Closure v.1.0

This is not the final version of the first chapter of Perpetual Tuesday, or even the whole chapter; it’s just the first version, which I copy/pasted away and started over with a new take. Take it for what it is, and enjoy:

The taste of acid in the back of his throat caused Richard to roll over and groan. It was still dark in the bedroom, and he couldn’t see the clock past Andy yet to see what time it was. Standing up, he caught a glimpse of the clock and groaned again. 2:30 AM.

Trying not to wake her, Richard carefully rose from bed and wended his way through the dark, out to the living room and to his desk for his Pantoprazole. He managed not to step on anything vital, like a jingle ball or his glass guitar slide. He always felt as if he should be more theatrical when taking this medication, to see if it worked better. As it was, he was preparing to sit naked in front of the computer until he settled down enough to go back to sleep.

Theatrical concerns were on his mind again. He had recently told Drake and Randy that he had an idea for a new concept album. He wasn’t sure if he was biting off too much, but he wanted to do something really huge. He had been haunted by a dream for over two decades; He was visiting with a new friend or fan or something, and was looking through their music collection while they were out of the room. What he found in that dream sequence had stuck with him through all the years and the demo recordings and the albums and the roster changes and all the rest: a three-disc album by The Distance.

The problem, if it could be called one, was that he needed to write a story that would sew the songs he wanted to use into one cohesive narrative. The story itself wasn’t really worrying him, but he didn’t want to have to rewrite all of those lyrics to fit the plot. The songs he was using were twenty and twenty five years old, songs he had become a musician to record. His raison d’être, really. Even as he had been leaving school, contemplating his possible career as a novelist and comic writer, he was seriously considering music as well. He ached to be able to play and sing the songs he had been laboring over all through high school, and had a natural talent for picking up instruments and learning to play them relatively well, but he was then—and some would argue that he remained—a highly undisciplined and sloppy musician.

This had never sat well with him, and yet, it was difficult for him to explain why simply wood-shedding and playing covers, the way every other musician learned their chops, was so difficult for him. Perhaps it was the Bipolar Disorder. Manic Depression hadn’t stopped Jimi Hendrix, but it certainly was an impediment for Richard.

Of course, the popular theory was simply that he was too lazy to learn properly, but it definitely hadn’t felt that way when he had recorded the last two Distance albums, where he basically ended up playing all of the instruments himself. The albums hadn’t sold as well as the last true band album, back in 2008, but he had needed to go back into the hospital, and hadn’t gotten out before the band had broken up and gone their separate ways.

He had tried to get the band back together upon his being released in 2010. There had been overtures from Drake and Randy, but Reg was still adamant that he couldn’t be in the band anymore, and both Dana and Julia had left to go work on an album of their own. They’d won a Grammy for that album, and the next album had sold platinum. Oddly enough, they had both decided to give up on the road after that, and were now writing music together for television, and didn’t have time to rehearse and tour an album. Richard suspected there was more to it than that, but Julia wouldn’t tell him what had happened, and Dana was no longer talking to him.

Randy had been a faithful ally, working to finish the album with Drake while Richard had been in the hospital, but he had taken a new job as a courier a few years ago, and was now so busy, they almost never spoke. Drake was back working in retail, even though the royalties from his lyrical contributions to the last ‘real’ Distance album, Distinct Departures, should have kept him in comfort. Apparently, Drake didn’t handle money well in large amounts, either.

Richard knew the answer was to start a new band. He’d been staring down the barrel of that particular gun for some time now. He just couldn’t quite bring himself to admit that the Distance had run its course. For one thing, he still had hundreds of hours of jams and demos recorded that he couldn’t imagine using on a solo album. He had once taken a few snippets of jam music that had gone nowhere with the band and adapted them into a proper song, so he knew it was possible to revive even the most unlikely ideas and get usable song material out of them.

The thing about Distance music for him was, he’d written so many songs that didn’t fit the Distance framework, that really, he was all booked up for solo material for at least three albums. Even if he released albums on a Prince-like schedule, he still wouldn’t be free of Distance or solo album material for a couple of years. He didn’t want to start a new band until he had cleared the decks of the backlog, and if that meant recording all of the parts for one more album—even a three disc album—then that was the only way he could imagine doing it.

This of course brought him to the achingly real issue; he was living with his girlfriend in her apartment, and he didn’t feel right about making music there. Musicians are a notoriously antisocial bunch when it came to noise pollution. He still had some money saved up from the sale of his last two books and the previous three albums, but his hospital bills had eaten up a lot of his savings. Rent in NYC was as ridiculously high as ever, and he had lost his old apartment when he’d had to go into hospital the last time. He needed someplace he could work without disturbing Andy, who had work of her own to do.

Andy had successfully written, published and even adapted her first novel, Enlightenment, before he had gone into hospital. She was now a bona fide author in her own right, and she needed peace and quiet to work, because she was taking time away from her screenwriting gig to write a new novel. She’d been trying to get a new novel started for the last three years, but had been either too busy or too distracted. He’d offered to help her get started, just a few days ago, but she’d refused.

© 2013 Lee Edward McIlmoyle
Closure ver.1.0 pt 1 (of 5)
Closure ver.1.0 pt 2 (of 5)
Closure ver.1.0 pt 3 (of 5)
Closure ver.1.0 pt 4 (of 5)
Closure ver.1.0 pt 5 (of 5)

Tears ver.1.0 pt 1 (of 1)

Tears ver.2.0 pt 1 (of 3)
Tears ver.2.0 pt 2 (of 3)
Tears ver.2.0 pt 3 (of 3)

Don't be shy. Tell me what you really think, now.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers:

%d bloggers like this: