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7 Sep 2010 evilrobots »
生与死


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08063211
dancerinmaya 发表于:05-01-13 02:29 [只看该作者]


12月30日晚,收到海俊的电话口信,她心情沉重,说我们三班的薛雨
华去年在美国自杀了。那天听到留言时已倦极,又在和朋友吃饭时喝
了些许啤酒,完全无法进行正常交谈,不在回她电话的状态,给她写
了个电邮,就去了无思无乐无忧的梦乡。其实至今都没回她那个电
话,只因雨华之去一直沉甸甸的坐在我心里。


虽明白我们每一个人都会以一生谱写自己独特的乐章,雨华的乐章或
许有必要在她37岁时划上句号,震撼还是无法描述。虽然我猜测有人
已知她离去的消息,但从来每人说过。这一震撼到今日,终于要忆一
忆雨华。


薛雨华,1966年生人,属马,无锡洛社人,高1.58米。面容姣好恬
美,身材匀称苗条,舞姿妙曼,歌喉甜美,那时引三班无数男生竟折
腰,也深得所有老师的青睐。写的一手好文好诗,常常被刘春华老师
当作范文朗读,以训示我们这帮不开窍的家伙们。讲演起来如大将临
风,善长所有运动,加之跑步飞快,姿势优美如骏马奔腾。再加上英
文口语笔试俱佳,汪老师看到她也总是合不拢嘴。


我们三班刚来南师附中时,共8个女生,和高我们一级的外地女生一
起共28人被“隔离”在“城堡”的二楼,以便管理。她的床在我隔壁,我
们起初有年余形影不离,吃饭,上课,打开水,上体育活动。记得初
识不久,她偷偷告诉我她的梦想是做个电影明星。她拿出一张一寸的
小照片,那时算是高级的艺术照了--照片上她斜斜的身子,很甜美的
笑着。她说她的老师托人将那相片拿去上影厂给人看了,反馈是她很
甜,她依是带着期待,并未放弃明星梦。那时正是“小花”和陈冲红到
透亮之时,电影和电影明星是大于人生的东西。我们很认真地讨论如
果上影厂来找她的话,她要不要放弃学业,因她一直都是品学兼优的
好学生。


后来她家人来看她,我才发觉她的美并非来自遗传,她只是独自的美
着,好像造物主在创她时格外的尽心尽力,相比之下我们其他人尤其
是我是造物主赶“死期”时随便交差了事的作品。我从那时便认定了她
是个“尤物”。她的性格也是有着比较典型的江南水乡女儿的细腻和精
致,小处和大处无一不是面面具到,体现在钱上时会被我无情的讥笑
--我生于长于刘邦骑王八去偷狗肉吃,并被乾隆皇帝贬为“穷山恶
水,泼妇刁民”之乡的苏北--彪悍是民风,粗犷是气派。后来有一次
刘春华老师在语文课上“异想天开”地要我们写诗(“异想天开”是因为
高考不会考诗--但如今因刘老师的诸多“异想天开”而对他感恩不
已),我热情汹涌澎湃地从甲午战争到中国人民站起来了,洋洋洒
洒,纵横千年,战争和历史,写了好多页(有谁知欲罢不能的苦
楚?),得了95分。雨华写了一段火车上的故事,被刘老师拿来做范
“诗”读给大家听,风格是灵秀的江南烟雨。。。记得其中一句,“逗
笑了邻座的俏闺女。。。”,后来才知道雨华的诗只拿了 85分,但至
今都清楚地记得刘老师读那诗时陶醉的神情。 从那时起,雨华在我
心中就是哪个”俏闺女“。


雨华来自无锡,底子好,人灵秀,按我的懒人之理,应轻轻松松地上
学,可能她的细腻使她永远想精益求精,用功得厉害。我因上学早,
比同班人都小,比较懵懂,又非常贪玩,学习上觉得差不多就去玩
了,从来不想精益求精,再加上从来都不是老师的红人,从无有关谁
谁谁的内幕消息,还有就是年少时比较不敏感,故对周围发生什么完
全没有概念,许多事情都是稀里糊涂的混过去了。那时我并不知道班
上原来也有排名次,前些日子见到三班的苏明才知道一些同学之间竟
争加政治,搞得还有点儿气氛--现在看来,无知者无畏,真的也是一
种福气。


跟她形影不离的日子里,有时也逼得我不得不温书,当然也不乏找借
口自己去玩的时候,留下她一个人用功。记得一次汪老师说第二天要
默英文单词,雨华拉了我记单词,看了几遍我已没有耐心,而雨华不
厌其烦,坚持要彻底记住,我只好耐住性子和她一起温习--第二天成
绩出来,我得分比她高,对我来说是个侥幸,因我初中英文只学完了
4册(而不是六册),对细腻的她来说是个打击。这样忆起来,性格
真真决定命运--她的细腻,定使她经历了比别人更多的苦痛。


性格上的不同,加上我的懵懂和粗鲁,我们慢慢的走了不同的路。不
记得为什么闹别扭的了,后来我们不说话,然后我把蚊帐的嘴支去了
另一边,背对着雨华--刘老师很严肃的将我拉到操场边上(那时我还
有点受宠若惊,因刘老师从来不找我说话的),一脸郑重语气严重地
要我以后无论何事发生要从好处去想别人,那怕是矫枉过正,你和人
家什么仇,一定要搞成这样,那时我不懂(真的不懂他的意思),现
在想起来他老人家可能还有点的隐台词没好意思说-- 其实他照直说
了我可能一样是不明白,我那时可能真的是个麻烦,还和三班一个女
生打过架,当然单纯的到愚钝程度的我并不明白为什么还没问我为
啥,老师已经一定认为是我的不对,我也并不明白哪个女生已经去老
师那儿倾诉过了,而老师觉得已从她那儿得到故事的”正本"”全传“,
但不管怎么说我都是个黑羊--但值得他老人家欣慰的是他未完成的”
矫枉“事业,生活这个炼狱已替他便本加厉的作了。


后来我去了文科班,就没再和雨华联系过。听说她高考没考出水准,
她的理科总分大概和我的文科成绩差不多,原因是她太紧张。听说她
去了清华的科技英语专业。后来又听说她嫁了个山东人,她的同学,
那时觉得有意思,因她那时常常是对北方人略有微词,因北方人的粗
和憨,在和她交往时,我常因她的崇上海和崇洋而取笑她,虽然后来
我自己先后去了上海和美国 (人生真是有意思)。


雨华在班里的威信是毋庸置疑的。那时刘老师的另一异想天开是要我
们学唱歌。雨华是文娱委员,故重任在肩。因高考无音乐科,男生们
(那时我们只剩下了6个女生)掂着高考,阳奉阴违。雨华板下她矫
美的脸,晓之以理地“诱导”了男生一下,我从来没见过那帮穿土色老
鼠皮校服的男生们那么老实过。我想他们都是极之尊重她的(爱慕之
外)。


雨华她德容才貌俱备,兼深得身边人的宠爱,爱慕和尊敬,我一直都
觉得在她面前是丑且钝的小鸭。如宝玉说的,她是水做的,而我是泥
巴做的。那么一个精致的可人儿,我想爱她的人多而又多,我虽多年
与她音信杳杳,我也自认是她的倾慕者之一。她选择离开爱她的人而
去,一定因为她认为那是在那时她最好的选择,也一定因为她生命中
有她细致的心所不能再承受的苦痛。而终结自己的生命需要何等的勇
气和力量阿。


每个人的生命不同,有的人注定要在漫长的日子里体验,感受这人世
间的恒久苦痛和短暂欢乐,心一次一次地裂开,以使灵性得以感动他
们,以无比的柔韧和耐心,见证苦难中不尽的美,见证这颗心大到可
盛下无尽的哀伤和慈悲。有的人的生命如昙花,如流星,虽短却美得
让人不忍,雨华的生命,大致是后一种。而我们活下去的人,感谢她
又一次让我们的心裂开,又一次体验到生命的悲痛和无常,和那中的
美,也愿她平安去了她的灵肉得可安歇的地方,那里不再有苦痛,不
再有烦恼,只有一个江南俏闺女的甜美的笑靥。


以志雨华。



第2楼


感谢叶平终于打破了这个沉默。


去年底放假在家,给3班的在凤凰城的李国华打了个电话,问起了薛
雨华,因为她是3班同学中我印象最深的一个。3班是个特殊的群体,
和其他班的交往很少。他们的考高中数学卷子曾难倒绝大多数当时初
三的附中在校生,说他们是才子才女不过分。薛雨华是这一群才子才
女中最活跃的一个,有时私下会妒嫉,如何造物者可以这样偏心。


满心以为可以从李国华那里得到薛雨华的通讯地址,然后发个邀请加
入组织,也许不久后可以在网上一睹芳容了。可是李的回答大大地出
乎意料--她不在了!2003年她自杀了。凤凰城的报纸登过新闻,但她
的名字已不为旧友所认识--Juia, 姓是她前美国丈夫的姓。3班也只
有少数人知道。李参加了她的葬礼。


我当晚很压抑,第二天一早想找人倾诉,给叶平拨电话,不通,就发
email.后来又与几个附中的密友谈起此事,但始终不愿也不敢在网上
公布,始终不愿相信这是真的。元旦后给汪老师发了个email, 略提
此事。后来听汪师母说汪老师很痛心惋惜。


我们又何尝不是?但我始终不苟同她的选择--这个选择太自私了。我
们每个人的生命其实不光属于我们自己。扔下年迈的夫母,让白头人
送黑头人,为不孝;离开自己所爱的和所有爱自己的人,让他们沉浸
在悲痛中,为不义。怎能自己说走就走呢? 人来到世上一定会有磨
难,早晚而已,生命也因此而更具魅力。如星光闪耀的人必竟极少,
绝大多数的人生是平平淡淡,却真真实实的。每个四季轮回都不同,
每天的太阳也不一样,每时每刻身边都有不同的故事,一颗细致的心
是不难体会生命的美好的。


说什么都太晚了, 对一个已去了的人再这样批评,实在过分。愿她
在另一个世界里安宁。



我的家
08063211
dancerinmaya 发表于:05-01-14 00:53 [只看该作者]
第3楼
试验


补充日期: 2005-01-14 00:55:09


写了个长长的贴,被系统踢掉了,晚了,累了,下次再补吧


补充日期: 2005-01-15 01:21:28


亲爱的海俊


我深深地感受到你对雨华之选择的痛惜和慈悲。可也希望你能从生命
的另一个层面理解接纳并庆贺她的选择。


如你能够,暂且将你的哀痛和“假如”放在一边,念一下雨华的心路历
程。虽不知引发她离去的事件或一系列事件是什么,其实可以想象她
所经历的悲痛和绝望,那种黑暗如同汪洋大海,看不到一点希望,看
不到彼岸,看不到救赎,也没有任何牵挂可以再留她于这个世界。
你必须相信如果她那时还能够支撑下去,一定不会去的--结束自己生
命所需要的勇气和力量远远超出一般人的想象。那个时候对她来说最
美好的就是从那黑暗和绝望中解脱出来,那种愿望远远强过了对死亡
的强烈恐惧。


我们不可以将自己的判断加于任何一个其他的生命:诚然,如果从一
个“第三人”的角度来说,雨华从很多意义上都被上天情有独钟,实话
说我如果有她才能的百分之一作梦也会笑醒过来,然而假设的“第三
人”不是雨华。我们每一个人都不同,也不须承受她所承受的痛苦,
即使那些苦痛对“第三人” 来说可能不算什么,但她却是在实实在在
地体验着。有一句英文谚语说,“要知一个人的难处,须穿了她的鞋
子走上一哩路”。我们并不知道如果自己有她那样细腻的心思,在她
的境况下会做什么选择。


昙花只绽放瞬间,而菊花可久久地笑傲风刀霜剑。但昙花就是昙花,
不是菊花。如果用菊花的价值观来判断昙花,昙花无疑是是个失败,
如昙花的谢去是昙花的选择,在菊花的价值观下那个选择至少是不明
智的。可我们不能说菊花的生命比昙花更有价值,也不能说昙花应该
像菊花那样生活。


如静心观察一下人生,我们生活中不乏光彩四射的人在生命的巅峰溘
然而逝,如玛丽莲梦露,如张国荣,如薛雨华。这一类人生命的意义
原本就不再活到发苍苍视茫茫,只因他们活的是“永恒青年”的能量,
她们姗姗而来,感动无数生命,倏然而去,又感动无数生命,她们的
人生价值不在于活一个芸芸众生可以接受的生命。生命的神秘也正在此。


虽我自认为是生命力极顽强的“烧不尽”的野草,在我的生命中也多次
经历了绝望的黑暗,在那种绝望之中,为了不再苦痛,死亡之吻所带
来的灵肉可得安歇的甜蜜许诺,极有诱惑。我仍在,只因一来我没有
雨华那种勇气和力量,二来我是注定要在漫长的日子里慢慢地体验感
受和见证人生的无常和痛苦,发掘那之中无限的慈悲和美,并将这种
慈悲和美传播出去。而对人生苦痛和无常之绝望和黑暗的体验,使得
我如今可以“变本加利”地热爱人生,和在人生苦痛和无常中挣扎的同
类(包括自己)。


生老病死,是人生的必经阶段,无常,是人生的真相。我们迟早都会
去的,雨华只是先行了一步。雨华是一朵空谷幽兰,她的生命或许不
像仙人掌那样顽强,可她盛开时以她的美和雅感动了她生命中的每一
个人。我们今日怀念她,她的美丽和光艳不可方物的是我们对她的永
恒回忆。雨华之去,是她生命完美的结局。爱她的我们,可选择接
受,尊敬,并庆贺她的决定。


在苦痛和无常中活下去,是我们的十字架,也是上天给我们的恩赐,
因那苦痛和无常中有无限的慈悲,美,神秘和发现。在念她的震惊和
悲痛之中,活下去的我们可选择将对生命无常和痛苦的体验,化作慈
悲和对生命的无限热爱。欢庆生命的每一刻,充满愉悦地歌唱和舞蹈
着走完这一段路,并将些许慈悲和欢乐,传播给身边的人,方不枉生
命这一礼物。


深爱你的


叶平
13170417
floracao 发表于:07-10-05 10:53 [只看该作者]
第4楼
回复 第3楼 的 dancerinmaya:
昨天偶尔看到你纪念薛雨华的文章,我给你留了几次言都不知所踪,
网页无法显示,今天再作努力。叶平,我想你就是曾经和阿曹同住十
一宿舍的叶平吧?这么多年虽然也听到一些关于你的零星消息,却始
终没有与你接上线。以前是因为我觉得或许你不想与我联系,所以就
没有怎么去努力获取你的联络方式,现在我想或许是我多虑了,我很
想念你,或许你也是想念我的,所以就留言吧。有空回上海,我们见
个面吧。我还在复旦,13301853615;floracao@133sh.com
盼着你能看到这个留言。
13170417
floracao 发表于:07-10-05 11:23 [只看该作者]
第5楼
关于雨华,我也想说两句。这几年回洛社,初中的班主任吴老师提到
好几次说找不到雨华,她的家人也说找不到她,心里就一直有一个担
心。这次十月初中同学毕业后的第一次聚会,在组织过程中才确证了
那个我们都不愿相信的消息。大部分同学都来了,却不见雨华,心中
十分难过。初中一起两年的学习生活,当年懵懵懂懂的我对很多同学
和往事都很模糊,对雨华却有很深的印象。她很漂亮,她和她姐姐的
照片挂在当时镇上唯一一家照相馆的橱窗里,是当年我们这些小丫头
们特别羡慕的。她学习非常出色,好强的她总是要争第一的。课余我
们也经常在一起玩耍,我还去过她的家。那么美好那么优秀的一个
人,多年来一直印在我的记忆深处。现在伊人已去,悲伤之余,我愿
意相信天国就是她向往的归所。愿她在那里无忧无虑无惧,快乐而安宁!


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Lonn Friend Interview - copyover from wayback machine

Lonn Friend

Lonn Friend with Richie Sambora and a Jersey buddy
Lonn Friend is the former editor of the famous American rock/metal magazine RIP. He was also an editor at Hustler magazine and was an A&R man at Arista. He has worked extensively in TV and radio. His entertaining autobiography Life On Planet Rock: From Guns N' Roses To Nirvana, A Backstage Journey Through Rock's Most Debauched Decade was published in 2006 via Portrait. More information can be found at www.myspace.com/lonnsworld



How did you become a music writer in the first place?

Early Flynt days, ’82, Althea asked me to start a music column for Hustler’s sister publication, CHIC. I called it Music Notes and wrote bits and reviews. Madonna and Motley Crue items. But I was never a critic. I always preferred writing about what I experienced personally. So my pen evolved from porn to metal to metaphysical online journals and blogs. I loved writing essays in high school and college. And x-rated fare never intimidated me. Evaluating hardcore came naturally. I think that’s why finding Henry Miller in 2002 was nothing short of life altering. The length of breadth of Miller’s voice, sight and authenticity cannot be overstated. Misfits, rebels, they have always inspired me. Having Larry and Althea Flynt as early mentors, I was doomed!



When was your first introduction to rock music?

After seeing The Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show, I bought my first record. Meet the Beatles. I was seven. Some roll their peepers when I recall with precision that Sunday evening with my four-year-old brother on the floor of our duplex apartment in Sherman Oaks, California. The earth went off its axis the minute America saw John, Paul, George and Ringo and a television studio filled with maniacal teenage girls. As the next ten years passed, I was a serious student during the day but a hopeless, self-sequestered music nerd by night. I listened to everything, pop, Motown, the Brits like The Kinks, Pink Floyd, The Stones, how you can name names? It was the ‘60s and ‘70s, the greatest two decades in the history of contemporary music. I had an air guitar in my hands for hours shredding Blue Oyster Cult, Alice Cooper, and Lou Reed. Those pre-pubescent days set the path of not just my career but my life. I didn’t call the chapter in my book, ‘Chicken Soup For The Rubber Soul,’ for shits and giggles.



You edited the famous RIP magazine in the eighties and nineties. Can you give me a brief story on the creation of the magazine?

It’s well documented in my memoir but in a nutshell, I was near the top of the men’s mag editorial food chain in 1987, heading out at night to the Sunset Strip with the porn folks and local rock freaks. They were gravitating my way naturally and I went where that river was taking me. A scene was start with Quiet Riot, Ratt and Motley. Then GN’R came along and the video of Axl stepping off the bus, the brave seeker abandoning his one horse roots to taste the toxic tid bits of big bad tinsel town. Althea died in July of ’87 and she wanted a rock magazine to succeed at Flynt. I took RIP over in its tenth issue, altered the content from punk and hardcore to reflect the follicle-happy bombastic culture emerging locally, and followed the synchronicity of my staffers being street pals with Guns N’ Roses. RIP was born with GN’R. We had the first interviews with the band. I hired Del James, gave him the title senior editor, and before the ‘Patience’ video was shot, we were family. I did a cameo in the clip and Del put a RIP tee on Axl. And we vigorously embraced the heavier, more molten metal, like Slayer, Megadeth, Voivoid, Death Angel, Testament, When I got the exclusive to cover the making of Metallica’s Black – the only writer/editor in the world permitted monthly visitation to the North Hollywood studio where they were tracking – we were untouchable. Granted the porn connection laid a familiar foundation for the provocative hard rock community. Aerosmith’s management once called me and begged me to stop sending Steven Tyler x-rated videos. I said, sure, until on the set of the ‘Living On The Edge’ video shoot, Steven took me aside and said, “Don’t listen to that shit from management. You keep those tapes coming!” He and I understood each other. Relationships were being developed, friendships that were unique and trusting. I had insane access the other magazine editors couldn’t touch. I never took any of it for granted. I brought the good tales back for the fans. And we all had fun.



Were there any music magazines that inspired you to fulfil your dream (Rolling Stone, Creem, Sounds et al) of writing/editing a magazine?

I didn’t read Stone a lot; occasionally Trouser Press but I’ve never been a big periodical reader of any sort. I didn’t set out to run a magazine. It just happened. I had no game plan and cannot sight inspiration from other pulp sources as the match that lit my professional path 25 years ago. I just followed the flow of things and kept true to my love of music and a strident dedication to the fan. Being one, having a staff and freelance cache of editors, photographers and writers who were also fans, that’s why RIP kicked ass. We mirrored the passions and perversions of our audience.



Can you share some details on the more memorable experiences from your time as RIP’s editor?

The seven anniversary parties were each legend in their own way, starting with the first at the Cathouse where Sly Stone came in hammered out of his mind and took pictures with the Bangles; Axl showing up an hour after the party ended at the Country Club where some years later, Boogie Nights was filmed. “I was recording with Don Henley. Sorry Lonn,” said Axl. The next year he more than made up for it as GN’R played the third RIP party as a warm up for the four mythical Rolling Stones shows at the Coliseum. The Fire Department threw half my guests out at midnight because we were over crowded but a thousand remained in the Park Plaza Hotel upstairs ballroom and they witnessed one of the most incendiary performances of GN’R’s career. Axl stage dove, Mike Monroe did ‘Heartbreak Hotel.’ A couple years later I put together a jam for the ages at the Hollywood Palladium with GN’R, Metallica and Sebastian Bach. They called themselves ‘Gaak,’ and took the stage an hour after Ozzy had smoked ‘War Pigs’ with Faith No More. Bas did an enthusiastic but flawed ‘Whiplash,’ so Hefield took the mike from him and said to the crowd, “I’m gonna do it this time. That other dude fucked it up.” The Seattle Party, however, was the most venerable of all. Pearl Jam on early, followed by Spinal Tap with Joe Satriani on guest lead guitar, Alice In Chains, with Duff McKagen on bass, Soundgarden and the one only true Temple Of The Dog set ever. Photo of my My Space page of Eddie and Chris taken by Marty Temme says it all. The entire cast of Twin Peaks was partying in the balcony. A music business veteran promotion guy comes up to me elated and inebriated and says, “This is the best party I’ve ever been too. I just got a blow job in the parking lot!” Bon Jovi played for us to help promote Keep The Faith and Pantera killed the last RIP party before I departed the company in mid ‘94.



Who did you interview?

Axl, Slash, James, Kirk, Lars, Jason, Megadeth, Soundgarden, Primus, Bon Jovi, Motorhead (still good pals with Lemmy, see him at the Rainbow now and then), Motley Crue, Queensryche, Tesla, Def Leppard and about fifty more. During the KNAC.COM online journalistic resurrection of 2000-2001, I did a streaming video series and sat down with Rage Against The Machine, Korn, P.O.D. Disturbed, Pantera, Static X, Rob Halford, Ian Astbury, Brian Johnson and others.



Which artists did you find difficult to interview during your years at RIP?

It was never difficult because I operate without expectations with only sparse preparation and few canned questions. My style has always been to hang, have a conversation, let personality and chemistry dictate the course of the content. Sometimes it made for magical exchanges, other times, flat root beer. But that’s the nature of the beast. I just dug (and still do) talking to musicians about their ‘muse.’ Most of these special blokes are tortured narcissists, driven by shadow as much as light. Being a writer, this has always fascinated me. Because I am them and they are me and we are all the fucking walrus, in this together. ‘Til the end times.



Which artist(s) gave you the best interview?

I’m not big on rankings or lists but memorable chats were Nikki Sixx on his New York hotel floor in ’89, the Slash RIP snake cover rap at the guitarist’s house in the Hollywood Hills and later with Jeffrey Ressner at a local restaurant for our Rolling Stone cover story; Chris Cornell in Denver the night we hitched a ride back to the hotel with two fans in the parking lot after the Skid Row/Pantera/Soundgarden concert. Phillip passed a joint around on stage during the encore where Bas and Chris joined in. Cornell was not a big pot smoker and his buzz got him impatient after the gig. He wanted to leave and his band mates were still in the arena hanging out. So I suggested the adventure. Let’s just walk out in the parking lot and find a ride with fans. It was so Almost Famous long before Cameron scripted the Topeka party sequence; Brian Johnson in his room at the Four Seasons in 2000 for KNAC.COM; Rob Halford on my Breath Of Fire radio show for KNAC.COM when he confessed he’d had both UFO and paranormal ghost encounters; Geoff Tate in London. Sammy Hagar at the Ritz in Chicago. David Lee Roth in the driveway of his father’s San Marino home. Tyler on the floor of my office at Flynt. Jimmy Page at the Bel Age. They’re all Golden Gods to me, and they’re all on drugs (laughs).



You wrote some famous articles on Bon Jovi (inc. the December 1992 RIP cover story ‘Bon Jovi: Born Again’) when was the last time you spoke to Jon and Ritchie Sambora?

I wrote the bio for the new All American Rejects LP, When The World Comes Down. Spending three months with these stellar lads from Oklahoma, watching their creative process, calling them friends was my enjoyable project of 2007, along with the Black Tide and Rev Theory interviews. The new kids, their youthful exuberance and reverence for the band and era that I reported so intimately on, reignited my metal pen, so to speak. When I sat down with Black Tide, I was told Gabriel had never done a real sit down and was uncomfortable with interviews. He was only 15 for God’s sake. Before the session, I handed each member of the band a Xerox of Jim Morrison’s college transcript, which I’ve had in my archives since working in the U.C.L.A. Registrar’s office after graduating in ’79. They were all big Doors fans. But for Gabe, I had something special. My laminate from the GN’R/Metallica stadium tour replete with a photo RIP’s bearded editor on the back. Gabe’s father took me aside after the interview and told me his son had never opened up like that or seemed so comfortable, which made me feel very good. Musicians by nature don’t like doing press. Why not make the experience as enjoyable and enlightening as possible?
Anyway Jon Bon Jovi loves the Rejects – and they share the same powerful agency, CAA - so they scored two nights at the Garden in New York opening for the BJ. I sat behind the stage night one with my buddy Larry, a huge Jersey bred fan. At one point in the set, Jon came to the back railing behind the Riser and saw me. There was eye contact and he flashed that Svengali smile with an affectionate nod. After the gig, I spent some time with Richie. He had a little hospitality area set up for his mom and some friends. I couldn’t help but notice how much his new girlfriend resembled Heather, whom I’ve adored since she was married to Tommy Lee. When she and Richie broke up, that bummed me out, like oh shit, if this marriage fails, then all of ‘em are in trouble. I remember watching her in the pit on numerous occasions. She took her spot right under Richie and glared lovingly at him the entire gig. Rock star unions are fraught with peril for obvious reasons. Anyway, Sambora and me hadn’t seen each other in three years since the Joint in Las Vegas’ 10th Anniversary where Bon Jovi did a set in the parking lot and we all watched Nine Inch Nails together from the balcony. Jon’s wife, Dorthea, was visibly aroused by Trent. It was a good hang. Richie was always the one I was closest to in the band. A kindred spirit. We stood on the stage together after the Garden had emptied and took a photo.



What were they like to interview?

All the guys were open and transparent and easy to rap with except Jon. He was always guarded, mindful of his appearance and presentation. Like Mick Jagger, Jon leaves nothing to chance. He’s a genius in that respect and a challenging interview for a reporter who’s come to expect and cherish honesty and candor. The best rap I ever had with Jon was when I was on the road in Europe with the band for three weeks in 2001 putting together a demo for a TV show I called, Rock A Mile With Lonn Friend. We were in Venice, a day off between Padova, Italy and Vienna, Austria. Jon and I took a boat to the Cipriani Hotel - a location he fondly recalled as the site of the U-571 wrap party – and drank pinot griggio. I rolled an hour of the most honest, naked, genuine Jon Bon Jovi you could imagine. A slice of it is in the edit of the demo that you can find on You Tube.



You were an A&R person at Arista. Who did you represent?

I signed The Bogmen the week I got there in ’94, a remarkable six piece from Long Island with a frontman that resembled Bono and Frank Sinatra on crack. We made two LPs before my contract was up and I (and they) were set off into the wilderness. I also oversaw the signing of Nerf Herder and had the EELS ready to close until Clive [Davis] said E wasn’t a star after the showcase I set up and that was pretty much the end of my A&R adventure at Arista.



What was it like being in the business rather than being an observer writing about the business?

I loathed the business, the egos, the marketing-minded bottom line conscious agendas that often trumped the essence of the music. I wrote countless memos to explain myself, why I felt this band or that was worthy of our precious attention. Like kangaroos in their own cloistered courtroom, the suits hopped from one act to the next, giving second’s not even minutes of evaluation time. A&R was maddening but also a great lesson. I learned about waste, self-entitlement, corporate credos. I also lived the high life with business class travel and fine dining up the ass. Since ’98 when that gig ended, I’ve been on a path of self-examination and discovery. Ten years of Kundalini yoga has altered my view of the world beyond the business. I don’t think I could ever work inside a company again. I haven’t in six years. Freelance is rough on the bank account but an elixir to the soul. And I would not be the writer I am today had I not suffered like Job in the wake of the Clive experience. Riding high in April shot down in May. That’s life.



Who were/are your favourite music writers?

Because I didn’t read a lot of mags, I never developed an alignment to any single scribe. I hold Harvey Kubernik and Bob Lefsetz in current high esteem. I’ve shamefully not read enough Lester Bangs or Chet Flippo, though the latter’s anthology, Everybody Was Kung Fu Dancing, provided the early structural inspiration for Life On Planet Rock. Last June, while attending the Bonnaroo festival in Tennessee as background for my Dec ‘08 Metallica Metal Edge cover story, I met Chet for lunch in Nashville. He told me a great Rolling Stones ’72 tour story and fed me some wicked local BBQ.



What made you decide to write your autobiography Life On Planet Rock?

I was going through divorce, living in the desert, decomposing like a brittle leaf on a burned out summer lawn and one day I stared at all the documents I had in my laptop, stuff that was never published, just musings and essays. It wasn’t a book and had no theme or narrative. But during the literary process of putting a proposal together, shopping and landing a deal, and then assembling a bunch of anecdotes, a memoir evolved.



For whatever reason is there anything you didn’t include in the book? Or would you say it’s “warts ‘n all”?

Planet Rock is far from warts and all. During the big revision where I drafted more than a hundred new pages, some material was lost either by editing or my own personal re-thinking. Truth be told, some of the stuff that would have sold more copies would have been difficult for my daughter to digest and no being in this life or the next means more to me than Megan. She is the one perfect accomplishment of my journey in his incarnation. I took the high road because my spiritual teachings for a decade have tutored that mindset. My mom loathes Jon Bon Jovi. She thinks a lot of millionaire musicians have taken advantage of me. I feel gratitude for the peaks and the valleys and the last five years, I’ve discovered the essence of friendship. When you’re the most influential voice in hard rock music for eight years, everyone kisses your ass and calls you buddy. When you’re broke from divorce and don’t have a business card anymore, it separates the human wheat from the chafe. The fans have kept me going, their messages, emails, amazing compositions of support and love. To that end, my cup runneth over. And there are so many great, beautiful rockers I still hold close to my heart. Walking around the NAMM show in Anaheim this weekend I encountered so many familiar faces and felt the love. The support remains strong. Nothing means more to me than relationships, be they artist, executive, anyone whose crossed your path and made a difference. Rex and Pepper from Down grabbed me off the convention floor while they’re signing autographs and I sat and rapped with fans as they passed though. It was awesome, the kind words about my memoir or remembrances of what RIP meant to these amazing, loyal metal fans. I’m feeling really positive now about future media ventures and especially the RIP coffee table book concept. I want it to reflect the old school and the new who wouldn’t be where they are, living the dream, without Maiden, Slayer, Anthrax, Metallica, Priest, Motorhead. Next generation rockers from various genres show up on my radar all the time, seeking advice, bios, just an ear to hear what they’ve been making in their home studio. I broker deals and consult, connecting folks bent on expression who’re looking for a way into a system that is constantly changing. That service fulfils me. If I can get help people find Katy Pfaffl or Ruby James or L.A.’s Cockpit – three unsigned entities deserving of a shot right now – that’s a blessing. I’m working with a singer from Rochester, New York, named Kris Hadlock, who eats and sleeps the Bon Jovi rock star dream. In fact, he has songs that are so ‘80s metal authentic, you feel like you’re in a time warp listening to them. It won’t be easy finding a way into the machine but Kris’ passion is so strong, I wouldn’t bet against him.



Have you received any feedback from those artists who feature in the book (such as JBJ and Sambora)?

None. I have no idea who’s read the book except those artists who’ve directly mentioned it to me and there have been several. But I’ve dropped enough names in this interview already and I’m really working on that bad habit.



Was writing the book a therapeutic experience?

Absolutely. I’m not ashamed to report that I’ve battled with manic depression and oft times, what eliminated my anxiety was merely sitting in front of the laptop and tapping whatever came forth. Before blogs, I was sending 1,000 word email rants to my mailing list. Since launching my My Space in 2005, I’ve posted almost 90 blogs. There’s a book right there. It’s some of the best writing I’ve ever done because it was uncompensated and unassigned. Stream of conscious midnight rambles. Gems and turds. Existential, self –effacing, transparent. What did Dylan says? “When you’ve got nothing, you’ve not nothing left to lose/You’re invisible, you’ve got no secrets to conceal.”



How long did it take you to write the book? Did you have to research anything maybe because you’d forgotten such and such happened?

It took about two years and I had invaluable help from online music scribe, Tony Kuzminski, a Chicago fan and musicologist who began writing me in 2000 at KNAC.COM. He has evolved into quite a journalist with an enormous blog file at antimusic.com and elsewhere. Tony fact checked every page of Planet Rock.



Will there be a sequel?

I’ve been contemplating that for some time. The Moons Of Planet Rock: Further Journeys On The Rock N’ Roll Road Less Travelled, something like that. A more eclectic collection given my passion for music spans the galaxy of styles. I’ve got about a dozen chapters near completion, B-sides of the memoir or other meanderings. I would love to see my ‘Dreaming Of Kate’ tale published being an archetype Kate Bush fan.



Can you tell me about some of the radio and TV work you’ve done recently?

I just finished consulting and being interviewed for two documentaries, Rock Wives for E! Entertainment, and an upcoming 80s Metal Sunset Blvd. production for VH1. I also contributed to a new UK-produced DVD on Tool where I pretty much articulated the link between King Crimson and Maynard’s dark and delicious outfit. Without shame, I am a proud, dyed in the British wool prog rocker, bred on Genesis, Camel and Gentle Giant. It’s very cool having Derek Shulman as a personal friend. Who’d of thought the lead singer for the most avant-garde prog ensemble in history would be the guy to discover and sign Bon Jovi? Life’s a fucking mystery, top to bottom.



Are there any rock stars you haven’t met (yet) but would like to?

Bono, Coner Oberst, Thom Yorke, Jack White, Bob Weir, Citizen Cope – off the top of my pointed head.



What kind of advice would you give to aspiring rock scribes?

Worship and wax accordingly about the music and remember that the musician is human, flawed and disconnected. And if you get the opportunity to break bread with these characters, don’t confront – communicate.



What are your future projects?

I’m shopping a radio talk show demo that Slash and Steve Lukather, two of my dearest long-term friends in the musician clique - came in and recorded with me. I want the airwaves back, Joey Ramone if you can hear me. Got a lot to say and teach; the artists deserve a place to hang and rap with a kindred dysfunctional spirit. Not to promote product but to shake the tree, as Peter Gabriel would say. Now that you’ve got me thinking about it again, I should get that Planet Rock sequel done. But the RIP coffee table project is front and center. Dave Grohl says he’ll kick my ass if I don’t get that book done. Times like these, eh?



Interview by Neil Daniels 2008

here's the pleasure of close-reading texts:
In truth, politeness is artificial good humor, it covers the natural want of it, and ends by rendering habitual a substitute nearly equivalent to the real virtue. It is the practice of sacrificing to those whom we meet in society all the little conveniences and preferences which will gratify them, and deprive us of nothing worth a moment's consideration; it is the giving a pleasing and flattering turn to our expressions which will conciliate others, and make them pleased with us as well as themselves. How cheap a price for the good will of another! When this is in return for a rude thing said by another, it brings him to his senses, it mortifies and corrects him in the most salutary way, and places him at the feet of your good nature in the eyes of the company. But in stating prudential rules for our government in society I must not omit the important one of never entering into dispute or argument with another.

Is it Oscar Wilde's remark about education of woman, ' to live 10 years with a man... is enough of it...' or something like that...
After reading that biography of Jefferson, if I were to be asked to pick out his private sins' or intellectual compromises among all other public virtues, two factual incidents, whence in one Jefferson elected peace over justice and the other public injustice over private justice. 1. In regards of the peculiar death of his mentor George Wythe and his slave Michael Brown whom Wythe entrusted Jefferson as a guardian upon his death in his will. 2. In a letter from Abigail Adams to Jefferson, she professed about the reason of a once-broken friendship between John Adams and Jefferson. Luckily, they explained how their public enmity occurs and for the right reason on each side before they both expired in 1826 through approximately 380 letters preserved.

my private note/source:
https://www.researchgate.net/post/How_do_you_consider_to_correct_or_to_let_it_be_of_false_information_on_wikipedia_or_any_online_quick_and_easy_references

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