Sunday, August 25, 2013

Your Suffering Is Over, My Friend

Just a little over 90 minutes ago I lost a dear friend of mine, Markus Strobl, to esophogeal cancer. As much as this hurts and as much as I am crying so many tears right now, I have to admit, this is what I have been praying for the past few days.

Markus and I met at the post office when I was still working there as the window clerk many years ago and slowly over those years, we each got to know the other one better and after working together on the Summer Concert Series closely we became very good and close friends.

Even thru all his pain and suffering in recent weeks, that famous Markus Strobl smile stayed ever present, and I can't imagine how hard it had to have been for him to do that at times.

If everyone could have the attitude, temperment and sense of humor that Markus possessed, the world would be a much kinder and peaceful place.

Markus wasn't afraid of hard work, he wasn't afraid to volunteer and he wasn't afraid to lead. And thru it all, right up until a few weeks ago, he was ready to do more than his fair share.

My life is richer for having known him and for having him as a friend. I will miss him beyond words and look forward to the day that my friend and I can sit and talk and laugh together once again.

As of yet, I can't accept the fact that in this life, however, I'm never going to be able to do any of those things with him again.

The last time I saw him was as he was leaving one of our concerts a few weeks ago with his loving and caring girlfriend Pam. Tired as he was, walking to his car with his cane and Pam supporting his tiring body, he put his arms around me and held me and told me he loved me, and of course, in return, I told him the same.

I wish I had known then that it would be the last time I saw him alive.

I would have told him so much more, I am sure.

Life is too short, my Faithful Few. Let those around you and those that are in your life know how you feel about them, and make sure you TELL them and SHOW them.

You never know when that last chance will pass and you won't get the chance to again.

Rest In Peace, Markus Strobl. I love you and will miss you beyond description.

Until our reunion down the road, however long that may be...

Saturday, August 17, 2013

By Request From Dominic

My friend Dominic sent me a personal message and asked me to post something by Grady Champion so he could enjoy some really good and cool ya go, pal, enjoy!

What A Glorious Evening Of REAL Music

A few years ago, my good friend John and I had the pleasure of going to the world famous Slippery Noodle Inn in Indianapolis and seeing the Grady Champion Revue. I walked out of there that night humbled by this amazing young man and his band and the awesome job they did that night. Grady is a tremendous entertainer and one of the best harmonica players I have ever seen perform. Since that time, I have bragged him up and down and have told many who would listen, just how talented this young man truly is. I only wished I could have shared that evening with others.

In this day of everyone and their brother thinking they have musical talent and playing the bar and club scene, it's so cool when you run across someone who truly does possess a one of a kind talent and who truly deserves the accolades they receive.

Luckily, this past Thursday evening, once again Grady and his band were back at the Slippery Noodle and myself, John, two wonderful friends, Dana and Tracy and my darling bride of 35 1/2 years got to see him and I got to share this special evening with my wife and my friends.

His performance exceeded my expectations, as he now not only sings and plays his harmonica, but he has also started playing the guitar on a lot of his music. To say he delivered a fantastic 4 hour set would be a gross understatement!

As luck would have it, we arrived at the Noodle early enough that we ran into him before his set started and he took the time to visit with us for about 15 minutes. Visiting with him on his breaks also added to the evening's fun.

This was his last show on the road for a short break and he told us they had been travelling for the past six weeks or so and they were all looking forward to heading home for a short break.

I'm already anticipating the next time he's at the Noodle because I can assure you, we will once again be going and I hope even more of our friends can join us for an incredible evening of live blues.

Grady is indeed a class act and the real deal!

Thursday, August 08, 2013

The Gift Of Second Sight

First, he saw them
Just out of his field of vision.
Slowly, after a time,
They started entering
From the left,
Allowing themselves to be seen.
A little at first,
But then,
They made their presence known.
And then,
The voices began speaking...