Fred For Your Head

Fredly's Blog

Fred For Your Head,, Fred Reiss.


17--the best wiseass to take on Cancer


Today I start the day with a different strategy: me secret weapon. I need one of my major weapons against cancer and chemo’s light show…

I had to walk out to the mound, take the ball away from Fred-Today signal to the bench, and bring out Fred-17

Yes the 17-year old, who has embarrassed me with his Salinger-like moments of restrained and self-devouring adolescence, and lead me to funny and Thoreau-Kerouac-like quests in front of the backdrop of looking at everything is life as a straight man who needed to be tweaked.

I'm going through all the material I've been working on for the last three years to tighten my cancer presentation special shows, and a stand-up act. And I needed soundtrack. I decided to play all the albums--yes albums--that I listened to when I was the most unruly and arrogant wiseass and compulsively funny without a compass or a sense of other people's sensitivity borders and believed every woman held a key to salvation in a summer's day: 17-year-old Fredly fire (I’ve omitted Carol King—that was a album to talk to girls about, and Black Sabbath and King Crimson—too dark for light, and Dylan—too angry to think right) So, in goes the following music I uncritically dropped all my filters and let the music pass through me without any wind resistance that made me fly like I was walking on the earth but in between landing or taking off, depending on what I saw and felt.

And 17 shares a common trait with chemo and cancer, it can be toxic, self-destructive, and a sponge. But its that raw nectar you have to find and protect and remove the seeds and twigs and funny without a sense of humor about yourself, seeing what separates you from others without confrontations with others, but merely expressing yourself and marinating deeply into it, a type of sunscreen from cynicism *which can only sharpen a knife to stab and not do reconstructive surgery—you deconstruct which builds nothing. You have to turn that spirit on yourself, produce and proof, don’t rant and make excuses.

So I try to equal chemo-cancer marinating with the backbeat of music that made 17-year old into a Fred ready to be himself at any cost, and when you get a taste of that, not paycheck, wine, or drug can equal it—unless you’ve just got paid for being you, and are drinking wine, and then maybe a little place where noses go =bump in the night, HA,… .

SO Exile on Main Street, Who’s Next and Live Aat Leeds and Tommy,, Led Zep one, two, and three, Wheels of Fire and Disraeli Gears, John Barleycorn, Tea For The Tillerman and Teaser and The Fire Cat, Cosmos Factory, Cheapo Thrills and Pearl, All Things Must Pass, McCartney and Ram, Lennon’s first solo, Santana and Abraxsis (Everything sounded the same after that, but a big nod later in life to Greg Rollie’s music), Woodstock, Paul Simon, Aqualung and Benefit, Band of Gypsies and Axis Bold as Love, Jefferson Airplane, CSYN and Déjà vu, Chicago, Chicago and Transit Authority, Sly and the Family Stone, Mountain, James Gang, American Beauty and Workingman’s Dead and wake of ther Flood, Tumbleweed Connection and Madman Across The Water, Moody Blues, Steppenwolf’s Monster and others, and still adding as I remember.

Sometimes in life you have to fill yourself up with enough me be able to give to others—and yourself, but then the two meet, whether it’s your soul connecting to an audience, or doing as good deed that you can’t profit from or do, who cares? Why can’t nice lead to better, of bad leads to worse.

So today the roulette ball lands on 17!

Fred Reiss