Book 6: Bone Cold-Alive Series
If there was one thing that amused Jefferson Bo Bailey above all else, it was the myth that rock stars had, well, rocky starts. Tales of hardship, estrangement, and abuse abounded in the rock world, almost as if you couldn’t be successful until you’d done time on the unlucky side of life. It was a theory that held for his four fellow band members of Bone Cold—Alive, but it had never meant a thing to him.
Bo Bailey was, as his mother reminded him every time he saw her, a “blessed” child. That he was taller than she was by a foot and closer to forty than thirty made no difference. He was her baby boy. His three older brothers teased him about that and, as none of them were particularly successful in their chosen careers—particularly in light of his success—they were also quite jealous. But that hadn’t come about until he was grown and on the top of the charts and the front of the tabloids. Before that, during his happy childhood which, despite the grousing, he did remember fondly, he was the one they blamed everything on and used for target practice. Need to train the dogs for raccoon hunting? Send Bo out in the fields with a skin. See if the dogs can find him. No need for an automatic thrower for skeet practice in preparation for dove season. Just set Bo at the back of the big pond and tell him to heave them up there.
His mother ruled the house with a “boys will be boys” attitude, and his father was determined his sons would all grow up to be “real men.” But when his grandfather offered to rescue him one afternoon if he’d give the harmonica a try, Bo didn’t say no. He drew the line at his great-aunt’s accordion and regretted it yet. Not that he couldn’t pick it up. Still… small favors had sat him beside an elderly cousin at a dreaded family reunion and he’d inherited the banjo he’d learned to play when he was ten.
So walking into a New Orleans French Quarter club when he was twenty-one and fresh off his junior year in college (the only member of the band with any real claim to higher education, never mind he didn’t finish the degree), and finding T, C, and Ron playing there, was all the opportunity he needed. He put the harmonica to his mouth—the banjo still belonging to the cousin and being a bit cumbersome for his pockets anyway—and joined them from the audience. By the end of the night, he had a place in the band. His harmonica got him the job; his bass voice, with a range to pull shivers from the listener, secured it for him. Three years later, he was part of the number one single on the rock and pop charts.
He never looked back, although he bought his brothers a pair of fine coonhounds and a new rifle apiece. His mother he set up in the house she’d always lusted after, and his dad had the finest tractor in the county. He made sure his grandfather’s grave was carefully tended and then, confident he’d done what he could, Bo finally left home.