Category: The Grateful Dead

Alligators in the Sewers Episode Seven


Episode Seven
Sam had been burning the candle at both ends. His ambition to write novels was almost equal to his desire to become a great lead guitarist. To date, he had self published two science fiction novels. He used the Amazon platform to sell his books and was enjoying moderately good sales. Unfortunately, he required other sources of revenue to pay his bills. He got a part-time job teaching creative writing one night a week at a local community college. The rest of his income came from his cut from his band’s performances at various bars in Manhattan. With these three streams of income, Sam could usually just squeak by paying his monthly bills each month.
Sam Bradley lived in a small bachelor’s apartment in East Manhattan. He had been fortunate to find an apartment complex that had rent control. Even with this advantage, Sam was often hard-pressed to stay afloat financially and because of this, he was almost constantly stressed out.
Sam worked hard at all his endeavours. He was not a naturally gifted musician, so he practised his guitar playing daily for at least two hours. He applied an equal amount of dedication to his writing and did an admirable amount of preparation for his creative writing classes.
To add to his issues with stress and anxiety, Sam was becoming chronically fatigued. One night during one of the Raccoons’ breaks, Sam told his bass player Glenn Williams about his exhaustion. Glenn was very willing to help as they were also close friends. Glenn offered Sam a couple of little white pills. Sam asked what they were and Glenn informed him that they were Dexedrine tablets.
Glenn Williams also had to work hard as he had to pay his ex-wife a hefty amount of alimony and child support. He had to hold down a full-time job is IT technician. The small amount of money he made as the bass player for the Raccoons allowed him a little bit of spending money for himself.
Two months ago, Glenn went to see his family doctor and complained about excessive daytime sleepiness. His doctor recommended that Glenn try taking Dexedrine to see if that would help boost his energy levels. It worked like a charm and within a couple of days Glenn was totally dependent on stimulants to get them through his long days.
The Rocky Raccoons basically played classic rock and as they worked hard as a unit over the last few years, they had become very good. The Raccoons were famous in the bars of East Manhattan. They knew their audiences well and what they wanted to hear.
What was popular varied somewhat depending upon which bar they were working, but they had built up a standard set of universal favourites. The Rocky Raccoons found they could never go wrong with songs like You Shook Me All Night Long by AC/DC and Crazy Train by Ozzy Osbourne. Other sure crowd pleasers included songs such as American Woman by the Guess Who and Taking Care of Business by Bachman Turner Overdrive. They learned these two songs from their rhythm guitar player, Kevin Watts who was a transplanted Canadian born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
Sam and Keith would sit down and write some original material whenever they got the chance and some times the band performed a couple of the original compositions during their performances.
The Rocky Raccoons were so popular that they had a group of fans who actually followed the band from bar to bar across East Manhattan. The Raccoons’ followers where nowhere near the size of the Grateful Dead’s famous Deadheads, but for a local band they had an impressive number of followers, both male and female. A couple of their female fans were groupies. The Raccoons’ groupies besides providing the band with the obvious favours and benefits were valuable for another reason. Two of their groupies also serviced the world famous bands when they played concerts in New York.
Alicia and Trixie would always put in a plug for the Rocky Raccoons when they talked to the famous musicians and bands. They would also speak with the band’s managers and promoters and encourage them to book the Raccoons as an opening act on the bands’ concert tours.
Occasionally, a well-known manager or promoter would drop by a local New York bar to see if the Rocky Raccoons were as good as Alicia and Trixie them out to be.

music musician musical instrument guitar
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Episode 14 of Keith Ross Novel


Episode 14

Keith Ross was an early riser. This was not by choice. His faithful fifteen- year old black lab, Rex would wake his owner up by licking his bare feet. Keith hadn’t slept on his king-sized bed since the night his ex-wife left home permanently. He didn’t like the dark. It scared him. Every emotion attached to living alone scared him. He chose to sleep on his old worn out leather sofa with Rex right beside him. Keith didn’t own a pair of pajamas. He preferred to fall asleep wearing his street clothes He usually dressed like the late Jerry Garcia, the legendary lead guitarist of the Grateful Dead. Like the great American musical icon, Keith tended to favor black tee-shirts and black sweat pants or stone washed blue denim jeans, relaxed fit of course.

Keith was actually a big fan of the Grateful Dead and lead guitarist Jerry Garcia in particular. He just wished that he that he didn’t resemble Jerry so closely and dreamed of having the musical talent of the late American icon.

When Rex had licked Keith’s feet long enough out to wake him up, Keith heard a loud knock on his front door. He groggily arose from his couch almost tripping over Rex in the process.

 

Jerry Garcia Guitar

Summer Dreams (excerpt two)


Rick had met her father when he went over to visit Misty one afternoon. Lloyd had long hair often worn in a ponytail, was tall, had a bit of a pot belly and was in his early forties. He bore somewhat of a resemblance to Pigpen of The Grateful Dead. Her dad played guitar and claimed to have been in a band in San Francisco. He said that his band was going to be signed by a major record label but his marital break-up had derailed these plans.
After the marital split he decided to move to Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada as his parents lived here. Lloyd realized that he had a poor track record for holding down a steady day job and if things really got tough he would have his parents within easy access to bail him out. Lloyd loved his daughter but he was not a disciplinarian. That had been her mother’s strength. Lloyd was a libertarian at heart and had trouble even trying to discipline himself. That was likely the reason that Misty chose to live with him instead of her mother.
Rick was quite infatuated with Misty but she did not appear to have any romantic interest in him. She made it clear to Rick that he was not her type, but that she didn’t mind “hanging out” with him from time to time. Rick held on to a hope that at some point during that summer, Misty would change her mind.
SOL book cover 1