These days, having a regularly updated blog gets surpassed by the immediacy of Twitter for me. By the time I get around to thinking about writing a blog entry, I realize that I’ve tweeted my thoughts to death and its all old news! But I still find occasion to sit down and put fingers on keys and this morning is one of those moments. Life is, by definition, full of ups and downs. And while the ‘downs’ area of my life is definitely in effect from time to time, the ‘ups’ section needs reflecting on – having gratitude is important to my spiritual wellbeing, and boy do I have some shit to be grateful for right now.
To start with, one of my closest friends, Ozzy, gets honored at the MusiCare Awards in downtown Los Angeles tonight. And I will be taking part in the celebrations by playing guitar with him in a five song set. The band is his own rhythm section of Tommy and Blasko on drums and bass, and then myself and Dave Navarro on guitars, with Slash joining us for the last song. Just seeing Ozz have this night is such an amazing feeling – he’s an incredible man and deserves to be honored. And to play with him and the others is something I am truly grateful for…… we ran the songs last night and the whole thing sounded ridiculously heavy. I’m looking forward to tonight.
And at the same time, we have begun rehearsals for the 2014 Billy Idol touring – we start with dates in Europe next month, and I feel a huge sense of gratitude every day as I walk into our room, see Steve, Erik, McG and Paul, and realize I get to play guitar with these dudes all day, every day, on songs that shaped my life (and now also on songs that I co-wrote with Billy and Steve) – it’s a blast! I will be writing my usual Tour Diary over on billyidol.net so I wont go into loads of detail here, but I will say that the band sounds incredibly tight right now, and we are working up quite a few tracks from the new album into the set which is a lot of fun. Figuring out parts and sounds and weaving the sonic tapestries into a cohesive, live, rocking version of the song – it’s stuff that I never even dreamed of as a kid.
And finally, Royal Machines started the year with a few great shows, a new website, and a positive vibe. There is a love and respect between us all that feels good – and a musical connection that has been obvious at the first few shows. We all enjoyed rehearsing up new songs to cover, and Mark and Josh have been a riot to work with – constant laughter, and an understanding of what it is we do with this band. It’s for enjoyment. It’s to get OUR rocks off playing songs we like, with people we like. It’s to give back a little at the charity shows we do. And above all it’s for fun – to recapture that feeling we all had when we were kids and learning our favorite songs. We get to do that and feel that again. THAT translates to an audience and the fun that WE are having up there is contagious!! That’s the point of Royal Machines, and so far we are achieving our goal.
So today, the blog has served its purpose – to help me get in touch with the gratitude that is so important to recognize. No matter where you are in life, it is always so much easier to focus on what we DON’T have, or what is NOT going well for us – we are good at whining and complaining and comparing and judging…….at least I am…….but what is necessary for me is to take a moment regularly and recognize the good. See just how lucky I am, or how really I am always taken care of, how mostly its all part of a bigger plan that I really don’t have fuck all to do with – and that way I can truly enjoy the moments, instead of worrying or stressing about the next thing. Live in the moment and be thankful for the good bits. Seems like a good way to live to me.