ENTRY #121
YouTube and Feedback links added 12.21.07
3:33 PM, Saturday, April 28th, 2001:
The moment you're older than your father was when he had you, is indeed a moment. Your perspective shifts. Assuming you haven't had children when this happens, it's a true moment of feeling like an adult. Damn that means my brother won't feel that way until he's 39. HAHAHA. Anyway, I don't remember hearing anyone speak of this. I could assume that it's just me, but then how fun would that be?
My relationship with my father was "different" from the beginning. My parents were divorced when I was 7 and prior to that my memories of him were few and far between. He was on the road quite a bit near the end of his marriage to my mom and came OFF the road right as they split. He was my dad, but not in the way most people see their dads at 7 years old.
My big memories came in the next 5 years as the time I spent with him were always fun. Welcome to divorce world. The "one-minute father" gets to be the cool guy while mom has to be the wicked witch. It's funny now, but quite difficult for my mom at the time - as I would come home from weekends with my dad and be quite the little prick. Going to school and doing homework just couldn't compete with seeing movies and eating fast-food.
When I hit my teens I started singing and writing songs. I had written instrumentals for many years, but now I was writing "pop" songs. Oddly enough, I didn't sing in front of my dad until I was 15. Even then I videotaped it and left it for him to see after I had gone to bed.
I set up this strange paradox where all I had to do was fall asleep and my dad would hear me sing. If I stayed awake I wanted to go get the tape and hide it. The following morning my dad didn't say a word. LOL. He was so busy in his morning ritual (don't fuck with this man's schedule), that he didn't even think of it. I finally went up to him asking about the tape. "Oh, you can sing..." as if he never doubted it. That lead to recording with my dad later that year and eventually doing my first tape and cd projects with him.
Recording with my dad started as a huge thrill, being I was participating in the career I saw him in my whole life. It was a common bond that really made us close. By the time I was a senior in highschool we had made enough songs (all in spare time) to put together my first cassette right as he was doing his first...
Yeah, laugh all you want. But there's only
52 copies in the world, and someday...

As I entered college we added a few songs, took a few off and made much better copies on much better tape and released "Tomorrow"
Yeah, laugh all you want. But there's only
100 copies in the world, and someday...
During this time we started butting heads for the first time. The bottom line is my father didn't trust my musical instincts. I'd want to build the drums one way, and he would say it wasn't done that way. Needless to say it got ugly a few times. I actually tried recording that song (Stronger Than Before) at someone else's studio with absolutely atrocious results. So bad that it's actually a common joke now between us. God I wish I could find that tape.
In 1995 I got the WTVN gig and my relationship with my father changed instantly. That trust and respect I felt was missing was immediate when my father saw me holding my own at 19 at a talk radio station. Everything changed. And with the success of that show the release of a CD was a logical next step.
Yeah, laugh all you want. But there's only
700 copies still sitting in my living room...
This was the last time my dad and I recorded together. It was actually quite an enjoyable experience with very little disagreements. He certainly disagreed with me a few times but seemed a bit more adventurous. I remember wanting to just bang on his out-of-tune piano during "Say It To Me" and him feeling that wasn't that great of an idea. As it stands I think it gives the song a more natural feeling. And therein lies the reason this was it. Our musical tastes just went in different directions. At WTVN I had access to a digital recording studio and was able to put together my own a capella songs. I didn't necessarily love a capella but it was mine. It was the first time I had control. It's why when I released "Hearing My Thoughts" I did it all in black and white with the disc being completely white. The opposite of the more colorful and produced "Stronger". Every sound on the disc was "natural" and without reverb or special effects. I was able to sing my mind and during my divorce, I certainly needed to do that.
Which brings us to what I felt at the time was gonna kill our relationship. That freakin' divorce. In mid-July of '97 Burgundie came to me and said she didn't have "those feelings" for me. In fact she was feeling them for others. She hadn't acted on them but knew this was a problem. Well what I thought was a bump in the road was soon OVER. By the end of July Burg said we would sign the seperation papers NOW because it took 6 weeks of seperation to file for the divorce. I was absolutely, positively SLAMMED. So on August 1st we signed the papers. The NEXT DAY my dad went off on me because I was moping around at his house and my temproary room was a mess. Said I had to MOVE ON and get over it. It had been a matter of hours since the seperation papers were signed! I never missed one SECOND of work during the whole ordeal and I felt I reacted quite well considering. The following week when I talked about it on the air even infuriated him more because I made it "public" and some relatives heard about the divorce on the air. I didn't have a choice in my mind. I couldn't talk to my mom...the mere mention of Burg's name made her cry. My dad made it clear who he thought was to blame, and I had spent the last 4 years of my life pursuing my career and being with Burg - I had no friends. The Late Show listeners were the only people that would...listen.
As I think of it now, I can't understand why this all happened. We've really never talked about this since it happened. I think in the end, time heals all wounds. Period. Even though we've never worked out these differences: it doesn't matter - though now I'm curious again - LOL.
My last 2 years in Ohio were pretty much the same. Things in my mind were strained between us. I wouldn't really talk to him about anything for fear of bringin up the past. Everything was rebuilt though in less than a year...
On June 30th of 1999 my dad saw me perform 4tvs for the first time. I remember him coming up to me after my first set and saying: "This is gonna work. Maybe not in this city, but this is gonna work." He was genuinely excited for me. When I lost my job at CD101 and decided to move to LA, our relationship was cemented. That day was so emotional. Everyone fighting back the tears, many of us losing...and me standing in my father's shoes more than my own. Watching your son drive off to California, breaking the common path you shared with him. I was taking the step that my dad didn't take (having a kid can do that to ya), and that made all the difference of the world.
It was an immediate closeness we've held ever since. I'm as excited about telling my dad shit that happens out here as I am living it myself. It's unique to say the least. It's also all predicated on the basis of us never having a real father-son relationship. We are 2 men in different stages of life that have a mutual respect for each other. We're friends. I'd do anything to help his career and vice-versa. On top of that, things are going well out here which certainly doesn't hurt.
Which leads us to me going back home and "Singin' with Dad". Watching this video for the first time that night just hit me really hard. There I was, a man at 25...best friends with my dad who is twice my age. I imagined showing MY kids this video in the years to come. Just one of those moments captured in time doing what we both love to do and have built our entire lives around. When you're a kid you can't imagine what you'll be doing when you're an adult. Being able to go to one of my dad's shows and perform with him is a great feeling. Now if I can only get him to do a 4tvs set...
original video file
APRIL 2001