I was "stricken" with another birthday last Sunday. I don't really think it's that bad creeping closer to 40, but I have been thinking about a few things in a dim, nostalgic light for a couple days.

I decided to start the laborious task of ripping all my CDs and stowing them away in boxes. It is no coincidence considering the nostalgia kick that the first stack contained recordings from a long since forgotten Denton, TX band called Mandarin that I was in from 1998-2005. It's a reminder that I have been running into musical brick walls for nearly 15 years now (more like 20). On one hand, I look back and shake my head at some of the decisions we made along the way, on the other I remember a great time in my life with great friends with a collective purpose (albeit at times totally botched and improperly handled).  I had a tough time coming to terms with how this band ended- I felt much to blame for this.  Let's just say it was an "artistic differences" type of thing.  I spent years dwelling on those times around 2005-2006...
But the world didn't end.  In many instances, I kept in contact with those old friends.

back in the Fast>Future>Present days

I had a coworker come up to my desk this morning and look at these CDs while I was ripping them for this post-
"hey, these are all your old band?"
"yeah it is" he then asked "did you guys SELL?"
"I'm not sure how many we sold" - "so you guys didn't MAKE ANY MONEY then???"
"Not really" and then he put them down and said "hmm."

towtruck stranded in Illinois

I'm positive we didn't make any money, we spent/lost more than we ever made. Maybe it was a little bit more difficult to tell if an album was even being heard back then, especially with the types of record deals we had... I think we had a touch of entitlement and really believed we should have been more recognized than we were, but does it really matter?

My sister recently told me that music is "my hobby"- I don't exactly agree, but she is on to something here.  What has it all been for? Personal sanity or insanity? Perhaps it's simply the "need" to create. To stay perpetually broke? Was it for the free drinks? Obviously not success or fame or money.

I was planning on posting all of the recorded material I could find but I felt like the first album didn't stand the test of time to my ears very well at all...  It has its moments, but I think that one should just hang around in the ether out there by itself... maybe sometime I'll get around to posting it someday.  or not.

So I need to take some photos or find some images... but here's some links.