Translate

In the mind of Nate

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Dive Bombs from Heaven : a Tribute to Eddie Van Halen

Hi everyone, as all of you know about two and a half weeks ago the Rock World lost a true legend and most likely the greatest, most influential guitar player to ever live: Eddie Van Halen

As late as this tribute may seem, and impersonal. Due to the fact that I never had the pleasure of even meeting the man, I'm sure many who enjoyed his music and quite possibly inspired to play guitar because of him can relate to how is truly personal this actually is for me and many others.

So where do I begin? At the beginning of course (well for me anyway). Despite the fact that my age wasn't even in the double digits when I discovered Van Halen, I became a fan a little bit later in the game than many. My cousins and their friends had turned me on to Van Halen. I remember taking trips with them to the local mall,clamoring on while in route piled into my Aunt's van while we expressed how awesome we thought that band is. "In his book,they are the best!" my cousin Joey's friend Bobby had said pointing to my cousin while immediately making a fist in order to unknowingly emphasize his excitement. Obviously on one of these trips I bought one of their albums, which I believe quite possibly the first did I ever had gotten on vinyl. And I still have it btw :


Of course around this time, MTV was pretty much a new thing and of course Van Halen was a major part of it. I don't think any of their albums before the groundbreaking "1984" had any major music videos, but I know this album had produced at least three that are considered classics today. This being the first that comes to mind :



I don't really need to tell anybody what a music video does to enhance a band's popularity, but I will anyway LOL. With the added visual experience and Television's ability to reach more people than ever before, it made all of the band's popularity skyrocket. Especially videos for bands such as Van Halen, not only had musical prowess but eye candy for pretty much everybody watching.



I really wish that I had got to see Van Halen perform live, an experience much more powerful than. seeing them in the 2 dimensional. An experience so powerful and monumental the writers of the cartoon South Park decided to make Van Halen responsible for ending the struggle for control of Jerusalem that is been going on for thousands of years once and for all by people of all faiths coming together at their concert and making peace after discovering their mutual love for Van Halen. Of course this didn't really happen, but just the fact that a few writers of a very popular show thought of this really says something about how much of an impact Van Halen has made on the world.

One the best Van Halen concert stories I heard was from a friend who saw Van Halen perform along side of Quiet Riot on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles,CA. This was before either band had become National Acts so, the audience that night witnessed two guitar legends perform as Randy Rhoads(more recognized for performing with Ozzy Osbourne) was also a founding member of Quiet Riot. What a show that must have been!

I'm sure there are thousands of stories like these from people all over the world who were touched by the music Eddie Van Halen was partly responsible for bringing to the world. Like I said in my last post about Rush, the Van Halen logo was also written on walls and notebooks, etched onto desks over the place that I'm sure could still be found today. In my opinion this is probably the most popular rock based graffiti ever. All this is just some of the evidence of how much the music we grew up on defines us. For many,it shaped who we are and how we interacted with others. This is why so many people that have never even met Eddie Van Halen or any famous musician feel this as a personal loss as if they lost a family member or close friend. Because it is a personal loss. like many who study different forms of spirituality,some often view their relationship with God or whatever deity they choose to worship or interact with as a personal one. Think about how you feel when one of your favorite songs comes on, that rush of emotion, the excitement. For most it doesn't even matter if it's a song that you been listening to for years,it may even trigger you to remember when you first heard it and what was going on in your life. Or you may even associate your favorite songs with some great memories.

Certainly not everybody can understand the level of intense feelings that some of us have towards music and the loss of our idols, but that's fine. I myself was not only in tears when I first learn of Eddie's passing, but I was really taken aback,shocked and very saddened for many days after. Grieving is a personal thing, and even though there are healthy and unhealthy ways of coping with it it's very rare that anyone grieves exactly the way somebody else does. Even though stages of grief have been determined,it's a process that I don't think can fully be explained by science. And just like good feelings be triggered,so can feelings of grief and sadness. So it's not right to judge anyone for grieving for another even if this somebody that died is someone that by social definition, they did not know.

I've already stated in part how influential Eddie Van Halen and his music are on my life. Listening to them so early in life, being inspired to play guitar by him and witnessing some of their music being used as a soundtrack to the highlight films for my high school football team. Specifically "Dreams" & "Standing on top of the World". Very appropriate for a bunch of young athletic guys determined to win a championship. And of course as a guitar player, he inspired me to try to reach the highest heights is possible (If only the people around me felt this way). learning how to play guitar masterpieces, such as "Eruption" was such an exhilarating feeling. I do feel as if I was on another plane, like Heaven(you maybe thinking : there's that word again). For many months now,the very end of that song has been my phone's ringtone. And when it came to deciding on a guitar amp, as usual I picked a Peavey. And not just any Peavey, the original 5150 guitar head design by Eddie Van Halen that I still owe on to this day.


So I think that myself and music fans around the world,owe Eddie Van Halen & his bandmates,David Lee Roth,Michael Anthony,Sammy Hagar,and his Brother Alex Van Halen and his Son, Wolfgang Van Halen a huge thank you. I don't think that I would have even formed a band if it wasn't for Van Halen.Condolences to his Family and all who had the pleasure of knowing him(in any way,shape or form).

I chose the name of this entry as a way to not only comfort others who I felt his loss,but as a way to express how I feel about what happens when somebody passes on to how I feel about what happens when somebody passes on to the other realm. Their spirit,their power,and gifts become greater and can be felt by those who were inspired by them. So in essence,I do believe they become a force of nature. Most people pass on hoping those in mourning will not be sad for long. And as impossible as it seems,I was hoping to steer attention off of the fact that he had just died and on to what he gave to all of us. After all,if we are able to look past all of the pain of losing another, we can realize that in the end all that really matters is love.

Thank you all for reading this,and I hope this brings you comfort anytime you are grieving. Please enjoy this short audio piece of Eddie playing (you'll know what song it's from) that I had put together with some artwork I found and words that I had expressed to honor the one and only Eddie Van Halen

Stay well everybody, Natexoxo

Saturday, September 12, 2020

Farewell to a King , a Birthday tribute to Neil Peart




Hello everyone, after everything that's been happening in the world these past few months I figured it would be good to pick right back up on a piece I was planning on doing months ago. About a Man that most of us are familiar with in some way,shape, or form. Or at the very least, have heard of the band that he took to new heights, Rush

Yes, Im talking none of them the one and only Neil Peart who would have been celebrating his 68th birthday today, if he didn't pass away earlier this year. The name Neil Peart is now synonymous with the term "best drummer in the world" even though his lyrical contributions to his band were also a key element to their success. It's ironic to think that when they started out, Neil wasn't even part of Rush. But after a mutual friend of Neil's encouraged him to audition for Vocalist/Bassist Geddy Lee and Guitarist Alex Lifeson He joined the group for their second album "Fly by Night" along with their first tour of the U.S. and the rest as they say is history. On the flip side, it's a bit scary thing of what may have become of Rush if Neil never joined. I have no doubt in my mind that if that had been the case, Neil still would have went on to be the backbone and lyricist for another successful group, if not several. It's quite impressive that at the age of 18, Peart traveled from his native Canada all the way over to England in pursuit of his dream. Only ironically enough only to have found it back where he started.


Many people, including myself were fortune enough to witness Rush perform live. Even though me and my friends got turned on to them many years after their debut, we'd found evidence of their early success by flipping through old high school yearbooks and seeing the kids rocking Rush shirts or finding some form of graffiti that was written on desks in school or on the bathroom walls (unfortunately not from the Prophets though) mostly comprised of their logo and the pentacle which was part of the artwork for their iconic concept album,"2112". However, nothing beats seeing them actually perform live. It's a great feeling being amongst all of their fellow fans, looking out in any direction and seeing several people playing air drums perfectly in sync with Neil. And I'm sure most of them, like myself are not truly drummers and the decent amount of them have probably never even picked up a drumstick(the wooden kind I mean). But all in all that was the magic of a live Rush concert, they just empowered you in such a way that you felt you could emulate Neil's prowess. I'll leave this here so you can see for yourself, I'm sure this will bring back great memories for a lot of people.



It goes without saying that Neil Peart has influenced several musicians throughout the decades, and will continue to do so for as long as people are able to hear his music. A few of them allowed me to share their words about Neil after he had just passed away. Starting with my own drummer, Ken Holley :

"It’s difficult to say just a few words about Neil Peart. He was a force to be reckoned with both as a drummer and lyricist...As a drummer, he was arguably THE best rock drummer to have walked the planet. That said, he was a humble man who didn’t believe that being a musician was a competition. He was completely self taught and played multiple genres of music with the same amazing precision he played the progressive rock music he wrote...Neil was often referred to as “The Professor”...not just because of how cleanly he played but for his humility and willingness to teach other drummers (basic technique to beginners, more advanced rudiments and licks for the more advanced). His influence amongst drummers is only limited by those who have not heard him play...Rest In Peace, Professor! You were a tremendous musical influence in my life as well as many others! May you always be remembered well! You will be missed by all."


“Not only was Neil Peart one of my biggest drumming influences, but, life influences as well. I was such a fan, that I actually wrote Mr. Peart about what to do after I graduated high school: keep playing in bands, go to a music school like Berkeley or go to a regular university. 6 months later, he actually wrote back! “From the desk of Neil Peart... “ I was in shock. He said playing in bands can lead to a frustrating dead end, going to a music school like Berkeley would be great but going to a liberal arts college would give you the benefit of a well rounded education”. So, that’s what I did! I went to the University of Minnesota. Haha!"-John Servo of Panzie,BILE,16 Volt,and Hellbent(formely of)Chemlab, KMFDM, Daniel Ash, Sister Machine Gun, Maniac Rise, Wrath of Killenstein

When I asked him for his quote, Servo had informed me that at that very moment he was listening to Rush's "Caress of Steel" album and rocking his "Hemispheres" tour shirt. Yet Another example of the magic that is Rush

Of course like any great artists, Rush had a way with writing songs that people could relate to. Growing up in the suburbs, this is one of my favorite songs by them which I'm listening to as I'm writing this(and yes, im involuntarily playing air drums along with it)



"Neill wasn't the reason I started playing drums, but he certainly is the reason I started my journey into more complex drumming. After hearing Moving Pictures I thought drumming was either hard rock or swing. Rush opened my eyes, ears and mind to serch out more progressive music. If it weren't for Neil Peart, I wouldn't have considered Yes, Jethro Tull, King Crimson or Mahavishnu Orchestra. This was the leap I took after hearing Neil play for the first time and I thank him for it. Later, the biggest influence he would have on me is his lyrics and his ability to write either a good story or express some deep emotions. THAT was a huge influence."- Runt Wahh of Vague Perception/By Blood Alone



"Can't say anything as a drummer, but as a lyricist, I certainly can. Just what a songwriter! His fantasy stuff, his Ayn Rand influenced stuff, the philosophical, political, humanitarian "stuff" was just great. "Subdivisions" is literately, a lyrical masterpiece. "The Trees"? WOW! I could go on and on (and on) with great songs/lines that he has written. And as a music fanatic: Yeah, what a drummer. I know for a fact, the drummer in my band, IS a drummer, *because* Neil. Enough said..." Amber Lynn of Vague Perception


Ah! "the Trees", another favorite. I actually learned this piece and played so repetitively, that I gave a decent amount of my friends headaches lol



"Hi Imbolg, This is an important breakthrough of healing for Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush, to, publicly knowledge the tributes and outpouring the Rush Family has expressed in love and respect of Neil Peart. Please, let's show Geddy and Alex as much love as possible on their healing journey". Thank you for your kind support, Paul,Zest Radio

Thank you all for reading this. Whether you're a longtime fan of Rush or not, this will give you a a sense of how greatly this band has effected the lives of many. In closing, i'm going to have to plagiarize myself, and share what I originally posted after I found out that Neil had died. Since the message is still true.

Be Well all,

Nate xoxo

"The message in this song Echoes much stronger after losing Neil. It's easier said than done, but I hope that all of us will be able to absorb the message in this song and cherish the moments that we have with our friends and loved ones and not squander them or take them for granted. To Neil Peart, where can we begin to talk about the impact you've had on music and generations of musicians. The story of how your determination as a very young artist had you to traveling to England in an attempt to become a professional musician. Obviously you did that and much more. Strangely enough today as I was writing some lyrics, I decided to listen to two Rush songs not knowing about this. This is the last song I heard today so far. Thank you for all the great performances and memories. Myself and many other musicians are eternally indebted to you."






Please be sure to watch the the Modern Drummer Festival with a Tribute to Neil Pratt which airs live Tonight at 8pm EST

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Tell me what you want

Please See this link and find out how you can help save lives



Hello all, please don't let Uncle Sam make assume what this is about. Because this is NOT by any means a political post. Many of you know that I never post about that topic,but still just needed to inform you. After my last entry I decided to pause for a little while in hopes that what I was saying would seep into the hearts and minds of those willing to listen. Not to mention, even though we've been inundated with plenty of updates and theories since then, what I spoke about previously is still a current topic.

This is easier said than done of course, but instead of allowing what's going on in the world and everyone's opposing views to suppress me, I chose to take a chance at gaining some new momentum. Even though we are all in this together, which has even become sort of a slogan it's quite obvious that people deal with this very differently based on their own personal experiences. I for one, have grown accustomed to extremely long periods of delays in progress and stagnation. Mainly due to my past experiences trying to get my albums recorded and being forced to deal with individuals that didn't share my passion and were not nearly as motivated or took any pride in the finished product as I have,even though my last album charted. I won't dwell on that, except to point out that I did learn my lesson and I left those who try to hold me down in the past as their attitudes that have rightfully served them (karma wise) since they accomplished very little in the music industry. I do admit that I had the blinders on when I saw that people were simply just going along with everything the news media have been telling them to do. This is of course because I have seen time and time again how we were slowly lead to where we are right now.

After choosing the title of my last post, the song the title was taken from reminded me of where I had heard for the first time on the show the Wonder Years . If you haven't seen this show yet or need something to watch right now(please don't make me say the Q word)I highly recommend it. I found myself rewatching it again, as it was always a favorite especially since I was the same age as the main character when the show first aired(and like Kevin and Winnie I had my first kiss at that age too). And surprisingly enough, at the start of one episode they even mention my hometown Ridgefield Park,NJ.So I naturally identified with most of the subject matter(even though it was set 20 years earlier). Looking past all the reminiscing and the tear jerking finale (whether you admit to it or not),which aired exactly 27 year ago yesterday. A fact reminded to us by Danica McKellar (who played Winnie Cooper on the show) when She posted on TikTok. I found out I always try and dig further into any form of media that interests me. I think learning about the inspiration for a show,a song,book,etc. gives me a better understanding of how it was created. Even though I admittedly get too engrossed in shows or movies at times this show pointed out a few key things we usually end up learning on our own and sometimes later than we needed to. One thing in particular is:

Life never turns out how we planned it
Look at what is happening right now, who would have thought last year that we would be living the way we do. Human interactions are almost non-existent and may never be the same as they once were. That is what truly scares me.

My words and videos did cause some controversy and I know that it was directly caused by our pre-conditioning to "Social Distancing" and these other mandates. Not to mention people's lack of examining an issue as a whole,which causes confusion and accusations. I know most can relate to how things once were before the internet,cell phones,social media and what not. As these things and other technology became more advanced and part of our lives,people started to grow further apart. Ironically enough as they make it easier to communicate. Or so we thought. Plenty of messages get lost in translation within a text as opposed to over the phone or in person. You miss vocal tones,cues and body language. Let's face it, in many ways to art of conversation is dead or at least on life support. Any Woman that has been on Fakebook(not a typo,see my last post) and received a message from a random guy stating his desires in a vulgar manner can attest to this. On the upside live streams and video messaging may bring communication back to where it once was, but there is still much to be rediscovered. I also recall seeing a post from a friend about how She spotted a guy She was attracted to on the train, but She went unnoticed because He was too engrossed in something on his phone. Imagine what could have been "if only".

We all have our own lessons to learn and things we will take away from this time. As I stated before,even though we are all effected we are still divided. I hope this time has that at the very least caused many inconveniences as a consumer, if not death or unemployment helps us learn some gratitude for the simple things. Things that were so easy to obtain just a few short months ago are unavailable or delayed. And of course I hope it also forces you to ask questions,not just about this situation but to yourself and to other people. As a musician who hasn't had the good fortune of a deal with a major label, a close relative that has obtained success themselves in the business or being born into a wealthy family I have had to rely on honing my craft,educating myself and building good relations with anyone I meet. Telling people what they want only works if you have millions to advertise on every tv network,radio station,billboard,magazine and perform in as many places as possible.Let's face it,we have all been sucked into mass advertising ploys in some way,shape or form.

I recall attending a show and introducing myself to another singer I knew of,only to get a quick hello and a button handed to me before being dismissed. Obviously,that button was never pinned on my jacket and got lost. Simply because in this guy's mind that was all I existed for. Just another face in the crowd to support his art,which would obviously not be reciprocated. In turn, I recall speaking to other artists who both appreciated my questions and admitted they were craving a conversation about what moves them and the chance to explain their motives and inspirations. This reminds me of the night I met Tina Root of Switchblade Symphony many moons ago at the Wetlands in NYC. And the same night I met Peter Steele of Type O Negative. Unable to locate a marker to ironically enough have him autograph the shirt I was wearing which I bought the last time I saw him perform live(if memory serves me correctly and anyone who knows me knows that mine usually does) I got a simple "Good luck" as I told him that I perform in a band too and watching him raise his head back up to standing straight from crouching down to speak to me, a guy who barely came up just past his elbow and wished him a good night as to not be a nuisance. Just figured I'd take the opportunity to finally share that with all of you.

So as to not overstate the point I was trying to make, I urge all of you to "Tell me what you want" in the comments section below. You are welcome to comment below or if you feel it's too personal or something you can't answer right now, tell me later or Just go after it! Knowing what you want is empowering and will protect you from just going along with what regiments are thrown at us (sometimes) under the guise of safety and your well being.Now I already told you what I want(even though Uncle Sam told you for Me) so I am really looking forward to hearing what you have to say and what I can learn from all of you.

I will leave you with the song that helped me create this entry by the band Zebra whose lead singer, Randy Jackson I also had the pleasure of meeting at a local charity event for the USO

I hope you are doing well.Until next time, stay safe everyone.

Nate,xoxo

And here's a quick intro to the Wonder Years

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

There's something happening here : the curve is dividing us

Please See this link and find out how you can help save lives

Hello everybody, when news of this pandemic hit I told myself I was not going to write about it. But like it or not, there is really no way of going about your day(whether you're staying at home or going to work, sorry but the word "Quarantined" is not truly by definition what the public is being told to do, look it up) without being inundated by the latest update on this crisis. The news media is supposed to keep us informed but it seems like it entire news segments are dedicated to this directly and indirectly. Not to mention daily press conferences by the public officials. This has obviously contributed to the Widespread Panic which it's already in place due to the fact that the Coronavirus is deadly. However the facts still prove that more people have died of other illnesses that have not received as much publicity. Not to mention the possibility that many of the recent deaths were reported as falsely of being caused by the virus.

One of the things that has really baffled me, is the fact that not only has this turned into a political issue but also like politics, this has driven a wedge between many people over their conflicting opinions, which could have been formed simply by someone having a different sources of information made available to them. And we all know the old saying about opinions don't we?

I myself have noticed people that generally got along with each other are turning on one another. People that were once close friends are no longer speaking. And more superficially,I have also been the victim of many verbal attacks, based on a few posts I made on Facebook and videos I made on You Tube. Before I said anything, I realized that everyone is entitled to their opinion. And I was hoping that there was the possibility of becoming more informed on this topic. Let's face it, nobody knows everything. Even if you research this and watch the news 24/7. Something I don't recommend anyone doing, I think that the Panic the media created is another fine example of the concept that none other than Marilyn Manson had spoken about called "Fear and Consumption"(hence the mass overbuying of Toilet paper and other items). Luckily stores like Trader Joe's have regulated only 2 like items per customer. I was so surprised by the outpouring of comments from people. Mainly because on average most of my posts (which are generally about my music) don't get nearly as much of a response as this. I find that to be somewhat amusing that people that have never interacted with one of my posts prior have such a grand opinion about me, my motivations for doing this and the fact that I should not be doing it. Those who having issue with me making a statement in general, are probably used to the fact that their own rights are being taken away from them that they forgot that everyone has them. I think generally, many of these people simply glanced over the posts, saw only what pertained to them and decided to react accordingly. For those who oppose me, they either decide to unfriend, block me or do so after making remarks. Many times included childish, and unnecessary insults. Which I took with a grain of salt of course. Some of these people posted things that annoyed me and I simply "kept scrolling" as they say. Like Ben Franklin said "I may disagree with what you say,but I will defend to the death your right to say it".As I had stated earlier, many of those who had an issue with what I was saying never bothered to interact with me until that point. Save for maybe one or two people, none of them have ever giving me condolences when I had lost a loved one or congratulated me when I posted about an achievement that I was proud of. Facebook seems to have a lot to do with the perversion of the word "friend". Were these people truly my friends? Absolutely not! Maybe is it should be called "Fakebook". I had noticed that coincidentally,most of the people that decided to disassociate with me are part of a click from the city I live in. I never thought a group that prides themselves on going against the mainstream and is interested in death and other macabre themes would have lashed out at me like this. I know these people personally, and I can attest that I have treated all of them at the very least with respect and consideration. Some of whom I have looked out for as a friend and help promote their events. But in one Fell Swoop, their opinion of me has been altered over a few blinks of an eye without even being adult enough to give me the benefit of the doubt or tried speaking with my privately. Nobody even acknowledged that I gave well wishes to all those who have lost their lives, or provided links along with the videos on how to help saves lives. Overlooked of course because people only dwell on what pertains to them and the negative. Maybe the statement I made referring to people as "Sheep" was too much to handle because we are in fact comfortable with going along with what we are being told without question that pointing it out in such a manner had people up in arms. Maybe they are mad with themselves and decided to project it on to me for pointing it out.

I was trying to get people to think, and to revolt (which by ignoring My request to not comment, they allowed me to achieve this) So getting hated is of no concern (Thank you again Marilyn Manson). My point was grossly misconstrued sadly, even though I don't feel that I failed since I evoked emotion. People saw the object in each statement and not the message. Whether it was being forced to wait on ridiculously long lines (if you know history this was common under the communist regime) or being forced into wearing masks. Noticed the word "forced"? and who is doing the enforcing? These measures are being taken for safety reasons. But no more than a few weeks prior(when it's safe to say we we're more likely to have contracted COVID-19) These measures where not in place when they should have been. They are being enforced for our safety right? Like wearing gloves and washing our hands (which I do religiously) They knew about the effectiveness of these measures from the start right? Again,I'm baffled that many are complying and not questioning this (especially since our World leaders have time and time again have proven to be untrustworthy). Instead I get words put in my mouth and shunned,hence why this Meme of me was created (because many people I tried talking to civilly are still of a high school mentality and have refused to listen and believed what gossip they "heard" with no proof)



I do not wish to seek the approval or forgiveness of this group. I've been ganged up on before in actual fights and have been bullied, even though I always stand up for myself. Why wouldn't I? if they realized that they were wrong to treat me this way,ego would prevent them from giving an apology (or accepting one for that matter). I think during this time of "social distancing" many of us (myself included) should try to learn social graces like the aforementioned accepting that others have the right to their opinions,giving others the benefit of the doubt and forgiveness just to name a few. Im sure not one of them can name a single song off one of my albums,seen my band play live, or has spoken highly of me when I am not around. I am reminded of something an actual friend told me "Go where you are celebrated,not where you are tolerated".

This however did have a reverse effect, as people who genuinely like,value and love me came forth to show their support sincerely and passionately. And I do thank each and every one of them for doing so. These are people that can vouch for my character and vice versa,so they would not judge me on a whim and assume that I am being disrespectful or wish anyone harm.Because I do not.I learned early on to trust my gut,and something seemed off about the new mandate of being forced to wear a mask.I was also taught to speak out,even if I am the only voice,in hopes of inspiring others,building a sense of unity and help bring about change. This is a Country formed on rebellion,a Country who's people protested so intensely that they stopped a war! It is our right and responsibility to fight for what we believe in.Especially as Rock musicians.The entire appeal that created rock was the rebellion,sticking it to the man,freedom not surrending our rights,ability to think and question without fear. Obviously those who have turned their backs on me are not of this mindset. True the 1960's are long gone and many people didn't experience it first hand. I for one have learned plenty from this era and many topics are still prevalent today : Freedom,Equal rights for people of all Genders,Races,Social and Economic backgrounds. Not to mention valuing the opinions of others and a general sense of community. Which why I chose the first line of a particular Buffalo Springfield song as the title of this entry. Many of the lyrics pertain to what is going on right now (see below)

As we all know, we are all in this together, and life will never be the same again. I truly hope that this brings forth a positive change in society. There is not a single person who has not been effected by this either economically,psychically or mentally. I have been doing my best to check in on all of my friends. We have already shown resilience by continuing our events through live streams from home and I urge everyone to support those who are doing so and to keep doing them.


Thank you for reading this, I know it was long but when the inspiration comes I must abide. And Especially to all who inspired this (even though I know I most of them won't read this).Please Subscribe to my You Tube as I will continue to make more videos with helpful tips.

Stay safe and be Well, Love

Nate

I urge all of you to watch this :

The know infamous You Tube video I made that sparked this personal controversy :

And my follow up video (which got half the views so far)



Friday, January 24, 2020

Despite being diagnosed with Parkinson's, Ozzy Osbourne soars to the #1 spot on the Metal Charts

Yes, you heard that right. In The mists of going public about his health issues, the Prince of Darkness climbed to the #1 spot on the Metal Contraband charts this week with the first single off his forthcoming album Ordinary Man called "Under the Graveyard", which features Chad Smith, drummer of the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Duff Mckagan of Guns and Roses on Bass. The second single off Ordinary Man is entitled "Straight to Hell", also features a member of Guns and Roses, Slash on guitar. Other artists that appear on the album include,Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, Post Malone and Fellow UK music legend Elton John. Maybe Sir Elton will put in a good word in with the Queen for the Ozzman and he will be Knighted "Sir Ozzy". Has a nice ring to it doesn't it?

Judging by the sound of these first two songs, I think that Ozzy will once again deliver an album with a great mixture of his modern solo sound and the bare-bones, nitty gritty style that put him and Black Sabbath on the map many moons ago. Although I'm sure like with most of his previous releases, there will definitely be a few surprises. Ordinary Man is set to be released by Epic Records on February 21st, according to Rolling Stone.

I hope that with all these great things going on for Osbourne, they will once again overshadow his personal struggles and allow him to have many more lively and successful years to come. Ozzy grew up in poverty and started out singing with the band that would become Black Sabbath (originally named Earth) in their hometown of Birmingham England.

If you have been reading my last entries, than you probably have seen the Metal Charts from previous weeks.I must say it was truly a blessing to be on the same chart for the past few weeks as one of my main musical inspirations. Unfortunately, Imbolg did not make the charts this week and I was hoping to at least have been bumped out of our exact spot from last week by Ozzy, but it is still great to have had this insight into how the charts and radio airplay work.Special Thanks goes out to Munsey Ricci and Chelsea of Skateboard Marketing and Nelson Fernandez of Metal Contraband for making this article possible.

Please see the embedded links above for more info on upcoming charts and other Metal News, and be sure to check out the new Ozzy Osbourne songs here :



Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Can I play with Madness?

How's it going everybody? As this title may or may not imply, this is about trying to maintain consistency during the holiday madness (or Iron Maiden) that I'm sure we are all breathing a sigh of relief that it's officially over. Don't get me wrong, we all know it's good to unwind a bit spend time celebrating with our friends and family. Although, for us ambitious types it has a way of throwing us off course no matter how hard we resist. Which is partly to blame for me not making an entry in almost two months.

Since my last hiatus, I was trying diligently to stay consistent. And of course like most independent art forms, we have to be self-motivated. Knowing that there is no actual authoritative obligation (accept with my readers of course) I simply had to take a a pause til when I was comfortable to write. So here I am 😊.

I'm usually not a big fan of year in review type things. But I must say, this year despite all of the low points. There have been some very high points, for both myself the band, and other bands that I know. not only did we release our second album "the Sorrows" on vinyl, but we also did our very first music video, mini tour and National radio campaign. We shared the stage & Airwaves with many great bands.

I was also able to watch many good bands perform (including two bands that I never thought I'd see live Blitzkid & the Misfits with Glenn Danzig on vocals), and take some excellent photos of them as well. I both attended, performed and helped organize quite a few Festival events. Most of which helped raise money for charities. I also took the time to speak to some of my peers about their highlights of 2019, as well as what they are hoping to accomplish in 2020.


"The highlight of my year was getting to play with Nita Strauss and do an Alice Cooper cover. Returning to some of those markets and seeing our organic underground following. The fans are out there just got to find them. [And in 2020] Making new music and building our fan base." - Kore Rozzik


I made a guest appearence in Kore's New Video


"To be in a band, as with any career aspirations for that matter, you have to be in it for the long haul if you want to see any positive results. Nothing is overnight. We've been a band playing in the NYC/Tri-State circuits and beyond for many years. For us the journey has not always been easy, but it has been a great and eye-opening experience. We've been on a very steady climb up hill over the past few years and are in higher demand than ever. 2019 has been a really good to us in particular with more highlights than we can even share; we shared the stage with several nationally renowned acts, returned to the Gramercy Theatre in NYC (where you saw us Nate), held a residency at The Chance Theater in Poughkeepsie NY, working our way up from local bills to eventually get to work with legendary acts such as Ace Frehley & Yngwie Malmsteen, just to name a few. In September, we entered the studio to record new music, and are happy to say that there will most certainly be new Libricide material in 2020, along with other surprises along the way. Be on the lookout and join the conversation online!” - Dylan Stark of Libricide



"I would say the highlights for us are always the shows, but the milestones are probably the videos. Both take tremendous preparation and diligence but we work really well as a team. Beaming Right Up and Sick As Our Secrets singles and videos both came out this year. We did a lot of shows in 2019 and donated a lot to charities. 2020 is shaping up even bigger starting with Power of the Lightside single and video with many months of touring. We're just super grateful to still be driven and have the support of our families, fans and bands all over to keep this thing thriving. See you at the shows!!!" - John Polimeni of Makes My Blood Dance



"Symfinity has been playing more around the Northeast US this year. We debuted our very own Symfinifest featuring regional artists of different genres which we hope to repeat. Early next year we will be releasing our second full album, Anthem, which is mastered and currently in production." - -Seann Branchfieldof Symfinity


Well I hope all of you enjoyed this and have a very safe and prosperous 2020. I'll have more updated and interviews with other bands again soon. And more news about the upcoming release by Imbolg. And please enjoy this special video this entry was named after. I choose it because you can see Bruce Dickinson flying Ed Force One as inspiration to all you out there to see how much you can accomplish if you believe in yourself. Enjoy,Nate

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Stuck in the Middle with Who?

Hello, if you read my last post you'd know that I am in the middle doing our radio campaign. Debuting at #36 on the National Metal charts was very encouraging.

However, these days it seems like for every one step forward you make, things either fall back or stay still. I know most people don't know or don't want to know the day in day out struggles that most musicians have these days in order to survive. On top of having a job outside the music industry, we have to write,rehearse and promote our music. But it is rewarding being stuck in the middle if these two worlds when things pan out. But when they don't and you are left with unsold merchandise,playing to an empty room or another band's audience asking yourself is this even worth it? Ironically,one time we played in the middle of a bill with two other local acts in Astoria,NY (I'd mention them by name but the douchebag hipsters don't deserve any publicity), I watched the first band and the headliner was so frustrated about not going on 2nd (isn't a headliner supposed to close the show?) that not only did one act not play, but they decided to insult us by leaving the room and told their crowd and the other band to join them while we played like it was our fault. Besides the handful of people who learned about the show only days before we essentially played to an empty room. So I guess I was Stuck in the middle with who?

This may seem like tirade of complaining and bitterness about things I should keep to myself out of sheer embarrassment.But, if you went witnessing pass bandmates, other bands, patrons promoters and pretty much everyone involved in the music scene not doing the right thing Time After Time(and I admit myself included at times) you be pretty fed up too. Most bands have at least one or more of the "I just show up when they tell me" types. Meaning, they come in, learn the parts, and got told when to come to rehearsals and gigs. They are an asset but in this day and age, a half assed asset. I never understood how someone could trivialize spending a few minutes a day talking to friends about your shows and post on social media. To my knowledge, no one has been injured by tapping on their phone screen to hit a Share button. I have an over-dramatized my response to this down so well, that I have been told that I should do stand up comedy (but one thing at a time). I have noticed that these types are the first to complain when a show doesn't go well.

I stand by my statement from previous entries that things are not how they used to be and in a bad way. Society as a whole has changed, people had more sense of community and friendship, a band was a living breathing being with four parents who strives to for a common goal. The appeal of Rock bands was personality along with talent and every one shared a bond. The core of the success of bands from yesteryears such as Led Zeppelin or the Doors is that bond. Not only with each other but with their audience. Which is one of the reasons I started writing this blog. I wanted to give people some insight into how the life of a musician is, with hopes that someone could relate to it.

The modern music industry has many advantages with technology making production and the finished product being much easier to obtain. But, that is part of the problem. Something worth having won't come easy in most cases. Downloading a song won't cost most people a red cent and years ago we had to go to a store and spend money on music. There was no other way. Also with the ease of production their are many acts that make up an independent scene and bands with no label representation often get misguided,misinformed or are unwilling to be informed. Those who do educate themselves are left in the outside. I have realized that there are few people willing to do the things required to be successful. Yet as I stated earlier, all of this is usually keep behind a closed curtain in most cases.

So what's the solution? Most likely it's different for everybody. But for myself, I go back to why I'm doing this exactly. And that is, for the love of the music. Many times I have consider just packing it in with the band after all of the time and money that has been wasted due to all the circumstances I have previously stated. But why would I stop doing something that not only I love but defines me due to some one else is lack of love for what I do? Don't get me wrong, there are some people that actually value and respect what I have done and for the good people that I have interacted with, I am truly grateful. Like I tell people just starting out in music : this is NOT something for the thin-skinned. There's many times when people just want to shit all over your work just as a way to project their own insecurities and self-doubts I hoping to destroy yours. So it's best to surround yourself with positive people and people that can lift you up and lead by example. And of course, always be learning. This industry changes so rapidly that it's best to keep informed with the latest trends and learning resources including books and live workshops that you can attend, which I'd be more than happy to let you know about & you can also look my other Blog for Music Industry Resources.

I thank all of you for reading this once again. I know this came off is a bit of a rant or a venting session. But many people don't realize how things truly are for the independent artist that is working hard to keep what they have going afloat

And here's the song that I somewhat copied for the title of for this entry

Thanks Again, Nate