Thursday, November 12, 2009


I don’t even know why I’m doing this. I think it’s narcissistic in nature to believe that anything I write would have any impact on anyone whatsoever. For people who know me well, it’s no secret that my ego and my insecurities have been waging war with each other for years. It’s a never ending battle, but one that can be both frustrating and comical to observe (or so I’ve been told).

Honestly though. Why am I starting a blog?

I keep asking myself this question on my flight from Connecticut to Florida. This flight will be just the first leg of yet another journey across the United States. I haven’t kept a written record of tour, or ANY part of my life, since my first tour over 17 years ago.

17 YEARS AGO!!??

Yes. 17 years ago. Going on 18, thank you very much.

But back to the question: WHY? There are a lot of reasons I could point at - Boredom? Possibly. My increasing sentiment towards nostalgia? Nah…not really. Reading other people’s blogs and saying “man…I could do that SO much better!” Maybe. Two hours into this flight and I think I’ve narrowed it down to three main reasons:

1. 1. I have realized how truly blessed I am to be able to “live my dream” for as long as I have been able to. Maybe it’s time I start sharing these amazing experiences with someone besides my closest family and friends. Maybe I can inspire someone to do better in their life. Maybe I can make someone laugh and forget their trouble for a few minutes with one of my stupid stories. ALL of the above are what I consider to be reason enough.

2. 2. My father recently was diagnosed with colorectal cancer. I found out pretty soon after I got home from Warped Tour ’09 and to say I was caught off guard would be the understatement of my life. My father, who is also named Peter, is the TRUE definition of our shared name – “a rock”. He has been that rock to everyone whose lives he has touched: Always there for them, always volunteering his time, always doing for others. Both of my parents (my mom’s name is Karen and you will hear about them from time to time) always taught me to go above and beyond in all you do and treat everyone equally. I have always tried my best to do just that. I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised when complete strangers to me were brought to tears when told about my father’s diagnosis. It effected everyone he knew and I was unknowingly, yet expectedly, thrust into my father’s shoes – getting the bad news first, telling everyone the bad news, consoling everyone, keeping everyone updated, keeping everyone’s spirits up, not letting everyone know how bad it was when I knew it wasn't good…this list of responsibilities goes on and on. I know I’m not the only person in this world who’s had someone they love stricken by a horrible disease but I figured that I could be one of the people to talk about it as openly as possible. Maybe it would be good for them….and I know for certain that it will be good for me.

3. 3. Why not?

I think the third reason was the clincher.

Now a few quick facts before you read on or bookmark this page or whatever. I am a New York Yankees fan so I will, from time to time, talk about them. If you are a “Yankee Hater”, please skip over those parts. I also love food and love to cook. Maybe I’ll share a recipe or two. I also love music. It is my one true passion that became my profession. I went to Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA and graduated in 2000 with a Bachelors Degree in Music Education. I’m not telling you this to brag. I'm telling you this because I am VERY opinionated on music. I will tell you what I love, what I hate and the facts to back up what I feel this way . You may not agree and I encourage you to call me out if this is the case, but be warned – I will respond and if you are uninformed or a jerk in your correspondence, then expect me to spank you like your dad did.

OH! Here’s the most important disclaimer. This is MY blog and has NOTHING to do with the band I perform in, other than from time to time I will talk about my experiences while on tour. So please, don’t ask me to forward an email to Roger or ask if I’ll send your band’s myspace link to Vinnie. I won’t. Also I have some friends some people may consider to be ‘famous’ (or infamous in a few cases). I will never use their real names unless they tell me it's ok and you will never get them out of me because above all I am loyal to my friends.

You should be too.

As Van Morrison is singing through my headphones, I’m reminded how excited I am to be going back on tour. This particular record of his, called ‘Moondance’, has been with me on every tour that I have ever been on. The last song on the record is called “Glad Tidings” is one of my favorites. The last verse goes:

”They’ll talk to you while you’re in transit and you’ll visualize not taking any chances, but meet them halfway with love, peace and persuasion and except them to rise for the occasion. And it gratifies when the scene materialized right in front of your eyes by surprise. “

That pretty much sums up what I have been doing the last 17 years of my life – meeting people of all kinds and having experiences with them, even though I may be a little nervous of the results of said encounters. But this is how stories are created – by talking to strangers. The one thing my mom told me not to do when I was little. I could never help myself though. Here I go again. 30 years or so of not heeding my mother’s warnings have yielded some crazy stuff, as you soon will read.

And for the first time in a long time I am really looking forward it.


  1. I've been following your interesting "tweets" for a while now and am glad you have a blog to read.

    Been a huge LTJ fan for a long time and I too play tenor sax in a ska band. What kind of sax and mouthpiece do you rock?

  2. I too have followed your "tweets" because I enjoy randomness from random people.

    Reading about your father's diagnosis felt like the wind was knocked out of me. It is how I felt the day I heard my mum's lung cancer diagnosis in '07. She was my best friend and my rock. I am sincere in saying I send you and your family strength to tackle whatever lay ahead.

    Feeling guilty that I have never listened to LTJ, but maybe I will give the band a try.

    Look forward to reading your "Blahg". Cheers

  3. Nicely worded good sir- all the best for the run. I will follow it on my iCal! ;)

  4. whatever your reason for starting a blog, i say thank you. your tweets are always insightful and sobering. ha. i'm listening to brown eyed girl..(on the radio)
    ps. i'm a red sox fan but we're cool. it's just baseball ;)

  5. Continuing the stalkage. Are you creeped out yet?

    In all seriousness reading this reminded me that I am way overdue to write a blog update myself. Thanks for the push.

  6. JR, I have been following you on twitter under the username SleepySeanzzz for quite some time because LTJ is one of my favorite bands of all time. I even remember having an AIM conversation with you when I was in high school that I got when we became friends on Myspace (remember that?). We have never met personally but we both are from CT and are both huge Yankee fans and appreciate music. I just checked out your blahg and think it is a cool idea to write while on the road this tour.

    On another note, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer last spring while I was away at college in RI. It was very tough but as long as you think positive thoughts you will be much happier. Fortunately for my mother, they caught it early and she spent a week in the hospital after they removed all of the tumors. I visited her after work every day that week with the rest of my family and we watched one of many Yankee win streaks every day that week this past summer.

    I know being on tour must be very hard during this difficult time just like it was for me when I was at school and couldn't concentrate on a single class. But your dad is proud of you for living your dream and it makes him happy to see his son put smiles on the faces of hundreds of people night after night. Keep on doing what you're doing, I'm praying for your father and I hope you guys will make it through this.