Saturday, July 19, 2008

IT'S 5150 TIME!!!

A busy week leading up to the concert Friday night. Visited the hospital to get an MRI taken of my bum shoulder. I had an anxiety attack upon being rolled onto the cylindrical chamber, saved only when they covered my eyes, undid the strap on one hand and provided me with a tube blowing cool air that I directed at my face. A very noisy experience. I was told the images would be reviewed by the doctor by Thursday. No such luck, Monday being the next opportunity to hear back from them. The contrast dye they injected into the joint made it more painful and reduced the arms movement even more than before. The pain killer that preceded the injection made the arm feel like normal for that whole evening. Reality returned that night when I woke at 1 in the morning.

A house of sickness
The pain and anxiety
Tight as a coffin

Ever present pain
Constant gnawing on the soul
Weakens the spirit

Bad news for my employee with brain cancer. A relapse has her in the hospital again, facing another round of surgery to remove two growing tumors. The positive vibes coming from her good progress over the last two months have been replaced by a grim reality.

Struggles through the night
A matter of life and death
Battle fought alone

See it in her eyes
A future so uncertain
Rides the edge of life

On Friday I learned that a Russian "botware" had infected my computer at work, unknown to me. It apparently was communicating with its master back in the old USSR. The secrets they now have! Maybe they'll use all the soil cleanup standards listed in scattered files saved on the computer.

A life of its own
The Russian botware infects
Computer pen pals

I was tired this evening and so decided to pick a short set list to listen to out on the prairie. Instead of a bootleg recording, I tried something different by going straight for Van Halen's studio release "5150" (March 24, 1986), their 7th album, Sammy Hagar's debut with the band. Unlike earlier albums, it reached number 1 on the US charts, only 3 weeks after its release. With David Lee Roth's departure, the band ran through a list of possible replacements, settling for former Montrose singer Sammy Hagar. According to the Van Halen Encyclopedia:

"Sammy's obsession with cars eventually landed him the job with Van Halen. His mechanic, Claudio Zampolli, suggested to Eddie Van Halen that Sammy would make a good replacement for David Lee Roth, Ed invited Sammy to a "business meeting", which evolved into a jam session. Having found their new front man, the band began recording what would be their first #1 album. In fact, every Van Halen studio album recorded with Sammy Hagar reached #1."

It is a great album. Unlike the bootleg concert recordings, the sound is fabulously crisp and well balanced. It includes some classic songs of theirs that were probably played at every gig thereafter.

Beautiful evening, having rained shortly before sunset, clearing the air and cooling everything down to a nice temperature after a 90 degree day. I would have been huddling in the truck trying to escape the strong cool wind were it not for having a second shirt that I wore against the chill.

Smokes scent in the air
Cheap tequila on his breath
Music rocks the night

Thunderstorm's sharp rain
Passes, gray turning orange
Ablaze in sunsets light

Sammy's lead vocals
Paired with Eddie's hot guitar
Dynamic duo

Studio album
Eddie's guitar sounds so clear
He stands beside me

A rising full moon
Passes through layered clouds
Rimmed with its pale light

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