Playing guitar has been a major part of my life since I was 10 or so. For 13th birthday got a Gibson Melody Maker Deluxe (3 pick-ups!) which was the poor cousin of an SG. How I longed for an SG...Pete Townsend played an SG, so did Carlos, Clapton and even George Harrison during Let It Be. Nonetheless, I stuck with my Melody Maker through high school and college-it was a good friend.
Pre 1975 - SUNY at Oswego - stagnation - how many times can one
play along with Tommy! A freshman year roommate could play well and I challenged myself to be as good - this was how I ventured into playing lead. Listening and playing along with Allmans, Marshall Tucker, Charlie Daniels and a whole host of Southern Rockers - I got the pentatonic down and surprised all friends when I came home that summer. People said it actually sounded good! An ego boost was one quad mate, Doctor Dim (uh, he wasn't pre-med) quipped that my playing along with Dark Side sounded like live Pink Floyd - maybe the pills were talking but I bought it.
1978- SUNY at Albany, toting my Melody Maker wherever I went, bugging people to jam, eventually met up with Adam who was putting together the band Gut Course - my first real band. This was exposure to different music, a female vocalist and some real structure. By this time, I listened a lot of fusion, which overlapped into Steely Dan (pre-Aja), who were a big influence. At the Albany Telethon in '79, my 15
min of fame was warming up with Reelin' in the Years in front of hundreds of fellow students and being memorialized on the local TV station (the VHS tape Adam later procured). Latter that summer, sitting somewhere on 5th Ave, someone recognized me from the Albany gig and went on to say how my playing influenced his musical tastes - no, Dr. Dim wasn't back.
1980s - Post college had me playing in Washington Square Park, Central Park and on the streets in the Village, often with Adam (for some extra cash and meeting women); playing lots of major 7ths
with a weird jazz-like trio, an interesting band - Horizon -which was
mostly rock originals, an acoustic cover trio; expansion into recording (TEAC 144 Portastudio) and self-teaching basic keyboards via a Fender Rhodes and Korg Poly 800 (still have both).
1990s - Ah yes, the children arrive - but kept playing as much as possible - coffeehouse trio (Adam again!) and open jams in Peekskill kept the strings tuned. 2000s - Vibrant music scene in Dutchess, particularly in Beacon where I've played in various "fests", and local
bar/party bands. The last few years is constant music playing - a solid cover bar band with folks from the Danbury area and a new chapter with the Thornwoods, my long-time friend Adam and some real talented folks. Thanks for the opportunity!
The Melody Maker doesn't see much light these days as a Brian Moore I2.13 gets top honors. An Epiphone Sheraton II is used for a change of perspective, the keyboards have multiplied and some dabbling on a mandolin for a change of pace. I guess I also sing a bit these days as an outcome of me sitting in Central Park years ago and people not moving away.
- see ya at the gig!