That is why I do this.

Strange Land had a show last Friday at a place that shall remain nameless here. I am the diplomat of the band after all, not that you can't all go to the web and find out where it was. It was out first show at this venue and our first within about 70 miles of this place. I thought we made this clear to the venue. We're interested in expanding our territory and reaching new people. Details were sketchy about the show until a few days before. Then, it looked like we were on a bill with five other bands. The whole show started at 6, we were told to be there no later than 10. Ok... looks like we're last. No biggie, with 5 other bands there should be a decent number of people hanging around.

Ah, but it's never that easy. From 6-10 it was an all ages show. We were indeed last and the band that was supposed to be before us didn't show. I thought, fine, we'll go on around 10:30 then. Promptly at 10 all the under 21 people were booted out. The band in stage at the time finished their set with a pretty good crowd still there. But for some reason the venue made us wait until 11 to start. In that time almost everyone left while the cover band got started upstairs (don't even get me started on cover bands. I'll lose my diplomatic immunity). Since the band we we're booked with didn't show none of their people were there. So most of the night we had five people. We managed to snag a few others in passing from upstairs. Add to that, the sound guy was pulling double duty due to an emergency. He was running up and down the stairs doing sound on both stages. He loved us though. Sound guys seem to like us because we don't sound like every other band they have to sit through. At one point Brad's vocal mic behind the drum kit was feeding back and he just unplugged it. We didn't have Brad singing for most of the night. Such is the nature of live shows. Shit goes wrong and you either roll with it or you collapse.

All that said, this was one of the best shows we've had in a while. We played well. We had fun on stage. And the crowd that was there was engaged. I have so much fun when I can interact with people from the stage. We cracked jokes. I got everyone to introduce themselves. We laughed. I may take my music seriously, but I don't take myself seriously. It wasn't my show. It wasn't Strange Land's show. It was our show, band and audience together.

I've played a lot of shows for many different kinds of crowds. I'll take small and enthusiastic over large and indifferent any day. I'm they guy in the band who isn't gung ho to play out. I prefer writing and recording. But for shows like this I will always come out and I will enjoy playing on stage. All I need to do to be successful is reach one person. To make one person laugh. To know that one person understands what I'm trying to do. For one person to feel like I understand them because of a song we wrote. We got lucky, we reached more than one last week. And that is why I do this.

Special thanks to Progulites Iceman and Falcon for coming out. It's cool to meet hardcore prog fans and to put faces and real names to the chat board nicknames.


Paint A New Picture

All the time we spent
What was the return worth
What meaning we found we had to
Let it go
Say goodbye
Paint a new picture
Of a time gone by

I know you didn't mean to
But you did anyway
From all the grief I've learned to
Let you go
Say goodbye
Paint a new picture
Let the loss subside

You've got a long road to go
I would have helped along the way
In all the desolation you've got to
Let me go
Say goodbye
Paint a new picture
Leave my ghost behind



I'm tired.

Tired of rhetoric. Tired of arguments. Tired of misinformation. Tired of lies. Tired of people stating opinions as facts. Tired of people using misinformation and lies to support their opinions. I'm tired of the game that people play to try to force everyone to be like they are. Freedom is freedom. It isn't "free if you're like me." I'm tired of watching people emotions being manipulated. I'm tired of watching the middle ground vanish.

I'm tired of people thinking I'm offensive when I express my opinions. I try to share them in a rational way and if I'm trying to support an argument I do my best to deal in real evidence and not in fear and hate and made up crap. All I want is for people to think rationally but that is obviously too much to ask. I'm tired of seeing the fear of the 'other' be replaced by automatic hate of the 'other'.

I'm tired of showing people respect and getting none in return. I think it's ok for you to live your life the way you choose, why do you think it isn't ok for me to choose for myself? You've made a choice for your life and you think that it gives you some kind of moral superiority to look down on me? I think we can have disagreements and we can have discussions and still respect each other. But apparently if I disagree with you I'm an idiot. Or, at best, you'll just assume that you are right and I'm wrong and I'll figure it out when I go to burn in hell. I don't assume I'm right but if you want me to agree with you then provide some tangible evidence. No evidence? Well fuck you. Is that better? That's as close as I will get to playing on your level.

I'm tired of being misunderstood. I'm tired of being in a minority. I'm tired of being distracted from what really matters to me.

I'm tired.