The other day I was talking to my friend on the phone. When he started talking he wasn’t making much sense. His words were blurring a lot and he couldn’t get his thoughts together to formulate sentences. It was clear to me the he was incoherent. At first I told him that he needed to get to a hospital “now.” He responded to me by saying that he didn’t have enough of something so he couldn’t go. I remember how it was for me a year and a half ago so I had some experience with this. I called 911 and asked them to go check on him. It was a good thing I did so because my friend was “having a stroke.” After a while I found out that he had been taken to the hospital and he is still there today. I went to visit him the other day and while he acted as though he knew me he couldn’t remember my name. He also couldn’t remember his own name. He showed me his phone and his bank accounts.I believe he wanted me to take care of his bills, but that information can only be done by someone else on his account or by him. He tried calling the institution but was clearly frustrated by his lack of ability to communicate with them. He was getting more frustrated. He remembered curse words very well and used them frequently but he could not get his thoughts together. He didn’t have anyone who could handle his account for him in case of emergency. He was a musician who also had gigs pending and some of the people he worked with still don’t know his situation. I am supposed to play a gig with him this weekend. I had no idea where the gig was supposed to take place but luckily I managed to discover the guy in charge. He gave me the details I needed. In case you are ever in this situation, please make sure that someone can handle your business for you. A stroke can leave you disabled and once that happens you may not remember your own passwords to your accounts. As long as someone else (that you trust) can handle your accounts for you then they shouldn’t be in jeopardy. This really happened and can easily happen to you. Be prepared for emergencies. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
Stevie Wonder and Brett Jolly
When it comes to interviews I “absolutely love them.” I have no problems expressing myself and having fun doing so. I was called to do this program and talk about some of the things going on in my life. I hope you don’t mind but I decided share this with you today. The program is called the Doris Hall James show and of course this episode features Brett Jolly. Thank you so much for checking out my Daily Thought and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
Nadirah is an accomplished singer, and she decided to come join us this past Wednesday night. She wanted to do a Sade song (and I don’t think we have ever played it before). Needless to say we had a great time playing the song for the first time. If you are ever in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania neighborhood on a Wednesday night I hope you can come join us at the Crab Tavern, 201 North Macdade Blvd in Darby, PA. We have a lot of fun and I truly believe you will too. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought and I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
I have no problems with doing interviews. In fact, I love being asked questions. I have done interviews before and they have always been fun to me. Tonight I will be doing another one. If you are on Facebook, you can check out my interview on Doris Hall-James’s Facebook page. It will be at 8:00 pm EST tonight and I believe it will be streamed live. I will talk about a lot of things and it should be fun. If you are on Facebook and would love to check out the interview, I believe the coordinates will be listed below. Thank you so much for checking out my Daily Thought and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
On the surface this might not seem like a great revelation, but my son finally got a car yesterday. Yes, a lot of people get cars at some point of their lives, but I think conditions for my son are kind of special. First, my son has had to deal with a slight degree of autism. His is probably a different type of situation, because he does not suffer fully from it. He can read very well, he knows how to operate his computer, he can speak well and his sense of direction is “excellent.” In fact, it was tough for him growing up because they put him in classes with fully autistic kids and he knew that he didn’t belong there (but he was not ready for classes with regular kids). My son is 30 years old now. He wants to live a normal life and he felt he should have a car. I agreed. This was a long ordeal and yesterday finally culminated in him getting his wish. He has had his license for a long while but no car. Getting his license was a major objective because he wanted to prove to himself and everyone else that he could do this. The first 2 times he attempted to get his license he failed and he cried over it. The woman who denied him lacked compassion and practically tried to make my son look like a villain. I will never forget her. On the third try we had to go to someplace 2 hours away in Lewistown, Pennsylvania. To help my son out I had him drive all the way there. This relaxed him significantly and when he finally passed I was “crazy happy.” Yesterday was the ultimate because he now has a car of his own. Many people will probably not understand why I feel the way I do, but if you knew what we have been through you would get it. I never treated my son as though he was special. I always considered him to be just like the rest of us. So far, I think it has worked. This is still only the beginning for him. I will ride with him in the passenger seat until he fully gets the hang of everything. I won’t let him go on his own until he is ready, but now that he has a car of his own we can do this. Congratulations to my son. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
Dee Dee Sharp in concert with Brett Jolly on bass guitar
Kate Smith was an icon in Philadelphia for a while. She was a singer best known for her rendition of “God bless America” which she sang on many occasions for the Philadelphia Flyers hockey team. It has been said that she was a good luck charm for the team whenever she sang the song. Recently history “reversed course.” The Flyers (and New York) banned her music because of racially disparaging songs she sang somewhere in the 1930’s. One song that was well noted was a tune called “That’s why darkies were born.” To me, racism is evil and in no way do I advocate it. However, I am also a person who judges people not by their past, but rather their present and “perceived” future. The Flyers went as far as to remove Smith’s stature from the hockey arena. For those who would like more information, here is the article:
Kate Smith died in 1986. Yes, she sang racially divisive tunes back in the day, but she never wrote those tunes and I know that most times singers have to do whatever their management “tells” them. If her management didn’t agree then I’m sure she would have never sung the song. Also, that song was done during a time when racism was heavy in our culture. If we are going to censure her now, then what will we do about Elvis or John Wayne? Francis Scott Key wrote a third verse of the Star Spangled Banner that promoted racism. Should we still pay tribute to the song? Presidents Washington and Jefferson both had slaves. It appears that our history is slowly but surely becoming “tainted.” We are now finding out things that seem to reverse popular opinion. Even Michael Jackson was not exempt. If our history is now being damaged by new discoveries, how should we react? I don’t necessarily want to wipe these people clean from our memory plate. However, I do believe that it is about time to create a “new history of events.” Everything must change (in one way or another). We an continue to cling to our past, or we can “re-invent it. I didn’t know Kate Smith. Just because she sang a racist song back in the 1930’s doesn’t necessarily mean that she had racist views when she got older. Yes, the song was evil, and the “song” should be banned everywhere. Considering how “diverse” our DNA is I doubt that there are many (if “any”) people who are truly one hundred percent of any one race anyway. To me, that means that we all are now so different that essentially we all are “the same.” If you have at least one percent of another race in your family ancestry then you are “not” purely one race. That means you are racially discriminatory towards yourself and your family. How far back can you trace “your” family line? Stop showing your family’s ignorance and accept people for who they are. Then you won’t be such an embarrassment to the one race you “claim” to represent… Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
KC and the Sunshine Band (KC holding the mic on the left side) jamming with Brett Jolly on bass guitar
Of course, I play music professionally, and I do love music. However, when it comes to the new music I am hearing stuff that is not very pleasant to my own ears. At first I just assumed that maybe this was because I am growing older and maybe my musical tastes are changing. I then asked my daughter about a lot of the music she listens to on the radio and she said that she didn’t like a lot of it either. So naturally I talked to other younger people who basically said the same thing. Then I decided to do some research on the industry to see what is happening. The answers I got were disturbing. Years ago record labels were established and they produced music to be played on the radio. These labels pretty much controlled the radio stations (so naturally if an artist didn’t have a record label deal chances were they didn’t get played on radio). Now the industry has changed. Out of all the record labels that were out back then, there are only about 3 major ones still in existence today. That means that these labels are controlling what you hear. Also, years ago the people who were in charge of these stations used to be people who knew a lot about music. Now it appears that the heads of these labels only know about marketing. When you add to this mix the fact that the internet has made it so that music can be shared online (practically for free) then this takes away the incentive for artists to create. Many artists (including myself) would still love to make music, but no one wants to lose money putting a project together. This is sad for the future of music. The radio stations I listen to are playing some of the old stuff that I loved to hear, but nothing new is enticing me right now. I worked with Paul Jackson, Jr on a gig lately. He is a great jazz guitarist who played on a lot of big name hits. He played the guitar solo on “heartbreak Hotel” by the Jacksons, and he also played for “Wanna be starting something” and “Beat it.” I asked him about the industry and he told me that a lot of the big cities have pulled Gospel and Jazz stations because they weren’t making enough money. He said that now people are streaming music which victimizes the artist even more. When an artist has his music streamed he usually makes percentages of a penny (which is not good at all). Something needs to change. For the sake of music (and those who love to hear it) I hope that can happen soon. I do have an idea but time will tell if this can work. Stay tuned… Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
Paul Jackson Jr (in front on guitar_ doing a concert with Brett Jolly on bass