control

control is everything.  it is the reason for life, the way you sustain it and the way you maintain happiness.

the goal is to control YOURSELF.  no one else.  

no one makes you feel anything.  no one makes you feel lonely, rejection.  no one makes you feel loved or happy.  

it's a choice.  a choice that we all make in our every moment of life.  i think, what do i know.  my goal is control.  

no one other than myself.  you cannot control the outcome of others, you cannot keep tabs on anything or anyone.  when you hold onto things like that, ideas. concepts.  it's over before it began.  

let it go.  

the anger.  how belitted you felt.   let it go.  

your humble friend,

second hand king

"been a long time, i shouldn't have le-le-left you"

i went awhile without titling blogs with song lyrics.  

i just hate titling these things.  they aren't real.  it's a microcosm of ideas and thoughts that essentially do not exist to anyone other than myself.  

wow, way to write you off reader.  i didn't mean to, i just do that.  it's a habit, i'm sorry.  i never expect anyone to read these things.  i never want anyone to really but that's a dirty lie.  i do.  otherwise i wouldn't post them.

i have millions of words ive never shared.  ideas i've never let see the morning light of day.  you know, i'm not sure this helps.  but i know i feel better after these jobbled ideas so, i'll keep doing them.

i'll stop fucking around.  i've changed.  my life has changed. the big figures in my life -- each one has taken new meaning.  it's an exciting time for the artist as he holds on with all his might to dreams and whatnot.  

i'm right at that place that people start looking at you strange for saying "i'd still like to do this music stuff".  right in that sweet spot of people telling you, you are still young.  it's never too late.  you are walking down a path that you may never come back from.  well, i've always done that.   for better or worse, even when those that surround me couldn't understand.  

i've always walked my path.  and now, it's not such a lonely path.  i've taken a few for the ride.  companions, but you know my path isn't quite my path any longer.  it's a goal, idea, vision.  

my time is no longer my own.  it's of another, for another, by another.  it's strange when you think about it.

so, concerning my music career, it gets fun.  now more than ever, i can't be the lonely soul.  can't go off and fuck around, throw a bad show.  have a bad day.  now... it is time to grow up the way i've always dreamt of.  i know, you all say sacrifice, and give in to some of the things you wanted but... the truth of it for me, as it always has been is this has always been something more to me.

maybe it's baseball charm/magic.  maybe apart of me believes the symphonies on this earth are put here for a reason.   that there is something grand in all of this mess and mayhem, maybe secretly i'm an optimist who never came to terms with his endowment.  

whatever the case.  it's time.  

i'm sorry if it's been awhile since we talked.  i'm sorry that i changed for some of you.  this is not a foolish idea, for some reason it always comes back to the music.  the constant.  the one thing that beyond all things has always been there for me.  but, truthfully, i am the music and it's me who has been there for me.  when times were hard it was me, there for me.  maybe that's the truth of it.  maybe, i'm not so hopeless.  maybe.

your dear, complicated author,
Second Hand King.

"I see no changes, wake up in the morning & I ask myself..."

"Is life worth living or should I blast myself?"

I feel like that line, for some reason, has always been what comes to mind when I think of Tupac.  I'm happy I can't say the same, but maybe that's selfish considering.   This country is still so brainwashed, it thinks people need to stand for the national anthem.  Who gives a fuck?  He doesn't like it here & if you nitwits had half a brain, you'd realize you are playing right into his hand.  

Irregardless, I'm changing.  Dramatically.  It's amazing, you believe in yourself a little and you let a little light shine in and all of a sudden, you're not the "almost blue (really all the way blue" young man you once were.  I feel like my eyes are opened, and I see so much I didn't before.  

That means changes.  Can't go back now.  Don't have time for it.  I think people mistake happiness.

It's not, the great shit all the time.  It's not heaven.  Happiness is the good, the bad, the sad, the mad, the great, the joyous, all of those things and being happy is making peace with all of that.  It's just the peace of it all, it's not feeling good all the time.  We are all human for better or worse, we make mistakes.  Even Nietzsche, who famously penned "God is Dead", lost his head and wrote books as Jesus Christ.  

Did he though?

Off topic.

Kansas City, I'll always hold a little bit of grit and country because of you.  I enjoy that side.  We don't always get along, but I want to be happy with you.   Excited about this show on Sept 10th.  I can't say too much, but I hope you loyal readers are there.  For more than a couple reasons I can't explain right now.

What it always comes back to is the song for me, so no need to worry my friends.  No matter how far I go there's always that.  I don't know, I'm ranting.  It's amazing where my mind goes.  

I'm not running away anymore.  Running towards something now.  I see it.  It's right there,  but now, it's holding onto it all.

Your loyal confidant,
Joe.

a poem to miles

have i failed you?
have i lost?
why the distance?
why the cross?

all your buildings
now distraught
why this cliff?
why this drop?

was i born, wrong place
wrong spot?
why the distance?
why this cross?

you distrust me
oh miles, why now?
i need you to show me
someway, somehow

i feel so distant
on my cross
why did i fail you
is this my cross?

they look at me
like i belong
then like i dont belong

i cant tell
this feels like hell

miles, what can i do?
to be more like you
miles, what can i say
to be more your way

im lost miles, terribly lost.

Love Yourself

It's crazy out here, and seems there's no end in sight. Everybody has an idea and sometimes it's really hard to tell where a person is coming from. On the surface right now, it feels like everything is falling apart -- that's not true. There's plenty of people out there smart enough to realize the make up of a person isn't what you see in the mirror.

What we need more than ever is an opportunity to love ourselves. If you love and respect yourself, fight for what you truly believe in -- the ends will always justify the means. Whatever that means to you. I don't know your struggle, you don't know mine for the most part, but there's a reason compassion has the word passion in it. 

It seems to me, a lot of us are still trying to figure out what it means to give a shit about ourselves and others so we breed what comes naturally: hate. Hate in doses is good, as long as it's directed towards understanding and base. Hate, rage, blinds. We have to be aware of that. 

Whatever you stand behind, if you look at the guy next to you and your first thought is hate all the way towards death, you are doing it wrong. 

Love yourself, understand that love. Inside and out of it and maybe some of things will fall into place. That's what Kendrick was trying to get across. We just tend to focus on the loudest voices, right or wrong.

I'm learning too, let's learn together.

your pupil of an author,
Second Hand King

 

Thank you CHUCK & thank you others

Been awhile.  

Last thing I dropped in here was a bit of sad poetic babble.  I've tried to write in you a couple times.  Make that .. 4 times.  They are drafts.  This might end up as a draft.  I've been throwing out a lot lately.  

I'm changing.  

I don't know why this year, 26 1/2 years of life lived I decided it was time.  Tried last year and I guess it just didn't take.  This year it did.  

Let me start.  I meant to write about CHUCK.  I put the nail in the coffin Saturday.  I'll never forget what CHUCK taught me.  Never.  He taught me, there's something you can find in anybody.  Some relation.  I've always had an affinity for the strange, maybe because at times myself I have felt strange.   Me & CHUCK were two very different people.  Let me try this again...

I had the best performance of my career last Saturday.  Honestly.  & it pains me to move on from CHUCK the album because I feel like it's underrated.  It's my baby, of course I am supposed to say that, but I don't get what has repelled you so much from CHUCK, Kansas City.  Was he too weird?  Was it too weird that I felt he deserved an album?  Either way it doesn't matter now because it's done.  Dead.  Finished.  CHUCK will remain in the gallows.  
    
There weren't a ton of people there no, I didn't get my usual slew of press.  It wasn't packed like my last few headliners, but for the people that were there.  The room was electric.  I found my feet as a performer.  I can honestly say that.  It's harder to play a room when it's not a bunch of crazed Second Hand King fans but something happened that night.  "Turn the Ugly into Beauty".  That's what happened.  

Save the apologies, the "I meant to go".  You missed a show that will define the rest of my career for years to come.  I should apologize to you for not making it clear to you that this was so important.  If you made it and you are reading this, thank you.  Thank you and thank you for continuing to grow with me on this crazed journey.  

That show was special.  I'm on the right path.  I know this is where I need to be and there is no better place than Kansas City.  I'm not afraid of you Kansas City.  I'm not afraid of your barriers and walls.  You just need somebody to grab you by the neck and shake you until you wake up.  That's where I come in.  

Hello, Kansas City.  I'll be your alarm clock.  

I'm conquering from now on.  This half way bullshit stops.  Nobody has a blueprint to my life and I'll continue to follow my heart and gut until it's Are. Eye. Pee.   

If this makes sense to you dear reader, let's band together.  What took us so long?  Let's ride this thing together.  

Go time.  

Your humble / angry / oddly happy / thankful narrator,

Joe?

window pain.

I wear regret like a sleeve of chinese symbol tattoos
That all mean something obscene but truthfully I have no clue ...
You introduced me to my devil and made me bleed blue ..
Outside of my shell, I swallowed my hell until it grew ...

Old and rotten branches entwined with the afternoon dusk ...
I can't tell if mother nature created them through love or lust ...
I've been to heaven and I can say it's simply not enough ...
So I found my way from the night sky the way a painter finds it's brush ...

"I'm a dreamer aren't I?" I question myself as if I didn't know the answer ...
I hold my bottle of gin towards the side of my left pocket like a cancer ...
I drink so my problems drive home to court my dreams and romance her ..
I love this bottomless girl I've created but at the same time I can't stand her ...

Who are you?  

Why have you constantly stood outside my window pane ..
It may truly be sunny outside but I don't think it needs clouds to rain ... 
I've been the depths of the sea, top of every mountain and found this pain ...
That seems to control my very existence as if I could hold it and give it a name ..

"Nobody dreams anymore." 

I think, take a whisk from the chalace I so valiantly call my lonesome sorrow ...
Two left feet and a sense of wrong that still richocets from the bones I've borrowed ...
It holds hostage my tomorrow ... as if optimism is the last hope for this lonely astronaut ...
Who simply forgot all the things he's truly... got.  

Nothing seems real

It's all an illusion fused with some anti stimulus solution
Engraved in the markings of this liquid poison abusin' ... 

Lose feeling again.

I blink and for a second I catch wind of the blackness' true form outside of myself...
 No God to crutch on anymore ... no friends to call for help ...
I've exhausted all my options outside of this window pain ...
Inside of a house that doesn't want me as I feel the exact same ...

...a radio playing comes to echo the sound of an angel
I've found myself inside my hollow shell to be so painful
It reaches into my heart -- right through each one of the holes
Shines the light through to find the holiest of souls. 

Then I woke up.

12/3/2015: “Arriving Somewhere But Not Here?”

I think, and I freestyle these and kind of just type out whatever pops in my head, I think this will be a weird one.  If ever there would be that lives true to the Talk Strange name, I think this would be the one.  Why?  Because, I’m in a weird place.  The weirdest of all places.  Kansas City.

The city that gets it’s rep from the country side, that has a pretty decent amount of violence, a city that gets all four seasons (which I am personally a fan of), and really the only city I’ve ever known.  So that leaves me, the forever dreamer, am I in the right place?  

It’s a question I think every one of us artsy people ask ourselves.  Like, can it really happen here?  I started reading Steve Martin’s book “Born Standing Up”, which reminds me of this bad habit I’ve picked up.  I start something then have this issue of following through.  In fact, it’s really only a couple things in my life I’ve held onto: music, and the music.  Which bothers me, because the making of music is a pretty small part when it comes to being successful.  It’s like a quarter of the job, the other quarter is: promotion, networking, podcasting, music video making, show making, there’s so much shit that goes into it.  I’ve never, well maybe once after a really good day, but truly never felt like I’m caught up.  Probably because I don’t feel like I’m where I need to be at all in my music career.  

I’ve been lucky, me and my manager have hit a stride I feel like, I’ve slowly developed an almost cult following in Kansas City of people that probably go through the same shit as me.   Which begs the question, because the more I read, the more I realize – Steve Martin had his shit going on at a young age.  He was out there, broke like me, living life performing and giving it all he had.  He struggled but he found a way and that ladies and gents is what I want.  That’s what success is.  I feel like, I don’t know.  

I mean, people hear Kansas City and they write you off.  There’s media here, but the media here won’t make you.  Not trying to dog on my city at all, there’s a ton of talent here.  Most of the time I share the bill with them, but it took me a good while to garner a group of people that come to my shows.  Steve was out there, living life while I spend every waking minute of my life perfecting this craft.  I love it, but I’m almost 26 now.  Cold Shoulder isn’t charting yet, The Right Way isn’t charting yet.  It should of happened by now but that type of thinking only fucks it all up for ya.  Takes the fun out of it and that is the biggest injustice.  Lack of money already claimed one friend, how many more will it get?

I’m not angry, I just wanna know what I gotta do.  The waters seem murkier than ever, and I hate to say it but the day job is getting harder.  Not actually harder but mentally, it’s getting harder.  It’s harder in the sense that, I know what I want, how come it’s not mine yet?

Maybe this isn’t as weird as I thought it would be.  I didn’t really expect to spill out like this but this is just how my mind works.  I wanna see the light at the end of the tunnel, eventually.  It’s gotta be there.  People gave Tech N9ne shit for moving to Cali for awhile when I was young.  Now in this position, I get it.  He moved back, respect to him for doing that, I’ve seen him at a couple shows.  I doubt that he knows who I am, not that it matters.  

I know I can’t be the only artist in Kansas City that thinks the outside world holds Kansas City against us.  There’s plenty of talent here, a lot of these kids just need some direction so they don’t end up like Les Paul.  This post is getting long and I don’t really wanna go into that but I knew something was wrong.  When I first started out, he was a supporter and then it just seemed like he held something against me after a few years for some reason.  I hope he gets it together and drops the album he’s been talking about,  I don’t think success solves any mental issues but I do hope his quality of life improves.  

Anyways, Kansas City, I love you.  I always will, but the world doesn’t understand us.  All I can do now is hope someday it will, and the world gets to know the talent in this city because there’s a lot.  Especially right now. 

Your loyal-but-not-fully-oiled friend,
Joe.

11/22/2015: “Take It Easy”

I’ve sold myself short a lot.  

Talked myself out of things I rightfully deserved because I thought to myself “How could it be mine?”  "Why did I do to deserve this?“ .  

That’s over with.  2015 is about to come to a close & I know where I want to go.  There’s nothing in my way anymore.  While a lot of people have done the “happy” thing, I’ve been here.  Working.  Building.  Creating a future.  Creating something that I can be happy with and one day I will live off this.  

The second guessing, all that bullshit - it’s done.  That’s 2014.  It’s over with .  I’ve grown organically, the honest way.  As honest as they come I should say.  We’ve all got our skeletons in our closet but I’m done hanging out with mine.  

I’m a dreamer but the dream can only get you so far.  Wake up, smell the sniffing salt and realize the lies.  For me, being a piece of shit is wasting any moment on this earth and every time I do that - something suffers.  Work, family, music, all of it suffers because I am just not quite the man I want to be at that time.   

I think what it comes down to, is those who go big and those who don’t.  Dream big, work towards that goal.  Fuck anything that stands in your way, I mean - you sell yourself short with this halfway dreams.  You’re not a piece of shit.  No matter the mistakes you’ve made.  

Got knocked up?  Haven’t followed where you wanted to go?  Working a dead end job?   Not quite good enough at your craft?  

Fuck it.  Fuck it all.  Everybody castle crumbles down eventually, but you build back up because that’s human nature and those are the type of people this world needs.  A kid isn’t a life sentence, a dead end job isn’t the only thing in this world, and here’s a fact:  Not everybody is Micheal Jordan.  They just aren’t.  Be you.  Not Micheal Jordan.  

Fuck anything that doesn’t deserve you, and fuck anything that stands in the way of your big ole dreams.  

Your friend,
Second Hand King