Back on the road, back on tour. I left 100 degree weather in L.A. only to arrive in 40 degree weather here in Minneapolis. Yikes! We have three days in the Twin Cities, should be a pretty good time. Its always nice when you can hang in one place for a minute. Friday off to Buffalo, then Newark, then home Sunday.
(I lied about another music post, I wanted to post about the shocking events of yesterday first)
Well it was a fine opening day for our boys in blue was it not? O-Dog hit for the cycle, Ethier crushed two balls after being moved around in the lineup, and the old nemesis Randy Johnson was shown to be the washed-up hack that he is. An 11-1 drubbing of the Giants? What more could you ask for? My father-in-law Dave was visiting the wife and I from Indiana. He works at a small radio station in Martinsville, IN broadcasting high school boys basketball games. Whenever he comes to visit he finagles tickets and a press credential to baseball games, Angels, Dodgers, whatever. This year we went to opening day at Petco and the Dodgers home opener yesterday. There were more people at Dodgers Stadium than I had ever seen, the fans around us were great, there was a party atmosphere as the boys kept piling on the runs, and everyone was having a good time.
After the game Dave went down to the locker room for interviews and I wandered around the stadium and gift shop. We didn't get in the car until around 5:30 or so. As we were waiting to leave at Gate 6 (Elysian Park and Sunset) I see Casey Blake and his kids pull up in the car to our right. I roll down the window and give Casey an "Atta Boy!!!" but he's not looking my way, instead he's looking at the truck to his right. I peer over to see what the commotion was and a guy had jumped out of the truck and was talking shit to another guy. I really hate to stereotype but both guys looked like Latino gangsters; wife beater, bald, goatee, baggy jeans, tats, etc. Pretty soon they start trading blows and I tell Dave "those guys are fighting!" So we both are watching the fight and within seconds I see one of the guys get stabbed and fall to the ground with blood gushing from his right side. The other guy jumps back in the truck and speeds off. Dave jumps out of the car and tries to get a look at the license plate but can't see it. He tells a rent-a-cop security person to notify the police because there's been a stabbing while I'm still waiting to exit. It doesn't take long for a crowd to gather and bike police to come on the scene. Before we hit the highway there's a ghetto bird in the air and by the time we get home its on the news.
This article from MLB.com claims the man suffered a non-life-threatening stab to the arm, but man, that wasn't the case. I'm afraid this article from the LA Times is much closer to the truth and lists the victim in serious condition.
I've never seen someone get stabbed before. It was a pretty dark way to end a great day. For some reason I'm really concerned that this guy pulls through even though I have no clue what the altercation was about or who he is. I guess when you get 55,000 people together some bad shit is bound to happen.
We're taking a break from the music posting. A friend of mine posted this on FB and I found it totally hilarious and totally true. (Its quite sarcastic if you don't catch on quickly)
1) Being gay is not natural. Real Americans always reject unnatural things like eyeglasses, polyester, and air conditioning.
2) Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.
3) Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.
4) Straight marriage has been around a long time and hasn't changed at all; women are still property, blacks still can't marry whites, and divorce is still illegal.
5) Straight marriage will be less meaningful if gay marriage were allowed; the sanctity of Brittany Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage would be destroyed.
6) Straight marriages are valid because they produce children. Gay couples, infertile couples, and old people shouldn't be allowed to marry because our orphanages aren't full yet, and the world needs more children.
7) Obviously gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.
8) Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country. That's why we have only one religion in America.
9) Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why we as a society expressly forbid single parents to raise children.
10) Gay marriage will change the foundation of society; we could never adapt to new social norms. Just like we haven't adapted to cars, the service-sector economy, or longer life spans.
I will still never understand why a lot of the same people who say we need a smaller government and our government shouldn't tell us what to do are the same folks who say our government should tell us who we can and can't marry. Things are finally changing in this regard for the better (see Iowa, Vermont).
As you may or may not have noticed, The Backbeat has been horribly neglected of late. Do you remember last year when I said I wanted to work my way back in to the jazz scene here in L.A. playing more creative music? Well mission accomplished. For the past two months my schedule has been packed with a variety of gigs, rehearsals, and recording sessions. I've started playing in fantastic drummer Gerry Gibbs' Thrasher Sextet as well as my buddy Cory's indie rock band Chlorform Days (boy oh boy does anyone keep up with their MySpace anymore?) and all sorts of music in between. There are a couple of great recording projects coming down the pipe that I'm excited about. After a dreadfully slow January this has been a fantastic year for music.
But my daily schedule is crazy, get home late from the gig, Milo wakes me up at 6 like clockwork, back to bed for an hour or so (maybe) before going to a rehearsal or session, an hour or so to relax with the fam then off to the gig. I have a few minutes here and there to satiate my Facebook addiction and that's about all of the computer recreation time I have. As a result, The Backbeat suffers.
But no more! The Backbeat is taking a new direction! It will be primarily focused on my music from now on. I'll stream a wide variety of stuff I've recorded as well as doing record reviews. I'm sure I won't be able to help the occassional political rant but it will be mostly music, starting this week. I have an awesome gig tomorrow night as a bandleader! The gig fell in to my lap last week, I'm with my long-neglected Bossa Nova group at L.A. club Spazio. I'm really looking forward to it and hope it will be the first of many for the band. Here's a track from our demo we recorded a couple of years ago, a cover of "Flor de Lis" by the popular Brazillian artist Djavan. Let me know what you think.