writing once a week. I'm writing about something. Personal, Open, whatever.

A little personal update for anyone who cares to know. I've recently returned to the state of my birth. The beautiful and legitimately freezing Pennsylvania. I've been staying with my family here for about 3 weeks now, working for the "family business" (doesn't that sound so mob like). I'm a field sampler for an environmental testing laboratory. To make more sense of those words, i sample stuff to a very specific method. A typical monday will find me at the Sewer Authority pouring "shit" into a small bottle, then returning that to our laboratory where several skilled "scientists" analyze and evaluate its contents. It may not be glamorous, but i actually really enjoy what i do. I get to travel around the great Keystone state to specific site locations. I've gotten good at waking up 30 minutes before my alarm, at approximately 6:40 a.m. My friends at Lakeview can concur that this is a truly monumental event in my life. Last month i was waking up at 3 p.m., zombie driving to starbucks with a boner. Now i'm doing that like 7 hours earlier!

In all seriousness though, it just goes to show you how crazy your life can be. You never know what can happen tomorrow. My last blog posting was from somewhere in Japan. I went to Japan because i played guitar in a hardcore band. Now i'm not bragging, but that's pretty fucking cool. Now i'm sitting in my kitchen listening to Led Zeppelin with a little bit of tea, taking a break from mentally planning out my schedule for tomorrow morning.

I've been thinking (for months actually) of trying yoga. I'd also like to do some more physically challenging activities. Maybe rock climbing. Without having to mention playing music, i will always be doing that.
See you next week.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008



LIVE IN JAPAN.We've been here for about 4 days now and we're having a great time. Spent two days in Osaka and that was awesome, met up with the Strike Anywhere dudes who are cool. The trip has been fun so far. We went to a sneaker store in Osaka that was essentially a dream come true. Old shoes , some worn some new, just whatever you could find, shrink wrapped. all different eras. mostly mid 90's stuff. george found an original pair of 25psi grey green air max 95 with original box for 50 bucks. that was so fucking cool. at a thrift store i found a misfits bootleg t-shirt from the mid 80's..super sweet. the people here seem so innocent. everyone is just happy and respectful. more updates to come but so far so good.