Jeez, May is almost over, and I am, once again, woefully behind on everything, especially getting the newsletter written and posted for your eager eyes. It’s not that I don’t have plenty to say, because I almost always have plenty to say, if it’s a topic which interests me. But, like you, I simply don’t have time to do everything. Needy animals easily take up 50% of it. And now, in Texas, there are only 20 hours in a day, instead of 24! Another one of Ken Paxton’s nitwit moves. FYI, I usually don’t wake up until almost noon because morning sucks and is only for wimps. Who needs a fresh new day, every day? How conventional and utterly predictable can you get? In some parts of the world, morning is for drinking alcohol. Once upon a time, we were in Graz, Austria for several days, performing at a festival and hanging out with unusual people, experiencing cool stuff. Right across the street from our hotel was a fru bar, which is what they called a morning bar. I don’t drink much, so this only sounds like a guaranteed headache for lunch. None-the-less, the morning bars exist, to dull the excitement over the brand new day!
Speaking of culture wars, which I wasn’t, why are the folks with most of the guns so freaked out and angry? What is upsetting them so much? I mean, I’m not happy that the political party, of which I am generally at odds, doesn’t know how to stand up to the NRA or tax the wealthy or care about the poor, but I can honestly say I don’t want to kill anyone just because they are selfish and unfair. That’s their problem. They can live with whatever hell they’re creating for themselves, in their me-me-me misery. I’m just glad I’m not inclined to want something destroyed because I can’t relate to it or understand it. Anyway, I’ve been thinking, if Republicans can justify their attachments to assault rifles, like AR-15s (which they claim is just a gun, nothing special), surely, I can own a couple of nicely decorated boxes of cute little attractively packed hand grenades, in child-enticing fentanyl candy colors. You know, maybe a dozen or two in each box. That would be so sweet! Hand grenades are just like firecrackers. Besides my grandmother used to paint hand grenades when she worked at a weapons arsenal/army depot, right outside Texarkana. So it’s part of my family tradition and nothing is more important than family and tradition and hand grenades, right? FUN FACT. Around 50% of Republicans own a gun and 65% live in a household with guns. 20% of Democrats own a gun, with 30% living in household with guns. One can only surmise that Republicans are way more afraid of the world than Democrats. I would think that the “religious flock,” who ascribe to the power of their lord and savior, The Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ, wouldn’t feel the need for any guns at all. I guess I got that all wrong, somehow. But, hey, I’m a lover, not a fighter. Besides, as you must know, my life involves a lot of cat herding. Guns make that activity much worse. You’ll never socialize feral cats by shooting guns in the air or at people. One of my cats at home runs away if I just carry a box into the room! That’s Spot. He and his sister, Dot, often seem to be waiting for something unpleasant to happen.
Speaking of cats, I was closing up the house around 3:30 am one morning, after coming home from a gig, checking on all our pets, and opened the door to my office. Right in the middle of the floor was a little possum. Not a baby, but it was pretty young. Of course, it immediately ran behind a shelf full of all kinds of things, which meant we had to move and dismantle quite a bit to pull the shelf away from the wall. That took a while. Finally, we cleared everything out of the way, to reveal the frightened possum. Jane, my wife, put on some spiffy Kevlar gloves and picked it right up, and carried it outside. I was impressed. She kept her cool. The little possum kept its cool. I sorta kept my cool. And before we knew it, it was 5:00 am and we headed to bed, both very happy our cats didn’t catch the little guy and torture it and tear off its legs and then eat part of it.
BC News Tidbits:
The band is rehearsing pretty regularly now, creating aural excitement in the process. It’s a fun scene and right across the street from our parking lot in the back is a recently opened Middle-Eastern Disco Bar
I’ve been writing lots of new songs and some are almost decent. I like to give myself a block of time, with an instrument and a groove/beat and a vague feeling, either musically (melody and chords) or lyrically. Sometimes a song starts with a concept, or an idea and the challenge is to make the music or lyrics support the idea without sounding forced, awkward or overly preachy. Sorta preachy is acceptable. One person telling another person what to do is classic stuff. It’s often expected posturing and the singer, in lots of songs, must be assertive to properly express his/her point-of-view, but every aspect of this sits on a razor’s edge, down to which word you choose to rhyme with another word. Some composers feel trapped by the process of writing. It’s where you face your own ego and try to maintain objective distance and not ignore the obvious signs that you’ve actually come up with something quite awful. Have a drink.
Dave Monsch is still playing woodwinds with us, brilliantly, in Jeffrey’s absence. In the meantime, Jeffrey is still recovering, a tiny amount every day and getting pretty good at one-hand harmonica. Everyone continues to be pleased with his progress. In fact, he graced the stage with the rest of us recently at the National Polka Festival in Ennis, Texas. And then, accordion monster, Alex Meixner showed up and we all played the Kenny Bass and The Polka Poppers classic, “The Westview Polka,” which Alex also recorded when he was around 13 or 14 years old and that’s the version Brave Combo eventually heard and also decided to record. Anyway, this was a big ol’ kick-ass sound at the polkafest. Eight-Headed Combo: Danny, Robert, Bubba, Jeffrey. Alan, Dave, Alex and me! You shoulda been there!
Bubba will be heading up to Eureka Springs and Kansas City with us in June. He can play bass, dance and sing, all at the same time! Check our itinerary for performance details.
We have a new BC-Generic T-shirt. Basic for the basics. No surprises. Perfect for mindless summer. Expresses the minimum. Beautifully unpretentious and won’t clog your brain, yet you can let everyone know, in a wonderfully subtle way, you get it.