Backstage with Baldy

Santiago – September 30th

After Layne died, I had no idea what I was doing, but I knew that I had to get out of Seattle, so I packed up and moved to New York in an attempt at a fresh start.

I had a job interview not long after I moved there where the person asked me where I saw myself in five years.

I paused for a second before responding that I had no idea, and I wasn’t really the type of person who looks that far ahead and has a lofty career goal that I’m aiming for.

Well, I didn’t get the job obviously, but my point in bringing that up is to discuss the fact that I tend to live in the moment.

Obviously there’s a ton of planning and preparation that goes into touring, but beyond that, and big things like holidays and special events, I just take life day by day.

That’s probably not the best approach as far as a career-oriented life is concerned, but I don’t have a career-oriented life. My life tends to revolve around this band, and for better or worse, that’s the way it’s been for the last 25 years.

Life is made up of moments and experiences, and I’ve had the great good fortune of sharing a ton of those with the members of this band.

A few years ago we had a day off in Stockholm and I was out sightseeing when I stopped by the side of a river and just took about 5 or 10 minutes to clear my head of everything, relax, and take in the beautiful view.

From that day forward, I called incidents like that Stockholm moments.

They don’t happen all of the time, which actually makes it more special when they do occur.

All you have to do is just stop for a minute and get lost in the beauty and bliss of the moment, and fully appreciate where you are and what you have.

And they can happen anywhere. I’ve had a Stockholm moment mowing my lawn.

Mostly they happen on the road though, and in particular when I’m somewhere far away from home.

My latest one happened during Dam That River in Santiago Chile.

12,000 fans were going berserk, jumping up and down, singing along, and just generally going nuts.

The only bad thing about a Stockholm moment is when it hits you as you’re doing your job filming the band you work for.

I blissed out, got caught in the moment, spaced out, and realized shortly thereafter that I was filming the ceiling for a minute.

But that’s okay.

It was a full-on goose bump moment again, and when those hit, you just have to give in and enjoy it.

We’ve been out here for exactly eight weeks, and everyone is exhausted.

We’ve travelled a ton of miles, and two months is a long time to be away from home.

But then you get a gig like Santiago, and a moment like I had during Dam That River, and it’s all worth it again.

Anyway, that’s my new-age touchy-feely way of saying that I love this band more than anything, and to watch 12,000 people in Chile love them as much as me was absolutely incredible.

We were in the van driving back to the hotel after the show when Mike piped up and said “That was one of the top 5 arena shows we’ve ever played.”

It’s hard to think of four that were better.


P.S. Five years after that botched interview, I was back in Seattle and working for Alice In Chains again. Stockholm…


Backstage With Baldy

Bethlehem – August 16th

The last day of any tour is always a little extra hectic. You’re clearing everything off of the bus, dealing with travel plans to get everyone home, making sure gear is going to the right place, and on top of...

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