Monday, April 04, 2022

Guard This: Now Available in Paperback, Plus Mixes

 Los Angeles, CA

Thanks for waiting three plus months for the paperback release of Guard This. Yes, the print version is finally here after Guard This debuted as an ebook on Christmas Eve. I appreciate everyone who bought the ebook, especially those of you who read it! If you're a Luddite and were waiting for the paperback version, then here's your chance to get your own physical copy.

What is Guard This? It's a novelized memoir that takes place in NYC in 1994-95.

Here's the book description:

Guard This depicts New York City's art community during the last vestiges of gritty Gotham in the 1990s. Tenzin McGrupp takes a security job at the most famous art museum in the world while he saves up money for film school. He's welcomed into an enclave of painters, musicians, photographers, nonconformists, and freaks that hold day jobs as museum guards to fund their late-night creative endeavors and drug-addled antics. The guards are defiant artists at the dawn of the new millennium before every nook of the City is gobbled up by corporations and transformed into a capitalist theme park.

All of my other books are available as paperbacks or ebooks: Fried Peaches, Lost Vegas, or Jack Tripper Stole My Dog.


I curated different musical playlists to help market the new novel. You can listen to any of them in the background while reading Guard This, or listen to it before you crack open the book to help set the mood. Some of these Guard This mixes are great stand-alone playlists that many friends crank up for their morning commute or pre-party situations.

There's a trio of playlists that represent the soundtrack for Guard This if it were to ever become a film or limited TV series. In creating those initial playlists, I tried to use only music that was released prior to 1995, or stuff that I actually listened to 27 years ago.

Guard This 1.0 (aka Act 1)... Talking Heads, Radiohead, Lenny Kravitz, Black Crowes, Pearl Jam, Beastie Boys, Tribe Called Quest, Soundgarden, Phish, Blind Melon, Stone Temple Pilots, Wu-Tang Clan

Guard This 2.0 (aka Act 2)... INXS, Jimi Hendriz, David Bowie, Warren Zevon, Jungle Brothers, Primal Scream, Tom Petty, Blur, Sonny Rollins, Beck, Morphine

Guard This 3.0 (aka Act 3)... Elliot Smith, Drivin N Cryin, Bill Evans, Luna, Tom Waits, Gomez, Television, Steely Dan, Mazzy Star, Funkadelic, Ween, Widespread Panic, Velvet Underground

I also curated character mixes, or mixtapes that each character from Guard This would make if you gave them a blank tape in 1995. Yes, these are the names of some of the main characters and you can catch a glimpse into their headspace by listening to their mixtapes and music that they had access to in 1995. Hey, I did not really make these... the characters crafted each mixtape themselves.

Tenzin McGrupp... Maceo Parker, Bob Dylan, REM, NWA, Traffic, Grateful Dead, Curtis Mayfield, Dandy Warhols, Allman Brothers, Phish, Mojo Nixon, Shuggie Otis, Supertramp

Izabella... Digable Planets, Los Amigos Invisibles, Brick, Fugees, The Cure, Sly & the Family Stone, Queen Latifah, Arrested Development, The Breeders, Belly, D'Aneglo, Luscious Jackson, Liz Phair, Mary J Blige, Pulp, Dee Lite

Cube... Jaco Pastorious, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Doobie Brothers, David Bowie, The Pixies, Stone Roses, The Cars, Phil Collins, Captain Beefheart, Roxy, Jan Hammer, The Beatles, ELO, Big Audio Dynamite, Beastie Boys, Beck

Jazzman... Kenny Burrell, Dexter Gordon, Miles Davis, Art Blakey, Herbie Hancock, Wes Montgomery, John Coltrane, Thelonious Monk, Ornette Coleman, Sonny Rollins, Lee Morgan, Willie Bobo, Billie Holiday

Zelia... Air, Giorgio Moroder, Serge Gainsbourg, Jacqus Dutronc, Tom Waits, Rickie Lee Jones, Johnny Hallday, Les Merseys, Charlotte Leslie, Portishead, The Wailers, L'Imperatrice, Daft Punk, Garbage, Michel Sardou, 10,000 Maniacs

Rabbi Hoffman... Grateful Dead, Jerry Garcia Band

Now that Guard This is out in a physical and digital form, it's time to get back to work on the second draft of The Kicker.

Friday, December 24, 2021

Guard This: New Novel

 Los Angeles, CA


Guard This is my third novel and fourth overall book that I wrote and published since 2010. Guard This is now available as an e-book. Stay tuned for information on a print version and paperback, which is due out in early 2022.

What is Guard This?

Here's the book description:

Guard This depicts New York City's art community during the last vestiges of gritty Gotham in the 1990s. Tenzin McGrupp takes a security job at the most famous art museum in the world while he saves up money for film school. He's welcomed into an enclave of painters, musicians, photographers, nonconformists, and freaks that hold day jobs as museum guards to fund their late-night creative endeavors and drug-addled antics. The guards are defiant artists at the dawn of the new millennium before every nook of the City is gobbled up by corporations and transformed into a capitalist theme park.

Guard This is a project that I started over 25 years ago. It had so many variations and formats that it's hard to keep up. It started out as a screenplay. Then a comic book. Then a novel. Then a stage play. Back to a novel. Then a series of short stories. Back to a screenplay. Then a limited series. Flirted with an animated series. And now, back to a novel.

The current novel version of Guard This came together quickly and almost by accident. In April of 2021, I blocked out a couple of weeks to work on rewriting a second draft of a project called The Kicker, which I penned at the end of 2020. After sitting on a shelf for the customary 90 days, I read The Kicker for the first time in three months and realized I did not have enough time to fix all the problems and rewrite a second draft. I still set aside two weeks without anything to work on, so I decided to give Guard This another pass. It had been 18 years since I last told a version of this story, but was surprised ho quickly the first draft of a the new novel wrote itself.

It took me five years to write Lost Vegas. Took me another five to work on Fried Peaches. It might take me five years to finish The Kicker. But, I didn't have five years to work on Guard This. Call it laziness, or just PTSD from the pandemic, but I didn't have the patience to hold this story back. I'm starting a major project in 2022 and just don't have the time to devote to a prolonged process of re-writing and editing and re-writing Guard This. I convinced myself to put out a less than desirable version of it out now, than let it grind away at my insomnia until 2025. Instead of five years, I gave this project less than five months time from start to finish.

Guard This will eventually become a paperback version in the Spring of 2022. For now, it's an e-book while I accumulate all the typos and errors that I missed to rush this version out before Christmas. I'll thank you in advance when you catch something. As soon as I successfully crowdsource all those typos, I'll convert Guard This to a print version in a couple of months. I promise that it won't take three years in between e-book > print conversion like what happened with Fried Peaches, which finally became a paperback in October 2021.

I appreciate your assistance, support, and understanding. You can purchase your e-book of Guard This here. You do not have to own a Kindle to read it. Your phone or tablet has a Kindle app that makes it easy to read. If you're a Luddite and detest e-books or Kindles, then grab one of my other paperbacks: Fried Peaches, Lost Vegas, or Jack Tripper Stole My Dog.

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Fried Peaches: Print Version Now Available

 Los Angeles, CA

The print version of Fried Peaches novel is currently available. Buy a print copy here. If you read the e-book version, here's your first chance to fondle a print copy of Fried Peaches.

If you've been waiting three-plus years for a print version, I appreciate your patience. The moment has arrived for all of you Luddites and old-school book purists.

I curated a special Spotify playlist for Fried Peaches as an accompanying soundtrack to listen along in the background while you read it. It's three different playlists broken down into three acts with 33 songs on each playlist. Check out the Fried Peaches playlists here: Act 1, Act 2, Act 3.


Q. Why did Fried Peaches print version take so long? 

A. Laziness. That's the quick, quirky, and pithy answer. 


Q. Seriously, why?

A. The real answer is a little more complicated. I had the opportunity to work with an old friend on a new project in the fall of 2018 and didn't have time to convert the e-book to a print version. In 2019, I was simply too lazy to get it done. In 2020 the pandemic hit and I didn't think anyone gave a shit about a book I wrote two years prior that takes place in 2015. Since late 2020, I cranked out two new manuscripts including something I hope to publish soon as an e-book.


Q. When does the next novel come out?

A. I wrote a new novel titled Guard This about my experiences working at the Metropolitan Museum of Art as my first job out of college. It's also a period piece about the 1990s art scene in New York City. Keep your fingers crossed for a late December release of Guard This. The e-book should be available before Christmas, at least that's the current plan. I promise that the print version of Guard This will not take three years before it's available. I'm eying a print release for Spring 2022.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

The Summer Jams Series

Los Angeles

About six years ago, Lawn Memo contacted me out of the blue. He was familiar with my Phish writing and asked me to pen a guest post on his site The Daily Ghost. I was well aware of his pet project... a blog devoted to recapping and reviewing every live performance of Ghost by Phish. I met a significant amount of music nerds in my day, but The Daily Ghost was the tip of the Phish-geek iceberg. I eventually met Lawn Memo while walking into a show at The Gorge many moons ago. I recognized him because he wore a bicycle helmet. It was his shtick and a good one because out of all the weird shit people wore to Phish shows, no one wore a bike helmet.

I first started writing for The Daily Ghost in 2013 when Lawn Memo asked me if I would be interested in writing about one of my favorite jams from one of the San Francisco shows from the previous summer tour. I said no problem, and cranked out something about Simple from 8/18/12.

Every summer since then, Memo tapped me to write about a different show and my favorite jam from that night. His latest installment has been published... 21 in 21 of 2017... which covers the best of the best jams that Phish played in the summer of 2017, including their kickass run at MSG for the Bakers Dozen shows.

Lawn Memo gave me first crack at picking a show from the Bakers Dozen. I saw all 13, but picked the Strawberry Donut show, or Night 2 of 13 because I actually saw most of the show with memo. we sat behind the stage and hilarity ensued. We also caught a badass cover of Shuggie Otis' Starwbery Letter 23, which fit the theme of Strawberry Donut night.

Check out my contribution, which I subtitled Chekov's Strawberry Gun and Page's New Palate.

Memo hosts an annual series on the best summer jams and I've been fortunate enough to write about a show from the last six summers. I've mostly covered west coast show. I guess you can call me Memo's West Coast beat reporter... covering shows in San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco, The Gorge, and Denver.

Last summer, I got to write about that gnarly jammed out Tube from Chula Vista, CA.

Here's an index of my contributions to The Daily Ghost...
7/22/17 Bakers Dozen Night 2 - MSG, NYC - MOMA Dance
7/23/16 Chula Vista, CA - TUBE
7/25/15 L.A. Forum - No Man's Land
8/30/14 Dick's, Colorado - Carini > Light
7/26/13 The Gorge, WA - Crosseyed > Twist > Steam
8/18/12 San Francisco, CA - Simple
LawnMemo is not just the President, he's also a client! Memo contributed to his own series. Read his heady take on Bakers Dozen Night 8, which also happened to be his 100th show.

If you're interested in the best Phish jams from last year, check out Summer Jams Series from 2017 which includes some of your favorite Twitter personalities and Phishy writers.

And if you haven't checked out the infamous Daily Ghost, then what are you waiting for?

Monday, June 11, 2018

Fried Peaches: Available at Midnight 6.12.18

Fried Peaches is here. The ebook drops at Midnight ET on 6-12-18. Yes, that's tonight.

The print version will be published in November 2018. For updates on the print version, follow @PeachesNovel on Twitter or @FriedPeachesBook on Instagram.

For now, enjoy the e-book version. You do not have to own a Kindle to read it. Simply download the app for your device. You can also read it via your laptop/desktop.

I created a soundtrack, or special mixes as a companion to the novel. Three Mixes. The Fried Peaches mixes can be found on either Spotify or YouTube (same mix, just different channels).

Spotify Mixes: Fried Peaches, Act 1 - Fried Peaches, Act 2 - Fried Peaches, Act 3

YouTube Mixes: Act 1 - Act 2 - Act 3

Friday, June 08, 2018

Fried Peaches: The Mixes

Los Angeles, CA

I write to music all day long. I watch 90% of sports on MUTE and listen to music instead of going on mega-tilt from moronic announcers. Music is the soundtrack to the majority of my daily life activities.

I curated three mixes for Fried Peaches. 99 songs. 3 mixes. 33 songs on each. You can find them on Spotify and/or YouTube.

You can call these mixes a soundtrack if you want. Each mix fits in with a specific segment of Fried Peaches. To simply things, I titled the mixes: Act 1, Act 2, and Act 3. I'd recommend listening to each corresponding act while reading the book to enhance the overall experience.

These mixes can be enjoyed any old way. Stand alone or with Peaches. Listen on shuffle. Listen out of order. Listen to one. Listen to none.

I had fun whipping up each mix, yet faced a nightmare trimming down the entire set to 99 songs. At one point I had over 350 songs, before I diced that down to 200 or so. Yeah, at least 100 songs missed the final cut. Perhaps I'll release those in a couple of months titled Peaches Deep Cuts.
Mix 1, Act 1 is heavy on the 1990s and late 20th Century nostalgia... Beastie Boys, Soundgarden, Screaming Trees, Pixies, A Tribe Called Quest, Mother Love Bone, Drivin N Cryin, Mazzy Star, Stone Roses, Garbage, The Black Crowes, Gomez, Sublime, Oasis, Veruca Salt, TAD, Stone Temple Pilots, The Gits, Luna, Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Polyphonic Spree, Huey Lewis and the News, INXS, James Brown, Dana Imanuel, Big Star, Bowie, Rolling Stones, Eagles of Death Metal, The Beatles, LCD Soundsystem, and Greensky Bluegrass.

Mix 2, Act 2 is the drugs/party mix. It starts out with a coke bender then goes full blown UNTZ.... Curtis Mayfield, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Sturgill Simpson, Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five, Future, Dr. Hook, JJ Cale, Pharcyde, Phish, Queens of the Stone Age, Fleetwood Mac, Johnny Cash, Grateful Dead, Rainbow Kitten Surprise, Blind Melon, Juno What?!, Kraftwerk, YAMN, Moving Matter, Daft Punk, Brick, The Bar-Kays, Tosca, TJR, Opiuo, The Rolling Stones, Talking Heads, and LCD Soundsystem, STS9, and Turkuaz.

Mix 3, Act 3 is an everything bagel.. Tom Petty, Mojo Nixon, Dylan, Talking Heads, Radiohead, Maggie Koerner, Traffic, The Go-Go's, Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, Foxygen, Blind Melon, Albert Hammond, Television, Art Blakey & Jazz Messengers, Colleen, Mazzy Star, Meco, Kenny Rogers, Golden Smog, Bikini Kill, Wilco, Ana Tijoux, Divinyls, Dana Imanuel, Bowie, The Cars, Cardi B, Kim Wilde, Shuggie Otis, LCD Soundsystem, Pink Floyd, and Bomba Estereo.
There's an actual theme to Mix 3/Act 3, but I'm being vague on purpose. After you read the last 1/3 of the book, you'll see the obvious connection between those 33 songs and the storyline.

Here are the Spotify links: Fried Peaches, Act 1 - Fried Peaches, Act 2 - Fried Peaches, Act 3.

If you don't have a Spotify account, then head over to You Tube.

And follow @PeachesNovel on Twitter for an upcoming release date.