the pain of it all…

Ow.

My body hurts all over the place right now. I have bruised, cut, scraped myself; just about any other injury you can think of I have. This was the opening weekend for the show at the park and I was there for all three days.

My shoulder is very sore right now because I had to run from my position to try and quickly retrieve a microphone for the emcee. On my way to the microphone, I nicked the stairs on my shoulder pretty hard and it hurt! Right as I was approaching my problem, I saw my foreman taking it out to the emcee and thus I wasn’t even a solution to the problem I created. If only I had remembered to set the microphone in its place right before the show started, I wouldn’t be feeling so bad right now! And so, for the rest of the evening, I was constantly reminded not to forget that set again. It was quickly annoying but I understand why she was being that way.

I am happy to report that I will hopefully be back in Houston next Wednesday. I will be able to spend a week there working a little, playing a little, going out with as many local friends as possible, and eating way too much Tex Mex and Blue Bell. I am SO very much looking forward to that trip because it’s going to be a long while before I can get to Houston again after this.

This will be a short week for me in terms of work because I’m off ALL WEEKEND! Yay for me. I will finally be able to commit some time to some web design projects that I keep putting off. Once they are completely finished, I plan on using this in my portfolio to pitch to more people for work. I think designing could be an excellent way to supplement my unforgiving low income I make right now. In the meantime, I’ll be enjoying my internship and possibly looking at getting into some acting if possible.

Speaking of which, I was in a better position of doing some walk-ons for TV shows when I got here than I am in now. So it’s highly unlikely at the moment that this will happen. Hopefully, however, I will meet some nice people who will like what I have to offer and take me on. I don’t consider acting to be a career for me at this point, but I am very interested to try it and see if it can take me anywhere.

It’s difficult to hold such high expectations for establishing myself out here and try to get settled at the same time. I am not where I thought I would be by now in my life, especially since I am college educated, and struggling for money doesn’t help. But, as I think about it, I’m happy to be here. I am starting to learn where I could possibly be in a few years with my internship now and the possibilities look very decent. As much as I sometimes think about it, I can’t give up yet. I am determined to move on and get where I want to go. And I’ll keep you updated on my whereabouts when I can.

such a geek

It runs in the family. I was destined to become one. Thus, according to this test, I am 20.9073% geek.

That a low score for a geek and I’m sure I know many people who could score higher than me. Actually, I’m positive I know a few people who could.

LA club night scene

Supposedly, I went to a club called The Ivar tonight. Although, looking at the gallery photos online, I really don’t recognize any of those photos relating them to where I was. I guess I’ll have to go back and see if I can find another name of the club I went to.

The reason I went to a club was to support a co-worker/friend who was premiering his CD to everyone at the club. Unfortunately for me, I only saw the second of the two of his videos. But, I enjoyed what I saw. It looked like a very well made video/song and has much potential. The tune was pretty catchy as well.

Because I’m practically a clubber virgin, tonight probably could have been a better experience. First, I was all by myself. I tried to call many people to see if I could find someone to take with me. Well, after an unsuccessful try, I decided to just forget about it and go. I had nothing to lose (except money) by going.

I decided to stay for a couple of hours, enjoyed a drink, and stayed long enough to see a couple of movie stars. First was Mario Van Peebles. He is your typical “going to a club, hitting on a girl, taking my shirt off while dancing, drinking, partying” kind of guy. And he’s in his 40s! The other star, ironically, was Keenan Ivory Wayans. This guy is a cool cat. Very laid back and calm. The ironic part is I’m working on his movie White Chicks at my internship. So, obviously, I decided to greet him and tell him. He thanked me for all the hard work we’re putting into the soundtrack. I called Immortal and left a message on their voice mail so I’m sure I’ll probably hear something by next time I go back.

This is now two clubs in one week that I’ve been to. I am not going to be able to afford this kind of life unless I get a better job soon.

update

FINALLY A DAY TO MYSELF!!

I made a few changes, added a few pages, added a few links. I will continue to add more pages and links hopefully tomorrow.

Please take a look at this page. I need feedback on if you like this kind of slideshow or not. I really enjoy it and want to use it with all my photos, but if I get an overwhelming response from other people, I won’t use it. It needs some CSS changes but I haven’t had time to mess with that yet. Soon though.

To scroll through the gallery photos, just click on the photos themselves. They each lead to the next photo.

This slideshow is from my Boston/NYC trip that I took with my childhood friend Justin back in November of 2003. It was a great trip and we got to see a LOT of great places that I hadn’t seen before. I hope you enjoy it and I would love to get some feedback.

music reformations

I had an interesting conversation with the Music Supervisor Lisa at the end of work yesterday. I had just finished my work for the day and logged my activities by submitting an e-mail to the department co-workers who work there. In fact, there are only three girls who work in the department so I only send it to three people and include the intern e-mail as well.

After stating my completed tasks for the day, I usually make a little social commentary at the bottom of the e-mail relating to one of the day’s activities. This last time I typed “Why do rich music artists demand so much money for their music to be in movies? The exposure should be compensation enough.” That comment caught the eye of Lisa.

Right as I got up to put something away, Lisa paged my phone and asked me to pick up the receiver. She’s been super busy the past two weeks trying to get all the music found and cleared by the record labels for every scene of the movie which should have finalized with the music by Friday.

She found my comment humorous and explained that these artists don’t even really need the exposure because they’re already famous enough. Yeah, I agree with that. Remember the movie Forrest Gump? One of the main reasons that movie was so popular was because of its soundtrack, and most of those songs didn’t even need the extra exposure to be recognized.

I told her I realized that these artists were famous and that a movie would barely increase exposure. We’re talking about the chart hitting artists on the Billboard top 100 singles. I explained that I really didn’t agree with how artists can charge that much because I realize how the recording industry rips them off anyway. She responded with an interesting comment. The reason that artists really are able to get away by charging thousands upon thousands of dollars for their songs to be in movies is because people like the Recording Industry Association of America really don’t have as much control. Yes, they still get the money like they would anyway, but it’s a little different licensing than it would be to just use a song for an album.

If there’s one thing that I could do for this industry, specifically the music industry, it would be to bring reforms to the structure of business. I have in the past few years bought much less CDs than I would have. Why? Partly because I really don’t want to spend the money; I’m poor. But I also try to keep in mind that people such as the RIAA are in it for themselves. They aren’t really here for the artists sake. They’re in it for the buck. It’s always about the money and I don’t care what kind of statistics they try to show me or you. It’s all baloney because they’re losing money and they don’t like it.

I have bought a few CDs on a few special occasions like Christmas. I have my reasons. But now that I’m much more aware of where money goes, I’d rather give the artist money for his work than giving Sam Goody $18 for a CD. $18 for a CD is a complete rip-off. Even $10 for a CD is a rip-off. If I absolutely knew that $10 was going directly to the artist rather than some corporate pig who in turn gives about $.08 per song per CD to the artist, I’d be much less hesitant to buy CDs.

I really hope consumers are made aware quickly because changes need to be made now. Boycotts are a great way to start the wave.

Boycott the RIAA today!
Avoid buying RIAA CDs!

i didn’t know

I had an unexpected 13 hours of work yesterday. Work called me on my day off to ask if I could help out with shuttling. I figured it would be an 8 hour work day, but turned out I was there until 2:30am. Normally, I wouldn’t mind such a long day because that’s overtime and double time for pay! However, this morning I had to be back at work at 7:30am. There was no way for me to extend my sleeping time.

Getting very little sleep isn’t too bad; that was half of college. Getting very little sleep after a full day of labor, mindless driving, etc. wore me down! Yet, here I am again updating my website. I am forcing myself to stay up to watch the season finale of SNL. I am going to sleep well tonight!

There was a country concert sponsored by the local radio station KZLA for their spring thing. I didn’t know any of the bands, but once I heard Phil Vassar took stage, I realized that I knew a couple of his songs! Now after having searched online, I realized he penned a few of my favorite country songs by Jo Dee Messina!

I was on my lunch break putting food on my plate at the time when I first met Phil. However, my ignorance, I didn’t know it was Phil being that I’d never actually heard of him. He was wearing an Texas Aggie shirt, didn’t think too much of it, but was looking at him when he noticed and went to shook my hand. I asked him if he was from Texas and he said it was a buddy of his who attended Texas A&M. He told me he was from Virginia and I sorta blew him off after that. I am so oblivious…

internship pitfalls

I’ve been working for my internship for only 2 weeks now. As anybody could, I have a few complaints. Maybe I’ll be able to solve these soon but they do stink.

1) I have to pay parking meter every 2 hours or I get a ticket. I’ve already received 2 tickets in the past 2 weeks, and this really blows because they’re $35 each. I think my best shot at dismissing them is to show up at the traffic control center or wherever they handle this mess and act Texan. “Dur, I’m not from around here, officer. Y’all haven’t marked the street well for me and I’m fixing to have to pay how much?” You know, that kind of jargon.

2) I love listening to music but I get burnt out on listening to so much music in one day. This really isn’t much of a complaint because day to day is usually completely different.

3) The drive is 25 miles. However, in LA, you don’t measure places by distance but rather by the time it takes to drive there. How long does it take? An hour each way. Yes, I’m driving on the infamous Interstate 405 and it’s infamous horrible traffic. It’s not a huge annoyance yet because I’ve only been driving it for 2 weeks, but I can tell it’s going to get old quick.

4) Will I be able to financially support myself with a really low paying job that I won’t work more than 20 hours a week if even that? It’s highly possible that I won’t.

I’m sure there’s more but again, I haven’t been working here that long yet. Now, so that I don’t end this on a bad note, the good things about this internship are:

1) I’m working in the entertainment industry and it’s a huge foot in the door.
2) The people I work with rock.
3) I’m only working 8 hours a day with an hour break and this summer will be less, but it’s all enjoyable work.
4) I get to hear new artists before they become public.

And it’s the beginning of a great career hopefully. This job is going to be fun as long as financially I can pay the meter on time, not get anymore tickets, etc. Let’s hope for the best.

Notes for me

Stuart Mathis

Los Angeles based musician, toured with Jewel and Lifehouse, will tour with Five for Fighting.

Memorable tracks:
1) Top of the World – Fun upbeat song and memorable tune
2) Down on my Knee – Harmonious, great song
15) Moon River – very cool arrangement of a popular song made famous by Breakfast at Tiffany’s

so tired…

This summer is going to kick my butt! Why? I’m finally going to be tested to some limits which I’ve never been tested before. I’m going to be waking up early almost everyday this month with few breaks. This summer is going to be testing my limits financially and physically because of my financial situation. It’s going to be a heck of a ride!

My internship is going great, but I understand how tedious it will be at times. Today for about 7 hours straight, I was listening to music. Non stop. I had to dig into a bin full of unopened CDs and listen to just about every track on the CD to have an idea of what’s out there. Seriously, it wore me down. I was so tired of listening to so many different selections. However, on a positive note, I learned about a bunch of new groups out there and some really cool new songs. I guess the standout for all the songs I listened to was the brand new Ryan Adams CD. My favorite track? His remake of “Wonderwall”. I don’t know why but it was really cool. Not that it was that different from the original by Oasis but it was a nice arrangement. Somewhat reminiscent of Gary Jules’ remake of “Mad World” by Tears for Fears that was featured on the film Donnie Darko.

Since I will be working with music on a regular basis now, I think I’ll share more thoughts on some good tunes for others to listen to. However, I’ll also do this to remind myself because I tend to forget really easily.

Since moving here to my new pad, I am able to watch TV a lot more. I’m now aware of this Iraq situation with the prisoners. As disturbing as it is to find out what’s going on, I’m not really surprised.

I have a few friends who have been through the Army and Navy. I’ve heard only a few stories of uniformity and obedience to their superiors. If you aren’t an officer and you are told to do something, you do it. That’s just the way it is as I understand it.

With this said, I believe that Americans will learn more responsibility of these acts should be held accountable to the leaders of these military groups. As Lt. Gen. Lance Smith stated, the mistreatment resulted from a

failure of leadership from the brigade commander on down, a lack of discipline, no training whatsoever and no supervision.

Yet, I think it’s more than that and I have wonders about how high up this punishment should really affect. The sad thing is that there are leaders who are only there to be butt kissed and probably won’t be caught.

confessions

There is a reason my website has been rather inactive for the past month. Since I flew back from Houston in April, I’ve had to deal with way too much for my own good. My home life became very unsettling and it blew up a week and a half ago.

On that day, my roommate approached me to let me know I had 4 weeks to find another place to live. I was expecting it because he and I were just not getting along at all. I wasn’t very social with him and being in that house was such a downer. Most of the time that I was there this past month, we would both be on our computers and rarely strike up a conversation. It’s difficult to live with someone when you rarely talk to them.

So that I don’t start more rumors, the situation became serious and life threatening. Thus, I began moving this past Thursday and finished on Friday. I am now in a house about 10 minutes from where I was and it’s a MUCH better environment for me. I live with three other guys, one of which I still haven’t met. However, the other two are very nice and it’s peaceful and I can actually see the sun from inside the house. If I go outside at night, I can see all the lights from the San Fernando Valley. It’s a gorgeous view especially for me since I love looking at lights.

Now I will use this weekend to resettle my belongings into this new house. Unfortunately for me, this is a temporary place and I’ll have to move by the end of summer, but it is still much better than my last place.

Next week begins my busy summer. I will be working 6 days in a row for almost the rest of the summer with either my internship or job so I’ll spend less time on this and more time trying to get myself somewhere. I still have hopes to get some of my photos on here but I never can find the right software to make that happen. As well, there are other things I hope to do but we’ll see how that all works out.