Hope everyone has been well and happy since I last posted.
They say that the first couple of weeks of January is supposed to be the most depressing time of the year for many people.
A time when spirits are low and the sun hardly shines.
When the sobering, harsh reality sets in that the year has barely begun and already your New Year's resolutions are proving to be too much to actually keep up with.
Ah, New Year's Eve.
When folks get totally wasted and promise themselves they're gonna stop drinking or that they'll get fit as soon as all the party food gets put away.
When they are compelled to blurt out such twaddle as 'This is gonna be our year, baby!', somehow forgetting that it's exactly what they said 12 months ago, almost to the minute.
When they put themselves under the pressure of having to once again pretend that everything will change dramatically somewhere between 11:58, December 31st and 12:03, January 1st.
A cruel folly to me.
We love to draw imaginary lines in the sand and dare ourselves to cross them, beating ourselves up when we do...or don't.
I'm expecting things to be pretty much as they've been with a few temporary changes of location here and there.
Of course I may be wrong because there's no way I can actually know what will happen, but I won't be making believe I do.
There are a couple of things I've been working on that I hope to at least get rolling before I put myself in a state of suspended animation and head to Australia right after Easter.
One is a short documentary - working title: Backstage with Dennis Locorriere - a candid look at my life on the road on, but mostly off the stage.
I've seen a draft edit of some of the footage and was plesantly surprised at how boring it wasn't.
As with most things I have no idea if it will ever come to fruition, but I've enjoyed the scrutiny of doing it more than I imagined I would, putting a lot of things in perspective for me.
That perspective is something easily lost when you're in your 60s and still basically doing what you did in your 20s.
Things evolve, sometimes in ways you didn't see happening until you stop to take a hard look at it.
Valuable stuff whether the project ever sees a commercial end or not.
I've also been working with Universal on a project they contacted me about.
They recently acquired the Hook catalogue and were interested in getting something out there that illustrates the whole musical journey the band made while we were together.
It will be forty track Hook compilation showcasing all the many facets of the group.
The first of it's kind as far I as I'm concerned.
Might be nothing new in it to a lot of the diehards out there, but for the casual listener or totally uniniated music fan - and let's face it, that's who you look for when it comes to your old catalogue, isn't it? - it will be the first set to include tracks from across all the albums, released on every label and presented in the same package.
From the ridiculous to the sublime.
Ballads to raunch.
Love songs to rock and roll.
Poignant to silly.
There will probably be some TV, radio and press for me to do to promote it, but I'm not sure what just yet.
I'll let you know
I'll say no more until I see where it's going, but, as Universal is looking at a March release date, that won't be too long.
I want to say 'thanks' to everyone that sent me well wishes in email, letters and posts of concern for how I was feeling.
I must admit I was knocked for six in the past several months.
I'm the guy who usually rolls right thru cold and flu season without too much discomfort.
But from smashing up my ribs to the sinus infection that burst my ear drum to the nondescript virus I caught that just pretty much laid me out for another few weeks, I was feeling pretty rough.
I'll tell you how rough.
I went to see a doctor!
Now, that's serious in my world because I haven't needed a doctor very many times in my life.
No major aliments, no overnight hospital stays, no broken bones.
But this thing I had or that had me was unlike anything I'd ever had.
My temperature seemed to go up and down at random times.
First I'm freezing, then sweating.
If I could even fall asleep I'd have weird dreams.
No appetite, a bit queasy all the time.
But no coughs, sneezes, aches, pains or cold/ flu like symptoms.
It felt like it was just in me.
The doctor checked me over, said ribs take awhile to heal but I was fine, looked in my ears and said affected one was mending nicely and told me I had a virus that would run it's course and exit when it was good and ready.
I must say his professional and not overly worrisome opinion that my immune system had simpy been maxed out and I should stop worrying about all the commitments I have coming up - a factor that was definitely adding to my misery - and just let myself rest had me feeling 30% better even as I walked out of his office.
I'd like to take a second here to say that while I am truly grateful for people's concerns I don't appreciate being diagnosed in email or being given examples of how someone they know 'had the same thing' and it turned out to be something horrible.
It was suggested by someone that I could be bleeding internally from my rib mishap.
I was called an 'idiot' for not taking better care of myself.
My ego was called into question - 'How full of yourself must you be to think you're not susceptible to the same illnesses others get?' 'You're not a young man anymore, you know!'
Really? I hadn't noticed.
To these people I can only say 'Piss off! and 'Keep your alarmist bullshit to yourself!'
I've always been a physical kind of guy.
I've walked when most people have driven or taken public transport.
I use the machine a great deal and can usually tell when it's ticking funny.
Like I said, I'm still doing what I've always done, with the same intensity.
I'm gonna know when things change, even slightly.
And I pay close attention to it all.
So, thanks but no thanks for that kind of backhanded support.
It's not kind or thoughtful and can only serve to make a person feel worse.
OK, well, it's pissing down today but I have a few things to do so I'm going to take this battered old war wagon out and run some errands.
I'm feeling just fine now, by the way.