I love my job. I really do. LOVE IT! I believe in God (I’m a Christian) and I believe that being a musician is what He put me here to do; to be loud, cause a fuss, make music and to entertain. Somehow, the cosmic forces of life always seem to counteract the blessings we receive. (Oh Lord don’t they love to “monkey up the works”! Maybe just to give us balance. Yin & Yang.) I titled this post “Sacrifice” (not because it’s an Elton John song, although I love me some Elton John songs don’t I?) Tonight, after a harsh three days, I’m thinking of the sacrifice. Not my sacrifice; being on the road, away from my family, no sleep, bad food, miles of driving, car trouble, logistics, $$$!!! but more importantly the sacrifice of others.
We broke down on the way to our first gig of the weekend in Washington, MO at Driftwood Distillery. The owners couldn’t have been kinder. They came out to pick us up and get us to the gig (Thank you Elijah and Joe), they loaned us a car to get to a hotel for the night after the gig, they fed the band the next day, they offered to let us hang out at their venue as long as we needed. They sacrificed so that we could do what we do.
The next day we spent the morning at Reichers Tire & Auto, hoping against hope that they could fix the Beast with some simple mechanic magic but it was not to be. They were awesomely kind and considerate and we appreciated their efforts to get us on the road.
Out of the blue, with no real plan in place, I received a call from a man named Dale who had heard of our distress and offered to drive us (towing our trailer) to the next gig in Jackson, MO. Dale was just getting off work when he called us and came and got us and drove us 2 1/2 hours to Jackson in time for our next gig, asking for nothing but gas money. (By the way, at one point the trailer popped of the hitch and ran under the truck and we had to stop and fix it, I really started wondering if we were cursed!!)
So we’re in Jackson, make the gig, which was a guest appearance with Eddie Turner & The Trouble Twins, and no idea how to get to Nashville! Our friend Phil Penzel offers us his REALLY nice truck to drive home in. (Phil we may need to keep this truck, it’s REAL nice!!;)
We were supposed to have a gig in Memphis but confusion and miscommunication caused us to miss it. Our friend and ally in the Blues Mr. Jay Sheffield canceled a band so that we could play but thanks to technology I found out after I’d been back home in Nashville for a couple of hours. (Thank you so much Jay for always being honorable!)
The Driftwood Distillery sacrificed by rescuing us from the side of the interstate, ferrying us all over town, loaning us a vehicle, giving us food, offering us shelter.
Reichers Tire & Auto worked on the Beast all morning and when they couldn’t fix it, they charged us nothing and allowed us to leave it in their parking lot until we could arrange to bring it home.
Dale drove us 2 1/2 hours to Jackson for nothing but his own kindness.
Phil loaned his REALLY nice truck…seriously, this thing is awesome!
My band…musicians are a special breed. I’m blessed to have met and known so many and they are all incredible. Ray Gonzales, Sam Persons and Braden Cameron stuck with me, never complained, didn’t gripe, pitched in and supported every decision I made to get us through this weekend.
My brother Keith Throneberry and my cousin Mark Holt are sacrificers after the fact. They are helping me clean up the mess that was this weekend!
If I write a post about “Sacrifice” My intention was to thank and give a shout out to all the folks that helped us get through but I read the word “Sacrifice” and it keeps reminding me of the person in my life who is and has been continually making the sacrifice; my wife Buffy Holt.
A musician’s life is a hard, stressful existence (no kids, it’s not all sex and velvet…wait yes it is…but it’s still hard sometimes…no wait, that doesn’t read well…I mean it’s difficult…seriously, it’s hard to be married to a musician). It’s feast or famine, all the time. It’s being successful if you’re away from home and being broke when you are home. It’s that double-edged sword; work is good but work makes you absent which is bad. My wife has been a soldier for the cause for almost 25 years now, actually she’s been with me since we started this so throw in the Buddy Guy years and we’re closer to 30! She is an amazing wife, mother, friend, sister, daughter, daughter-in-law, confidant and coconspirator! If you look up “Sacrifice” in the dictionary, it should have a photo of Buffy (which, oddly enough my dictionary does! Of course they’re naked photos and I love research!! I’M JOKING!! She’s gonna kill me! No my dictionary is not filled with naked photos of my wife…but if it was I wouldn’t be sad…no I’m kidding they’re in my thesaurus…BAHAHAHAHHAHA!!! I’m so dead and this heartfelt missive is in jeopardy of being dismissed because of my frivolity. See, Buffy is the supreme sacrificer!!) . Thank you my beautiful, wonderful, amazing, Buff for sacrificing for me.
Thank you to all the people that sacrificed for us this weekend, thank you to all the ones that sacrifice on our behalf constantly, and while I’m at it, thank you to all the service men and women that sacrifice on our behalf everyday so that you and I have the freedom to gripe and moan about how hard our day was. (That last sentence was, of course, for our American friends. Our friends around the world can ignore it, strike it or, better yet, apply it to whatever your situation is in your country. I pray for God to bless you all.)
This post is meant to be an addendum to the last post.
When you think about the sacrifice that others are making on your behalf, you also have to realize that these are blessings. I drove home tonight thanking God for his blessings.
Sure, I could have focused on the negative and griped about the breakdown, the transportation, the loss of gigs, etc, “Why God Why?!?!” BUT I choose to focus on the blessings;
Yes we broke down BUT thank God it was close to the gig and the owners could come and get us.
Yes we lost our ride BUT thank God that someone heard about our trouble and offered to help.
Yes we lost a gig in the shuffle BUT thank God that it was the last gig of the run, 2 hours from home and booked by a friend who will continue to support us.
Thank God that I was surrounded by positive people this weekend who lifted me up and allowed me to get us home.
Thank God that I have a partner to come home to that supports me, encourages me and loves me.
In short and in closing; THANK GOD