Friday is a day where I try to showcase someone awesome, someone doing wonderful things, or a business that is just doing everything it can to Rock Local and Keep the Greasy Side Down. Check here on Fridays for Ghost Writer to Fanboy out on another chosen hero with no cape!
THIS WEEK : Rosie’s House
Anybody who has ever tried to enroll their child in extracurricular activities knows that it comes with cost. Whether you are taking advantage of public school programs, or club events, those activies that do all of those things to prepare your kid to do better as they grow and compete cost money. And clubs and activites are huge deterents from kids turning to other, less productive, means to interact with the community. All of these issues are true, in many communities. For example, when I left Blue Ridge High School in Pinetop, the Speech & Debate team went away. It is still gone. Band programs, orchestra programs, choir programs are all similar. These “non essential” programs are defunded all over the place, especially in states like Arizona.
But those problems and issues are exponentially true in inner-city areas. All you have to do is go, visit, spend some time, and you will see, there are quite often two completely seperate worlds coexisting, right in front of you, beneath your gaze as you walk above the shadowy areas that are difficult to gaze into deeply. Often, we choose to ignore them. And when we do, it is our priviledge to be able to do so. We can choose to not see.
Rosie’s House gives the gift of music to children who would in all reality have never been able to get closer to those instruments that to press their noses against the glass of the sale window. And that is if there was even a store to go see the instruments in. There is no Millano’s Music in the inner city. There is no Guitar Center. Look at the three locations of School of Rock. Gilbert. Awatukee. Scottsdale. Why? The Money River. And the public school programs have vanished a long time ago, if they existed at all.
Rosie’s House is celebrating 25 years of service to Phoenix. Where children from needy families can qualify for a multitude of musical programs. As a 501c3 non-profit organization, they are able to channel those funds to the kids that would never have had these opportunities. The opportunites to hold an instrument their parents could never afford to buy, and there is nowhere to rent from, even if they could afford to cut into their budget to do so. Imagine all the desire in those young eyes. Imagine the continual pain of always having to say, “No“.
Rosie’s House gives kids the chance to hear yes. Yes, you can learn how to sing. Yes, you can be a mariachi. Yes, we can teach you the violin. Yes, you are good enough.
I was a teacher in a very interesting place in Arizona. A place where affluent kids from Pinetop, mixed with Apache youth bused in from McNary and White River on the White Mountain Apache Nation. A place where the socio economics of the community are available for everyone to see, the first week of every month at the local Wal Mart. A place where some kids had access to the money river, as described in Vonnegut’s, God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater, and other kids do not even know that it exists. And sometimes, when you are the teacher that is able to say, “Yes, I can teach you that”, you see the look that comes into the face of a child that has not heard that enough.
Rosie’s House empowers children with music. That is a powerful weapon. That changes lives. That tells young people…. Yes, in a world of No. There are people, places, communites out there making a difference every single day. People filling those eyes with Yes. People filling those eyes with Hope. Rosie’s house does it by filling their hearts with music.
Be part of the change we need. There are always ways you can help others doing the right thing. A lot of times, all you have to do is show up. And say, Yes.
Now. Just scroll. I am only a few weeks in. Look at the list I am compiling for you. All Music Industry. All Arizona. We Are Coming…. Los Angeles. #AzIndie
I am convinced after 47.5 years that the entire answer to why some people fly and some people do not is fear. I think back over the last 25 years or so, and wonder often about why it took me so long to just get after it. What was I waiting for? Who was I waiting for? When we really stop, and take the deep looks, most of these answers are riddled with excuses. Well, I work a full time job. Well, I have a family. Well, I am too tired after a long day. Sure, all of these may be true, but they are not the real reason. The reason is why that matters. It is the next layer down. So, for me, that excuse was like I was waiting for permission. Waiting to be discovered by some mysterious benefactor to make all of my greatest expectations come true. I think the vast majority of us are like that. Waiting. Just waiting. And one day, hopefully for you, and hopefully soon, you realize that you just have to Run.
You may have not heard about 16 x 16. Dani Cutler has been doing her due diligence getting the word out on the FM, but I must admit, when she brought Lee Perreira to my attention, I had never heard of him. Most of us are surrounded by the miraculous. All we have to do is open our eyes, and see it. Recognize it. Be inspired by it.
Fan Boy Friday is about celebrating the people who do it. Who inspire. Who dream big. Who stop being afraid. Who Run. Lee Perreira, the Marathon Musician, is doing just that. 16 x 16’s “main purpose is to inspire others, because the depth of that inspiration cannot be measured.” He used his platform as an endurance athlete to channel money towards carefully selected charities that are dedicated to helping children, families in need, and bettering the quality of life for the community. In his first outing doing the 16 x 16, he raised nearly $25,000 for these charities. How does he do it?
He runs. 16 marathons in 16 days in 16 different Arizona locations. And then, if you are lucky, maybe you can find a cool little place and listen to him play a song or two.
You can’t change the worldDepeche Mode – New Dress
But you can change the facts
And when you change the facts
You change points of view
If you change points of view
You may change a vote
And when you change a vote
You may change the world
The world is ugly and cruel. Awful things happen to good people all of the time. People take credit for accomplishments they did not earn. Sometimes, just like Hamlet, it might be easy to wish to just sleep. And dream it away. And that…. Is fear. That is what holds us to the ground. We need people in this world – people like Lee – singing songs, running miles, acting, doing, flying….. And the world is better for it. It doesn’t take much, just a small bit of hope, and courage, to run today.
Think what you could do.
Many of you have heard of Megan & Shane.
You know, the rocking – Rock A Billy – Duo that Makes Old School Country and New School Alt Americana dance together like Contest Winners.
But what you may not know…
- School of Rock – Awatukee
- School of Rock – Gilbert
- School of Rock – Scottsdale
You know….. this school of rock……
Yeah, Megan & Shane are the Arizona School of Rock! This dynamic duo not only ought to have uniforms and capes, but offer Music Lessons that are revolutionary in terms of scope and age based learning: Little Wing, Rock 101, Performance, Song Writing, Adult Program, All Stars, and Gear/ Tech classes. With a focus tailored to Band Building, Performance, Industry Success – this is not Piano Lessons at Auntie’s House!
Almost a year ago now, I released an interview with Otto D’Agnolo just as he was beginning his new (revitalized rather) project, The Recording Artist: a show that would be released on Amazon Prime about recording with bands in the Phoenix area. At the time, I was thinking that I would do a series of articles about innovators in the time of a pandemic. I did, in many ways, with articles like The Pandemic Pivot and Unpopular Opinion, but the series as it were didn’t really ever come together. Fast forward a year, Otto is getting ready to release Episode 5 of his show, and joins local industry businesses like The Wayback Sessions and Hookworm Records that have successfully surfed the surging and changing tides of Covid and its varients.
The Recording Artist has featured over 20 bands in its first season, and Otto does it in a unique fashion. The concept of the show is the A & R department is made up of paying subscribers. These subscibers can submit bands, and help select the song the band will record in their session. When the session arrives, the band comes in and cuts all of the tracks for the song in two hours – or attempts to! The band is able to get a recording of one of their songs from the process, and Otto builds content for his program. It is another WIN-WIN for Arizona Bands and Music Industry Businesses! #TogetherWeRise
Check out THE RECORDING ARTIST on AMAZON PRIME!
When you are an independent artist, whether writing books, singing songs, or making records, you are continually having to prove yourself. Prove that you belong. When Spirits of Jerome was released I approached Barnes & Nobel Small Press Division to see if I could get my Ghost Writer Press books on shelves. You see, if you go back a few years, self publishing and vanity publishing were almost synonomous. But in todays high tech world, their is seriously so little difference. My books are produced and distributed by Ingram Spark whose parent is Ingram, one of the big three book distribution companies world wide. So it becomes much more about reaching out to independent businesses, forging relationships, shaking hands, and over time – proving that your books belong right there, next to J Jance.
One such business that has always treated me with respect and sponsored wonderful events full of fun people, beautiful conversation, and a vibrant atmosphere is the quaint and quirky Bisbee Books & Music. Next time you are down south, stop by, say hello to Ken and Craig. Tell em Ghost Writer sent you! And…. if you are in the market…. this is an incredible opportunity! Best of luck in retirement Ken and Craig, thank you for always being good to me. Keep the greasy side down!
|It’s time …We are both saddened and pleased to announce that we are looking for new owners for our wonderful Bisbee Books & Music store.|
We left behind the hustle, bustle and stress of a big city environment and moved to this incredible corner of the country in 2018. We bought Bisbee Books & Music as a “bridge” to get Craig to retirement (which he has reached, kicking and screaming), and we had an awesome time and met some truly wonderful people doing it.
While we will miss the amazing interactions with our guests, and the friends and business relationships we developed, and the business is doing very well, our life has changed, and it’s now time to move on to the next phase: retirement.
That will be retirement number 3 for Ken.
If you (or someone you know) want to be your own boss, support yourself with a relaxed lifestyle, want to stay busy but still have a lot of fun in a great location, this is the growing business for you, and it is growing quite nicely.
If you are seriously interested, please contact us at email@example.com.
Meanwhile, don’t worry, we are here to serve you as always.
Ken and Craig
“I can help you with that”, she says, and folks. She is telling you the 100% truth. Dani Cutler is the Arizona gift that keeps on giving. For 14 years she has been rocking local as the manager extraordinaire at KWSS 93.9 FM Alternative Independent Radio, but what many might now know – is that is not what she does for a living!
I owe a lot to Dani Cutler. So does Phoenix. But don’t take my word for it, this amazing boss of a music advocate is also featured in Arizona Health & Living Magazine ! Check it out here! This lady is THE Scene Mom. THE Yoda. THE Real Deal. And if you need help with just about anything in today’s fast paced social media marketing world, Dani Cutler Content Creations is your #1StopShop.
Got Indie? Got Vinyl?
I Got You.