Ever have a thought hit you late in the day on a subject you may have covered a hundred times only this thought may have been the one you have been searching for all along? Now I know how a composer feels.
Most of you know of my dust up with the self-hating Jewish ( actually ex-Jewish as he was ex-communicated according to his face book page ) cabaret singer "Rich Siegel." In a recent private email Siegel said it was not his intention to "steal" my work but to instead give me "credit." He also mentioned affording an attorney was not possible at this point. An individual that is not even allowed into the state of Israel according to some sources must think highly of himself if he thinks I would be remotely interested in receiving "credit" from such a piece of garbage. I have also pulled reviews on Bill Doerrfield (simply because he was a major pain in the ass and it was almost like having a musical stalker) along with Nicholas Payton simply for his racially motivated sexist views on women as these are not my opinions - these come from reader feedback. A Publisher/Editor has the editorial license to take his publication in any direction as he should deem appropriate based on reader feedback. Recently I am dropping Smooth Jazz down to about 5%, only the best of the best. As you can tell, as with most publications there are major changes happening almost daily. I do not run a free publicity service so there are other aspects I have to carefully consider before taking action. I recently severed my ties with ECM. Great label, great people, great musicians but began finding the music as dry as dust. I review over 1000 releases a year and cuts had to be made somewhere. Outside of cornering the market on the piano trio, losing ECM seemed the obvious place to start. While I will miss our association, we are both better for it and looking back and seconding guessing yourself is never smart.
Siegel later opened an artist page on All About Jazz and willfully pulled my review after the request was made from the editor who subsequently then attempted to call me out in a way that was anything but accurate as did the Publisher. According to their logic, I could take a review from All About Jazz (the 4 or 5 that are remotely interesting) and simply post them as my own much like Siegel did my work. Yes....Siegel said it was my review and Yes...I would give A.A.J. credit as my source but how would their author feel about someone pilfering their work simply to gain readership, notoriety or in this case as I suspect - sell some records?
Comply with All About Jazz so as not to lose your artist page but tells me to f*ck off and be grateful for the credit he is bestowing upon me? The problem with this world today is that people don't stand up to people like Siegel. I'm still waiting on the promised lawsuit from both Siegel and Payton and all I hear are crickets chirping. Spending $125 for official copy right is well worth it to have Siegel comply with the letter of the law. It is not if it happens, it is when.
I will never accept credit from someone that has publicly disgraced our war dead, our President and evidently the President of a country he is no longer welcome in should my sources be correct. I have also published the evidence here on this site. I have a great many friends of the Jewish faith as I do of other races, orientations etc. and I would fight just as hard for them. On Siegel's own site he mentions being on the Mossad "watch" list which is roughly the equivalent of being on the no fly list entering our country. I don't question Siegel's politics. The man can vote for a lump of coal and worship a shrub as far as I am concerned. I question those of the Jewish faith he attacks repeatedly yet no one reports him and his face book page is alive and well. Never look the other way. Never turn the other cheek unless you want that one smacked too. I would urge those who are as outraged as I to boycott his disc as well as his sponsors and his list is posted on his blog so this is public knowledge anyone can obtain. Sure...When this incident initially broke I did what Siegel has done - contacted him way too many times. Perhaps double the amount he has contacted me BUT...wouldn't you? The local authorities found Siegel's claims so lacking in credibility and merit that they left my residence without as much as handing me a ticket or even getting a "warning" other than some good advice to have an attorney handle a civil matter such as this. Since Rich made the first public announcement of his pending lawsuit, I'll give him first shot...So far - nothing, zero, nada. Of course it goes back to Siegel's private statement that he really didn't have the money to spend but added his lawyer wouldn't take any of my "bull shit." If this was such an open and shut case for Siegel then where is he? Should the coward make good on his promise I suggest he buy a round trip ticket, bring plenty for cab fare and be ready to sign over the deed to his house as this will be about all he will have left. Bad publicity is just that - bad. I receive emails from all over the world referring to Siegel as a piece of sh*t and to not give up the fight. A columnist, critic, or journalist has far more wiggle room then a second rate lounge singer and Siegel would do well to remember that.
Mike Ricci went so far as to call me a cyber bully simply for attempting to defend my name and my work. I wonder how he would feel if the shoe was on the other foot. I have nothing personal against Ricci despite his juvenile cyber attack where the only thing correct was the spelling of my name. I figure with a blog as large as his, he must have bigger fish to fry. Siegel was merely banking on a bad split between myself and A.A.J in an attempt to use the old phrase divide and conquer to his advantage. Sorry Jethro, I read the same books you try to.
It boils down to this sports fans...Siegel has NO more right to tell me how to run my column then I do on telling him how to write a crappy song which he has down cold. I don't have to run to other publications for P.R. help and rely on people scared of being politically correct. I stand for what is true, right, and just. Case closed.