I'm laying here in the hospital, awaiting my surgery tomorrow. To clear up any questions, I broke my back ( L4 vertebrae ). I'm very lucky to not be paralyzed. I was thrown through the window of our rolling van, after hitting a patch of ice. I have a full torso cast on, keeping my back straight. I just started eating again so now I can take some percoset which helps with my intense back pain. All in all, I'll be ok and the minute I can have a bass in my hand and be playing in front of people again I will. It's all I know how to do and the only thing that makes me happy.
Once hearing about all of the support from friends, bands and fans, my spirits where immediately uplifted. All we have in this world are each other, and in times of tragedy, you find out who is by your side until the end and who is bullshit. Thankfully our music community surrounds us by mostly heartfelt people who are going out of their way to help us in our time of need and to help us keep our dream alive.
John Beatz was someone I looked up to, yet I walked beside him as a contemporary. I learned from him as he learned from me. We started playing in bayside 14 months ago and have both realized that our whole lives had been lived to get us to this point, so we spent the time working our asses off and making sure that that this band was going to succeed in what we wanted: having people hear our music.
With his passing, we realize he paid the ultimate price as all of us would have or else we wouldn't have been beside him. We live for rock and roll and when you believe in something enough, sometimes you die for it.
What I want everyone out there to realize is the sacrifice every member of every touring band makes. Safety, money, health etc. All of these things are a distant second to our music. People get vans, trailers, equipment and other personal items stolen, we play in unsafe neighborhoods, we travel far distances in sometimes unsafe vehicles and unsafe weather. My point in all of this is that we are a community, not a business. Support and understanding with an open mind are what's most important in our lives. Not record sales. Whether or not you like a band you must realize that bands are giving their all for what they love, including their lives. Showing your faces at shows and talking to us and letting us know you appreciate the music and the hard work is infinitely more important than the business side of things.
I'm happy to have my life, I'm happy to have known John and I'm happy to still have a band. Please give your time and respects to John's family and wife. All he ever did was speak of her, and every ounce of energy he put into his life was for her. Hopefully we can all have love like that in our lifetime.
See you all soon