In the mind of Nate

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Set the bar for yourself

This will obviously be the last post of the year. I was brooding over what I should write about, I really don't want bore everyone with some lame ass "Year in review" piece. I was just very indifferent about the Holidays this year with the requirement of having to rush around like a maniac to buy stuff, which keeps getting crazier and crazier with each passing year. So much so that I even dreaded going to Holiday parties, partly because of my need to not conform to what is being spoon fed to us, but mainly because of my own self disappointment in where I think I should be at this stage of my life. However, the much dreaded Holiday events made lead me to meeting a remarkable person from another era. This person had been telling me about how the music scene once was here in New York, and in other places. The importance of such places like the Joshua Tree(the place in Southern California,not the U2 album) and how he feels that music will be society's saving grace. That was something I really needed to hear,especially after seeing the decline of the scene, so much so that I purposely misspell it when I refer to it as a Seen, it should be about the music. But instead, many times it has turned into a need to be seen, with all this facebook, and instagram hoopla some people views themselves as the focal point in certain situations, making the event itself secondary and therefore the event has lost all meaning and purpose.I have heard fabled stories of NYC years ago and more recently, Seattle where a typical local show would consist of 4 bands,sounds simple enough right?,no quite.Each of these 16 musicians played in 4 other bands,which were in attendance at said show and each of onlooking band mates are also in other bands, and those band mates and their friends were also at the show, so before you know a room is filled without any major promotion,not to mention regulars and people passing by stopping in.This was a topic Me & this person had discussed in great detail. All and all, This recent experience with my new acquaintance just went to show me that once again life threw me a curveball, you never know who or what you will discover on your personal journey. These days it is very easy to be distracted and discouraged, looking around for a moment at what your peers are doing not realizing that they are showing their best side,on the surface.

My point is that is probably unhealthy to be totally content, challenge yourself constantly and never be too hard on yourself.After all, we are all evolving on a daily basis,our life is about our own personal journey and we should enjoy the process.I think the only way I can see myself continuing to keep creating is keep experiencing life and interacting with others. Of course there are many days where I can't seem to find something to write about,but those days have their purpose in my plan as well,they should be used to get the business side of all this music business done.With this blog for example, I do think that is lacking more of the music side of things. However, I can promise that their will be more of that to come in the coming weeks and months. Last year, I think I finally learned about self reliance, acceptance and free will. My need to keep this band going had really put me in some dark places and I experienced plenty of things that made me see things how they really are.Especially to "Let go" of those who just don't get it,maybe they will at some point,but that is up to them. But, I learned that my inspiration can be found in anything and I shouldn't just settle out of fear.We as musicians have been devalued due to the economy and people's lack of understanding of what we actually do to create our music,especially when pertaining to any particular artist(think of how many band bios you Haven't read). That goes back to everyone's need to Seen, our attention spans have become so short(think about,it used to be the norm to just sit down and listen to an entire album,when was the last time you actually did that?) that we no longer are interested in how a band came about, what they have done before, if you are lucky enough to get a listen that's all you get from people and we artists have come accustom to it.So, what do we do? unfortunately, most just settle and go where they are accepted at the very least hoping to be celebrated at the very best. I hope those who follow this type of practice do keep creating and challenging themselves,no matter what medium they are involved in. I think this is a good place for me to end, Thank you once again for reading or if this is your first time seeing my blog welcome aboard.I hope this New Year brings everyone many new blessings, and chances to discover yourself and the world around you. Best wishes, Nate

FYI, This picture was taken in Times Square

Sunday, December 16, 2012

My Love/Hate relationship with Sandy

Hello, I know it has been almost 2 months since my last post. Obviously this has a lot to do with Hurricane Sandy. For the most part I don't discuss my day job, simply because it has nothing to do with our music and I assumed that people have this stigma about a band whose members have to go out and work a "regular" 9-5 isn't worthy of the same respect that bands whose music is their main job get.Of course, I would be much happier to be doing the band full time.Although recently, I have been seeing it from a different angle. We are actually able to fuel our own machine, as opposed to dealing with a large corporate entity (such as a major record label) in order to stay afloat(that's why I started my own record label). Over the course of the years,I learned that many bands that are established, that make album sales,and tour actually do that. For example, some friends of mine in High School found out where the guy from Obituary worked and decided to attempt a prank phone call on him,lol. I was shocked to learn he had a day job,despite the success that his band had achieved. I was mainly including that because for some reason I'm proud to say to that someone I know prank called a famous person,which has happened more then once btw.

Anyway, The aftermath of the storm had me extremely busy, my entire routine as I know it was completely changed, having to work 16 hours days for weeks on end. One of the biggest shocks that came to me (next to seeing mile long lines for Gas), was the change in some people's attitudes. Those without power were just happy that they had a house still. It was good see that most people were looking out for their neighbors by sharing generators, and in some cases even their homes. I actually got a chance to interact with my coworkers for an extended length of time, as opposed to my regular job duties in which I am working alone for most of the day. We ended up talking about our lives and backgrounds, as well as creating our own inside jokes about things we had watched(like the The HoneyBadger don't care). Of course, I was happy that I had the opportunity to earn the much needed extra money that I did(and I do plan to donate to relief efforts). However, I was also able to take time to reflect on things, be appreciative of what I have and utilize my time and resources more wisely. And most importantly, hopefully(God willing) have a healthy mindset in general.

My Job was to report the damage that the Storm caused. This picture above was one of the first pieces of damage I reported. It was on a Main road & the Police were obviously forced to rope it off for safety concerns. We spent weeks doing this, as well as following up on calls the customers made. I got to meet people from different parts of the Country as crews were called in from Florida,North Dakota, and even as far away as California and even Canada. This did of course bring out the worst in some people as finger pointing by the politicians started, price gouging and not to mention hearing reports of people looting. I almost felt like it was nearly Apocalyptic.

It was quite surreal seeing how people's attitudes changed rather quickly by having the simple things that we have become accustom to in our daily lives taken away, as well as the shift in our daily routines. Some people simply ended up with cases of cabin fever, while some even had breakdowns from all the stress that came with seeing their homes in ruins and being forced to leave. Some of the damage I witness just had me saddened, entire homes gutted completely. Piles of wood and furniture amassed several feet off the ground along personal belongings, in some cases are irreplaceable such as family photos.

Fortunately, the line crews were getting all the power back on in the area I was assigned to. Entire blocks of residences would come out and cheer as they witnessed their power being restored. Sadly enough, not everyone's power is restored and many people are still without homes. I do encourage everyone to help out in any way they can. Monetary donations are best of course, but using your expertise to help out is also appreciated.For example, someone with Carpentry skills can volunteer time to help rebuild houses.

Lets use this as a learning experience, a Spiritual Cleansing if you will, as to not be so wrapped up in our own little worlds with our problems while we go walking around glued to our smartphones and ipads ignoring the world around us as it doesn't effect us directly(or so we think). Look how fast all that was taken away and I'm sure it will happen again.I know this is easier said than done in these hard times we live in, but I'm sure a change in people's attitudes would make for a better society for us & future generations to live in.

Thanks again for reading my posts,Be well & have a Safe & Happy Holiday Season, Nate

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And just encase some of you were wondering what's the deal with the Honeybadger,here it is: