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Anthony Story

WHEN ANTHONY WAS JUST A BOY, LIVING ON THE EDGE OF TOWN IN AN OLD BEAT UP APARTMENT BUILDING ON THE SEVENTH FLOOR IN BROOKLYN WHERE ELEVATOR NEVER WORKED AND THE STAIRWAY WAS ALWAYS DARK SO THE KIDS COULD HANG OUT AND SMOKE THEIR CRACK AND ROB THE OLD LADIES OUT OF THERE MONEY FROM THEIR SOCIAL SECURITY CHECKS. THE OTHERS STAYED INSIDE THERE APARTMENTS TOO AFRAID TO OPEN UP THEIR DOOR. AND FOR ME I ALWAYS HAD TO BE CAREFUL TOO AND LOOK OVER MY SHOULDER AND KNOW WHEN TO RUN AND WHEN NOT TO SAY ANYTHING IF I’M CORNERED EXECPT GIVE THEM WHAT THEY WANT AND THAT WAS ALWAYS MONEY OR A LIGHT FOR THERE SMOKES OR EVEN TO BE A LOOK OUT WHEN THEY NEEDED TO STEAL FROM THE CORNER STORE BY KEEPING THE OWNER BUSY.
THE BLOCK WASN'T SAFE EITHER ESPECIALLY IN THE NIGHT THE COPS WOULD NEVER RESPOND TO OUR CALLS FOR HELP. I ALWAYS THOUGHT THEY WERE PAY OFF OR GIVING SOMETHING LIKE MAYBE ONE OF THE GIRLS TO DO THERE TRICKS ON THEM. OR MAYBE THEY JUST DIDN’T CARE OR MAYBE JUST AFRAID TO GET A BULLET IN THEIR GUT PASSING THRU THERE VEST. CAUSE WE ARE THE HIGHEST CRIME AND MURDER RATE IN THE WHOLE DAMN CITY SAID THE DAILY NEWS. WE MADE THERE HEADLINES ALMOST EVERY DAY LIKE MY DADDYS NEWS STORY GOING OUT ONE DAY FOR WORK AND NEVER MAKING IT TO THE SUBWAY GOT HIT BY A STRAY BULLET AND DIE ON THE SIDE WALK.
THE REPORTER ARRIVE TO WRITE HER STORY SHE ASKED ONE OF THE MEMBERS FROM THE RED DRAGONS WHAT HAPPEN BECAUSE HE SAID HE’D HEARD IT AND SAW IT FROM THE CORNER. THAN LATER THE COPS ASKED HIM HE SAID THE SAMETHING. HE TOLD THE REPORTER HE HEARD THE SHOT COMING FROM ACROSS THE STREET I THINK IT WAS FOR THAT KID FOR DATING THE WRONG KIND OF GIRL IN THIS PART OF TOWN. I SAW ONE OF THE LAST’S OF THE DUKE’S STREET KINGS DO IT HE’D THINK’S HE COOL IN HIS LEATHER AND CUT UP JEAN JACKET BUT HE IS NOT ANYWAY THE DUDE MISS THE SHOT AND THE OTHER DUDE BOUGHT IT.
TWO DETECTIVES CAME THE SAME DAY FLASHING THERE BADGES KNOCKING ON ARE DOOR SAYING DOES MR MARTIN LIVE HERE MY MOTHER AND I SAID YES THAN THEY TOLD US THE BAD NEWS
SAYING SORRY FOR YOUR LOST LEAVING MY MOTHER AND ME IN TEARS. THAN SAYING WE MADE AN ARREST. THAN AGAIN SAYING BEFORE LEAVING SORRY FOR YOUR LOST. THE NEXT DAY WE BURY MY FATHER MAY HE NOW REST IN PEACE. ANOTHER MONTH WAS COMING TO AN END AND MY MOTHER AND I WORRY ABOUT HOW TO PAY THE NEXT MONTH RENT AND ALL OF THE OTHER EXPENSES THAT KEEP THE APARTMENT GOING. CAUSE DOWN HERE IF YOU DON'T HAVE THE RENT YOUR GONE AND YOUR STUFF IS ON THE STREET. AND QUICKLY THE HOUNDS GRAB IT AND RUN WITH IT.
MY MOTHER GOT A SECOND JOB AT SAL DINER WASHING DIRTY DISHES AND TABLES AND SOMETIMES COOKING COMING HOME SMELLING OF GREASE AND FEELING LIKE SHE COULD DIE ON THE COUCH. BUT FOR ME I’M STILL MAKING SANDWICHES AT THE CORNER DELI AFTER SCHOOL AT LEASE I GOT TO EAT FOR HALF OFF AND DELEIVERY NEWSPAPER BEFORE GOING TO SCHOOL. BUT IT STILL DIDN'T PAY MUCH BUT IT WAS SOMETHING TO HELP MY MOTHER WITH THE BILLS TO KEEP THINGS FROM GETTING TURN OFF.
WE NEVER HAD MUCH HEAT AND SOMETIMES NO HEAT FOR MONTHS. THE LAND LORD NEVER GAVE A DAMN HE DIDN'T LIVE HERE HE ONLY CAME BY FOR THE RENT. AND WHEN HE CAME BY HE WOULD WALK OVER THE RATS AND THE BUGS CRAWLING ON THE WALLS. AND BABY CRYING WHILE HUSBAND AND WIVES FIGHT SCREAMING DOWN THE HALLWAYS. HE DIDN'T CARE AS LONG AS HE STILL GOT HIS RENT MONEY AND QUICKLY HE WOULD LEAVE IN HIS CADILLAC GOING ABOUT 100 MILES PER HOUR TO GET THE HELL OUT OF THIS PART OF THE CITY.
THE END OF THE MONTH WAS REALLY HARD AND SAD BECAUSE MY MOTHER WAS GETTING SICKER AND SICKER TRYING TO KEEP UP WITH TWO JOBS DAY’S AND NIGHT’S. BUT STILL MY MOTHER MADE IT THRU ANOTHER MONTH WITH THE RENT MONEY TILL MY MOTHER GOT SO SICK SHE DIES IN BED.
I STARTED TO CHASE MY DREAM AFTER SHE PASSES AWAY
AND TRY TO MAKE MY MUSIC HAPPEN. I WAS ALWAYS GOOD AT WRITING AND SINGING MY OWN SONGS A GIFT MY FATHER GAVE ME. SO ONE DAY WALKING HOME AFTER WORK I SAW THIS GUITAR AT THE SECOND HAND STORE AND I BOUGHT IT. IT TOOK MOST OF MY PAY CHECK BUT I PRACTICE EVERY DAY TILL MY FINGERS WOULD BLEED AND MY STRINGS WOULD BREAK.
FINDALLY I MASTER IT AND PUT MUSIC TO MY SONGS AND WENT TO MAKE A TAPE AND SEND IT OFF TO RADIO’S STATIONS.
HOPING SOME ONE WOULD PLAY IT. TILL ONE DAY A BUDDY TOLD ME TO SEND IT TO ONE RADIO STATION HE KNEW AND THAT WAS TO WNEW 102.7 FM WHO PLAYS NEW MUSIC ON SUNDAY MORINGS FROM 7 TO 10 AM. BUT NOBODY EVEN PLAYS IT OR SENDS ME A LETTER.

ONE DAY I SAW THIS ADD IN THE VILLAGE VOICE ABOUT THIS GIG AT THE OLD BAR IN THE VILLAGE ON HOUSTON STREETSANG A COUPLE OF SONGS AND MINE SONGS WITH THE OWNER HOUSE BAND AND GOT THE JOB. I SANG EVERY FRIDAY AND SATURDAY NIGHT’S I WOULD PLAYED FOR ABOUT TWO HOURS. THAT WENT ON FOR ABOUT A COUPLE OF MONTHS IT HELPS AS A SECOND JOB. BUT STILL IT DIDN'T PAY MUCH BUT IT DIDN’T PAY BAD EITHER. IT WAS A BIG HELP WITH PAYING THE RENT NOW THAT I LIVE ALONE IN THE APARTMENT
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A MAN IN A SUIT WITH A BRIEF CASE IN HAND CAME TO SEE ME PLAY ONE NIGHT AND SAT DOWN AND LISTEN TO ME SING AND PLAY MY GUITAR WITH THE HOUSE BAND. THAN ASK TO SEE ME DURING MY BREAK AND STARTED TO TALK ABOUT SIGNING ME TO A CONTRACT WITH HIS RECORD COMPANY. MY FACE ALMOST DROP AND MY PALM STARTED TO SWEAT WHEN I PICK UP HIS PEN TO SIGN ACROSS THE DOTTED LINE AND TALKING LIKE A HAD A FROG IN MY THROAT. TILL I FINDALLY CALM DOWN AND CLEAR MY THROAT I SAID THANK YOU. AND IN A YEAR I'M ON MY SECOND ALBUM TRYING TO TOP THE LAST ONE AND MAKE THIS ONE EVEN BETTER.

ONE NIGHT I TOOK A BREAK FROM TOURING WHILES MY WIFE AND KID WAS SLEEPING. I LOOK AT SOME OLD PHOTOSGRAPH I HAD IN MY GUITAR CASE THE PICTURES WERE ABOUT WHEN I WAS YOUNGER WITH MY MOTHER AND FATHER AND HOW I RECALL HOW HARD IT WAS FOR THEM AND ME TO SURIVE. AND MY DADDY WHO NEVER GOT A CHANCE TO GROW OLD OR SEE ME PERFORM AND NEITHER DID MY MOTHER GOD REST THERE SOUL’S. HOPEFULLY THEY SEE ME NOW FROM UP THERE AND GIVING ME THERE BLESSING.

MY SON ON MY LAP LOOKING AT THE PICTURES OF MY LIFE AND MY OLD APARTMENT BUILDING IN BROOKLYN WHERE I GREW UP WHEN I WAS HIS AGE AND TELLING HIM ABOUT HIS GRAND PARENTS SO HE NEVER FORGET THEM. SO WHEN HE ON HIS OWN AND FINDING THINGS HARD HE CAN LOOK BACK WHERE HIS FAMILY CAME FROM AND THAT SHOULD HELP SOME WHAT WITH HIS DREAMS.

I WENT BACK TO MY WRITING AND WROTE A SONG ABOUT MY FAMILY AND HOW I MADE IT TO THIS POINT OF MY LIFE. THE SONG WAS CALL A BOY’S LIFE LIVING IN BROOKLYN. MY MANAGER DIDN'T THINK IT WAS A GOOD IDEAL BECAUSE HE THINK’’S HE OWNS MY SONGS BUT LITTLE DOES HE KNOW HE DON’T EITHER WAY I DIDN'T CARE IT WAS MY SONG MY WAY AND I DIDN'T NEED HIS PERMISSION TO DO IT. LATER THAT NIGHT I WAS TO BE ON THE LATE SHOW TO SING FOR THE CROWD AND THE PEOPLE AT HOME. THEY WANTING TO HEAR MY HIT SONG BUT I CHANGE IT TO MY NEW ONE CALL A BOY LIFE LIVING IN BROOKLYN. AND SANG IT FOR THE CROWD WHETHER THEY LIKE IT OR NOT I WAS GONNA SINGS IT ANYWAY. BUT TO MY SURPIZE THEY LOVE IT AND SO I ADDED TO MY NEW CD..
THE NEXT DAY I WENT OUT RIDING WITH MY KID BACK TO THE OLD APARTMENT BUILDING IN BROOKLYN LITTLE DID I KNOW IT BURN DOWN YESTERDAY. SAID THE OLD DRUNK WHEN I ASK HIM WHAT HAPPEN HE SAID IT LIT UP LIKE THE FOURTH OF JULY YOU COULD SEE IT FOR MILES. THE FIRE MARSHALL FOUND PAINT CANS AND A LIGHTER THAT STARTED THE FIRE MAN. AND WE HAVEDN'T SEEN THE LANDLORD SINCE THE FIRE, THE COPS THINK THE LANDLORD DID IT FOR THE INSURANCE MONEY OR HIRE SOMEONE TO DO IT. BUT HE WASN'T A PRO A PRO WOULDN'T LEAVE THE EVIDENCE AROUND SAID THE COP TO HIS PARTNER.
THE PEOPLE ARE STILL HOMELESS ON THE STREET WAITING FOR THE RED CROSS HELP WHICH CAME AND PUTTING SOME PEOPLE AT LOCAL SCHOOLS OVER THE WEEKEND AND PUTTING SOME PEOPLE AT THE OLD WHITE MEDTHODIST CHURCH. SAID THE OLD HOMELESS DRUNK WHO GOES BACK TO HIS CARDBOARD BOX ON THE SIDE OF THE BUILDING WHERE THE SUPER KEPT THE GARBAGE CANS AND CALLS IT A DAY. I GAVE THE HOMELESS MAN A FEW DOLLARS BEFORE LEAVING SAYING GOODBYE HE SAID BACK THANKS MAN AND MY SON AND I LEFT.
I LOOK BACK AT MY SON WHEN WE GOT IN THE CAR SAYING
THERE GOES THE OLD PLACE WHICH I LIVE IN AND OFF WE WENT STILL TALKING ABOUT IT AS WE DROVE AWAY.

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