Positive Feedback Logo

Behind the Booths & Back Vol.2 - T.H.E. Show Newport 2016

06-15-2016 | By Michael Mercer | Issue 85

"There's always somethin'..."

Howard Mercer

I don't mean to bite off my friend and co-PF scribe Andy Schaubs' style by leading with a quote for this installment of Behind the Booths & Back, but given the fact that the quote came from my pops, it seemed fitting. His words danced around in my brain throughout T.H.E. Show Newport here in sunny California last weekend. It was a scorcher this year, from the weather to the energy surrounding my daily activities. Unfortunately, that felt all-too familiar at certain times—given that I and my now ex-wife decided to end the marriage merely days before the event last year. That relationship lasted just over twenty years, only slightly shorter than half my life. It's surreal to type that, and I assure you: Had it not been for T.H.E. Headphonium (the headphone show at Newport that I co-Founded in 2013 with Richard Beers, and ran with my dear friend Warren Chi) I would not have attended T.H.E. Show Newport for an hour, let alone the entire convention last Summer. Frankly, I was no shape to be out in public—but the personal audio show was our event, and so my work duties beckoned. This year came with its own set of personal challenges, mixed among my new work commitments—and so at the end of the surreal journey I thought to myself (and even said to a few friends) "this is going to be one helluva' Behind the Booths & Back article"! However, after some serious contemplation I decided to leave much of the story to the parties that were present at the time of all the melodrama. Our industry has enough obstacles to face down, why pepper that with my own? Well, my utmost apologies in-advance: While I'm going to omit some of the details, I don't know another way to be truthful to myself and to my readers than to share much of the story. I swore many years ago that I'd always bring my whole heart to every word I write for them, and I'll be damned if I'm going to stop now. I feel obligated to state at the outset however, that this column does not make any attempts to offer absolutes, nor to indite any particular person, brand, or consumer electronics entity. I'm merely trying to recount the goings-on during this years T.H.E. Show Newport through my own personal lens. Believe me: I'm glad I took notes! It felt more like a great indie drama film than real-life, then again, I said something very similar to my divorce attorney. I said "Harry, believe me by the end of this you're going to see my life is better fit for a movie than real-life". Needless to say by now he agrees. But, regardless of any issues, personal or professional, I sincerely had a grand time at Newport this time around. I owe that to my dear friends in this mad industry, built around a community who've literally watched me grow-up over the last 20+ years. I bet it's a trip for some of them too. So lets dig deep into it then.

Two Hi-fi elders I love & respect: Jonathan Valin of The Absolute Sound & Ray Kimber of Kimber Kable

Two Hi-fi elders I love & respect: Jonathan Valin of The Absolute Sound & Ray Kimber of Kimber Kable.

Firstly, for the readers that didn't already know: Shortly after CanJam SoCal a couple months ago (during which I was helping team Cavalli Audio with their social media and branding) I was offered a position at Questyle North America Inc. The job was Director of Brand Support: Summarily becoming Mr. Bruce Balls' right-hand man here on the West Coast. I was proud to accept the job, as Bruce (a.k.a "B" to me) and I have been connected through a common thread for as long as my whole hi-fi career! That common denominator: Our dearly departed friend, my beloved mentor, and pioneer of high-end audio: Mr. Harry Pearson (Founder of The Absolute Sound magazine and the man who coined the term "high-end audio"). Bruce met Harry back in his thirties when he was running Benz Micro, a fantastic phono cartridge company. I came to TAS a few years later. Bruce has also worked in tour merchandising, and managed a few bands over the years before and after my tenure at Atlantic Records following my time with Harry and TAS—so our paths have been crossing in audio and in music ever since. I'm also a big fan of the Questyle personal audio products! So it seemed like the perfect fit, and we were off to a raging start! Unfortunately the working relationship ended during the final day of Newport. That doesn't change my feelings about Questyle however, and it certainly doesn't change a damn thing about how I feel about Bruce (Ball, President of Questyle North America Inc.). In the end, I believe with my whole heart that everything turned out for the best—though it doesn't really feel that way right now. In the midst of this madness however, I also had a blast! Despite my work paths' unexpected detour, this year turned out to be, believe it or not: One of my favorite Newport shows! Does that make me crazy? I'll let you be the judge of that...

For me, the scariest part of T.H.E. Show Newport this year, far beyond any now-seemingly superficial thoughts of demonstrations disappointing attendees, or, God forbid, forgetting a cable, footer or two: I ended up in the Emergency Room at Hoag Hospital in Irvine during set-up day. Now, I wasn't there for me. My friend and boss at the time, Bruce, had been showing signs of what I thought was a freakin' heart attack before we even took off from the house that morning! It's so difficult to summarize these types of life events, without sounding like I'm choosing a side, or, a position rather, but my intent here is to paint a picture of what the show experience was like for me! There's no wrong, and no right. I'm trying to offer a looking glass into those four days, what it was like, how I felt, and what I saw and heard. So, as you can imagine from the first sentence in this paragraph, my Newport experienced was insanely heightened before it even began! Nonetheless—here's what lead up to the visit to the ER at Hoag Hospital:

Bruce works his ass off. He's probably one of the hardest working people I know. One of the problems with that is the man sleeps less than me! That's sayin' something. He didn't sleep at all the night before set-up day because he chose to pack our rental van instead. Me? I spent the day before set-up day winding down with a good friend. I needed to get some down-time in order to be alert and fresh for the four-day audio convention. After all, Bruce and I exhibited together at at least three concurrent weekend events before Newport! As a matter of fact, I was laughing with Peter from MrSpeakers the weekend before T.H.E. Show, during the MrSpeakers ETHER vs. ETHER-C Shoot-Out at The Source A/V (for their Summer Series Sponsored by Cavalli Audio). The reason we were laughing? Peter and I were just in Georgia the weekend before that for Canlanta!


We couldn't believe it. There we were, at another event pancaked between Canlanta and Newport! We were both wondering how we were gonna get through it. I knew I needed rest. Bruce and I probably should've made a tighter game-plan for show preparations. Luckily, however, since we had all those previous events: We kept all the gear in boxes, ready-to-go. I mistakenly thought we'd pack up the van on the morning of set-up day and take off. But by the time I got to the house, Bruce was there waiting for me. The van was packed (thanks to our friend Hector) and all I had to do was gather my personal stuff and take-off behind him in my Mini. That was not to be. Without going into detail: Bruce was in no condition to drive, so I stuffed my things into the rental van, and we took off to see his doctor in Glendale on the way to T.H.E. Show. I'm not sure what happened inside once we got there, but I decided to reach out to Gary Barker (writes for Headphone Guru—and worked with Bruce at Questyle before me, as well as two other companies before that: The two of them are like brothers) in order to find out how best to support Bruce. I wasn't willing to risk his health for an audio convention. Thankfully, and this shows what type of guy Gary is: He drove to the doctors office in Glendale to speak with Bruce. They decided to follow behind me in Gary's car as the van wasn't comfortable enough for Bruce in his weakened state. I must admit I was torn the whole time.

If I wasn't working for Bruce, to be brutally honest, I wouldn't have given him a choice in the matter. I would've taken him to the ER right away, or called 911. I can't tell you why, but until we arrived at Hotel Irvine, and un-loaded the van (thanks to William and Wayne from The Source A/V for all the help with that) I didn't feel like I could speak to him the way I eventually did once we got all the boxes into our suite. I finally got down on a knee in front of him, as he was too weak to stand it seemed, and I told him "OK, fire me so I can take you to the hospital". He looked at me like I was crazy. I didn't know what else to say, but I wasn't kidding, I assure you of that. He finally agreed to let me take him to the ER. Now, we weren't alone in the suite during T.H.E. Show. We were partnered with:

The Source A/V



Woo Audio

So, naturally the other people in the room were also quite concerned, as well as Marine (Marine promotes and runs T.H.E. Show): She saw us walking out to the van, and she said Bruce looked horrible. We spent hours at the hospital, and Bruce's wonderful wife Youn Sun eventually joined us. They released him and told him to follow-up with his doctors. This was a new way to start an audio show for me! I mean, I've had my fair share of drama at industry functions, those that know me well know this: But when it comes to my friends health: Everything comes second. We decided to get Bruce home that night so he could get some sleep. We had an extra day of prep this year at Newport—he "press day" so we could actually set-up on Thursday—as long as we were ready for the actual opening on Friday we would be OK. Some people in our partnering teams weren't happy about it, but, again, I didn't let any of that phase me. I told Bruce at one point, and I meant it with everything I have: "There's no way I'm going to look your beautiful young lil' bride in the eye and tell her I lost you to a freakin' audio show"! I continue to stand by that, days later...

Thankfully Bruce got some sleep that night. He came to my door the following morning looking more like himself than I'd seen the previous twenty-four hours. We needed to grab tables from his storage facility nearby, so I got to follow him (he drove the van) in my Mini. If it's a local show I prefer to have my own car whenever possible. You never know right? This years show certainly hammered that point home! But Thursday morning (press-day) went really freakin' smoothly. If only the rest of the time coulda' passed like that morning! I had a feeling the "press-day" would just end up being another set-up day anyway (as I said above), and even if the press walked in it was going to be low-key. It's a high end audio show: People who've been in this industry/community for many years and still get all stressed-out and angry during set-up, I mean, c'mon guys. Somethin's always gonna go wrong during set-up! It's a prerequisite for a hi-fi show. As long as the systems are firing, and you're getting good sound by the time the doors open, nobody gives a shit. After I typed that it seemed a bit contrite—but it's how I feel about it. I'm also grateful that I don't get twisted-up so fast when it comes to setting gear up these days. There are things we can control, and things we can't. We just spent hours in the emergency room the day before this—so setting up a bunch of headphone rigs seemed like a damn vacation at that point! Unfortunately our room situation presented its own complexities and stress factors. We (remember I was with Questyle Audio then) had a large suite with two smaller rooms flanking both sides. In addition, we also had Woo Audio in the next room. All of the lines in the Presidential Suite were part of Jason Lord's audio retail arsenal at The Source A/V—so it made sense to have all of us featured together. But, as you may've guessed, it's like the old adage goes: Too many chefs in the fuckin' kitchen. Sorry for my addition there—it was necessary. So set-up day was full of challenges like always, but we had multiple personalities, consumer electronics lines, and differing ways of doing things of course. Me? Ha: I was in charge of setting up the desktop headphone rigs, so I wasn't trippin' at all. I mean, those of you who've striven to squeeze great sound out of your high-end two-channel systems in hotel rooms? You're the ones with serious sonic/acoustic obstacles to overcome—the biggest one being the room itself! Well, believe it or not, though this isn't usually a problem with headphone systems—I ended up having to contend with a nightmare room situation during the initial phase of set-up! It kinda' set the stage for what ensued (both great and nerve-wracking).

Basically, we had a main room that featured two pairs of Focal floor-standing loudspeakers on the opposing walls, so essentially there were two stereo system in that one room. The two adjoining rooms were, at-first, thought to be for ENIGMAcoustics (their Dharma D1000 electrostatic/dynamic hybrid cans, super-tweeters, and two-way speakers are all top-notch in my book—more on the cans ASAP) and Woo Audio. My good friend Michael Liang with Woo wanted to get going with his room set-up immediately, as he just got there on press-day. But there was a problem. He didn't have any of the tables or chairs he requested from T.H.E. Show in that side-room! On top of that: I was told to set-up our tables and desktop headphone systems in this little out-cove in the main room, directly across from one of the pairs of Focals! I thought: There goes the main reference system I spent days mapping out for attendees to experience. I was psyched to show-off the Questyle Audio Gold Edition headphone stack with the ENIGMAcoustics Dharma D100o, and I even brought all my own cables for the show systems (featuring Double Helix Cables, Kimber Kable, and Nordost). But how could we do that with the loudspeakers playin' in the room? I just put my head down and got to work. I also tried to find out what was going on with Woo Audio/Michael's tables and chairs. Ya see why I said earlier in this column that something will always go wrong during set-up? And I'm omitting much of the other melodrama that punctuated all this. But it's part of the game, and since that game is, when it comes right down to it: Playing music through stereos and headphones—it's important to keep a sense of humor when these challenges present themselves. Low and behold, once I got a couple desktop systems set-up in that little area, William and Wayne (both work for The Source A/V) discovered that we had a sign on the next room as well! Days had gone by without anyone noticing. When I walked up to the door and saw "The Source A/V / Woo Audio" on the sign I almost collapsed from laughter. Plus, when Michael opened the door, he suddenly had all the tables and chairs he'd ordered from T.H.E. Show. Needless to say, I was pumped. Not only did Michael and Woo Audio have all they needed, but we got to move the Questyle gear into the side-room where Michael/Woo were! We got a room, a spot with a door, so when the stereo was playing I could close it off for attendees wearing open-back headphones—this was huge. But it also meant we had to migrate all the systems I set-up in the main room to the other spot—and Michael also had to move everything. I don't remember the time exactly, but it was afternoon on press-day already. Feelin' the heat now?

The Questyle Audio Gold Edition Headphone Stack w/ my personal MrSpeakers ETHER-C, Double Helix Cables XTreme, Kimber Kable, & Nordost QBase power

The Questyle Audio Gold Edition Headphone Stack w/ my personal MrSpeakers ETHER-C, Double Helix Cables XTreme, Kimber Kable, & Nordost QBase power.

So, with the help of Alden Zhao (also works for Questyle and came all the way from China—a really cool guy) we managed to get everything moved into that adjoining room and get the systems rockin'! Bruce and Alden ended up turning that little out-cove into an extension of the Questyle display. We set-up a couple systems in there, but was mostly static display stuff and marketing merch. I insisted on only using closed headphones in the main room, but a pair of Dharmas ended up on a system out there anyway. My audio OCD (which is a different level entirely from my standard-issued OCD) was never tested like this before at a hi-fi show. I thought: If I can get through this without having my own heart attack, that shows undeniable personal progress since the same time last year! Despite a few expected hi-fi hiccups here and there like "Where's the screwdriver", "who's cable is this" or plowing through all sorts of boxes and bags and banners—we got the Presidential Suite lookin' and soundin' tight by dinner-time. What a relief. We had a fantastic meal to celebrate gettin' through that mess with Michael Liang and Jack Wu from Woo Audio. Liang's a dear friend (and former partner at Audio360.org) and I love kickin' it with him for dinner as I can always count on the food! He doesn't settle for crap, especially when he's workin' his tail off at an audio convention. T.H.E. Show was about to have its ribbon-cut, and the floodgates opened the following morning. We needed to get our grub on. Mission completed. I did my best to try and get some R.E.M. sleep of my own, and despite some twistin' and turnin' (stress'll do that) I managed to get downstairs for breakfast before anyone on my team—and that's a first! We planned to be down there by 8:30AM, and usually I've only been in bed for three or four hours at the point. I don't believe in coincidence by the way, and seeing Tim de Paravicini of E.A.R. eating breakfast at the Hilton that morning reinforced that feeling! Tim's one of my heroes, and I'm honored to call him my friend. He's built, and re-built studio gear for Pink Floyd, Paul McCartney, and many other great artists. His 868 tube preamplifier and HP4 headphone amp are two of my most-cherished pieces of audio kit. He's also just as excited about recorded and reproduced music today as I imagine he was when he was a young man living in South Africa, and I learn something new every-time I see him. Spotting him finishing his morning meal felt mighty serendipitous. I found out he was going to walk to the Hotel Irvine for T.H.E. Show—so he ended up joining me, Bruce and Alden for breakfast and we gave him a lift to Hotel Irvine. This gave me a burst of positive energy precisely when I needed it...


Friday went by as smoothly as I've ever experienced for a first day at a hi-fi trade show. Most of that was due to Harmony Hicks, a.k.a Headphone Princess (her Twitter Username). She came to enjoy T.H.E. Show on the first day in order to catch-up with friends and fellow Head-Fiers because she said she had to take care of her boys over the weekend. So, after hearing this: I was honored to have her assistance in the small Questyle headphone gear room for much of the day! Harmony knew that practically every cable and audio tweak in that room came from my Sonic Satori Personal Audio Lab. As a member of the OccupyHifi crew—she knows how much that means to me, and more importantly: She's a serious Head-Fier and loves music and great sound through headphones! We actually met through my writing about Audeze years ago. So it was awesome to have her there helping me. We moved like a jazz duo, and took care of people, no matter what they wanted and needed. One of the funniest moments of T.H.E. Show occured when a gentleman came in and wanted to hear the statement Questyle Gold Edition headphone stack. Obviously mistaking Harmony for your run-of-the-mill booth-babe, he told her he "needed to hear the stack balanced". She told him the set-up was in fact balanced (at that time, via our Kimber Kable AXIOS 4-pin adapter for the mono-blocks, plus my Double Helix Cables 4-pin XLR-to-female 2.5mm adapter). So she asked him what he'd like to hear, and he said somethin' like "no darling, I'm not sure if you understand me, but there's a difference between balanced and single-ended outputs and I need to have it be balanced." Harmony, having a terrific sense of humor, said "oh, I totally understand, you think I'm the resident booth babe." "I actually know this stuff and I love it." "I'm a Head-Fier and I love music through headphones, so I can give you a balanced headphone experience, or I'll just grab Mercer to help you if that's what you'd prefer". He looked stunned, but smiled. So she came and got me—and we got him all set-up.

Another highlight of the day was having Edwin come to the room so he could experience ENIGMAcoustics Dharma D1000 hybrid electrostatic/dynamic headphones! Edwin is blind, and so Dr. David Pritchard escorted him up to our suite. Dr. Pritchard and I know each other well through the LAOCAS (Los Angeles & Orange County Audio Society) and he told Edwin "this is Michael Mercer, who learned under Harry Pearson, he's gonna take great care of you". So, no, that didn't make me nervous at all Doc! Thankfully I'd brought my personal pair of ENIGMAcoustics Dharmas with me, and I say that because I've spent serious time breaking those badboys in! I got Edwin all set-up on the Gold Edition stack, wired him up with my most cherished Double Helix Cables Molecule for the D1000—and he was off. I gotta say, having a blind man listen to a rig I set-up made me more nervous than any writer/reviewer, or industry veteran. I mean, if anybody can pick up nuance, soul, and connect to things audibly, it's Edwin! After selecting some classical for him I noticed he was reaching out for me and calling my name. I was a bit distracted. There was some drama in the room: Egos battling, things like that—and so Dr. Pritchard called my attention back to Edwin. He grabbed my forearm gently, leaned over to talk to me, and said (and I don't remember his precise quote so please forgive me) "Michael, I have to tell you this has been perhaps the most magical musical experience of the day thus far." That was it for me! I felt like pulling the George Constanza (Seinfeld reference) and leavin' "on the high note!" We snapped a couple pictures together, and Edwin came back on Sunday and bought a pair of ENIGMAcoustics Dharmas! That really made my show—just that alone!

Such a pleasure, providing Edwin with some good sound, and seeing Dr. Prichard. Thanks guys!

Such a pleasure, providing Edwin with some good sound, and seeing Dr. Pritchard. Thanks guys!

The other highlight of Friday at T.H.E. Show? Havin' Tim DeParavicini stop by with my friend Wes Bender (of Wes Bender Studios NYC—one of the most passionate, and knowledgeable high-end audio dealers in NYC—IMHO). Like I said earlier in this column: I always learn something new from Tim when I hang out with him, and this years Newport show carried on that tradition. I believe Tim may've overheard the man giving Harmony a hard time over the "balanced headphone" thing (though I'm not certain), because they we were: me, Harmony, Wes, and other attendees listening to Tim describe the origins, the actual history of the XLR connector dating back to the fifties! That was a treat. There he was, the legendary Tim de Paravicini on his knees, illuminating the inside of the terminated XLR cable, so he could show Harmony how pin 1 is set slightly ahead in the casing than pin 2, and so on. She later told me it was great to hear his passion for music (he spoke about artists he's currently working with) and sound, despite all his success. He's a class act for sure. Something else I love about Tim? If he has something related to what he's taught me; a picture, an article, etc., he never forgets to send it along for me. As soon as he got home he scanned a Canon advertisement from 1956, showing their first XLR connector, for me to check out! Very cool. I love hearing about the origins of things we utilize in high-fidelity today. Check out the ad:


So Friday was a raging success. Though unfortunately, I could also tell that our team was somehow becoming disjointed. I decided to get some down-time that night, as opposed to head out to dinner with everybody. I felt we'd made a collective mistake in not hiring Hector, a friend of Bruce's (mine too) who takes care of his wonderful pit bull in the Valley, and has worked plenty of shows for Bruce. Hector's not an audiophile, but he's a solid worker. He's a monster actually, but last-minute he (Hector) told me we didn't need him apparently. I begged to differ! Bottom-line: I believe that main issue was that Bruce and Alden expected me to stay in the room the entire show. But, being the "Brand Master" as it stated, ironically, on the business cards I received from Alden—I wasn't expected to be tied to the room the whole time. Now, as a dear friend of mine (who's also worked with me) pointed-out: Had Bruce told me directly that he needed me in the room at all times because of whatever reason, I would've absolutely obliged him. Now, that's a communication breakdown on both our parts. Because, to me, I do as much for the brand, if not more, being out—meeting with various people in the industry, and new-comers who read my stuff (whom I sent right up to the Questyle / The Source AV Suite) . I also know in my heart, especially after the ordeal on set-up day, that it was beneficial to all of us in the suite for me to spend some time out and about. I got a helluva lot of editors and reviewers up to that Suite just by networking alone. After all, like I said before: I grew up in this shit! But I think the guys up there expected otherwise, and it was starting to cause a riff.

What did I decide to do about it? Find some help for Bruce, someone trusted he could hire to help work the room for the last day of T.H.E. Show! Thanks to my good friend Andre Moore! I met Andre three years ago at my very first Headphonium event at T.H.E. Show Newport! This was at the old location of course. Ever since then he's proven to be a hard-worker, he's very passionate about music and great sounding headphones (also a fellow Head-Fier) and he's also worked for Bruce before! He just flew out to Chicago earlier this year in order to work AXPONA for Questyle. So I spoke with Andre, he crashed in my room Saturday night, and he spoke with Bruce and made a deal to work the room on the last day. I figured: This was exactly what we needed. Even better: Andre already knew all the gear! He jumped into the room in quickly dialed himself into work-mode. I was proud to see it, and I've been proud to see his work ethic develop since we met. As we all know, the last day of any trade show outside of CES is pretty damn low-key. So I figured between Andre, Alden, Bruce, and me (I didn't stay away forever, as evidenced by all the pictures I have with people in the room) we'd be golden for Sunday! So I made sure all systems were firing nicely, checked-in with Andre, asked him if he minded if I took a walk to meet some people—he gave me the enthusiastic thumbs-up and I was off. I had a specific mission for Questyle that day. A cigarette or two later, I noticed things started to wind down early. I headed up to the suite, as I skipped breakfast, and I wanted to see if I could get anything for the team. Andre told me he needed to eat (he's diabetic) but he didn't have any cash on him. I was starving, so I asked Alden (works closely with the Founder of Questyle in China) if it would be OK if I took Andre down to get some food. He said no problem, but apparently it was a problem, as one thing led to another, and from that point forward I was back to being press! I'm not pointing the finger at anybody, I just couldn't take it anymore. The stories have become so twisted coming back to me, that I felt obligated to tell the story from my perspective.

Nina from Wywires. Love her!

Nina from WyWires. Love her!

But in the end it felt like, and it still feels like it was all for the best. I don't believe in coincidence. I think everything happens for a reason, and hey, I got to spend the rest of the final day with my dear friends in the hi-fi press anyway! So I had fun, but it was also immensely challenging. Sounds like a metaphor for life doesn't it? That's just the way it is sometimes. What makes for a great friendship does not always create a suitable working relationship. I'm sure many of you know what I mean. In closing, I just wanted to say that I enjoyed my short tenure with Questyle greatly, and I'm still a huge fan of their products. And, hey, they were just awarded "Best Sound in Show" by The Absolute Sound for Newport! So we all did something right I guess! I don't think they've ever been awarded that honor before, which is really cool. So, T.H.E. Show Newport 2016 was a strange trip indeed! But it sure as hell wasn't boring, and despite any of the drama I'm always reminded of how blessed I am to have such great friends and acquaintances in this industry/community. Nothing can ever take away from the magic of that. So it's upward and onward, and I'll hopefully see you next year at T.H.E. Show! It looks like Tyll Hertsens of Innerfidelity maybe lending me a helping hand in order to bring T.H.E. Headphonium back next year! We shall see! No matter what: I know I'm spending more time in the Positive Feedback Hospitality Suite in 2017! I feel like I deserve a lil' downtime with my PF family. I think we all deserve a little down-time with our families, period. I love hi-fi, but I'm never gonna risk my health for the sake of a hi-fi trade show, and I hope my friends start thinking the same way—because I care greatly for them, far beyond the knobs and the buttons. We're a community, and as a community we gotta lift each other up and look out for one another. I know I know, sounds a lil' too dirty-hippy-ish. But it's the truth! See you at the next show, and don' forget to hydrate. At the very least, I think perhaps my friend and former-boss learned that lesson at T.H.E. Show Newport! Me? I'm about to lose myself to the new James Blake LP and relax.

Happy Listening!

Andre Moore - Kid works his a__ off. Much appreciated Dre!

Andre Moore - Kid works his a__ off. Much appreciated Dre!