Musings on music, sports, life in general from Quincy, Illinois.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Beach Time!

Counting down the last few hours.

I'll update once in a while but not that much.

Don't try to find me. If it's really necessary, go to Holland and take a left and go about 10 miles down the beach.

Also doing the GR thing and working for Gus in Belding next weekend.

Great meeting last night at the R&L Center. Let's see if the ball keeps rolling.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

New Funions Videos

A big thanks to Shey Fey for this video, "Just Pretending," from a recent Turner Hall show.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Three More Days

Bit of a dark and stormy night in the Q-town ....

Great feedback from the Friday night show.

Did not attend the Hannibal flood thing. I do know there was misommunication about the sound stuff from the beginning.

Gotta get through Wednesday ... gotta get through Wednesday .... gotta get through Wednesday ....

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Slow Sunday

Thanks goodness for slow Sundays. Mental health is important too you know.

Huge fun hanging out at the 24th and Harrison hood last night. If the weather holds might have to see if the King will be in the pool this afternoon.

Yesterday I woke up twice to take naps and it was a beautiful thing.

Congrats to Wayne and Sherry! Wayne proposed at Sheridan last night at a cookout on the deck. Sherry is the MVP employee at the 18th and Broadway Sandwich Shop of Doom, she rocks! Maybe The Funions will play at the reception.

Four days until Dirk Junior's Most Excellent Michigan Beach/Belding Macker vacation begins. Vacation Brain is a terrible thing. Can't fight it much longer ....

Saturday, July 26, 2008

What a blast

Just when you think you can't possibly have any more fun, just when you think you can't play any better, just when you think you've played the perfect gig .... you play again.

Crazy good times last night in the Oakley-Lindsay Center parking lot to celebrate the flood relief effort. All the bands were on - St. Amy's, Raised on Radio, Fielder - and The Funions were ON FIRE.

Burt Shackelton blew everybody away with sax solos from the heavens and the depths, great keyboards too. Pat and Mark were right there with the timing and Chris keeps getting more and more confident on guitar.

We unleashed some new songs and got a huge response. My favorite was Walking On The Moon by the Police, that caught a lot of people by surprise.

There were 400 to 500 people there I think. Hard to see from the stage .... Jeff Stroot jumped up and sang La Grange with us, making up for some guitar problems (stupid wireless).

Pat Cornwell, our fearless drummer and owner of Vegas Music, did sound and this was one of the few shows where I think it wasn't too loud and we could all hear from the stage. Pat is working all day today in Hannibal so he's a trooper .... gotta give him some love.

Big thanks to Chicken Man and Rob Ebbing from the OLC.

Now it's time for a little R&R, some stuff coming up perhaps later in August and September.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Copy, Storms, etc.

Utterly fascinating story here about the trickle down effect from newspaper demise ....

Spectacular storms last night. I have a beleaguered potted plant on the landing which appreciated the rain, that's for sure.

Hope you can make it out Friday night to the Oakley Lindsay Center for the free flood beach bash. It starts at 8 with St. Amy's, The Funions, Raised On Radio and Fielder. Slide on down from Blues In The Park and check it out!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Steamy in C-Paign

Heard Bluesfest was good and the after-party at The Club was amazing. Dave Chastain was in town and blew people away during a jam session ... no surprise there, Dave is one of all-time great guitar players, a true Illinois and Midwest legend.

Working for Gus in Champaign was .... hot. Sticky. Sweaty. A lot of fun. Gus and I did Dream Court games Saturday and mostly just laughed at ourselves. Sunday I was on my own and the teams, parents, officials, organizers, Champaign Park District, everybody was great.

The CPD organizes the event around West End Park and it ranks up there with one of the most beautiful settings for a Macker.

Only one case of idiots getting out of control, and later I might post on the distinctly urban feel of the tournament, much like Springfield, which I think is a great thing.

Nine more days and then it's vacation time .... these are the toughest days of all, I think, except for the day after you get back.

And ... big bash at the OLC Friday night!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Hot hot hot

Steamy here in the Q-town ... I'm heading to Champaign to work for Gus. Have fun at Bluesfest, good luck especially to The Healers and Fielder. Albert Cummings, Saturday night's headliner, is amazing, so if you are in town make sure you catch him at Washington Park.

Catch The Blue Healers here from a recent Turner Hall performance

Excellent practice last night for the Funions. Lately the practices have turned into parties and there's nothing wrong with that. Last night we were more about working on songs and arrangements and we'll have five or six tunes to unleash at our July 25 flood party.

Be safe!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

St. Amy's

St. Amy's has been added to the July 25 show at the OLC parking lot to honor flood relief workers. Here's your chance to see three very talented young men.

I bought a new cell phone for my daughter and we've added texting. How do you punctuate using these dumb things?

Lots of good work going on near the back of Woodland Cemetery, in case you were wondering.

Lots of work going on at the Notre Dame High School baseball field. Looks like they've gone ahead and are planning to turn the field around so it faces north.

Downtown is ... dusty.

Albert Cummings returns to Quincy this weekend for Bluesfest. He was fantastic when he was here in 2004.

Unfortunately I have to work for Gus in Champaign. Well, not unfortunately ... Champaign will be cool because it's the first time for me and I've heard great things about it. But it's a bummer to miss the Bluesfest.

Ever get about two weeks away from going on vacation and just hit the wall?

Good. I'm not alone.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Dream Court Love

An interesting couple of days in Springfield working for Gus. We got hammered with a storm Saturday about 3:30 and halted play. The tournament organizers were worried but we weren't, not the first time Mother Nature has interfered, and we managed to get caught up today, games were done by 6:15 and we were on the road by 7.

Dream Court was a blast as usual. We had the Special Olympics guys and gals Saturday morning with Troy Boyer running the show and my favorite Gus Buster of all time, former professional wrestler Dave Conrad.

Today we brought a girls court over and finished up their bracket, then did the same for a boys bracket. It's amazing how well the parents behave when you stay positive and have Busters who blow the whistle. The Enforcer and The Duece did a great job, as did my scorekeeper extraordinaire, Panic.

Not to blow my own horn, but for Springfield Journal-Register coverage, click here and here.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Beach Flood Bash

We are playing Friday, July 25 at the Oakley-Lindsay Center parking lot in a free four-band show to celebrate flood relief efforts.

No sand, thank goodness.

Click here for more info.

Raised On Radio and Fielder are the other confirmed bands, with one more TBA.

We'll have more info on the order and other stuff.

Heading to Springfield tonight for Gus, be back Sunday night with a report.

Hope the weather holds for the Blue Healers tonight at Washington Park. Be safe!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Springfield, Gus, etc.

I'll never judge anybody just by appearance again.

Getting ready for Gus in Springfield this weekend. You can always count on it being 120 in the shade around the Horace Mann building.

We have the Special Olympics guys on Dream Court Saturday morning and it's a blast. The Greenville (Mich.) crew will be in the house and it's always fun working with those guys.

It does mean I have to bolt Friday afternoon so I'll only be able to catch a bit of the Blue Healers, which bums me out.

Getting closer to making an announcement about a huge show near the end of the month.

Funions practice tonight at Vegas Party Central. Ooops. I mean Vegas Music ....

Monday, July 07, 2008


Tell me there's anything better than getting blasted by the sun while sitting in the pool with a lemonade. Or two.

Well. Maybe if it was on a Lake Michigan beach.

Therapy on Kingsridge is a beautiful thing.

Thank goodness the Julie furnace got cranked up. What would summer be like around here without it?

Funions practice Thursday. Blue Healers in the park Friday night, and the first of a busy Macker stretch starts this weekend in Springfield.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

80s Pool

Massive fun at Rocky Pool Ooza Saturday night. Keith and I looked at my watch and said, "It's after midnight?" Loved the 80s theme and we even played a few of the songs Rocky burned on a CD and gave out.

This was a total social gathering and we were the background music, and that's OK. It's just good to play. A new Dobro got a workout and we didn't scare anybody away. Even had some nice backup vocals too! Very, very, very nice backup vocals .....

Tookie and bride used their heads so I give them credit for making smart choices. Thank you Brown Eyed Girl for taking care of them!

Yesterday afternoon I found myself with nothing to do for the first time in .... in .... I don't even remember. So I woke up to take three naps, watched golf on TV and just generally enjoyed being a slug. This is the last weekend until September that will happen.

So ... keep being safe!

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Rocky Pool Ozza

Getting ready tonight for Rocky Cola's big bash in the 24th and Payson Hood.

Great time last night with the Mays clan at Spring Lake. If you are playing No. 15 today and cut the corner too far left, you might want to ask about getting relief from ground under repair .... that is, burned ground under repair. Fireworks are too fun!

Please continue to have a safe and happy holiday weekend.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Upcoming Stuff

Tremendous practice again last night at Vegas Music. We learned seven, count 'em, SEVEN, new songs.

We have also formed a new dance troupe to perform during songs called The Funion Rings. You can't make it up ....

Big plans for a show later this month, stay tuned.

Even bigger plans for a potential Funions recording project with Jack's Pillar Productions studio. Gotta get writing ....

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Whatta Mess

I was in LaGrange, Mo., today. What a mess. It's going to take a long time but the one thing I've learned about those folks over there, they are a resilient bunch.

Funions practice tonight. Could have a major announcement concerning a show toward the end of July.

It will be nice to have a few days off for the July 4 holiday. Please be safe out there!