This week finds me traveling to Philly last night and Richmond, VA this tuesday night with the awesome Radio Birds and incredible Death On Two Wheels! It’s been a treat to play with such talented, original bands- and they happen to be really nice guys. I urge you all to check them out, they made a fan out of me last night!
Also, hope to have some more news for ya coming soon, so stay tuned! See you all real soon.
TONIGHT!!! Im writing this as I head to New York City for round 2 of the release shows… it's at the always awesome Rockwood Music Hall Stage 1 at 9:00 and I promise you we are going to do this one right. Also, I am having this show taped so I would LOVE it if you could be a part of it! I’ll be playing the new record in full, as well as some old favs and new stuff… See you guys there!!!
Just wanted to say thank you to everyone that showed up to the Webster the other night for the first of two release parties! I had a great time, made some new friends, and let everyone that was there in on some new tunes…
This week I will be at the world famous Bitter End in New York City to be a part of a great show: we are doing a tribute to the iconic Tom Petty- covering all of his greatest hits, and raising some money for charity as well. If you are able to make it, please do so!! You can read more about it here.
Also, I will be at the awesome Rockwood Music Hall also in NYC this Sunday, October 5th for round two of the release shows. I have some things in the works to make sure this will be a special show, and I would love to share them with you so please do your best to get ‘dat ass there!
It’s nice to know that after being gone so long that I can still do this, and that you guys still want me to. You are all the coolest… thank you.
This is it. The first release party is here!! Tonight, September 27th at the Webster Theatre in Hartford, CT we tear the god damn roof off.
I hope you are ready… I can’t wait to see you all. This is OUR night, hopefully the first of many.
Doors are at 6. See you there.
Forty six?! So far in this career, I have yet to touch the charts. Every high that I have experienced as a direct result of you all being so supportive and so god damn cool has come without chart success and the first time I/we elbow our way in to the “cool kids” room we hit FORTY FRIGGIN SIX?! From the depths of this old beat up heart, THANK YOU all for downloading the record and spreading the word.. awesome. Please continue to do so, and stay tuned for some upcoming tour dates- I hope to see you all there! I mean come on… we’ve got some celebratin’ to do!
Today. Right now. At this very moment “To Live And Die In Your Arms” is available worldwide on Noble Steed Music. Just typing that seems funny to me- as I 1000% thought I would never do this again. That I couldn’t do this again. The ability to write, especially perform something so personal to me as well as the passion and dedication nessacary to record and push new material seemed to escape me for a while. It was crippling really- to do something in one way or another since you were a child of 5 years old and then to suddenly stop- or rather have it taken from you… it was a lot to bear.
Without getting to personal, the last few years of my life left me feeling more alone and hopeless than I ever had before. The funny thing about loneliness- it seems to breed more loneliness, and in turn I spent more and more time watching the world go by. Watching everyone live their lives. I started making plans to rid myself of any and all instruments and actually had visions of living under a bridge somewhere. But just when it seemed darkest, and for whatever reason, I started to write again. At first, just some random melodies and then full songs. It felt like talking to an old friend- someone who knows every part of you and never judges. I felt like this is what I am supposed to do with my life again... I felt like I had a life again.
The early material wasn’t all amazing (I wish I could say it was, but I think you have to write some “stinkers” to get to the good ones… the trick is learning the difference between the two), but it was enough to get me excited about the possibility of something better. Better songs, a better me, a better life. Slowly and delicately I amassed a collection of songs that I was genuinely proud of- something that if you know me, you know is not something I can easily say. Someone said “with pain, comes great art”, and I couldn’t agree more.
I remember meeting with Dave Pittenger, who would after a long while end up producing this thing, and showing him very early versions of a lot of these songs. The ideas that we shared and instrumentation that we could both hear on the tunes seemed new and fresh and most of all exciting. Leaving that meeting I knew that Dave was “the guy”, I just couldn’t afford it. You may or may not be surprised to know how terrible a divorce is for your bank account, and since I am not an artist with financial sponsors or a wealthy family, I had to figure out a way to raise the capitol. Enter Kickstarter.
Now, if you have ever believed anything that I have ever said, let it be this: I SWEAR ON ANYTHING HOLY I THOUGHT WE WOULDN’T MAKE THE GOAL. While setting up the campaign, picking rewards, making the video, etc I totally thought that all of this was not going to work. I didn’t think that anyone other than select members of my family would care. Honestly, I know that sounds a tad depressing but I consider myself something of a realist. It never occured to me that so many of you, that I have been so damn fortunate to meet and play for, cared as much as you did/do and that you would all be so generous. Everytime I got an update that someone else had donated, I smiled so hard and eventually had the thought to myself that “we could do this”.
I say “we” as after all of this, I felt like I was a part of something. That we all were a part of something. That maybe- scratch that, that there were DEFINITELY people out there that felt like I did. Like we could all relate. It was the most exhilatering and amazing feeling that I had known thus far- that “holy shit, it’s working” feeling. The Kickstarter campaign actually exceeded the original goal! Shocked, elated, vindicated, hopeful.
What a lot of people don’t know is that the Kickstarter campaign raised just under half of the nessacary recording budget, but it was enough to go ahead and get started. Late October found me in Nashville working close with Dave on the select tunes we thought would make for a great record and hopefully speak for me better than I could. Those few weeks would prove to be life changing and we created what I know to be the best record I have EVER been a part of. I saw what a talent Dave is and how skilled a producer he was. I heard what my songs could be. I fell in love- HARD- with recording again. Even with my typical attitude (not the most optimistic guy sometimes) Dave was nothing but positive, and encouraging, and everything a friend/producer should be. I owe him a lot for those weeks- they mean more to me than he could know.
Dave and I played every instrument that we could get our grubby little mitts on, but every good record needs a kick ass drummer on it. I turned to maybe the nicest guy I know, and an even better drummer: Joe Barrick from the incredible Sam Grow Band. I met the SGB while on tour with Ingram Hill in the fall of 2012 and within hours of the first show we were all fast friends. I felt like I had known them for years, and we have stayed close ever since. When I knew that I was going to do this thing- I reached out to Joe who simply replied, “HELL YEAH!”. We figured out what day would work and when it came time to record drums- Joe showed up with his amazing attitude and KILLED IT. Six songs in fewer hours, some of which he had never heard before. He played them with ease- like he had been banging these things out for years. I knew the drums would be great when he agreed to do them- but holy shit are they something else. They elevate these songs to a whole other level, he is just that damn good.
After recording, the months that followed found me listening to mixes and making adjustments with Dave. The songs seemed to all have their own unique sound and vibe, but somehow sounded like they all were a part of the same thing- they belonged together. I actually started to perform again. Where I used to feel so alive started to make me feel that way again, and you guys really seemed to respond well to the new material. I would get a lot of “what was that new song?” after shows- I would in turn smile and say “just wait”, as I was in on the secret: this record was going to kick some fucking ass- brace yourself.
The mixing was finished. Off it went to Cass Anawaty for mastering and came back somehow sounded sweeter than it did before. I have had “industry professionals” tell me that my previous records weren’t “radio ready” and couldn’t figure out what exactly that meant. I get it now. Sonically, this thing delivers in every way the others hadn’t and couldn't. It’s clear without being “slick” or “polished”. You can hear every instrument ring through. It’s pretty when it has to be, dirty where it needs to be (as any good rock n’ roll record should). It’s everything I dreamt that it could be.
The worst part of finishing the record was the thought, “well what the hell do I do with it now?”. You can make the best record ever but without the right team behind it, people might never hear it. Thats where Jason Spiewak comes in. Jason and I had a good relationship working together for the past few years and he had been cheerleader when I needed him to be during this whole “dark” time. There was actually a show he invited me to play in New York a while ago that stands out to me. It happened to fall in the middle of one of the worst weeks of my life and it must have shown. Without me saying a word to him, he came up behind me, nudged me in the shoulder to let me know he was there, and said, “…Well you can’t quit. You’re too good to quit.”. He went on to say some really nice things that he didn’t have to and gave me a bit of a kick in the proverbial ass that I needed. He doesn’t know it- but that talk meant the world to me.
I had sent Jason a finished copy of the record and when we finally spoke about it- he said he loved it, and thought that we could do some great things with it. The talks were really easy and before I knew it, I had a record deal. It was that simple. Instantly I knew that this record would do what it could. It was in the very capable hands of Jason and Erin Hinjos, and I was joining some great company of friends who have all released incredible material i.e., Andrea Nardello, Matt Duke, Tony Lucca, Honor By August, and many others. We began promoting it and getting ready for the big day.
Today. Right now. At this very moment. It has all lead to this. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU to everyone that helped. To Dave, Joe, Cass, Jason and Erin. To my amazing support system. To anyone reading this. This is proof that you can come back. As dark as it was, as hopeless as I felt, here I am. I’m still here, and I have you all to thank for it. I love you all more than you could know.
“To Live And Die In Your Arms”. And live again.
Hey everyone, good news! You can now beat the rush and preorder the new record as of right…….NOW!
Go get it. Please and thanks.
TWENTY. MORE. DAYS!!! Twenty more days and we let the world in on this… I CAN NOT WAIT!
In the mean time, I have been posting these every few days to give a little background to the record, Hope you enjoy!
Here we go… I am pleased to announce that I have signed, and the new EP, “To Live And Die In Your Arms” will be released August 19th on Noble Steed Music! This really has been a long time in the making and I am super stoked to be in such great company as Tony Lucca, Andrea Nardello, Honor By August, Brendan James, Matt Duke and a slew of others. Thank you all for your continued support and kind words- I literally could not do this without you. I will no doubt see you all very soon…