The Stone Summer Story – Part 5 – STUDIO WORK – CHARLOTTE

The Stone Summer Story – Part 5 – STUDIO WORK – CHARLOTTE

I guess this is where reality meets the road.  As I mentioned in part 4,  I had decided to goto DeVry and try to get some kind of career because really I had nothing to fall back on.  KIDS IF YOU HAVE NOTHING TO FALL BACK ON, WHO FUCKING CARES, DONT DO WHAT YOURE ABOUT TO READ.

So in June of 94, I graduated and the following Monday I had to report to Charlotte for work.  So now everything is on a fast pace to nowhere.   I knew in Feb 94 I would be moving in June and my man Freddy Dean was there to help move.  In a funny story, living in the woods of Watkinsville, GA. I lived down a winding dirt road, we had to use Freds pickup to move all my stuff up to the Uhaul at the top of the dirt road.  I had this old Sears rolling tool case and when we where trying to put in on the U-Haul it slipped and almost chopped off one of my fingers.  So Stone Summer could of been done here.   Looking back in hindsight,  I dunno, yea I got a good job but what about the music.

Once in Charlotte I had every intention to keep the band going with Fred and was going to drive back to Athens every weekend or every other weekend.   Hmmm..well that worked out for like 1 month and I was over that drive.  At this time we decided to record a few tracks at Rocket Sounds in Athens GA.  I have a few observations here that I never even thought of at the time.  But basically we recorded 2 songs and working in a studio can be  pretty stressful.  I was handling guitars, and bass and most of the vocals.  My experience really came to light quick when I broke a string and didnt have a replacement and we had to basically hit a closed music store to get some.   He didnt care, he was getting paid by the hour.   Carefree Freddy Dean also had a couple issues (basically nerves) and we had to take a few breaks to just talk relax and say HEY MAN WE GOT THIS.   We laid down SATURDAY NIGHT and I SEE IT COMING EVERYTIME.  To this day when I listen to these, its like, I need the whole collection done like this.  Now here is the fuck up part,  I never even considered this at the time.  I should of paid for more time and had us lay down instrumental and rough mixes of a ton of the songs.   We never returned to a studio again and it was problem more of a symptom of me being in a new town, basically new life, and I hated that drive from Charlotte to Athens.  I think its the last few hours on just back roads which really sucks.




Freddy Dean, I believe, wanted to keep things going to as he made way more drives to visit me than I did from like 95-98.  I wont lie the new job had me working over night shifts and really at this point I started to not be very musically active.   I just dont get it, here I am in the big city of Charlotte,  new venues, new people and I never even thought of looking for musicians to play with or finding a practice spot for me and Fred.  I do remember Freddy Dean visiting us at some apartments we lived in and we tried to do some acoustic jamming and some bitches above us called the cops.  So I guess it was a few things,  coming from the woods of GA,  that I wouldnt be able to practice in my apartments ( No shit dumbass), and It wasnt until some bands I played with in 2007 did I ever even realize you could rent practice space.  All this is to say, Stone Summer was dropping the ball on music big time here.  I started to become one of these job lifers at only 1 year in.   First time living away from home,  First apartment I ever lived in,  First real job I had that I couldnt just quit, so many first that music just took a backseat,  or I expected it to come to me, not me go to it.

I EXPECTED IT TO COME TO ME, NOT ME GO TO IT.  This sounds like the same problem when I had bands going.  I had the practice space and I really dont know what Im saying other than I should of been way more mobile.   What may seem weird now since its so ingrained into everyday life now.   In 1994 I just bought my first Gateway PC and found myself online all the time instead of focusing on what needed to be focused on.  TOO MANY DISTRACTIONS.

Ill close the book on the future years with Fred.  Looking back from the years of 1994-2001.  I probably wasnt the reliable friend I should of been with Fred.   As I said he came out to me more than I ever went to him.   He came to Charlotte and also came to Daytona after I moved there in 98.  There is one event I remember when Fred wanted me to meet him in Savannah (I think he had family there) and I wouldn’t for some reason (laziness)  and after that everything was different.  Im very sorry about that.  I get so self absorbed sometime that It was until 10 years later that this dawned on me.

The last time I had big plans with Fred was around 2002.  I had bought a sweet fostex 8 track recorder.  I started redoing all my music on it and the quality was pretty good.  But now I was doing all the instruments and using drum pads to try and play drums.  If you dont play drums,  it hard to understand what drummers do and these recorders showed that.  I had all the plans set up with Fred to go to Athens and redo all our tracks and I was gonna mike his drums and all this stuff.   I had plans to do this over 2 weekends to start and had to do a ton or re-arranging schedules at work to make this happen.  I was hyped telling my boss that she is gonna hear some hot tracks when I get back.   I go to schedule a hotel in Athens and everything is booked up.  What I failed to realize was I had scheduled all this on a UGA football game so there wasnt going to be any hotels.   There was no way I could re-arrange the trip cause  the ways we rescheduled me at work.  I call Fred and tell him Im going to stay with him (which I thought was a easy done deal) and the first words I hear are “you cant stay at my place”  and I was like dude, WHAT we have all the plans.   So then we even discussed me sleeping at his moms garage since that was the practice space but I dont what happened here.  Fred turned to ICE on me and so I got a case of the ass and said fuck all this and cancelled all of.  The worst part about all this is I just finished up my latest album work LIKE A HOLIDAY and had 7-8 bad ass new songs ready for him.  Also this was the most hyped I had been about music in many years and was looking at rebooting me and fred.  To this day Im not sure why Fred didnt want to work with me over these weekends and when I think about it,  these were probably the last times I have ever spoken to him.  I know I left him ton of voice mails but I dunno.   My boss wasn’t happy when she found out I didnt even make the trip, after she had really did me a solid by rearranging my schedule to make this happen.   All this really sucks at this time period because I had a beach house and we could of practiced and set up shop there.  I guess after I moved, the logistics werent there anymore, IT JUST SUCKS.

Fred did start playing with a band called cookieman.  He sent me an article on the band and I recently re-read it in 2015 and one statement hit.    Something to effect he said,  a lot of bands I played with never get out the practice space and this band is already playing out.   That sort of sums up my feelings I stated in part 4,  did we ever have any intention to try and get on the road.   Of course thinking of this in 2017 and the reality of things in 1993, maybe Im looking thru rose colored glasses here.

I do know I have been actively searching for Freddy Dean.   I know in the mid 2000s I must of left him 20 voice mails and he never returned any of them.   Also people of our generations dont really put too much personal info on the internet so my searches for him have been very limited.   Who knows maybe in the future Ill hook back up with MY MAIN FREDDY DEAN,  DAMNIT SON I WISH WE WOULD HAVE JUST LEFT ATHENS AND TRIED.   JUST FUCKING TRIED.  but anyways, this will close the book on my years with Freddy Dean.

I will say I very much trust Freddie Dean even to the point that I tried to reconnect with people in Athens and also trying to get the both of us to join the band Scary Garcia.  At 47 Ill be mobile and told my man Lee Swindle (an Athens legend), that if he gets this shit set up, we can try this over the internet practicing and I can come up if we can get gigs. ALSO been trying my damndest to find Fred to to be apart of it (my latest attempt was this morning, some band in Athens tag him in a photo 4 years ago, so I reached out one of those band members to try to get Fred to contact me.   Id really love to get all my collection redone, but in 2017, I probably havent played guitar that often for the last 7 years.  BUT IF THE STARS EVER ALIGN AGAIN, IM SURE I CAN PICK UP THE CHOPS AGAIN.   But enough old man dreaming LOL.

Throughout the mid 90s thru the late 2000s I was still doing music.  In part 6,  I will discuss a band I played bass for in Charlotte and one of the coolest venues I ever played.  Then the move to Daytona.  Then the work of redoing the collection.  Then crashing into a total brick wall.  Then trying to revive myself playing for bass for bands in Orlando.  So get ready they ride is still going strong.





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