Sunday, December 18, 2011

An apology

One thing that was brought to my attention yesterday was that in my moment of anger ( never write something when you are angry) I did bring others into my rant that had absolutely nothing to do with Ed King's statement. Most importantly. Lynyrd Skynyrd.

My taste in music is very limited. It includes "Trane. Miles, The Yardbird, Herbie and many others from the field of  Jazz. Mozart. Beethoven, Richard Strauss, Debussey and Ravel and numerous other composers of orchestral music. I simply do not listen to those who would be considered my peers.

I am not a fan of Skynyrd's but that is simply one man's opinion. I will not deny that they did make their contribution to the musical canon and that they do deserve respect and their place in the history of music as such.

I hereby extend my deepest and humblest apologies for including them in my angry rant aimed at Ed King. They were not in any way complicit in his statements and, as far as I know, they have had no interaction with him for a very long time.

Guys. I am sorry.

As for my statement about Sarah Palin ( although it had absolutely nothing to do with Ed King's crap) that stands. She has had far more than her 15 minutes and she is heading back to Alaska with the millions she made playing the part of a potential presidential candidate.



  1. Yeah Butch you are right on the money about Palin. She and Trump were never going to run for president. It was all about the money. Did some checking on Ed King. One of the founding members of Strawberry Alarm Clock in LA in 1965 and in 1967 they had a number one single "Incense and Peppermints" (to me an awful song)which King wrote. In 1968 Lynyrd Skynyrd opened several shows for Strawberry Alarm Clock just before that band failed to continue as a successful act. In 1972 when Skynyrd finally got a record deal and was working on their first album, bass player Leon Wilkerson suddenly quit the band and Ed King was called to finish the album as a bass player. But before the picture of the band on the album cover was taken, Wilkerson returned and he and King are in the picture and the band let King switch to his normal role as a guitar player and the band then had THREE lead guitar players. Three years later King suddenly left the band in 1975. (I remember reading that in Cream and Rolling Stone magazines. If I remember correctly, the band was in Richmond, Va and King failed to show for the gig and they didn't know where he was for sometime. He later surfaced back in LA and said he just couldn't take being in that band anymore and Van Zant was quoted as saying he would kick King's ass if he ever saw him again.) King was replaced by Steve Gaines as they wanted to keep a three lead guitar attack. Then of course the plane crash and Gaines,Lead singer Ronnie Van Zant ( and I always thought he tried to sound like Gregg Allman) and others were killed. King was asked to join the new version of the band after Skynyrd had been idle for years with Ronnie's brother as lead singer but left again in 1996 due to heart problems with the understanding when his health was better, he would return. When King was ready, the band voted to refuse his return and he was locked out. King now considers himself retired at age 62.

    So it seems even Lynyrd Skynyrd doesn't want Ed King around. And King's comments about Tom Dowd are absurd, wrong and stupid. King's remarks about Dowd are so silly that if would be the same if Butch Trucks posted on his blog here that Buddy Rich wasn't worth a shit as a drummer!!

    I was never a huge Skynyrd fan. Too much of that rebel flag/redneck thing for me. Plus while I like some of their songs, the musicianship was NOT in the same league with the Allman Brothers' original line up or the Chuck Leavell/Larmar Williams/Brothers and Sisters version of the band that I also saw dozens of times after Duane and Berry were killed. But I did see them live back in the 70's three times as opening acts for other groups. Jeff Beck at a football stadium, Z. Z. Top at another football stadium in a different town and The Allman Brother in 1974 at the Atlanta baseball stadium. They were okay but at the Jeff Beck show they seemed drunk and played a bit sloppy but loud and often played very fast but too repetitive (like the long guitar solos of Free Bird on the album). But it was cool when Ronnie Van Zant, lead singer, dedicated "Free Bird" to Duane Allman and Berry Oakely.

    Also I remember reading an interview with Dowd just after the Fillmore album came out and he WAS in control of that album. He even told Duane Allman that the horn players the band was using as sidemen at the time had to go. On Liz Reed for example, I'm pretty sure I remember Dowd saying that Dickey's solo and Duane's solo are from different shows and he spliced the two shows together to get the best of both guitar players on the same track. I could be wrong as it's been about 40 years ago but I clearly remember Dowd's disapproval of the horn players.

    1. Hey dude...wipe your nose. Too much Trucks shit running down...

    2. Trump was never going to run for President? Once again, history proves who is the fool!

    3. Ed King? Dude "sold" one of his guitars to Ronnie's lady for her cafe. SOLD her his guitar. That's just cheap shit. Business maybe but what a sack of shit

  2. Here is a quote that was written for people like Sarah Palin, Donald Trump and Ed King.

    We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid.
    -Benjamin Franklin

  3. Butch, I think it's a really bad sign for Western Civilization when so many people apologize for no reason. The ABB are artists, LS are moderately skilled craftsmen at best, and we both know that history will reflect that. Don't be sorry when you're right.

    1. anyone who doset think ronnie van-zant was an artist is revealing their total stupidity!!!

  4. Butch I appreciated reading your response to Ed King's assanine opinion of Father Dowd. And I don't think you should have to apologize. If anyone should apologize it is Ed King for all the nasty garbage he said of Father Dowd, and God needs to apologize to all of humanity for having invented someone like Ed King.

    I went to read his forum and discovered that the few words you read from Ed King about Father Dowd was just a few that pertained to the Allman Brothers. Ed King's forum is loaded with negative nasty comments from Ed putting down Father Dowd.

    Again, thank you so very much for speaking the truth!

  5. Hi Butch,

    I suppose it isn't a good idea to post when one is angry as the anger can sometimes be misdirected. That said, I've been pretty angry at the political situation in this country, and I don't see that anger abating anytime soon. I've channeled most of that anger into participating in the Occupy movement, specifically at the Occupy Los Angeles encampment until it was shut down recently, and also at some of the marches we've had since the eviction from City Hall park.

    While I voted for Obama in 2008, and have never and would never voted for the GOPhers (or not any GOPher I've ever encountered, anyway) I also do not see myself voting again for Obama, as I find the lesser of evils argument just always heading us in the wrong direction.

    So specifically, I've found the Obama administration, from its economic team representing Wall St., and Goldman Sachs et al., to its escalation of the wars in Afghanistan and into Pakistan, in Libya and other countries in Africa, Yemen etc, not to mention the refusal to prosecute war crimes and the crimes of the banksters, well I could go on, but I think you get the idea...

    Anyway, since I find that my vote doesn't ever seem to count towards the important issues I care about, even when the candidate I've voted for gets elected, I've channeled my activism into another forum of direct action in the streets, much as I did years ago in the Vietnam War era.

    I know this is somewhat off-topic for this particular blog entry, but you have mentioned that you are going to be speaking about this issue, and I'm just anticipating that post with some of my thoughts as a participant.

    At the Occupy Los Angeles encampment, I spent many hours as a food tent volunteer, and also as a guitarist, jamming with new friends young and old... The Occupy movement is packed with musicians, artists and artisans of many stripes, art being a form of communication after all, and I cannot understand some commentators here who don't understand that as a musician you might have something valuable to say. We all have things to say whatever we do to try and make it in this increasingly difficult world.

    Keep it up Butch, you're doing fine.

    1. Once again, history proves who are fools! Occupy?! Dead and gone in less than a year! Ha!

  6. Let's have another ABB kick ass album.

  7. There's an old saying that most relate to coming from our mothers. You've heard it. "If you can't say anything good about someone, don't say anything."

    This is a pretty good way to live your life. Each time you get angry and blow up, you're taking away a little bit from your own health. Let those who say bad things about others live with their bad Karma.

  8. Well met, Butch.

    Your feelings and your opinions are yours: and they are valid, as are you.

    Your apology shows that you are human and caring. That's awesome.

    Rock on.

  9. Butchie. Lynyrd Skynyrd are dead. The only one left is Gary Rossington.Ed King is living comfortably off of "Sweet Home Alabama". Who cares what he says?
    I saw Ronnie and the boys at The Academy of Music in NYC 1974. They raised hell and kicked major ass. We loved it. Ronnie said "Remember hoe Duane and Bery used to do it in NY? Well we're gonna do it just like Duane and Berry did".
    The crowd was ready to burn the Academy down!! Blasphemy!!! They rocked the joint and we watched them take turns on a bottle of jack behing the amps like it was mothers milk!I miss those characters!
    Tell Gregg to rest up and get healthy.
    Merry Christmas Butchie, family and you fans too!

  10. I wish the "Occupy" folks would have occupied soup kitchens, homeless shelters, places of worship struggling intercity schools and places where they really could have made a difference. Instead they just look like a bunch who want to take for themselves from those that have more than enough. That's every bit as greedy as those they protest.

    I guess Townsend was right: Meet the New Boss, Same as the Old Boss....

  11. Dear Anonymous,

    Did you spend any time at an Occupy Encampment? Did you participate in any General Assemblies Did you, as I did, volunteer at a food tent at an Occupy Camp? I can tell you, we fed all comers at the Occupy Los Angeles camp, including the homeless. We fed everyone, as best we could, given that we were limited by both city health dept. oversight, to the point we couldn't even make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on site, to the limitations of the donations themselves. I won't say that we didn't mirror the troubles society exhibits, collectively we are society, but your post doesn't do more than wish somebody else would work harder. What is your responsibility here?

    We also had the teachers union come down here in Los Angeles and there was an Occupy the School's administration building action In NYC there was an Occupy an education policy meeting at my old High School, Newtown H.S. Queens, N.Y.(where BTW we had a petition in 1971-2 trying to get the ABB to come play at our ball field.) As well as an effort to Occupy Trinity Church's Duarte property.

    What is your motive and your responsibility for making the movement what you wish it to be?

  12. Funny thing about those who are the occupy movement... do any of you remember the liberals who gave trophies to every kid at school- and even the losers? Those who made up the pot smoking criminals and rapists of the occupy movement were more than likely many of those loser children who got trophies for being a loser and now that they are losers in life they still want the trophy without having to work for it or earn it. Liberalism is a mental disease and this country is hopelessly infected with it largely because liberals took over the public schools and turned our children into idiot puppets who have no clue, but they want their trophy!

  13. Dear Mr. Schwartz,

    I want a better world. Anyone can hold up a sign. I do work very hard for what I have. To have members of society do little more than protest and feed each other isn't what I am looking for. I am not sure I understand your question about my responsibility in this regard. I don't live near any of these movements so I can't see first hand what is or isn't working. I am not even sure I live in a state that has had any real occupy movements. There have been some sporadic and very light afternoon gatherings here and there I understand.

    Relying on the media to see what the occupy movement is about (and I don't rely on just one source) isn't perhaps my best choice but it is currently my only choice. I have to work about 60 hours a week due to the responsibilities I do have, first and foremost to my wife and children. I am saying that these people could work within the framework of existing organizations that provide help to the needy. They appear to have a luxury I do not have: free time. They could make a difference. At this point I am not seeing that, albeit from afar. I don't have the option of taking time off to travel to one of these things.

    This country is in need of change but not the kind we are getting and not the kind that can be done by people who may be doing little more than camping out in parks and such.

    There is a school district in our state, in our largest city, that has a 40% graduation rate. The city is pondering bankruptcy. That city needs a lot more than the finger pointing we see today. There is no leadership on the local or state level that seems to be able to get anything done. Many want to cling to the status quo. The status quo is what got them where they are. In the meantime the federal bureaucracy is threatening to cut more funding to the city and the schools - this isn't a political party decision but a federal bureaucratic one.

    One thing I do feel good about is that a while back I wrote to a newspaper columnist in our once-great city about her constant complaining and finger pointing. She never seemed to offer any solutions, just blame. I told her she had a unique opportunity to affect change and that so did her newspaper. We had a series of constructive email exchanges. I don't take credit for this, but she has become quite an advocate for advancing activism with action. She is now leading groups that are actually working to make a difference. The finger pointing has stopped and has been replaced by meaningful work.

    As a nation we have too many special interests (on both sides of the political isle) czars, politicians, bureaucrats, regulations, unions, management, you name it. What we don't have enough of is leadership.

  14. Dear Anonymous,

    Do you have a name? A city which you might care to identify? Or shall you just be Anonymous, from Anytown, USA?

    Of course, one of the things that Occupy stands for is decent jobs, where the necessities of life (and a little left over to go out and see some good live music once in a while - something I haven't been able to afford in ages) can be afforded without spending 60 hrs a week at labor. And having that 60 hrs a week, you are one of the lucky ones, many, myself included have lost jobs, and I've been a sheet-metal worker (union for 15 years,) filmworker (graduated AFI in Cinamatography,) and legal proofreader. At Occupy, I've met folks from all walks of life, many College educated with student debts and not so many prospects of careers. It is easy to say, go find a job, when you've got one. Not so easy being young, or older these days looking for employmnent.

    Prior to the Occupy Movement, austerity was the only conversation being heard. The movement has at least begun to open the conversation up, and cause people to think, why is ok to bail out the banks, and leave a significant portion of our population facing homelessness, lack of healthcare, and food insecurity.

    Another thing the Occupy Movement highlights is the lack of representation being given by the political class to the everyday American as compared to the donor class. And I see you've included unions in your listing of special interests. While I do not support all union leadership, and often find them more in bed with management then actually fighting for the rank and file, to pretend that the unions have anything comparable to the financial warchests of Wall St. and the Banksters is laughable.

    To close for now, the folks you say are just camping out in parks have done more to open up the dialogue in this country than anything I've seen since the end of the Vietnam War, and it is long past due. I'm proud to be a part.

    Thanks, as always, to Mr. Butch Trucks for providing this space. I look forward to your input.

  15. You would think I might have caught the Cinematography typo before I hit publish...

  16. * BT, you remain incapable of ever being boring in any way.

    * Glad to hear you've got a Yorkie. They're temperamental little bastards, but great personalities.

    * I have a lot of respect for Lynyrd Skynyrd, but they're far too different to ever even compare to the ABB. They built a sound around one aspect of the ABB- basically "Midnight Rider"- and did great with it. Can't imagine them wanting to take a run at Coltrane's "My Favorite Things" or the textures of "Liz Reed" or "Whipping Post" or even the straight country stuff (nor did they need to). They did what they did and were great at it, hats off to 'em, and they had some great musicians in that band. The Allmans were game-changers, the best group of pure players ever assembled,and artists to the core of what the word means.

  17. Admittedly, Anonymous, the school system seems to have failed in your case.

    I haven't been able to get a clear line on what the end game is for the Occupy movement. Now that I understand that it's trophies for losing little league teams, I have to say I'm against that. Pizza, o.k., maybe, but no damned trophies.

    Thanks for clearing that one up, Anonymous.

  18. I like Lynyrd Skynyrd but always thought of them as a poor-man's ABB. In any case, King's comments seem to based on severe negative personal feelings for Tom Dowd because he is the only one with that opinion and the remarks are so over-the-top.

  19. It seems to me the our problems stem from the politicians high jacking the rolling log process and Americans losing site of the value of it. In today's day and age the meaning now is known as a trade off of votes by politicians, where as the original meaning was (back in the frontier/colonial days) was when new settlers arrived the community all came together and would clear some land and build a cabin or shelter for the newcomers,and take care of them and like wise the new comers did the same for those that came after them. It was a matter of survival. I guess the term now-a-days would be something like paying it forward (great flick by the way, I'm such a whoose,I always get teary eyed when I watch that dam movie...LOL)
    But our modern world has become so dam complicated and full of greed and corruption that I think the average person is lost when it comes to being able to create change. I have mixed feelings about the Occupy movement, I'm not really sure what to say about it.

  20. Dear Mr. Schwartz,

    I am not quite ready to publicly reveal myself. I just arrived at this site two or three days ago for the first time. I am trying to get the lay of the land. I have seen some interesting and well less than well written/interesting posts. If this turns out to be yet another site where personal derision is the norm I'll move on.

    I will give you a few particulars. The city I wrote about is Detroit. I don't live there but I spent a far amount of time in that area in my youth owing to relatives then living there (all have since passed or moved on). I currently live about 3 hours away from Detroit - and no I am not happy with the Lions, nor do I condone their penalty-prone ways or Suh in particular but I digress.

    You are right, I am extremely fortunate. But I do not consider myself lucky. I have worked for what I have and have been able to hold onto what I have - for now. I prefer to think of myself as blessed.

    I have to put in a 60 hour week as I work in - ready for in - management! Would you believe I care about the people who work for me? They are, in some cases, friends. Some will never chose to be friends with management. Their choice, not mine. We laugh, cry, work, grow, recede and grow again, together. Sometimes my people hate me. Sometimes they love me. My goal is to bring them all kicking and screaming to success. For you see, the more they succeed the more we all succeed. I am well aware there are managers who take the opposite approach.

    I am, mostly conservative (gasp!). But I tend to look at things not from the perspective of left vs. right or right vs. left but right vs. wrong. I think the banks should have been allowed to fail and should not have received bailouts. I don't agree that you can't attract top management without paying stupidly high salaries and bonuses (you would be stunned to learn what I actually make - it isn't all that much!). I support the continuation of unemployment insurance for the long-term unemployed. I don't support illegal aliens per say but I think the companies hiring them should be punished right out of business as I think it's little more than modern day slavery. Right now there isn't a single candidate for president in 2012 that impresses me. I think Obama is the worst president in my lifetime since Carter. But I don't rank Bush (one or II) a whole lot higher. I wonder where today's Washington's, Lincoln's, Roosevelt's, Truman's, Kennedy's and Reagan's are. I don't fault specifically unions or management but both equally. I don't drink anyone's Kool-Aid. There are pluses and minuses on both sides.

    I am just shy of 50 and I am tired. I worry about my parents and my children.

    And please note that I said the folks that "seem" to be just camping out in regards to the Occupy movement. I am sure some are well meaning and want better things for the country and the world just I as I do. Some are just along for the ride.

    I genuinely appreciate the discourse. I am finding it rarer and rarer to find those interested in talking, from either side. It's easy to point fingers. Thanks for shaking hands!

  21. Dear Anonymous,

    When I first posted on the subject of the Occupy movement, I did so anticipating a blog entry by Mr. Trucks. It was not my intention to hijack his blog-space, nor was meant to be anymore than my personal views of the Occupy movement as a participant. The movement is far larger than I, it is very diverse, and I am not claiming to be its spokesperson.

    But, one of the things that Butch has posted is the need for civil dialogue, rather than mindless shouting past one another, and if we can be an example of that I am more than willing to continue.

    So this then, is a more personal post of mine, not so much about Occupy Wall Street per se (or L.A. in my case) as it is about my own feelings and why I was drawn to the Occupy Movement. I hope you appreciate the difference.

    First of all, I don't think that this country, or any country for that matter, but the US is the most glaring account, can simulataniously be a National Security State and a Democracy. To date the current terrorism crisis to 9/11/01 is irresponsible, as it completely disregards the funding, training and support given to radical Islamists by both the Carter and Reagan Administrations in the proxy wars waged against the Soviet Union. Of course, we can look back even farther, to the US overthrow of Mossedegh in Iran in 1953, the almost innumerable coups and attempted coups in Africa and South America. President Truman, who signed the National Security Act in 1947, wrote in the Washington Post on 12/22/63 the following:

    "For some time I have been disturbed by the way CIA has been diverted from its original assignment. It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of the Government. This has led to trouble and may have compounded our difficulties in several explosive areas."

    "I never had any thought that when I set up the CIA that it would be injected into peacetime cloak and dagger operations. Some of the complications and embarrassment I think we have experienced are in part attributable to the fact that this quiet intelligence arm of the President has been so removed from its intended role that it is being interpreted as a symbol of sinister and mysterious foreign intrigue—and a subject for cold war enemy propaganda."

    (The full Op-Ed Limit CIA Role To Intelligence By Harry S Truman is availible here:'s%20CIA%20article.html )

    It is too bad we didn't pay heed as a nation to Truman's words, written then just a month after JFK's assasination.

    So now, a full decade past the 9/11/01 affair, we find ourselves ever more enmeshed in the National Security State apparatus, and the value of citizen participation in our political discourse is reaching never before seen levels of discount. And those protesting in dissent find themselves facing militarized police forces trained in S.W.A.T. techniques and armaments. This includes tear gas cannisters aimed at the heads of some demonstrators as in the case of Scot Olsen, an Iraq War vet and member of Occupy Oakland. And almost all of the Occupy Movement has been non-violent in the utmost, even in the face of police provocation and agents provocateurs in their midst.

    I am starting to feel that I'm getting long-winded here, but I guess that can't be helped, nothing that fits on a bumper-sticker offers any reasonable analysis of where we are, and without looking back to how we came to be here we cannot ever reason a way out.


  22. (cont.)

    Since you pointed to Obama as the worst president since Carter, let me point out that had we paid attention to Carter with regard to our energy situation, things might have been very different in very meaningful ways. Reagan, of course, did everything he could to ensure that the countries' reliance on foreign energy sources continued, to our extreme detriment.

    To address the Obama Administration, without looking at the W. Bush Administration seems laughable. I can and do heap scorn on Obama, but mostly in context to his mandate for change away from W., and instead his continuation and in some cases, escalation of W.'s disasterous policies. So, I'm no Obama fan, but the lack of prosecution for wars on false pretenses and torture, his crackdown on whistleblowers, his economic team of Banksters, etc., etc. is just more of the same as far as I can see.

    One more thing... As to George Washington, he'd just be refered to as a "terrorist" in today's terminology.

    Yours in dialogue,
    Robert Schwartz

  23. You people... as much as I love you all...(or your gifts and talents at least) and am enjoying the conversation... you are all insane!!! To each are given different gifts....I hope you enjoy...and Marry Christmas To All...
    Rock On...

  24. almost forgot... the link...

  25. Ya Know what I mean...peace!!!...

  26. Liberalism is a mental disease... America is terminally ill with it. Now go give those ghetto kids, er I mean gangsta's their trophy now.

    Minds like a robot. Entitlement-ality.

    Ever since liberals took over public schools they stopped teaching the three r's and now indoctrinate children with poison.

    America's children can not spell, can not add and subtract, can tell you who a founding father is, but they sure feel great about it- and they want their trophy too!

    Liberals should be cleansed from the planet. Then it would be a better world.

  27. May the Baby Jesus open your mind
    and shut your mouth.

  28. Butch,

    You really need to do away with anonymous posting.

  29. oh, and...
    Got my tix for Wanee and want to put in a request for Gambler's Roll. I haven't heard it live yet.

    Merry Christmas, Brothers and Sisters.

  30. Screw Jesus freaks. All invented hogwash. Liberals destroy every country they terminally infect. With liberals it is always they have a better way but it all ends the same- cesspool crap. Liberals always want change, only their change is slow death by hatefilled strangulation. Liberal cesspools of hate is how their idea of utopia always end. Stop trying to change things stupid liberals. Your way is not always they better way.

  31. Whiskey Mike, saw your request/comment for "Gambler's Roll." I was fortunate to know Tom Dowd, he invited me to hang out in the control room at Criteria Studios E the night they cut, "Gambler's Roll."(they also cut, "Good Clean Fun") The Brothers played it live and wrapped it in two takes, I came back the next night to watch Warren Haynes lay down the guitar solo overdub for it...

    To say it was one of the highlights of my life is an understatement, I'll never forget it...

    Rob CoconutGrove,Florida

  32. Dear Mr. Schwartz,

    Christmas and the holiday season in general have occupied much of my time as of late (pardon the pun). I finally got back to the site tonight. Good post. Wish I had time to say more.

  33. Rob CoconutGrove,

    Amazingly cool. I think GR ranks with the best of ABB tunes. Fun to play on the bass too.

    Thanks for the inside story.

  34. I saw Gamblers roll live it is great. Wish they would put songs like jelly jelly,Firing line,get on with your life back in the setlist.

  35. Fuck these "Occupiers". What a bunch of spoiled, whining, crybaby assholes who ain't worth a popcorn fart in a rainstorm. These are the same kids who have obviously been raised in little leagues where they don't keep score and give an MVP trophy to every fatass bench warmer on the team.

    Guess what folks?? Real life keeps score. Nothing is free and if you want something in this world you go out and fucking work for it.

    On the other hand, I'm not sure which is worse - These dumbass protesters or the hypocritical wealthy, millionaire liberals who stand on the sidelines cheering them on.

    I sure as fuck haven't seen anyone on this site offering to give up his million dollar Palm Beach mansion to the poor, helpless, so-called "99 percenters" in the interest of "fairness".

    What the fuck is this country coming to????

  36. Charlie Horse, if you don't have something constructive to add to the conversation here, please don't post again. I have tried, and for the most part, succeeded in keeping the conversation here civil. Comments like "what a bunch of spoiled, whining, crybaby. assholes who ain't worth a popcorn fart in a rainstorm." Is neither constructive nor civil. It is a "fact" that the top 1% of Americans have, since 1980, seen around a 300% increase in income while the bottom 99% have seen none and most have seen a decrease in their income. Even during the boom times when unemployment was basically nil there were those that did not and will not work. This is human nature. Most of those that make up the millions of unemployed are that way because they cannot find employment no matter how hard they try. They have lost everything and have little hope at the moment. There actually is a group of the very wealthy people, headed by Bill and Melinda Gates, that are donating very large parts of their fortunes to try and help. They are very near to finally wiping out polio. They are pouring millions into revamping our education system. The problem is that most of the 1% are continuing to see there share of the pie get larger and larger while, rather than helping to make things better are simply living very large, while the rest of us see our share continue to shrink. History tells us that this is what happens to all great societies and when it reaches the boiling point then we will either have revolution (France 1789) or tyranny (Rome 1st century AD). I believe that the Occupy Movement is the first stage in one of these directions. It may grow into a full blown revolution or it may be squelched by those in power and any semblance of democracy finally done away with. You might agree or have another opinion. If so feel free to post here. Please stop the mindless ranting.

    1. Occupy became a joke that died with a whimper. Sorry, but it's true, Mr. Trucks.

  37. Butch,

    Bear didn't leave that water gun lying around here somewhere, did he? Charlie might benefit from a little "Instant Karma."

    Seriously, I wish it was that easy. I know of course, it isn't. Still, I thought I'd "Share a Little Joke."


  38. Butch,

    Regarding the income gap, there are multiple reasons that could occur. If John makes $100 a week and Mary makes $200 and they both get a 10% raise, their income gap grew from $100/week to $110/week. Yet they got the same raise.

    Yea, I know this is a simplistic example but I see no one offering a different explanation for why the income gap is expanding. We all just assume that there is an evil elite that is keeping everyone down. That doesn't explain the rise of companies like Facebook and Google.

    The other point I'd like to make is that everyone assumes that income is a zero sum game. If I'm making less it's because your making more and that is not fair. I would argue that there is a small percentage of the population that spends a tremendous amount of their time educating themselves and making sure they can make a contribution to society in return for monetary gain. The rest of the country has decided that they have enough and want to enjoy their lives. After all, modern life has gotten easier for each of us.

    I also have this thought. Say there was a person who decides early in life that they wish to play guitar. They love playing guitar and want to entertain people. They love it so much that they play 8 hours every day to the point where their fingers bled. They even fall asleep with the guitar still strapped around them. Till one day, they got so good at it they could play tunes that made hundreds of millions of people happy. And these tunes got recorded and sold tons of records and the artist got inducted into the rock and roll hall of fame. Is there a limit to how much that person should make?

    Jim G.

  39. Jim G.

    You gave an example that doesn't seem to mirror any reality that I can observe (John and Mary.) Maybe you didn't read Butch's comment just above. Here is another way of putting it:

    "At a time most employees can barely remember their last substantial raise, median CEO pay jumped 27% in 2010 as the executives’ compensation started working its way back to prerecession levels, a USA TODAY analysis of data from GovernanceMetrics International found. Workers in private industry, meanwhile, saw their compensation grow just 2.1% in the 12 months ended December 2010, says the Bureau of Labor Statistics."

    So there is no across the board raise, even in percentage terms as you described. And as a matter of, "We all just assume that there is an evil elite that is keeping everyone down." might I remind you that Alan Greenspan once commented in congressional testimoney that he used "worker instability" as a hedge against inflation, even though "full employment" is just as much a legal mandate of the Fed as is monetary policy. (See Humphrey-Hawkins Full Employment Act.)

    Modern life certainly has not gotten "easier" for me in the last few decades, where once I had a good union job, had income to spend on restaurants, travel and live music, items I haven't enjoyed in ages, and now unemployed and in my mid-fifties, prospects aren't very good.

    To your final point, a couple of comments. First, for every musician that makes the big time, how many fine players end up just getting by, or not even that? How many end up playing not the music that sings in their hearts, but the music that pays the mortgage? And finally, have you read the post where Butch talks about Duane's and Berry's tragic accidents and then says, "It's really weird how we went on anyway and then the worst of all possible things that could happen happened. Success. On a level no one ever dreamed of and we sure were not ready for. Without Duane and Berry and with the world treating us like gods the whole thing just imploded."

    This level of success has taken it's toll on too many musicians, athletes, actors, etc. to name. And while I'm appreciative of all these artists, shouldn't a healthy society also reward our teachers, firefighters, police, sanitation workers et al., with decent compensation?

    Robert Schwartz

  40. Hi Butch, couldn't agree with you more about Palin. Can't even watch that hypocritical, ignorant bitch on tv without retching. However, reason for this comment is I've been trying to get in touch with you. Sent you a message on FB. Pls get back to me if you get a chance. Need to talk (briefly). Thanks! Toni

  41. What I've noticed in these threads are the quotes of Ronnie et al about Duane and Berry. I remember reading how Ronnie, Gary and Allen used to look up to Duane in the early days in Jax. They went in their own direction, as good musicians ought to do, in my opinion.

  42. Benjamin Franklin said "When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic."

  43. hi butch, ive ben askynyrd fan since the mid 70,s and ive also been a fan of the allmans since then too thats when i became of age and i started playing bass guitar at my church of course which i was raised in and thankfull for the parents i have that took me there!! that said, i dont think you owe anyone an apology for syaing what you said about ed king. if he was and he was that stupid to say something about mr dowd then he dose deserve being ranted on for doing just that. however, i do feel ed is probably smarter than that and i personally feel he knows exactly what his actions were at least before he got his heart replaced if he in fact did they say he has so i guess he has . but let us not forget that skynyrd really ended on oct 20th 1977 and the group who went back out was ok at least i did get to see them a couple times when leon was playing and it was worth it to me to see him play. however again, i dont feel like i ever got to see the real skynyrd because the real one had ronnie and ronnie will never be replaced by anyone he was juts as many have said ronnie was skynyrd. ironically both the allmans and skynyrd have had death hit their bands we all know how good the allmans were with duane he really was a guitar god in my opinion one of the very best to ever stretch a string and berry oakley was a very good bass player too. ive said all this to say this nothing last forever in this life and i really believe there is a heavan and hell. for those of us who dont believe in this why take a chance on it all we have to do is believ it thats what the good book says i know im not taking a chance i know my lord and savior is jesus christ howabout you? as for the politics of today i personally am astounded at whats goin on. newt gingrich won south carolina a dominated christan state of conceratives wow howd he pull that off that alone does rock me!! as for the past 12 years in the whitehouse i personally dont agree with alot of how bush ran it. he opened our borders in mexico and i allways will think he did it because in texas they live with mexicans alot. now im not racist but this is the usa! so why did he allow them in here? puzzles me. all im saying is when bush was elected i lost alot along with alot of people of the middle class. it seemed the rich got more tax breaks than ever and are still getting them is this right ? i dont agree with it i thnk they should have to pay like i do equal. i dont envy anyone who makes it big in business but at the same token why cant the tricke down econmics of our adminastration of the concertavives get to me all i masking?

    1. How have the last 7 years of liberal Obama worked out for you, buddy? Sincerely hope you are doing well, but I wonder what you think about Obama's wide-open immigration policies since you thought Bush was bad in 2012? Everything is worse in 2016 than it was before 2008. I'll be very surprised if you disagree with me.

  44. All I know is funding liberals in public education has been the worst thing for America. It has gone downhill so rapidly since the 1960's it is not even funny. Today conservatives will not fund commie liberals in public schools. Get the liberals out of public schools and install ultra conservatives and then we will have something to support, but as long as we have non-educators who prefer to indoctrinate while dumbing down the children they do not deserve one penny. Not one penny. Too bad we can't just run them out by force if necessary and it may be coming to that. Until then the time has come to defund liberals and put our money into conservative alternative education we demand.

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  46. Butch, thank you for defending Tom Dowd's legacy! My song Chris, who is 15, will be playing drums with you on 3/8/15. Among other songs, he will be performing Layla and Bell Bottom Blues by your side. I have taught Chris all about Tom and he was shown Tom Dowd and the Language of Music at a very young age. It is an honor that he will be carrying on the vibe of Tom and his sound with such a master as you! Looking forward and thanking for continuing to share your work with our future generations.

  47. Why is Sarah Palin such a threat to the left?

    Hillary Clinton should use a mask and gun, but you don't have a problem with her.

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