DON'T Be Afraid to Begin Again 

Originalternativefunkjazzfusion Project SounDoctrine played our first gig on Saturday, January 12, 2002 at the Holiday Inn Metroplex in Liberty Ohio for the Northeast Ohio Gospel Music Expo. The Very Next Friday, we opened for the late blues legend Bobby "Blue" Bland at The Cellar in Struthers, Ohio. Founding Members included Cliff Barnes, James Herod, Jr., Phil The Beat and myself. Guitarist & Recording Engineer Rick Wilmitch who was in the studio working with us on our debut CD, "Perseverance" (released in October 2002) was added on guitar for the blues gig. 

Through varied personnel on stage and in the studio, SounDoctrine released four studio albums, a Live CD and opened for stellar acts throughout our glory days like Midnight Star, Felton Pilate, Kirk Whalum, Pieces of A Dream and Spyro Gyra. Our Music was frequently featured on The Weather Channel, we had worked with the iconic jazz master Bob Baldwin, excellent artists like Ragan Whiteside, received a fair amount of airplay and saw one of our singles crack the Top Ten Contemporary Jazz charts.

We've been on hiatus since June 21st, 2017. 

A Thousand Thoughts Go Through Your Head When You Look Around the Stage during Your Performance and Realize You Are The Only Original Member! The Sound has completely changed. These Players are Not the Keepers of the Initial Mission & Vision. They Don't Hold to the Core Values & Principles. They Didn't Even Bother to Learn All My Tunes and are Just Waiting for the Night to End so They Can Get to Their Next Better Paying Opportunity.

Something had to give.

I Knew Why. I had known for many months. There was No Single Issue, Really. Everything's Temporary. Life Will Change Again. And Again After That. But as the Band's Leader I had to Own The Truth. This Plane had Crashed. It was My Fault and My Responsibility to Sift Through the Wreckage. I'd made Seven Major Mistakes which were coming back to bite me hard.

What I Learned Was Valuable.

There were also other factors, a few of which were major priorities for me, but didn't seem to mean much to the other members. My Mother's sudden death in April of 2008 left me reeling at the same time we were gaining national momentum. My brief pause grew into a full stop causing core members to seek out and find greener pastures elsewhere. Who could blame them? It Took Me a Real Minute to Get My Head Back Together. When I Began Booking Again, I Often Needed to Employ "subs" as My Main Players became Unavailable. This Made Travel Outside of Our Home Base More Difficult and Expensive. When We Could Travel, Again We Employed Musicians, But Could Not Rehearse With Them and Somehow No One Had Time to Rehearse The Charts, So That Meant We Did a "Cover" Show, which hampered CD Sales. Creative Differences further eroded an already crumbling foundation and I could see fissures forming in my marriage, which by God's Grace, we have recovered and are now thriving. SounDoctrine was another story.

Although I Knew I Had to Stop, I Was Afraid. But,  I Was More Afraid to Begin Again. I Was Afraid of What People Would Say. We Had Loomed So Large, at least in Indie Circles and then Fizzled! Why Resurrect a Broken Dream? I Was Afraid of the Changes hat have Taken Place in this Industry since our Last Release in 2015. I Was Afraid I could not Recreate the Brand We were Meticulously Expanding to Secure a Firmer Position in the Marketplace. I Was Afraid I no longer had the Stamina to Unlearn & Relearn the Technology Absolutely Vital for Me to Win, Again. 

But I am Not Afraid Anymore.Yes,  The Risk is Greater, But the Rewards will Be Too!

I Began Incorporating "7R's" into My Vocabulary to Refocus My Objective. I trust that if You Too have Broken Through the "Terror Barrier" and are         Re-embarking on an Outstanding Goal which was Once Escaped you, these "7R's" will benefit you just as well.


Remember Why Your Passion bled into this Goal in the First Place!

Journal All of the Reasons You Originally Began With and Clarifying All of The Whys You Should Begin Again. Reconsider Each One. If It Resonates, Rev It Up!


Revisit Ground Zero!

If You Are Able, Return to All of the Places You've Experienced Triumph. Relive the Applause, Rethink the Skills & Techniques You Acquired that got you to that point. Then Rinse & Repeat!

I Spent Several Days Listening to All of The Music, Watching the Videos and Rekindling the Excitement


Re-Imagine What You Will Accomplish!

Get and Stay Excited About How Much Higher & Further You Will Ascend and More than Likely, Faster because You've Learned from Your Mistakes!


Reset & Reassemble!

Reach Out to Those who Once Traveled, Reassess their Value to the Team. Some Will Have Moved On and will Not Return, Others Shouldn't and Reconcile with These Whom Share Your Dream. Apologize if Appropriate for Mishandling Your Responsibilities and Rebuild Your Relationships! 


Regain Momentum!

Work Harder Than Ever to Reshape Your Imaging & Brand until it also becomes a verb!


Roll Out!!!

Visit "VISION2020" to Lean More


I was Listening to The Crusaders' "Images" on Vinyl while composing this post.

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