Sunday, November 23, 2008

Dr. Pepper's Chinese Democracy

If you hadn't heard Dr. Pepper jokingly said in the press earlier this year that if Guns N' Roses released their album Chinese Democracy this year, then Dr. Pepper would buy a free drink for everyone except, Buckethead and Slash, two of GnR's guitarists through the years.

Well that day finally came. And how could you blame Dr. Pepper for taking a bet they didn't think they would have to pay out on. Chinese Democracy has been some 15 years in the making and has been rumored as coming out by the end of the year for the last 7 years.

It took some patience but I was able to get my coupon from Dr. Pepper for a free drink. I also picked up GnR's Chinese Democracy and I must say that after a few listens I'm impressed.

Thanks Dr. Pepper, thanks Axl. This drink is on me you!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Six degrees

Today I'm in NJ as part of an executive management training program through Columbia University. Tonight we had a great treat and were able to see Chris Washburne and the Sytos Band, a Jazz combo, as part of the program.

Tonight was part of our leadership training and the Jazz combo was used to illustrate team dynamics. Some of the questions we asked centered around how does a Jazz team prepare, what happens if you don't like your team members, how does the team recover from mistakes, along with questions to the band regarding the popularity differences from country to country of Jazz worldwide.

Chris Washburne and the Syotos Band
November 11, 2008
The Heldrich Hotel
New Brunswick, New Jersey

Epistrophy (Thelonious Monk)
Killer Joe (Benny Goldsoon)
I Thought About You (Frank Sinatra / Miles Davis)
Caravan (Duke Ellington)

This combo was as good as it gets, and the environment in which it was presented were ideal including the setting of a hotel bar, 20 ft high ceilings and carpet with only 30 people. This made for the perfect acoustics although in an imperfect environment.

Over dinner the band sat with us and by a stroke of chance I ended up sitting by the drummer, Vince Cherico. We had a fantastic conversation and talked about his experiences, my experiences, and some of his friends including Kenny Aronoff. As we talked I discovered that Rufus Philpot was a bass player that he played with in his past and is someone that I'll be playing with in Seven Seraphim in Feburary. It is such a small world. I can't believe that as part of an executive training course through Columbia University that I met a Jazz Drummer from New York CIty that has performed with a bass player I'll be performing with in Los Angeles. This makes me only 2 degrees of separation from the band tonight. David -> Rufus (1) - Rufus -> Vince (2).

Vince and I exchanged information and I hope to meet up with him next time he is performing in Los Angeles. In addition to seeing him perform I hope that I'll be able to take some Jazz / Latin drum lessons from Vince.

The band was extremely generous with their time and even gave us CD's. I can't wait to hear it when I'm back home.

This week has required significant focus and a lot of work, but after an evening like tonight I feel that I've been rewarded through music which is so important to me, and I've made a connection with many of my team mates that are part of the organization I just joined.

I have one more day left in NJ but I don't see how it can get any better than this.

Monday, November 10, 2008


I am in NJ all week. On the flight in I had a great view of the city and was able to see the Statue Of Liberty on the approach.

I am not sure if I will get to see the city this week but it reminds me of how much there is to see and do herem

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

President Elect... presented by the KISS Army

KISS has been running on their website a Choose Or Lose campaign to encourage people to vote. As part of the campaign they have been selling Obama and McCain KISS Army shirts and will be publishing the winner of the KISS Army vote by the number of T-Shirt sales.

In recognition of the President Elect here is Obama presented in Paul Stanley makeup by the KISS Army!


PS. Mom - there is always 2012 :-)

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