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A First Draft Excerpt From My Upcoming Book

I have more than 70 pages done of my first draft and more coming daily. This is why you haven't heard from me in a while.

So I figured I'd share some pieces I've written that have also appeared on my Facebook Page for The Little Blue Honda Tour.

Gigs are coming up in Chicago, along with a planned move back to home as, well, my home base.

Hope you enjoy.

 

Scenario From Touring

True story, Part One: Phil and his friend Serge, who owns the bar around the corner close the bar, then walk over to Phil's place, Serge has his suitcase. Phil leaves his friend sitting on the front porch drinking beer while he runs upstairs to pack and grab his guitar and some merch. Phil comes back down. They sit and drink beer until about 4am when their friend Mike drives up in his Cherokee to begin the weekend tour. Mike's driving the whole way to Washington D.C. today for a gig at 8pm. Mike is arriving after driving straight from Denver non-stop... 15 hours. Nothing could go wrong, right? They load up the luggage and beer. Serge and Phil drink through Indiana<what else are gonna do>and sleep through Ohio. They wake up in Pennsylvania. Mike is still alive and swilling coffee, singing tunes, and talking to himself. Beautiful part of the country and they're making good time.

 

Touring Scenario, Part Two: As Phil, Mike and Serge make their way into D.C., the traffic on the beltway is thick. Phil jumps in the backseat and pulls out his guitar to practice. Serge is driving now, Mike is so slappy from no sleep, he's in the wayback banging on his suitcase like it's a drum to Phil's songs. They make it to the house of the producer who brought Phil out<this is his third trip to D.C.>and have just enough time to clean up before scrambling to the show at Madam's Organ in the Adam's Morgan neighborhood. Jill Nado is the producer who first flew Phil out for some shows the year before, now she's putting him on the 2nd biggest morning radio show in town the next morning at 7am. She works for Fox Radio and News... and incidentally hates it, as she's an old hippy who goes to Burning Man every year.

Jill drives the whole crew, drops them at the venue and goes to park the car. They load in and Phil starts the show.

The show goes great, people buy CDs, and while Catfish Hodge, the next act is up playing, they proceed to take full advantage of Phil's free drink tab. Serge is hitting tequila, Phil and Mike, being Irish, are hitting the Jameson. Serge is taken by the jelly jar glasses the bar serves the beer in and wants to snag a few, Phil is touring the 4 floors of the venue, Mike is staggering from fatigue and whiskey. When Phil gets back from running around, Serge hands him and Mike each a jelly jar beer glass and says, "Here, put this in your pants." They do, and walk out past the door man. As they pass him, Serge says, "Let's go next door for some pizza." Phil forgets that he's sucking in his gut to hide the beer mug and says "Okay." The jelly jar beer mug pops out of Phil's waistline and smashes on the ground right next to the doorman, who reels around. Phil is looking up at the balconies on the upper floors pointing and says, "Holy shit, I almost got hit! Someone dropped their glass!"

 

Touring Scenario Part Three: After the broken jelly jar glass incident outside Madam's Organ where the music of Catfish Hodge was still wafting out, Phil, Serge and Mike went next door for pizza. Jill was still in the venue. The guys were lit up  like Christmas trees and needed food. The whole time, Mike had his video camera going. As they walked back over and stood in front of the bar eating their slices, Phil and Serge with backs to the street, Mike filming them, Jill came up behind Phil and Serge and said "I'm going to get the car." Immediately after she walked away, Phil asked Serge, "Hey, where's Jill?" Serge just shrugged. It's all on tape.

They decided to go inside and look for her, but the doorman wouldn't let them back in because they were all too drunk. Serge explained that Phil had just played in there, and the doorman said, "Ahhh, no."

Then Jill the producer pulled up with all the gear loaded, so they jumped in and everyone headed back to her place where she had set up an after party. Now in the music business, when a producer sets up a party with friends attending, you have to go. It's expected of you, and it's a networking opportunity. Also, a friend of Serge's from Chicago happened to be in town on business and he was gonna be there. So, they get back to the house... Phil and Serge nice and toasty, Mike toasty and tired from not sleeping for two days. Phil has to be on the radio show Jill produces at 7am, with something like a million people listening. Then he has to rehearse with someone from American Idol, who was also at the party, and had appeared on the same radio show. Part of the deal with the radio was that she got to sit in with him at the following night's gig and they'd promote it. Then the guys have to get to New York for a show at CBGB's Sunday night, and be back in Chicago Monday for a show. This was when the tour got really interesting.

 

Touring Scenario, Part Four:

At the party following his gig at Madam's Organ in D.C., Phil is having a great time meeting people, hanging with his friends Mike, Serge, Jill, and the newly arrived Bill. As 3am draws near, Phil is outside having a smoke when Mike comes out to join him. As they're standing there, Mike, who hasn't slept in two days and drove Denver to Chicago to D.C. nonstop, turns to Phil and starts berating him.

"What the fuck is wrong with you?! Do you have any idea how much I wish my music would provide these opportunities for me?! How lucky you are to be able to tour around playing music you've written, to make a living doing what you love... and you're going to be on the radio in four hours with a million people listening! What are you doing?! Partying away like it's no big deal! Fuck this!"

Mike opened the back of his Cherokee, pulled out Phil's gear, set it on the sidewalk in front of him, jumped in the truck and drove away.

Phil didn't even have time to respond, standing there completely dumb founded. He shook his head in disbelief, grabbed his gear and took it inside.

Serge asked, "Where's Mike?"

"Um," Phil stuttered, "he just drove away all pissed."

Jill chimed in, "and I can't drive you to the show, I have to be there in two hours."

Bill mentioned he had a rental and could drive.

That being handled, but with no idea as to where Mike went or if he was coming back, there was still the question of how to get to New York, to say nothing of getting home to Chicago.

Phil crawled into bed, to be wakened three hours later for his radio appearance.

 

Touring Scenario, Part Five:

After Mike drove away at 3am with no one having any idea where he was going, and he wasn't answering his cell, Phil and the guys awoke at 6am with a feeling that they'd been heartily run over the night before. Phil had an hour before he was to be interviewed and play live on a major radio network with the entire Washington D.C. metro area within earshot. Bill and Serge poured Phil into Bill's rental and they headed to the station.

In the Green Room, waiting to be called into the studio, they poured water and coffee down Phil's throat, washing down donuts and various pastries. He sat and warmed up his guitar and hoarse voice in the process. Then Jill the producer came in and told him it was time. He glanced back at Bill and Serge with a look of terror on his face. They both waved him on with encouraging looks.

"You'll tear it up, brother," called out Bill as Phil and Jill walked down the hallway to Phil's potential doom. He always felt like he was off to die right before an appearance of this level of importance. He's always had stage fright... performance anxiety?

Sure enough, however, his fear drove him to an outstanding performance of several of his songs and a lively interview.

The host praised Phil's songwriting, guitar playing and vocal skills. One more victory.

When they all returned to the house in Alexandria, Phil crawled back into bed. At about 11am, Bill came in and roused him.

"Phil, Mike's back."

Phil got up and came out, apologizing about being so reckless about his responsibilities the night before. Mike sloughed it off on his part as sleep deprivation. All he did was drive around the corner, park and crash until minutes ago. All was good again.

Shortly, the American Idol contestant who'd been on the same radio show previously, showed up to run through a couple songs she was going to sing to Phil's guitar accompaniment at that night's gig. The party began early, but this time, also ended immediately after the show. Mike, Serge, Phil, and Bill were all off to New York City the following morning for Phil's show at the legendary CBGB's. This would be his second appearance there. They'd asked him back after his first one, spurring this whole trip.

 

Touring Scenario, Final Episode:

As Mike and Serge traded driving duties on the road to New York City, Phil napped in the back, intermittently waking up to crack a beer and practice for the show that night at CBGB's. Bill had gone on in his rental car to continue the business he was out there to do.

They arrived with plenty of time to get settled into their hotel, a classy old place from the 2O's that sat under the shadow of The Empire State Building. Phil had gotten the room online for $1OO... a steal for anything in Manhattan. The room had a bed, a couch, and the floor; where Phil, Serge and Mike would all sleep respectively.

While Serge and Phil took the gear up to the room, Mike went to park... no easy task. However, it was no time at all before Mike came parading through the door.

"Found a spot right out front, but I have to move by 9am or it gets towed."

They all relaxed for awhile, drinking beer and smoking cigarettes. The room was non-smoking, so they opened the window.

When it came time to head to the gig, they all grabbed a piece of equipment, took the elevator to the lobby and asked the concierge to hail a cab, which they took to the venue.

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