I often find myself perplexed at being a union member in Texas. It has always been a battle. I just wanna say "free market, my ass". I was on a wedding reception job in Dallas on August 13 and could not believe what we went through. The client was John Alexis (owner of TJs Fresh seafood). Our band Memphis Soul gave this guy a 20% discount of fees. We learned several songs above and beyond the norm. Usually 2-3 is fine but he dictated 10-12 new tunes. Crazy huh? It gets better. We played the gig, dressed in Tuxes, and even played overtime 15 minutes. All was cool. At the end, leader Brad Mezei tried to collect our balance and was told by Mr. Alexis, I need to discuss it later/tomorrow. He never responed to our requests but soon referred us to his lawyer. He claimed, he and his wife were not pleased with the song selection (that he chose).

Fortunately, we had a contract and our local AFM 72-147 Union took the lead to collect. Mr Alexis/cousel quickly was ready to settle (although at a reduced rate). We did accept the payment but it still shows how little respect much of the public has for artists and how important it is to be unified and active in a labor union. I hope that no one who reads this ever eats at TJs Fresh seafood and can pass this along. We need all the support we can get to battle this kind of treatment.

Stay Union, stay strong!

FINGERPRINTS BAND'S DREAM LIFE RELEASE CLIMBS JAZZ CHARTS Dallas, Texas, October 23, 2010 — Fingerprints' recent release, Dream Life, reached number 16 on the SmoothJazz Indie charts for the the week of October 4th and debuted at #48 on the National Jazz Chart. Fingerprint's producer/bassist Frederick Nichelson cites the band's longevity and growing national fan base as catalysts for the rise. Nichelson said "We're excited about the increased national exposure for Dream Life. It's a great CD and more airplay means more music lovers can discover that." Nichelson added "We're looking forward to more fans discovering our music. They can find it on iTunes, CDBaby and our website, Fingerprintband.com. Our live performances are listed on our website and we always have CDs for sale." Fingerprints is a Denton, Texas-based band that features smooth, instrumental jazz and R&B-driven vocals. The band was formed in 1986 and plays over 100 annual shows. Fingerprints records on the Pacific Coast Jazz label and past releases include the self-titled Fingerprints, Reunion Live, Summertime Music and DNA.
Oct 12, 1970-Jan 19, 2010 It is with both comfort and sadness that we report the passing of musician Lumark "Mark" Gulley. Many folks around Dallas, Baton Rouge, Jackson, MS and the Mobile area will know Mark as a multi-instrumentalist and arranger. He was always writing and thinking about music. I can personally say that there was very little music that Mark was unaware of. I hope you all can take a listen to his debut solo CD called Printilla (2000). It was just a peep into what was to become. I can remember many encounters with Mark, where I saw his deep spirit and connection to his LOVE of music. It was always clear. Sometimes, so intense, that few could relate. Looking back he was that purist and perfectionist that we can all strive for each day. Being real, we also must learn that to everything, there is a season. Though only 39 years young, Mark lived each day for that day. It shows in his life's work. Funny how people think our birthday and passing day are the most important dates and always stamped on our tombstone; it is really that little dash in between that is most important. I hope that we all learn a lesson and pay closer attention to our health and bodies. Get regular check ups and stay close to our famlilies, friends, and loved ones. It may be the the biggest lesson we get from seeing such a talented and kind spirit go to the next plane. R.I.P. our friend and brother.

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