Welcome to the Sound and Light Show

Sort of a diary for myself ... but you can read it too.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


I've left my house 3 times in the last 15 days.

Yup ... going a little stir crazy.

I've had a handfull of visitors, read one book, played a lot of piano, taken plenty of oxycontin, watched 8 good netflix films, watched too much bad tv and played a ton of xbox to help pass the time.

I also designed the flyer for the next show I'm promoting and arranged promotions in all of the local papers:

oh ... and I also did a little bit of work work.
I have an appointment with my doctor next week (5 days from now). Hopefully I will be told that I'm allowed to start driving again.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Visiting hours have now begun

Today I had my first visitors over since my surgery last week. 'Clover', 'Schaf' and 'Litl' stopped by for a few hours. They brought me a case of Heineken, a beautiful bouquet of 'Get Well Soon' flowers and a 'Freedom is not Free' lap blanket from the Vets. Awesome! Thanks for thinking of me!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Post Surgery

My anterior cervical spinal fusion surgery was on Wednesday. I passed with flying colors. The surgery was a success; the two herniated discs that were touching my spinal cord were removed and I no longer have pain in my left arm. I was out of the hospital and back home by Thursday evening, a day earlier than expected ... of course, I'm in a huge amount of pain, all over my body, but that is expected. I'm also a bit loopy as I write this since I'm on a pretty steady dose of Oxicotin.
There was a little problem during my 'coming to' after surgery though. As the doctors were removing the breathing tube from my lungs and bringing me off of the anesthetic, my lungs filled up with fluid. I was told that this doesn't happen too often but basically as I was waking I felt like I was drowning. Every time I took a breath my lungs would just fill up. I would choke the fluid out but then gasp for another breath and again, lungs full of water. It was pretty intense since I was just coming to and didn't have any idea what was happening. The doctors had to hold me down as I panicked ... I remember blood gushing from my nose from where the breathing tube was pulled out ... I was injected with something to calm me down as the doctors just kept shouting at me to cough up the fluid or swallow it or spit it out ... they also shoved a suction hose down my throat to help remove the fluid. This went on for about 10 to 15 minutes; me just coughing and coughing ... like I was just dunked in a pool and choking on water. It took most for the day before my lungs were finally cleared. I had to wear an oxygen mask for close to 24 hours.
Anyway, now I am at home, 3 days since my surgery ... bruised, swollen and sore all over. I have to wear neck brace for 6 to 8 weeks to protect the spinal fusion and I am not allowed to drive for at least 3 weeks. Not much is going to be happening on this end for a while but that's cool with me. I'm tired and beat up and I need some rest.

Lobotomy Scars or Alien Abduction markings?

"The Force is strong in this one ..."

Monday, May 12, 2008

Detroit DJs

I also went and saw Rick Wilhite perform at the AVA Lounge this weekend. Iwas joined by 'Mr. Jones', 'C.A.' and countless other friends.

Rick Wilhite is a veteran in the Detroit electronic music scene. His collaboration with the group 3 Chairs (with Kenny Dixon Jr aka Moodyman, Theo Parrish & Malik Pittman) along with his stunning, but too rare, releases makes him one of the most sought after Detroit DJs.
Rick, along with 3 Chairs, has played at countless venues around the world, mostly at the most prestigious clubs and festivals. Rick also owns and operatea the legendary Vibes New And Rare Music record store in Detroit. Additionally, Wilhite has worked alongside many electronic music pioneers, such as Juan Atkins and Derrick May. Rick Wilhite’s sets are simply unforgettable; his skills paired with his amazing sense of music are a journey into the deep sounds of Detroit house.

The place was packed and there was a great vibe with people dancing and getting into the groove ...

... dispite the fact that 'Brotha Mike' fell asleep during Rick's set.

2 days and counting ...

... until my surgery. The idea of it all is finally just setting in. I really haven't had time to think about it over the last few weeks because I've been so busy.

All last week I hosted two coworkers of mine from Germany here in Pgh. We had to attend a Steel Makers Technology Conference that my company was a part of. Every waking minute was spent with them either eating, drinking, working at the Convention Center, driving them around, shopping, site seeing, etc. It was nice having them here because it kept my mind off of what was happening to me this week but it sure was exhausting.

I also had a friend from college stay with me over this last weekend who was in town on business. We got to go out to eat with friends and do some catching up.

I really haven't had any time to myself in the last few weeks. Probably a good thing.

Now I'm sitting here thinking about what I have to pack for my stay in the hospital. Thinking about what I may need at my house during my 3 week, no driving, recovery time. Of course, I know I'll have friends and family that will be able to take care of me and go out and get things I may need ... I'm just thinking too much trying to prepare myself. I'm also going a hundred different directions trying to prepare my company for a temporary hiatus; making sure I can leave the office unmanned for a few days or weeks, etc.

I've also been very busy playing and recording new music with friend; something that is very new to me. The playing of music is not new ... but the recording for a professional album is. My friend, who is currently signed to a UK record label, is working on a few new albums and he needs keyboard/piano on a few songs. He has enlisted me to drop some keyboard riffs on a few of his songs. Pretty amazing stuff and very interesting on how we are recording between his home studio and at my house through my laptop ... but that will be saved for another post all together.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Van Halen, Pittsburgh (Finally)

The curtain rose as the band jumped right into 'Pretty Woman' while Dave screamed to the crowd 'Better late than never. Right, you motherfxckers?!?' alluding to the fact that the show was postponed since March. From that point on I had chills for most of the night; It brought back so many memories hearing and watching those guys. Dave was super cheesy but I got used to it ... I started to see some of his 80's antics, that I remembered and loved, still creeping out from behind his shaved chest, short hair and marching band costumes that he's into today. Eddie and Alex were spot on ... no complaints there. It was great to see them so happy, laughing and smiling and getting along. Dave yelled at Eddie once for jumping into a song too early saying, 'Damn, are you in a hurry tonight?' but they all just had a chuckle. Dave forgot lyrics but Eddie didn't mind ... and there were some feedback issues that Dave kept complaining about, getting testy with the sound guys, 'They paid for a show, not for feedback ... fxckin' fix it.' Yeah, Diamond Dave was dropping F bombs the whole night; it kind of felt like the aging rockstar was trying to still seem so cool complete with his continuous sexually promiscuous jabbering during and between songs all night long. But the vibe on stage seemed very light, super fun and super tight; it genuinely looked like they were having fun performing together ... and that's all I could ask for.
Overall I loved it. I had seats in the upper section, center stage, and the crowd around me was a 'sit down' crowd but I didn't mind. I was able to fully watch everything on stage with no distractions.


01. You Really Got Me (from Van Halen, 1978)
02. I'm the One (from Van Halen, 1978)
03. Runnin' With the Devil (from Van Halen, 1978)
04. Romeo Delight (from Women and Children First, 1980)
05. Somebody Get Me a Doctor (from Van Halen II, 1979) w/ a bit of The Who "Magic Bus' Jam
06. Beautiful Girls (from Van Halen II, 1979)
07. Dance the Night Away (from Van Halen II, 1979)
08. Atomic Punk (from Van Halen, 1978)
09. Everybody Wants Some (from Women and Children First, 1980) w/ a bit of Eric Clapton "Crossroads" Jam
10. So This Is Love? (from Fair Warning, 1981)
11. Mean Street (from Fair Warning, 1981)
12. Pretty Woman (from Diver Down, 1982)
13. Alex Van Halen Drum Solo
14. Unchained (from Fair Warning, 1981)
15. I'll Wait (from 1984, 1984)
16. And the Cradle Will Rock (from Women and Children First, 1980)
17. Hot for Teacher (from 1984, 1984)
18. Little Dreamer (from Van Halen, 1978)
19. Little Guitars (from Diver Down, 1982)
20. Jamie's Cryin' (from Van Halen, 1978)
21. Ice Cream Man (from Van Halen, 1978) w/ acoustic Diamond Dave Intro
22. Panama (from 1984, 1984)
23. Eddie Van Halen Guitar Solo (incl. "Women in Love" intro, "Cathedral", "Eruption")
24. Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love (from Van Halen, 1978) w/ a bit of Deep Purple "Smoke on the Water" Jam
25. 1984 (from 1984, 1984)
26. Jump (from 1984, 1984)