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The Good Life   Leave a comment

The Good Life

Country music stations are beginning to play “The Good Life,” so let’s share the news!

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Posted March 18, 2013 by Casey James Weekly in Uncategorized

Don’t Give Up Today by Worrying about Tomorrow   Leave a comment

I’m not the kind of person who counts chickens before they hatch, but my mind won’t stop at the thought of recently improved symptoms, and the possible remission of Parkinson’s disease. To get through each day, I promise myself that a cure will be available in my lifetime. At one time, I saw myself wheel chair bound before my youngest child reached third grade, and was ridden with guilt that my children will have to take care of me before I’m finished taking care of them.

I have always been an ox. I would run a race to win, be a super-mom, and even when taken down, I have always possessed the natural ability to stand up, brush off, and keep fighting for my own victory. After a certain amount of time though, boxing gloves grow worn, and accepting defeat becomes a new lesson in this game called life.

What am I getting at here? All of these random explanations are leading me to explain something. It isn’t easy to refrain from pondering “why” to anything thrown our way, but it truly is merely a waste of time and energy. Rolling with the tides and riding the waves is the better option, even when it feels so difficult to accept.

I have never approved of this medication that I reluctantly took for three years, as it caused me to obsess over food and anything else that I felt was a less destructive escape while preventing me from sleeping any more than four consecutive hours a night. Recognizing the side effects, my attempt to stop taking this drug was highly discouraged by the neurologist at the “movement disorder clinic.” The lesson here is clear. Don’t always believe everything a doctor tells you. When your instincts press you hard enough that you find yourself in a mental battle with a health professional, I suggest giving your gut another listen.

Over a week ago, one of my medications needed to be filled, and I failed to do it. Attempting to keep up with the new back to school schedule and children’s sports were difficult enough while juggling a nasty cold virus. Like most moms, my own needs were pushed aside, and I didn’t pick up the Rx. The next thing I knew, 10 days had passed without the required medication.

Strangely, my symptoms have improved. Even when the one remaining medication wears off, my symptoms are at a manageable level when they previously were not. Two weeks ago, if meds were not working at their peak, walking through a grocery store was virtually IMPOSSIBLE. Two days ago, when unmedicated, I was capable of getting through the store without much difficulty. I could physically DO it.

What does all of this mean? It means that I will focus more on “what” over “why?” As with anything life tosses our way, we should all expend our energy appreciating what we have today over what we do not have, what others have, or what we wish we had. Everyone has their crosses to bear. Allowing ourselves to worry about tomorrow is making the choice to give up today.

To Play Or Not To Play   4 comments

I am not musically inclined. There isn’t a spec of my body that holds a talent to sing, dance, play or even read music. When my ten year old daughter expressed interest in learning to play the guitar, I immediately signed her up for lessons in hopes that she would beat a case of bad genetics in the rhythm department.

After a few short months, the winter frost faded, and as the warmer weather presented itself, her interest to spend after school hours inside taking lessons quickly switched to riding bikes, and playing outside. Realizing I cannot force anyone into learning music, I let her off the hook.

Rather than canceling the long haired guitar playing hippie that comes to my house every Thursday, I thought I would try taking the lessons. Thinking the fine motor skill practice would be good for battling the effects of Parkinsons, I chose to take over. Well you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, and after a few weeks, the hunch I’ve always had concerning the fact that I have no natural abilities were only confirmed. I imagine some practice would help, but I suck, and it hurts my fingers. The hippie was extremely encouraging, so I pressed on.

This week. Guitar lessons. Once again, another hour of humiliation while I sit there confused. I’d prefer to pay the guy $25 to just play for me while I drink a beer and holler at the kids. I could listen to someone play acoustic all day long, and it makes me happy. Im pretty sure I’ve even suggested that to the hippie on more than one occasion, but he took it as a joke.

I dreaded this week, as I failed, once again, to do my homework. I couldn’t remember the C chord much less play it without muting it. I certainly didn’t learn to switch from the C to the D as he had suggested, and I still look at a sheet of music as if it was written in Chinese.

The hippie arrived his usual 5 minutes late, and I utilized that time to quickly review the C, just so I don’t look retarded this week. After all, any idiot is aware that just an hour of lessons once a week isn’t enough, and practice is mandatory.

He showed up armed with a song for me to learn. It wasn’t written in Chinese, it was written in English. The chords were written next to the lyrics as G, or C, and I understood it. It was a song I knew. A song I had literally watched evolve from its infancy long ago when it was freshly written all the way to the studio recording. In fact, I had reported every week on the chart numbers and for months watched it climb the charts to its peak at #20 as I cheered on the new artist.

I was initially intimidated, as my lack of skills would only be highlighted once again by my failure to practice. But something came out that I never even thought was in me, and I actually played for the first time, something that resembled music. A person with no rhythm just strummed a rhythm. Without even thinking about, it was just happening. I’m not saying that I sounded good, but I was doing it. I was hearing chords, and it was as if they appeared like magic.

Now, to anybody who has ever attempted to play, you are getting me right now. You may even shed a tear of joy. To all the others, I suggest picking up a guitar and giving it a whirl.

For each of you that are wondering, the song was a recent top 20 country hit titled “Let’s Don’t Call It A Night” by Casey James.

Posted June 22, 2012 by Casey James Weekly in Uncategorized

Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover   2 comments

Aware that I appear to the general public as young and pretty, nobody comprehends the fight that is endured to keep myself convinced of both. Randomly smacked by a rapid and unusually early onset of Parkinson’s disease almost 5 years ago, I struggle everyday to not let it govern me. When my youthful body freezes on one side, the fight to press on continues. I’m not gonna lie, it squashes me from time to time, like today. I want to hit the street running, and I can’t. By the time the children are off to school, and I prepare to run, my first dose of meds has noticeably began to fade quickly. As frustrating as it is, I resign, and hit the couch to write after popping my sixth pill for the day by 10am. Reminding myself that one day advances in modern science may present a miracle in the form of a cure, I dry my tears and suck it up.

Wondering how or why this has struck me is nothing but a waste of time. Yelling at God for cursing me with a case of bad genetics hasn’t gotten me anywhere. Freaking out and allowing consuming thoughts of the future hasn’t gotten me anywhere, except severe weight loss at the time. Resigning from my fight will not get me anywhere. Without an arsenal of Carbidopa/Levadopa and Mirapex, I cannot physically walk. I am extremely grateful for modern medication as a full dose of meds temporarily restores my ability to move completely, and most may never recognize there is a dreadful progressive disease lurking as I thankfully do not appear that way.

I detest pity, so please don’t go there. I have many blessings in life, and maybe one day I will even see this as one of them. That’s my goal anyway. I simultaneously accept and despise this failure of my brain to produce a much needed chemical, and I typically don’t whine about it. I’m a fighter, an optimist, and my reasons to fight are plentiful.

God doesn’t give us anything we can’t handle, but he has pressed my concern on this one. I’ve had to hand over my fear of the future, and anytime it crops up in my mind I quickly remind myself that the man upstairs has got it, and this will unfold as he has a plan. Believe it or not, when you fully lay out that trust, you become convinced of it. The result of such a predicament has forced me into a corner, and the only reasonable option is to leave it to Him. After all, we cannot control what life throws our way, but we do have the power to choose our responses.

So, I will go about my day, and will be just fine. I will laugh, and tickle my preschooler as he climbs on me while I lay here, and wait patiently for the meds to do their hard work. In a few short minutes, I will be normal again, and still as clumsy as always. Nobody will know that I had to resign from a morning run, and life will continue.

Now, if I could take a magic pill that would cause my laundry to appear neatly folded in everyone’s drawers, I would be even more grateful šŸ™‚

Have a good day, and don’t forget to count your own blessings.

Posted April 23, 2012 by Casey James Weekly in Uncategorized

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Go For A Run?   1 comment

Dragging my overheated body towards the self assigned finish line, I finally near the curb where the dumpster sits near this mornings lawn. Gazing at the blades of grass, I make a conscience effort to refrain from dry heaving in my own front yard. After all, the inviting weather has brought more than just myself out of the house. Basking in the feeling of relief that my jaunt was over, I feel that I’m instantly granted an accomplishment that isn’t derived from anything else. While experiencing the pants of being oxygen deprived, I stagger inside and do what no person should ever do after a run, and dive towards the couch.

After months of excuses wearing thing, and an abundance of nachos reeking havoc on my previous fit and trim size…the choice had to be made to get my ass moving. It isn’t difficult to make a positive choice towards my health. Too bad there’s a difference between deciding and doing. Making an executive decision has never been a difficult task, but the execution seems to hang me up more often than not, especially when it comes to voluntary self torture.

Nonetheless, the chirping birds and sweet smell of spring were encouraging in their efforts to persuade me to tie on my running shoes. The actual act of running for any grown person who is considered to be “out of shape,” is nothing but awful. Funny how you find yourself fighting and setting continual mental benchmarks in order to coerce yourself to travel by foot for a lousy mile. I would prefer to save running for being chased, and magically trade my fat for fit with minimal effort.

Not all runs are so difficult. It’s getting started that squashes future attempts. The first few pavement pounding efforts typically resemble a boot camp that you’d prefer to have never enrolled in. Aside from the physical strain and mental reluctance to continue, I cannot refrain from the thoughts of how pathetic I look. Out of shape and panting, I am fully aware that I should run in the dark as to avoid making a spectacle of myself publicly for all of my neighbors to see.

But I cannot give a hoot about them, because they aren’t the ones trying to squeeze into my britches that tend to pinch me in half as a result of overindulgence during Christmas festivities. Maybe next year I’ll skip those pizzas made with a tiny piece of rye that is so adorable and nearly impossible to overlook much less refuse. I can’t be the only poor fool who has procrastinated the workout return until spring weather slammed in like summer.

Please tell me I am not alone. šŸ˜‰

Posted April 11, 2012 by Casey James Weekly in Uncategorized

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The Hunt   Leave a comment

I easily recall slouching in my seat near the front of church while sitting next to my sister who resembled my twin wearing the same white eyelet Easter dress, including the purse and sandals. Easter morning memories are consumed with vivid thoughts of peeking outside in hopes of spying the tiniest glimpse of a colored Easter Egg. Twenty years later, my children tend to do the same, and I cannot control the giggle that erupts in my belly as I relate to exactly how they feel.

Spotting an egg prematurely just gives you an edge, a silent head start that could be extremely useful in the race against siblings over smelly, yet attractive looking eggs. Providing a starting point in mind, a premature egg spotting, in a sense, maps out the plan to conquer.

Something always goes awry though. It never fails, that someone else shows up sharp as a tack that day. Seeming to have particularly and sudden sharp vision, someone will become the Egg hunt champion. Everyone is fighting hard to win, but really why? Surely the children aren’t collecting rotten eggs to eat. Not me anyway. After my dad forced me to eat brown farm eggs that tasted like bugs, I haven’t touched another egg, and I probably never will.

The children run like maniacs in their attempt to get the most rotten eggs, meanwhile, it provides free entertainment for any adult. The only drawback is that someone will lose. Losing the egg hunt may very well turn into a devastating experience. Last place prizes are highly recommended in my opinion.

Don’t miss this video of the loser, and the lesson. Please excuse my continuous laughter while filming. Enjoy.

Posted April 9, 2012 by Casey James Weekly in Uncategorized

Who is Casey James?   19 comments

Armed with an upbringing rich in musical exposure, a God given talent, the strength to fight adversity, and an arsenal of guitars, Casey James began his journey as a Sony/BNA 19 recording artist in 2010. For the Cool, Texas native who could sing before he could even talk, the dream of having a record, has finally arrived. ā€œIā€™m going to work as hard as I possibly can to respect the benefits and the gifts that I have been blessed with,” Casey explained. Having a hand in every second of creating his album; from co-producing with Chris Lindsey, to covering his own guitar work, and co-writing 9 of the 11 album tracks, all of which is practically unheard of especially for a new artist.

Today, people see a pretty boy who can beat up a guitar and even hum the crowd into a trance, not to mention his bluesy, tender, sultry vocals. Casey James is more than blonde locks and a handsome face. A proud product of humble beginnings, his childhood was rich in musical exposure. Mom Debra James facilitated a strong musical background for both of her boys, Billy Cole and Casey Everett, to the point that they are both extremely talented musicians with a freakish range of musical knowledge and influences. Billy Cole, who is 7 years older than little brother Casey, is currently performing throughout Texas with the Matt Kimbrow Band playing bass guitar. Talented and handsome, BC seems to have inherited the James family traits.

By 17 years old, Casey was working as a musician. By 22, he was wheel chair bound, and suffered severe injuries as the result of a near fatal motorcycle accident. No ability to turn his left wrist, and not capable of walking, the young musician began his fight. It didn’t happen overnight, but by 27, Casey James had conquered the ability to re-learn how to walk, kill the guitar, and had returned to his life as a working musician. Playing gig after gig, for practically free, until his fingers bled, Casey James felt blessed to be alive, and was happy to just do what he loved.

In 2009, Casey caught a break; an opportunity in which he wouldn’t waste a snippet of, by earning a spot on the hit TV show, American Idol, season 9. Taking the bronze in 2010, his farewell performance of John Mayers’ “Daughters,” didn’t signify the end of the road for Casey. In fact, this was just the beginning of the order of events that unfolded into today.

As of March 20, 2012, Casey James finally has an album in stores. The magic of his music is the repertoire of blues, Texas country, folk, pop and rock that uniquely sets his style apart from other artists today. This melting pot of genres could be just what the music world is craving today. “Casey James” collaboration of tracks conveys messages of heartache, solace, longing, faith, simple pleasures, triumphs, and especially love. The album is well crafted as the tunes reveal a story line when played in sequential order. The last track should be seen as a bonus, perhaps, as Casey tells a story of its own during this one, and he personally describes it as passionate, intense, deep, and emotional. It’s a thought, a piece of Casey that he has chosen to share with his listeners. Titled “Miss Your Fire,” the tender yet whispering vocals showcase an attractive and sultry Casey. You may purchase the album online at iTunes and Amazon, and it also available in stores.

After a two-year wait, Casey James fans are more than anxious for the rest of the world to discover what they have known for years.For the original fans who have literally waited, tweeted, voted, traveled, and stepped outside of their comfort zone to promote Casey’s music; the insane transformation and creative process has unfolded before our eyes. We have felt a tiny part of his journey, and witnessing great things happening to him, causes us to feel joyous and proud. We have witnessed his music evolve from that first night on stage opening for Sugarland, to Nashville’s Country Music Festival Lays stage, the release of his first single, the Opry debut, and finally the album debut. The experience has been unforgettable. Friendships were built, and strong ties with the James family unexpectedly grew as they so openly accepted us.

During the past two years, we have celebrated many milestones: from the signing with Sony/BNA 19, the move to Nashville, endless debuts, the release of his first single, a title of “country musics next biggest star,” a 2nd Opry stage performance, and the wait for the first album is over. Many dedicated supporters have worn out this first record, and are ready for the second. Our support is still needed more than ever.

Inside the CD cover, you will find Casey’s thank you that begins, “First of all I’d like to thank God for letting me live long to enough to make an album.”

Posted March 19, 2012 by Casey James Weekly in country music, country rock, Pop music