Thursday, March 22, 2007

Review: Blind Man Walking - Cadillac Sky

For those who enjoy a bit of the high lonesome sound on occasion, here's a review I did for INFUZE of a terrific new progressive bluegrass group, Cadillac Sky. Check it out!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

You've Gotta Be Kidding Me!

Here's the link to a news article talking about an Ohio city's decision to pull a Dukes of Hazzard themed production due to it's racist content, primarily the use of Confederate-themed images. How sad is this world? It's the freakin' Dukes of Hazzard!

City Pulls Dukes of Hazzard

Monday, March 19, 2007

Review: Chronology Volume One - Third Day

I grew up on these guys' brand of southern styled Christian rock and although they've disappointed me with their past several albums (for my money, they've gone a bit soft in their old age!) I was able to review this greatest hits collection for INFUZE. Check it out.

Me & the Boy

Just this past week, my wife's uncle passed away and she decided to travel with her mother up to Maryland for the services. She took Peyton along, leaving me and Tyler to be bachelors for a little bit. It's been a really good time.

I don't know. There's something about times like this, with him at the age of four, that I really start to feel the pressure of the clock and calendar pressing in on me. I can still see him in my mind's eye the day he was born and we were so happy, scared, and unsure of the future. I remember him learning to crawl and to walk and to talk. And now, well, now there's no stopping him.

Just the other night as I finished tucking him in he asked if I would lay there with him for a few minutes before going out of the room. Finding it hard to say no, I lay there with my son in my arms. My heart simply melted and I told him, "Hey buddy, I just want you to know that I love you so much" and I hugged him to me tight. Tears pressed against my eyelids and I just held him.

There is an immense sense of pressure that comes with being a father. Yet, there is also a tremendous reward. I so desperately want to be the kind of father that my son and daughter can look to with pride, smiling and with faces beaming, saying to friends, "That's my Dad!" I want my kids to know that they are loved above all else by God and their parents, and especially by me. I want them to know that there is nothing they can do to make me not love them with all of my heart.

I kind of feel like I needed to just unload that right now. Thanks for letting me.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Review: Black Snake Moan: Music from the Motion Picture - Various Artists

Here's another review I did for INFUZE, this time of the soundtrack for the new Sam Jackson flick, Black Snake Moan. It's a great listen, particularly for fans of delta blues. And you'll have to read the review to find out what I think of Jackson's own singing!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Review: Glory Revealed - Various Arists

Interesting new collaboration along the lines of City on a Hill and Songs from the Voice. Here's the review I did for INFUZE:

Review: Sex God - Rob Bell

Review I did for INFUZE of pastor Rob Bell's new book. Good stuff. Not quite what I expected but equally thought provoking and applicable.

Tell the Truth

I mentioned in an earlier post that I've been spending some time, when I can find it, reading some books on writing. In addition to it being the advice of a friend, I simply thought that if I really want to do this writing thing, maybe getting some pointers is a good idea. So, I've been reading Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird and just finished reading Stephen King's On Writing. Both books were exceptional, funny, witty, and very practical. Ironically, both were incredibly encouraging as well. Writing is oftentimes a solitary occupation with few rewards save the joy of doing the work and any encouragement, even from a book, goes well in my book.

In the reading, I noticed two common threads that both authors seemed to harp upon. The first item was that in order to develop, to grow, and to truly become a great writer, one must write. Whoa. This is crazy stuff. But the simple fact is that its true. The old adage holds true here as well: "Practice makes perfect." Besides, you never know what gems might burst forth in practice. So, I'm working on that. I'm doing all that I can to make time, even when it looks like there's no time to be had, in order to simply write. And, the truth is, the more I do it the more the ideas and drive are coming. It's a little bit disturbing but its also very, very cool.

The second thing that both authors emphasized was that in order to be a good writer you must tell the truth. This isn't to say that you don't write fiction or that you don't embellish at times but simply that you write from what you know. You tell the truth. The trick, and Lamott really hit home hard on this one, is that in order to tell the truth, that also means that you've got to be willing to tell the truth about yourself. You've got to be willing to open your soul to the world for each and every one of your characters will in some way or another carry a piece of your DNA. They are a part of you, like it or not, and you've got to learn to write the truth.

I'm not sure that I'm ready for all that yet but at this point it doesn't really seem to matter. I've come this far and I'm not turning back. I hope I get better. I hope somebody reads my work and likes it. I guess we'll see.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Review: Five Score and Seven Years Ago - Relient K

Here's one I did for INFUZE of punk-pop quintet, Relient K. Definately an album worth picking up if you like that style...

Review: Some Loud Thunder - Clap Your Hands Say Yeah

Here's a review I did for INFUZE of indie faves Clap Your Hands Say Yeah's newest album. At times a bit too experimental but repeat listens help a whole lot...

Monday, March 05, 2007

Interview with Joanne Cash

I recently had the opportunity to sit down with Joanne Cash (you might be familiar with her older brother) and learn about her stories, as well as discuss her newest project, Gospel, for INFUZE. Please check it out!

Interview: Joanne Cash

Review: Gospel - Joanne Cash

Here's a review of an album by Johnny Cash's little sister, Joanne, that I did for INFUZE. A bit southern gospel with a dash of country. It's real gems are the three tracks she shares with him...

Review: All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone - Explosions in the Sky

Great album from these post-rock pioneers. Here's the review I did for INFUZE: