Dave Adkins is a big man, with an even bigger voice. He can dominate the stage without even trying, but he can also win you over with tenderness. Not an easy task for someone with the power he has at his disposal.
But when a big man falls, it makes a big thud. And that’s what happened yesterday out in front of his house.
After a visit to the emergency room, the doctors found a broken acromion bone in his right shoulder, the bone that connects the collarbone to the shoulder. And at least in the short term, the treatment involves complete immobilization of his shoulder, and a lot of rest.
Which is not an ideal situation for a touring performer like Dave. For the first time in his life, Adkins will have to miss shows this weekend with Adkins & Loudermilk in Maryland and Virginia.
When we caught up with him this afternoon, he reported a good deal of pain and soreness, but that he was fortunate to have his wife, Katrina (an RN) at home caring for him. He’s wearing a sling and swathe to keep the shoulder still, but said that he can’t remain in any one position long before it starts to hurt.
Those that know him know that Dave loves to spin a yarn, which is just what he did when we asked him how he fell.
“I am an absolute animal lover – every animal, I love ’em. I’m the guy who keeps dog food in the truck in case I see a stray, and out where I live a lot of people dump off animals they don’t want. Well, I was on my way to the ENT specialist yesterday for a checkup, and I had found out that a friend of mine had died. So I came across the mountain to give a donation to another friend who was going to send flowers.
On the way back I saw a puppy, and I went out there to try to get him. But he got up in a hollow log and I couldn’t get to him. That made me late, and I got in a hurry, and – big dummy that I am – when I got back home one of the cats that we feed out here got tangled up in my feet, and I went up in the air and came down hard.”
The doctors have told him that they won’t know for a few days how bad the break actually is. Dave has an appointment on Monday with a surgeon who will examine the shoulder more thoroughly after some of the swelling has gone down.
“They are saying six weeks recovery if I don’t need surgery, and six months if I do.
This weekend will be the first shows that I can ever remember missing, and it’s really tearing me up. The doctor told me not to travel at all, and it’s 8 hours from home to our first show. It’s embarrassing to be my age and trip over a cat and be doped up and all that.
I’m just thankful that I wasn’t hurt any worse. It could’ve been really bad, but I’m still able to get around.”
Dave has been in the midst of recording a new solo project, and though he won’t be able to play guitar, he can still sing. Tony Wray of Blue Mafia has already cut the guitar for this album, so Dave is in the clear there.
At this point, Adkins expects the new Mountain Fever CD to be released on schedule in February, with a debut single coming just after the new year. His own new Dave Adkins Band will be introduced December 18 at Simply The Best Sports Bar and Grill in Grayson, KY.
Whether he’ll have a guitar or a shoulder brace strapped on, we’ll have to wait and see.