Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I Miss You Steve

Your name is Steven. I always called you Steve. I never asked if it bothered you. If you minded you were too kind to say. I will call you Steven forever now – now that it doesn’t matter. It is just too hard to call you Steve anymore. Steve is alive forever. Today I start a journey to California and I will be taking Steven Bock with me one last time.

Your life was a full one. You actually were a rock star – not just an imaginary dream or a drunken tale – but an actual, honest to God Rock Star. If times had been different I might have written about your journey to the Iowa Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and your days in the California sun playing with most of the names people read about in Rolling Stone. But times were what they were and now I write this as you sit in Rock and Roll Heaven.

You made me laugh. We laughed as we shared stories about the 60’s and 70’s and what it was like for me to dream of being a rock star and for you to actually become one. We giggled like young girls as we gossiped about our friends and family - telling tales and exaggerating faults to create humor to hold back the darkness that waited just beyond our laughter.

You dyed your hair red. We were getting ready for one last tour, the Where’s Steve? tour. We spent hours at music stores talking about different types of guitars, amps and something you called heads. I tried to follow, but your decades of experience let you run through the terms too fast for me to keep up. It was okay. Watching your face while you talked was enough. I donated the amp and head we bought to Uptown Bill’s. New musicians will play it there. I will tell them your story, letting them know that the amp they play through once was played by Steven Bock of Truth and Janey, Steven Bock of Nowhere Fast, Steven Bock my friend.

You made a music video. You and Brenda recorded a song for David and me while Joe recorded it. I can watch it whenever I want to see you sing again. But I will have to wait a while. I will have to wait and see how I feel in a few months. Right now it is still too close to when I heard your voice and saw your smile. Your death still is too bitter.

You talked openly of death. I admired your bravery for choosing how your life would end. We weren’t sure of what exactly happens after death. We thought maybe it is just a change in vibration like changing keys on a guitar. I did make a promise. Wherever you go, if it is possible I will look you up. You can count on it.

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