In the Studio and Onstage
For more than 50 years I was primarily a live performer. The thrill of standing onstage, playing and singing, hooked me from that first performance in the hall of an old Catholic church in 1965 (but don't ask me about the stunning jolt of 110V I got before even singing the first song touching a light switch while holding a microphone - that instilled in me a healthy fear of electricity that remains to this day...)
Regrettably, cameras and recording devices were vastly less present and less ubiquitous in those days, so much so that there are almost no photos or recordings of some truly energetic and creative live performances by the bands in which I earned my keep and fed my growing addiction to playing music, although at times I'm grateful that certain aspects of those halcyon days were not documented on film.
My first ventures into a recording studio were as an electric bassist, the instrument that I held during the vast majority of my performing career. I'd been booted out of that very first band, when I was solely a standup lead vocalist, and vowed that I'd never be kicked out of another band. Hence my adoption of the bass.
At times we were able to gain use of a consumer-level reel to reel or cassette recorder and make a few recordings. One of those times captured a magical evening in 1974 when fledgling superstar Dan Fogelberg joined me and fellow Smokin' Grays guitarist Michael Fitzgerald for a lengthy instrumental jam in a dimly lit room far out in the Illinois countryside that to this day those who were fortunate enough to sit in residence maintain included some of the best music they've ever heard. I can't argue with the claim. It was magic of the best kind, moments during which the music did not originate in our minds but instead flowed through us from a place not of our choosing. Those moments, though few and far between for all but the most gifted of musicians, are moments I'll treasure forever.
Studio ventures remained sporadic through the 70s and 80s, vanishing for me completely until recently, when my rebirth as a solo performer and backup guitarist coincided with the easy availability of far higher quality digital recording equipment available to virtually anyone. Even our phones now can capture reasonably high quality audio and video, and even the entry level Digital Audio Workstations (DAW) prove to be capable in the right hands of recording and mixing music of nearly professional level quality.
On this page I've offered links to a number of recent recordings of several of my original tunes. During live performances I enjoy blending favorite cover tunes with my originals, but here I offer solely a sampling of my own music.