Skip to Content Skip to Navigation



A huge wave took out a Lake Michigan lighthouse in Wisconsin.

*note: I realize more and more that I have to check my own spelling before I sign off. I don't want to be like the guy who, after telling friends that because he had lost so much sleep he was walking around in a fog. "I'm in a fog," he told friends. However, one text message he sent out read, "I'm in a frog."


Carol Jane Smith (Balulis), beloved wife of drummer boy Steve Smith passed away very unexpectedly on Wednesday, January 2, 2019 in Winston Salem, NC. She is survived by her husband Steven Smith; her daughter, Jaime Smith and grandchildren, JahMan, IMara and Zarah; her son, Eric Smith; her sisters, Nora Dauser and Cynthia Thompson; many nieces, nephews and friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, John and Mary Balulis, her brother John Balulis and her sister, Juliann Austhof. Carol was a loving and dedicated wife, mother, grandmother sister and a friend to all who knew her. The news of Carol’s passing was a shock to me and was certainly more of a shock to Steve. All prayers for Steve and family are greatly appreciated.


I heard it on YouTube: The Danish National Symphony Orchestra doing the Good, the Bad and the Ugly- live! Complete with whistle and spaghetti Western electric Guitar! First class!


In 1903, Horatio Nelson Jackson, a doctor and a preacher's son, chose to be the man to take the first cross country automobile road trip (from San Francisco to New York City). He bought a cherry red Winton 1903 Touring Car. It had a 2 cylinder 20 horsepower engine, chain drive and was capable of reaching speeds up to 30 mph. His car had no top and no windshield.

"Absolute control of the car is assured by the Winton method of motor government which is simplicity itself."
-Winton Advertising Poster

2 other cars, a Packard and an Oldsmobile, got into the action, making the first cross country trip an auto race!

One short newspaper headline read: A Real Live Automobile was in Lakeview Nearly a Whole Day on Way from San Francisco to New York City

DAD'S RECORDS - December 31, 2018

Here's a list of record albums my dad had:
1.) Hank Williams- Moanin' the Blues
2.) Hank Williams- Rambling Man (actually, he had quite a few Hank Williams LP 33 1/3 RPM Hank Williams record albums in the MGM label.
3.) Jimmie Driftwood- The Wilderness Way
4.) Merle Travis- Walkin' the Strings
5.) The Browns- Town and Country
6.) Johnny Horton- Greatest Hits
7.) Brothers Four (self titled LP)
8.) George Jones
9.) Charlie Pride- Live
10.) Charlie Pride- The Country Way
11.) Harold Morrison- Hoss, he's the Boss
12.) Merle Haggard
13.) Jimmy Bryant- Bryant's Back in Town
14.) Johnny cash- The Fabulous Johnny Cash
15.) Johnny cash- Now There Was a Song
16.) Alley Cat- Green Onions (Bill Justis Plays 12 Big Instrumental Hits)
17.) Hank Thompson- Live at the Golden Nugget
18.) Flatt and Scruggs
19.) Kingston Trio (self titled LP)

Mom had quite a few of Jim Reeve LPs, she was a Jim Reeves fan.
After my Dad died she started listening to Don Williams. Don was her musical therapy


We think about and appreciate the major African/American contributions to the world of art, music and society but not much is said or written about the Native American musical heritage. Here's a brief list of just some of the musical artists of note:
Hendrix- Cherokee blood
Link Wray- Cherokee
Robbie Robertson- Mohawk
Neville Brothers- Choctaw
Charlie Patton
Corey Harris- Choctaw
Howlin' Wolf- Choctaw
Buffy St. Marie- Cree
Johnny Cash
Jesse Ed Davis- Kiowa
Robt. Trujillo (bass player for Metallica
Rickey Medlocke (Lynyrd Skynrd)- Lakota Sioux
Pat Vegas (Redbone)-Yaqui-Shoshone

A WEAPON CALLED ART - December 4, 2018

Conductor Rafael Schachter, a prisoner at Terezin concentration camp organized a bunch of musicians and vocalists to performed Verdi's Requiem in 1944 for the prisoners and later on some of the higher up Nazis. He chose Verdi's Requiem Mass but because of the lyrical content he chose to do the vocals in Latin. Here is a peek at the lyrics:
"The day of wrath
that day will dissolve the world in ashes

How great will be the terror,
when the judge comes
who will smash everything completely

Whatever is hidden shall be revealed
and nothing shall remain unavenged."

Can you imagine this? Art was the defiant weapon of choice here. For a re-performance of REQUIEM, which was done in honor of Schachter and the inmates at Terezin, I highly suggest the DVD DEFIANT REQUIEM by Partisan Pictures

VIDOR - December 3, 2018

Talking with friends about travel and the adventures of the road I decided to bring back a story I told you about a few years back. It was around Christmas time that I was down in east Texas, west of Beaumont and South of Vidor. I found myself on a back road in the bayou country near Port Arthur. It was getting late in the day and as I was driving south I saw something in the distance that at first looking like a lone skyscraper out in the middle of nowhere. I was charmed by this and figured I would drive to it and see just what it was. As I kept getting closer and closer I became more puzzled. Then when I got up to it I saw that it was a huge bridge that went over a great mass of water. There are probably a lot of these in the Gulf Coast areas around Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, and so on but this was the first time I had ever seen anything like this.
A word I use to describe this part of East Texas in mystical. What a mystical part of the country this is.


The plaque reads: "We may not have it all together but together we have it all."

SUNSHINE WIND - September 11, 2018

I'm standing on the corner of Today and Forever More
Well, I'm standing on the corner of Today and Forever More
Stormy weather made me forget what I was standing here for
-Sunshine Wind

(c) R. W. Noom

THE STORY, REVISITED - August 1, 2018

The Jakester continues in the pruning process. And with it comes the return of "the story":
Some of you may remember me telling you the story about the two teachers who were on a tour of the Gallo Vineyard. As they were moving along one of the teachers noticed that some of the good grapes were cut down and left on the ground in the process. One of them asked the tour guide to stop and then asked, "Why are they cutting off and tossing out so many of the good ghrapes?" The tour guide answered, "because it makes the grapes on the vine better."

We're all balancing multiple things (with me 10 things at once) and it is wise to think through time management and think through what's really going on. This makes me think of the booklet I have somewhere entitled "The Tyranny of the Urgent." One of the majestic lines from the book is "good things should never take priority over the best things." I can do a hundred good things, but is this authentic productivity?

*note: I am also reminded of Steve Covey's Four Quadrants in his book "The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People." You will notice the most productive quadrant is the "Important but not Urgent" quadrant.

LEON VOLTERRA - May 26, 2018

I get a kick out of stuff like this: After watching the vintage French film "Marseilles" and the documentary with it I heard the story of Leon Volterra's penguins. Leon bought 175 penguins from the South Pole for his Lune Amusement Park. His friends told him that they would not survive in the climate of Southern France. "But they're from the South Pole," He told his friends. When they arrived only 30 or 40 of them survived. He eventually earned millions from his amusement park. I just laugh that he thought the South Pole penquins could handle the warmer climate because they were from the South Pole.


I finally got the chance to watch all of the George Harrison's "LIVING IN THE MATERIAL WORLD." It covers a long space of time. Beatle fans and Traveling Willbury fans with both appreciate this documentary. One thing that really impressed me was what George's wife, Olivia, had to say about marriage. She said when friends ask her what the secret is to a long marriage, she replied, "You don't get divorced." While not going into detail about the difficulties of being married to a famous and loved person she did share this:
"You go through challenges in your marriage. Here's what I found: When you go through things there is an incredible reward at the other end. You learn something. You let go of something. You love each other more. Life shapes you and takes away some of the rough edges."
She later said, after talking about having 30 years together it came down to George saying, "I hope I wasn't a bad husband," and her answering back, "I hope I was an okay wife." She said they were so glad they kept walking the path together. Her conversation was deep, saturated with love and wisdom. I was greatly impressed.

In the documentary Tom Petty was talking about George calling him when Roy Orbison died. Now George is gone as well as Tom Petty. Bob Dylan and Jeff Lynne are the only two Willburys left.

BLUES IS - February 10, 2013


The first blues that I remember hearing other than what I heard in the cotton fields and the jukeboxes of West Texas was Bob Wills' music; the Milk Cow Blues, the Basin Street Blues and all the bles that come from Texas Swing.
-Willie Nelson

Different folks have a different idea of what blues is or how it should be delivered. A major blues magazine reviewer wrote that my stuff was more blues than a LOT of blues that's out there, but a local blues person said my stuff wasn't blues at all (and he was reffering to my Blues Guitar Deluxe CD). Add this to all the times I would get ready to play and somebody would say, "I really don't care for the blues," only to have the same person say, "That's the kind of stuff I like!" at the end of the night; after they had heard my material.

The blues is a personal statement made in musical terms which is nevertheless valid for all members of society.
-Frank Tirro

The blues as such are synonymous with low spirits. Blues music is not. With all its so-called blue notes and overtones of sadness, blues music of its very nature and function is nothing if not a form of diversion. With all its preoccupation with the most disturbing aspects of life, it is something contrived specifically to be performed as entertainment. Not only is its express purpose to make people feel good, which is to say in high spirits, but in the process of doing so it is actually expected to generate a disposition that is both elegantly playful and heroic in its nonchalance.
-Albert Murry

Like Hank Williams or Bill Monroe, Link Wray was also taught by a bluesman (his name was Hambone).

Isaiah Ross, alias Doctor Ross the Harmonica Boos got the nickname "Doctor" while in the military.

Howlin' Wolf was in the U. S. Army: Pvt. Chester Arthur Burnett, Picket line Troop G, 9th Cavalry.

I love the blues and I have great respect for the blues, but in this day and age, I'd like to try to keep the ball moving forward. -Damon Fowler

Because I had heard the innate rhythms of a people. My connection was that the world was missing out on not hearing what I had heard as a child. Memphis was the inducement- I mean, going out and hearing a black man pick a guitar and pat his foot and put a wood box under his foot to pat as he sings.
-Sam Phillips

It is important to remember that blues is an emotional music and is based on a musical "groove" that is meant to inspire the message.
-Bob Schnieders

If I came on with the lowdown blues like I've done in the past, the kids wouldn't dig that. But with the kinds of things I'm doing now they'll accept it and I can come back later to the lowdown blues.
-Albert King

It was Armstrong's soulful blues playing that got him his first real jobs, working in three piece bands.
-Jazz (concerning Louis Armstrong)

They learn in suffering what they teach in song.
-Shelley, the poet

As in all sweetest music, a tinge of sadness was in every note. Nor do we know how much of the pleasures even of life we owe to intermingled sorrows.
-George MacDonald

The mark of rank in nature is capacity for pain, and the anguish of the singer marks the sweetness of the strain.
-Sarah (Sadie) Williams

You can hear a good song and you enjoy that song, it uplifts you. It's almost like a dose of medicine.
-Big Lucky Carter

When I first started playing guitar it was way up in Seattle, and they don't have too many of the real blues singers up there. When I went down South, all the cats there were playing blues, and that is when I really began to get interested in the scene. I just listed to the way people played blues guitar, and I dug it.
-Jimi Hendrix

Pink Floyd, formed in London back in 1965 to play a mix of R&B and blues, were first named Pink Floyd Sound by guitarist and singer Syd Barrett. The band was named after two Georgia blues artists: Pink Anderson and Floyd Councel. As the band's music changed, so did the name.

The bands Moody Blues, Lovin' Spoonful, the Rolling Stones and even Badfinger all got their band names from blues songs.

The Yardbirds started out as the Metropolis Blues Quartet (MBQ). It was singer Keith Relf who suggested the name change, Yardbirds meant "hobos who hang around train yards."

Starting out as a Jimmie Rodgers disciple, Gene Autry cut blues tunes and covered Rodger's hits for dime-store labels until he got lucky with his hit song "That Silver Haired Daddy of Mine."

Western-Swing bandleader Bob Wills was very much into black music, jazz and blues. He did his own arrangements of "Sitting On Top of the World," "Corrina Corrina," and "Brain Cloudy Blues." It is documented that he once road twenty miles on a mule to see Bessie Smith perform.

Twenty-year-old Les Paul made his recording debut playing on Georgie White's "Trouble In Mind."

Before ZZ Top, Dusty Hill and his brother played with Freddie King's backup band (for three years) and in 1969 Dusty backed up Lightnin' Hopkins in Houston.

I think the biggest problem with the blues now is there is a lack of people doing something different with it.
-Joe Bonomassa

Jazz horn-man icon Sidney Bechet was blown away by a blues line he had heard while being in jail (after being picked up for being drunk and disorderly).

These are the words he heard his fellow prisoners signing in the dark:

Tied in a hundred feet of chain

Every link in the chain was an initial to his name

Warden came early that morning for him to be hung

On account of something he hadn't done

"Oh my God, that was a blues," Sidney remembered. "The way they sang it there, it was something you would send down to earth if it had been given you to be God. What you'd send your son in trouble if he was on earth and you was in heaven."

Once I began listening to the blues and realized I was a larger spectrum of music, things really opened up for me. That kicked it up a notch. I felt that I was becoming a guitar player, that t5he blues had broadened the scope of my instrument.
-Jeff Carlisi, founding member of 38 Special

Gregg and Duane Allman decided to form a band after catching a BB King show on a trip to Nashville

Steve Miller is actually a better blues guitar player than even most of his fans know. Back in the Milwaukee days his dad was very good friends with Les Paul and was even the best man at Les and Mary's wedding. It was Les Paul who taught Stevie how to play guitar. Then when the Miller family moved down to Dallas, guitarist T-Bone Walker used to play for parties in the family's living room. Stevie formed his first band at 12 years old. By 15 he was backing up Jimmy Reed in Dallas nightclubs. In Chicago Steve got to jam with a lot of the blues greats (such as Muddy Waters). So, Steve Miller is more than qualified to be listed among the blues cats. One of his later CDs, "BINGO", is an example of his blues side.


Yes, Chris Van Dyke passed away. He was a great keyboard player, easy to work with, dependable and fun to hang out with. He could do Beethoven (Song for Elsie) as well as rock and blues. He was the cat who played the organ on "Walkin' In the Sun," Percy Sledge's "Take Time to Know Her," "Texas Flood" and all the songs on the live bootleg "YEAR OF LOVE" videos. I'm thankful for all the trips he made down to Texas and other parts unknown. The news comes as quite a shock. He passed away October 13th. He was a Detroit boy up till the end. We last played together at the Blues Fest in Oxford quite a few years back. He was the real deal.

Azulado: blue-ish (in Espanol)

When you can do the common things in life in an uncommon way, you will command the attention of the world. -George Washington Carver


The first blues I can remember hearing:
"It's rainin' here, down in New Orleans
Lord it's rainin' here, down in New Orleans"
-Jimmie Rodgers, the Singing Brakeman

I don't even remember the third answer-back line of the verse but I remember the first two lines (or- the first line, then the first line repeated).

Some of you may not know this but I originally did the Blues Guitar Deluxe CD to show off my guitar playing and my songwriting (and to show everybody the type of stuff we were playing). I never dreamed that so much could come from a recording project! I have appreciated all the comments from the listeners, and I am still proud of the project (even though I would have done a lot of things differently). But, having said this I am really excited about this new material.

The BLUES GUITAR DELUXE CD won the 2004 Jammie Award for Best Local Blues Album and has recieved much acclaim and notice.

I tried to translate this from the Dutch:
"Maybe a good ancedote for the future"
"He really wants to say that we should dare innovate"
"It all sounds very good"
"Sometimes sober like somewhere on a cottonfield and then is like the rush live in N.Y."
"I can only give this tip: buy this food and a thousand times dispatch"

A fresh treat! What Jacob Clyde does is suberb!
-Erick, Blues & Company Magazine (France)

4 bottles for a True-Blues Indie release that will appeal to both Blues Guitar fans and Southern/Texas aficionados.
-Andy Grigg, Editor- Real Blues Magazine

The songs are well performed and the guitar work is excellent.
-Kristy Hanson, Music Revue Magazine

Jacob Clyde's versatility will amaze you.

This Texan-turned-Grand Rapidian who plays slow-cookin' blues guitar says he's "into doing a new blues thing." His approach owes plenty to old blues guitar greats, but he also spawns some chops of his own.
-John Sinkevics, G. R. Press

RSS feed