It was a great three-week breather home over the 4th of July. Loads of great b.b.q.'s, dinners out and spending time with my family. I also managed to get in the studio and jump start my own album again which has been on the back burner for last six months while I was rehearsing and beginning this tour with Neil. I ended up recording a tune I wrote over the last month while on tour and got a great new addition to what is already in the can.
Last Friday S.S. Diamondville launched on her third leg of this 50th Anniversary tour. We set sail on a happy collision course with Wichita, KS. where a splendidly relaxed and musical show was turned in by all. Wichita was followed by Houston and another seriously well played gig. Nick and I worked up a little guitar solo arrangement of the great Dean Martin hit (and Lee Hazlewood written) “Houston”. Neil very kindly indulged us to play it, all thinking it would bring thunderous sheets of applause and recognition. One thing quickly became very clear, nobody gives a fuck about Dean Martin anymore. “Houston” fell flat as a pancake in Houston. I give up.
And while we’re at it with Houston, I went down to the hotel’s very well equipped gym, quietly got on a treadmill and 5 minutes later felt the air sucked out of the place. A jive jock with a load voice, kitted up in the latest gym attire and a goddamn backwards baseball hat started greeting people in an overly enthusiastic voice punctuated with “awesome” every three or four words. Next came the thumping of speakers he’d brought along to no doubt motivate people. This also gave him reason to shout at them in order to be heard above the comprehensively shit music. The best I could tell his workout routine consisted of having people get into, and hold, a plank position then at his command hop up onto a treadmill and run like hell before jumping off and becoming a plank again as he yelled phrases of phoney encouragement at them. Speaks volumes about somebody who would sign up for that kind of thing. The whole thing certainly motivated me to get out of there quickly as possible. That aside, lovely gym.
Now Dallas. It was great seeing Doug and Sandy Rhone last night at the hospitality suite for cocktails and a visit. Doug and I were a damn good guitar team for 12 years back in the old Neil Diamond days and I always think the world of him.
From here it’s onto Denver then a hard left and westward ho.