Cycles of Life

Philadelphia, PA – Late 60s – Early 70’s

The first childhood vehicle I ever had was a little metal pedal car. I don’t remember much about it, but I had heard from my father that I didn’t like it. It was a beautiful little car.  Odd, you’d think I would love something like that but he told me I didn’t have much interest in being inside it.

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The next was a little kid’s bicycle. It was a red Schwinn Pixie boys bike with training wheels. My father liked Schwinn bicycles. I can’t blame him. Schwinn made bikes that were durable and virtually indestructible. I remember them being heavy bicycles when many were lighter in weight back then. I don’t even think you could put air in the tires of the Pixie. They were solid rubber.

Schwinn Pixie kids bike. | Kids bike, Schwinn, Bike

I loved that little bike. My older sister had a blue Schwinn bike but I can’t remember the name of it. It may have been called a Bantam. The cooler girl’s bike made by Schwinn was the sportier, Lil Chick.

VINTAGE 1977 CHICAGO Built Schwinn Bantam Convertible 20" Girls/Boys Bicycle Org - $125.00 | PicClick

All the while my little sister rode around on a tricycle.

I was happy on my little Pixie bike, but one begins to notice some of the other kids in the neighborhood beginning to ride bikes without training wheels. It was a natural progression for all children to want to grow up and have more freedom. But there’s always the fear factor of trying new things.

My father would be out in front of our house with us teaching us how to ride without training wheels. It became an ongoing story in our family’s history of my dad teaching me how to ride. He knew that once I got it I’d be fine and that it was all a matter of confidence, speed, and balance. But the story was that he’d be running along, holding onto the back of my seat and me being terrified.

“Dad! I’m going to fall!”

“I’m not going to let you fall. I’m your father!”

It’s funny now, but I remember thinking back then, “I get that, dad, but what if you trip and fall? It could happen. Then I’ll careen into the bushes!”

I suppose it was just my early anxiety about doing anything different or new, but he kept at it. Me nearly in tears, pedaling like my life depended upon it, and him holding on and running behind me.

But then one day… off I went. Like magic. I pedaled and kept the bike going, thinking my dad was still holding on to the back of my seat and thinking how is he doing this? But when I hit the brakes and stopped, I turned around and he was thirty feet behind me standing on the sidewalk, hands in the air, smiling ear to ear.

They say, ‘it’s as easy as riding a bike’, and it’s true. It is easy. Once you can do it, you never forget it. You simply feel your center, maintain your balance, and move forward. I think that principle can be applied throughout your life.

Learning to ride a bike is your first step to independent freedom away from your parents.

Mid 70s

Eventually, my older sister got a bigger girl’s bike. It was green. It was a solid conservative ladies’ bicycle. It was classy, just like her.

So my parents gave me her old blue girl’s bike. But at the local bike shop, they bought a bar for it that ran from the seat to the handlebars so that it was now distinguished as a ‘boys bike’. Funny how you had to add something to a bicycle to give it a gender. But it originally was based on design, structure, and stability. The only reason girls’ bikes didn’t have it was because many years ago, women’s bicycles were designed without a bar to accommodate their long dresses.

So with the bar, it was now a boy’s bike. But based on some of the newer designs in bicycles I was seeing around the neighborhood, I wanted to trick out this blue Schwinn Bantam.

My friends and I had become literal whizzes when it came to bicycle mechanics. With a set of tools, we could completely take a bike apart and put it back together again. So I wanted to take this former girl’s bike and ‘Frankenstein’ it into something cool. The first thing I did was spray paint it gloss black.

My mother took me down to Morie’s Cycle Shop on Rising Sun Avenue, just beyond Levick street. I remember the bike shop always had a distinctive smell. It was that fresh vulcanized rubber smell. Our sense of smell is our most primitive sense, and the memories it provides are always extremely vivid. If I walked in that place today it would take me right back to that day.

It may have been my birthday. My mom let me pick out a black banana seat with silver sparkles, a tall sissy bar, big fancy handlebars, and a fat rear tire that was called a slick. I also found an old bike in the trash and sawed off the forks in the front and added them to my bike to create a look that resembled a chopper.

chopper is a type of custom motorcycle that emerged in California in the late 1950s. The chopper is perhaps the most extreme of all custom styles, often using radically modified steering angles and lengthened forks for a stretched-out appearance. They can be built from an original motorcycle that is modified (“chopped”) or built from scratch. Some of the characteristic features of choppers are long front ends with extended forks often coupled with an increased rake angle, hardtail frames (frames without rear suspension), very tall “ape hanger” or very short “drag” handlebars, lengthened or stretched frames, and larger than stock front wheels. The “sissy bar”, a set of tubes that connect the rear fender with the frame, and which are often extended several feet high, is a signature feature on many choppers.

sissy bar also called a “sister bar” or “passenger backrest” is an addition to the rear of a bicycle or motorcycle that allows the rider or passenger to recline against it while riding. Alternatively, it can serve as an anchor point or support for mounting luggage or equipment that’s not part of the bike.

Perhaps the best-known choppers are the two customized Harley-Davidsons, the “Captain America” and “Billy Bike”, seen in the 1969 film Easy Rider.

So, it went from this…

VINTAGE 1977 CHICAGO Built Schwinn Bantam Convertible 20" Girls/Boys Bicycle Org - $125.00 | PicClick

To something like this…

VINTAGE 70'S CHOPPER 20" Muscle Bike Banana Seat Bicycle ! Beautiful Purple! - $175.50 | PicClick

Except my sissy bar was tall and rose three feet off the seat, so you could lean back on it and pop wheelies. If you didn’t have a back fender when you rode through a puddle, you got a line of wet mud up the back of your shirt!

So, now the bike was cool. What was better than speeding down the street and then suddenly slamming on the breaks and hearing your back wheel scream as you left a long skid mark on the asphalt?

Another thing we used to do that all boys had done probably since the 50s was to clip a playing card or a baseball card to the back frame with a clothespin. The card protruded into the back spokes of the wheel. This way, when you rode along, the card flicking against the spokes at high speed would create the sound of a motor. It was cool for a while but the clothespins always broke or the card wore out, and it just became a pain to keep putting a new one back on your bike. It sounded too thin anyway and I wasn’t much of a fan. Also, if anybody can do it… it stops being cool.

So we came up with a better idea. If you could get your hands on a balloon, like the kind they gave out at Weiss’s Kiddie Shop, you could make something better.

You blow the balloon up, but only partially. You push the air inside toward the center of the balloon. This way, there’s still plenty of uninflated balloon on each end. You tie each end to the back frame of your bike so that the inflated part of the balloon is facing towards the spokes of your back wheel. You can do this same process with a regular round balloon, but if you can get a long balloon, it’s a little more durable for the beating it’s about to take.

Make Your Bike Roar Like a Motorcycle : 5 Steps - Instructables

It blows away the sound a little baseball card clipped to your frame sounds. A balloon sounds like the real deal. Me pulling up on my chopper bike, with a balloon hitting the back spokes is amazing. It’s about as close as you can get to the sound of a real motorcycle. I kid you not.

Check it out!

How great is that? Totally badass. Even on a little kid’s bike! When we all rode up with balloons in our spokes on our choppers, it was like being Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper. We went from a group of boys on their bikes to a full-fledged, motorcycle gang.

I’m telling you, back in the 70s life was way more fun out in the real world than sitting around today in your house playing a bunch of video games.

We even formed a little bicycle gang called The Raiders. I think this inspired my sister and her friends to start a girl cycle gang called The Jewel Thieves. (If I’m wrong about this, my sister is free to correct me.)

Another thing we loved doing was going on what we called journeys. We would ride our bikes really far from our homes. Miles and miles away from our neighborhood. It was amazing to have that first taste of absolute freedom from your block and your parents. We were a little group of outlaws traveling to parts unknown.

The euphoria of the sudden drop at the top of Martins Mill Road. That long black ribbon that was the steepest hill in town. Like some dark dragon, you had to conquer. You wanted to feel the excitement and speed as you descended that incredible slope. But the fear rode right along with you, knowing that if you weren’t ready to hit the breaks in a split second, it could end in tragedy. All of this energy coursing through your body as cars sped by alongside you, all the way down.

You knew that if you returned home on this same road, the climb would be nearly insurmountable. It became steeper the higher you climbed. Your young heart pounding, your lungs burning as your legs pushed on. You could see the top. But could you make it?

You couldn’t give up in front of your friends and get off and walk your bike back up the hill. You had to show everyone you were strong enough to make it. A simple right of passage.

We would mostly follow roads that led west into Cheltenham and Burholme Park. I loved going on bicycle journeys. You could go anywhere you wanted back then and your parents had no idea where you were. As long as you appeared again at your home before dinner, you were fine.

No internet. No GPS. No cell phones. Nothing. Just you and the road. No leash. No helmets or pads of any kind were worn by any child in the neighborhood.

Which in hindsight, would probably have been a good idea back then based on the way we rode.

Evel Knievel was a national treasure back in the 70s and we all loved him. He was a guy who would get on his motorcycle and do these crazy jumps over cars. He was a mad daredevil who had broken every bone in his body.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evel_Knievel

So being a bunch of 12-year-old boys we were compelled to emulate him on our bikes. Not jumping over cars, but we would set up these little ramps with planks of wood and stacked bricks. We would speed up to the ramp and fly off it. Thinking back on it now, it wasn’t that bad, but we were always crashing on our bikes.

70's bike jump ramp inspired by Evel Knievel | Bike, Bmx, Bmx bikes

Not us, but you get the point.

Ramps made out of two stacked pieces of wood...the kid whose Dad was least likely to throw it out was the one who… | Free range parenting, Childhood, Funny pictures

Not wearing any safety gear, there were plenty of injuries. Kids were always crashing their bikes because we were on them all of the time. We would go everywhere on them. You had no money so it was your only means of transportation away from your parents. Plus, if you decide to start trying stunts there are sure to be some banged-up kids.

But we never lost anybody. None of us ever got hit by a car or anything. The only injury I can remember was on a bike I owned in I think 6th or 7th grade. It was a beautiful brand new red ten-speed that were all the rage as we got a little older.

Red Tenspeed Bike Stock Photo - Download Image Now - iStock

I loved that bike and rode it everywhere. One afternoon I was stupidly racing another boy down Rising Sun avenue and my tire got stuck in the trolley track. I went flying face-first to the asphalt and cobblestones. My glasses broke, and the left side of my face was really torn up. I remember getting up off the ground and just feeling the searing pain in my face.

Amazingly, a man stopped in his car, put my bike in his trunk, and drove me home from the accident. It was a miracle of kindness. I can’t remember his face or his car. My mother was shocked at how bad my face looked. She said she never even got the man’s name to thank him. Just a kind-hearted person who did the right thing. (So whoever you are sir… Thank you!)

My left eyebrow had several large X shaped cuts, and my whole cheek had road rash. I’m surprised my injuries weren’t worse. My left eye was black and blue and swollen shut. It looked like someone had beaten my face really badly. My mom kept me home for a few days, but I recovered. I wish I had a picture of how bad it looked but I don’t think any exist.

But, other than that, we always enjoyed our bikes. I remember even when I was later married in the 90s, we’d be at the shore in Avalon. I’d get up early and rent a bicycle and just ride around town. All the way down to Stone Harbor and back. It was a welcome early morning repose away from my wife and my inlaws.

Even into his 80s, my father always loved riding his bike. He told me he just loved hopping on it and sailing along down the street to run his errands.

There’s something about just jumping on your bike and taking a ride. In a car, it all moves too fast and it’s like watching a movie. It’s as if it’s all happening on TV through the windshield.

But on your bike… you’re always in the movie.

That youthful freedom. The wind in your face as you made your way to your next destination.

A talent once learned as a child that could never be lost.

Unlike our youth.

Always fleeting with each turn of the pedals beneath our feet.

 

Tune in this Thursday for the next installment of, Back The Tracks – Part 5 – Refrigerator Box!

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

You can check out my books here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Phicklephilly – Do It Yourself

“What’s with all the ads on my favorite blog?”

It’s been an interesting time during quarantine due to the Covid-19 crisis. I’ve had the pleasure of finally taking a rest from working 55 hours a week on my feet in a business that’s incredibly challenging. My daughter and I worked in the same industry, and we both agree that we needed a break. I think the workforce as a whole needed a break.

The first week or so it was just strange. Then we sort of settled into the fact that we couldn’t go to our jobs anymore.

What would we do with this sudden, paid free time?

We’ve had some ideas.  I decided to make phicklephilly.wordpress.com into my own domain. I bought Phicklephilly.com four years ago and own it. So I called the nice folks over at GoDaddy and had that integrated into my site. Now it’s more searchable on Google and has brought so much more traffic to the site. If you google phicklephilly now, it’s the first thing that comes up. That, and my books.

With that came wordpress ads. They run ads on your site, and that generates revenue. You have to complete a bunch of forms for that and give them all of your tax info. Because it’s real income.

But here’s the thing… the revenue for the ads run is minimal. They’ll serve thousands of ads on your site. But the return is tiny. Phicklephilly has been around for over four years and I have a tons of content. (Over 2,000 posts) I’ve always been prolific. I figured, more content, more page views. It worked, but I’d probably need millions of page views to make any money from these free ads thrown to me by wordpress.

I’m not complaining, but I felt I needed to do more. So I recently signed up for Google Analytics. That opens up the world of Adsense. Once that’s processed over the next few weeks, that’ll generate ads on my site which will equal more revenue. I’m looking forward to that. The site is really coming into it’s own. We’ve hit 50,000 page views so far this year, with 84,000 visitors, 2200 subscribers, and over 147,000 page views since its inception. So, we’re growing.

But while writing Angel with a Broken Wing, there was something nagging at me. The itch I had to create was being satiated by writing the book, but I felt there was something more I could do for Phicklephilly. The little blog that started me on this journey shortly after the death of my father in 2016.

I started to think… I’m putting all of these pieces together, is there something else I could do?

While creating Angel with a Broken Wing I would listen to music on Youtube. I’ve been listening to everything! It’s been great, but sometimes between songs they run these commercials. I don’t really mind it if it doesn’t go on to long. I grew up in a world where radio and TV were supported by commercials.

I worked in advertising for 10 years when I returned to Philadelphia from New York back in 2007.

I remember as I was typing one day, this ad came on for a company called, Dr. Squatch. I stopped what I was doing to watch it. Normally, when people are enjoying  a show or listening to music, all they want to do is skip the ads. But Dr. Squatch’s ads were so good, I was captivated by their brand. It was a brilliant, fun campaign to promote their male hygiene products. You know an ad is good when you WANT to watch it because it’s so engaging.

It got me thinking… all I did for 10 years in Philly was sell advertising. Digital advertising. For Philly.com, a happy hour website, and Philly Weekly. I started with nothing at all three of those companies and made it work. Most people don’t like to sell, or can’t sell. Either you have it or you don’t. No one likes rejection, and that’s 95% of sales. You need mad game to sell. It’s a ruthless, thankless business. But perfect for me. An over achiever with low self esteem, and a track record of closing impossible deals. In banking as a broker I was a million dollar producer every year. At Philly.com I was billing $40k a month. It all comes down to who will relentlessly make calls on clients, meet with them, close them, cross sell them, and get referrals. Then repeat that over and over again. That’s sales. Just run down the game and kill it everyday. Like a lion on the savanna, you hunt every day to feed your cubs. Most days you go hungry. But you keep at it. Most don’t have the will to keep at it. But if you do, like anything else, eventually you’ll make a kill.

So, here I am creating content for my dating and relationship blog here in Philly during quarantine. How can I write a blog like this in quarantine? I feel like I’ve been grounded by my parents and I can’t go out and do what I do socially.

But, while I’m waiting for WordPress and google analytics and adsense to all come together for me, I should maybe try to do what I’m good at.

Sell digital advertising while I’m waiting for them to get their act together. It’s what I’m good at. Selling stuff. Any job I’ve ever worked where I don’t get to create or sell stuff I usually fail. Because we have plenty of people that are built to take orders and work hard to build somebody else’s dream. Business leaders love cheap labor.

Don’t get me wrong… Phicklephilly, and writing books isn’t my dream. The only dream I ever had died 40 years ago in Los Angeles as a failed rockstar. Now the only dreams I have come to me during slumber and that’s just my brain dumping thoughts, feelings and images to keep me sane.

Phicklephilly has been a glorious hobby. Yea, it’s a hobby. If you don’t have a hobby, you should think about maybe getting one. It’s a lovely release from all of the things you HAVE to do everyday to survive. It’s a sweet little pleasure that you get to create.

It’s kind of cool to watch something that started as a passion or a hobby become something bigger. It’s like a garden. You tend the seeds and the plants and vegetables, with water, care and sunlight. It starts to grow. Because you care about it. You like it. It’s fun. It feels good. It’s not a job to pay the bills. It’s your thing. It belongs to you. 

I don’t know why I never thought about this back in March, but I guess I was busy writing my book. But it started to work on me about two months ago. Back in May I decided that part of my day would be dedicated to going through all of my leads and contacts. I have hundreds from New Jersey, New York, and obviously Philly.

I would spend only one hour a day for 60 days going through all of my social contacts, (business ones, not you drunken assholes) business contacts, business cards, Linkedin, old sales files from the last 20 years, and see what that would yield. I called on every advertising agency in my old book of business. I knew if I dug into all of my New York contacts, I could mine some gold. Sometimes the one hour goal would stretch beyond that, but I wanted to do it everyday consistently. I didn’t talk about it to anyone, in case it never came to fruition.

Which brings me to this.

The sight obviously looks different. Especially the sidebar. I wanted to fit them all in where I could.

At least for now.

What’s weird is… I remember being contacted years ago by acquaintances that had attached themselves to me like sea lampreys in the industry. They had their websites about Philly, or food, or music. They always wanted me to sell ads for them on their sites. I have no idea what their business plan was for their sites, but I can guess. Write a blog with some relevant content about something they were passionate about. But somewhere they thought they’d like to run ads on their site and make money. Sadly, they didn’t possess the ability to execute that part. So they approach some schlub to do it for them. They have no revenue to pay said individual. Sadly, all of those sites have failed, and hopefully those folks found jobs somewhere. I get it. Great idea. Poorly executed.

But don’t be nice to me thinking I’m going to do your job for you. That’s just fiction, man.

Most writers can write, But there aren’t really any writers out there that can sell.

So, I’ve been digging in hard everyday for the last few months to maybe monetize Phicklephilly. There’s no way I’d do this for free for someone else’s little dream, but for my little hobby…sure.

I haven’t sold advertising since 2017. But I still have all of my contacts from my corporate life. I haven’t had a platform worth selling anything on. But the cool thing is, Phicklephilly just sort of grew like a weed over the last 4 years. It grew because I gave it a lot of love. (Along with all of you reading this!)

So here we are.

Funny what you can accomplish when you don’t have a job to go to.

I know for the moment the site is looking a bit cluttered, but I wanted to show everybody that decided to run on my site. I’ll clean it up, and WordPress and Google will help me out.

I’m blown away by the support that all of these brands have brought to Phicklephilly. 

I want to take a moment and thank everybody!

ALYAKA, AQUATALIA, BERETTA, BERRYLOOK, HARD TAIL, TRETORN, BUXTON, EVERLAST (You guy have been great! I appreciate all of the rapid responses!) FREDRICKS OF HOLLYWOOD (I have a story for you guys from my youth when I first saw your ads in a Hollywood gossip mag!) GRAND SLAM – NEW YORK, JACH’S – NEW YORK, KATY PERRY (Katy… your agency is a delight to work with!) LANCER, LIFELINE, LUVYLE   (I love you guys! Thanks for Berrylook!), MADDA FELLA, MADISON STYLE, PURLISSE, ROYAL DOULTON (Thank you guys in London for being first!), SLEEPSTAR, SMOKO (Beautiful ads, guys!), WATERFORD, WEDGWOOD, YOUNGBLOOD MINERAL COSMETICS (Best models ever!)

You guys rock! You’ve all been so kind and patient with me. I can write, but I suck at all of the technical stuff. I just love that I was able to pitch you guys and you got it. I can’t run all of your stuff all of the time, but I’ll do my best to promote your brands on the site to the best of my abilities!

Thank you!

(If any of you readers have any opinions about the way the site looks, please let me know!)

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

My new book, Angel with a Broken Wing is now for sale on Amazon!

 

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=charles+wiedenmann&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

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30 Celebrities Photoshopped Side-By-Side With Their Younger Selves Show How Aging Has Changed Them

I know this isn’t my usual dating and relationship content, but I love these!

Dutch graphic designer Ard Gelinck makes time travel possible. At least, for celebrities. Gelinck has been photoshopping famous people as if they’re hanging out with their younger selves, and the images come out so cool, you can’t help but wonder if some of his subjects have them framed.

Gelinck has worked on these photomontages for about 10 years now, but it doesn’t look like he’s running out of ideas. On the contrary. The graphic designer continues to delight his 258K Instagram followers with regular uploads. Continue scrolling to check out the latest ones, and for his earlier works, fire up Bored Panda’s older articles here and here.

This post may include affiliate links.

Matt Leblanc

ardgelinck Report

The graphic designer said he’s always trying to challenge himself when it comes to Photoshop. “The ‘Then and Now’ series is quite old when you consider that me and my brother made the first image for it about 10 years ago,” Gelinck told Bored Panda. “About 5 years ago, I edited pictures for a lot of Dutch celebrities and it was a success, so I then started working with foreign celebrity photos. The first one was Madonna, and she even posted my image on her own Instagram.”

The Queen of Pop, however, isn’t the only Gelinck subject who has publicly admired his work. Rob Lowe, Tina Turner, Lionel Richie, Annie Lennox, BeeGees, Jason Priestly, Keshia Knight Pulliam, Carice van Houten, Sylvester Stallone, Robbie Williams, Michael Douglas, Ricky Gervais, and many more have also given him a shoutout. “When I think about it, the list is quite impressive,” Gelinck said.

Carrie Fisher

When the Photoshop wizard is composing the pictures, he’s often trying to make the subject and their former self embrace one another, be it an arm on the shoulder on a hug. “[The actual pose] depends on a lot of things. I’m trying to find one where they’re standing next to each other.”

The graphic designer thinks that his project has become so popular because people enjoy taking a trip down memory lane. Each of Gelinck’s images is like a shot of nostalgia that brings back past moments of enjoying music chart hits, TV shows, and movies.

Daniel Radcliffe

David Bowie

Ryan Reynolds

Kevin McCallister & Macaulay Culkin

Jennifer Aniston

Conan O’brien

Tom Hanks

Robert De Niro

Brad Pitt

Queen Elizabeth

Will Smith

Pierce Brosnan

Tom Felton & Draco Malfoy

Ricky Gervais

Hugh Grant

Dave Grohl

Julia Roberts

Matthew Perry

Harrison Ford

Mark Hamill

Peter Venkman (Bill Murray)

The Rock

Sean Astin

Jamie Lee Curtis

Dolly Parton

George Michael

Whoopi Goldberg

George Clooney

 

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Buy Phicklephilly THE BOOK now available on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

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Tales of Rock – The Best Band You Never Heard – Sheavy

Formation and name change[edit]

Sheavy formed in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada in 1993, and originally performed under the name Green Machine. In 1994, the band discovered there was another band in the United States with the same name, so a decision was made to rename the band Sheavy. The band’s repertoire originally consisted of a sampling of Kyuss covers and an assortment of originals that would eventually make their way onto the Reproduction E.P.Slaves To Fashion, and ultimately Blue Sky Mind. A three-song 7″ vinyl record was recorded in early 1995 at Jolly Roger Studios in St. John’s. The band regularly performed in and around St. John’s for the first few years at small clubs and venues such as The Loft, Sam Shades; Junctions and the LSPU Hall.

Record deal[edit]

The band recorded and mixed their debut album Blue Sky Mind over a single weekend during the summer of 1995. Later that summer, the band’s bass player Paul Gruchy amicably left the band to focus on completing his university studies. There were about 1000 copies of the album released early in 1996, at which time Keith Foley also stepped in to complete the Sheavy line-up as the band’s bassist. Although the audio quality of Blue Sky Mind was low, the original master tapes later revealed a much-higher audio quality existed. On the strength and popularity of the recording, however, Rise Above Records in the U.K. signed the band to a three-album deal. The band now had more resources available and were better prepared for work on the second studio album.

The Electric Sleep[edit]

The Electric Sleep was recorded in St. John’s in the summer of 1997. Recording Engineer Don Ellis helped the band capture the simple, powerful sound they’d been searching for. The result was an album one British reviewer deemed “the best Black Sabbath album in 25 years.” Black Sabbath comparisons were nothing new for the band, but for every review filled with praise another came along that maintained they were little more than clones. The album’s doomy title track could even be found on the web described as a lost Sabbath track. After a short tour of the U.K. and an invitation to play the Dynamo Open Air Festival in the Netherlands, the band headed back to the studio.

Sheavy lineups
1993(as Green Machine)
1994–1995
1996–2004
2004–2005
2005–2008
2008–2009
2009–2012
2012–Present
  • Steve Hennessey – vocals
  • Evan Chaulker – guitar
  • Jason Williams – drums
  • Glenn Tizzard – bass

Celestial Hi-Fi[edit]

Recorded in the summer of 1999, in the workshop of Ren Squires’ parents home, Celestial Hi-Fi, showcased the diversity of the Sheavy sound. The delicate nuances of “Persona” gave way to the doom of “Tales From The Afterburner,” while tracks like “What’s Up Mr. Zero” and “Strange Gods Strange Altars” illustrated the band’s ability to throw hooks into the mix. Reviews of the album were generally positive.

Synchronized[edit]

In October 2001, the band converged on Keith’s new home in EdmontonAlberta to write and rehearse for what would become the Synchronized sessions. Recorded in November 2001, with former Black Sabbath Producer/Engineer Mike Butcher at the helm, Synchronized once again saw the band diversify its sound with the addition of synthesizer, piano and drum loops. Despite, and perhaps because of the addition of Butcher, the album has been described as the band’s least Sabbath-like release and nothing less than a sincere tribute to ’70s rock. Written largely in the studio due to time constraints, the album’s rock-solid production showcased a raw power unseen on the Sheavy’s previous releases.

In September 2004, the band reunited in St. John’s to begin writing songs for a new album. Due to a number of outside obligations, consummate band leader and drummer Ren Squires stepped quietly out of the spotlight. Kevin Dominic, a long-time friend of the band, was brought in to keep the rock n’ roll machine running. By November the band emerged with 11 new tracks. Over the next month, with the help of friend and Producer Rick Hollett, the band tracked Republic? above a Duckworth Street club called The Republic. Billy Anderson mixed Republic? in San Francisco, California, and the album was released on Rise Above Records in 2005.

In 2006, the band travelled to Europe for a two-week tour, which included a number of countries and festivals.

The Machine That Won the War[edit]

On March 3, 2007, Sheavy filmed a live performance at the Holy Heart of Mary High School auditorium in their hometown of St. John’s. This performance was released as a DVD that accompanied the CD. The band recorded the studio album via analog instead of digital, and vocalist Steve Hennessey acted as the producer. The CD booklet features panels of artwork by a number of Newfoundland musicians and friends connected to the band, including two panels by Sheavy’s original bassist Paul Gruchy. Each panel is directly inspired by, and corresponds to each track on the album.

Following that release, both Tommy Boland and Kevin Dominic amicably parted ways with the band. Evan Chaulker, who had previously toured with Sheavy, was brought in on guitar, and Jason Williams joined the band on drums.

The Golden Age of Daredevils/Disfigurine – Present[edit]

In April 2009, original guitarist Dan Moore resigned from the band and announced his decision to the band’s Facebook fan group – both via email. The band enlisted guitarist Chris White on guitar and premiered the new guitarist and new material at local St. John’s venue Distortion in October 2009. Recording began on a forthcoming album, Disfigurine, roughly around the same period. Prior to its completion, though, the band took up the RPM challenge, which invites musicians to record a whole album of music, 10 songs or 35 minutes. The end result was an album entitled ‘The Golden Age of Daredevils’ which was released in late May 2010 and included songs written by the new lineup as well as material written by Dan Moore prior to his departure. The album ‘Disfigurine’ was later released in August 2010. Featuring a more metal style and some of the longest songs the band had ever written, Disfigurine pointed to a number of stylistic changes for the band.

The band played a handful of shows in the St. John’s area between late 2010 and 2012 but song writing continued at a steady pace. Citing personal and family commitments bassist Keith Foley and guitarist Chris White parted ways with the band in the spring of 2012. In order to keep the song writing process rolling Steve asked local St. John’s guitar players Barry Peters and Glenn Tizzard (bass) to get together to jam and write. While Tizzard was able to join the band on a full-time basis, Peters helped to write and record but was unable to fully come on board due to out of province work commitments.

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Demos/EPs[edit]

  • The Reproduction E.P. Cassette (1994)
  • Slaves to Fashion Cassette (1995)
  • Untitled 3-song 7″ EP (1995 Mag Wheel Records)
  • Born Too Late split CD with Church of Misery (1997 Game Two Records)

Compilations appearances[edit]

Video[edit]

  • Republic? at the Masonic Temple DVD (2005)

Live at Holy Heart bonus DVD in the deluxe “Machine that won the war”

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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The One Personality Trait You Need To Be Irresistibly Attractive — And How To Get It

Be the one that commands attention.

When it comes to attraction, charm, and magnetism, what do attractive people have that makes everyone like them without even trying?

How many times have you been at a party when someone enters the room and immediately commands everyone’s attention? Have you ever thought, “I wish that was me”?

As it turns out, it can be — you just need to embody one specific personality trait.

So, what makes someone attractive and charming? It all comes down to charisma. And the good news is scientists have proven that charisma is a trainable trait.

The game-changing step to becoming more magnetic is learning how to be present and live in the moment.

Think back to the last time you were in contact with a true charmer — you probably felt connected and special, like you were the only person that mattered at that moment.

That’s because captivators understand the sheer power of being and living in the moment.

Did you know that the human mind reads facial expressions in as little as seventeen milliseconds?

This means that “fake” listening is impossible. As soon as your mind wanders, subtle subconscious facial movements and body language take place.

Whether your eyes gloss over or your effect has a split second delay, the other person picks up on those indicators and knows that you’ve lost interest.

You end up pissing off your friends, insulting your partner, or disrespecting your boss all because you’re trained by society to be partially present.

In a culture that encourages multitasking, it’s never been more difficult to pay attention.

In fact, according to a 2,250-person study from Harvard University, we miss out on 50 percent of our lives by not being present.

The world can be your oyster when you learn the art of being present in the here and now.

Whether you want to climb the ladder or become the envy of the party, tap into this powerful skill and you’re one step close to getting what you want.

How does your lack of presence affect your personal and professional life?

It’s seen as rude and inauthentic, which basically means that nobody will trample over others to get to you nor will they trust you.

No matter if you’re trying to win over the guy, half-listen to your wife’s sob story during the big game, or survive your boss’ boring story about his pregnant poodle, you’re a fraud and everyone’s subconscious knows it.

But, the good news is that presence is a learned skill. All you need is practice and patience.

To get you started on learning how to live in the moment and train that personality trait of charisma, here are 2 exercises to try.

1. Breath Meditation

This exercise is super easy, all you have to do is breathe.

Breathe and pay attention to how the air flows in and out of your body. Do that over and over until the time is up.

Start this practice for 30-seconds every day for the first week and then increase by 2-minute intervals each week until you can sustain focused attention on your breath for 5-6 minutes.

2. Chocolate Meditation

Yep, you read that right!

Place a foiled Hershey’s Kiss in the palm of your hand. Take a moment and look at this tiny piece of goodness. Next, slowly peel back the wrapper and pay close attention to the increased chocolate aroma spilling into the air.

Place the bit of heaven on your tongue and just let it sit. Notice the texture and taste. Slowly allow your mouth to move the chocolate around.

Try and make it last for as long as you can. Your goal is to have this exercise last at least 5 minutes.

When your mind wanders — and it will — just gently bring your awareness back to the exercise.

How do you know if you’re fully engaged? There are 3 signs.

  • You feel what the speaker is describing: If they describe a moment of humiliation you experience signs in your body that only gross embarrassment could illicit.
  • You’re captivated: You’re so in the moment that you can experience what they are feeling inside their own body — relaxed, irritated, or maybe stressed.
  • The story gets juicier: When the speaker feels your undivided attention, they will become more and more vulnerable — it’s a beautiful process.

When you notice that you’ve trailed off, simply take in a deep belly breath and tune back in.

Yes, it’s that simple to learn how to be more attractive.

Start this week and retrain your brain to stay in the moment.

Commit to 30-seconds a day for a week, and you’ll notice a difference. By the end of the second week, others will take note. You can even go for the full 21-day challenge and you’ll be the person that commands the attention.

Pure attention is extremely rare these days. That means that you can take advantage of this little trick and reap the benefits from your discipline.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Buy Phicklephilly THE BOOK now available on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

Instagram: @phicklephilly    Facebook: phicklephilly    Twitter: @phicklephilly