Monday, June 27, 2005


I think my part in recording our album is now complete.

I went down to the studio Saturday night to spend some time on background vocals for Bombs Away and to put the finishing touches on Fallout Grace. Bombs Away turned out great... I resisted the urge to do too much and wound up just adding some nice high harmonies and textures.

Fallout Grace was a little more problematic. We set the bar high with some of the work we did on the bridge and third verse of the song, where I added up to 6 different background voices and two different counter-melodies. So I knew we needed something huge for the final chorus. I spent all week listening to the song, trying to figure out something to do... with no success.

So Dave and I put our heads together and... continued to have no success. After a lot of far-fetched and overreaching ooohs and aaaaahs, something clicked, and I tried interweaving the lyrics and melody from the bridge into the final chorus as a counterpoint line. Then I layered three voices over that line to make it sound like a choir.

And just like that we had it.

I think it sounds awesome, almost Rufus Wainwright. It was about midnight as we finished up Fallout Grace, and there was one more thing I wanted to do. I took Dave's old beat up classical guitar into the live room, sat on a stool near the vocal mike, and recorded a bare bones acoustic version of Bottle Boy that I think we'll use as a hidden track. It turned out perfectly. One take, one microphone... just me playing the guitar with my fingers (no pick) and singing.

I hope it works out that we can use it in the way I'd like to, as kind of a coda. We'll see. I thought I'd have a lot more to say about finishing up with tracking, but I need another day or two to get my thoughts and feelings in order.

In the meantime... don't stop rockin'.


Not Guilty

As I piloted Stevie, my trusty Volvo, up the Double Nickel late Saturday night, the Kelly Clarkson song "Since You've Been Gone" came on the radio.

I didn't change it. I rocked out to it. And reflexively checked the lanes around me to see if anyone had caught me rocking out to a sacchrine piece of crap. Relieved that the other late night drivers were seemingly busy talking on their phones, lighting their joints and doing any number of things other than actually driving, I set my mind to contemplating the idea of the "guilty pleasure."

Why did I feel guilty for enjoying Kelly Clarkson? Why do I feel ashamed for liking "I Believe I Can Fly" by R. Kelly? What about "Yeah" by Usher? What about Hanson, TLC, and Green Day? Why do I feel so guilty?

Other than my Jewish heritage I mean.

The whole idea of the "guilty pleasure" is so strange when you think about it, especially with respect to music. Why shouldn't I like pop music? Why should I feel like it's "uncool" to like a song or a band?

It boils down to having this sense that others might judge your taste as inferior because you happen to like something that is... unsophisticated or without merit. As defined by... the media? The general public?

Dunno. But the fact is, I know I can listen to music in more varied and sophisticated ways than most people, music critics included. I can listen as a fan, I can listen as a musician, I can listen (somewhat) from a technical standpoint, and I can listen from a business standpoint. 

So fuck the Kelly Clarkson-haters. I'm going to listen to whatever I want to listen to for whatever reasons I want to listen to it.

So there.

Just don't tell anyone I'm Jewish.


Friday, June 24, 2005


Well, the week's over. For some reason, everything has felt strangely disjointed lately. Not sure why. Not much going on this weekend other than the last (please oh please) backing vocals session and a graduation party.

And trying to stay out of the 100 degree heat.

We had a couple of pretty good rehearsals this week, and the new tune is coming together nicely. Still some work to be done on the arrangement, but everyone seems to be taking a pretty stripped down rock n' roll approach to it, which is working well. I've been writing a lot... lots of ideas, but very little actually finished. This whole "trying to write more directly" is hard. It's such a fine line between good, simple, direct writing and trite cliched crap... Or how did it go in Spinal Tap? "There's a fine line between brilliant and stupid."

But I think I'm getting somewhere with a couple of the songs I've been working on. When I have a song that takes awhile to finish, I can usually feel the progress. I can tell when I'm getting close to having something good. And one song in particular, tentatively called "Ark," feels like it's rounding into shape. All the music is there if not a bit muddy right now, and what really needs attention is the lyrics. I have some nice thoughts, a good melody, a strong chorus, and an over-arching concept... but I haven't been able to quite pin down what I'm after.

The first verse and chorus stands like this:

ARK These eyes don't shine like they used to But there's still some light in them These eyes don't shine like they used to But they remember when... (chorus) I'd carry you Through broken rain Until the waters broke And just the dirt remained

I like all of that... the sentiment is there but I think I need to live with the verse for a week or so to make sure there's not something else that might work better. Similarly, the second verse:

These words don't ring like they used to But somehow you still believe That this voice will sing like it wants to And that's enough to carry me (chorus) To carry me Through broken rain Until the waters break And just the bird remains

I like a lot of it, I'm just not sure if it's a good as it could be. So often, I write not by what I want, but by what I know I don't want. I know when things are wrong almost immediately, and I only know things are right when I know they're not wrong.

Wow that doesn't make much sense at all, does it.

Other songs in the works include: "Maybe," "The Losing Kind," "Wide-Eyed Lightning," "Orpheus Rising," and "Light It on Fire, Break it in Half," all in various stages on development. I feel like I'm close to a breakthrough with this stuff, and I think I'll have some good time in the next week to spend writing.

Oh, and I hate The fucking Eagles.


Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Just Smashing

So Billy Corgan wants his old band back. And he initiated the process of getting it back by taking out a reported $37,000 worth of newspaper ads in the Tribune and Sun Times this week. Billy's been into public displays of affection lately, even keeping an autobiographical blog on My Space

You go Billy.

Actually, I have to say I like Billy and lot of his music. Some of it is the fact that he's a tall goofy looking guy from Chicago with a weird voice who somehow became one of the biggest rockstars in the world. Now why would I identify with that?

Additionally, Billy seems to be the type of musician who does whatever he wants artistically and lets the people (and record labels) come to him. That's cool. So I found it amusing on Tuesday night to tune into Sound Opinions, a music talk show on WXRT in Chicago, and hear Greg Kot and Jim Derogatis (or as my friend Ben likes to call them, Greg Cock and Jim Derogatory) fawning over Mr. Corgan like he was the second coming. It was particularly ironic because Jim Dero has had a nearly decade long feud with Billy over a bad review of a concert to the point where Billy actually banned Jimmy from reviewing any SP shows for awhile.

Anyway, one exchange between the two went a long towards confirming a long standing suspicion I've had about today's rock critics. Billy was talking about how he has proven himself musically in the face of doubters, how so many business-types have said "This CD'll never sell" and it went on to sell millions. Mr. Derogatory jumped in and compared Billy's success at overcoming doubt to his own, using a time an editor questioned why he was reviewing a Pearl Jam show and not a Meatloaf show. 

Excuse me?

This screams that Mr. Derogatory wants to see himself as equal to a musician, wants to see what he does as somehow as risky and important as the art he reviews, doesn't it? I've always thought a lot of modern music critics write about music because they can't play it, and often carry that as a chip on their shoulder.

This wasn't (and isn't) always the case... Lester Bangs, Greil Marcus, Nick Tosches... all these guys to me are writers who love(d) music. Writers who happened to write about music. It's less about making subjective judgments about music, and more about providing the reader with background information to help him or her make the judgment... there's less a sense of "My judgment is the best one because I'M a critic."

De gustibus non disputandum est.


Monday, June 20, 2005

Load, Unload, Rock, Load, Unload. Repeat.

Busy busy weekend... a lot of music, food and family.

Thursday night, we rocked Deerfield. Boy, was Deerfield rocked. Or was that us? Who is the rocker, who is the rocked? I think Sartre said that. It's a fundamental question with which we all have to deal. Actually, in spite of a few technical problems, I thought we played pretty well. The weather was beautiful, the crowd was a little sparse but very receptive... good times.

Friday early evening we played at Taste of Randolph. I guess from the city festivals we played last year, I figured that we would be playing on a stage tucked underneath some train tracks on a side street. Wrong-o, dong-o, Captain Stupid. The stage was the largest stage we've ever played on. Just huge. The event was run by Jam Productions, a huge production company.

Basically, everything was huge except our performance. It was just one of those nights for the entire band. Tempos were off, notes were missed, I broke a string... of course it would happen on a giant stage in front of tons of potential new fans and the largest production company in the city. Actually, the audience didn't seem to notice. They flocked to Gina every time I announced we have had free CDs, and Gina reported people were really into us.

Silly people. My shortcomings were related directly to the fact that I was having trouble properly hearing everybody. I could hear myself okay, but the drums and bass sounded like they were down the street... so I found myself distracted, focusing on things other than my performance, then coming back to my performance in time to hear that I was not in lock-step with the drums.


But we got free beer, food, and the manager from Jam was nice and seemed to like us. And one of the organizers from the Sheffield Garden Walk was there and into it. So maybe I'm in overly-critical musician mode. And if it's one thing I've learned to do recently, it's to shake off bad performances.

By late Friday night as we were sitting around the fire in our backyard quaffing Goose Island Summer brew, I was over it. I'm looking at it as a learning experience for our Summerfest gig. Apparently, we're playing the largest land-stage in the entire festival, so dealing with the sound issues of playing the huge stage at TOR was good preparation for Summerfest. We'll refocus, rehearse and re-... lax. Hopefully. 

Saturday, I took a day off from teaching and went to the studio to try to finish up the last of the backing vocals. Close, but no cigar. I did knock out two tunes though, getting some nice stuff down on Revenant and Darkness, leaving only Bombs Away and a little bit of Fallout Grace. We are so damn close to being done with this album and it's really starting to gnaw on me... I need to get away from it, let Dave mix it, and come back with fresh ears. I'm starting to hear flaws that I know are not there... but when you hear something 500 times in headphones you start imagining mistakes and problems... you completely lose objectivity (if you ever had it to begin with).

Bottom line, it looks like one more session for backgrounds and my contributions will be complete. Saturday night, we went out to Athena in Greektown to celebrate my sister's boyfriend's graduation from a Master's program at Northwestern. Good times.

Sunday, we had the family over to our backyard for Father's Day. I felt incredibly mature and grown-up in that I got up, did the shopping for the barbecue, mowed the lawn, watered the plants, and power washed the house. Then I put together the meat for the hamburgers. Once company arrived (consisting of my mom and dad, Gina's mom and dad, my Grandma and Grandpa, and my sister and her boyfriend) I entertained and grilled up the food, while simultaneously power-drinking Heinekens. The only moment of trouble came when my mostly blind Grandfather almost fell down our back stairway.

Not good times.

I managed to catch him after two steps and he was none worse for the wear... but it was a scary moment. So now it's back to Monday again with a full week of the usual... Perhaps I'll sleep this week. Perhaps not.


Thursday, June 16, 2005

Popular Favorites

Well... the weekend beckons.

We were supposed the play an outdoor show in Deerfield last night, but the rain ruined it. So we'll play it tonight. Then we're playing The Taste of Randolph tomorrow night, which should be great. Seems like the weather will cooperate too, which is always an issue with these festivals. Last night was a drag because we packed up all our gear and drove up to Deerfield, just in case the show went forward... and today we have to do it again. It was good that we went up though, because even though it was raining, a few dozen people still came out expecting to see us and we were able to tell them to come back tonight. Should be fun.


On Tuesday and Thursday mornings such as this one, when I'm hanging out at home, I like to put on MTV and/or VH1 and check out their video countdowns, just to see what the kids are into. Or what large media corporations think the kids are into... or would like the kids to be into. And also the 18-34 year olds with disposable income.

You get the idea.

Anyway... I think it's a pretty interesting time for mainstream music. I approach this from the premise that there's always great music being made. What changes from time period to time period is whether or not good music is popular. And right now, a lot of popular music is good and a lot of good music is popular. Not all popular music is good, of course, and I'm not even saying that this "good popular music" is groundbreaking... but hell, Nirvana wasn't really that groundbreaking either: just great. 

Anyway... if you look at what's going on right now, it's encouraging. Coldplay, U2, The Boss, Foo Fighters, Audioslave, System of a Down, Weezer, Nine Inch Nails, Queens of the Stone Age, Beck... all have put out big albums that are selling well.

I don't even really like all of those albums... but it seems like all those bands at the very least care about their music, treat it like a craft... and operate on their own creativity rather than at the behest of their labels. Add to that bands like Modest Mouse, Bright Eyes, The Mars Volta and their ilk... bands that have previously put out music under the radar and have broken through to a bigger audience with their most recent efforts.

Very encouraging.

And the biggest wildcard to me, The White Stripes. Have you heard their new album? If the first single is any indication, it is even more dirty and low-fi than their last album... which is saying something. The fact that in the age of Pro-Tools and computer recording, a major label is willing to put out something that sounds like it was (and might well have been) recorded on a 4 track predating Sgt. Pepper's... you think that would have happened in 1997?

Add to that the rising (nay, exploding) popularity/artistic brilliance of anything Kanye West touches, Outkast, and the continued quality of Neptunes and Neptunes-influenced polished R & B/dance music... and Alicia Keys. Again, go back and look at what was popular in 1997... I'm even willing to give a measure of credit to the super-bubblegum of Kelly Clarkson and Avril Lavigne... at least somebody is trying to make it rock.

Failing, but trying. I'd take those two over Brit-naynay/Christina any day. 

If death were not an option.

That's not to say that there's still not a lot of crap that's popular. That will always be the case. But the larger trend towards a wide range of good to great popular music, I think, is pretty strong.

And the Burn Rome Burn album isn't even out yet.


Monday, June 13, 2005

Slouching Towards an Album

As predicted, this weekend was more or less mellow. Friday night was reserved for actually sleeping, which was a nice change. After a Saturday full of students, we headed out to dinner at Scylla, a seafood restaurant in Bucktown. The meal we had was so good (how good was it?) that the woman sitting next to us licked her plate.


Didn't even try to hide it, just picked up the plate and started going at it. Gina and I both had scallops over foie gras ravioli. So did the "plate licker." After dinner we met up with some friends and headed to Tuman's, f/k/a Tuman's Alcohol Abuse Center.

Tuman's is a bar in Ukrainian Village. It used to be my favorite dive bar in the city, with $1 beers, a beautiful old bar, a great jukebox, a pool table, and an old woman who sold pot brownies while running said pool table. Within the last year or so they've remodeled Tuman's, and while it's not the same dive it used to be, it's still retained the beautiful bar and comparatively cheap drinks ($3 Guiness, for example).

Sunday, I headed into the studio to do some background vocals. Dave and I managed to knock out two tunes, and I think the work we did on Fallout Grace was particularly strong. By our estimations, we've got three more tunes to do backgrounds for. After that, it's down to a couple of repairs and tracking strings and Dave will be mixing.

I've reached the point where I want the album done. I don't want to rush through the last, important steps... the vocals we patiently worked to lay down yesterday are awesome and they took Fallout Grace to another level. That's what we need to be doing right now, no doubt about it. It's just that... it's time to get the album wrapped and out the door and into the hands of fans. And to the business contacts we (and our management) have busted our asses to make using the EP.

My impatience also may be more fatigue too... I mean, tracking-wise as both guitarist and singer I've got double-duty, and I think it's beginning to wear on me a bit.

Not that I would trade it for anything.


Friday, June 10, 2005

Q and then U

Looks like a quiet weekend in store, but I know better. It's those weekends with no plans that sneak up on you and leave you a Monday-morning-wreck.

We'll see.

Will hopefully spend some time on Sunday working on background vocals in the studio... we're getting so damn close to being done, but we don't want to rush it. We want to make sure we have everything exactly where we want it. Some of the "clean up" stuff will include: a couple of bass overdubs, one drum part we'll retrack, a low-fi version of an old BRB tune to be used somewhere on the album, some string quintets... that kind of stuff.

 The fact that we started tracking last year has obviously been weighing on us... we'd have liked to have the album in hand for all these summer festivals. But when you read how a band like Coldplay, with nothing but resources and time, spends a year and half recording an album, you realize that the great bands take as long as they need to get the record right.

For a band like The White Stripes, that's 3 weeks.

For a guy like Peter Gabriel, that's 8 years.

For Burn Rome Burn, it's looking like it'll be about 8 months of weekend recording sessions.


Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Get Behind Me Wednesday

Midweek blues.

So little sleep.

Hot weather.

Had a brief, hot, but good... rehearsal (is that what you thought I was going to say?) last night. Worked on a new song, entitled "Bright Dark Times." I wrote it earlier this year and we just haven't had time to really dig in and start putting it together. By the end of rehearsal, we had a reasonable working version of it to play through, and had already added a few nice variations to the arrangement, something we're getting a lot better at. In this tune it came out of something as simple as both Doc and Barret hearing my phrasing in a different way than I intended, changing their parts, and everybody liking the resulting "mistake" better than the original way I wrote it.

 BRIGHT DARK TIMES Things are looking up but you said that yesterday Then it all blew up, then it all went away And in its place, the smoke's a memory The punchline to a joke that's on you Chorus: What you gonna do when they turn their backs on you? What you gonna do when they turn their backs on you? What you gonna do when they turn their guns on you? What you gonna do? And now the days turn into more than you can stand And every midnight lamp you burn marks you with a brand The ashes fall in time, the nausea comes in waves But if music's mercy than we'll all be saved Chorus Bridge: Hey Don't fade away Hey The night will turn to day Hey Don't slip away Hey Chorus

I like these lyrics... the chorus looks really stupid when written out, but it works much better when sung. I kind of pinched it from a Magnolia Electric Company tune. The song's about hope in dark places I guess...

To paraphrase David Byrne and a bunch of others: the greenest grass grows by the shithouse.


Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Blog, blog, blog

What day is it? Don't you hate it when that happens?

Kind of ran myself into the ground this weekend... shows on Thursday and Saturday, a full day of teaching on Saturday as well, and a studio session on Sunday. Add to that some nasty insomnia Sunday night, and I didn't manage to make it into work yesterday.

Instead, I slept with the hope of heading off fatigue-related illness, and watched the movie Sideways. Sideways was good. Maybe not as good as I expected, but still very enjoyable. It was one of those movies that frustrated me because I felt it could have been even better than it was. Paul Giamati was great, giving a very internalized performance similar to that of Bill Murray in Lost in Translation. One of the things I liked most about Sideways was that the director relied on showing the audience rather than telling the audience (Attention: Mr. Lucas!).

Plus, it really makes you want to go out and get drunk on wine. Our show Saturday at Double Door was good. The crowd was a bit lean, but I thought we played really well, and it was fun sharing a bill with our management-mates Buddy Nuisance, who are very cool people and a great band. Saturday felt like a nice transition point for us... we don't have any club shows booked for the summer, but have a lot of great festival dates. It'll be a chance to really dig into new material, play some outdoor shows, and regroup for a record release party in fall.

Sunday's recording session was another transition point in that I finished the last lead vocal for the album, the song Mermaid. I saved Mermaid for last because I felt like it was the hardest tune and would benefit from what I learned from cutting the rest of the album. It's also got the biggest range both dynamically and melodically of any song we recorded, which makes it doubly difficult.

MERMAID I opened my eyes to slumbering stars The wind wept with laughter, the ocean dreamt from afar Dreams of my trembling hands, your sweet mermaid face Framed by the lightening of this island place Chorus: The light from my window is brighter Than the light of the moon The light on your hair makes me a fighter But you're gone too soon You're the flame flickering in my heart Keeping hourglass time from the start Since you left there's been nothing by rapture and regret When darkness was spent, the night spirits gone We tripped over warm sand and cursed the new dawn It's calm to the west, and it's clear to the east But there's a storm in my heart as you crash into the sea Chorus I'll make my home where the water meets the land I'll plant my weary heart in the sand But I don't know where you've gone Taken by the sea's sweet song I'm out of touch, I'm out of place I've lost my head, I lost my face 
And I can't be alone

Mermaid is by far the oldest tune on the album... written in 2001. It's the only holdover from Blue New World that gets played regularly. It's probably the most important song to me because it was the first song that I wrote where I knew I had something special. I had written really good songs before I wrote Mermaid, but nothing quite as heavy, nothing as immediately and permanently effective (and affective).

The lyrics, I think, are both direct and poetic in a way I've never really been able to capture again. The structure is complicated but accessible. It's really a song about desire above all else. I knew we needed to get something special vocally for this song. It's my baby. So Dave and I really dug in and were persistent.

My voice was a little ragged from so many rehearsals and shows this weekend, but it translated well, and soon we were well into the tune and getting some great stuff down. It was funny because we worked in a circle for most of it. My first take was really simple and natural and Dave liked it a lot, but my voice just wasn't warm yet. As I warmed up, I also started overthinking and thus oversinging a bit, so we worked on getting back to the spontaneity of the first few takes.

When we got to the outro of the song, we faced some choices. The last passages have some really high notes I usually hit in my falsetto (or head voice) which packs a lot less punch than my normal chest voice. We weren't sure how this would translate onto the recording, if it would be too weak, etc. So I went for it full voice and actually hit the notes (high B-flats for those of you scoring at home).

Dave's response: "I didn't think you could hit those notes." Neither did I. But the full voice stuff sounded too strained. So I went back to falsetto and we thought we might double or triple up the parts for depth. But that sounded to fabricated to me.

So finally we settled on one track of me in my normal falsetto. I kind of think it's a little... daring to leave it like that. I only really have the confidence to do it after hearing some of Chris Martin's vocals on the new Coldplay album. He takes melodies into his falsetto (which is similarly airy to mine) with a gusto and I figured if he could do it, I could too.

It's interesting how sometimes somebody has to show you what you can/can't do... give you the confidence to do something you thought impossible or wrong. I guess that happens in all walks of life. 

Anyway, the lead vocals, pending final listening, are done. All that's left is some background vocals, a few little additional instrumental clean ups, and Doc's string parts. Then we mix and master and send it off for pressing. I think this whole weekend may have contributed to my insomnia the last few nights. Wrapping up the vocals, playing our last club show for awhile... it really feels like the "end" of all this material we've been working on for the last year and the beginning of a new direction.

So I've been awake, writing, trying to figure out what that new direction is. I think lately I've been overthinking my writing, trying to get too clever. I'd like to get back to what I captured in Mermaid. I'd like the band to work on playing simpler (not boring, just simple), on better and stronger melodies that are really the centerpiece of the songs, on words that connect emotionally without being butt-clenchingly simple or trite, on tight arrangement with cool subtle variations and savvy playing.

Of course a lot of this is already in our material and on the album. So I guess I'm really just talking about staying the course, continuing the try to write honestly and directly.

Let me just open up this bottle of Pinot and I'll get started.


Friday, June 03, 2005


I had this plan to do a big post on the state of popular music as I see it. Alas, sloth has reared its heavy, deliberate head. Actually, it isn't so much sloth as the fact that we played a show last night and I'm really dragging.

We played at Subterranean for the Barristers Battle of the Bands, a charity show featuring bands that have at least one member in a legal profession. I guess I sort of count. It was a fun show, albeit a little sparsely attended. We played well. And it was nice to have a "live rehearsal" in advance of our show Saturday at Double Door.

The Saturday show is shaping up to be kick ass. It got some good write ups in the local papers. It's four really good bands full of good people. We have a great slot. And I have this feeling like we've been building towards a colossal show for a bit. Our last group of shows has been really strong. Even the weaker shows have been good. And we rehearsed twice this week and had the show last night, so everything should be pretty tight.

Of course now we'll probably bomb. Speaking of Double Door, there's this article in the Sun Times today. I've been hearing rumors about this situation for awhile, so it's good to finally get it out into the press with all the real information. I hope the owners are at least able to get their extension for four years. Given time, they're smart enough and well-connected enough to come up with a contingency plan for the inevitable. Heck, the name Double Door is so big they could probably move the club almost anywhere and have success.

Of course I would have said the same thing about The Lounge Ax.


Wednesday, June 01, 2005

To Sleep or Not to Sleep

Been a strange, bumpy few days. Sunday, we went to a wedding. A second marriage for both participants. Very very bizarre. A good time though, which involved Heinekens, cigars, a limo ride, me singing "I've Got You Under My Skin" with an old school standards band, and a, uh, hurried cab ride home.

After we got back to the house, we met up with our tenant Dave in the backyard and sat around the fire. At some point, we noticed that Hendrix was limping really badly, not putting any pressure on his right rear leg. Not good. Alas, we weren't in any state to deal with it, so I carried him upstairs and we went to bed.

In the morning, we did a closer inspection and found a bloody contusion on his thigh. He still couldn't out any pressure on it, so we decided to go to the Emergency Care Vet Clinic to be safe. The Emergency Care Vet Clinic is a pretty horrible place. Injured animals, frantic owners... bad sounds, bad smells, people coming in with pets and leaving without them. Not nice.

But the staff was very good and professional. They took X-Rays, found no break, and found no evidence of any torn ligaments. They shaved his leg by the contusion, and found a pretty sizable bruise, so I suspect that he accidentally ran into the corner of the deck, or the stairs, or a stone. They also gave us an anti-inflammatory to help with the swelling.

Luckily, Hendrix is scheduled for his regular vet checkup tomorrow, so they said as long as he improved we could wait until then to have him inspected further. And he has improved every day, which is good. But the last few days have been spent worrying about him.

With a couple of rehearsals this week, two gigs this weekend, and a studio session, I could really use some sleep.

Alas, it looks like it's back to Insomnia-ville, a place I know well.