Archive for the ‘celebrity’ Category

I’m going to need to skip a couple years, a lot happened that I just can’t place.  I’ll refer to things as I go along.  But for right now, I’ve copied a FB post to explain the past 3-years…

WALKER CAINE · WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 22, 2018

Dead Man Walking

This will be my last post/update on the subject and a synopsis to bring others up to speed. I didn’t expect I’d still be here… pretty sure no one else did either

In a nutshell…

It’s now been 2-years (Aug. 2016) since the 3rd time my BP dropped to 50- (maybe 4th, never told anyone about the freeway). Even though I heard a paramedic say “think we lost him” I refused to go to the hospital. The next was an ambulance ride to the hospital but they obviously didn’t find anything.

Instead of behaving myself, and being an adventurous type, I packed up the bike a month or two later and headed east to do a couple make-a-wish kind of things (ironically cancer/leukemia patients) and maybe play some town parks as I do from time to time on the road while touring (I’ve done all my touring by motorcycle since 2009 renting/borrowing/shipping equipment as needed – usually speakers). I stopped in the Ozarks to wait out a wall of some nasty storms sitting between me and the coast, but while sitting there something told me I needed to get home.

Wouldn’t let me go, so I cancelled everything and headed back West through the desert with 2 of the only breakdowns I’ve ever had traveling on a bike. But a couple days after I got home it happened again. Good timing eh? This wasn’t like the others though and I was given no choice, they said I was making no sense (yeah, like I ever do, right?) and I had the biggest headache of my life. Off we went to Dignity’s Chandler Regional.

As it turned out I had 6 brain cancer tumors and stage 4 incurable/inoperable lung cancer. Terminal all the way around. I’m told the Neurosurgeon spent 2 days talking me into removing the largest tumor (fortunately it was also the easiest to get to). I don’t remember most of that week nor a lot of the month that followed. I do remember him saying that if left alone I’d be paralyzed within the week and dead in a couple more. Having nothing to lose I signed the paper & agreed; I mean who would want to be taken care of in a paralyzed state if you have a choice? I still don’t understand how he did it – talk about the detail that must have been involved! 7-hours later they took me back to my room.

What was left is that type of cancer that gives a max life expectancy of 6-months, which in my mind kinda says that, statistically, I should have died 5 times by now and maybe add a couple for those blood pressure drops.

Anyway, a medical Oncologist and a brain Oncologist got hold of me and once the surgeon released me they went to work. I was put through radiation for the tumors and then chemotherapy & immunotherapy to shrink the cancers. As time went by, bone cancer and an Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm were found. Also along the way had 2 cataracts removed (prompted by the radiation), and an emergency Pericardiocentesis to drain some 700ml+ (?!) of fluid from that sack around the heart, which added a Cardiologist to the mix.

I had a lung deflate somewhere along the road, fortunately they had a bicycle pump handy. Have osteoporosis and osteoarthritis from 3 fractures in my back (kept touring) Also had other things to deal with but I won’t go there, don’t want to sound like I’m whining… It’s quite a list. Let’s just say I was pretty useless for a few months and dyslexic… yeah that was fun

Fast forward to today…

All my scans say I’m doing well and stable. After dealing with a couple untreated vertebrae fractures the past 10-years and kidney stones for 20, maybe that’s what drove me on, I was already accustomed to pain and wasn’t about to give in to a bunch of petty crap.

We’ve gotten the Chemo down to once a month and I go in for MRI/PET/CAT scans every 3-months for the rest of my life. I should thank Dr. Anita, Dr. Alice and all the nurses & techs at the Ironwood Cancer and Research Centers (Chandler) for looking out for me and ignoring my comments of “we have to stop sometime”, not to mention a flow of some generally bad jokes. Of course other Doctors have some fun with me too – “you’ve beaten the odds”, “are you still alive?”. LOL

And of course my three lovely girls who shifted their schedules to keep a watch over me deserve more thanks than I can give but they still won’t take me to buy a car/truck or go anywhere alone. Working way too much to keep ahead of the game, Lynda was able to telecommute for the first few months and now often for my appointments, spending that much time with me cannot be easy But hey, it was their idea so I stay out of it. Now I hardly ever see them and I’m still equilibrium challenged, keeping me off the bike

My weight keeps going up & down and I could stand to gain a few pounds and more exercise, so still don’t have that internal strength or balance to get an 800-lb bike back out on the road, but hey, everyone needs a goal, right? Also, thanks to the help of friends and past unreleased recordings, I have 3+ CD’s worth of songs I’m trying to get release-worthy. Not my best work but it does occupy the times when I can focus – which is less often than I like to think. My creative side has taken a nose-dive but shows up now & then for a couple days.

Still just hanging around to see what happens next. A born philosopher, I’m doing fine. Who knows, I could still be around for a long time but I go to sleep every night not expecting to wake up. I’m pretty sure I must have angels looking out for me, I’ve dodged way too many bullets over the years, but I’ve aged considerably this past year.

But for when the morning comes that I don’t wake up, I’ll just thank everyone now for humoring me all these months. If something should cross your path along your trip through life, have faith in yourself and keep on keeping on.

Sometimes being stubborn works!

 

 

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Been thinking this morning (the kind of thing that gets me in trouble) and thought I would do a count of all the States I hit between May-June and late August-September of this 2010 season.  I lost my GPS in New Mexico and my nifty Harley map took flight I’m guessing somewhere in Oklahoma, so I really got around during the September trip by just saying “that-a-way”.

I could list Towns, but towns I went through – way too many (I do highways remember?).  Towns I stopped in – still quite a few.  Towns I played in – that’s all relative to ones I was invited to versus the ones I just stopped & set up shop.

I based out of Arizona and Arkansas, so I went in & out of them a lot; and, of course, always cutting through Texas to avoid some of the harsher weather.  I may have also done East Kansas one trip & West Kansas the other … just like North & South Indiana, Eastern & Western Virginia, and so on.  Unfortunately it seemed that every time I had a break to go visit with media-types it would decide to rain; not your everyday rain but a downpour that lasted for days.

I’m less organized than I should be, generally just keeping receipts to jog my memory.  For some reason I learned a lot this year compared to previous years; I’m thinking maybe its because I got it into my head to actually keep track for possible publicity purposes; but I still didn’t do a very good job of it.  I think 2011 will be a whole new ballgame… people are starting to come out wanting to get involved – I like that!

For today, I’ll stick to States… Y’all Ready??

Arizona
New Mexico
Texas
Oklahoma
Kansas
Nebraska
South Dakota
Iowa
Illinois
Indiana
Ohio
West Virginia
Pennsylvania
Maryland
Delaware
Virginia
North Carolina
South Carolina
Georgia
Tennessee
Arkansas
Louisiana
Texas
Mexico
New Mexico
Arizona
New Mexico
Texas
Oklahoma
Colorado
Kansas
Nebraska
Iowa
Minnesota
Wisconsin
Illinois
Missouri
Indiana
Kentucky
West Virginia
Pennsylvania
Delaware
New Jersey
Maryland
DC
Virginia
North Carolina
Kentucky
Tennessee
Alabama
Mississippi
Arkansas
Missouri
Arkansas
Texas
Oklahoma
New Mexico
Arizona

Nice little run-around eh?  It was roughly 18,000 miles a shot.  I was very pleased with the way the bike held up, in fact not a thing went wrong unless I made it go wrong with my tinkering.  I do have a knocking in my lifters but I think it might just be cheap gas – whenever I add Sea Foam it goes away.  I wanted to rake out the front end this winter while I’m home, but that’s a $1000 project which I just don’t have the spare cash for.  Oh well.  Still hoping one of the bike makers will come through but I’m not holding my breath.  I mean, can you think of a better road test for your bike than one of my road trips??  Everywhere I stop people ask about the bike & the customizing that I’ve done…

Above & beyond list this year… I want to thank Ed at Team Apache in Mesa, AZ for letting me call & pick his brain a little while I was on the road.  There was also a place called Golf Carts for Fun in Aubrey, TX who took the time to try & fit my trailer with new tires.   There was an Auto Zone near Bristol, VA who set me up & let me change my oil in the parking lot (the entire year I used Mobile-One 20/50 synthetic oil and Mobile-One filters so I didn’t have to go searching for a motorcycle shop).  And there was Karen who kept my equipment safe, and Tom in PA who showed me some cool places – including a shop to buy heavy leather gloves that I needed for $3… I bought an extra pair.  Oh yeah, and Sunrise Honda in Searcy, AR who cleaned up my wiring and did a flawless job of hooking up my trailer.

Enough for today.

Yesterday is the past, today is the future.  Things can change in the blink of an eye.

I’ve been giving some thought to going to Bob’s hall of fame ceremony in Omaha this month.  Of anyone up there, they deserve it most.  For some 15-yrs Tight Fit played anywhere from 200 to 300 shows a year all over the country … definitely the hardest working band ever to come out of the Omaha area.

I haven’t been to an awards ceremony since the ‘80s; you might say I grew out of it.  I do miss the yearly MTV & Grammy invites though, it let me know I was remembered.  So should I go to Omaha to see people who won’t remember me for an award that had little to nothing to do with me?

It seems to be important to Bob that I be there.  Despite the fact I have to get limb pullers to get him to help me with anything, he is one of my oldest and best of friends.  In this business when you disappear for a while, you’re usually forgotten and have to start over, it can be depressing.  I should show some support.

If I do that then I’ll also head to Arkansas to pick up a camper/trailer for the bike. It’s relatively big & awkward looking, but at least the bike won’t look like the Grinch’s sled anymore.  I’m also still booked for 2 shows in the South… I should be able to pull that off.  Maybe cut myself off from the world & spend a couple weeks in the gulf.

Come October it’s time for my med follow-ups and get that surgery done on my hand.  Needless to say I won’t have much to talk about, but hopefully I can focus on studio work and get these 2 unfinished CD’s out the door.  Mostly it feels like no one wants to work with me; if I have to beg its not worth it.  Actually, if I have to ask its really not worth it either.

If I focus I can play all the instruments.  It won’t be great but it’ll be done … and getting these done – good or bad – will make me feel better.  On the other hand if I got out of here, problem solved.  People all over the world contact me about helping them or them helping me.  Only one person in Arizona has.  Ever.

I blew out my voice during a show a couple years ago; and for about 6-months I could not hold a note.  A few months later Ghetto from One Dollar Death showed up at my door with his equipment & said we were going to work on my next release.  I found out my voice came back (in some ways better) but my confidence still hasn’t, ‘cause I had told myself it was over.  Once something like that is in your head, its hard to get out – ya know?  I guess that’s why I go through so many ups & downs now, when something goes wrong it reminds me of all the times I had to quit when I didn’t want to. 

I know, I’m sure you’d rather hear: “Wow I rocked a sold-out stadium, trashed a hotel and off to the next town. I’m king of the world!”.  Tough.  If that’s the way I felt I sure as hell wouldn’t be writing anything now would I.  I don’t like talking about myself, but you can only do so much promotional crap before it starts looking pathetic.  So here I am, from me to you.  The good & the bad.

People know me by different names; and I’ve always liked that… it kept them out of my business.  But as I get older it gets harder to change character at the drop of a hat.  Fact is, I don’t want to anymore, but I don’t want to put it all together either.  There’s a lot of people out there who remember me by whatever; I shouldn’t have to explain it to the others right?

I have a lot to think about on this next trip, its what this whole summer was supposed to be about before it got ripped out from under me.  I agree it’s petty and insignificant in the scheme of things; but if you’re not right with yourself, you’re no good to anyone else.

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Took a leisurely day trip to Winslow, AZ on Monday.  Lynda wanted to try a road trip, so a run to the mountains turned into a 400 mile cruise.  More than she bargained for I’m sure, but it was a nice ride straight up Hwy 87.  When we got there a group of Swedish-speaking Harley riders with Illinois license plates were gathered in town.  It was my guess that they were following Route 66 from end to end.  Now that would be a ride to talk about!

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The way back was interesting.  On some maps there is a Hwy 99 that heads to Hwy 260 by Heber, AZ.  On those maps its portrayed as a finished road… well the first 30 miles or so it was.  A beautiful empty road through the middle of open range.  You felt so far into the middle of nowhere that I started thinking about the bike and what a lousy place it would be to get a flat 🙂  I think we saw 2 cars in the entire stretch.

But it didn’t last – a dirt road appeared without warning and ran all through the forest.  It wasn’t bad as dirt roads go, but the bumps were enough that I had to go so slow it took a couple hours to do that last 25 miles.  We left Phoenix in the 8 am hour and got back in the 9 pm hour – drop an hour for dinner in Payson where a couple, in their 70’s or 80’s, thought I was a celebrity.  I could see in there eyes they were going to think about that for days.  Anyway …

But it was along the Rim and I saw some great places to go camping, and the scenery was beautiful, so it was well worth the exploration.  I know I’ve been there before, but for some reason it all looked new to me.

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One thing it did accomplished was putting me back into “road mode”.  My hand is doing well enough that I can get back out and do some more of this tour; but my guitar is sitting in Arkansas waiting for me, but I can also pick up a trailer there once I put a hitch on the bike.  I also have some miscellaneous equipment that KarenLee is holding onto for me.

Ok, off the subject, I do have a question.  Why is it that a pickup truck and trailer of anything makes people feel invincible?  I saw 2 or 3 near accidents happen just because somebody wanted to be first in line.  Doing 80mph on 45mph curves is not always the smartest thing, particularly with a top-heavy vehicle pulling a trailer, ya know?  I found myself hoping they would tip over (but glad they didn’t, it would have been a mess for the rest of us).

Like I tell ya, the road never ends.

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This fix on my hand seems to be doing the trick, and not a moment too soon – here come the monsoons.

What they did was to pull my thumb out of socket & stuck a needle in with a shot of something or other which is suppose to last up to 6-months.  It won’t, but it should buy me at least 2 or 3.  Talk about painful!  But I’m rough, I’m tough 🙂

The surgery they have to do is a 4-month recovery, not 4-weeks like I thought; so I figure I can hole up for the winter & I’ll be ready for next season – and better organized.  Meanwhile, I’ll be in & out of Arizona for the next couple of months with my standby touring that has kept me in the loop the past couple of years… but I’ll also take a good look at taking advantage of some of the acting & other opportunities I’ve been passing on.  The only outfit I can think of that’s capable of taking care of me properly is William-Morris Agency, but its been a lot of years since I’ve been in touch with them.  Anyone have any other ideas?

Hey, make me an offer I can’t refuse!  I’m game for something new, I’ll even lift my 20+ year boycott on Arizona for a few days if I have to.  Minus a couple articles I’ve just come across, the new press kit is finished and I’m feeling good about it for a change.  I do need to get back to Arkansas before I settle in for the winter and there’s plenty of places in that neighborhood wanting me to show up, so the year won’t be a complete bust.  I also need to line up some charity work to keep me occupied.

Which shifts me into biker mode.  I’ve already put on 9000 miles which is 5-times more than anyone else I know will put on in the entire year.  I should have another 5000 down easy before I’m done.  No where near what the year could have brought, but oh well.  Someone ought to tell Jay Leno that I’ll give him lessons – for a price.  The bike is running beautifully and that cheap-ass (Dunlop) front tire I had to buy has shocked the hell out of my service guys – it should be ready to be replaced but it barely looks touched.  Shows how much weight I’ve been carrying on the back.  But they have a special category for me called “things we’ve never seen before”.  In my opinion those bike makers that passed on sponsorship really screwed up.

For those of you who haven’t kept track of me the past few years I’ll bring you up to speed;  I don’t have tattoos (don’t understand the appeal), I dress the same every day as I do on stage (you can imagine the looks I get), I haven’t had anything to do with bike “clubs” since I was a teenager (seems like a hassle), and I don’t have any tolerance or respect for anyone who sticks their nose in the air… they will never see what I have.

Sounding full of myself? :)  Yeah, well, I’m tired of the bullshit; I don’t need it and finally letting it go was what I needed to do to move on.  On the other hand, I’m a blonde musician on drugs.  Hell, my IQ dropped 20 points just typing that.  Settle down, they’re prescriptions, I have a messed-up back, remember? 

The support you folks have shown me the past few weeks have given me a boost like never before.  You’ve been patiently following the ups & downs of an old fart on a mission and have read things I’ve been embarrassed to tell… as you’ve seen from the deletions.

You haven’t let me down and I won’t let you down … I know that Everything is possible.

Onward!

I’ve been noticing something lately … well, I always have, it’s just making another pass through my mind…

Unless its’ the only place you want to be known in, people are rarely accepted in the place where they live even though they may be well known elsewhere.  So why do you suppose that is?

Anyway… I go to a surgeon next week about my hand.  I don’t pretend to know anything about x-rays & stuff, but there is something strange to the side of my thumb so we’ll see what the new Doc has to say about it.  For any kind of surgery it may take 4-6 weeks before I have unrestricted use so I need to figure out what I’m going to do with my time.

I was all pumped for this year too.  You know I wouldn’t have done this blog & stuff unless I was expecting the out-of-the-ordinary.

Hmmm. Might be a good time to break in a band.  Don’t “need” to write any songs, I have dozens of unreleased songs already.  Could go out & meet some locals; I haven’t been involved in the local scene since, well, the 80’s.  But I guess as far as MLA Records goes, a little PR might be something I should do.

I also need to talk to Agent types.  Not just music, but acting and general appearances as well.  Yeah, there’s actually a lot I need to get done.  I’m the type who’s busy as all get-out on the road, but when I’m home I become anti-social and stick close to home.  I guess its because the people around me don’t push me on to excel, so I relax.  Couple that with no great need to impress anyone and my tolerance for the bullshit becomes null.  I’ll work on that.

There are also a couple interviews I’ve been putting off.  That might be an excellent place to start.

But We did start something here, so I’ll keep writing if you’ll keep reading; just to let you know how things are progressing.  Maybe doing this will give me the push I need.  And, hey, if you have any ideas, I’m open to them.

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Meanwhile, go to Reverbnation/walkercaine or the walkercaine.com website and listen to a couple tunes.  Once in a while I do a free download just to see if people are paying attention 😉

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I made back into Phoenix; albeit it was the toughest part of the entire trip.  It just seems like forever going in & out of the desert.

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The Ozarks are beautiful.  If you’re a biker-type with a few days on your hands, I highly recommend a visit.  But I had a shot through tornado alley between two storms headed for each other … so I took it.

Heading out of Arkansas through Oklahoma was a nice ride.  All of OK was overcast and the air was perfect.. although OKC seriously needs some road work in spots.  I’ve been kinda paying attention to that … so far the worse City roads are in Omaha.  The worse Interstate roads are Ohio, Indiana, and New Mexico – in that order.  Oklahoma wasn’t exactly a joy either.  The worse Highway roads belong to… no one.  They were all as good or better than you would expect.  Now the best City roads was the Wilmington area – I didn’t venture into very many major cities.  The best Interstates were Virginia and Tennessee.  The best Highways were Pennsylvania, Maryland, Arkansas, and maybe New Mexico.

The stupidest interchange was in Baltimore at I-695 to I-95.  What are you people thinking bringing all that traffic into one lane??  Road construction was scattered along the trail, but it wasn’t a hassle at all; in fact everywhere they were kind enough to post signs specifically for bikers warning of grooved pavement, rough road, and fresh oil.  Well, until I got to Arizona… they seem to think a sharp pavement edge & slick oil is a nice trick to play.

I’m rambling now aren’t I … 

Ok, I landed in a little spot called Clinton, OK.  Looked like a nice place.  I ran into a young kid who had his finger on the pulse of every small town west of Oklahoma City.  Very much an up & coming promoter type which he claimed he wasn’t, so I encouraged him that he should be :)  I learned more about what was going on in the Oklahoma entertainment world from him in 30-minutes than all the contacts & internet searches combined.  He even told me where I was supposed to play next month.  Anyway, apparently Elvis Presley had a jones for this place and “owned” a room in one of the local hotels – which to this day will not allow anyone else to stay in.  I thought that was a cool little piece of trivia.

The next morning was fog and a nice ride it was too.  Right about Texas it ended – because the winds were blowing it away.  Let me tell ya, that ride through New Mexico was a killer.  Some places the winds & gusts were so bad I had to putter along at 40 just to keep my center of gravity; I swear those wheels left the pavement with one of the gusts.  It took me all flippin day to get through there, But… Ft. Sumner is having their western days :)  It’s a nice little town, been through there many times.  Official home of Billy the Kid’s grave.  Some pretty women in that town too.  Oh, and there was another place, I can’t remember, every time I turned around there was some knockout walking by, I couldn’t believe it.  Yeah, yeah.  Hey, I’m I guy, you’d have to be dead not to notice sometimes.

I stopped in Magdalena for the night; I wanted to keep going but the wind was getting worse.  It might not have been so bad but there was a bit of traffic along that stretch and a slow motorcycle on a very dark highway could get hit.  If not for the wind I bet I could have done that Iron Butt ride pretty easily, I had enough on my mind to keep me occupied for hours.  Besides, US60 in Arizona is a really nice ride for the most part, especially Show Low to Superior.  Best seen in daylight.

Looking at this, I’m really not saying anything am I … and trying real hard not to talk about ‘now’.  Looks like something out of a travel guide. LOL

I haven’t cancelled “everything”, yet.  If I can get my act together I might still get back out on the road.  Out in the eastern States my back was feeling better but my hand & arm were a problem; here my hand’s not so bad but my back is giving me pain.  Go figure.  And I’m getting to spend some time with Alyssa while the little one is at Girl Scout Camp.  We used to do everything together, but with college & all I don’t see much of her.  

Such a drag.  What’s that they say about the best laid plans?  It’ll work out, it always does one way or another, it’s just that I hate it when things get screwed up. 

Maybe I need to stick to a band so all I have to do is stumble around & sing :)   I think about dropping out again, but my alter-ego just got nominated for some award.  As any recluse will tell you, nomination ain’t winning.  Let me know how it turns out.

Our adventure may not be over yet folks, just detoured for a bit.

 

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