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Re: The Night Shift... Continues!

Posted: Mon Apr 26, 2010 11:17 pm
by WildcatOne
Thanks, Doc...hello, JTP!

It's been a very busy 10 or so days with the band. We played T-Bone Tom's in Kemah Friday before last, then a private gig at the Park Cities Hilton in Dallas the next night. Tuesday we played at the Lakeshore Yacht Club in Clear Lake for "Men Who Cook" (I think they should change the name to "Men Who Shouldn't Cook"...but it's for a good cause, charity). Friday night we were back at T-Bone Tom's with a standing-room-only crowd, Saturday night we played The Lone Star Club in Pasadena, and Sunday we played at the Blue Room in Dickinson. This coming Friday we're playing at the Aransas Pass Civic Auditorium, down at the Southern tip of Texas, and Saturday we're playing North of Houston in New Caney. We're all over the place and we're filling up every place we play now. It's great. I heard last night that we sold out the Civic Auditorium at Aransas Pass.

One experience that I think is good to mention that stood out among all these shows, is that Saturday night at Lone Star, I knew Debby was coming home that night, she'd been gone for 4 months working tax season in Missouri. I wrote a song about Debby 11 years ago and I felt a great need to play it. I asked Pee Wee if I could do that and he wholeheartedly supported me. I went to the band guys on break and told 'em what the song is and how it goes. Halfway through the next set, Pee Wee announced that I had an original song to do that I wrote about my wife. We played the song like we'd been playing it for years. I watched the dance floor fill up. Marty played a fantastic sax solo in the middle. At the end of the night, Pee Wee's wife came up to me and told me the song is beautiful. So did Ronnie's girlfriend. So did a lot of people I don't know who were there. I told 'em I wrote it 11 years ago but hadn't played in in a long time, and they were floored..."You WROTE that?" Yep. Yesterday Pee Wee told me that my song had a very huge and lasting impact on people. He said he saw women crying. The song will go on our CD. I suppose the significance of this is that this band plays "covers". We don't do original material...and the one we did that I wrote knocked everybody's socks off. The thing everybody told me is that the lyrics got 'em where they live. I kept all of it simple. The music and lyrics are very basic. Nothing fancy, just a heartfelt song. Here are the lyrics

WITHOUT YOU copyright 1999 John R. Bockelman

When we were younger
So full of love
We were sent to each other, baby
From up above

Now that we're older
I see the truth
That I can't go on living without you

I used to be careless
Living the Blues
Yes, I know I mistreated your love
Like such a fool

If you can forgive me
I'll always be true
'Cause I can't go on living without you

(I wrote you a letter and I said)
Oh, my darling, the night is so long
And when I think of all the things I did
I know I was wrong
Somehow, please forgive me
For the things that I do
Because I can't go on living without you

Every night
I was out on the town
But it was just my wicked ways
That brought me down

I take it all back now
In ten shades of Blue
'Cause I can't go on living without you

Anyway, it was a special moment for the band and for me. Pee Wee gave that song a lot of respect. It's funny...songs I worked on for years are languishing in obscurity but one that I knocked out in 15 minutes and is as simple as A-B-C is the one that everybody loves. Sylvester told me, the words cut through the nonsense and get straight to the heart. The dance floor filled up. He said that song is great...I accepted the compliment but I'm only now learning what works best. Simple is good. Cheers, WC1

Re: The Night Shift... Continues!

Posted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:09 pm
by draglist
Terrific, John. bp

Re: The Night Shift... Continues!

Posted: Tue May 04, 2010 10:47 pm
by WildcatOne
Last Friday night we played at the Civic Convention Center in Aransas Pass, down in South Texas on the coast. Beautiful place....It was a Habitat For Humanity fundraiser, it was sold out 3 weeks ago and it turned out to be a fully-decorated hot rod show and sock hop with us playing! A great evening, I sure do wish I had my camera with me for this deal. There were some awesome cars favorite was the Mercury Meteor parked out front, set up for drag racing...the next night we were up North of Houston at New Caney. It was another sold-out, standing-room-only gig. It was a high school reunion, and those folks couldn't have been nicer to us. I got the call Sunday to play keyboards for On Time Airline at La Brisa down in Bacliff. What was cool was that the guitar player, Danny D, owns a music store in League City and he was subbing for Rick, the regular guitar player who had a family committment. Turns out Danny has a band and after the gig he emailed me asking for my contact info and what songs I sing, etc. so he can get me to play gigs with his band as well...I let him and everybody in OTA know that I have a committment to Pee Wee that I made when I joined his band 3 years ago. Anything outside of Pee Wee's schedule is cool. Also, some friends of mine from the Whiskey Saints showed up and we hung out on breaks...they are going to audition for a Thursday night residency at a local club and they want to talk to me about possibly playing that weekly gig with them if they get it...wouldn't it be great if all of a sudden I had 4 gigs a week? 2 on keyboards and 2 on guitar? Heck, I love all of it. Pee Wee hired me as the keyboard player until his keyboard player healed up from surgery, then I moved over to guitar when his guitar player quit. That's been my permanent gig ever since 2006. I've stayed busy and I've been out there, I am hoping my dues are paid up now and I can get pro gigs by answering the phone when it rings (if I can hear it). I did get another call in 2006 to join a national act called the Pussycat Dolls as the keyboard player in their band. One of them had been at a gig I played and she recommended me to their manager for the tour. I was extremely flattered but I declined...I didn't want to travel. I ended up getting hired at GRI the next day, so it all worked out well. Anyway, our buddy Andy Eng was at La Brisa Sunday and he took the attached photo of On Time Airline. L-R: WC1, Danny D, David Keepman, Capt. Scott Gamlen, and Joseph Hamilton. These guys can play and they had a Sunday afternoon/evening crowd up on their feet and shaking their booties. Life is good! WC1

Re: The Night Shift... Continues!

Posted: Wed May 05, 2010 12:15 am
by draglist
Pretty great, John. But of course, if you were with the Dolls, that wouldn't be a bad show to come see you at either! :D bp

Re: The Night Shift... Continues!

Posted: Sun May 23, 2010 1:18 pm
by WildcatOne
Last night Pee Wee and I were talking about recent gigs. He said after our gig Friday night, he went over to Capone's to see what goes on there when we aren't playing there. Not much...they want to start bumping other bands off of the schedule and book us in to replace them, but Pee Wee said no. He's been on the receiving end of that deal before and so have I, and the gig money was much needed...the club management were upset about that, but Pee Wee won't do that to other bands. Those kind of things have a way of coming back around down the line to bite you...I was glad to hear that we're the top draw at Capone's, but I was proud of what Pee Wee told them. He won't cut another guy's deal. Thing is, I had to think real hard...I finally asked Pee Wee..."Pee Wee, where did we play Friday night?" He laughed. He said "That happens to me all the time...I thought I was losing my mind. Do you need to check the website to remember where we played? I do that every day!" I said yes, I do, I just don't remember where we play but I know where we're goin to play. It's a merry-go-round. Where did we play? He told me we played the dance club gig at St. Luke's...Oh, yeah...then I remembered this guy came up and asked me to give him graphics lessons. He's the president of the dance club and he wants to see if he can do some retro-styled stuff for their website. I made him a package deal for 6 lessons and he accepted. I'm going to get in touch with him later today, right now I'm listening to the Topeka audiocast. Anyway, the folks that put that deal on contracted me to make a special flyer for them and they paid me for it. It was a good deal, and they were very pleased with what I gave them. The top guy is running for congress and he does these fundraisers and stuff, I got the graphics gig for them. Cool deal there. That was Friday night. At 7 Saturday morning I was down at the opening of the Kemah, TX Common Market, playing keyboards for Scott and his band, OTA, but it was just me and Scott that played the deal. We played a smooth, easy-rolling duo gig and they loved it. An interesting side note to that was that although I didn't get any sleep at all Friday night (got home at 2:30 from the gig and had to get ready for the Kemah gig at 4:30, took a little nappie-poo Saturday afternoon) my son Nick heard me and Scott doing a quick rehearsal here for the Common Market gig and he LOVED the music...and OTA doesn't have a drummer...when he was here, Scott heard Nick practicing and remarked that he is an awesome I'm hooking Nick and OTA up. Nick gets his driver's license in a week or two and he can play all their gigs even if I can't because of my committment to Pee Wee's schedule. We're all getting together next week to run down some stuff. It will be good for Nick to learn structure, disclipine and dynamics in an old-school environment. Nick's used to playing at the speed of light with the bands he works with, but these are SONGS...and they're at a fraction of the volume. It'll be a classroom for Nick to learn in and I'm glad everybody is agreeable to the prospect. Scott sent me this picture somebody took of me yesterday morning at the Common Market gig. So last night we went right back down there to a gig at the Southshore Harbour Resort for a gala deal they threw for a kids' charity group. We were treated like kings. They served an outstanding dinner to us along with the rich people and we were treated to a speech from Richard Phillips, the captain of the merchant ship Alabama who was captured by Somali pirates, held captive for 5 days and he was rescued when the Navy Seals shot the 3 pirates standing there right next to him with a gun pointed at his back in a lifeboat in choppy seas from the deck of a US was a thrilling speech and we enjoyed every minute of it. He talked for a moment about how those guys got blown away...they were not like "Ouch! I'm hit!" and they do the dramatic falling down thing like in the movies...he said the pirates were instantly vaporized. He said he was suddenly engulfed in a red cloud. Then there were simply no more pirates. I don't keep up with what our military guys have other than emails I get...I have a buddy who was a Marine and he sends information to me about it...but it seems we have smart weapons that lock in on the target and get off a hundred rounds in a split-second, or in about the same time as it would take one of those pirates to squeeze off one shot...the weapon doesn't just shoot the target, it erases it. We played from 9:45-12, we were paid handsomely and they are booking us back for the next one they're doing in November. It's been a long weekend but it's been an adventure. Here's the link to captain Phillips' story and the picture Scott sent this morning. Enjoy! WC1,2933,514719,00.html

Re: The Night Shift... Continues!

Posted: Sun May 23, 2010 2:07 pm
by draglist
I love reading these so much and I wish I could live in Galveston. Can I do a Dorian Gray or something and live in both places? :D That's not really the story I'm thinking of but of the one where the artist makes a deal with the devil to allow him to have a double so that he can party all night and work on his art all day. That's what I feel like most of the time, wishing I could play more and in different places, but still be able to stay close to home, do my job, love my family, and see all my great friends on THIS coast... Oh well, having the internet has placed us closer to splitting ourselves between both places more than anything else that has come along. Cheers, John, and thanks for taking us along! bp

Re: The Night Shift... Continues!

Posted: Sun Jun 13, 2010 9:43 pm
by jim sanders
:lol: hey John it was JTP that taught theze guys to play back in the day.

Re: The Night Shift... Continues!

Posted: Sun Jun 13, 2010 10:13 pm
by pro70z28
You are 1 busy guy WC. That
s pretty cool, times being hat they are. Busy is goota'. 8)