The Thoughts of Tony

Coronavirus and the Greed of Festival Organizers 

Indepedent musicians are taking a big hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Many of us rely on live shows and festivals to make their living and when these get cancelled, they are getting hung out to dry since their contracts don't cover cancellation due to infectious disease. With SXSW, Ultra and other festivals getting cancelled I was wondering, what about the fans? How are they affected when the festival is cancelled? 

Turns out, the fine print in most of the ticket insurance policies is just like the musicians' contracts. They do not cover infectious disease as a reason for cancelling. So get this. The festivals who sold all the tickets are currently keeping all the submission fees from the musicians who want to play and all the ticket sales from all the fans who wanted to go the festival with no guarantee that the show will be re-scheduled. We are all just out of luck until they grow a heart and do the right thing.

Fighting Through The Pain 


I've been holding this back from everyone and it's time I let everyone know. The last few days have been particulary rough for me. These ailments have been my motivation to create my music and  show everyone my story of pushing through it all. Let me explain: 

I have multiple ailments plaguing me. I played sports growing up and they changed my life forever in both a positive and negative way. Today, I must explain the negative side of my experiences 

When I played baseball, we had an offseason conditioning program where all the guys showed off and lifted weights as heavy as we could. One day I was maxing out at 405 lbs and I tweaked my hip. My hip has never been the same. To this day, my hip randomly flares up causing severe pain where it hurts for me to walk around. Unfortunately, the past few days my hip has been aggravated again. 

I played baseball from a young age all the way up until high school. I played positions that had high stress throws: catcher, pitcher, third base, centerfield. By the time my senior season had rolled around, I had developed a bad case of tendinosis in my shoulder. Recently, I learned that my tendinosis has caused a bone spur to develop. Nowadays, I can't throw a ball without pain. Heavy guitar strumming and slap bass also particular aggravate it. 

Now let's move on to football. I only played organized football for two years, but this did the most damage to my life. My first injury occurred making a tackle. I had grabbed onto the jersey of a running quarterback just as the  quarterback made a cut causing my wrist to pull a way it shouldn't. This caused the cartilage in my wrist to severely damaged. I had to have surgery on this wrist and to this day it hasn't been the same. This is my guitar strumming hand and it just doesn't have the flexibility it used to. My wrist is also susceptive to locking up. I also have to limit harsh impacts like slap bass. 

My second injury from football was caused from my big toe bending to the top of my foot while making a tackle. I was diagnosed with turf toe, went through rehab and cortisone shots but once again my foot was never the same again. I have had to wear special soles ever since and my foot hurts every day while I walk on it. 

Finally, let's discuss my most severe injury of all. A day after a football game, my neck and middle back were feeling particulary terrible. I didn't know any better and thought that this was just how you normally felt after a physical game. From that point on in my life my neck or middle back would seem to randomly flare up, especially after physical activity such as running or lifting weights. I had a terrible flare up last year and had to get an MRI done to find out what was wrong. Turns out, I have multiple herniated discs in my cervical and thoracic spine causing pinched nerves to radiate pain. Unfortunately, this is a permanent injury where the treatment options are limited, risky and have mixed results in terms of success. I have had to completely change my life to manage this issue and for the most part I can keep my pain level down. Some days however, I just wake up miserable. 

Since I was 16, there hasn't been a day in my life where I didn't feel pain. It has just been a matter of how bad I am feeling day in day out. The reason I am telling you this is, no matter the pain I'm feeling, I don't let that stop me from living my life and doing what I love. I realize I am lucky to be alive and able to play music as others aren't so lucky.

I started my original music journey to inspire others to be the best person they can be no matter the circumstances. Life throws obstacles at us and some of us have more obstacles than others. But the obstacles don't matter. We can't let anything bring us down and we must perservere. My mission is motivation and my music is my vehicle. Follow me on my journey to make everyone the best they can be!