Release Date: February 12 , 2015
Emily Portman loves her job. A writer for Breakout! Magazine, she shadows and showcases up-and-coming bands. When her next assignment takes her to Austin, Texas, she can’t wait to add the city to her map of places she’s visited. Places she’s left without looking back. Her plan is to keep moving on, and the last thing she needs is a man holding her back. She’s not going down that road again.
Tyler Macy is stuck in a rut. Despite his exceptional talent as a musician, he has chosen to take a backseat with his music and let others grab the limelight. Wounded and mistrustful, he doesn’t appreciate his friends’ efforts to bring him back to center stage. Emily comes onto the scene and sees his full potential, but he fights to stay in the shadows, shutting her out before she can add to the scars another woman gave him.
For Tyler to find his music again, he needs to accept the help that Emily and their friends offer. When he discovers that his muse lies underneath Emily’s skin, it is still not enough to keep her from walking away. Neither will admit what they really want until it is too late.
Emily is once again thrown in Tyler’s path when she is assigned to join them on tour. Despite the pain in his past, Tyler sees that she is worth it, even if she’s stolen both his heart and peace of mind. In order for them to be together, they both must discover whether the music and their passion are enough to overcome the obstacles that separate them.
Maybe finding love is worth the risk.
CHARACTER INTERVIEW WITH EMILY PORTMAN:
I went to music college many years ago, so like you, I’m accustomed to the personalities of artists (although my sphere was chiefly classical while yours is rock and roll). Musical circles are very eclectic. What’s it like dealing with rockers?
It really depends on the type, I suppose. I usually get to be with them before they become the next big thing, Before fame settles in. That’s not to say that ego isn’t a huge factor with each band I’ve been with. But there’s not a box that I could put all of them in. Of course I’ve seen my fair share of big heads and drunk groupies backstage. But I’ve also seen quite a few small bands make it relatively big and they’ve just been in awe of the experience.
Sometimes during a show, things happen backstage that are so unglamorous –contrary to public perception- that for years afterward, you still say to yourself, “I can’t believe that happened!” One time, I was standing backstage with other cast members. Onstage, a death was being enacted. It was so quiet in the house you could have heard a pin drop. We had a performer who was quite a large man. He’d been sitting in a wooden chair with arms for much of the scene, waiting for his cue. When he stood up, the chair was stuck to him. It crashed to the ground and probably everyone in the theater jumped. One of our performers slapped his hand over his mouth and bee-lined for the green room. He didn’t wait for the door to shut before braying laughter like a goat, so the whole audience heard.
The rest of us, backstage, were biting our tongues not to laugh. The musical director was (of course) in the pit and the director of the show was out in the audience. They were so ticked that we heard about it for ages, but nobody would snitch. Do you have an experience like that, that has stayed with you?
One of the younger bands I was shadowing had a show where a record exec was in the audience. The lead singer had practically burned a hole in the carpet for the last half hour before they were supposed to go onstage. And when they were called out, he took the stage with the biggest hard-on. I was impressed, actually. Performed the entire first song with his zipper tented.
Hahahah! Poor dude. Or not. He probably got a lot of cred for that. Your work for a recording label scouting for bands. How does one get hired for that job?
Hard work? Lots of begging? Just kidding. I was in the right place at the right time after I graduated. But I’ve always known what I wanted. So I went for it and hoped they’d take a chance on me.
Cool. Now, on a more serious note, one of the people in the band in Maybe becomes a drug addict. I was reading a different book about a band and the author described cocaine as a drug that people used casually and that nobody considered its use a big risk. When I was in music (admittedly, I’m ancient), the harshest drug I came across was coke and most people didn’t take anything stronger than marijuana, hash or acid. I was shocked when this author implied that cocaine is not a dangerous drug and can be used casually. Would you say that’s common thinking now?
My boss used to tell me that coke was an 80’s drug, but I don’t quite believe that. But I think heroin and meth? Those would be considered the coke of today. But very few people I have known past and present have used coke casually.
How prevalent is drug use in the music scene? Is it as rampant and open as people imagine, or can people who object to it easily avoid it?
I’ve seen firsthand that it can be avoided if you want to bad enough. I’ve seen enough to know that there are musicians who think that the rock star lifestyle is just a given. You play guitar? You trash hotel rooms and snort lines off of groupies’ asses. But there are select few who are in it for the love of music and that’s what they want. To play music.
Band groupies: I used to know a girl who followed a band all over North America. Pretty much every live performance recording available on Youtube for that band can be attributed to her. The band is no longer together and people are grateful (she did all the fans a service). But generally, there isn’t much respect for groupies. What would you say to a young person who wants to “follow the band”?
I guess the question is: why are you following the band? Because you want to be at every single show and be in that moment in the crowd? Or is it because you want recognition from the band or other people? Are you just there to get backstage?
Is there a favourite tour that you’ve been on where everything just went beautifully or is there always a fly in the ointment?
There is no such thing as perfection. That’s what makes life worth living. Wouldn’t you agree?
Indeed. Favourite artists or bands:
Currently? Milky Chance just announced their 2015 tour and I’m excited to get to see them live. Tyler would kill me if I didn’t mention The Badger. I mean, obviously, they’re a given. And I’m always obsessed with A Day to Remember. But don’t ever tell Tyler I said I like that latest Taylor Swift song. If you do then he’ll be really shitty about the entire thing and I’ll have to tell you that I caught him singing One Direction the other day.
My lips are sealed. Thanks for visiting today. 🙂
Walking toward him is like trudging through the deepest mud, but I hold my head high, my hands in my pockets and strides long. When I’m less than a foot away, his head turns toward me without lifting his chin, and he looks up from under his brows. The white smoke from his cigarette causes his eyes to nearly close before he pulls it from his lips and exhales upward into the air.
I’m struck by how incredibly handsome he is in black wool and new jeans. I want to know if his skin feels hot under his clothes and if his back feels the same when I scratch fingernails across his spine. My fists clench in my coat pockets at the thought. This is going to be so much harder than I’d been prepared for.