July 25, 2005

The GKB played its annual summer show in downtown San Jose at the “Music In The Park” concert series on July 21. My son’s band K2 opened the show, followed by Aja-Vu (a Steely Dan Tribute band that’s scary good), then the GKB. I got there early to watch every note of the K2 set and let me tell you, they were great! Ry played his new Gibson Les Paul (a beautiful black one) and it gave the guitar parts a hefty lift. He didn’t use it during his stint with the GKB later that evening, so I am assuming that the Les Paul is a “K2 only” guitar. It doesn’t matter of course, that boy could play a $29 Ukulele and make it sound good. Their set was all originals with a rousing version of Jimi Hendrix’ Fire to close the show. Several songs in particular stood out: Kiss It, Science Fiction, and Neighborhood Bully. It was the best first gig I ever saw. Expect Ry to be playing around the Bay Area with his new band very soon.

My literary agent Lori Perkins still hasn’t found a home for Rubber Soul (my new Beatles novel set in the 60’s). I sure hope it gets published soon. It’s bad luck to start your next novel when the one you just finished isn’t published yet. Of course, I already have. I’m either going to finish the novel I was working on before Rubber Soul, or continue to work on a brand new one. The novel before Rubber Soul is called The Memory Maker. The new one I just started is tentatively titled Buddy Holly And The Headless Chicken. And still I write. Radio syndication is just around the corner (a matter of weeks, I think) and I’m excited as hell. I am blessed to bring Chris Jackson (my producer for the morning show) and Laurie Roberts (program director at KFOX) into the fold. Now the same team that brings you my morning show will be directly involved generating a new show for syndication. It’s the only way this thing was gonna happen. If I’m going to be successful, then I want these guys to share in it. If it tanks, well, that’s life. Look for the new show Big Rock Beat, to start running right here on this website soon.

Julie DeMaria and Cookie Crissman at Operation Care And Comfort (The American Red Cross) tell me that they are close to realizing the $20,000 I didn’t win on Hit Me Baby One More Time. The last time I checked, we were around $16,500. So, it looks encouraging that we’ll raise the money anyway. They’ve been collecting at gigs and the fans are responding, eager to show their patriotism. I’ve often said, it doesn’t matter whether you’re for the war or not, there are young Americans out there in harm’s way. They need our support. At the San Jose gig, the Red Cross presented me with an Award Of Appreciation for supporting the troops. I want to thank the fans, for it is truly their support that makes the whole thing work. I’m just the middleman. God bless you guys.
And finally, this. I found an Atlas of WWII in the remainders bin at the local Borders. The book has many actual battle maps. There, in one of the maps dated Battle Of The Bulge Dec.24-26, 1945, I found my father’s unit, the 289th Army Infantry. My dad was wounded in battle on Dec 26, 1945, the day after Christmas. There, on the map, you can see that on Dec.24-26, the 289th Infantry was completely surrounded by Germans. There were tanks and heavy armor on three sides, and a German SS Division directly behind, blocking any retreat back to Bastogne. It was bitter cold snowing constantly. I found a picture on the Internet of the 289th walking up a snow-covered road on Dec. 24, two days before dad was shot. It’s hard to imagine my father among those men trudging through the snow, but he was. I think I’m going to have that map framed. One of my father’s favorite expressions was, “A man’s gotta do, what a man’s gotta do.” It’s as true today as it was in 1945.
Life goes on.

-Greg Kihn
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