It was not just the music in him, either. He was the gentlest of spirits. People would be stand-offish at first because he could look scary. But soon he would win everybody over. He was just a hell of a good guy!

I think people like Carl are sent here by God to remind us that we need to be better people.
Richard Steiner, Phoenix

A man of many gifts: I had the blessing of knowing Carl Gholson. I was absolutely shocked to hear of the crack pipe, as well. I knew many of the other things about Carl: his gift of empathy, his musical gift, his gift for social commentary that transcended literal communication.

I wonder if his illness wasn't schizophrenia but spiritual emergency.

Regarding that saxophone (with which I was blessed to be serenaded by Carl one Christmas Eve), I wonder if Carl, ever the salesman, sold it. He may have done so because he couldn't play it once his teeth came out.
A friend of Carl's, Phoenix

Give Blood

Any night's all right for fighting: I am 51 and female. I have been attending hardcore shows in the Valley for a little more than a year, and I'm honored to know some of the kids you speak of in "Blood Brothers" (Brendan Joel Kelley, October 6). It's the passion, honor and heart of these kids, almost as much as the music, that keeps me going back.

I've been clocked at shows. Sometimes there's no safe place to be. So be it, as long as it's not done with malice. It happens. I don't like the fighting at shows, but I wouldn't like fighting as a means to resolve any issue, no matter where I was. Whenever you have people gathered in an environment fueled by adrenaline, there are going to be instances of intolerance.

Is the scene in Phoenix perfect? No, of course not! Nothing is, people aren't. On the whole, though, it's the closest thing to perfect I've found in my time. I'd rather spend an evening with these kids -- listening to the best original music I've heard in years -- than listening to covers in a smoky bar. (Don't even get me started on that scene -- a bloody nose is better than some asshole putting Ecstasy in a girl's drink.)
Marion Wilkinson, Phoenix

Scumbag brothers: Why would New Times feature a story about such scumbags on its cover! "Blood Brothers," indeed!

Just when I think things are getting saner within America's youth culture, I read something like this. The kids who are into this violent scene should be taken directly to Tent City.
John Malcom, Phoenix

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