More Quarantine

Bob, you are not the only one taking this shit seriously.  We’ve been on lockdown since March 10.  My wife is type 1 diabetic and hasn’t even been to the grocery store since February.

We haven’t visited with family or friends, however we have friends that regularly get together with their friends and family because they think they’re all “being careful”.  And they’re getting together inside without masks!!


How can educated, seemingly informed people be so freakin dumb?!  It seems like everyone has a different take on the virus that only serves their affirmation bias.

We watch in disgust and disbelief at friends and family who are so reckless and selfish, while so many people are sick and dying.

Quarantining is not just to protect us, it’s to protect others. C’mon, how hard is it to abide by basic acts of human decency?!

And don’t get me started with our neighbor who’s been telling me for months that his doctor says ‘the virus needs to run through the entire population for us to have immunity’.  HIS doctor told him, so it must be true.  I call bullshit, but can I say this to his face?  Oh no.  I must be crazy to disagree!

Take care and stay safe!

Adam Lerner


My wife and I are still on lockdown.   Yesterday a friend of ours went into the hospital with covid.  He’s 61.  No ambulance would take him, and in desperation he managed to drive himself.     The hospital has taken him so we are hopeful.   I was near the guy 12 days ago (8 feet, outdoors) but still see it as a close call.   We all have to be vigilant.

Michael Alex


Hey Bob, it’s just a shame what has happened to our country. Under the mismanagement of the trump incompetence administration.  The situation we find ourselves in today was avoidable and I can’t understand the levels of ignorance and just stupidity that have allowed this to explode. My whole family has been extra careful from the start of the pandemic yet this week we have came down with Covid 19. Whether it was the last trip to the store? or that Starbuck run? Having two teenagers who’ve been great over all pretty good about giving up so much for so long..  Or maybe It was something else?? Somehow it crept in and now we’ll see what’s next. I be lying if I said I wasn’t scared a bit. but now the worry is about not spreading it more.. that’s becomes even more bothering and So we have been locked down and not left the house at all. And will follow the CDC rules. No ones needs hospital attention and I pray we don’t.  but as I’m the one with the health issues so we shall see how this plays out? Right now just sick as a dog. With all the systems.  But I just wanted to share as we did everything to prevent this from happening yet here we are. but this is not a perfect world.. Sometimes your best just isn’t good enough.  Praying for better days ahead for us all.

Frank Higginbotham


I got Covid (thx to wife, essential health-personel, they get infected too) at the end of November, took me until yesterday (jan 5) to get better. I had it “mild”, no fever, but aches and pains, hard to breathe, no taste and smell – and jet-lag like tiredness and brain-fatigue – it’s a weird and insidious virus; no joke. Take care, stay safe!

/ Chris Bell – in Sweden


I’m not trying to freak you out but the long haulers have a lot more to worry about than just losing their taste and smell. My 22-year-old nephew, a big strapping lad who works construction as a heating and air conditioning installer and had no known pre-conditions got COVID 19 in mid-August and is still not back to work. He has gastrointestinal issues, chronic fatigue and some minor breathing issues. He is nowhere near ready to return to work and may have to be retrained to hold any kind of job at all. Worse is that the doctors just don’t know. He has improved some in the fatigue area and can stay up a few hours longer than he could a month or two ago. As for the rest, there is little change.


Ruth O’Doherty


At the time of lockdown last March, I was a 20 years into a career as a touring musician, FOH/MON engineer, TM and PM (I’ve worked directly with several of the people you’ve talked about in your newsletter and interviewed on your podcast). 2020 was going to be a busy year after taking it easier in 2019 for the birth of my second son. 9+ months of confirmed work vanished overnight, and rather than traveling around the world, doing my small part to help bring joy to people, not to mention being the primary financial support to my family, I’ve become a stay-at-home dad and housekeeper.

Despite being quite ill-prepared for this, my wife and I podded up with another family within our same risk tolerance and got a pre-school curriculum to try and keep our kids social and learning while the rest of the world stopped. As of this week, we’ve had to put a stop to that because, while only one of the four parents goes into a work place, cases there have spiked and we’re not willing to put our family at risk.

We’re lucky in that we, at least for the time being, have food, shelter, and somewhat financial security. So many people I know in the industry don’t. I find myself getting frustrated at family members, acquaintances, and people who live in my town (5mi outside of Boston) who seem to not fully grasp the situation. Many times I’ve had to type the phrase “I don’t work until you stop being so selfish.”

Politics and religion aside, we’ve all got to figure out a way live together. It boggles my mind how obstinate people can be in the face of even the smallest challenge to their belief system. I’ve lived my life with the simple tenet “what if I’m wrong?” That forces my actions to not intentionally cause anyone else harm based on my beliefs.

Sometimes with my COVID quarantine I fear I’ll be like those last soldiers in Vietnam, wandering through the jungle, no knowing that the war was over, but seeing the numbers every day, I know we’ve still got a long way to go.

Stay strong, stay safe, and stay healthy.

Josh Cohen


Hello Bob, happy new year (I hope!). I work at WME so I have been working from home since last March basically taking 2020 tour routing and moving it to 2021 and praying some of it can play. The rate at which we have dealt with this crisis and particularly the disorganization over the vaccine rollout is very disappointing. As of today, the number of doses is not the issue, it’s lack of a distribution plan for getting needles in arms. All of our futures and ability to get back to work depend on this and it sickens me to see politicians fight over elections rather than digging in on a local or national level to get us out of this mess…but don’t get me started on that topic because it’s a rabbit hole.

My wife works at Vanderbilt Hospital in Nashville and she is one of the people that sits you in that chair and administers those concoctions like Rituxin and chemo.  She got her vaccine last week and has the second follow up shot scheduled for 3 weeks later, right down to the same hour that the first shot went in her arm. Yesterday she came home from work telling a story about how people in the next phase of the vaccine rollout are getting the vaccine sooner because supply is exceeded demand in phase one. The next phase here in TN is called phase 1a then 1b and thats for older people and those with some condition that make them more vulnerable. Turns out that each county in our state has an allotment of vaccine doses coming in at random intervals. In the outlying counties where the populations are smaller, they have a lot of leftover doses that were supposed to go to those healthcare workers, first responders, etc.  So they are opening up these doses to anyone in the next phase that is interested. I have an 84 year old mother that falls into this category so I checked into it. Turns out it’s a signup genius form on the county health department website….yes you heard that right, a signup genius with 200 slots per day. All counties surrounding metropolitan cities are full on the signup forms well into February but if you look one more county out there are lots of slots available. This process is akin to a high stakes scavenger hunt that only spreads by word-of-mouth. My mom has a tv and a flip phone she uses for emergencies only. She doesn’t use a computer and she certainly isn’t in the path of news spreading through socials so how would she have known. She will be fine because she is now learning the game, but what about all those people that don’t get this news. What about those that don’t have a family member to help them out. At this rate we will still be giving vaccines in the summer and that is unacceptable. This vaccine distribution system is absurd. I keep thinking they will convert our covid testing sites to vaccine sites but that would make too much sense I guess. My hope is that we see more organization, clearer direction, and greater acceptance as more doses come online. Wouldn’t it be great if we could load up out idle tour busses with vaccine doses, send them out into the field, set up the Merch booth and knock this out at warp speed. In the meantime, like you, I will stay in my house and dream about what my next live concert will look like. At this point I don’t care who it is, it could be some guy playing Aqualung on flute for all I care…I will get chill bumps just being out and seeing live music again. I really look forward to seeing everyone’s reviews of “their first show back”.

Until then, keep researching where the doses are, share that news with someone that qualifies for that phase that might not get the news otherwise, then take the next step to help them figure out how to get a ride to get the vaccine…and above all, stay well in the meantime.

Lane Wilson | WME


Bob….you are a smart person for staying in.  I pretty much won’t go anywhere I don’t have to, and even then have had groceries delivered a few times.  even now when my wife and I go for walks, we wear masks despite the fact that people are also courteous about wearing masks and giving other walkers 6 feet separation.  But I live in liberal Madison.  Members of my family (we don’t live near them) have no fear about airports and traveling and don’t believe in wearing masks, and it makes me crazy.  we have zoom dinners and gatherings now, and that works for me….why can’t it for everyone else to speed up the elimination of this virus?

Mike Farley


Couldn’t agree with you more on this. As a fan of data, the following is, to me, most telling:


I live in Nova Scotia and with a few notable exceptions both the government and the population in general have been very diligent about dealing with the virus. We may be more restricted for a period of time, but I prefer having my personal liberty restricted to the lives of others ended. My conscience is at ease knowing that we have kept the populace in general safe.


What a fucked up world we live in when being able to do what I want, pardon the pun, Trumps the safety of the population in general. History will frown upon the handling of the pandemic in many jurisdictions.


Keep up the good work!!


Steve Schumph


Been in lockdown since March 8th and sold my home in East Hampton, NY (Suffolk County becoming the epicenter throughout the Summer 2020 when our formally 2nd home and resort community became full-time residences for thousands of New Yorkers.  Stella and I moved to Fulton County, NY –  in the Adirondack Park —  I, being ineligible for the vaccine or any vaccine — due to having contracted Guillain-Barré syndrome and the attending months of infusions to cure that paralysis in 2017.

I’ll be out of physical touch with family and friends until that 70-80% of the world is vaccinated; working remotely,  building a new music-playback studio, and watching those golden vacuum tubes glow.

Alex Miller


The world map in the daily NY Times tells the story. American exceptionalism in this case is that best practices apply except in a lot of the US. At some point the common good has to become the focus over personal liberty.

Stephen Knill


Saw one of Dr. Seuss’s very first cartoons showing an America First character with a beard entwined with a nazi character that made me think of the current state of America. When Trump barked “America first!” Numerous times at his inauguration I feared for this nation and now look at us. We are the laughingstock and pitied by anyone with any knowledge. The R’s anti science crowd ‘s rhetoric has come home to roost but all Trump cares about is overturning the election. Guess we got what we deserved.

Hal Kempson


Keep pissin’ in the wind, you might think no one is listening but we know your aim is true!   Here in Ireland, our gov appointed medical experts urged self same gov in November to go back to full lockdown, nothing but essential services.   Gov, afraid of taking an unpopular decision, said nah, we need shops etc to be open, we want to give people ‘as normal a Christmas as possible.’    Leaders, eh?   Result?    Massive surge at the end of Dec., hospitals/ICUs full to the max and about to be overwhelmed and, guess what, country now on full lockdown.   Stable/horse/bolting/etc.    As for vaccines, they are arriving in minimal numbers and even then innoculations have been delayed because of insufficient staff numbers/training.   It feels like whatever is possible to get wrong, they are getting wrong.

Our alt-right/anti-vax people are, relative to the US, very limited in numbers;  instead, we depend on our government to fck things up.   Cali sounds like a nightmare, Bob, and over on this side we are not exactly livin’ the dream.   Good spirit and good health to you and Felice.

Fachtna O


Regarding this virus: I just wish the folks who feel that it is an overblown deal would realize that distancing, lockdown, etc isn’t necessarily about NOT getting sick but is about metering it so that the hospitals don’t get overloaded. If you overload the facilities, drain the resources and burn out the staff, other serious emergency medical issues may not be attended to in good time. That heart attack or stroke that normally would have been attend to in good time now turns into a fatality.

It’s a big-picture thing that a lot of entitled folks aren’t getting.



I am a blind individual living in Louisiana and I get out to go to the corner grocery store to pick up food.  No, I do not have an iPhone SE20, but hope to obtain one this year and have a blind tech friend help me learn it.  It has a steep learning curve for blind users or so I am told.


I’m sorry about your infusions, and to have to do that bi-yearly must be trying esp. now!


Amerika, Inc. just really feels broken.  I have rather good friends with whom I must bite my tongue w hen they say, Covid is not so bad, mostly people get it who have other conditions or they say, minorities don’t have a good work ethic or don’t eat right.  They are very pro-life, but seem more pro-fetus.  Wars kill people too, and such stupid wars.  The infrastructure we could have had.


Too bad the news broadcasts have to turn a slick profit now.  News should be about information, not money.  The late Sumner Redstone owns or owned CBS, for instance, and I forget who owns ABC, it used to be Capital-Cities-ABC, than Disney bought something, or was it Time-Warner-AOL.  When does this dinosaur-eating-dinosaur hunger end?  Perhaps, we need a figurative asteroid to bring people to their senses?  Remember, about 60 million years ago, a popular theory suggests an asteroid hit near Mexico, and bye bye T rex and things even bigger.



Stay well



“If you get sick nobody cares about you…”

Sadly, you are so correct.

I’ve had an open wound on my leg for 6 months. I’ve seen my PCP 4 times, an EZ Care Doctor once, and spent 2 1/2 days in the hospital, and I had to do my own research and then beg my PCP for a referral to a wound specialist.

Of course I now have a new PCP. But, I’ve learned thru this experience that it’s hard to find anyone that actually gives a fuck. I don’t think it has helped that I’m a Black man. And a musician.

I can literally see the apathy for my health in the MD’s eyes.

My new PCP is Black. I have a feeling I’m gonna get more compassionate care.

Welcome to America in 2021…

Glad you are getting good care. I’m sure it helps being in LA too…with great doctors.

Best regards my friend in music,

Marc Fort


Kia ora from New Zealand Bob – I don’t read every one of your emails, but I read this. We (well most of us I think) from here have watched in amazement and horror at the way the ‘developed’ world has dealt with this virus. No doubt that there’s a balance between personal liberty and community safety, not to mention economic activity and general mental wellbeing, it’s a tough one to call and not every jurisdiction / state / country will or should make the same call. But some things are universal – caution, kindliness, government support for those who need it, communication and trust. We’re relatively lucky here (25 deaths, no lockdowns for months now) but we know it could change in a heartbeat. Australia has had issues and now these new variants…our border brings in a few hundred people every week and a couple of dozen cases. The government is just starting the procurement process for vaccine storage and distribution. We’re not at the front of the queue for vaccines, and nor should we be. We all hope that by the time our supplies of vaccine arrive, there’s a clear plan for roll out, with the right groups prioritised and hard-to-reach people and locations acknowledged. It all costs a fortune and we’re not a rich country – but we have a lot going for us, specially now in summertime, at the beach and the cafes, enjoying our holidays.

Good luck to us all.

And to you.

all the best

Deb O’Kane


Hey Bob, over here in Australia the response to Covid couldn’t be more polar opposite to the nightmare that’s happening in the US. Today, Jan 6, we have added only 13 cases to arrive at a country-wide active case count of 293. While i’m sure there are others that are unknown or not in this number, the science of tracking and tracing the virus is in full effect down under.

In July, the city of Melbourne experienced a dramatic rise in cases and went into a lockdown that lasted 112 days. Melbournians couldn’t leave their house but to buy food and essentials, go to work if their job is considered essential or for a short exercise. No household gatherings were allowed. If you were outdoors without a mask you got a $200 fine. If you were out past curfew without a good reason, the fine was over $1000. In those 112 days the city of Melbourne took what could have been a public health disaster and turned it completely around. Today in the state of Victoria where Melbourne is located there are 0 people in the hospital due to Covid 19.

You were down in Australia around this same time last year. If you were to make that trip today, you would be escorted from the international airport to a bus that will take you to a guarded hotel and spend 14 days in quarantine before leaving your hotel room and walking into a populated area. Some dickhead recently tried to evade the cops at the airport and was fines $19,000.

They’re not fucking around here.

Which may be why, after nearly a year since Covid broke into the news, Australia has a total of 909 confirmed deaths from the virus. Our highest daily death toll at the peak of the Melbourne lockdowns was less than 60.

Now it’s Sydney’s turn; just before Christmas there was an outbreak in the Northern Beaches. Several neighbourhoods were locked down and over Christmas and New Years Eve, those people were told to stay home and not go outside. And with few exceptions, that’s just what they did and the outbreak seems to be back under control, with numbers steadily decreasing. Everyone is wearing their mask and adjusting their routine to reduce their exposure. Pretty much everyone is just doing the right thing.

We have a 2 party political polarisation in Australia similar to the USA. 2 major political parties who most of the time, agree on very little. But what we have done differently here is to have a semi-competent leader listening to science and getting all Australians onboard with what needs to be done to protect the citizens. A few people got hefty fines and were made an example of. And there were also a few empty-headed protesters who made anti-science signage and attempted to march in groups. We have wackos too. But the major difference is we didn’t have a wacko in charge who validated all the other wackos.

Hope to see you down here again someday. – Nate

Nate Goyer


I can relate to your infusion story. I spent an hour every 6 hours every day for 3 months in the chair getting IV antibiotics to kill an infection that was doing its damnest to kill me. It’s boring.

And because of that I’ve been in lockdown since the beginning of 2020. I’m now very infection prone and I’m scared to death-literally-of getting COVID. I go to the store on Sunday morning when it’s deserted and walk around my neighborhood for 20 minutes a day and that’s it.  I hate it but I hate being sick more. And I can’t understand people who don’t take it seriously. It’s serious, people!

Phil Brown


My husband literally hasn’t left the house since March, I’ve gone to the infusion center every 8 weeks for my meds. My 93 year old mother in law lives with us so it’s been no one in or out, no help, not even my in-laws. It’s quite simply not worth the risk to any of us.

Stay safe and well. We’re with you.

Alexia Erlichman

P.S. This country feels completely f’d, it’s a sad state of affairs.


In the middle of nowhere in Colorado pretty much by myself for 8 months. Went on a Moe tour last February SF , Portland , Seattle . Realized how lucky I was . Shut myself in.  Two worlds it’s -very strange. People call me all the time and say we are flying in can we stay with you? No. Hang in there.

Peter O’Fallon


Your words have impact. I thought I was the last person still on lockdown, so I feel a tiny bit better knowing I’m not the only one. Thanks.

Kelly Guimont


i was in Victoria for a year,virtually all citizens supported with  their Premiers (governors) rules once virus got up to 700 a day, 8000 active. worlds longest lockdown, mask mandatory, go out for 1 hour a day, cant go more then 5 km from your house, 8 pm curfew. it worked they eradicated the virus for 2 months, some cases now from travellers returning. movies resto open, big tennis tournaments soon, F1 in march.  The rules work, i dont understand how US citizens are so stupid and cant see that. All you have to do is look at Aus, NZ, Taiwan, Singapore.

Brian Barry


I could not agree with you more. As a Tour Manager for many great Canadian Acts, I hope everyone will be vaccinated ASAP so we can work on further solutions to get out shows back! The ongoing conversation since our first mandatory lockdown (we are in our second full mandatory lockdown here in Southern Ontario) is “when do you think we will get back to work?”  Answer. Wear a mask. Get vaccinated. Do your part  Its already in our backyard. If we all do this together as one, we will come out stronger and get this over with sooner (look at Australia and New Zealand). Very tired of the maskless and law bending folks out there slowing down the process of getting back to “normal life”. Our road crews are hit heavily by this pandemic. Some worse than others.  We look forward every day to getting back on the road and do what we love to do best. And we’ll all gladly do it with a mask on!

Oh and What you say has a huge impact on us and we all love you for it.

Continue to take care. Be safe.

Joe Cacioppo


100% still under quarantine, not even a question to break it. COVID has the potential to hurt too many people near me, and would feel absolutely horrible to spread it to them. I am afraid – big time of the long term effects it can have on someone.. As a healthy 26 year old, I want to keep it that way.

Sam Tany


If we armed ourselves with paint bomb guns and used them we could quickly identify the fools refusing to even wear a mask.  The war on ignorant people starts now.

Steve Brown


I live in Mississippi. I’m 12 miles from a college town and 2 miles from a town of 2500. In that little  town, most customers come in for take out. No mask. The grocery store 50% no mask. The kiosk, server, no mask. Two restaurants I use to dine in, not safe.

95% of the state is under so called mask mandates. No enforcement. I can’t listen to the governor’s briefings because he praises the citizens for their efforts and sacrifice. The state health officer bites his tongue.

They say they will start next week with older than 70 vaccinations. The week after, 65 and above. How can they do that when as of yesterday, only 20,000 had been vaccinated statewide?  Hospitals are on crisis standards of care.

Oh, we have casinos. There, the smokers and drinkers keep their face coverings around their neck 90% of the time. Most bar, restaurant and social gathering rules don’t apply

Today, record number of deaths reported. The last couple of weeks have set  records for positives.

John Kauchick


Doing only the minimal over here. Going once a week to Whole Foods at 8:30 am. Going to NH but stopping rarely to Trader Joe’s in Portsmouth and then to our house. No restaurants. No stores. Back and forth. Not even stopping to pee if necessary. Afraid to go cross-country skiing in Jackson but may go during the week to see how to goes. Will buy skis this year to avoid rental. Taking it seriously because we won’t get the vaccine until April or May.

Meanwhile one of my closest friends joined the Daniel Eick group and an incredibly gifted, interesting, intelligent person now exists on the lunatic fringe telling me that my DNA will be changed if i take the vaccine. How the hell did that happen? Can you write about that? How intelligent normal people have fallen off the face of the earth believing we are ruled by reptilians.  This should not be.

What is happening to mental health during this is era is as bad as the disease that is killing us.

“The world has gone mad” (in French) is what my husband says every morning when he looks at his phone. News from France and the U.K. where friends and family are -not much better.

Only sanity we saw this year was in southern Senegal where our friend who lives in Dakar was spending a week. No masks. No death really. Looked normal from the hour we spent with him on What’s App. He said it was because they understood public health and that the population is young. I wonder if they’re next.

Patti Jones


This is a no brainer for me. I don’t need anyone’s permission, endorsement or blessing to decide not to hike across a fucking mine field. I don’t play Russian Roulette. Fuck that. If “they” wanna play that game, be my guest. Not me.

Graves and urns are filled with the compost of those who thought they could beat, or cheat, the odds. And if they want to call me a scared lib-tard snowflake pussy sheep, no prob, fuck ’em. I don’t give a fuck.

If I’m wrong, I live. If they’re wrong, they might die. Or kill.

Clapton? Morrison? Have a chat with Prine, or Toots, or Pride, or Diffie. Yes, gents, you’re free…to join them.

Yeah, this sucks. It’s a dull, boring, frustrating, fidgety, groundhog day blursday eye-rolling drag. Big fucking deal.

You don’t change an equation (or epidemiology, physics or history) by ignoring it.

I isolated in March, locked down completely from April to July, never left the house except to take out the trash. Mid July I started going to Costco and Ralphs. September, some outdoor dining. October even dated a little. Human contact, hallelujah! November, scaled it way back, had Thanksgiving and Christmas in my little pod with my ex wife and our son, and now, back on total lockdown. No hay problema, cabrones.

News says even going out at all is “high risk in LA”. That one in five will get it. That’s all I need.

So Trader Joe’s, Ralphs, Costco, CVS, Target, even meal pickup, all out. My local Costco employees got Covid, was in the news, and I was there three times over the holidays. So that’s it. Done. Instacart, baby.

I have TVs and computers and streaming services and way too much homework anyway from years of being on the road half the time, plus organizations I serve with Zooms practically every day, and actual work to do from home. Plenty to keep me busy. I’ve done 31 episodes of ADR on a TV series, half a dozen commercial VOs, still have a royalty stream, and live streamed 200+ shows since March and am still on 3 days a week for an audience I have come to know personally, all in the same boat, all looking to each other for strength and encouragement and engagement.

What the fuck do I have to complain about? Not a goddamned thing. Imma pay attention, take the note, shut it down and make lemonade every day. I’ll buy you one at the finish line.

Dan Navarro

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