Hippie thoughts!

So, the good Reverend and I were having a meal of food yesterday at our designated lunch time, and he told me that he had watched the film Dances with Wolves over the weekend.  In our opinion, this film is quite badass and still holds up today.  I immediately started thinking about how badass it would be to in the rolling hills of the American frontier with nothing but a cabin/house/whathaveyou with the obvious items needed for survival.  Jokingly, but sorta true, I also suggested my Kate Winslet with some water based lubricant be included in my survival essentials.  After blasting that joke, I really did start to think a bit more… What the hell would I really want to take if I were to have, let’s say a 2 month excursion out where Lt. John Dunbar, Dances with Wolves if you will, kicked back with two socks and the Sioux American Indians?

That’s the thought that was on my mind most of yesterday.  It really excited me, to be honest.  Not in that way!  Wait… yes in that way too. DAMN YOU, KATE WINSLET!

Jokes aside, I think I would really enjoy that time out in nature.  I wouldn’t have much of a problem because I’m a loner anyway, and I’m really a nature-hippie at heart, so I think I would have a lot of fun.  All that I would really need would be about 3 or so 500 page college ruled spiral notebooks of paper, about 4 pens, and about 10-20 books to read.  I think I would really have a great time getting up, getting inspired by the landscape, writing stuff out, reading during the middle of the day, probably writing more towards the end of the day, and repeating that for 60 days.  F yes.  That’s awesome to me.  If I ever become rich, I’m setting this experiment up.  Who would stop me?  I wouldn’t have any debt to worry about… if I still worked, I’d take that time off, or kick rocks with the gig altogether… It would be me, baby Jesus, and the joint our ol’ man created for 60 days of fun times.  A mind cleansing that, in my opinion, we all need.  Your thoughts?

Well, signing off… i’m Tipping Toes.

Adventures in and out of Dreamland

I thought for this blog entry that I’d share my strange experiences in the adventure of sleep and consciousness over this weekend.  I really don’t know what the fuck it was, but I really wanted to nap the hell out when I got home from work on Friday afternoon.  I usually get home around 4:35 from work, which I did on that day, and I was in bed by 5.  I was thinking that I’d nap it out for a good two hours, which is my customary length my brain needs to recharge on a nap, but instead I found myself waking up at 9:30 really rested, yet confused as to what the hell had happened.  I was fucking Rip Van Winkle!  It was pretty wild.  I felt like I should have been awake for something, although, I really couldn’t figure out what that something should have been. 

As I’ve stated before, I really don’t have any kind of life aside from my local gym visits, MNF at Studio 6b, band practices, gigs, and the rare occasion I decide to go hit golf balls out at my favorite golf course.  Don’t feel sorry for me because I actually prefer my life that way.  Wait a minute.  Fuck it!  Feel sorry for me that I’m an antisocial shut in.  LOL.  Life just works out better for me that way.  I’ve always been like that, to be honest.  Strange, I know.

Anyway, back to my tale from this weekend, 9:30 came along, and I kinda felt like I was missing out on something.  After realizing that I really didn’t, I got to catching up on things, mainly twitter, to get some laughs.  The hours passed, and before I knew it, it was 5am.  Where the hell had the time gone?  More importantly, why the fuck was I awake in the first place?  I could understand if I should have been in the crowds at some bar getting intoxicated like everybody else does in this city, then making that late night trip to Whataburger (still way the fuck better than In n’ Out, Rev), Chicos (if one made it with enough time), TC (like some chick at the Wells Fargo I used to go to daily with my previous gig called it) aka Taco Cabana (I prefer this.  Sounds 99.7% less douchebag than fucking TC), or one of the diner chain joints… but nope!  I was at home, in my room, staring at Krayshawn chief it up on UStream, and uploading Searchlight Needles shit onto my YouTube account.

So, 5am rolls around, and I decided that being awake all night for no good reason should come to an end.  I passed out, but for some God unknown reason, there I was again awake at 7:30ish.  My brain decided to be an asshole and give me a two hour nap instead of a full sleep.  Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, fucking brain!!!???  Fuck it, I was awake, so I went ahead and acted as if I had slept all night and got to wasting my day in delight as usual.  I was, however, waiting for my 14 day early birthday present from Control Industries… my new Steel Panther merch.  I also had to go to Little Dude’s birthday party, so I was hoping that Mr. Postman would hit up my domicile early enough to go to the festivities.  Thankfully, homeboy did, so I was out to Charles Entertainment Cheese’s empire of pizza for some fun times trying to piss off the Pentecostal Christians.  Fun, fun, fun!  I went light on the asshole though, and wore my Star Wars Galactic Empire logo shirt in all black hoping that they would start shit with me.  It was only because I was the uncle of the kid we were there for that they didn’t start shit, the fuckers.  The entire time I was there I was fucking sleepy.  I knew why, but what the hell?!  It was my brain’s fault for being an idiot, right?

In the cool moment of the day, I was able to hang out with my cousin, who for the time being lives in Colorado Springs.  I really miss her.  She’s a badass.  She’s always been the second rebel of the family.

Well, sleep be damned, but I hit up my uncle’s house to hang out with her and my other cousins after laundering my new Steel Panther shirts and wearing one to the house.  I was exhausted, although I had two 30 minute power naps, but this was the last night my cousin would be in town, so I had to nut up and go.  Good thing that I did too.  We had a good time, but there I was, passing out while attempting to watch a really kick ass film. 

I made it home at 2am, and promptly went to sleep.  I was thinking that I’d pass the f word out until around 10 or so, but nope!  8am and guess who’s awake?!  My dumb ass.  What the effing fuck, man?!  It was at this point that I was thinking something was up.  First I had hypersomnia, followed by a fun case of insomnia and now I was just fucked.  Strange times.  Well, I decided to roll with it and I did for a good 3 hours until Mr. Sleep started tickling my bathing suit area and I was out again at noon.  Horrible.  Thankfully, I only passed out until 2, but when I did wake up I was tired as hell.  All I wanted to do was sleep, but I knew I had to hold out until at least 8pm.  I don’t know how, but I did it.

At this point, I started playing Dr. Dickhead and began to self diagnosing my problems, where I figured out that yea, I had hypersomnia, insomnia, followed by narcolepsy, then a bit more of insomnia, and now it was just fucking space madness.

I passed out around 9, but the fun didn’t end there.  I woke up again at 11!  Another What the French, Toast moment!!!  I said fuck it and put on another podcast and called it a night for the remaining 4 hours of sleep time I had.

I’m now hoping that this craziness is over with.  Not that I don’t like to sleep, but for fucks’ sake!  Not like this, I don’t like sleeping.  As it is, I have a hard enough time to remember what the hell day it is… I can only imagine how out of it I would be if this sleeping madness would continue.  Looks like I’ll find out tonight!

Metallica and Steel Panther

“I was never that young.”

“No, you were younger.”

Chekov and Captain Kirk aboard the USS Enterprise – B

Those were words I thought about this morning/early afternoon while watching Metallica’s Live Shit concert from San Diego.  I remembered why I have been a fan of theirs since 1991.  These guys were so full of energy, life, and that bit of “fuck you” attitude that fit in perfectly with everything that I needed growing up.  It wasn’t fun sometimes growing up short and fat.  LOL!  I suppose that’s why I have my comedy with that little sense of contempt and hatred towards a lot of things.  I needed to build up a tough skin and funny shit and Metallica were my building material.  Everybody that knew me back in the day of my late elementary, middle, then high school days always remember me wearing a Metallica shirt.  Hell, at one point, I think I remember counting having 16 Metallica shirts in my closet to wear.  I grew up with them, shared the high points, the napster situation, the near breakup when Jason decided to call it a career, the St.Anger era, and with the new life that Death Magnetic brought.


Something strange happened a few years back, though.  My complete love and devotion for the band started to fade a bit around 2009 though.  I really can’t say why.  I’m trying to think when it was that Steel Panther was beginning to become the band I’d gravitate to.  My best guess was the trip I took to Salt Lake City to visit my best friend, Joe.  For some insane reason, Steel Panther was playing for the city’s free concert series in downtown and by happenstance I was up there on my vacation.  Joe really hadn’t heard of them and I only really had stuff from the Metal Shop/Metal Skool days as Feel the Steel was to come out in October of that year, so I played the few tunes I had on my laptop, we heard “Community Property” on one of the rock stations up there, and we went to the gig.  It was fucking BADASS.  Hearing tunes like “The Shocker”, “Death to All but Metal” and “Community Property” was made even more hilarious due to the fact that this was motherfucking UTAH that this free outdoor concert was happening at.

So, yeah, it really was that point for me that Metallica was finally retired from the top of my music mountain.  It was one hell of a run.  1991-2009 would be anybody’s hell of a run.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ll still throw down to Metallica, wear my shirts, watch the various DVD/Blu-Ray’s, but I think I can comfortably paraphrase Lars Ulrich when he talked about seeing Jason’s Echobrain in ‘Frisco and say “Metallica is the past.  Steel Panther is the future.”  I never thought I’d say that.  Another thing I never thought I’d say, but have you heard their album with Lou Reed entitled “LuLu”?  That was a huge pile of terrible dog shit.  I know a lot of other people feel the same way as shown by their chart record.  Strange how life changes sometimes, huh?

Tama: A love story

So, I was trying to think of something to blog about today, since I seem to be in a writing mood.  Well, I guess aside from “I really just want to nap it out” mood, I’m in a writing mood.  Problem is, I couldn’t think of anything to write about.  Thanks to Ms.Victoria, I have an idea!  My love of Tama Drums.  I’m sure nobody that will happen to read this will give one single fuck about what I’m going to say, but I find it my more than half my life love affair fun to write about.

So, here it goes, good or bad, this is my love story with Tama Drums:

I suppose that I could say that my love affair with Tama started along with my blooming love affair with heavy metal.  My favorite drummer when I was starting my metal journey was Lars Ulrich.  Yes, Lars fucking Ulrich.  I thought he was a badass!  The coolest thing I noticed though, were those badass Tama white shelled, black headed drums.

Lars Ulrich in the 90's

Holy SHIT those were badass, and I must admit, homeboy has lost a step and crutched onto his fucking china (which is a reason I will NEVER get that shit), but back in the day… 1987-1993, dude had it.  Hell, I would have some big time fun right now if I had a kit like that.  Double bass, 6 tom’d Tama, and about 5 Zildjian cymbals around me…  YUM-thefuck-O!  Anyway, where was I?  Ah yes, my love affair with Tama.  Well, yeah, that started it.  As I started to pay more attention to drummers and what they were playing, I was finding that all of my favorite drummers were playing Tama.  To name a few that I was rocking out to:

Vinnie Paul! (even though he switched to Pearl and now DDrum)

Songs I recommend to listen to of his: (with Pantera) Cowboys from Hell, Becoming, Revolution is My Name (with Hellyeah) Hellyeah, Goddamn, Rotten to the Core, Nausea (with Damageplan) Breathing New Life, (with Rebel Meets Rebel) Rebel Meets Rebel, Get Outta My Life, Time

Raymond Herrera

Songs I recommend: (with Fear Factory) Demanufacture, Smasher/Devourer, Digimortal, Slave Labor, Drones (with Brujeria) Pito Wilson, La Migra, La Traicion, Marcha De Odio, El Desmadre

Mike Portnoy

Songs I recommend: (with Dream Theater) Take Away my Pain, The Dance of Eternity, Finally Free, The Glass Prison (with A7X) Nightmare, Welcome to the Family, Fiction

So, yeah, as you can tell if you took the time to listen to some of the tracks I mentioned here, I was really influenced to rock out pretty hard.  And, yes, my little fat nerd dorky ass was in band all through middle school and in the drumline/band in high school (snare line!  Holler and whatnot!!!), so I wasn’t coming at my love of these drummers as some dickhead that didn’t know any better.  Same goes for my obsession with Tama.  I was playing Yamaha and Pearl in high school.  If only Tama Marching Drums had come out back in the day!  That would have been BADASS!!  Check ‘em out if you wanna nerdgasm here —-> http://www.tamamarching.com/

Lucky bastards that get to march Tama.  Anyway, now that I’m trying to let my jealousy subside, I can move along in my story.  There’s really not much to say after I graduated high school and stopped playing drums for a bit.  Not by any choice of my own, mind you, but my best friend (hell, dude is my more than a friend… I consider him a brother) Joe moved up to Salt Lake City.  That dude was my musical connection.  He played bass on his off time and in jazz band (where I was playing in as well), so after our jazz band practices were over, I’d get back on the set (I was usually happy playing toys and whatnot except when we’d play Beatles songs.  I insisted on being on the kit for those) and we’d jam out Metallica, much the annoyance of our band director.  We didn’t care.  We had fun, and so did the kids shuffling through the band room.  We had a wicked bad mosh pit going on playing “Fuel” once. That was my first taste at really playing more than marching/concert/jazz band for anybody, and getting that positive reaction to it really geeked me out.  Well, yeah, Joe had to move way up north, none of my other friends played, so I was stuck.  Life moved ahead, it was all good.

Things changed about 6 years after high school.  By then, I had a shitload of interesting life experiences, and I had also finally been able to go up to Utah to kick it with Joe instead of him always coming down for the holiday season.  His brother Dan was a drummer too, so one time, we went down to the basement of their parent’s house and jammed.  I was rusty as FUCK!  I admittedly sucked worse than I do now (that’s saying a lot), but it was fun just to play again.  We thought drinking was a bit more fun anyway, so we only jammed about 20 or so minutes and went back to Joe’s house and got hammered… more fun times.  Haha!  But that really sparked my love back to my drums.  By then, shit had settled down with Searchlight Needles and the band came back together from their lives’ journeys and they were playing again.  Reverend Gonzo had asked me to join a few times, but each time I was broke as fuck (that seems to be the story of my life, by the way) and I’d have to turn him down.  They didn’t gig much until about 2008.  That’s when life changed for me as well.  My mom was getting progressively more and more ill, and in June, she passed away.  As fucked as that situation was, one good thing came from it.  I was able to reconnect with our cousin, Peter.  Dude was always into crazy music and styles, and I always looked up to him.  I didn’t get to see him much because of his life travels, but he had calmed down and came over to the hospital to see my mom.  We got to talking and he asked if I was playing in any bands.  I told him the same tale of woe… I was broke, and now that I had friends in bands, I was fucked.  Long story short, he invited me to play with him and his boss.  They had a drumset.  All that was missing was a bass drum pedal.  I get one of those, and I’m in.  Well, fuck yes!  That was badass!  I wasn’t going to turn that down.  We first jammed out on a Saturday afternoon, and I’m pretty sure the other guys probably thought I wouldn’t be able to drum worth a damn.  To be honest, I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to either.  We were going to play 50’s-70’s rock, country, and tex-mex/cumbia/ stuff, which is what I grew up on, so I was down to play whatever they threw at me.  Needless to say, I passed the audition, and I was in a band again.  I took shit a bit more seriously by then, so I was saving up to get, what else, a Tama!  Well, we were gelling as a band so well, the guys booked a gig and I was forced to get another drum set quick.  No Tama for me.  It’s all good!  Nobody gets a Cadillac for their first car, unless they are fuckin’ Justin Bieber or somebody like that.  I settled for a Mapex.  It served me well.  We played a lot of gigs and a lot of people loved us, but tensions between my cousin and his boss got the better of things and my cousin and I walked away.  Again, I was bandless, but with a drumset.

Things weren’t looking much better in the Searchlight Needles camp.  The band tensions were getting pretty bad there too, apparently.  I went to a birthday gig on a February, got the birthday twink drunk as FUCK!  (nothing beats seeing that idiot run to the bathroom to bark at the ants while the band kept playing!  Hahahaha!!!!) and well all had fun.  There might have been another gig or two, but their drummer finally called it quits pretty much.  I had nothing to do, and had a drumset, why not, right?  I had these assholes give me assurances that they were not cheating on their drummer, and when we first played together, magic happened.  In another moment of admission, I had been to gigs and practices of these dudes and thought to myself, “Fuck man, I would love playing this song.  I’d play this instead… I’d do this…” and now that I was getting the chance, shit was fun!  Granted, I was crashing planes (aka not ending songs when I was supposed to), but what the fuck, man!  I need to practice shit and gel before the real magic happens!

Well, fast forward to early this year when out of the blue, we decided to record the 10 original songs that we had.  I had my drums all tuned up badass, aside from my snare that I could never really get right… and we recorded.  That’s what you hear now on ourstage and my YouTube page.  Sadly, I recorded on my Mapex, because again, I’m a poor son of a bitch.  The dude that recorded us, Professor X, wasn’t happy with the sound of the drums, but worked some black magic on the sound, so I don’t sound as shitty as I should, but in retrospect, I hate the way I sound.  During the mixing and mastering though, I got crazy and decided, fuck it!  I’m getting the drumset I really want.  By then, Tama had just released their new line, Silverstar.  Reasonably priced, badass looking and sounding on the vids on the site… I couldn’t turn down the opportunity to buy them on credit that I was approved on with Sweetwater.

This was the best decision I’ve ever musically made.  Well, that and joining the band.  Heh.  Right out of the box, they played fucking amazingly!  Normally stock heads sound like dogshit, but even with Tama heads these things blew my mind.  I couldn’t wait to play with the guys.

Our first practice with my Tama drums was crazy.  I was actually LOUDER just with the quality wood that my shells are made of and the pure craftsmanship that Tama is made of.

So, now here I am, 7 months later… still madly in love with Tama.  Even more so now.  It’s like having that crush in high school and finally getting with that person when you’re damn good and ready years later.  I’m glad I waited.  I love the sound I have with them, and they are just going to get better whenever Drums, Etc. gets off their fucking asses and send me my Remo heads!  That’s the only drumhead I will play too, by the way.  I’m a man of principal.  Until I die, or become too crippled to drum, I will only play Tama drums with Remo heads all while hitting Zildjian cymbals.  Why, you ask?  Because they are badass.  That’s love.