Showing posts from December 11, 2011

Rondo's Blues Deluxe

I was almost embarrassed at the fact that I just recently heard about the death of St. Louis Blues musician Rondo Leewright.Rondo passed away this September 2011.This fact is made even stranger due to the fact that my family (on my father’s side) is really close friends with Rondo.As much as I want to, I can’t really blame my family for not getting the information to me because at the time of Rondo’s death I was in New York doing gigs.
I met Rondo in the early 90’s via my uncle, Keith Hinds, whom played drums for Rondo often at the time.In those days I was more of a local hired gun than I am now and would occasionally play with R&B, Blues, Jazz and Rock cover bands.What started off as me just visiting my uncle Kent while he played with Rondo, quickly turned into me subbing on drums for my uncle while he dealt with his personal problems. Once Rondo discovered that I could do last minute gigs unrehearsed without sounding like garbage he seemed to ring my phone off the hook. Eventua…

An Alcoholic Stole My Gig

Often I am called upon to give advice to DJs on negotiating price for various types of gigs.  The hardest gig to negotiate while keeping your dignity in tact is the bar gig.  With the advent of cheap DJ software, hack DJs seem to be falling out of the sky.  Recently, a DJ friend was low-balled on a price offering for a residency.  What was my advice to him?  Stick to your guns, prove your worth and don’t sell yourself short.  Better to not work than to work for Kaka while the bar makes money.
The point of a bar hiring a DJ is to keep people in the venue drinking.  At a recent gig, a patron came up to me while I was DJ-ing and said, “DJ!  You’re killing me, man!  My girl doesn’t want to leave.  My bar tab is outrageous.”  That’s my job, to make patrons stay when they thought they were going to leave.  There is a value in that.  Unfortunately, some club owners don’t see it that way.
Following is the totally true story of how an alcoholic stole my gig.

Many moons ago, in the days befor…