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Good Bad Good Bad | PJ Newman

I suppose it’s the balance of good and bad, which balances our lives. I wish someone would put it in writing and give specific formulae so we can cry foul when the scales are tipped in an inappropriate fashion.
Case in point, Friday’s show at NPAC was a clusterfuck that almost put me in traction. The performer was an impersonator of female singers. She does Patsy Cline, Connie Francis and others. She should be playing Elks clubs and high security prisons, but she ended up in Bothell. The old directors of the theatre had a bad habit of booking questionable talent at exorbitant fees. They didn’t bother with petty, mundane things, such as budgets and recordkeeping. Their method of reconciliation was to throw all of the receipts in a pile and calling it good.
This explains our show. I had to arrange for transportation from the airport to hotel to theatre and back again, which I did.
Until the limo company forgot to schedule the first airport pickup Friday morning. I told the musicians to go ahead and take a cab to the hotel and we would repay her. She then told me that if the hotel wasn’t ready, well, her exact words were, “No hotel, No show!”
I almost told her to turn her fat ass around and jump on the next cattle car back to Stockton, but my Superior Customer Service Chip (SCSC) clicked on and I informed her that it was all good, but I would confirm yet again. Then she hung up on me. At this point, my neck and shoulders seized up on me and I couldn’t turn my head more than a few inches and my cell phone mysteriously flew from my hands into a wall, shattering into a bazillion pieces.
Too many cooks spoil the whatever. Too many phone calls spoil my show. Murphy’s law was strictly enforced to the point where even carefully laid plans were thrown out with the baby and the bathwater. Somehow, we managed to pull the show off to everyone’s satisfaction. We predicted an empty house, but a tour group bought 120 tickets for a retirement home for the criminally insane and we did pretty well. Even sold out of Depends!

That was bad.
Saturday was good.

Yesterday, I got to meet the man whose influence made me what I am today (insert snide comment here). Geoff Emerick, the engineer who recorded the Beatles from Revolver through the White Album and then Abbey Road, spoke at the NW Studio Summit brought to you by the Recording Academy (NARAS), the nice folks who inflict the Grammies upon us all. Geoff was accompanied by Howard Massey, a producer and engineer in his own right, who co-wrote with Geoff his experiences with the Beatles (Geoff’s, not Howard’s). It was a wonderful interview with photos, video and music from days of old. This is the guy who invented techniques that we take for granted these days, whose experiments are now stomp boxes and effects racks and plug-ins that we use daily (except for those of us who don’t record with computers and actually have to figure this shit out for ourselves). I had Geoff autograph my copy and got to speak with him for a moment. Garey went with me and we hooked up with Tom Hall (another great engineer) and had a great time.
After sitting through a pointless seminar on studio monitors (which was nothing more than an hour long infomercial for JBL speakers), my neck told me to take it home.

A particularly muddy hour at the dog park ensued, followed by pizza and beer (for me, not Mifune). Caught up on sleep and woke up to incredible neck pain. Going to see an orthopedic surgeon tomorrow and schedule an MRI.

Got the plans back for the studio. Jon Stone did a great job drawing the rooms out. Hope to get the first load of lumber this week and start building. One more week at Triamp and then I fly without a net for a while.

OK, back to the dog park and painkillers.