BILL BLOG Wednesday December 17, 2014 Yep...still got Christmas shopping to do. Thanks for asking. YESTERDAY Started with "Hits and Grins" Tuesday as our songwriter trio always gets together on that day. Yesterday was one for working at booking more shows. Starting late 2015 we will get EXTREMELY busy on the road...but have dates to fill between the start of the year and then. House concerts, corporate events, theaters, festivals you name it...we're available. If you know of someone looking to book music...think of us! You can reach out to us at email@example.com Break for lunch...then off to Music Row to write with 19 year old Nora Collins from Milwaukee who I befriended a few years ago...and I've watched her grow through the past couple of years on You Tube, and her social networks. Turns out she grew up in Brookfield, Wisconsin...a part of Milwaukee...which is where my wife and I lived for six years when I did a morning radio show for the country station there...WMIL in Milwaukee. Small danged world. She brought an idea and a melody with her...so we wrote that yesterday and had fun. She's at that point where she's looking at making the big leap and moving from the frozen tundra to Music City. 19 is about the right age...as the charts are always getting younger...not older. I'll be rooting for Nora for sure. She's already playing 200 dates a year in Wisconsin...so she's doing her part to get ready for Music City. Good luck Nora. WSM I'll be on air tomorrow morning as well as Friday morning starting at 5:30 AM. Tune into 650 AM WSM around the world at wsmonline.com. A little after 8 am tomorrow morning...one of my favorite writers in town Wynn Varble will join me. Wynn is a co-writer on the new tearjerker smash from Garth called "Mom"...but Wynn is also very funny himself. He'll bring his guitar. If I were you...I'd listen. CONGRATS To Craig Wayne Boyd who won this season on "The Voice". We were rooting for him and Blake too. Guy has spent 10 or 11 years here in town trying to make it...and now that's gonna happen for him. Life changing. And he deserves it. That show "The Voice" is a lesson for TV folks. American Idol seemed unbeatable at one time. Several shows went up against it and failed...until a clever new approach with judges spinning in chairs and having a vested interest in their contestants came along. Not to mention "chemistry". Blake and Adam are worth every dollar they pay them. They are as much a reason for watching the show...as the contestants are. We still watch Idol...but by comparison now..."The Voice" seems younger...hipper...more fun. I want one of those chairs for my house!! BY COMPARISON The American Country Countdown Awards show did not seem hip and cool though it tried SO hard with a bar, cell phones, and the mosh pit girls carrying an average age of 21 between them. Too contrived. We've got enough of those type of shows...and the ratings bore that out. It finished 4th in it's time slot for Fox. If it does not return next year...no-one would miss it...and I think that includes a lot of the artists. I do appreciate how they tried to show off the songwriters in this town...but for the most part...for me...it was truly unwatchable. TODAY Off to Music Row this morning to write with Steve Dean and Paul Bogart which will pretty much wrap up the songwriting for 2014 as I'm getting ready to turn my attention to the holidays. Plus...I'm allowing more time to be on WSM through that period of time. I always post when I'm going to be on air in my calendar at billwhytecomedy.com...so you can check there if you have interest. Weather is calling for a wintry-mix here tomorrow...which means 1/4 inch of white stuff will cause a panic and Nashville drivers will just pull over and abandon their cars. Sigh. Guess I better go out and put the chains on. Have a great Wednesday!
BILL BLOG Tuesday December 16, 2014 Busy Tuesday. Extra coffee please. YESTERDAY I wrote for the first time with proud Alabamian Andrew Pope. You can always tell the Alabama fans. They wear the clothing...red...big A. Andrew's a country boy...and I like that. Friends with the guys in the group Alabama...pretty good company to keep for sure. So I made a new friend...and we wrote a pretty cool commercial drinking song. You can't get enough of those. A productive day on Music Row. LAST NIGHT Curled up on the couch with a bowl of my wife's chili...flipping back and forth between the MNF game...the movie "Bucket List" and the American Country Music Countdown Awards Show. For the most part...the Countdown Show could not hold my attention. Part of the reason being that we've had such a glut of these kinds of shows that I've had enough. I can't remember who won what anymore on which awards show. Oh...I do know that Luke Bryan won a big award which lets me plug my "Luke Bryan" song that I wrote with Cledus T. Judd, Colt Ford and Chris Clark. It's a parody to the Alan Thicke song "Blurred Lines". You'll find it on You Tube. EAST BOUND AND DOWN That was the iconic song used in Smokey And The Bandit...the movie starring that singer Jerry Reed. Oh yea...Burt Reynolds and Sally Fields were in it too. I bring that up because the "Bandit"...that black Trans Am he drove just sold at auction for almost half a million bucks! I remember seeing that movie more than once...in Bowling Green Missouri at a tiny theater off main street. Laughed my butt off. Hopefully the new owner will treat her well...and hang a cowboy hat on the radio antenna a time or two. (If you know what I mean) SIGNS YOU'RE IN NASHVILLE This morning...6 AM...at my McDonald's...I hear guitar music. Dude brings in his guitar...with a bunch of lyric sheets...and he's playing and talking music with another dude. McMusic if you will. Only in Nashville folks. MUSIC TRIVIA Millie Kirkham passed at the age of 94. I know. Her name means nothing to you. But you've heard her voice...many times...trust me. She was a background singer...sang on "He Stopped Loving Her Today" and hits for Roy Orbison as an example. She also did those high "ooh...ooh...ooh" parts on Blue Christmas for Elvis. Elvis hated the song. He told the musicians and singers to just be crazy and do whatever they wanted. So Millie added those "ooh" things you hear on that record. When completed...Elvis told them...they'll never release that song now...which was his hope. The rest of course...is musical history thanks to one Millie Kirkham. SPEAKING OF MUSIC The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame will induct six new members. My fave? Bill Withers. "Ain't No Sunshine" and "Lean On Me" are reason enough to be inducted. Congrats. HAPPY BIRTHDAY To my buddy Bill Cody...the morning dude at WSM. I'll be filling up his shoes if I can this Thursday and Friday morning at 650 AM WSM...listen worldwide at wsmonline.com. I'll have a couple of special guests over those two mornings...so listen in. TODAY A double day of writing...which I don't do a lot anymore. But this morning I'm with my "Hits and Grins trio. We gather every Tuesday. Today we'll take care of some business and run some tunes for our Friday night Christmas show at Puckett's starting at 9 pm. And this afternoon I'll trek back to Music Row to write with a young Milwaukee friend Nora Collins who I've been keeping up with. She's making some noise in Wisconsin...and hopes to do the same here someday. We'll try to write something she loves today. May the rhymes be with us. Have a great Tuesday!
BILL BLOG Monday December 15, 2015 Good grief...10 days til Christmas. THE WEEKEND It started with a trip to Huntsville on Friday for a corporate Christmas show as my "Hits and Grins" trio joined our friend Jim Parker down in Huntsville to play at the Meza Luna Restaurant for a company that posts internet deals for consumers. The restaurant was in a mall...so we had time to shop a little before lasagna and then our show. Steve Dean and myself bought nothing...Victoria Venier filled up a bag or two...or three. Our trio is blessed to be sponsored by Epiphone Guitars...and we all love ours. I'm thrilled with my Masterbuilt guitar they gave me so you can imagine how my heart fell when I was walking away from the stage and hear a loud musical bang! Yep...the guitar fell off it's stand...off an elevated stage to the floor. I was sure the neck would be broken or worse...but the guitar apparently fell flat on the strings...and there was not one mark or blemish on it...AND...it stayed in tune! My admiration for how well built those guitars are jumped immensely. I'll be playing that guitar...thank goodness...this Friday night at Puckett's in downtown Nashville for a 9 pm show with "Hits and Grins"...and then again this Saturday morning at the Country Music Hall of Fame with my friend Steve Dean at 11:30 AM as part of their songwriter series at the Ford Theater. Come see us if you can. A REMINDER It's been about 5 or 6 weeks since I've been on the radio. A large part of that was because my wife and I were in Gulf Shores for most of November. But...that's all about to change. I'll be on the morning show this Thursday and Friday from 5:30-10 am with Jonathan Shaffer as the two of us fill in for Bill Cody and Charlie Mattos. Should be fun...and we'll play a lot of Christmas music for sure. Don't forget you can listen in on your computer at wsmonline.com AWARDS KAZOO Just what the world needs. Another Country Music Awards Show on Fox tonight. Geez. This one is the American Country Countdown Awards Show. This is the fourth major awards show for country...and I'm starting to think that if we can add a couple more...every person who calls themselves a country singer will get an award. I had the pleasure of hosting the American Country Countdown show three or four times filling in for Bob Kingsley who hosted the show before Kix Brooks. So I have a small vested interest...and will probably flip back and forth between the show and MNF. EVENING IN THE ROUND My friend and "Evening In The Round" partner Linda Davis sent me a text from Ohio at her next stop on the Kenny Rogers Christmas tour. The text was about what a friend sent her...another one of those funny business combos. You know...where one store does two things? This one sold "live' bait...AND fine wine! So...you can buy a bucket of worms and some pink Zin all in one stop. Put on a pair of waders and pour a glass. Love that. A reminder...our "Evening In The Round" show has a road tour coming up the first weekend in January. January 8 in Hot Springs Arkansas at the Five Star Dinner Theater. January 9 Tyler Texas at Liberty Hall. January 10 at Christ Fellowship McKinney, Texas Check my calendar at billwhytecomedy.com for details on these shows. TODAY Back to the writing table. First time writing with young Andrew Pope who's from Alabama and likes Hank Jr and Travis Tritt and more traditional country. So...we'll try to put something together that he'll love. Have a great Monday!
BILL BLOG Friday December 12, 2014 Good morning for foggy Nashville. Fog is thicker than a wrassler's thighs this morning. And...I had to dig for an ice scraper to clear the frost off my windshield at 5:30 as I left for my coffee and paper run. Geez. Tis the season I suppose. I thought perhaps the fog was REALLY thick when I filled up the tank this morning. I was looking for a bill of 20 something bucks or so...and it clicked off at $15! Amazing what a difference it makes in the bill when the cost per gallon is $2.19 compared to $3.80 or so not that long ago. I kinda like those kinds of surprise. YESTERDAY I did my first real Skype writing session yesterday with two friends. Flipped open my Mac Book at Steve Dean's house...dialed up Brent Burns in Gulf Shores...and over the two computers we wrote a new beach song for Brent that may be included on his next album he's working towards. I suspect it will be there as the song turned out great...with a huge smile or two in it and should work well for my Trop Rock buddy. Technology is a great thing if you can just figure out how to use it. While we're looking at Brent long distance on the computer...I have a word document open where I'm typing in lyrics and erasing and replacing as the song was being constructed. When finished...I boot up Garage Band in my computer...and record the song with Steve singing it...edit it...then convert it to an mp3...and a couple of minutes later I've sent both of my co-writers the lyrics and the audio for their files. We started at 10....were done by 1. Pretty amazing stuff really. I see doing more of this with writers in the future. And now if I can figure out how to "photo-shop" my "live" image on the computer...THAT would be great! A RETIREMENT Congrats to John Kiesewetter who is retiring after many a year with the Cincinnati Enquirer newspaper as their media/entertainment guy. John wrote more than one article through the years about me and my radio career when I was on air in Cincinnati. Recently he was in Nashville for a couple of days and we had dinner and talked Reds baseball...and then he wrote a nice article about what I was doing here in Music City after coming off the air in Cincinnati several years ago. It was nice of him to do. And he always treated me nicely through the years. He appeared "live" on my radio show many times to talk about new TV seasons and the new shows. I appreciate him...and his writing and fairness through all those years. I expect to see my friend taking in even more baseball games now...and he deserves it. Congrats on your retirement my friend...and your friendship through all these years. GREAT QUOTE Kudos to Charlotte Panther QB Cam Newton who was in a wreck that most of you know about where his truck flipped over 5 times. News camera showed him laying down and smiling at the scene. He had good reason to smile...he was still alive. He addressed that at a news conference in an eloquent way yesterday after a reporter asked him how many football games he thought he would miss? His reply was awesome. "Who cares when I'm coming back? I'm just thankful to have breath in my lungs." Can I get an Amen? Every day breathing is precious. I take none of them for granted anymore. None of us should. TODAY I'm meeting up with my "Hits and Grins" pals at about 2:30 pm and then all three of us head south of I-65 for a private show tonight in Huntsville, Alabama. Our friend Jim Parker from Huntsville set up this show...and he will join our circle tonight too. Should be great fun! Thanks to Jim for having us. Then this weekend...gotta start thinking bout adding ornaments to our bare tree...as well as sending my daughter Heather back to her base in Miami tomorrow morning. We've had for a couple more days this week...and that never gets old. Have yourself a great weekend.
BILL BLOG Thursday December 11, 2014 Everybody is seemingly getting fatter according to health reports. I'm greasing our chimney today to make sure Santa can get down with the goodies. YESTERDAY Our daughter Heather flew back into town for a few days. Her mother picked her up at the airport about the time I had to leave for my Christmas songwriters round last night at Douglas Corner so I have not set eyes on her yet. Sound asleep upstairs in her bedroom. It always feels good knowing she's under our roof again...even if it's for a short while. She just got back from Brazil again...a country she seems to love...and will have a busy December flying around the world for American Airlines...including a flight on Christmas itself. I see packages opening Christmas Eve here at the Whyte House. THE SHOW I had a great time last night at Douglas Corner as a guest of my friend Linda Davis who co-hosted an original Christmas music songwriter round. Linda and her husband Lang were terrific as always...and they called me up to do a couple of tunes. I chose "Blue Light Christmas" that I co-wrote with Jim McBride. The song was Jim's idea about a family that's always missing someone at the Christmas dinner because they were arrested. The chorus starts out..."It was ho ho ho from the po po pokey"....so that gives you an idea. The co-host of the show last night was a former cop...so you can imagine that the song went over pretty well. The other song was "I'm Getting Scrooged For Christmas"...a song I wrote with Steve Dean and Daisy Mallory. It was fun hearing a little Christmas laughter from the audience who gathered to raise money for a good cause. I heard some other great writers...meeting all of them for the first time so that was good too. The event organizers got lucky because Linda had a hole in her Christmas tour schedule with Kenny Rogers allowing her to help out...and thus invite me. Kenny's tour manager of 31 years was in the house last night...nice guy...and Linda texted me later that she was back on the bus for the next tour stop... (busy huh?) and told me that he was telling all the tour members about the funny songs. We call that getting paid in other ways than in dollars. So now I've got my hopes that Kenny Rogers will sing "I'm Getting Scrooged For Christmas." Hey...a guy can dream. STREAMING MUSIC And here's another example of why so many publishers, record labels, artists etc are imploring congress to do something about the payouts on streaming music. Pharrell Williams...on "The Voice" this year....had 43 MILLION plays on Pandora. Guess what his payout was on 43 MILLION? $2,700. Over 80% or more of all songwriters in this town now supplement their income with other revenue streams. Did I pick a great time to be a songwriter or what? TODAY Off to do that Skype songwriting session this morning with Steve Dean here in Nashville...and my friend Brent Burns down in Gulf Shores. We're gonna need make up before we look at each other on computer screens me thinks. Three technically challenged dudes trying to Skype this morning. This might be interesting. Then...a little time with my daughter if I'm lucky. Ahead? A private show in Huntsville tomorrow night with "Hits and Grins"...on the air from 5:30 AM to 10 AM next Thursday and Friday on 650 AM WSM A "Hits and Grins" show at Puckett's in downtown Nashville next Friday night December 18. And next Saturday December 20...a songwriter show at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum...inside the Ford Theater with Steve Dean at 11:30 that morning. Hope to see some of you out front at some of those. Have a great Thursday!
BILL BLOG Wednesday December 10, 2014 15 days til Christmas. Nope. Not bought a thing yet. I see me in a convenience store Christmas Eve. YESTERDAY Our "Hits and Grins" trio got together to rehearse for our private Christmas corporate show in Huntsville with our musical friend Jim Parker. It was an eventful few hours as we grieved some for our trio-mate Victoria Venier who just lost her great dog Rascal who basically passed after a long full adventurous life. Losing a pet is like losing a family member for sure...and Victoria in particular loves animals so it's been tough. They did a smart thing I think and have already adopted another dog to provide company for Tucker....the other dog who's been in the family for awhile. We could see these two have buddied up...and will now have the run of the estate out in the pasture with the horses Victoria and her husband also own. We are sorry for the loss of the gentle dog all three of us knew and loved. The upside of the gathering was...it was Steve Dean's birthday yesterday. Since he likes them so much we should have frozen a ding-dong and stuck a candle it. A brilliant idea that hit me too late! Anyway...we are rehearsed up and ready for Friday night's show. SPEAKING OF SHOWS Another one was added to my busy calendar yesterday. Steve Dean, Wood Newton and myself will play a private corporate show in Pinehurst, North Carolina...the golf capitol of NC. The date is June 15. Wood wrote "Private Malone" for David Ball and "Bobby Sue" for the Oak Ridge Boys to name just a couple. AND...he also helped me write, "If You're Not Careful, My Wife's Gonna Leave You." Looking forward to the gig for sure. ONE MORE SHOW I'm playing an original Christmas song show tonight at Douglas Corner in Nashville with Linda Davis. It's the 3rd annual "Powerful Original Christmas Song" event...and I'm tickled to be a part of the round of writers. Should be fun. Starts at 6 pm...and for sure I'll be singing "I'm Getting Scrooged For Christmas". That tells ya something about my contribution to the festivities tonight. FRY SOMETHING Nashville is getting ready to open a TWO STORY Sushi bar. Two stories...and over 200 seats filled with folks eating bait. If they put a tank of goldfish in the place...I'm supposing the goldfish would be nervous. Look under appetizer. FAT Despite warnings and education...last year America got significantly fatter. A big jump. Biggest? Right here in the southeast. I know I've done my part....unfortunately. Of course in the south...gravy is considered a condiment....so that doesn't help. TODAY Going to try and get in and see my chiro..sore back. Hopefully he'll put me on that torture stretching machine and add half an inch to my height. Then it's rehearsing the Christmas tunes for tonight's show at Douglas Corner. Ho ho ho. Have a great Wednesday.
BILL BLOG Tuesday December 9, 2014 How many shopping days til Christmas? I don't think I wanna know. YESTERDAY Monday was a day of catching up on stuff after being gone. Suitcases unpacked and put away and my wife lit up our Christmas tree in the living room. Our daughter is in Brazil today...but home tomorrow evening...so we're planning on getting some extra help from her to put the ornaments on and put the star on the top of our tree which has been our little family tradition for awhile. Christmas has certainly become quieter through the years with her growing up...but we always look forward to it....and then her birthday which follows closely behind on New Years Eve. Already digging out White Christmas, The Bishop's Wife and The Grinch movies to watch over the holidays. I'll get to hear plenty of Christmas tunes too as I'll be on the air some for 650 AM WSM. Looks like I could be in even at the end next week for sure. I'll let you know when that firms up. HANK WILLIAMS If you check my Facebook page timeline...look for a very cool picture I posted yesterday. A couple of years ago I was in a writing session with Bobby Tomberlin and Linda Davis. We had nothing to write about in particular so we just talked...and Bobby talked about being at the Hank Williams museum...and then conversation drifted to Hank's widow Audrey Williams. It was a history lesson...as Bobby is steeped in country tradition and loves that stuff as much as Linda and I do. One thing leads to another...and we wind up writing a ghost story about about Hank Willliams wandering into the same bar night after night telling the bartender, "I'm Looking For Audrey." The song turned out great...and Bobby has personally played it for some of Hank Jr's kids and grand-kids who are musical too. Little Jimmy Dickens flipped over it (not a big flip of course) according to Bobby when he played it for him. Though it has not found an artist home yet...it has found a physical home. Bobby was in Audrey's old A-Frame cabin in east Tennessee that she built a long while ago...and hung a picture in a frame of the lyrics to our song...along with an old black and white photo of Audrey...with the family's permission. It hangs there now. That gave me goosebumps when I saw the picture that Bobby had posted. Thanks to my Luverne, Alabama buddy for making that happen. Again...check my Facebook page to see the picture. I always talk about how you get paid for songwriting in other ways than money. That story is a splendid example of that. TODAY Getting together for my regular Tuesday get together with my "Hits and Grins" trio that includes Victoria Venier and Steve Dean. We'll be getting ready for a private corporate show in Huntsville this Friday night with our good friend Jim Parker. Tomorrow night I do a Christmas songwriter show with Linda Davis and others at Douglas Corner here in Nashville that starts at 6 pm. December 19 "Hits and Grins" plays Puckett's in downtown Nashville. And the following morning...Steve Dean and myself will play the songwriter show at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in the Ford Theater starting at 11 AM. It's free with a paid museum ticket. We do three songs apiece...and field questions from the audience. Terrific event...come if you can. And oh yea...the President is in town today...so between the orange barrels and Secret Service folks blocking our roads...it could take awhile to get anywhere. Sigh. Have a great Tuesday!
BILL BLOG Monday December 8, 2014 The ocean view has given away to a lake view this morning for the blog. Home from our stay in Gulf Shores this morning...and the leaves on the tree have disappeared here in middle Tennessee. The good news for us is...it opens our view of Old Hickory Lake which gets covered up a bit when the leaves are on the tree. So...once again staring at water this morning...it's just not the ocean. I will say we could not have dialed up a better last week of weather while on the beach. It was in the 70's every day sunshine and was that way when we put Gulf Shores in our rear view mirror yesterday morning. We made a stop at a Pecan store off I-65 yesterday that was packed! Who knew? Every flavor of anything you could stick on a pecan they did. I skipped the tofu-flavored-pecan. BEFORE LEAVING I did manage to finish one song with my friend Brent Burns and the former head of BMI Roger Sovine. It's always fun to sit with Roger and pick his brains as he knows everyone in the business. The new song may wind up on Brent's next CD which he's working on right now. Roger is also a writer...and has been an artist like his father was...Red Sovine. A pleasure for sure hanging with a guy who's done just about everything in the business...and won every award...and is not retired with his wife Shirley down in beautiful Gulf Shores. NEXT TRIP? Brent and I are looking to book a concert in Gulf Shores in February. Just the two of us which is always great fun. As always...check my calendar at billwhytecomedy.com for that info. I do have one added gig...it's this week. Wednesday night with Linda Davis, Lang Scott and other songwriters singing original Christmas songs. The event starts at 6 pm this Wednesday night at Douglas Corner here in Nashville. Linda has a small break in her Christmas tour with Kenny Rogers...and invited me to join the fun Wednesday night. Should be fun. WSM For those asking...yes...I'll be back on air...and I suspect quite a bit over the holiday period. They wanted me to work this Friday...but I have a show in Huntsville with "Hits and Grins" and had to pass. But after this week...you should be hearing me quite a bit between then and the first of the year. I'll let you know what days and when right here. McDONALD'S Apparently sales are slumping. So...they're getting ready to roll out computers that allow you to "Create Your Own Taste." Pick your burger...choice of cheese...sauces...toppings etc and your order goes in. Please don't stand their and pick your buns though. No-one needs to see that. TODAY Catch up time after being gone for so long. We've got a bare Christmas tree in our living room...so this could be a long day of untangling lights. Where's Clark Griswold when I need him? Have a great Monday.
BILL BLOG Friday December 5, 2014 Final two days here on the beach in Gulf Shores...and once again I feel the sand getting heavy in my shoes. YESTERDAY Another perfect weather day here in paradise. We've caught quite the great weeks worth of weather. First week of December turned out be well beyond our expectations in that department. Although....I see the temps will be in the upper 60's back home in Nashville today. Hoping that holds up for our return on Sunday. Yesterday we caught the movie "The Judge" with Robert DeNiro and Robert Downey Jr. Good...but sadder than I expected from the previews. I think they could have edited 20 minutes out of it easily...but the performances from those two stars were worth the price of the tickets. When we came out of the movie at the Wharf in Orange Beach...a synchronized Christmas light show went off with Christmas music. All the palm trees changed colors many times...and a huge Christmas tree lit up. Pretty cool way to end a Thursday on the beach. WHAT I DON'T READ I go through a couple of papers every morning over coffee...pretty much devour both. The two sections I never read? The obituaries and horoscopes. Last time I read my horoscope it predicted I would be in an obituary some day. So...I've stopped reading both. I don't need the pressure. PETER PAN No...I didn't watch last night. "Sound of Music" last year..."Peter Pan" last night. Next year I'm hoping NBC will air "Dumb and Dumber" the musical. TODAY Off to write this morning...then some beach...and I'll probably watch some of the Oregon-Arizona championship game tonight on TV. I know...tough duty huh? Next blog from back home in Nashville on Monday. Have a great weekend!
BILL BLOG Thursday December 4, 2014 Once again looking at the Gulf of Mexico outside my condo window this morning. Keeping my eyes peeled for dolphins and those Blue Angel jets. The "Salt Life" is pretty danged good. YESTERDAY Soaking up some morning sun before it gave away to pretty thick fog late yesterday afternoon into the night. I started a new book...a John Grisham novel "The Brethren"...took in a Happy Hour with my co-writer buddy Brent Burns while my wife did a little early beach Christmas shopping...had a little shrimp...and continued the re-charge for getting back to it starting next week. We've got the place to ourselves seemingly. So quiet this time of year. A lone runner on the beach or two...no traffic...quiet...and perfect. Could I do this full time? Probably not. I've finally figured out that I have to do something to keep me moving forward and stay excited about life. But...I can certainly do this in stretches for sure. WRITING I did work a little. I had to write a parody song about the upcoming Victoria Secret Fashion show that Taylor Swift will be part of. I used her hit "Shake It Off"...so you can imagine for yourself what the lyrics say. I love my wife...but I don't see myself buying her a $100,000 bra with diamonds and jewels adorning it. Fortunately she's never asked for one. I'm also pretty sure she won't say..."let's fix a bowl of popcorn and watch those half naked models strut their stuff tonight." Don't know why. 3-2-1...WAIT! The Orion spacecraft did not launch today. I had some friends who went over to Florida to see the launch so I know they are disappointed. Too windy to launch. This is the craft we are going to try to send to Mars one of these days. I love space stuff. I hope we don't stop exploring ever. The new Star Wars trailer almost broke the internet because so many people watched it...which indicates how that kind of stuff still holds our attention. Someday folks will buy a ticket for a flight to Jupiter or Mars or the Moon or wherever like we do on regular airlines. My hope is that Hans Solo will be the pilot on the one I'm on. GETTING TOGETHER AGAIN Pretty cool idea. Brooks and Dunn are getting back together again to do a residency in Las Vegas with their pal Reba McEntire. I would think that show would do well. Following Garth...and Shania...it makes sense. The new ICON record label in Nashville have both acts as artists. The label is launched for artists like them who no longer rule the top of the charts...but still have name recognition and popularity. Radio stations are going to be launched to support those acts. So...for those who continually gripe about what's "country" and what's not...you'll have an option. Ronnie Milsap...is also on the label...so is Alan Jackson. They will record new music to be played on this station. It's an interesting experiment...and for folks like me...I'm rooting for it's success. I KNOW LIFE IS SLOWER WHEN... The newspaper I read here on the beach is promoting the "Dancing Grannies" getting together in Pensacola...as well as the Elk Lodge bingo game. I'm completely torn as to which of the two I'm going to attend. So that's my big challenge for this Thursday. Have a great Thursday yourself.