Early Morning Cry

Today was like an early morning cry kind of day. Like when you wake up and the first thing you do is cry. That used to be a routine for me. A habit almost. Realizing another day is to take place and the overwhelming and all encompassing strength it will take to get out of bed and get thru it all. So first a cry. I don’t do that much anymore.

pic credit: JLozier

It was like that today. It was a grey and gloomy day. It rained all day. I drove in that rain all day and listened to Billie Holiday . It was the right music to go with the mood. It almost made it like a soundtrack to a sad and dreary movie drama. I felt like I was in my own movie. A little bit of out of body experience today. I had to take some pictures as I drove.

I can’t help but get emotional when Billie sings. She embodied Heartbreak, every pore on her body oozed with heartbreak. She shared it with us in small doses of three, four and five minute songs. Just enough to always leave us wanting more.

Pic credit by google.

Here’s some of the songs that shattered me today.

“If the Moon turned green”

https://youtu.be/qqMMSY-VbXM

“You Better Go Now” was always one of my favorites.

https://r.be/wpB9nwhpv

“You’ve Changed”:

https://youtu.be/ir2eBab1KDE

Yeah it was a Billie Day. Gloomy Thursday. Everything I saw looked gloomy and with the back drop of Lady Day Singing everything was that much deeper.

Here is a picture of a Alter I took today in Paterson NJ. I call it ” Paterson Life” for obvious reasons. I was making up stories all day about this alter trying to fill in the blanks about why it was there and what young soul it was for. Very Sad ūüėĘ

pic credit : JLozier

Here is a picture I took today of a Red House with a graveyard peeping out the back. I wonder who lives there? Newark NJ

pic credit : JLozier

Here is a picture of a pair of birds on the waters edge, are they mates? I think so. Then a single black bird in flight while all his friends sit perched in the nearby tree filling in the bare branches. These two pictures were from Haverstraw, New York.

pic credit : JLozier

I’m not sure what the forecast calls for tomorrow but maybe the sun will be shining. One can hope but beauty and joy can be found in the gloomy days as well. There is beauty in the tears and heartbreak, in the solitude of lost souls that are no longer on this earth. In the naked cold wet earth and bare lines of nature before spring blooms. The beauty Is always all around us.

Love and Happiness

Jloz

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The Blues

‚ÄúBlues had the pulse beat of the people who keep on going.‚ÄĚ By Langston Hughes

Music is your own experience, your own thoughts, your wisdom. If you don’t live it, it won’t come out of your horn. They teach you there’s a boundary line to music. But, man, there’s no boundary line to art.- Charlie “Bird” ParkerI’m a bluesman moving through a blues-soaked America, a blues-soaked world, a planet where catastrophe and celebration- joy and pain sit side by side. The blues started off in some field, some plantation, in some mind, in some imagination, in some heart. The blues blew over to the next plantation, and then the next state. The blues went south to north, got electrified and even sanctified. The blues got mixed up with jazz and gospel and rock and roll. – Cornel West.

The blues are the roots and the other musics are the fruits. It’s better keeping the roots alive, because it means better fruits from now on. The blues are the roots of all American music. As long as American music survives, so will the blues.

Willie Dixon

Everything comes out in blues music: joy , pain , struggle . Blues is affirmation with absolute elegance.

Wynton Marsalis

My mother always told me, even if a song has been done a thousand times, you can still bring something of your own to it. I’d like to think I did that.

Etta James

Once you discover that you can, then you must. And it’s not easy. You have to take direct steps. You really have to count your blessings and you have to make a decided effort to not get seduced by the blues.

Al Jarreau

Like Water ‚Ä™…….

Sometimes you can’t even explain what you feel for a person. It‚Äôs like trying to explain what water tastes like , it‚Äôs impossible. –

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To be sure…I am a forest, and a night of dark trees: but he who is not afraid of my darkness, will find banks full of Roses under my Cypresses ” ~~~¬†Friedrich Nietzsche. ¬† ¬†

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Blame Nobody.

Expect Nothing.

Do Something .

“Sometimes it’s to your advantage for people to think you’re crazy” – Thelonious Monk

New Hope

So I took a impromptu day trip to New Hope today with a friend and that town is so beautiful, especially at night. I met some really great shop owners and people and had a great time. The Tye Dye store had this cool couple and two dogs. The woman owner is a Melissa McCarthy clone. Everything she said was funny. I loved her and ¬†their dogs. They are expanding ¬†and opening a second store in Asbury Park. They do all their Tye Dye product in house. I wish them the best of luck.. ¬†These dogs were tired from a hard days wotk. I took a few pictures ¬†while I was walking around there and a few on my on my way there as well so I will share them with you here ¬†There is something about that town that comes alive when dusk falls. ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†EE274845-6435-4397-A9E6-CF05A48E9498¬†This picture of the shop of India really spoke to me so I took a picture. I don’t know why things speak to me but when they do it’s very clear. I walked into the sweetest bookstore and I meant to take a picture of that too but I didn’t. I got distracted by this adorable card of Billie Holiday and it comes with cute stickers as well. So cute. I got one for a friend.

Zora Neale Hurston was there too.

New Hope It is a town for lovers.  Friends too but when your there you can’t help but long to be with the one you love, especially when the Sun starts to melt. Once I stayed there years ago and I stayed in a little inn called the Logan Inn. The cool thing about the Logan Inn is it is haunted. Ghosts! Yes. Very cool.  I stayed in a room that was haunted and a ghost lived there. I never did see her. Her name is Emily, room 6. Doesn’t mean she wasn’t there. I would stay there again. Maybe I’ll get lucky next time.

On the way there I saw this adorable Hot Dog Stand, Johnny’s. It was so 1950’s and it was next to a babbling brook. Really sweet. I had to stop and take a few shots. Sometimes you drive into a spot or a place and it takes you back in time. It can be anything like a shady bend with a wooden billboard or a little motel with a shady maple and vintage Sign saying the same. When that happens it’s the closest thing to time travel I know. I told my friend I had to stop and take a few pictures. I’m used to getting the eye roll or why? but I don’t care lol.

This friend was cool though. She didn’t mind, I saw a bunch of Barns with horses and could have stopped all day but we had to get to our destination. It’s hard for me to see horses and not stop. They are so beautiful. I am still waiting to see my wild mustangs. Wild Mustangs, we will ride them some day. As we were walking around I spotted my girl. I always have to take a picture of her when I see her cause she also speaks to me. Always has. Hey Girl! I Love Marilyn. ūüíč. I put her in my super star tragic hero category. People like her, Prince, Michael Jackson, James Dean, Elvis, the super stars. They die young. It’s too much for their hearts and minds, the burden of such extreme fame. And in the end it leaves us with the sorrowful residue of their greatness.

Time to sign off. There will be a New Hope 2 blog coming soon. Until then.

Love and Happiness,

Jeanne

A Night at Legends- Chicago Bound

So on my way driving to Minneapolis I stopped off in Chicago. It has been about 25 Years since I’ve been back. I was going to go the same place I went last time I was in Chicago. I was headed over to Buddy Guy’S Legends. One of the best blues bars in the world owned by Chicago’s very own Legend, Buddy Guy. He has always been a blues hero for me. I was hoping he would be there, it was ten days before Christmas so he could very well be there. Good news he was! The last time I went to Legends 25 years ago he was there as well. Just standing against the wall. I didn’t even notice him until he smiled and then I saw his gold BG ring and I realized who he was. There was a private CD release party going on and I kind of crashed it.

Any Way the first time I went I had no camera but I stayed at this Russian owned hotel called the spa motel. Very cheap, very clean. I got to Legends, different location but Buddy’s Bar and I got to Chicago B.L.U.E.S and saw Son seals. I went to Kingston Mines and saw Magic Slim and the teardrops. I also went over to the historic Maxwell Street to soak in some Blues history. Here’s some vintage pictures of Maxwell Street. When I was on Maxwell Street is was like a glorified swap meet and I it was very cold so there were a lot of garbage cans fires burning strong.¬†

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This time I didn’t have a lot of time but I made sure to spend a night at Legends. The staff was amazing, the wings were so good and the Buddy Guy Beer hit the spot after driving 500 miles. I saw three acts and then Buddy graced the stage with the Lindsey Alexander Band. It was super lucky to have met Buddy Guy and take this picture. I cannot express how much Joy I got from his music and performances.

http://www.buddyguy.com

The line up was:

LINSEY ALEXANDER w/ Dave Weld

Acoustic Set by Fruteland Jackson. I loved him. 

All the shows were so great. I wish I had got more pictures of the second act. I must have been talking. Met some great folks there that night. 

Here are some pictures of the night.

Damn Right I got the Blues!

 

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For those that don’t have Java I posted the pictures in two different ways.

“They say the blues is sad, but when B.B. sings ‘I got a sweet little angel, I love the way she spreads her wings,’ that don’t sound too sad to me!”

—¬†Buddy Guy

“I’ve never missed a gig yet. Music makes people happy, and that’s why I go on doing it – I like to see everybody smile.”

—¬†Buddy Guy

“Listen to the lyrics – we’re singing about everyday life: rich people trying to keep money, poor people tying to get it, and everyone having trouble with their husband or wife!”

—¬†Buddy Guy

Thanks for giving us the Blues Buddy and making us SMILE. We Love you!

Love and Happiness

Jloz

Roadtrippin’

So I woke up this morning and decided to take a job driving to Minneapolis. It was impulsive and risky.¬† These are two behaviors that unfortunately go hand in hand with living with Bipolar, Especially when your running out of your medication. It is a sad day that benefits in New Jersey are so hard to get when you need them. I worked my whole life working very hard and paying my own way. It is very frustrating that when you actually need help from your state and government because you lose a job that it is almost impossible to get the help you need. I don’t foresee it getting any better under the Trump Regime.¬†

Anyway I took the job having no idea how I would get back home. I didn’t plan it well but it worked out. Thanks to a really nice customer who worked for Heineken¬† I ended up getting a driving job back home. He was a true angel. My Trip could have been a great short film because there was lots of stuff happening and I will explain some of it. Some of it I will leave for the book. I love to drive so I thought driving might be a good job for short-term but it isn’t worth it because you have to pay for your own hotels and that makes it less than desirable and not enough money to risk your life severely increasing your driving time on the road. The more you drive; the higher chance you can die. Obvious fact.

My trip was filled with a lot of music on the radio, a stop off in Chicago to meet a true blues legend and some blues disciples, met a bunch of friends along the way, a couple of really nice state troopers, thank you! Some definite drama, cold and snowy weather and some really bizarre tollbooth messengers. I wrote some song/lyrics called Tollbooth Preacher one day and I wish I could find it. It’s in a box somewhere and I can’t remember the lyrics. I’ll find it or an i’ll re-write it. I remember the premise. Here are some pictures from my trip. I stopped off in Chicago and met one of my blues heroes Buddy Guy. I also met some other friends as well.¬† All the employees that worked at Buddy Guy’s Legends was so friendly; From the awesome bartender to the cool lady bathroom attendant in the bathroom. Thanks for the deodorant. ūüôā Also met some really fun fellow blues fans and of course more guitar players. Here are some pictures of my trip. I will follow-up with a Night at Legends post with all my photos.

New Day. New moments. New Adventures. New Hope. Some Moments from my crazy trip.. 

 

 1.. Selfie In the car. Fake makeup app. Bored, more waiting.

2. Killing time at Manna Hamburgers Hackensack New Jersey waiting on my car getting detailed. Always wanted to go inside because of my obsession with Vintage Buildings, diners, signs and Businesses. 

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manna3. Taco Truck In Drums, Pennsylvania . Stopping off to get my money from the trucking center. They pay 80 percent up front. Trucking centers always fascinated¬†me; a whole culture going on there; if you ever need a shower on the go that’s the place to do it.¬†

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4. Me meeting my Blue’s Hero. Good timing. Good Luck. Thanks for the music and the inspiration Buddy.¬†

buddy guy

5. The Buddy Guy Legends sign…so happy to see it. http://www.buddyguy.com¬†I haven’t been back to legends since the 1990’s. It was in a different building back then. I met buddy back then as well, I was 26 years old. I even went to Maxwell Street on the south side back then but it was before camera phones and I didn’t have a camera with me so no pictures, sadly. Rough street but a blues history Gem. I wish I had pictures to share of Maxwell Street but they are only in my mind. Lots of Garbage Can fires burnin’ it was cold. The Hawk was out.¬†

legends sign

6.  So I’m sitting in a McDonald’s in Winnebago County, Illinois drinking coffee watching Fonzi, Captain Kirk, George foreman , Terry Bradshaw trying on lederhosen. I am not sure if it’s a new low or a new high!

jeanne at mcdonalds

¬†7. Traffic. That’s why I sat still for so long.¬†

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I stopped taking pictures after a while because stress took over but I finished driving to Minneapolis, then I turned around and drove back home. Had to get the new car detailed and fixed up so stopped in Rockford Illinois. Saw some messy ice and snow, met a chatty meth head at Starbucks… god bless him and while checking into a ahem..budget motel, I call them shake & bakes,¬† I got propositioned by a creepy hotel owner tweaking¬†on something ..yuk. So 2500 miles later I am back home.¬† Shout out¬†to the folks that helped me along the way and kept me safe. You know who you are. Peace!¬†

Love and Happiness,

Jloz

ROOM 203

 

Mark Twain Hotel, 345 Taylor St. Jan. 22, 1949

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This story is the reason I think there is a connection, a destiny, and maybe an existentialist thread from the moment were born to the moment we die. It’s not a big¬†story but it is¬†big story to me and I’ll tell you why. It proves a point, about destiny and how just maybe our¬†subconscious and our dreams ¬†know what we are to become even before we understand it ourselves.

When I was eleven I went on a plane for the first time. It was a pretty big deal. My parents and me were going to California. I remember the trip and some of the stuff we did. It was a big deal because¬†we always went to the jersey shore for a week if we could afford it but this was big for my parents. This trip was the trip of a lifetime for my them at the time. We did all the typical tourist stuff that tourists do. We went to a wax museum and Universal Studios. We saw Alcatraz. We visited my parents friends in San Francisco and they took me on a canoe ride right under the golden gate bridge. That was beautiful. We went to China Town in San Francisco and we drove down that famous windy road. We rode cable cars and we drove on that scary and breathtaking¬†Pacific Coast Highway¬†. We saw the Big Redwoods.¬† We even went to Carmel, Clint Eastwood Territory. I remember there was a store there that was just for lefties. Everything in the store was for a southpaw.. I’m a¬†lefty¬†I thought that was cool. I remember we couldn’t find a hotel one night and we thought we would have to sleep in the car. Back then we didn’t have computers and or phones to help us know what to do and my parents were not savvy travelers because¬†they never really traveled.¬†It was a great¬†trip but I was eleven and not very present¬†but I had as much fun as I could at the time.¬†¬†¬†I remember we were staying in a hotel in San Francisco ¬†and we were walking to a restaurant and I guess we were right on the edge of the red light district because there were prostitutes everywhere. I¬†really liked¬†the restaurant because it ¬†had a salad bar and an ice cream bar and a live band and I never saw anything like that before. I mean give an eleven year old unlimited ice cream and well yeah..that’s cool. .My parents knew how much I liked that restaurant so we went back the second night¬†and again we walked past the prostitutes .¬† .. each time feeling a bit out-of-place but I liked it. My Parents not so much. ¬†I was always attracted to¬† Gritty ..even as a young kid. I didn’t like that the girls were prostitutes but I liked the feeling in the air, there was life going on, different from the boring suburbs. There was an energy¬† I felt that my soul was attracted too instantly. I always felt¬†like a prisoner in the suburbs. It was depressing for me. ¬†I used to walk along 42nd street a lot when¬†I was 16 or 17 and I thought it was cool. I would hang out in the village but I would walk down 42nd street¬†to get back to the port authority. ¬†Pimps always thought I was a run-a-way and I would tell them..no I’m just from Jersey.¬† ūüôā¬† Ha Ha. ¬†I will never forget Gypsy the pimp. He was dressed in all red leather, it was the eighties, Eddie Murphy¬†was popular. He had a red leather cowboy hat to match and a lot of gold chains. His chest was showing thru his red leather jacket ¬†Gypsy The Pimp, I never forgot him. ¬†I met up with twice; not on purpose of course. He had a great memory because he remembered me. I of course remembered him.¬† He would walk me to the port authority and he would ask me questions along the way and he was very polite and very likable..and¬†in there lies the problem. He wasn’t dumb. God bless his next victim. Both times when I got to the port Authority Gypsy would say Au Voir my little friend, and them he would yell. Your too pretty to be from New Jersey and would flash that big smile.

I used to think about how smart and charismatic Gypsy was and what might he had become if he had been allowed to be something else.

So Anyway, back to San Francisco.

The name of the hotel we were staying at was The Mark Twain Hotel.¬† Now this is the part of the story that freaks me out. I never understood why but I loved that hotel. I mean I really loved it. When we got there we walked into the lobby and the bell hop was super friendly and bent down and gave me a sticker, like an oval one you see on everyone’s cars now a days with initials on them. The sticker was brown and it read the Mark Twain Hotel and it had a clipper boat on it. I loved getting that sticker and the bell man was very nice too me. First Impressions and all. ¬†I really liked the lobby, it was kind of dark, lots of Mahogany I think and it had a feeling ..old ..like stuff happened there…you know like history. I just felt it and I liked it. It was instinctual.

We went up to the room and it was really small. I remember reading that some of those rooms were really small because back in the day they were ¬†made small for the maid or butler quarters. ….for the help that traveled with their uh ..employers or masters…ok I said it….You know rich people would bring their help and the small rooms were for them. So anyway the room was really small. I think I slept on a cot. The bathroom was so small and it had one of those old-fashioned sinks and the bathtub had feet. The walls were covered with small square tiles. I loved everything about that room. My parents weren’t thrilled but I was loving it. Ok so here we are in a really¬†old hotel near the red light district and I was happy and didn’t want to leave. Now I don’t know why I loved that hotel so much, I do like vintage old stuff and¬†was attracted to that even as a young kid. There was something else though….Something I felt about it….I felt that history,¬†I mean it is called the Mark Twain Hotel. The literary¬†history was dripping in the air. The only time I felt that again was when I stayed at the Paramount in New Orleans…when I was there so was AL Gore at the time and you know the story was that historically a ton of politicians would¬† stay there and wheel and deal. The bar tender told me the Blue Room, bar at the Paramount , was famous for shifty wheelin’ and dealin’¬†going on over a stiff drink…it had that same feel. I believe you can feel stuff ¬†in the air and the way it moves around you ; like a kinetic science of some sort.

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What’s weird though is what happened after. Years went by and I grew up and I never forgot about the Mark Twain hotel. I would think about it all the time. I made a scrap-book out of some pictures I took there at the hotel and I had that sticker that the bell hop gave me in my scrapbook. I couldn’t forget it. The memories were so vivid to me. I even knew what room we stayed because I wrote it in my scrapbook. Room 203.

I recently checked back into the website to see what was going on with the hotel and it was sold. It is now called the Tilden Hotel. Bummer, that must be recent because I looked at it last year and the website still said The Mark Twain Hotel. So in my twenties¬†is when I discovered Billie Holiday and I of course loved her… I was reading some stuff on a website about Billie recently and then I came across something about the Mark Twain Hotel and I started to feel the hairs on the back of my neck stand up….I got a tingle feeling. ¬†On January 22, 1949 Billie was arrested when a raid occurred by federal Narcotic agents at the Mark Twain Hotel. They raided her room for a very small amount of opium and a pipe that they found in her room. This was an ongoing witch hunt from the FBI on Billie. They would try to do anything to destroy her and I believe in the end..they finally did. They eventually took away her NYC¬†Cabaret card preventing her to work or perform anywhere that sold alcohol.

Billie was heartbreak, Billie was beautiful. Billie deserved better.

She wasn’t the only one in the arts that the feds were to crucify but it was a damn shame. So after reading that article I thought to myself was that the reason?¬† Was that the history I felt. Every hair was standing up on my arms and neck ¬†when I looked at what room¬†Billie got¬†arrested in. I¬†realized it was the same room we stayed in. Unbelievable …it was Room 203!¬† Here comes the existential thread. The DE-JA-VU. The come full circle of it all. Is this the reason I loved this hotel so much. Did my sub conscious somehow know that Billie was in this very room. Years later I am inspired by her in a way that is mind-blowing for me and as an eleven year old, did my body, my mind , my spirit already know I was¬†connected to something ¬†in room 203? ¬†Something kinetic again, energy is the motion of waves, electrons, atoms, molecules, substances, and objects right, so it was about the way the air felt or moved or somehow my sub-conscience knew that¬†something happened there. Ever since¬†I was 20 ¬†I wanted to sing the blues like Billie.¬†I adore her.

This is why I think our bodies and spirits and antennae that is our living human body is much more insightful than we might want to¬†admit. Do¬†our bodies know our destiny when we are small?¬†¬†Is our destiny in our blood plasma. Is our destiny in out flesh. Is our destiny in our hearts. Is our destiny in the 65 percent water that makes up most of who we are.¬† All I know it something¬†about that hotel attached to¬†me¬†just like Billie’s¬†songs of heartbreak attached to me and never let go. I thought about it often and never knew why. Maybe this is why. If not and¬†I am wrong and it’s just a coincidence then so be it but it makes a story non the less. I knew I loved to sing when I was eleven but¬†I didn’t know consciously that¬†I would be on a stage doing it. I never thought that would be an option for me.

Now there is a plaque that lies near the entrance of the room. The Billie Room. I didn’t know who Billie was in 1977.¬† I don’t know if the plaque was there in 1977 ¬†but¬†I was there and I never forgot.

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The pictures above are mostly more current pictures of the hotel. I have some of my pictures and one of my dad in front of the hotel right here. This is what the hotel looked like in 1977.