Wednesday, April 30, 2008


These crunchy snacks were made by Evans Food in Chicago. Though wrapped in an anonymous package, they proved to be both flavorful, and satisfying. A crisp, authentic treat!

Another plus was the cost - this big, six-ounce bag was priced at $1.18 - a dollar less than the Frito-Lay alternative, but every bit as tasty!

Chicago, IL 60609

Thursday, April 24, 2008


c. 2008 Rod Ice
All rights reserved

NOTE TO READERS: What follows here is a work of fiction. Do not be alarmed.

It had been a long week in the Icehouse home office.

After many winter nights of creative wordsmithing, a variety of projects waited to be finished. But my concentration had been broken by the seasonal rise of outdoor temperatures. Though I needed to be at the computer, spring was calling!

After a walk with Quigley and Riley, our household canine contingent, I made a fresh pot of coffee. Focus and concentration seemed to return, soon afterward. Finally, a half-finished manuscript on local athletes appeared from my pile. The creative moment had arrived!

Then, the telephone rang.

“Rodney?” the caller exclaimed, in a voice reminiscent of Katharine Hepburn. “This is Kate Meffler. How are you?”

I went numb with surprise. She was a coworker during my days with the Montville Messenger. One who hadn’t made contact in years. So it seemed proper to be polite and courteous. “Uhhhh… I’m great! How are youuu?”

“I’m calling on behalf of Geauga-Tel,” she said. “We’ve started a community interest show, and would like you to appear as a guest!”

My throat went dry. “Well,” I coughed. “What an honor! Thanks for asking!”

“It’s a discussion show,” she continued. “We call it ‘Hamglaze & Company.’ Each week, Carrie, our host, considers subjects of local interest with a panel of writers and celebrities.”

“Carrie?” I shouted. “Carrie the tennis coach?”

“Yes,” Meffler answered in a whisper.

“Carrie the teacher?” I repeated.

“Yes,” she said, patiently.

“Carrie from the council??” I said while fumbling my words.

“Yes, yes, yes!!” she said forcefully. “Your friend from Chardon. Will you join us, Rodney?”

I smiled. “Of course… of course! But, when did she get a television program? I’ve never heard of this before…”

“It has been on the air since early March,” she replied. “New viewers are tuning in every week. You can help us grow!”

My stomach filled with butterflies. Still, the opportunity was undeniably tempting. It would be a perfect way to become better acquainted with citizens across the county. “You can count on me, Kate. I’ll be there!”

* * * * * * * * * *

The Geauga-Tel studio was stuffy, and hot. Yet excitement filled the air. Conversation-bits flew wildly around our table. Suddenly, the director called out with authority in her voice. “Carrie! Here we go… five, four, three, two, one… we’re on the air!”

My famous friend looked regal in her red pantsuit and matching headwear. Her eyes glowed with Irish spirit. “Welcome friends, to Hamglaze & Company! Tonight, we have Stan Jelski, former chairman of the Geauga Republican Party; Kate Meffler, a long-time resident of Claridon, and staffer for Dennis Kucinich; and Rod Ice, columnist for the Geauga County Maple Leaf.”

The audience burst into applause.

Hamglaze cleared her throat, dramatically. “Issue One – Was the Maple Festival a success or failure this year? What say you, Mister Jell-O?”

The retired chairman grinned with embarrassment. His portly frame filled the video screen. “Well, Carrie, I’d say it was a success because we showed the strength of our faith and community values, once again!” His oiled, gray locks had already begun to loosen with sweat.

Our host nodded affirmation. “And what’s your spin on this, Cousin Kate?”

Meffler seemed to be embarrassed. Her dress was a rumpled, tie-dye garment dribbled with colors. “Well, I’d say it was a success because one more time, local residents came out despite the weather conditions! The people of Ohio will always overcome adversity, when we have a government that will ensure they are given a fair chance!”

There was a momentary pause while the cameras peered closer at our group.

“And what say you, Mister Iceberg?” Hamglaze squawked, at last.

I had nearly forgotten the question. “Well, I’d say…ummm…”

Hamglaze rapped her pen on the table, with disbelief. “The correct answer is – it was a success because of the maple goodies on sale throughout the weekend!”

The audience cheered, loudly.

“Issue Two!” our host bellowed. “What is the biggest story to happen in Geauga County since Y2K? What say you Lady Katie?”

Meffler adjusted her wire-rimmed glasses. “I think the attempt to paint a stack of pancakes on the water tower in Burton. It was shameless commercialism at its worst.”

Hamglaze chortled. “And what say you, Mister Peanut-Butter-and-Jelski?”

“I think it was the Ferguson sisters’ anti-drug cattle protest during weigh-ins for the upcoming county fair,” he observed. “We need more of our young citizens to speak out against this scourge of society!”

“And, Mister Ice Cube? What say you?” our host warbled.

“Well,” I began. “As a matter of fact…”

“The correct answer is the change in traffic patterns on the Chardon Square,” Hamglaze implored. “What a difference! It was long overdue!”

Again, the audience cheered vociferously.

Hamglaze looked deep into the camera. “Issue Three – What does the unruly presidential race of 2008 mean in Geauga County? What say you, Chairman Sure-Jell??”

Jelski coughed into his fist. “Well, Carrie, I’d say this shows how unstable the Democrat Party really is, in current terms. Can they be trusted to occupy The White House? I think all Geaugans need to consider that question, carefully.”

Our host scribbled on her notepad. “And what say you, Katie-Did?”

Meffler went red. “I think this is symptomatic of the divided America that George Bush has forged in the wake of his eight years in office. His failure has harmed all of us…”

Hamglaze pondered the reply. “And finally, Mister Freeze! What say you about Issue Three?”

I was determined not to be left out of the discussion. My eyes darted toward the camera. “Honestly, this raucous season has helped to revive belief in our democratic system. We’ve had real voters, all over the nation, expressing themselves openly. Taking a sincere interest in the race. Battling to defend their positions in the best American tradition of democracy. Voters have spoken from both sides of the political aisle in a way that does not simply rubber-stamp their party leaders’ preferences. I am glad to see such a boisterous contest for the nation’s highest office!”

Our host was pleased. “The correct answer is – LET THE PEOPLE BE HEARD!”

Jelski and Meffler frowned noticeably. But the audience responded with a standing ovation.

Hamglaze turned toward another camera. Her ending monologue was about to commence. The crowd fell silent with anticipation.

“Thanks so much for watching this poignant discussion,” she said, gratefully. “We are blessed to be able to have such conversations out in the open, where anyone can participate without fear of recrimination. Don’t forget to say a prayer for your leaders, here, in Columbus, and in Washington. And don’t forget to tune in next week, for a new episode of… HAMGLAZE & COMPANY!”

I was glad to be out of the spotlight, at last. My brief interlude of broadcasting fame had come to an end!

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Tuesday, April 22, 2008



Yes, the Madison Skyway hasn't completely surrendered to the elements - yet. The shell of this relic still stands, proudly. It graces the north side of North Ridge
Road (Route 20) with an eerie, yet inviting presence.

After years of driving by the closed venue while traveling between Madison and Geneva, I finally stopped for photographs, and a bit of vintage atmosphere:

A later Internet search failed to reveal much about the outdoor theater. But the website offered two vintage advertisements from the Skyway's storied past:

Also offered was an aerial photo of the closed Skyway grounds, submitted by William Sureck:

My wife has often observed that reviving the Skyway would be something both enjoyable and beneficial to the region. Indeed, we've both read many stories of car shows, concerts, swap meets, and film screenings being held together at drive-in theaters that have survived the march of time.

Place it among a thousand other ideas we couldn't possibly finance... the all new MADISON SKYWAY, featuring a screening of 'The Wild Angels' followed by a performance by Davie Allan and the Arrows!

“Discovery Shop Pit Stop”

c. 2008 Rod Ice
All rights reserved

I’ve written often in this space about my personal adventures at the Discovery Shop in Chardon. Run to benefit the American Cancer Society, the store has long been a favored point for local browsing and bargain hunting. But in recent months, it has evolved beyond simply being a community thrift outpost. Now, it boasts the cheerful décor of a new-to-you boutique.

Visits without a purchase are rare for those of us in the Ice Household. We are dependably able to locate unexpected treasures at this friendly place. A recent pause netted several compact discs for our home library, costing a mere pittance in pocket change:

BILL WYMAN’S RHYTHM KINGS: Double Bill (Koch / KOC-CD 8287) - A joy to discover! This two-disc set features the former Rolling Stones bassist jamming with an all-star roster of performers. Present are Albert Lee, Gary Booker, George Harrison, Chris Rea, Andy Fairweather Low, Martin Taylor, and many other noted musicians. The atmospheric feel here is confident, yet relaxed. Everyone sounds jazzy and blue, with no regrets.

CHARLIE BARNET: Big Bands (TIME-LIFE / TCD 0011/R960-11) – A perfect soundtrack for working at home. These vintage recordings evoke thoughts of black-and-white movies, big-fendered automobiles, and bygone Americana. A native of New York, Barnet became a bandleader known for his prowess on the saxophone. He gained fame in an era populated by musical greats like Count Basie and Duke Ellington. Try not to smile when playing this gem – it can’t be done!

CLEM SNIDE: A Beautiful EP (spinART / SPART 136) – Modernistic, alternative rock. Not so appealing as R.E.M. or They Might Be Giants. But the material here carries an exuberant tone of garage-band sensibility mixed with artistic earnestness. A sincere, if failed, attempt to reach the intensity of Johnathan Richman or Freedy Johnston. Note a cover version of Lou Reed’s ‘I’ll Be Your Mirror’ and a tune that references British songwriting hero Nick Drake.

FRANK BLACK: Teenager of the Year (Elektra / 4ADElektra 61618-2) – A punky and energetic disc. Black is well known for street-level artistry, and a vocal style reminiscent of a panic attack. But the music carries more subtlety than is obvious upon first listening. Black is a crude, but effective composer.

LEVEL 42: (Polydor / 821 935-2) – A successful group, especially in Europe. Their sound is pop and modern jazz. Incredibly, Phil Gould, Mark King and Wally Badarou were once members of M, the collective responsible for the New Wave radio staple ‘Pop Muzik.’

The Discovery Shop visit also yielded a few tasty slabs of vintage vinyl during our walk-through. Included were familiar relics of ‘Baby Boom’ culture that were a pleasure to find:

BILLY ‘CRASH’ CRADDOCK: (Capitol / ST-11758) – From the cover photo, Craddock works his best faux-Elvis mojo here. In fact, he delivers a rousing version of ‘Jailhouse Rock’ with all the swaggering southern pride inherent in the original version. He embodies the redneck energy of down-home music, with a Rock edge that predates the current trend toward commercialized Country recordings.

MARK LINDSAY: Arizona (Columbia / CS 9986) – After leading Paul Revere and the Raiders to great success in the 1960’s, Lindsay embarked on a profitable, but short-lived solo career. This album is notable for its inclusion of ‘Sunday Mornin’ Comin’ Down’ which was written by Kris Kristofferson, and made popular by Johnny Paycheck.

ROLF HARRIS: The Original Tie Me Kangaroo Down Sport & Sun Arise (Epic / BN 26053) – This is the classic offering from Harris, an early hero of Australian music. Long before AC/DC, he brought the world a taste of down-under culture. His memorable ‘Kangaroo’ has become a staple of novelty collections, around the world.

SONNY AND THE EAGLES: Everybody Monkey (United Artists / UAL 3311) – In the Golden Age of Rock ‘n’ Roll, a simple dance craze could spawn recordings from coast to coast. Often they were knock-off albums intended to generate quick revenue from a minimal artistic investment. But this LP is better than most. The cover even features a series of photographs intended to demonstrate the dance itself. As the liner notes say… “Charles Darwin was sure that man was descended from the monkey but it’s a safe bet that he never imagined that one day the teen-agers would dance like one.”

CITI: Roller Disco (De-Lite / DSR 9515) – This is another attempt to sell records based on the fleeting popularity of a teen craze. Roller Disco must have lasted about three minutes in the national consciousness. Yet Lee Genesis, Nadine Bracey, and Shirley Dixon seemed to reckon that their own take on the fad would last a bit longer. Though this record ended up in a cutout bin (an ugly hole is punched in its jacket) the platter retains value as evidence of how the industry evolved from Hippie abandon to slick commercialism throughout the 1970’s.

The treasures listed here would have been enough to satisfy our collector’s desires. But the load of affordable goodies even included a pair of 8-track tapes:

TODAY’S SUPER GREATS: Original Hits Original Stars (K-tel / 8ST-1) – In 1973, the world was very different from today. No one laughed at the idea of having Cher, Donny Osmond and Sammy Davis, Jr. on an album with The Raspberries and Derek & the Dominos. And people actually bought slick, low-buck compilations from K-tel International, like this…

YOUR PARADE OF15 HITS OF THE 50’s: (Pickwick / P8-1211) – In the 70’s, there was a wave of interest in Doo-Wop culture, thanks to the success of American Graffiti, Grease, and Happy Days. This collection features many popular songs from that period, including Charlie Brown, Witch Doctor, Bye Bye Love, Tequila, and Wake up Little Susie.

Admittedly, every trip to the Discovery Shop has been different for us – sort of like spinning a roulette wheel as part of a charity auction. We’ve managed to come home with books, framed art, clothing, glassware, vintage electronics, and even furniture after looking around the store. But each pause has been worthwhile. Not only for goods to buy, but for conversation with the friendly staff of volunteers.
The only question that has gone unanswered is… what will we find, next?

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Friday, April 11, 2008


I've driven through Mantua many times since moving back to Ohio in 1983. But never has time permitted a real visit to this sleepy community on Route 44. With each drive-through I've wondered - what really waits to be discovered there?

A recent trip answered this persistent question. I drove south on a Wednesday afternoon, with a fresh camera at the ready. After reaching the village, I turned left off of Main Street, and parked at the bottom of a hill, below the Mantua Grain & Supply depot.

Then, magic began. I felt like a time traveler, lost in a forgotten world...

My first photo in Mantua - entering the time portal

Mantua Grain & Supply, long closed but fully preserved

A weathered building, downhill from Main Street

A doorway at Mantua Grain & Supply

A vintage pickup in front of Betsy's Side Street Cafe & Grill

Another view of the gray, wood building

Another doorway at Mantua Grain & Supply - with no trespassing sign

Concrete walls from an old building foundation

A lone Harley-Davidson on Main Street, in front of the K & K Meat Shoppe

Italiano's Pizza on Main Street (Route 44)

Italiano's (entrance)

An official-style brick building, uphill on Prospect Street

The Storybook House (wide view)

The Storybook House (closer view)

A very grand Victorian home

Brick Victorian house on the hillside

Looking down Prospect Avenue toward Main Street

I want to visit Mantua again, in the summer, and try this experiment again. There are more stories on the hill, I'm sure. When the time portal is ready... I'll be there.

“Prime Time Recipes”

c. 2008 Rod Ice
All rights reserved

Spring fever had me busy in the Icehouse home office. After inheriting new file cabinets from my mother-in-law, I had begun to organize a pile of books, vinyl records, and literature that accumulated over the winter. I was a task that required honest dedication. And, a fresh pot of Colombian coffee.

The pile had almost disappeared when Liz, my wife, arrived home from work. As always, she was a vision in pink. But today, the hue of her outfit seemed brighter. I shielded my eyes from the glow as she danced through our front door. Her heels tapped out a Morse Code greeting across the kitchen.

“Rodneyyyyy!” she sang with a twirl.

I tried to deflect her view from my project. “Almost finished in there, honey. Would you like a cup of coffee?”

She stopped spinning abruptly. “Oh, good! Let me see your workspace!”

I bowed while gesturing toward the desk. “The right-hand tower is made of our new cabinets. I stacked them to save room. It matches my four-drawer file on the left.”

Liz chewed her lip. “Hmmmm. So did you get rid of anything?”

My face reddened. “Well, no…but I successfully organized the mess…”

She sighed.

“At least everything is sorted now,” I boasted. “Plus, I discovered a few things that disappeared last fall…”

My wife nodded with resignation. “We really need a bigger house!”

“True,” I agreed. “So… are you ready to make an audition tape for ‘Deal or No Deal?’”

Her brunette curls flew wildly. She pointed a finger in the air. “What happened to selling our books?”

“Okay, forget Howie Mandel. I’ll wear my denim overalls, and we can hawk our material on the Jerry Springer program.” I said.

She stomped her heel. “Never! Stop being such a poo!!!”

Suddenly, my makeshift library stack collapsed. A cascade of printed volumes spilled through the doorway.

Liz gasped as a cookbook slid under her shoe. She danced on one foot to keep from crushing it into the floor. “Hey, what is this?”

“That’s something new,” I explained. “It’s called ‘The Fruit of the Spirit’ – a collection of recipes to benefit Tim’s House.”

She smiled while reaching for the book. “Really? What a great idea!”

“They even included a few of my own concoctions,” I cheered.

My wife skimmed through the publication. “This is so cool… a perfect way to raise funds to help those affected by a loss to suicide…”

I agreed. “It’s a useful keepsake. Fun to have, and fun to share. With a message that needs to be carried across America.”

Liz paused in silent reflection, while flipping pages. Then, enlightenment made her chirp. “This is it, Rodney! Our recipe for success, so to speak…”

I frowned. “What??”

“We could do this ourselves,” she exclaimed. “An Icehouse cookbook! Rural vittles from a hillbilly wordsmith!”

“Hey!” I protested. “Who are you calling a hillbilly, Miss Haybale? I’m not the fan of Trace Adkins!”

She danced around the room. “We’ll call it ‘Cooking with Chef Rodney.’ Better days, here we come!!”

After reassembling my pile, I got a fresh cup of coffee. My wife’s cookbook idea was inescapable. It continued to reverberate inside my brain. In only a few minutes, I had remembered a half-dozen meal plans from bygone days. My wife’s proposal had been a precious glimmer of inspiration:



1 can of Vienna Sausages
½ cup of frying mix for chicken or fish
1 egg

Break egg; pour into bowl and whisk with a fork. In another bowl, pour the fry mix. Coat sausages individually with egg; roll in the fry mix. Make sure to coat evenly. Drop in hot oil; fry until golden brown. (It doesn’t take long.) Enjoy!


1 cup of instant grits
3 cups water
3 tbsp. butter
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
½ cup diced tomatoes
¼ cup chopped onion

Gently fry onions and tomatoes; set aside.
Mix dry grits and water; prepare as indicated on package. Stir butter into cooked grits. Spoon onto serving plate, top with onions & tomatoes, then shredded cheese to taste.


1 pound bacon
2 refrigerated pie crusts (top & bottom)
1 can condensed cream of celery soup
1 16 oz. bag frozen mixed vegetables
1 can sliced potatoes
1 medium onion

Preheat oven at 350 degrees F; press bottom crust into pie dish. Bake lightly. Meanwhile, cut and fry bacon strips; chop and fry onion; cook sliced potatoes in skillet; set these ingredients aside. Prepare frozen vegetables as indicated on package. Mix these with condensed soup and other ingredients. Spoon into dish. Top with second crust. Continue baking for 30 minutes or until golden brown.


1 cup buttermilk
1 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 egg
1 tablespoon butter
1 medium green pepper
1 medium onion
1 can SPAM

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Cube SPAM; chop and gently fry with onion and pepper; set aside. Melt butter in cast iron skillet; coat evenly. Mix dry ingredients; add buttermilk and egg. Blend in the SPAM, pepper, and onion. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until golden brown.

A day later, I showed my recipes to Liz, after dinner. Her reaction was immediate.

“Don’t you have any healthy dishes to include?” she said with disbelief.

“What do you mean?” I smirked. “Like a tofu and lettuce salad?”

She shivered. “It wouldn’t hurt to offer some better alternatives!”

“Okay,” I groaned. “How about cottage cheese with bean sprouts, kiwi fruit, and pomegranate dressing? Yes mam, I’d rather have that than Buffalo wings!”

“You’ve always got to be such a rebel!” she complained.

“How about green tomatoes and yogurt with a garnish of roasted sunflower seeds?” I continued.

“You’re being extreme!” she whined.

“Not at all,” I replied. “It’d be great to munch on bamboo shoots and drink prune tea. Maybe I’ll eat broiled grape leaves for dessert! Yee haw!”

Her face went red. But she was laughing!

“Okay, okayyy! Never mind the Icehouse cookbook,” Liz said, at last. “Dig out our camcorder. We’ll make that video for Howie, after all!”

NOTE: ‘The Fruit of the Spirit’ cookbook is now available from Tim’s House, in Chardon, for a donation of ten dollars. Call 440-286-HOPE for further information.

POSTSCRIPT – Congratulations to City Councilperson Mary Bramstedt on being elected Chairman of the Chardon Charter Commission.

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“Moving Right Along”

c. 2008 Rod Ice
All rights reserved

Note to Readers: Some like to chase wild game, in the woods. Others enjoy fishing for the elusive ‘big catch.’ But there are a few of us who find pleasure in a different sort of hunting – the kind that involves discovering vinyl records, oddball books, and desirable trinkets…

I was in the midst of a quiet trip to The American Cancer Society’s Discovery Shop, on Cherry Street in Chardon. New items sparkled from every corner. While scouring the store for bargains, I shared small talk with store manager Margie Crowe about the approach of spring. Collectable glassware, books, vintage appliances, and clothes were plentiful as ever in the local emporium. But my hands were empty! Somehow, I’d remained immune to the lure of second-hand treasures throughout an entire visit. It was a puzzling occurrence.

Then, I entered their final room of castaway goodies. Situated deep in the maze, it held bulging racks of old audio equipment, vinyl record albums, and compact discs.

One-dollar compact discs!

The first prize I touched was ‘Double Bill’ by Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings. It featured the former Rolling Stones bassist with several noted musicians, including George Harrison.

Moments later, I went to the register with an armload of digital recordings, and two 8-track tapes for good measure. It was a collector’s score worth celebrating!

On the way home, I paused at our mailbox. Inside was a wad of bills… and yet another CD! This disc offered the lure of more than simple entertainment, however. It had come from the West Coast – an advance copy of the new Davie Allan & The Arrows release, ‘Moving Right Along.’

Raising my index finger, I cheered.

“Thank you, King Fuzz!”

Suddenly, my focus shifted. I popped the tiny platter into my computer, took out a notepad, and began to scribble track by track comments. It made for a spur-of-the-moment review that I couldn’t wait to share:

MOVING RIGHT ALONG – Davie Allan and the Arrows


1. SLIP-STREAM – Sunrise wakes the morning. Bolder and back in gear, taking a highway ride on a tricked-out guitar with chrome tuners, double-wound pickups and a slingblade riff shot from the cosmos. Fingers fly over a fretboard slab cut from the bedrock of Charlie Christian and Joe Maphis. It is good to be King.

2. SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME – Strike up the carnival! A new bandmaster waves his electric baton, and the children crawl from their shells. Hatched amid the ruins, they run for redemption in the acid rain. The aural rainbow is their sign. Echo sparks split the air into molecules of overdrive and distortion. The plectrum god speaks from on high and his offspring are free. “It is done!”

3. FRUSTRATION – Doing the barroom crawl after a long night feeding the fuzzbox with pureed jams from an American International Picture. Drooling half-digested vinyl grooves into a psychedelic puddle of tie-dye and chewed-up Fender strings. Heads around the saloon bobble in time to the rhythm. The road to oblivion is clear. Twist the throttle, ye brave hearts.

4. HEARTACHE – A ballad born of hope. The wind is changing. I don’t wanna be lonely/don’t need to/don’t have to/don’t dwell in surrender… except of my heart to yours. Believe me.

5. VANISHING BREED – The outlaw brave is in motion while the moon rules its kingdom. Darkness gives comfort to the hero. Swiftly, he runs. From mountain to valley - from fret to fret along the tonal ridge.. The raven and hawk marvel at his speed. Fingersteps leave a trail of sweat and twang. Hear his war cry offered up as a blessing to the sky. Vengeance is mine!

6. LISTEN TO THE GUITAR MAN – A kiss for the weary troubadour. Lazily shuffling through the desert, toward town. A taste of rainwater revives his spirit. Watch him crouch like a medicine man, suspended on Jazzmaster strings! He has come to praise the wandering tribe. Duane Eddy, Nokie Edwards, Dick Dale, and Link Wray. Blood brothers all, bound by the amped-up spirit of yore. VUs clatter against their pegs. Let the healing commence!

7. BONGO PARTY – Tap the drum skins, and chant. Speak a poetic refrain from the Harley-Davidson service manual, copyright 1969. Life and love and grease and grit, skin and blood and oil and spit. Dancing on the tabletops. The jukebox smeared with stale beer and cigarette ash. But it never sounded so pure. This is the absolution of a sidewalk guitar preacher. Rock ‘n’ Roll will never die!

8. MOVING RIGHT ALONG – Gliding along the coast. Chopper pulses matched to human heartbeats. Surf sands blow far from the shore. But the ritual ride is unbroken. Onward, these chrome soldiers ride! A mystery tour, borne on spinning hoops of vulcanized rubber. Blessed by garage saints in grimy robes of denim. Their prayer wheels turn with ceaseless supplication. Moving, always moving on…

9. MOOD SWING – What was her name? The sky keeps its secret with silent, starry lips locked in a tight embrace. Memories wait, just out of reach. Her face is in the clouds. Speak the name, my prophet! A bugle calls. But I am not ready to hear. The moment is past, for now. Suddenly, my concentration has vanished. I am on another plane.

10. SHE’S CRYING TOO – Tears shared through sacrifice. What is done can never be reclaimed. Yet ghosts of forgotten purpose remain. I see it in her eyes. Recognition and a glimmer of faded desire. Her hands clasp a memento of the day, stained with loss. The last bell has sounded. My heart retreats…

11. STICK IT – Sassy, strutting and given to mockery. Watch the warrior in metamorphosis. From bloodletting and rebellion to an art painted in teasing hues of satire. Gesture and hop. Heelspin and fingerpoint till the music stops. Take your piety, your righteousness, your self-importance - and place them in a vessel fit for safekeeping. Go high and hard, foolish one. The last word is for you!

12. RESTLESS IN L.A. – Still not satisfied. Ever searching through city streets and fuzzy star clusters unto oblivion. A restless drifter with notes scribbled on the back of a shopping bag. Pawn shop instruments at the ready, rescued from obscurity and misfortune among relics of household collapse. Urban seekers fail, yet the way goes forward. There is no honor among the lost. It is time to run!

13. GHOST RIDERS IN THE SKY – Spirits rise from the mud. Twisting, twirling bravado rendered in the ether. They are the essence of toil and conflict. Their beasts carry the scars of a thousand conquests. Yet in their stead are we… the living. Our existence is shaped in their image. Their blood made us whole. So we testify with an oath carried on soaring, electric wings. Cowboys, hear your children! Our gratitude is for you.

14. MOVING RIGHT ALONG (REPRISE) – An orange sun dips below the horizon. This is the moment of decision. To ride, or relent? One must choose with care. The sparrow’s eye blinks northward. And from that pledge, hope is born. The trail has not ended. We roll into the evening, and beyond. Juggling chords over the steaming tarmac. Our escape is complete. We are moving in harmony, forevermore.

Another writer had already been tapped to provide liner notes for the new recording. But Davie accepted my submission cheerfully. Once again, this iconic guitarist had musically spanned the distance from Los Angeles to Cleveland!

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