We have an estimated 5PM departure time this afternoon; Mr. Patrick J. Miller & I, as we head north to the turf of our youth, Central Illinois. We'll be detouring just enough to catch former Hanoi Rocks frontman Michael Monroe's solo set at Fubar in St. Louis en route. With things getting a little busier for fORMER, there's a brief window of opportunity to catch up with family & business back home for a few days, before turning around and heading right back on Saturday. Unfortunately, this trek means missing both the Belle Brigade and The Civil Wars shows in Nashville this week, but The Midwest beckons, and we must heed the call.

Once in Pekin, I'll have a few days to catch up at my shop, and also knock out a set of acoustic numbers at The Red Barn in Peoria on Friday...possibly joined by Mr. Miller, if he's not too busy. I've fielded a few requests, and I'll try to honor them as best I can in my allotted time frame. Not being a player of the virtuosic variety, please don't spring anything too demanding on me last-minute, as that will only result in inevitable discomfort for everyone involved, trust me. I AM going to do a few tunes that have never been played live, and maybe try out some fORMER stuff that might make the next record, if we can outrun the coming rapture, of course. So, pencil it in, THIS Friday, the 14th, Red there. I have no idea when I'll make it back up for another one of these, and I'd really like to catch up with a few folks I haven't seen in a while.

Waiting for us in Nashville will be a mess of songs to go over for our first Kentucky show in over 2 years. That's right, we're returning to Bowling Green to headline the great Tidball's on Saturday, November 5th. The Plastic Friends will open the show around 10, and by the time we take the stage, sometime just before midnight, we will have roughly 25 songs at our disposal, including the return of the long lost Day 22, revived via birthday request for one Miki Ernst. This song has NEVER been played by this lineup, and hasn't been played live by ANY fORMER lineup since 2007, so if Miki isn't feeling the love, he's got no heart. The reasons for this songs absence in the set has never been quite clear, with blame commonly placed on a variety of individuals named Billy, but I have to admit, I've kinda missed playing the riffs, and I'm actually pretty excited to bring this one back into the fold.

Before we can get lucky in Kentucky however, I have to shift gears, and briefly resume my role as an auxiliary Beauty School Dropout to support Bush at the Haunted Valley Block Party. We're headlining the indoor stage, right before Bush goes on outside, and tickets go on sale tomorrow. There are a bunch of bands on the bill...Five Knives, Strike First, Scarletta, and more...and it kicks off early, like around 7PM. Of course, costumes will be the order of business, so look for me as Gwen Stefani. Hopefully P90X will have my abs in shape in time for the midriff shirt I picked out.

In other news of late, I've been working with my buddy Adam McCants on a writing/recording project that will lean heavily on the 80s-pop that we both admire, and we're almost 2 songs into that fact, I may test one of those at this weekends acoustic show. We're not really sure what we're going to do with this stuff yet, but the experiment has proven successful thus far, so forward it is.

I'm also waiting on Joshua Ketchmark to decide when he wants to start round 2 of recording for his latest record. There are 5 rather elaborate demos simmering, in need of the full studio treatment from the qualified professionals that brought round 1 to life. This could possibly happen by the end of the year.....if not, maybe we'll start a new fORMER record. There is no shortage of material ready to go, but these boxes full of "The Kids Deserve Cable" CDs seem to indicate a pressing need to get out and play/sell/rinse/ least for a few months, THEN get down to business on LP #3. That is, unless everybody wants to buy 2 or 3 extra, then we'll skip ahead.....let me know.

The Bombshell Crush master sounds amazing, and some of the artwork is done. We have yet to settle on a title or image for the cover. Hopefully one will come along and inspire the other, so we can get this thing wrapped up, and one step closer to release.

Well, I think that's about it for now...oh yeah, just lined up a December 3rd show in town, and no, it's not opening for Framing Hanley, although they will be playing a few blocks away that mark your calendars. This may be it for us in Nashville until 2012, and if that is indeed the case, we'll have to make it count.

Plenty to talk about later....I'll get back to you in a week or so,