Son Of A Glitch

Friday October 23rd, 2009 – Lake Villa, IL

Just when I thought I was starting to get a teeny tiny itsy bitsy wee little half a smidgen of momentum going in the pursuit of my dreams, BANG – here comes the old unexpected shot in the dark mystery glitch out of nowhere to throw me off course and into the ditch.

I’ve been making healthy progress on my new CD project lately. Donna Gurda has been working on the actual recording master and should have a finished product soon from the sound engineer she’s been using for years. I’ll get billed fairly and I know it’ll sound good too. Donna knows what she’s doing and between the two they’ll make sure it’s not a dud.

Today I talked with my friend Greg Phelps in Indianapolis. He’s a former comedian but has started his own business duplicating CD projects. He got off the road to spend time at home with his family and I never fault a guy for that. He’s the guy I want to have help me because I’ve known him over twenty years. I know he’s honest and knows entertainment.

Greg and I went back and forth for about a half an hour exchanging ideas of what we’re each thinking the project will be. He’s got practical experience in printing all kinds of CD projects and I wanted to see if there were any new gimmicks I could use to get noticed.

I spent an extra chunk of money on my last one because I wanted it to look professional, which it did. That was a few years ago and I had a financial cushion because I had my job at the Loop. I had the cash so I did it up right. I invested in myself and I’m very glad I did.

I don’t have that luxury now but I’ll still find a way to make it the absolute best looking and sounding product I can for whatever money I can scrape together. I know both Donna and Greg will work with me and I’ll pay them both back many times over. I appreciate the help and I’d do the same for both of them and they know it. This will be a shoestring job.

The one thing I wasn’t worried about was the cover art. Of course, that’s the part that is turning out to be the glitch. I received a phone call tonight from Pedro Bell, asking if I’d received the final copy of my artwork yet. I told him I hadn’t, and he sounded quite upset.

I’d been dealing with an assistant of his and apparently they’ve just had a major falling out eerily similar to the one I had with my ex business partner. Pedro sounded like he was near tears at first, but then explained that he needs to use assistants because he has health issues that affect his vision. I’d heard he did, but I was still thrilled to be able to hire him.

The person I dealt with kept putting off the final product, saying it would be ‘done very soon’. I assumed Pedro was either busy or in ill health and I didn’t complain about it. It’s always been my dream to have him do a cover for me so I figured waiting was worth it.

Apparently the assistant told Pedro the work was finished and that’s why Pedro was so upset. He was very apologetic and said he didn’t do business ‘that way’ and I believe him. I’d always heard he was an honest guy and I told him not to worry about it. We’ll fix it.

James Wesley Jackson used to open for Funkadelic and he’s one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met. James knew Pedro very well and swears by him and that’s good enough for me. If James says someone’s ok, that’s all I need to hear. Still, the timing is unbelievable.

Pedro said my project and another one he was working on got affected by this mess. He told me the story of how he found out and it was way too similar to mine. He said he had to fire the guy and end a business relationship that went back going on thirty years. He is rightfully upset and I told him I could unfortunately relate, but that doesn’t make it better.

I really feel bad for the guy. I’ve enjoyed his artwork since I was a kid in the ‘70s and to hear he got hosed by a business partner just frosts my ass to no end. I met him at the show when Funkadelic was in town and he is NOT a millionaire. Far from it. He works hard to make a living and apparently the guy who ripped him off has a well paying cushy job.

There isn’t much I can do about any of this other than wait for the dust to settle. Pedro’s health requires he has an assistant and I have to wait until he gets a new one in place. I am still hoping to get the CD out soon, but it won’t be Friday November 13th like I’d hoped.

Welcome to life, business, show business, whatever you want to pin this on. People just do what they do, and it stinks. I still don’t think my ex partner thinks he did a single thing wrong. In his mind, he ‘borrowed’ a ‘few bucks‘, and I ‘overreacted’. I’m still pissed now but that won’t bring the rest of the money back. Pedro and I both have to keep slugging.

I’ll get the artwork when the time is right. Pedro apologized several times and we talked for almost an hour. I wish we could have spoken under better circumstances because I am such a huge fan of his work. Anyone who knows Funkadelic album covers knows who he is, and even though most of my fans probably don’t, I couldn’t care less. It’s a huge thrill.

At least I did see the black and white sketch and it’s really fantastic. I told Pedro I loved it and he was glad to hear that. He was worried I’d be angry, but far from it. I knew he did his part, it was apparently the other guy who was supposed to finish the colorization part.

This will get fixed and I’ll release the CD and nobody will know the difference. I’m still in a good mental place and today I tried to practice more balance. Gramps would be proud of me because I’m putting in solid effort lately and even I can feel progress. I’m growing.

I had another lunch with Marc Schultz today and that’s always positive. He’s getting an interest from my Late Late Show DVD and thinks I will be getting more work in the new year. That’s great news and after lunch I went to the Gurnee Mills Mall to keep walking.

I did three full laps today and I was exhausted at the end, but also exhilarated. I listened to a Brian Tracy CD and I always enjoy his programs. He spoke about putting big picture type business plans in place for an individual life and it was really interesting. It’s a much more productive walk when I have stuff like that soaking into my brain. I’m glad I started doing it. I’ll be able to work my way through this latest glitch, but it sure was unexpected.

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