The Bobby Rock Newsletter #2 (2-10-2021) - Behind the Curtain
The Bobby Rock Newsletter #2 (2-10-2021) - Behind the Curtain
Hey All -
We are on a roll! So let's keep things rollin' with a few goodies this week, including a "behind the curtain" first-look peek into my next book, which is a follow-up to my last memoir, The Boy Is Gonna Rock.
As part of my beloved Newsletter tribe, I fully intend to take you guys behind the curtain regularly, as I offer an exclusive glimpse into different things I'm working on, both musically and writing-wise. I appreciate you guys joining me here.
Comments or suggestions? Just respond to this e-mail.
In This Issue:
A Short Preview from my Upcoming Book (working title) -
Will Drum For Food:
Surviving the Nineties with Clubs, Campgrounds, Clinics, and Credit Cards
My last memoir, The Boy Is Gonna Rock, takes a deep dive into the wild ride of my first major gig with the Vinnie Vincent Invasion during the infamous 80s hair metal era. The follow up—which has a good chance for a 2021 release—picks up where "The Boy" left off: on a high note. The first part of the book details my time in the studio and on the road with Nelson, a band that would enjoy a brief but fiery run atop the charts and throughout the world media. But then, several chapters in, the culture changes, and I phase into my full-time pursuits of being a drumming solo artist and clinician... and we dip down into a decade's worth of the most grueling touring and financial logistics imaginable. It's shaping up to be a hell of a read.
There is actually a lot of heavy shit in this book. I go deep into some personal tragedies and other issues that I've never fully discussed publicly. But for this initial excerpt—which is the first I've shared anywhere—I've chosen a fun and breezy recollection from the "After the Rain" tour. (Disclaimer: This is an original, unedited first draft excerpt!)
An Evening of Nunsense
One of the more infamous promotional stunts that Geffen coordinated during that first tour went down in Buffalo, New York. It was a promotion sponsored by a local radio station that was directed to all of the area high schools: Nelson would play a private concert at whichever school managed to mail in the most post cards requesting the show.
The hands-down winner, perhaps not surprisingly, was an all-female Catholic high school. I don't recall the exact number of cards these girls managed to send in, but it was an alarming amount, and certainly difficult to wrap your head around how they pulled it off. Nonetheless, the date was booked, and the show was treated like any other on our tour schedule. We would roll trucks and buses onto their campus and set up for the show in their auditorium. Basically, it was just another day at the office.
Funny thing was, even though this was an all-girl high school—and the students were able to invite siblings, boyfriends, and parents—the audience ratio of female-to-male was similar to all of our other shows: estrogen heavy! But we did our normal show to a tee, with two notable exceptions:
Throughout the tour, during Brett Garsed's open guitar solo, I had gotten in the habit of going backstage and taking a mid-show piss, before returning to the drums and waiting for his cue to bring us back up. This cue was always the same: At the end of his solo, he would launch into that classic, opening riff of Living Colour's "Cult of Personality," and we would all jump in and play a minute or two of the tune as a segue out of his solo spot. Every night, it was wash/rinse/repeat, and I had become so familiar with the general arc of his solo, that I always had a solid idea of how much time I had before I needed to get my ass back to the stage.
On this night, however, I think Brett, ever the modest virtuoso, looked out at that packed auditorium of high school uniforms during his solo, and presumed that those young girls had little interest in his world-class pyrotechnics. So, he made an impromptu decision to cut his solo short and start the Living Colour riff early… precisely as I was standing over a toilet in the girl’s locker room, fully midstream!
Talk about feeling helpless.
Man, I powered through and forced those remaining drops out of there, then sprinted back to the stage and behind my kit to find five bemused faces looking back at me, waiting in limbo and stalling! All we could do at that point was laugh and carry on with the set. Fortunately, I doubt anyone in the crowd even noticed.
The other unusual thing that night was that I bonded with a nun. For real. Her name was Sister Sharon. Don't know how or why, but it was a visceral and immediate connection... as if we had known each other in another life and had just reconnected in this one. Everyone in her camp and mine noticed the unusual bonding moment between us. Later, of course, there would be a few lewd comments on the bus about what I should aspire to engage in with my new friend. But it wasn’t about that for me (or for Sister Sharon, I’m sure). This was a transcendent experience. I was drawn to her child-like purity and refreshing sense of innocence... something radically different than the kind of thing one might typically encounter on the road back then.
We would exchange addresses and write to each other in the months ahead. And then later that summer, Sister Sharon and several other students and teachers from the high school would all come see us play at the local amphitheater at Darien Lakes... and I would have to endure perhaps the most regrettable and embarrassing moment of my life that night. Stay tuned for that one, kids.
The Case for Audiobooks
I love to read. My home office looks like a small library and my Kindle app is jammed with cool titles. However, it seems that over the past few years, it’s been harder to sit down and read consistently every day, given the daily schedule. The answer? Supplement with audiobooks! I’ve been an audible.com member for years and find myself relying on audiobooks more and more. Why? Because you can listen when you’re out for a run, hitting the weights, cleaning up around the crib, driving, cooking, etc.
Audiobooks, along with podcasts and audio-centric YouTube vids (where you can just listen without having to actually watch), are the great equalizers for when you’re looking to multitask activities that aren’t consuming all of your mental bandwidth. Audio is also great for late at night if you are trying to limit your screen time before bedtime (as the lovely “blue light” of our devices can negatively impact our melatonin levels and, thus, the quality of our sleep). Just turn the lights down low and play an audiobook instead of looking at a laptop, smartphone, or TV screen.
While I do enjoy fiction audiobooks, I tend to gravitate toward non-fiction titles… particularly biographies, autobiographies, and memoirs. I like to get into the heads of people whose work and accomplishments I admire, just to understand their background, methodologies, practice regimens, etc.
If you check out the Audible main site, you can peruse titles and hear a sample from any book you’re interested in. This is important, given the number of hours you will typically be listening to the narrator’s voice! There are also reviews to scope out. (BTW, I have no affiliation with audible.com… I'm just another customer.)
I realize many of you are likely already into the "audio thing," but I just wanted to throw this out there since I'll be regularly recommending titles moving forward.
Down & Dirty Q&A
I recently launched my very own custom-blend superfood powder called Dragon Dirt. In this section, we offer tips and insights for our kick-ass new DD community.
Today's "Down & Dirty" question is one I receive regularly:
When is the best time of day to enjoy my Dragon Dirt smoothie?
The short answer: The best time to have it is whatever time of day it's most likely for you to adopt it as part of your new routine. In general, healthy habits are formed when we can "ritualize" the new activity at around the same time each day so that it becomes a sustainable lifestyle change.
The longer answer: Here are some advantages to having the Dirt at various times of day...
The Best Breakfast - I've always preferred this high-octane type of smoothie for breakfast. You're taking in a ton of nutrition, in easy to assimilate, pulverized form, right after "fasting" through the night. It's a full meal's worth of macronutrients (protein, high-fiber carbs, and healthy fats) and basically a day's worth of micronutrients with all of the super greens, high-antioxidant fruits, and stress-busting herb and mushroom adaptogens. It's a great nutritional foundation for your day. And, if you have to miss it for breakfast, you still have the rest of the day to try and sneak it in.
Excellent for Pre-Workout - If you add the Dirt to a fruit smoothie as suggested, you're getting the same amount of high-fiber carbs that you would get in a bowl of oatmeal, which is an excellent amount to fuel a workout. Plus, the beet juice powder will raise the nitric oxide levels in your blood, which helps the arteries relax and promotes more efficient blood flow, which then heightens oxygenation and increases stamina. And, the cordyceps mushroom will jack up your ATP levels, which function as a sort of energetic catalyst to the cells... especially for those short-term burst-of-energy sequences in activities like sprinting and weight-training.
Great for Post-Workout - We can always use a solid blast of protein after a workout, and the Dirt delivers with 18 grams. But we can also use some help with faster recovery, and for that we look to superfood ingredients with anti-inflammatory properties. At the top of that list? Cherry juice powder and turmeric, both of which have some pretty decent science supporting their ability to ease soft tissue inflammation in the joints and around the body... so we can get back after it ASAP!
A Rock-Solid Lunch - If you tend to get busy in the middle of the day and don't always have time for a healthy lunch, the superfood smoothie might be your answer. Just sip on your Dirt and don't miss a beat. Too busy to stop and prepare your smoothie? No problem. Blend it in the AM, then take it with you in a tumbler or, better yet, a thermos (which won't even require refrigeration) and it will be ready when you are.
Late-Afternoon pre-Dinner - Yet another strategy would be to have your smoothie late afternoon as a pre-dinner... particularly when a large meal or massive "recreational" dinner is scheduled. The Dirt will curb your appetite and assist you in NOT overeating at that big dinner.
Dirt for Dinner: And finally, the Dragon Dirt smoothie makes for a fantastic dinner on its own, simply because it's so filling, and yet so light on the digestive system, which is a plus for your impending bedtime later in the evening.
For more info, or to try your very own bag of Dirt, scope it HERE.
All for now. If you haven’t already, be sure and take a moment to sign up in the upper right-hand corner of any page at www.bobbyrock.com. This will give you a much more customized experience, and also grant you access to various members-only areas, events, etc.
And again, let me know how I can make this Newsletter most useful to you. Just hit the reply button on this email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and talk to me. I try to respond to all of these that I can. Thanks in advance.
Until next time,