Mar 24 2014

Use it when you’ve got it


Last week was Herceptin-only, which made it a much easier week, physically speaking. No massive doses of steroids, no Taxol.  A walk in the park, comparatively, although I do get wiped out, now and then.

But having some time during which I’m fairly energetic, I had to put that time on the most urgent things.   About which I’m sure you can guess…

Meanwhile, today back in the chemo suite for the big guns.   With the Taxol, I’ll be okay today, winding down tomorrow, more so on Wednesday and the mostly asleep until Sunday.

I don’t mind the chemo infusions themselves… as you know, I use the stuck-in-one-place time to good effect.

Today, while writing various things, I was listening to Pandora on my earphones  — but pulled ’em out when this gentleman came in:

John P Shannon Jr, soothing the weary chemo patients

JP Shannon Jr, soothing the weary chemo patients


It’s lovely to have some non-TV sounds in the Chemo Suite, and JP has some nice chops.   Instrumental only, and just acoustic, which is pretty much what I’d want while getting chems dumped into my port. I’ve also caught him playing in the more public areas of the hospital, when he uses a very nice amplifier that really makes the tone on that Taylor guitar shine.

As well as the usual instrumental suspects, JP has some unusual choices — for instance,  a version of Paul Simon’s Scarborough Fair/ Canticle that not only uses Simon’s accompaniment (which I always loved playing, because of the interesting fingering that makes the left hand go into this gentle rocking motion between positions), but also includes every sung note of the melody, AND every sung note of the Canticle  descant.   All on one guitar.  This definitely made me sit up and listen!

JP tells me he gets a lot of work at hospitals, nursing homes, recreation centers and the like. Which is what many of my folkie pals from New York did, and still do, to augment the non-existent remuneration of the hot folk music scene.

(And here’s his contact info, should you need to hire an instrumental diversionist in Southern New England:

If pure guitar is not your thing, here’s what Pandora fed me, literally just before John showed up:

One of my Pandora channels is called “Arrogant Worms” because that group served as the seed for the station.   And what did Pandora think was similar to The Arrogant Worms?  Barenaked Ladies, of course, and They Might Be Giants, but also Moxy Fruvous — who Sabine and I first heard at Newport Folk Festival, ages ago.

What is it about those wacky Canadians?