Saturday, June 09, 2007

Serious Eric Slick withdrawal...

This is a "best of" clip from the early years of Rock School. At around 2:00 into the film, you'll see Julie on stage the night of the Edder Vedder/Ann Wilson show in Seattle. Well, actually, that's Julie in said shot right on the screen before you even click "play". I'm pretty sure that's Eric on drums throughout the soundtrack even while they are showing other kids, but at around 1:00 toward the end of the film, it's all Eric and a drum solo...I think this is from the spring of 2005...before he toured with Project Object and Adrian Belew and he's gotten even better if that's humanly possible so, like, if you haven't heard him play live should!

Oh, that's also a very young Eric at the end of the clip, and most of the photos shown hanging on the wall at Rock school at the beginning were taken by proud father Gary Slick.

Here's the current Belew tour schedule as per Jam Base...though we've also just learned of additional dates added during September 7-16...could it be the west coast?

I'll let you know as soon as I find out, but in the meantime, how's this for a tease. Adrian sent Julie and Eric a bunch of new songs a couple of days ago to learn to incorporate into their set and when I heard them I had the chills. Nope, I'm not saying which songs they are, but Eric made the funniest remark to me after opening the MP3s and listening.

"I am in music nerd heaven," he said.

"Why is that, Eric?"

"Because I have in my possession something music nerds all over the world would salivate over...Adrian sent me separate track is just vocals; the other is just instrumental."

Heh. If you knew which song I was referring to and you are in fact a music geek, you would be clutching your heart right now.

And if you knew the reason why he sent it that way...

Meanwhile, as the title of this post says, I am in serious Eric withdrawal right now. He left yesterday for The Bonnaroo Festival which is in Manchester, Tennessee, and begins on Thursday, June 14. The reason he left so early is that he is driving down with band mate Yanni Papadopoulos, guitarist for Philadelphia's power trio Stinking Lizaveta, who has a family reunion to attend somewhere along the way.

"Eric, so you're going to a Big Fat Greek Wedding?" I teased him.

"Something like that," he grinned.

"Um, so where are you staying during Bonnaroo? Do you have a hotel?"

"No, Yanni is bringing me a tent. It's like Woodstock, Mom."

Oh my god. Since he's not around to read this, let me just say that Eric is my son. He's never gone camping in his life (well, I went once and will never do it again unless I am assured of indoor plumbing, an electrical outlet, and an air mattress. Oh, and good weather)...and he prefers the W Hotel, too. In fact, when we were forced to stay at that Bates Motel in New York over the Christmas holidays, he was just as freaked as I was though he didn't let's only been during the following months that he's brought it up as one of the more horrifying experiences of his life.

So I'm watching Eric pack yesterday and I see he's only got a thin sleeping bag I bought him like fifteen years ago for an indoor slumber party.

"Eric, what about a pillow? In fact, what about two pillows?"

"Are you sure?"

"Oh, I'm sure."

Then Yanni arrived to pick him up and I said to Yanni, "Doesn't Eric need pillows?"

"Oh yeah."

Eric I think probably wanted to kill me for overdoing the Jewish mother bit but I couldn't help it...he's going to be sleeping in a tent for a week with no shower in god knows what kind of weather conditions (and of course I saw that there were tornado watches in Tennessee a few days ago), playing four rigorous sets of music, living on festival food (not good, especially if you are a vegetarian like Eric)...and then going to Adrian Belew's house straight from there for intensive rehearsing...two days after which the tour kicks off in Nashville.

I teased Eric a little more.

"Oh my god, no shower for how many days? Martha (Adrian's wife) is going to make you stand outside and attack you with a hose before you are even allowed in the house!"

Just kidding, Martha would not do or say that, but Eric replied:

"I'm going to say hello and head right for their bathroom!"

But once I started kidding him, I couldn't stop.

"You're not going to immediately crash in Robert Fripp's bed?"

Ha ha - when Julie and Eric stay at Adrian's house, they stay in the "Robert Fripp suite", which is where Robert resides adjacent to Adrian's basement studio when he is a guest at Casa Belew.

If you read Robert's diary, you kind of get the idea that he would definitely not like the idea of sharing his bed with the unwashed.

But hey, neither would I! And neither would Eric.

Oy. I am going to have to try very hard not to worry non-stop about him over the next week. Everything from monsoons to tic bites to him getting sick, period. This motherhood stuff. It never stops, does it?

Anyway, Eric and Yanni are performing all four days at the festival with Gypsy Hands Tribal Belly Dance Troupe. Eric is playing something called a doumbek, which is part conga, part tabla, part bongo...I dunno...all I know is, he taught himself to play it via a DVD and you should hear him. In fact, I bet after Bonnaroo is over and Yanni drops Eric off at Adrian's home in Nashville for rehearsals next Sunday (where he will meet up with Julie, who is flying in from Philadelphia) and Adrian sees Eric with that doumbek and hears him play it...hahahahahaha...I would not be surprised to see it make it into one of their songs.

Or not.

Here's what a doumbek looks like:

So yeah, I'm in serious Eric withdrawal. He has a calming presence on me, and since I'm home writing all day and he's home practicing drums all day, we've been spending a lot of our down time together. He really is an awesome human being.

Julie just wrapped up her final full semester at Drexel fact, she could have marched with the other graduates but since she still has a few classes to take in the fall and her boyfriend attends Drexel as well, she opted to march with him in June, 2008 when he graduates...assuming she's not on a world wide tour, that is. But anyway, Julie and I will probably spend a lot of time together this coming week...we have a bunch of new restaurants to try like Melograno at 22nd and Spruce. Mmm...can you say "roasted artichoke surrounded by charbroiled sea scallops, drizzled with a tangy lemon herb sauce" or "fresh ravioli filled with roasted beets and mascarpone cheese, finished in a light butter sage and poppy seed sauce" or "fresh sea bass fillet braised in a light tomato sage drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, served with garlic mashed potatoes" or "pan seared pork tenderloin, served with a savory apple vodka cream sauce, accompanied with braised savory cabbage, pinenuts and raisins"?

Yeah, yeah, it's already been established many times in this blog that Julie and I are food freaks.

We also need to do a major shopping trip for all new tour outfits...dressing Julie for her gigs with Adrian is like dressing the world's most beautiful Barbie doll...I get so excited in the store that naturally she has to keep telling me to calm down.

Who, me? Calm down? Impossible! Just ask my blood pressure doctor...

Ugh, speaking of doctors, I've been sick as hell all week with some kind of respiratory infection and naturally every time I feel this bad, I think that's it, I've got something fatal. I was never a hypochondriac before, but after I got the melanoma diagnosis two years ago, I think every cough, every ache, is a sign that it's returned and spread. That, and not a day goes by where I don't open the obituary section of the newspaper and see the name of someone I knew...maybe someone I grew up with or went to school with...arghhh...not a good way to live, so I'm trying to rise above it and have only happy thoughts. I think as of today I'm going to stop reading the death notices...hey, at least that's a start.

And then once the Belew tour begins in two weeks, I will be so busy and full of joy that I won't have time or energy to care or worry about things that are totally out of my control which is how it should be.

Okay, enough of that. I started a new novel which is being written from a male point of view. Oy. What was I thinking?

Wish me luck.