How To Herd Cats

This Is A Bit Of A Stretch…

Definition Of A Cat:

Evidently Cab Calloway coined the term in the 30’s. Back in 1938, he published Cab Calloway’s Cat-ologue: A “Hepster’s” Dictionary. Wikipedia has a great page on the origins of Jive; vastly entertaining.

A “Cat” could have been a jazz musician in a New Orleans whore house. Or simply the demeanor of players as they strutted on to stage or into their solos; stretching it out, like a cat.

So, yeah, I’m sort of using a double entendre here. Herding cats is a metaphor which emphasizes herding that which is incapable of being herded. Cats, i.e., musicians.

I have utmost respect for my friends who have been capable of keeping their bands together year in and year out with super low turn over of personnel.

My experience is contrary. I have run bands, with mediocre outcomes. I have experienced lack of interest, motivation and dedication coupled with politicizing. Let’s not forget about flat out prima donnas.

The same challenge has risen its head in the studio. Trying to keep folks focused, even on their own projects, can become totally frustrating. Scheduled day of recording, not even a phone call to cancel. Sure hope you ain’t hurt or in trouble. A text takes, what, 10 seconds, max?

How about all the times I have been asked to attend meetings in various projects in which I’m involved . Sometimes not even the person who called the meeting shows up.

The flip side; I’m trying to help others hook up with people who might be able to support and help. Ah, the beautiful Seattle passive / aggressive. “Yes, I will be there.” Not even a peep when the person doesn’t show.

My favorite: “Would you be interested in an interview?”

“Sure, how much you paying me?”

Only time will tell if you are that great.

Will a carrot and a stick work? How about a day timer and a whip? I suppose that’s not too practicable.

Last thought – A good friend offered me the chance to record my podcasts at his world class studio.

Instant scheduling nightmare.

Don’t you know, “I float like a butterfly and sting like bee.” I’m stealing quotes from Mohammad Ali.

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