Sunday, January 1, 2017

2017 GOALS (not resolutions)

I don't mind resolutions, but it's almost a tradition to break them (haha!). So...this is all about setting goals - both "process" goals and "product" goals.
On-stage at Lexi-Fest Festival 2016

Really, it's the same as our lifestyle challenges, but those got few and far between, with most comments happening on social media instead of here. So the idea here is to use this post as a PLACE to go to keep track of your goals, keep them at the forefront of your mind, and help each other stay focused....not to mention, sometimes we can help each other on the journey by some sort of collaborative effort. are some of my goals:

1) HEALTH / FITNESS - As evidenced by past posts, my work-outs are pretty intense. But they often are too sporadic and mostly without any goals in mind. That's OK for the most part, but I thought I'd set some goals this time....and those should be done based on the FIVE (5) components of fitness (cardiovascular endurance, muscular endurance, muscular strength, body composition, and flexibility)

ODIS photo at 50th birthday
A) Cardio/Flexibility - The first is easy, in that I simply need to increase my cardio workouts (more stairs, tabata, heavy bag work, biking, running) to 3X per week, and increase my flexibility by adding specific stretching to my routine at least 2X per week.

B) Muscles (strength/endurance) - This is also simple in that I just need to make sure I work out with my standard body weight (and occasional light weights) 3X per week....though, when possible, I'd like to add more heavy weight work-outs (something not do-able immediately). I'll likely set a few goals throughout the year at specific times (100 pull-ups in 3 minutes or max reps of pull-ups uninterrupted).

C) Body Composition - I'm pretty cut, but I really have no idea what my current composition is. I'm guessing about 15% body fat. I'd like to cut that in half, but ultimately maintain an average of about 10%.

D) Diet - Definite re-commitment to my quasi-paleo high-raw lifestyle. I've experimented a LOT over the past 2 years. It's all good, but I think the raw/paleo (with not so much meat) is where its at for me at this juncture.

2) GUITAR PLAYING - I spend a lot of time drilling scales and such with students, and time rehearsing for particular projects. What I haven't done enough of in the past few years is set goals and grab them. Soooo

A) Fingerstyle goals - (I'll include tabs or exercises or video examples later) include increasing my "DI" style approach by being able to play the ostinato at half the time of the bass melody lines; solidify my bass drone blues playing; nail down a handful of the Travis & counter-point drills; write at least 3 new instrumentals for solo guitar that feature these and other techniques in my bag.

B) Plectrum goals - include increasing my base speed on scales as well as scale sequences by roughly 10%....and arp work by about the same.

Onstage 2016 for Prince Tribute
C) General guitar goals - include increasing my overall playing skill (utilizing the SDML components as a barometer) by at least 10%.

3) MUSIC - Here is an incomplete list of music goals for the year:

A) Record new musicprojects include a FOLK project (with focus more on vocals, vocal harmonies, and traditional songs - thinking a short 3-5 song EP ACOUSTIC ORIGINAL music project with 3-5 songs...and an ORIGINAL ELECTRIC ROCK/FUSION release with 3 incredibly  "expansive" pieces (featuring some interesting rhythm ideas, symmetrical harmonies, pseudo modulations/bitonality, and more)...and, see item (C) below.

B) Performances/WorkshopsDo at least 4 school clinics, 20 workshops, and 20 solo public performances in 2017 (in addition to any other performances, studio sessions, and the like)....with at least ONE per state in states other than KY (including WV, OH, IN, TN).

C) CompositionCompose & license several "a Personal Note" pieces for commercial use (see below's "business" goals).

4) BUSINESS - Without being as exacting as above (such a delineation will be between me and my biz partners), the reality is that my personal life (coupled with some local and national market trends) have hurt me considerably in the financial realm. It's clearly time to rectify that situation, and fast. HARD GOAL: DOUBLE my annual income in 2017.

With manager & festival partner Angelee Feltner 2016
That said, among my biz goals least 4 new guitar gods interviews and DOUBLE the articles at Skinny Devil Magazine (last year: 29)....a video series discussing teaching philosophies and more... a few articles or books or e-books covering music business and music and guitar playing....transition to greater group enrollment and cut to one day of private teaching (which is actually the opposite of where I should go, given area trends, but we're gonna try to make this fly)..... increase the number of major live event productions from 2 (Lexi Awards and Lexi-Fest Festival) to at least 6 (awards show, TWO Lexington festivals, and 3 more in surrounding areas)....make music licensing (via past catalog or custom composition, especially "A Personal Note") one of the staples of my business model as part of my "decentralization" of more "support" gigs for major artists (live stage and studio).....and provide a LOT more opportunities for others via these and other projects as on-commission project partners, internships, paid internships, and pay-per project.....perform at NAMM with an endorsement at least ONE large-scale regional or national TV and/or radio gig.

5) PERSONAL - The quick list.....Dress better (this is a directive from the boys, who saw me dressed up several times for gigs and said "Wow, granddad, you should look good all the time!".)....A focus on relationships, though my focus, being single again, will actually be on strengthening ties with FAMILY, and strengthening ties with FRIENDS....maybe test my Othello chops against more humans of advanced skill rather than just battling machines....make time to READ again....considering making a video series as a "notes for my kids" (with "kids" being kids, step-kids, grandkids, etc) covering all the things I should have taught my kids and all the things I'd like to teach my grandkids, but want in concrete form in case old Thanatos [the Bron Samedi, Ankou] comes knocking).....and I'd really like to get better at (and more involved with) communicating - via writing and example - the philosophy of FREEDOM. As in voluntary: whether its communalism, individualism, etc, and how to make it work in the public and private spheres. But more on that last one later.

Sooo...that's about it for now, for me. BUT....

 What about YOU???


  1. My New Years Day workout was (all wearing 20 pound weight vest)...600 stairs, assorted reps of body-weight exercises, series of Tibetan Rites, Junan Taiso (stretch series), and a little shadow boxing.

  2. Day TWO workout: 20 minutes stationary bike, 300 pushups, 300 squats, 300 dips.

    Day 3 work-out: (all with 20 pound weight vest) 600 stairs, 50 pull-ups, stretch series.

  3. Day 4: 20 minutes stationary bike, light weights...

  4. GOALS. Wow. What a short word, yet potentially "loaded" one as well. I'm always knocking around lifestyle challenges, ideas, concepts, and goals... I've many...this year though, I've been working over the last 2-3 months to seriously focus on a few main goals.

    1) I made the decision after much inner debate, searching and hours of making bubble maps, spread sheets, etc of the pros/cons of varied Graduate Programs-to pursue my Medical Degree. I've been a Registered Nurse for 13 years now and in health care for 17. Why did I did this? That's a story over coffee or beer or both... suffice it to say its coming...

    2) How do I get there? That's the Biggest Question/Goal right now.... I live in Albuquerque, NM and have a great career... and I've built numerous contacts in the Health Care field here, and the state has a terrific M3d School that favors non-traditional students such as myself.

    However, I have family that live outside of Cinci, OH. There are numerous facilities for work and the Med program there is a good one as well.

    Family would be huge support system during pre med and medical school. I've done the thinking, the math, the time into it... relocation at this point is my best bet. Plus, my parents are getting older and who knows how much longer they will be around?

    So?WHAT exactly are my goals in 2017?

    1st) Relocate to the Cincinnati, OH area.
    2nd) Get a job in area

    these two will correlate with long term goal of medical school.

    So far, I've made up a calendar of the next 6 months that incorporates not only my work schedule but also things I need to get done each week/month, etc. Color coordinated and all that...this helps me have a visual of my time line. The thought is to be out of Albuquerque and relocated to Cincinnati by the end of the month of August.

    A) under this is finding a home there. I have certain criteria-I have dogs and need an adequate yard for them to play in and for me to roll in the grass and leaves if I so feel the need as well! Plus it needs to be within 20 min or less of my sister's home as well.

    B) my house in Albuquerque, I need to get it ready to sell. ASAP. I have things listed to accomplish each week on this. Do I worry about making a gain in selling? Nope. Not in this market. I hope to "break even" is all.

    There it is....relocation-that has sell home/find home/find job under it....I'm sure there is more but this is what I can think of right now...I'll keep updates. Apologies for the sporadic writing!

    1. Awesome! Thanx for sharing, Shane! Please keep us posted on up-dates, changes, and all!!

  5. I'm about 4 days late on this but it's never too late to start something especially when it comes to bettering ones well being.

    So to me 2016 was a great start to the journey or reinventing myself, but it wasn't enough and came with a lot of failures. 2017 is going to be the year that I jump higher than ever into creating a better lifestyle, and more successful career. I'm going to keep it simple, but challenging at the same time.

    Physically I lost 35lbs, and got into decent shape in 2016. This year I want to go beyond that and get into complete “Fight Club” shape. I'm going to workout no less that 3x's a week, jog at least 3 miles a week, and jog the pinnacles once a week. By the summer time I wan’t to be able to jog up and down the entire east pinnacle without a break.

    Diet I'm going with lacto-ovo vegetarian for 3 weeks, then finish the month off with a raw food diet. Along with these diet’s I’m going to completely cut out gluten, cheese, sweets, and Starbucks. I’ll only be drinking once a week along side of a cheat day.

    Career I want to completely brand my profession to shooting nothing but live events, and band promotional photos. I also want to complete a few series that I've been working on and hold a gallery at the end of the year.

    Music I'm going to write/record a full album for my project "Ursula v.s. De Vil". Possible play a few shows, but that all depends on what is going on at that time.

    Mental health.... Go on a vacation and travel more, lol.

    There's more to this that I need to hash out objective wise, but though all these changes I'm hoping for a more optimistic, successful (and most importantly) a happier lifestyle.

    I'll try and post on a daily basis so you all can track my progress. Enough of this though, I need to get back to work!

    1. Awesome Damien! I don't eat sweets as a rule, but I did cut out gluten, milk products during 2016. Let me tell you, it improved my general well being 10 fold! I was highly surprised. Keep us posted!

    2. GREAT list! Thanx for sharing!!

  6. Day #5: 700 stairs, dumbell curls, assorted pushups & calf raises, stretch series, Tibetan Rites.

    Off to do business and then shoot video for a guitar company.....

  7. 219 Days until Departure:
    Books. Man, I DIG Books. I've procured many over the years...I USED to read frequently, now though not so much. I've books that are the "to be read" type, books I have read, and books that are my favorites or leather bound that I wish to keep.

    I began packing these books yesterday. I also have a large "donate" box that I am placing books in to drop off at my local library. Someone should benefit!

    This move assists me in getting back to a "minimalist" life. I used to be a very Spartan person-how much do I really need? In truth, not much. We often buy a house with more rooms than we need and then have to be the good consumerist and buy "stuff" to fill these rooms. Several years ago, I took everything out of storage, everything I had stored in KY as well and moved it all back here to Albuquerque...MAN, I've too much "STUFF"!

    I've designated the front bedroom of my house as the area I will place EVERYTHING that I want to take with me in the Move back Eastward. So far, I've 5 boxes there....I'm certain there will be many, many more.

    My plan is to get everything in there that I will be moving except the bare essentials-a few dishes, clothes etc. Let it sit there a week while I work on other aspects of moving and THEN go BACK and look at each box's label and determine if I can rid myself of said box or downsize the contents...thereby combining several boxes and having more to toss, give away or donate...

    So, For Jan, on my "Relocation Calendar" I have this in the margin: Clear Front Bedroom, Place packing materials/boxes in front bedroom (both tasks accomplished)

    Then, on each day that I am not working I have 1-3 things listed to accomplish...for instance, tomorrow I have 1) Pack Drums 2) Sort Snowboard Gear-give away extra, 3) take apart bed frame

    I took the bed frame apart yesterday, so I am ahead in that area. Where will I sleep you say? Air mattress or the pull-out couch (which will also be given away)...

    I'm an amateur drummer at best, more like a dabbler, but I have high dreams and that is one hobby I wish to keep. The set I have is a particular set that was produced only a few years and is more compact than your standard set of drums... It took me a LONG time to find this-and I finally ordered it from a shop in Chicago-so I am going to move it. Plus given it's size it will not take up much area in my new home.

    Snowboarding. Man, I dig that too...I learned to snowboard here and for 3 years I went every opportunity. The first year, the "lifties" and bar tender at the local slope knew me by name. I was the only guy that could run a tab-it was a good time. If you were on the slope when I was I guarantee you got a beer!

    Now though, I do not go as much. When you've accomplished something like that and in my case I could make it down a Double Black Diamond by the time Billy Idol's "Dancin' with Myself" was over... it reached a point that without others to go with and experience the epicness of the Mountain...I had less desire.

    So, moving back East there will be less opportunities to snowboard. I don't need all the gear, the multiple snow board pants and jackets etc now... time to slim down.

    I also sold one of my vintage motorcycles yesterday to a friend here in town. It's a 1978 Honda...sweet. But in reality, I don't need to haul it and I have enough to think on....he got a good deal, I know he'll take care of it and enjoy it and I made a little cash-not as much as I paid for it but that's not a big deal.

    Making progress....I add narrative to my goals and progression, apologies if it's too much for some....hopefully it will help you to see how I am getting rid of things, even semi-emotional ties to many items...

  8. Monday was 200 pushups, 20 squiats, 200 dips...yesterday was 500 stairs and quick weight about to hit the pullup bar.

    Did interview for paper and now prepping for Red Barn Radio continuing awards prep...workoing on details for new rock band programs (yes, plural) with JD....

  9. Wednesday was 100 pullups, 500+ squats, 700+ calf-raises.

    Felt that the next day!

    Today (Friday) I just finished 1000 stairs with 20lb weight vest. Out of time...but hoping for a light evening workout.

    Then rehearse for RB Radio 2017 dates....

  10. Day off of work...though I did respond to a few emails and am heading down to the 10th anniversary show of LexJam to chat and jam....this morning was 25 pull-ups to start the heart (haha!) and afternoon saw (with weight vest) 100 stairs, 50 pull-ups, 200 squats, 400 calf raises...followed by a light weight work-out and both Tibetan Rites and Junan Taiso (stretch series).

    Gonna try to sneak in some guitar practice now....

  11. Sunday workout: 500 stairs, light weights, 20 minutes stationary bike.

    Today (Monday): about to do stairs and pullups this morning, then pushups, dips, and squats this afternoon.

    Survey goals and accomplishments so far and then report back here....