I am now recovering from a marathon weekend. I had to play 2 hours away from me in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania on Friday night, got home around 4:00 am only to have to play for a special event at 8:00 am. Then I had another gig after that, and Sunday morning I had to play for my church services at 7:45 am. Needless to say, I am “so” glad to be on this side of the equation right now. I was severely exhausted this past weekend. While the gigs were good ones, the one I treasured most was the one on Saturday morning that had thousands in attendance. It was done outside by the river here in Philadelphia and it was for a very special occasion. The event was entitled “Recovery Idol” and yes, it was named after the former talent search program “American Idol.” This operated under the same concept except that this event was targeted for “recovering drug addicts.” This program may not have been any near the level of the talent that would normally be featured on American Idol, but that didn’t matter. What this accomplished most was it gave recovering addicts an outlet to celebrate their victories over their demons. If you have ever known a seriously addicted drug addict, you already know about the struggles they go through. Each addiction is different, but some will steal, commit crimes or even kill just to satisfy their cravings. Even though I have never personally taken drugs I had friends who were in dire need of help. One of them just recently passed away, and that was my good friend “Billy Paul.” He sang the hit song “Me and Mrs. Jones” and “Your song.” I played for him (and toured with him) for years and he often talked about his conquest over being addicted. He also talked about how he used to do drugs with his friends Sly Stone, comedian Richard Pryor and Marvin Gaye. The good news was that Billy managed to “win over” his demons and remained drug free until the day he died. Some of my other friends are still struggling with it, but at least most of them are still here. Recovery Idol many not have the same fame that programs like “The Voice and American Idol” have, but for the thousands of people who overcame their struggles this was bigger than life. There are “many” people around the world who are addicted to drugs and in need of an outlet. I perform for this event each year and it is my honor to do so. For the Philadelphia faction, Rick Ford put this program together, and my good friend Doug Lyons was the musical director for it. I was just glad to be there and wanted to share my experience with you today. If you get the chance I invite you to read up on it by yourself. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.