Showing posts with label Kevin Broughton. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kevin Broughton. Show all posts

Jun 7, 2024

Countin’ The Miles: A Conversation with Jesse Daniel

Countin’ The Miles: A Conversation with Jesse Daniel



By Kevin Broughton


Four studio albums in, nobody can question Jesse Daniel’s commitment to keeping alive the flame of traditional country music. The Austin-based California native raised the eyebrows of his peers with a 2019 Ameripolitan award, then cemented that acclaim with Rollin’ On in 2020 and 2021’s Beyond These Walls. A live album last year set the table for his “country-est” record yet, Countin’ The Miles, which drops today. 


With each album’s release and the accompanying wider – if gradual – acclaim, it’s the same humble dude on the other end of the phone. His past struggles with addiction are no secret, even if there are fewer overt references to it in the songs these days; but there’s an even-keeled ethos to him born of recovery. Nothing’s too high or low, and there’s always an aura of gratitude about him, using “we” more often than “I” in conversation, and always staying positive. 


He takes simple joy in country music, and wants others to as well. And nobody’s doing authentic country music better than Jesse Daniel. We caught up with him for a few minutes to talk about his first stab at producing, signing with a new label, sassy girlfriend duets, and that other Haggard. 


Seems like forever ago when we first met, in February of 2020, just before the world changed. You nicknamed that tour “Chasin’ Jason,” as you were following The Stragglers’ bus from one opening gig to the next. A little more than four years later, and you’ve got “people,” at least in your publicity shop! How can his own tour bus not be the next thing for Jesse Daniel? 


(Laughs) Man, I hope there’s a bus in my future! That’s the dream we’re working toward. You know, tours like you mentioned with Jason and a lot of others, the “chase the bus” thing is just paying my dues. But I feel like we’re earning it and moving toward that goal. 


Something else jumps of the credits page, too: “Produced, arranged and performed by Jesse Daniel.” That’s a big step, considering how tight & professional the production of the last two studio albums were. What drove that decision, and what stood out to you about the experience of producing your own album? Would you do it again? 


I would definitely do it again, and I certainly hope to produce more records for both me and other artists in the future; I’d like to help their vision come to life. I think it started for me when I was about nine or ten years old. My dad had an old 8-track recorder, and I would take his old tapes unbeknownst to him and record over them. One specifically he didn’t appreciate was a Jeff Beck 8-track. But I would tape my own songs over them.


My brother had a drum kit, and I had my dad’s bass and guitar, and I just plugged them directly in; I had a little microphone, too, so I’d just record drums, guitar, bass, and vocals myself. That was my first experience. It was super-primitive and sounded really rough, but ever since then I’ve been fascinated with the idea of not just writing songs, but putting a recording together; all the components. So I was finally ready to do that again, on my own, and dive into this project without any co-contributors on that side. It was really down to me. 


There’s another noticeable change from albums past: Your partner, sometimes co-writer and harmony vocalist, Ms. Jodi Lyford, gets to spread her wings and sing lead on a couple verses for different songs. Understandably, some fans may ask, “What took y’all so long?” Is there a solo record in Jodi’s future? 


Yeah! That was something really exciting for us to do on this album. Jodi’s been singing with me – officially – since about 2018, but even before that we sang and wrote together. She’s been singing harmony with the band for years and years now, so it was a natural progression to let her take the lead on some songs. She’s really coming into her own as a lead vocalist, and it’s definitely a step in the right direction of doing something in the future. Yeah, I hope she would want to do that because it would be a lot of fun to do a Jodi record.  


Before we get into some of the cuts on Countin’ The Miles, I’m curious about your songwriting process. Do you typically start with lyrics? Is there a phrase in your mind you try to wrap a melody around? 


A lot of times it starts with an idea or a phrase…or a line. That’s usually how it starts out. And I’ll almost have a melody associated with that line already, you know? Usually with the hook of the chorus, and I try to build around that. Other times, I’ve just had a guitar lick and just come up with lyrics that kind of fit the mood of what I’m playing. 


This time around, I wrote a lot of these songs on the road, so they have a moving feel to them. So maybe they’re more introspective, just because of the time I had to dive into those subjects. 


“That’s My Kind of Country” is a sweet follow-up companion to “Simple Things” from Beyond These Walls.


Definitely…

 

…Is this sort of a flag-planting, a reminder to everybody: Hey, we’re still doing this “traditional country” thing over here! How important is it to have a positive, uplifting vibe on your albums? 


Thanks, man, I appreciate that. I definitely think it’s in my style to do things like “Simple Things,” and it really was a follow-up. I wanted to put that flag in the ground: I love traditional country music, I love fishing, I love doing outdoor stuff. I feel like in a lot of music today that’s being called “country,” or masqueraded as such, people will actually become offended when they found out you actually grew up in the country and are into doing country stuff! Like that’s taboo, and we’re supposed to just be cosplaying at it. This is just me digging my heels in and saying “This is who I am.” And I know a lot of my fans share that sentiment. 


As far as the positive message goes, yeah, I try to carry that on through the records because life isn’t perfect, but I’m on a positive upswing compared to where I started. And that’s what I want to keep going.   


I have a tee shirt about somebody playing “my kind of country,” by the way. Between your last album’s closer (“I’ll Be Back Around”) and “Ol’ Montana” on this one, you’ve mastered the technique of the sneaky murder ballad/prison song. In each case, it took me about a verse and a half to figure out the subject matter was actually dark. Is a murder ballad or two obligatory? 

I really do love the tradition of those, and not just the country songs. Folk music, blues, bluegrass, they all have a great tradition of murder ballads. And usually at the end it’s the man killing the woman, like in “Knoxville Girl” or whatever. But in Ol’ Montana I wanted to allude to the man shooting her lover, and by the end of the song you figure out he’s writing from inside a prison cell. 


Everyone can point at me and laugh for not knowing this guy is a thing, let’s just stipulate to that right now. But I listened to “Tommorow’s Good Ol’ Days” and thought, “Dang, that’s got a Merle vibe to it.” And I look at the credits and see “Ben Haggard,” because of course it is! What in the world is going on here? 


I really wanted to do that song justice, because it really is a tip of the hat to Merle Haggard. I had been talking to Jodi about it, and she was the one to suggest getting Ben to sing. So on a whim I texted him what we had of the song. He got back to me almost immediately and said he loved it. It came together really naturally, and I think he really makes the song what it is. Having that Haggard voice on there didn’t hurt it one bit. 



Of the two duets with Jodi on this record, I really like “Steppin’ Out,” because it reminds me of some of the sassy collaborations down through the years. Sounds like y’all had fun on this one; did y’all write this one together? 


Yeah, we wrote that one together and it was really a lot of fun. It reminds me of some of the old classic Conway & Loretta duets. It’s hard to beat a good sassy cheatin’ song, and we had a blast. 


I teased you a little bit about having “people” at the outset (tell them I said thanks for not putting a hard-out time on this interview. Next time may be different!) But you did recently sign with Lightning Rod Records out of Nashville. I’m curious, first, whether that came before or after this album was recorded, and second, how it’s affected you in this next phase of your career?


Signing with Lightning Rod came about while the record was already in the works. My plan all along when recording it was to try and get it to a bigger audience, and to do things bigger than we’d done before. I got in touch with Logan Rogers from Lightning Rod – they’re affiliated with New West Records – and they have a great roster. Logan works really hard for his artists, but he also doesn’t just work with anybody. He’s got a selective group he works with, and might take on one artist/record per quarter that he focuses on. 


With his level of devotion it was really a no-brainer. We had talked to some major labels that just kind of gave us the runaround; it was all about numbers, or maybe they wanted to talk about making some “more commercial-sounding stuff.” With Logan, I told him, “I want to make the most country album I’ve ever made,” and he said, “Cool. Let’s do it.” Lightning Rod’s a good home for us. 


Finally, since you now have “people,” could you hit them up about a future Atlanta date on a tour? 


I would love to come back to Atlanta, and I can’t believe it’s been that long. We’ve had some requests from Georgia, Alabama, Florida, and the Southeast, it’s just been hard to make work, routing-wise. 


It’s a target-rich environment of country music-loving rednecks down here, man. Folks will love you. 


I know! Those are my people. I’ve gotta get down there. We’ll make it happen. 



May 17, 2024

Jeremy Pinnell / "The Ballad of 1892" / Red Clay Music Foundry

Jeremy Pinnell, after a three-year absence, graced the State of Georgia with a set at the Red Clay Music Foundry in Duluth on April 20. He's backed by Adam Nurre (drums, harmony vocals), Matt McCormick (bass), and Junior Tutwiler (lead guitar) on this crowd-pleasing version of "The Ballad of 1892."

When asked what was his favorite part of this tour, Pinnell said, "Definitely meeting Kevin and signing his guitar."*

*This quote cannot be verified.
~Kevin Broughton

Apr 12, 2024

Mixed Music Action: Volume 3, No. 1



By Jeremy Pinnell & Kevin Broughton

This weekend features one of the greatest cards in UFC history, so what better time for the return of your favorite combat troubadour and his trusty scribe? Georgia Pinnell fans, there’s big news for you, too, so let’s dig right in.

What's up, partner? Been a good minute. We've got two major events coming up shortly, UFC 300, and the return of Jeremy Pinnell to the Peach State for the first time in three years. Which are you looking more forward to? I mean, pay-per-views come around every few weeks, but how pumped are you to hang with your partner-bro in journalisming? And do you know anybody who can get a boy on the guest list?

Kevin, I’m stoked for this Pay Per View. I wish I was gonna be home to watch it, but whatevs. Also, I am stoked to hang out and officially meet you in person. I feel like we’ve been going back and forth for over two years on whether or not you’re a government spy or some kind of plant, to expose the alt country music scene for what it really is? I’m guessing a little bit of both but I’m all in either way. Honestly, I’m just happy to be on the road. 

If your phone’s not getting blown up with money requests from the RFK Jr. campaign, it’s missing a great opportunity. This UFC card..."stacked" and "loaded" don't really seem to do it justice. Just to give the fans some perspective, we've got the No. 5 and No. 2 contenders going at it for the next shot at the 205 title; Calvin Kattar fighting the former bantamweight champ; and former women's welterweight champion Holly Holm facing an incoming judo beastess...on the preliminary card. How nuts is this lineup?

Dawg…even the early prelims are worth the pay per view buy in my opinion. This will be pure entertainment all night. 

I want to get to the main card in a second, but there's been a lot of buzz about the lady newcomer, Kayla Harrison. She won judo gold medals in the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, fighting at 172 pounds, and ran through the 155 division in PFL. Now she'll fight former women's champ Holly Holm...at 135 pounds. 

Harrison is close to a -500 favorite in her UFC debut. But man, she's probably been not just cutting weight, but making major lifestyle and physiological changes. That's a big challenge, but if she gets to 135 the day before the fight, do you see bad things for the lovely Holly Holm?

I watched her sizzle reel, and she is an absolute animal but 135 lbs. is a huge cut from 175. I’m assuming Holly is 100% comfortable fighting at that weight? I’m a Holly fan but we’ll see.

See YouTube Short Izzy Couldn't Stop My Takedowns

Looking to the main card, man, what a spread! Let's start with former lightweight champ Charles Oliveira, whose only loss in about 10 years is to Islam Makhachev. He's the No. 1 contender for the belt, and he's an underdog to Arman Tsarukyan, who's number 4 in line. It says a lot about a packed 155 division, doesn't it? 

Honestly, I’m just excited to see Oliveira fight. He such a measured martial artist and his submission game is one of the best. Both their records kind of even out. Very exciting matchup. 

Dana White threw a fun one in for the fans: Justin Gaethje will put his BMF belt on the line against Max Holloway. This one ought to be fun; I think Justin's a healthy favorite for a reason, but Max is a tough out for anybody. What's your read on this one? 

I love the BMF belt! Justin is one of my favorite fighters but so is Max, and Max is only 31, and only getting better. He struggled with Volk, which really surprised me how much he took. That fight made you realize how good Volk really was. This matchup is just pure excitement and fun. Both of these guys are killers.

Turning to music, word on the streets you've been spinning a lot of Sierra Ferrell. Mixed Music Action Headquarters approves! In these days when a fella can't go 30 seconds without hearing about Taylor Swift or Beyonce, what do you like most about your fellow Appalachian artist?

Sierra seems like she’s just doing what she wants, and people are catching on. I love it when artists do what they want and people catch up. I had the opportunity to see her live last year, and she was amazing; blew everyone away. Her new record is so powerful; it takes you to a place, and that’s how you know it’s good: When you find yourself somewhere else.

It’s powerful.



Also, I told you I was listening to BigXThaplug and you paid no mind. [EDITOR’S NOTE: Sometimes you assume things were told you in confidence.] But in this serious time you need people enjoying life, and I’ve been going through his entire catalog. It may be the best hip hop going right now. I’m answering these questions in the tour van. You owe me a coffee. I appreciate ya, Kevin. 





Feb 17, 2024

Saturday Night Music / Cary Hudson / "Jellyroll"


In 2004 following the release of his sophomore solo album, Cool Breeze, former Blue Mountain frontman Cary Hudson took his band to Europe. Four years -- and several more solo albums -- later, Hudson and former wife/bassist Laurie Stirratt would reform Blue Mountain, but this appearance on the German TV show, Rockpalast, shows the veteran Mississippi blues man at his peak.
~Kevin Broughton


Dec 15, 2023

Mixed Music Action, Vol. 2, No. 5


By Jeremy Pinnell & Kevin Broughton
 

The UFC closes out the year with its final pay-per-view of 2023, as do your humble journalistic correspondents, Jeremy “I’ll choke your ass out” Pinnell, and Kevin “don’t do it with the actual blue belt, please save my dignity” Broughton, with their expert analysis. Seriously: This might be a fight worth the 70-ish bucks Dana is charging via ESPN+. Or not. Read on.

 

Kevin:  Hey, dude. It's been a minute. These last few UFC events have been pretty underwhelming, and you've been busy. Playing music and (checks notes) earning a blue belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu! First off, congratulations. Let's use this moment to educate me a little on BJJ; I assume there's a basic set of standards (holds/escapes/etc.) you have to achieve. In general terms, what involved in earning a blue belt, and what was the process like for you? 

 

Jeremy:
It took me almost 3 years to get my blue belt, maybe a little more? I was traveling quite a bit and I would become inconsistent in my training. I don’t know much about rank but I’m surely beginning to understand, and your capacity to use and comprehend technique has a big role in advancement. Plus commitment, obviously. 

If I recall correctly, I had to go through multiple guard passing techniques and sweeps. I’m sure there was more involved, but my memory goes quick these days.

 

Kevin: After some not-so-compelling fight cards, UFC 296 has excellent potential to close out the year on a high note. Colby "Make Fighting Stupid Again" Covington gets his third shot at welterweight gold, this time against Leon Edwards...who's twice beaten Covington's former nemesis, Kamaru Usman. I have to say, I think the wrong fighter is favored here; Edwards is a -155 favorite to Colby's +130. My gut tells me Covington's size, strength and wrestling will be too much for Leon. Pinnell, am I missing something?

 

Jeremy: No, I don’t think you’re missing anything. Colby is a banger. It’s gonna be interesting; although I like Edwards he wouldn’t be my favorite on this fight.

   

Kevin:  There are a couple of tasty matchups on the undercard. UFC all-around nice guy and welterweight gatekeeper Stephen "Wonderboy" Thompson stands between Kazakhstan mauler Shavkat Rakhmonov and a run at the 170 title. These Soviet-bloc Sambo dudes are all pretty scary; can Wonderboy keep this guy at range? I kinda crave a Wonderboy spin-kick for the upset win, but that’s me talking with my heart. 


 

Jeremy: Shavkat’s record is clean. Wonderboy always amazes me. That’s an interesting matchup. Gonna make for a great fight.

 

Kevin: Finally, may we talk about Tony Ferguson? From October 2013 to June 2019 our guy won 12 straight fights, besting the likes of Rafael dos Anjos, Edson Barboza, Josh Thompson, and Athony Pettis. Then he lost to Justin Gaethje and five more guys in succession. Tony's 39 and on a six-fight skid. Does he have enough in the tank to beat Fatty Pimblett, the most overrated UFC fighter since Coke Monkey McGregor? 


Jeremy: Honestly, after seeing Paddy propped up by the UFC, this is kind of a lame fight considering Tony is on his last leg. Although I hope Tony knocks him out. 

 

Kevin: Fine, but I’m pretty sure he goes by “Fatty.” And Tony is kind of a brain-dead lunatic, but I’m with you. 

 

You recently closed out a stretch of dates to end your touring year.  Did you have a favorite, or most memorable this year, and are you trying out any new material on the road? 

 

Jeremy:  I’ve been to New York multiple times, and this time it was different. It was like I understood it or something? We had lunch at the famous Nom Wah Tea House, and I bought a fake Rolex and gifts for the family. It was maybe a highlight. We also hit Texas this year, and that was a great tour with good friends. It’s been a good year. Of course we’ve been running new ideas; you have to. 

 

Kevin: You told me you've been listening to Croy And The Boys a good bit here lately, and I'm thankful you turned me on to them! Other than the honky-tonk ethos, what drew you to these guys? Have y'all ever crossed paths? 

 

Jeremy: So, I got to meet these guys at the Ameripolitan awards and just dove into their music after hearing the tune “I Get By.” I felt like I fell upon a gold mine. Seriously, they might be my favorite current band? 

 

Kevin: Well, here’s one of theirs from 2017, “Leaving’s The Last Thing,” but stick with me anyway, Slick.


  

Kevin: I gave you the rare homework assignment a couple weeks back: Watch this documentary about Tom Petty and the making of Wildflowers. I tend to come up goose eggs when I float a musical suggestion to you; please tell me you're not a Tom Petty hater, Jeremy! Did anything stand out to you about the recording/producing/song selection portions of this film? 

 

Jeremy: Actually Kevin, I did watch it and enjoyed it very much. I love Tom Petty. I connected with his relationships with musicians, and the idea of moving away from the normal way of doing things and making your own path to create good art. It’s hard to create something beautiful in a hostile or damaged place with musicians. It’s good to do your own thing. Unapologetically. 

 

Kevin: Aight, Cuz. Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year to all the Pinnells.

 

 

 

Nov 16, 2023

A Poignant, Bittersweet Coda: Tom Petty’s Final Farewell

By Kevin Broughton

 

While it’s difficult to believe, last month marked the sixth anniversary of the passing of Tom Petty. If there’s a Kubler-Ross subset of the stages of grief for great artists, one step is the crushing knowledge that his catalog is now finite. And of course, there’s the garden-variety heartache that accompanies the death of the front man of arguably the greatest American rock band. 

 

But with a cinematic time capsule, Tom Petty: Somewhere You Feel Free – The Making of Wildflowers, fans of the Heartbreakers get a final look back. It’s not new – there was a limited theatrical release in 2021 – but will now enjoy wide viewership thanks to Amazon Prime. 

 

Directed by Mary Wharton and Anne Ethridge, it relies heavily on a tranche of old footage someone discovered in the early 2000s – a video diary of the making of what Petty considered his best work, shot from 1993-1995 and never seen before. There’s a surreal aspect that makes the film all the more haunting: Intermixed with scenes of the album’s production – Tom was in his early 40s and had a little more than 20 years to live – are present day interviews with Heartbreakers Benmont Tench and Mike Campbell, along with Rick Rubin, the producer Petty settled on reluctantly. It’s counterintuitive to hear Petty say at the time, “You know, Rick was a lot younger than all of us,” then cut to a scene of the silver-bearded uber mensch producer reflecting on work now three decades old. 

 

The Wildflowers album – not a Heartbreakers record – came at a time of transition for Petty, whose marriage was falling apart, and the band. The rhythm section underwent a 100 percent turnover. Drummer Stan Lynch, seemingly always mercurial and contrarian, was underwhelmed with the Wildflowers demos and moved on. The last cut he ever played with the band was “Mary Jane’s Last Dance,” and that wasn’t even a part of those sessions. Petty needed two more cuts for a greatest hits album he owed the suits to get out of his deal with MCA. 

 

Bassist Ron Blair – burned out by the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle – punched out to open a lingerie shop. Petty poached Howie Epstein from Del Shannon, who would put in ten great years before succumbing to heroin. His presence on screen evokes another heartache. 


 

New drummer Steve Farrone, who would be a Heartbreaker to the end, tells the wonderful story of his top-secret audition. He had no idea what was going on, “Then I walked in and saw Tom Petty and Mike Campbell in the control room, and said, ‘Ooooooooh.’”

 

Footage of the composing/arranging/recording is bittersweet; seeing the chemistry, the artistry – the love – it’s so beautiful and touching. But the knowledge that you’ll never see it again will leave a hole in your heart. A constant back-and-forth during the process was whether to make Wildflowers a double album. That was ultimately decided in the negative, and Petty spent three agonizing months just whittling and sequencing the final 15 songs that make up the hour-and-six-minute record. But the scrawny kid from Gainesville was rewarded with a posthumous triumph in 2020, when the mammoth, 54-track Wildflowers & All The Rest was released. 

 

Rest easy, Tom. You’re missed. 

 

 

Jul 28, 2023

Mixed Music Action / Vol. 2, No. 4


By Jeremy Pinnell & Kevin Broughton


This weekend’s UFC 291 fight card may be the best of the year so far and includes the revival of a “fun for the fans” faux-title. Let’s dig into another edition of Mixed Music Action. And look! We’ve got company, too.  


Kevin: Saturday's UFC 291 features a great card. There's no conventional title on the line, but Dana White has reincarnated the "BMF" belt with the retirement of Jorge Masvidal. And you know what, JP? Let's just give the folks some highlights of that scrap -- Masvidal's last win in the UFC -- from almost four years ago:



Personally, I like the idea of the BMF ("Baddest Mother Fucker," for those wondering) belt; it's cool for the fans. I thought Diaz-Masvidal was a perfect matchup, and I really like Dustin-Justin 2 for the second incarnation. Your thoughts?


Jeremy: Hey, Kevin. We’re on tour right now so I’m gonna include our tour manager -- and my jiu jitsu instructor -- Mr. Blayne Hodges, who has kindly taken some of his time to hit the road. He’s been a good friend and huge part -- maybe the biggest part -- of my martial arts journey. He also teaches my son and I’m grateful for his friendship.


Kevin: A little irregular, but I’ll allow it. Is there some proof that this Mr. Hodges exists? 


Jeremy: Well, here’s a picture from the other night…


Kevin: Oh, my goodness. You & Blayne have the floor.


Jeremy: I’m a Gaethje fan, but Dustin’s jiu jitsu is legit. It’ll be a banger for sure. Either way I’ll like the outcome. I’m gonna pass on to Blayne. 


Blayne: I like both guys but have always had a slight personal bias towards Dustin. He’s a little bit cleaner, but still thrives in the pocket under fire. One of the best switch hitters we’ve seen outside (Max) Holloway and (Cory) Sandhagen.  I think his volume and composure gets the job done again, but Justin is a dog for sure.  I also like the BMF title --  nothing wrong with a little theatrics. It’s good for the sport.


Kevin: Masvidal said that Dana "picked the right two guys" for BMF 2, so I'm excited. I don't think we'll see much grappling. 


There are several other intriguing fights on this card. In the light heavyweight division -- where the belt keeps getting vacated due to injuries -- Jan Blachowicz is a slight favorite over former 185 champ Alex Pereira. You have to think the winner will fight for the belt next. 


At welterweight, Stephen "Wonderboy" Thompson -- the #7 contender -- reprises his role as division gatekeeper and will be a slight favorite over *another* Pereira, this one named Michel. Somehow Tony Ferguson keeps getting paid to fight; he's a big underdog to Bobby Green at lightweight. And finally, there's a tasty, contrast-of-styles fight at 170 with grappler Michael Chiesa facing off with striker Kevin Holland.


I think this card is fire. What blows your dress up here?


Jeremy: I mean I’m stoked to see all of it, but Blayne and I were just saying how crazy it is that Wonderboy is still in the top ten. He’s been at it for a while and is still incredible. I’m going with Tony in the Bobby Green fight. Also, I think Blachowicz will probably dominate if it goes to the ground. 


Blayne: The whole card is really compelling front to back.  I’m curious to see how Alex does moving up. His hand speed and power are obviously always a factor but that cut to 185 had to be killing him. All the OG’s around him talk about how big he is so potentially that could really help his gas tank.  Jan has underrated grappling in my opinion, but I’m not sure it will be enough to get the finish.  Excited to see how that one plays out.


Kevin: Sorry, I just keep looking at that picture of you two, wondering if anybody would be crazy enough to try & swipe a tee shirt from the merch table.


There's one dude worth mentioning on the prelim card, because he's a fan favorite. I mean, who doesn't love The Black Beast, Derrick Lewis? But lo and behold, dude's lost four of his last five (and they haven't been pretty losses) and I find myself dreading every fight for him. I guess when I look at the way Robbie Lawler went out with a win, it's sad to see guys like Cowboy and Jorge and Tony Ferguson go out on long losing streaks. Am I too sentimental?


Jeremy: Don’t get soft on me Kevin! I feel similarly, but just from my observation, it doesn’t look like Derrick cares. So, whatevs. Also, Lawler shouldn’t have been in a prelim for his retirement. That’s like a gold watch and fuck off.


Blayne:
I understand the sentiment, but I think fighters have a clear choice to move on at an appropriate time --  and some hold on for different reasons. Whether that be an unrealistic perception of where their skills are currently in relation to the other top athletes, or just for a paycheck.  I hate to see it but it’s a part of the human condition.  To walk away from fighting for some is like looking at their mortality.



Kevin: You've been back out on the road. I believe you've been to Tulsa, Little Rock and Dallas so far, and you're in Austin tonight (The White Horse.) Anything fun happening? Met any cool people? Playing any new material? Will you ever again play Atlanta, Georgia?

I have so many questions. Go.


Jeremy: Tulsa was great. We rehearsed in St. Louis on Monday, then the air conditioning went out. Some good people in Tulsa helped us out, and now the van is an ice box. Little Rock at the Whitewater tavern was super fun. A lot of good people and good energy. Friday the Whitehorse is gonna be great. Always a good time. I’m a big fan of Texas.


Kevin: You fellas have fun out there. (No need to say “Stay safe.”) And just hear me out, now: I think you guys, if you’re ever looking to fill some down time, well, the possibilities are endless.





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