Music is my only solace

Music is my only friend.

I have been trying for MONTHS to write about Gregg Allman’s death.  Life got busy.  Life events are happening.  Yet, I would sit down every week and try to write about how much Gregg meant to me.  It always seemed the right words weren’t coming.

When Gregg died, I was broken hearted, but yet, I knew it was coming. I think most fans knew that the end was coming.  Early in May reports had gone out that he was dead.  But there he was tweeting he was alive and in Georgia, where he belonged.  We didn’t know 3 weeks later, the reports would be real.  But again, Gregg had been ill and battling liver problems for a long, long time.


Gregg knew his time was coming. 

Have you heard the single “The Road is my only true friend”. When you heard it, I bet you broke into tears and nearly crashed your car into a jersey barrier.  No?  That was just me? Oh well.  When I heard that song when I first heard it WRECKED ME (and nearly my car).  It was Gregg’s goodbye to all of us.

Then Chester Benington died. 

While Chester’s death didn’t affect me personally, I know quite a few people who were devastated by his death.  I was sad.  Sad for his fans. Sad for his wife.  Most of all sad for the six kids he left behind with questions.


Then this week.  THIS. DAMN. WEEK. 

I woke up Monday morning to the news of yet another mass shooting. This time it was Vegas at a Jason Aldean show.  Gun control opinions aside (we all have them), all these folks wanted to do was go to a festival and have a good time.  That’s all any of us want to do. The world is bat shit crazy and for me and many like me, live shows are a place to go and be with people who are of the same mind.  It’s horrifying that a place I consider my solace is being torn up by a fucking wing nut with a gun.  Why?  Well, we probably won’t ever know and that pisses me off.  59 people getting ready to hear their boy Jason Aldean were gone in an instant because of a whacked out asshole.  It sucks.

I was already sad for this country and music fans as I went about my day.  Then, just as I was pulling into the parking lot to watch my teenage nephew play some football (yes, on a Monday, here in the Northeast there were religious holidays the schools had to observe), my text message notification goes off.  It’s my uncle.


Tom Petty was reported dead.

I sat there for a moment staring at the phone.  I read the message three times before checking Google.  All had one thing in common, he was reported of having no brain activity and I was sad.  Tom Petty.  A musician that since I was 11 years old when I first saw the video for “You got Lucky” was gone.

My son commented how “Lucky can’t die!” because we both loved the animated TV show “King of the Hill”.  Tom’s performance as Lucky was always my favorite part.  I finally left the car and watching my nephew play, all the time thinking what an incredibly shitty day it was.


Tom was everywhere. 

His music helped us all.  Who will EVER not associate “American Girl” with Silence of the Lambs?  Okay, maybe that’s just me and my twisted family, but we love that song and we love that movie.  My friend’s cover band plays American girl all the time for me and my best friend.  I hope they will do that again when we go to see them play next week.


Maybe a regret or two.

My one regret in regards to Tom was that I didn’t go to any of his shows this last tour.  I find I’m not the only one who felt “Oh, I’ll go next time he comes around” was a phrase I read a lot on Facebook from my friends.  I wanted to go to the first show in OKC, but it didn’t’ work out with my friends that live out there.  When he was coming to NY, he was going to Brooklyn and it’s a big pain to get to the venue and I really didn’t have the money for the show after dropping a lot of money on Rocklahoma.  I had also already been to a few other big ticket shows and really didn’t have the extra cash.


So, I opted not to go.

I’m kicking my own ass now.  If I learn one thing from Tom’s unexpected death, you want to see someone, no matter who it is, go see them.  Get yourself there.  I’m following that motto by trying to hit as many shows as I can starting in November.


Don’t let the fear that something bad may happen at a show prevent you from going to a concert.  The people who perform and host these events do what they can to keep us safe, even if we don’t agree with the rules.  Trust me, I had some issues at Rocklahoma and now I’m realizing that they were just doing what they could to keep everyone safe.  If you are able to spend money on a big ticket, spend it.  Go to the show!  Don’t be like me and countless others thinking “oh, the next time they come around” because there might not be a next time.

More importantly, get out there, no matter how tiny your scene is and see local bands.  You never know who will become a star, but you’ll know that you’ve had some great times with hardworking musicians on the tiny stage.  Get out there and go do it.  Music is the one constant friend we all have and can share.  Get out there and show your favorite musicians some love.


This will always be my favorite “look” for Tom Petty.  I love the song “Don’t Come Around Here No More” and the video with the Alice in Wonderland theme made it even cooler.

Rest in peace, Sir.  You’ll live on in our hearts an the music you so lovingly created.

16 Oct 1970, Muscle Shoals, Alabama, USA — The Allman Brothers l-r: Gregg Allman (background); Duane Allman (foreground) — Image by © Michael Ochs Archives/Corbis

All I thought about when I heard about Gregg’s death was “Well at least he and Duane are reunited.”  These two guys changed music and we were all so lucky to have them for the time we did.


Otherwise known as “The Days Between”.  At least that’s what me and my friends call these days between Jerry’s birthday and the day of his death.  Today is Jerry Garcia’s birthday.   He would’ve been 75 today.  I like to think that if he was still alive he’d be out there touring.  Just like his former bandmates do now.

Being a Deadhead changed my life.  I met a fantastic group of people I call “family”.  We all stick by each other, at least the core group does.  We’ve all had struggles but we “Jerry on” as my friend Jay would say.

This week is always a mixed emotional week for me.  My day job requires my attention more than usual this month.  I have birthdays for two people who mean a lot to me to celebrate.  Sadly, my BFF’s birthday is the same day Jerry died.  I still remember her walking in and saying “It’s not my fault!” that fateful day.

While I listen to all sorts of music, and it’s quite a mixed bag.  Jerry and the Dead still hold most of my heart.  When I’m sad or anxious, I can put on a tune and relax.  When I miss my friends, besides calling/writing them, I can play a song and be reminded of them and their love.

Jerry gave us all a gift and those of us who followed him knew it.  We were lucky to have had him in our lives for 53 years, many of those he toured constantly and brought joy to thousands.

Jerry on, my friends!





May you get to eat what you want.  Drink what you want.  Hang out with those you want. 

Be safe.  Have Fun!


We’re off to Rocklahoma 2017!  It’s the first time we’re hitting this festival.  Excited and nervous all at once.
Following my own advice, and anyone that reads this post, where ever you may be this upcoming Holiday Weekend, be smart.  Be safe.  If you see something out of place, for fuck sake, tell someone.  It’s a lesson to be learned what happened in Manchester in the last 24 hours.


RIP Chris Cornell 1964 – 2017

I was supposed to see Chris with Soundgarden next week at Rocklahoma.  I never was able to see him live.  Now I never will.

I don’t have much to say about his death.  I’m sad.  I’m sad for us fans, who fell in love with his voice.  I’m sad for his band mates.  For his friends, both famous and not famous.  I am especially sad for his wife, his children and all those that loved him.

Chris had demons.  We all have demons.  He fought them every day.  I know that struggle.  I wish someone got to him.  His wife tried.  I feel for her so much right now. She knew he was in distress but it was too late.

RIP you beautiful man, with the amazing voice.  You will live on in our hearts and in your music.


**If you or someone you know needs a lifeline, call The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

You can always reach me as well, if I know you or not, I’m not here to judge, but if you’re in a dark place, and need a stranger or a shoulder, I will not let you fall.  Email me at or on Twitter Tina Speechley@Inkd_Scrivener**



It’s summer.  Okay, it’s almost summer.  If it’s after May 1st, I consider it summer.  I’m not going to talk about what a sound tech should have on hand or how to handle outdoor gigs.  This post on ProSound Web covers what sound engineers should be ready for during outdoor shows.  In this post, I’ll give you some tips for going to a festival or local outdoor show as a fan.

This summer there are plenty of festivals and outdoor concerts to choose from.  Bonnaroo (June), Rock on the Range (May 19-21) and Rocklahoma (May 26-28).  I’m going to Rocklahoma this year.  It’s the first time I’m headed there and I’m pretty excited.

Of course, you don’t just have to hit a festival to enjoy great music. There are plenty of places that do outdoor shows when the weather is nice. I live in NYC metro area and I have my choice of attending Jones Beach, PNC Bank Arts Center or Bethel Woods.  Not to mention MetLife Stadium or Citifield.

I just recently kicked off my summer concert going this past Sunday, which also happened to be Mother’s Day.  I went to Metallica with a large group of friends and family.  Folks, if you have the chance to catch Metallica on their tour the next few weeks, I strongly recommend you do it.  They were phenomenal.  If you’re an old school (or even a newbie) Metallica fan, you won’t regret it.

What can you do, as a fan, heading out to any number of outdoor shows this summer?  As someone who has gone to quite a few outdoor concerts, I have some helpful advice to share.

Go Local

If you’re planning to go to one of your local outdoor venues, my advice is to have a plan in place before the show.  Questions such as:  Who will be the driver?  Do you have a backup plan for getting to or home from the show?  Who’s getting the tickets?  Are you buying tickets together or individually (if you want to sit together, buy as a group)?  Most importantly, what are you bringing for the tailgate party? Tailgating is a fun way to start your concert experience.  Like the Boy Scouts, being prepared is a great idea.  Prepping a little beforehand can mean less stress later.

Traveling To a Show

If you’re traveling to a show in another state, like I am, preparation is key.  Like a local show, decide how you’re getting to the event.  Flying or driving?  Where are you going to stay?  These are the two most important questions to have answered before purchasing your ticket for the festival.

I’ve listed below some other tips for festival travelers that can save you the frustration of being unprepared.

  • Deciding on how to get there. If you fly, purchase your tickets about 6-8 weeks before your travel.  I learned a tip from a Pinterest post, that booking on a Tuesday at around 2 p.m. you can find a good deal on airfare.  If you’re driving, decide if you’re taking your own vehicle or renting.  If you’re going with a bunch of people, split the cost of the rental.  If you’re driving a personal vehicle, I suggest doing any routine maintenance on your car before your trip.  At the very least, check the oil and tire pressure.  In addition, an emergency kit in the car is good to have.  Not just first aid, but having flares, spare tire, oil, and anti-freeze on hand can save you if you have the misfortune of breaking down on the road.
  • Accommodations. When I was younger, I would travel with a large group of friends to Grateful Dead shows.  Mostly on the east coast.  In summer, we’d camp out.  Camping, if done right, is more cost-effective than a hotel room.  Plus, camping can be a lot of fun.  However, now that I’m closer to 50, camping, unless it’s in an RV, is not my idea of fun.  I’ll take a hotel.  If you and your group are choosing a hotel to stay at, I suggest booking as soon as you know you’re heading to a show.  Big festivals, like Rocklahoma and Bonnaroo, start selling out rooms as the date for the concert gets closer.  Sometimes the promoters work with local hotels and you may be able to score a deal on the room price.
  • Day of show. Most places allow you to bring a tote bag or backpack.  However, if possible, check the rules the venue has about how large a bag you can bring.  I use a small size backpack because most venues these days do not allow duffel bags or large backpacks.  Here’s a list I have in my bag.
    • Water. Stay hydrated!  I can’t stress this enough.  Have water with you.  If the venue allows, have a bottle you can keep refilling.  Some venues frown upon bringing outside beverages, so you may get stuck with buying from one of the vendors.  In that case, buy a bottle of water and refill it at a water fountain.  Drinking booze at a show can be fun, but it won’t keep you from passing out from dehydration.  For every two alcoholic drinks, drink a bottle of water.  Not only will you keep from dehydrating, but you can stave off that hangover as well.
    • Snacks. I’m not saying pack a lunch unless you can.  Chips, granola bars, nuts, cookies, fruit, etc., are portable and easy to keep in your bag.  My go to snacks are usually granola bars, cookies or a snack pack of mixed nuts.   Bring something that doesn’t need to be kept cold but will give you some nutritional value.  We all know how expensive it can be to get food at a venue.  Having some snacks on hand may help keep hunger at bay.  That way you can eat when you leave the venue. Traveling is fun and getting to sample the local cuisine can be part of that experience.
    • Sunscreen. I know, I sound like a buzzkill, or worse, your Mom, but you’ll thank me for this tip.  Take it from the idiot girl who once fell asleep in the parking lot at a Grateful Dead show and ended up with a 2nd-degree sunburn that day.  SPF 50 that blocks all the bad rays from the sun works.  I know you want to sport a tan, but your skin will thank you for protecting it as you get older.  Get a small bottle and throw it in your bag so you can re-apply at the show.  Also, wearing a hat and sunglasses help protect you from the sun’s strong rays.
    • Miscellaneous stuff. I usually keep the essentials listed above along with an extra shirt and a tiny first aid kit. If you have medical issues, bring your meds. Having an extra shirt is good for when the sun goes down and the temp drops a bit.  Or if you just want to change your shirt because you’re sweltering in the heat.
  • Be smart. Be safe. No matter what, indoor or outdoor concert, be smart.  Go with at least one other person.  Know your surroundings.  Tell your friends where you’re going.  If you need to run to the bathroom? Go with your buddy.  As much as there are regular folks out there wanting to just have fun, there are also scary folks out there looking to ruin someone’s good time.  Be smart about who you talk to and trust.  I’m not going to argue about whether or not drugs are bad or good.  I will say this if you choose to smoke weed or take other drugs, KNOW where you got it from.  I know, sounds weird to trust a person giving you drugs, but hey, if you’re going to get high, don’t take a pill or smoke a joint if you don’t know what it is or in it.  That’s not smart at all. Know your limits when you’re drinking.  Just because you’re having a weekend away from responsibilities, doesn’t mean you need to get stupid drunk at a show.  Concert tickets are very expensive these days.  Don’t waste all that hard earned money by getting too drunk to remember the show or worse, wind up in the ER for alcohol poisoning.  Have a few drinks.  Chill out, sit back and enjoy the music.  On the flip side, just because you’re not the one imbibing, don’t bring everyone down by pouting.  If you all want to have a good time, consider getting a party bus or limo so someone else is driving.
  • Be respectful. Clean up after yourselves people!  I can’t stress this enough.  You have garbage, find a trash can.  Yes, there are people employed to clean up, but seriously, your Mamma didn’t raise a pig.  And if she did, well, pick up after yourself anyway!  Be respectful to the people working the venue.  Yeah, you may be there to blow off steam, but they’re getting paid minimum wage to clean up after your ass, don’t be a jerk.  If there’s a problem with your tickets, yelling at the gate agent is not going to get the problem solved. Crying might, but yelling will definitely get you nowhere.  Well, if you yell loud enough and act like an ass, it’ll get you to jail, and you’ll miss the show.  Smoking is another touchy subject at concerts.  Smoking weed, cigarettes, and I noticed now even vaping is frowned upon in most places, even when you’re outside. If you get asked by one of the venue security guards to put it out, don’t be a jerk to him.  He’s just doing his job.  One last thing leave the weapons in the car.  Seriously, do you really need your pocket knife inside the venue?  You don’t need your gun in the venue either.  Be safe and keep it locked in the car.

Nothing Better Than a Live Show

Going to a show, inside or outside, can be one of the best experiences of your life.  If you’re like me and have been to multiple shows over the years, you know those moments. When the music is just right. The band is on their game.  The weather is fine and you are with your friends grooving to the music.  It’s just one big magical moment that you can hold onto for days.  I’m writing this two days after seeing Metallica and I am still feeling the love.  Truly, there is nothing like a live music show. Whether it’s the Allman Brothers at Jones Beach, Dead and Company at Citifield or The Zac Brown Band at Bethel Woods, there’s nothing more fun than seeing your favorite band live.  Do yourself this summer, get a bunch of your friends together and hit a live show.

Welcome to The Ink’d Scrivener

Hey now.  Thanks for stopping by to my small corner of the freelance writing world.

As you can see, this site is still being built, however, that does NOT mean I’m not available to help you with your blog posts, white pages, or custom content you need to promote your tech business.

If you are a sound production professional looking for help to keep your customers and potential customers up to date on your services, I’m the one to help.  If you’re a tech professional looking for a great writer to write blog posts or create white pages for your new product, I’m your writer.

Please go to my LinkedIn page for more information about my current writing and what I’ve done in the past.  Not only do I work sound gigs, but I’ve worked with engineers for over 20 years.  I get you.  I understand that you like to tinker, create new stuff and don’t necessarily like to write.  Lucky for you I love to write and I can help you.

Sound good so far? Let’s talk about how I can help you out.

Email me at