And life has indeed begun again... been getting some studio time in. Getting the old content engine up and running again. That's nice. Still a bit under the gun for some paperwork stuff, but I'll get through that pretty quick. Getting back on the workout routine. It's been basically Oct 2021 since I did it with any regularity. Granted for most of 2022 I had a very physical year, but it's not the same thing. And I ain't gettin' any younger. It's all about injury prevention and keeping my strength up. Got a lot of zydeco gigs coming in and even some jazz stuff. Not sure what to do about the looping thing. I need some gigs though....
Starting to dive into the synths a bit to understand some of the new toys. Still don't "get" the semi-modular synthesis. I need to know really what these things do before I can start patching them. Right now it's just twiddle and listen. It's fun, but I'd like to know.
Anyway... got some mixing to get to and some paperwork to work on.
Unintentional on the numbers. If ever there was change in my life, it's this year. No PA gigs. All the gear is gone. I've transformed my use of technology in my performances and in my studio. My time is not sold so cheaply these days. It's nice to get back into the music biz and a little more into the label biz. This is the year the label really starts. I've had it but never with enough time to get to it. I'm starting to get to it. Projects long overdue. Using my content to activate various platforms. I've been some some advertising and it works. Gonna do that a lot in 2023. Gonna make a lot of music. Gonna sharpen my studio skills, my synth chops and knowledge, and dive into my RC-600. My loop station show has radically changed. So now's a great time to throw in the new tech.
It's gonna be a crazy year.
In the two months that have gone by....
I've sold my interest in Horrific Pix and Haunted Oaks to my "partners." Good riddance to that. The season ended up flat (surprise, surprise) and I basically wasted 9 months of my life for zero return. Not to mention those relationships are heavily damaged. But I'm glad of that. It's good that I got out unscathed. Overall, I did make some money on the thing. And I know who not to deal with ever again. There are worse ways to learn life lessons.
I've also made the decision to sell my PA gear. It's about half-gone. And at this point, I'm non-functional as I no longer have enough equipment to run stuff. I can still do my solo thing and a jazz band. But that's it. Couple of powered-speakers and a small mixer will handle that for as long as I care to haul it out. Got several listings up for lights and gear, but it's going all going away. Looking forward to having it out of my office!
The rest of the events for the year were disappointing. Turn out was small, bar sales were terrible, food sales were terrible, etc... So what should have been a banner year was crushed by a faltering economy. Made enough to pay the bills. I'm grateful for that.
In looking ahead... I think it's going to be a challenging year. I'm doing some big shifts personally and professionally. We'll how it goes. Seems like change is in the air. I'm ready for it.
I do have to say that breakfast was fabulous.
Since then it's been a lot of walking, a lot of loading, a lot of twists and turns. I've lost access to my tiktok account as my phone died and I had to get another. Anyway... new account is https://www.tiktok.com/@texasnoah Posting event stuff on there...
The sad story of the day is out light trunk rolled over on I-35. Driver needed some surgery but is okay. And we have thunderstorms tonight so we're pushing back, well, everything. So tomorrow is go in late, and stay late. And so the weekend begins.
I've been greatly enjoying the work. It's good to be out working with professionals, getting stuff done, solving problems, and balancing on the tip of of pin. Connecting with vendors that I haven't seen since spring events and getting some of the old crew hands together. New faces as well. Looks like a lot of work between now and 10am Saturday, but it also looks like it should be a beautiful weekend with a beautiful event.
And the days go flying by... events, events, events. Zombiewalk is tomorrow. Been doing a lot of press releases for National Jazz Festival, and prep for Muertos Fest and SA Veterans Day. And had a nice gig yesterday at the Airport. Had a few days to just sit on the couch and recoup. That was nice. Still could use another week or so of that. But it's pretty much go time. Go home last night at 10pm. 8:30 meeting pushed to 9. But I'm going to and get breakfast anyhow...
Had a beautiful Saturday. The 2022 Texas LoopFest. Weather was perfect and some very enjoyable performances. But mostly, I got to sit in a park all day and listen to artists, artists that I handpicked, perform. Attendance was small. Stopped in at Pizzeria Vesuvio to see a fine classical guitarist perform. Going to post a clip of that on TikTok today or tomorrow.
It's been a hard year. I've been stuck in the middle of a lot of things. Mostly because that's where I put myself. I like doing things, being involved, getting my hands on stuff. I don't really care about credit and I don't really want to be running the whole shebang. I like being in the middle. I get to work with a lot of different groups and for a lot of different clients. But it ain't always rainbows and unicorns. I feeeel like there's not a lot of joy in it for me. But that was a little different Saturday/ The thing about doing community concerts is actually getting involved with the community. Felt really good to be doing it. I've missed that in my life. It's not how I want to live.
I've spent months in reflection on my life this year. I feel like I've done it all. And yeah, it's working. And it's fine, but it is no longer fulfilling to me. I'm think I'm ready for a change.
Everyday in the wee hours of the morning Bucho the Cat wakes me up. He wants breakfast. He walks on me, he licks me, he claws me. Every morning. I ignore him as long as possible, I get up to use the bathroom and feed him. A short while after I fall asleep he comes back to bed, jumps on me and snuggles on my legs. Sometimes this wakes me up again, sometimes it doesn't. A short while after that, my wife's alarms start going off. Yes alarms. Multiple alarms. After several snoozes and some fiddling around on her phone, which is on the brightest setting known to man, she gets up and starts to get ready for the day. She makes breakfast and lunch for the both of us. Maybe does some dishes maybe not, has to do her hair, etc... she also has many, many reminders and notifications beeping on her phone during all of this. I should go to bed earlier so I don't need to sleep during this time.
Anyway, when I finally roll out of bed and get my day going I proceed into my office where Bucho the Cat is on my chair. And he protests when I try to move him or share the space. Inevitably, he will leave at some point and then return. But he jumps on my desk, steps on my keyboard, wants to get on my lap, demands to be petted all while looking cute and purring.
Anyway.... time to test out some gear. Turns out the place I got it fixed wasn't so good. Something to do with meth..... yay... guess that explains why one of my KAOSS Pads got trashed.
I almost don't care about the gear. I'm at a point where I don't want to be hauling sound gear anymore and rarely rent or use my systems. I think I might sell it. I've been contemplating it for a while. But I think I'm finally ready to actually do it. We'll see how the rest of the year plays out. I think I'm done being a sound guy. I do admit I'm loathe to get rid of the gear. But I'm not using it. And it would be nice to be rid of it. It's big and heavy.
The days are flying by... events, events, events. It's nice to be back to events. I do enjoy working with vendors and crew. First little event is my passion project, The Texas LoopFest. Many thanks to SMARTsa and Andy for making it happen this year. I wasn't going to do it as it's already a packed October, but I just can't say no to Andy. Or more like, I won't say no to Andy. A true community-minded man. Everything else is lining up and looking good. Progress being made every day, a few more things getting ironed out, people signing up or backing out. It's great. I love it when things come together. The haunt is doing okay. Had some TV and ads go out this week. We'll see how the weekend pans out. In the meantime, it's time for music and fun.
Monday morning... Spent Sunday relaxing. Slept in Sunday and this morning. Body is recovering. Hands still hurt, but not so bad. It all seems like a foggy dream now. Not sure how yesterday went in sales, but Saturday was a decent start. Things shut down early though.
Started getting my shed organized a little. Taking out some scrap, throwing some trash out, put a few tools away. Just enough to make a little room and to start thinking about the next big project. Sipping some coffee and jumping into neglected emails. Made arrangements for a BBQ lunch from one of my favorite food vendors who is grilling plates today. That should be awesome. And then a TV spot at 2:30pm for the haunt.
9/24 - 2:05am. Just sat down with a bowl of noodles and a scotch. Alarm goes off at 7:30am Got a 5 hour gig with Jazz Alive for the music circle helping the kiddo-MIDI jam happen. Still need to pack my gear....
Up early, hit my list of to dos, and out the door. Got some supplies and off to the haunt. Loaded in, started rolling and Zane calls, he's up and ready for work. I grab him and we tear into it. A few hours go by and our Horrific Pix staff person shows up, and he's ready to work. So I get him going on all kinds of little projects. He starts knocking them out. Heidi shows up and starts tearing into the make-up on the bodies. The scare actors show up and start their pow-wow. Some of them pitch in and do some moving of things, cleaning, and as they do their thing, they make requests for changes to things. And the haunt develops. In the meantime, drapes are being hung, transitions are going up, lighting is getting knocked out, I'm finishing the last couple of rooms, some extra safety precautions are taken, sound is getting dropped, and we're just rolling..... I had out for a resupply mission.... I come back, Heidi is done and gone and did a killer job on the stripper corpse, the actors slowly disappear as we get their changes done, work to get their rooms right, and they make some adjustments to the path inside the maze. Zane knocks out a mural for the selfie room. Lights out and we do a walk through. Safety notes are noted, lighting issues are address. Changes... more polish, cleaning, lighting, programming.... Lights out and we do another walk through. Few more tweaks to be made. Make some tweaks, hang some drape, send Zane on one last painting mission, take a walk with the lights on, clean some stuff and realize it's time for me to go. I'm done. I've done everything I'm gonna do. Get my last pics for the final tik-tok to be posted momentarily. I tell Zane to drop his spray cans and follow me. We grab my tools and off we go. Not everything was done, but all my stuff was done. Haunt opens tomorrow, even though we had a number of folks show up today.
As I reflect on this, it's very much in the shadow of Horrific Pix. I think of this as 6 months of continuous work. Not as two distinct projects. Experiences like these are life altering. I know this because I speak from experience. Marine Boot camp was three months. That was a life changing experience. This was 6 months of serious, hard, physical, creative work in a difficult environment. I am not the same man I was before all of this and I certainly have changed my regard about my partners during this time. This is life. Tomorrow, well, tonight, the judgement will begin.
I'm very glad to have kept this blog up. It did not go the way I thought it was going to, and it'll be interested to see what I think of myself when I reread this in the future.
Pretty nuts fall jumping down my throat, kinda thinking about keeping it going.... we'll see. I haven't even check stats to see if anyone is even reading this.
Happy Halloween y'all. Please come visit Haunted Oaks, www.hauntedoaks.org.
9/22 (really 9/23 cuz it's 2:08am)
Much was done today, but the time slipped away fast. The front half is done and it's pretty nuts. Wired for sound, lighted (well, almost lighted). Got to work on the middle hard today. Clown room, done - lights, Slaughter house done - decor, lights and sound, Country store done, lights, Padded room done, lights, Projection room done - decor, sound, lights, Morgue, lights done, sound done, working on decor. Lab, working on everything, other lab, everything needs to be done, exit corridor remains unfinished. I put out a pretty serious effort. Zane was good, but it took a long time for him to snap to it. Still, a lot of help was provided. Rick finally "finished" the maze, except the exit corridor. Electrician came in and finished. We did do a power to make sure our emergency system was not tied into any of out lighting and effects. Zero problems. All GFI, all boxes hard wired into power. Did a lot of clean up, stowing unused props, throwing out trash, had one of the staff guys take a load of trash out, vacuum. We're very close to ready.
Tomorrow will be an effort. Bat some clean-up on the lights, finished off decor in three rooms, hang drape, hang plastic transitions, and hammer cable staples, do some spray painting. That's it. And no matter what, it's my last day at the haunt. Saturday we open and I have to be at Jazz Alive all day for a gig anyhow....
One work day left before we open.