October 10, 2012

I had to write this note, because I had to share with the world what this little but immense experience with Mr. Ron Bumblefoot Thal has meant to me. In this day and age of egoistic, conceited and competitive musicians and celebrities, Ron comes in like a breath of fresh air. There was an air of love, positivity, humility and celebration from the first day I had my SKYPE chat with him. It was very hard to believe that a guitar player from a legendary band had the time to encourage and write back to every fan and budding musician who wrote to him. The last few days with him have clearly emulated his discipline as a human being, his value for acknowledgement, his family values and his ethical background when it came to dealing with his job as a musician.

There were so many lines that were spoken by him that will stay with me forever and will make me learn and yearn to be like him. To quote a few, he said ďMUSIC SOMETIMES HAS A BIGGER PURPOSE IN LIFEĒ and with that he was referring to charity and things like giving back to the community. In this day and age when most musicians are worried about album sales, video ratings and being seen, it made me realize how giving back to the needy with the one thing you do best, which is music, can be so valuable and rewarding. It is bigger than winning a Grammy. Our visit with him to AUTISM center was an eye opener. His commitment to charity amazed me and his commitment to keep doing it is praise worthy. 

Ronís visit to Dubai was a whirlwind visit although it was meant to give him a break from the high energy touring with Guns Ní Roses. He clearly loves his job with GNR and he speaks about his band mates with a lot of passion. A lot of things I heard were very interesting and private and canít be discussed in this note, but all in all, Ron can be described as someone who speaks his mind, loud and clear. But what makes it more fun is the fact that Ron is a very funny guy. He throws in a lot of good humor with everything he discloses. My favorite one is, that he has not forgiven JOE SATRIANI for getting him the Guns Ní Roses gig : ) 

I also wish we had more local musicians and bands to have attended the GUITAR WORKSHOP hosted by Ron and Point Of View. The workshop was more of a sharing experience about his life as a musician and less about guitars. Practically anyone, musician or non-musician had a lot to learn from this workshop. For me it was enriching, educational and unique. I think the audience got more than what was expected. Ron has a lot to say to budding bands and such advice usually does not come free. I feel bad for the people who missed out this workshop, especially when it was a completely FREE WORKSHOP. People usually would have to pay a lot for this kind of intimate interaction with a GUITAR PLAYER of the cadre of Ron. The workshop had Ron with his usual high energy anecdotes and brutally honest confessions. I guess, people donít expect a guy of his cadre to be like the guy you always you knew. But yes, that is Ron. I can speak for my band POINT OF VIEW here and I know that knowing Ron has made us strive to be better and disciplined musicians but even better human beings. I call Ron the PACKAGE that cleanses you. He comes, he explains, he gives you love, he delivers and he leaves when his job is done : ) I guess his Jesus Christ look is getting the better of me : ) There are so many thing I can write in this note about Ron the Guitar Player, Ron the Son, Ron the Good Samaritan, Ron the Charitable man, Ron the Humble human being, Ron the survivor .. . the list is endless. Ron's life could make an amazing tv series actually .. in fact unlike a lot of other TV series this one could be super inspiring .. 

On the personal front I know that Ron has been through a lot with his health and after hearing the horror stories of how he has dealt with it, it only amazes me to understand the level of commitment the man has shown to himself and the people who depended on him. Despite his health, he came down to the POINT OF VIEW album launch and he learnt all our songs, and not just one odd song. It clearly said a lot about his commitment to practically anyone and everyone. 

Needless to say, there is one constant factor that has contributed to his recovery and his strength and that is Jennifer. People usually stereotype celebrity spouses but its only when you get to know them on a one on one basis, do we realize what it is to be, playing that role. Jennifer has clearly stood by Ron as a rock solid support and it also shows us how important a life partner can be. Rock Stars do have families and they do value them. Jennifer continues being a Veterinarian, while Ron keeps up with his hectic touring with GNR, CHARITY FUND RAISERS and constant support to new artistes. 

On behalf of POINT OF VIEW, Iíd like to thank Ron for being the man who has changed our lives and the man who has educated and inspired us with the simple things in life that we sometimes choose to ignore. Thank you Ron ; for being who you are. A wonderful human being and a loving friend and a truly inspiring musician. We wish you all the best in your life and we know nothing can stop the force that is within you. 

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