“This is my truth, tell me yours”
September 17, 2003
No one loans money to a man with a sense of humor. If you’ve ever seen the movie HEAD (featuring the MONKEES) you’d know what i’m talking about. no one wants to give you money unless you already have it. no one gives you anything unless you have everything. even if this sounds ass-backwards (it is) this is precisely the way life works. when a lion spots a slow elk that can’t keep up you think the other 200 elk slow down? no. they go even faster in the opposite direction. they live another day, the lion gets his lunch and the slow poke is history. you wanna survive? keep moving. it isn’t fair but it is the way things work.
the music business is similar to the african savannahs. although there is some brush to camouflage behind, most of us can’t run and none of us can hide. i learnt to kind of take it all in and get a good laugh. see, i’m not perfect by any stretch of imagination. i CAN’T see around corners. but i have had the interesting experience of having my career managed by people known as ARTIST MANAGERS. having someone else manage your life is like watching someone back a tank up into your driveway and right through your garage. it truly is an incredible, breath-holding ordeal at times.
these days i manage my own affairs. i am MUCH happier. now, i do have management representation in the U.K., but in the good ol usa i prefer to keep a very low profile. you have to be careful around here because most people are really only concerned with keeping their jobs. so if you have a band and BIGEGO records loves your demo, keep in mind that the dude driving the lexus who signed van halen in ’77 that says you’re gonna be huge, will HIMSELF be washing cars by the weekend. it happens that fast. of course, someone could just be released from county jail and have a hit record 2 weeks later. these are the types of things are what make america what it is today.
some people like having other people control things around them so they can have someone to blame when sh*t goes bad. i prefer to have no one but myself to blame. if i am going to fail, i want all the credit. and being a failure isn’t as easy as it looks. some people try for years with little or no success at failing. some people actually get promoted for failing. true story: i knew someone who signed rock groups and 5 acts flopped one after another and cost the company millions of dollars. after each record was confirmed a failure my friend was promoted. finally, after he had had a hand in ruining 6 bands and over 50 people’s livelihoods, he was Finally made president of the company. Hmmm. someone is a failure all their life and then is made president. (you thinking about who i’m thinking about?)
and yet these are the things that set america apart from the rest of the pack. when we say we have no money to educate our youth don’t you see we are only trying to challenge them! we got money out the wazoo. we could rebuild iraq 249 times and STILL make the Ivana Trump alimony payments on time. i mean, maybe ‘old europe’ doesn’t have the city crime, teen pregnancy, gangs and illiteracy problems we have but, heck, THAT’S HALF THE FUN! what’s that line again? oh yes, ‘ anyone who doesn’t like money never had it.’
i stopped swimming and body surfing in the pacific ocean (or at least off the coast of california and upper baja) back in 1989 because i developed ear infections and got tired of trying to get the tar out of my hair. my old house-mate, Tim, was from Hawaii and there was no way you could keep him from the waves. even after he realized his toes were turning black from the tar.
now the funny part of that story is, when i was in high school and on the speech and debate team, we debated the whole off-shore drilling controversy, as well as the pollution problems and E.P.A. regulations that were being violated in the reagan era like vietcong brothels. yet, when i was dating a girl who’s dad was vice president of a very successful california oil company, it never occurred to me to ask him about that stuff. she was attractive, rich and i just couldn’t be bothered think about anything else. many people choose money over love. this is nothing to be ashamed of. as long as you are happy. that’s my story and i’m stickin’ to it.