Steve Cook's soul, song, and sweat.

Shinybass Journal entry 04-12-11

Crap. Wow. Geez. Golly. Has it been 2 weeks since I have said hello? Well hello. I have been a little busy with this here touring business lately, and that’s a darn nice thing. What’s even nicer are some of the spots we have been lucky enough to see lately. Since I am two weeks behind, then I will give you 2 entries this week (so I can clear the memory off my camera), and because, well, you are owed that much.

This here business of music is a crazy one. It’s a struggle, pretty much all the time, to stay on top of things. And the ‘things’ I speak of are located on different strata, from the obvious to the not-so-obvious. The things you may see holes in are, well, this journal. As much as I would love to update from the road, some days it’s just not possible. It all depends on the venue, but recently I have found that finding a few moments’ peace is a luxury. That happens. I am not complaining, but it means a little more work when I get home. Which after being busy for 2 weeks, my yard looks like a perimeter checkpoint in the Burmese Jungle, and I came home excited to see my garden, only to find that ‘Cinnamon’ (as named by Jeff Cease’s daughter), the resident wild rabbit, has eaten my cucumber plants and more than half of my sugar pea plants. Now, since seeing Cinnamon 4 years ago, I am pretty sure this one is not the same, but one of many offspring, but either way, we are going to have a talk. In my usual style, after riding more than 16 hours on the bus, I promptly went to Home Depot (in the rain), and bought fencing, stakes, and more veggie plants. My chores are laid out for the day. Such are the ‘things’ I am trying to conquer.

I also came home to a lot of cleanup from the recent storms. I had branches in my yard from trees I didn’t recognize as my own. Not a big deal. God sends some branches my way, and I am getting my fire pit ready. One of my rituals when I am home is to walk the damp morning grass (or snow-covered grass) and collect my thoughts. It’s amazing what kind of weeds can grow in 10 days with heavy rains. Looks like the next couple days are more landscaping catch-up days. And probably finding the number of a lawn service.

But none of these words I am spouting are complaints. I am in a very, very happy touring situation now, and the musicality of Phil and company is staggering. The venues we are playing are fantastic – perfect, really – and as I look ahead to this summer, I can’t wait to get out in the festivals. Of course, the past few weeks have been pretty incredible, too.  I think last time I checked in here I spoke of Florida.  It seems like years ago…

We played a show at the Univeristy of N. Florida in Jacksonville.  I wish I could say that we did something crazy, but we didn’t.  We were paired up with Rodney Atkins, and we stayed at the venue the whole day.  I did manage to play the first football in a while indoors that day, beating the youngsters in the band.  I like to think I still have some gas in the tank.  We played and skee-daddled down to Hollywood, FL for a private function.  I walked off the bus, took a few short steps to the East, and this is what greeted me…

There’s a big slice of heaven to me.  Remember that just a week earlier I was trudging through 17 inches of snow to try and find the Green Bay museum, and we left 40-degree temps in Nashville for this particular run, so I think we were due.  Don’t worry – I took full advantage of the time.  I was the pale kid in the water and by the pool.  First sun on my back in months.  Looking forward to getting some color again, too.  If you have the chance to stay in Hollywood, check out the Westin.  The bathtubs (big enough for 4!) open up to the rooms, and you have views of the water on all sides.  Intercoastal on one, beach on the other.  Can’t lose!


There’s my little travel brochure for the good side of Florida.  You don’t get any poolside pictures until a few hundred more miles on the bike and a couple thousand crunches. But I am working on it!

So enjoy the pictures of paradise, and I will get you all ramped up from the past run, which was a 5-show run all over the place but sooo much fun.  Thanks for your patience, and I will see you all tomorrow.  (Or, knowing me – the next day).



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