A Promise Kept

A couple years ago when the first SAINT MONOLITH came out, I met this awesome guy Dino Maddalone. He was kind and supportive, and nice enough to mention me on his show. I promised him I would write him into the sequel. I’ve kept that promise, and am proud to call him a friend. Below is his show from two years ago, and below that is his chapter in The Saint of Seven Mile, releasing February 14th.



Dino Maddalone was a high school friend of Mason’s. An old-school record producer, he carried with him a class and charm that would have made him more at home in the Rat Pack days of Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra than the classless mess the industry had become today. Remaining an icon in the industry even though the years were wearing on, Dino was drumming for R&B groups in Vegas and doing appearances in films. Back in California he ran a small music studio, but these were new times, tough times, and money didn’t flow into the studio the way it had decades before. Even good people find themselves struggling sometimes, and when money was tight in the studio, Dino had found himself seeking the help of another friend, Nicky Romano.

Nicky had a new business too, one that thrived in tough times, known by most as loan sharking. His shithole of a shop had a big ‘Pawn’ sign over the door, but his real money was made through illegal loans with fatal interest rates. Dino, Mason and Nicky had all been friends back in the day, but those days were long gone, and Nicky was all about business, not friends.

Mason’s phone had gone off at 2am. There was the usual chatter that goes on between friends who haven’t spoken in several years, fifteen minutes of talking about the real issue, ten more minutes of explaining things to Sue, and by 6:45am Mason was on a flight from Detroit to LA.

Nicky had turned on Dino pretty hard. Threatened his family, torched a car. Now the offer was to sign over the studio property or they would take Dino’s soul next. Old friendships die hard, but Dino might die first. Dino was a tough man, cut from the same cloth as the Clint Eastwood and John Wayne sort; but he was also smart, and taking on a mafia thug by himself wasn’t.