I was a weird kid...the first of four brothers. One of my first memories is seeing a parade on TV that turned out to be JFK's funeral procession. I was mesmerized by that image. Another was Courageous Cat and Minute Mouse. I thought fighting 'The Frog' and crime in Empire City was okay, but man, I loved that guitar lick in the theme song. That had staying power.
We had one of those console record players, a real big one and it got pretty loud. We listened to music all the time. My Mom had a lot of girlhood 45's from the 1950's; "Ain't That A Shame" by Fats Domino, "Charlie Brown" by The Coasters ... so many great records from that era. The Beatles' "A Hard Day's Night" also got played a LOT. The radio was always on too. "Angel Of The Morning", "Hang On Sloopy" and a zillion other great songs from the '60s infused my head with rhythms and melody during car rides. I was way into the Beatles and always got their new records for Christmas growing up. I knew all the songs. The record labels and cover art also fascinated me and eventually I became an avid collector of vinyl.
I was a little kid in 1968. There was a lot of crazy stuff going on, stuff I didn't understand, things that didn't make sense. The following year, my own father had a car wreck and died. After that, the world didn't make sense to me at all. All I knew was that music made it better, tolerable. Abbey Roadand Let It Be would be my salvation. I decided I needed to play guitar. I got a hold of an old guitar with mile high action and taught myself to play with the help of Roy Clark's Quick Pickin', Fun Strummin' guitar lesson set. It was a long slog to get to the point of being able to play songs, but I finally started jamming with friends and formed a band. We played songs by The Who, Neil Young and the early Beatles, and I became inspired to explore vocal harmonies.
The next period of my journey was evolutionary, beginning with formal training: guitar lessons and Berklee College, where I studied sound production and engineering, later playing in bands around Boston. I never approached playing music as a career so much as a lifestyle choice. After attempting to earn a living doing jobs that left me less than satisfied, I decided to become a musician full time. Playing and singing, along with the ability to engineer and record, became my new path. In 1999, I recorded my first album, Destination Venus, a collection of recent and Berklee era tunes I'd written, focusing on love, friendship and other aspects of the human condition. I did some shows, married, divorced, met some cool people along the way, lived some more, wrote some more, then wrote some more. Life always had a way of seeping into the music.
2005 saw the beginning of recording for my second album, Little Known Secret. I was fortunate enough to have producer and mastering guru Scott Hull (Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Steely Dan, Elvis Costello) produce it and accidentally mentor me along the way. The process was a crooked road, but I learned a lot from Scott about myself as well as fresh ways to approach songwriting and producing. I began to have a deeper interest in recording others' music. In 2007, Roots Cellar Recordings was born. It's a boutique recording studio setting where I set out to capture acoustic artists in their purest form - from the intimacy of solo voice and guitar to a full rhythm section. Currently in the studio with Marc Von Em and Mark Westin, I have also been busy finishing up a new record of my own, loosely titled Heading South To Go North. The title sums up the meandering journey of musical and personal exploration I've been on. I've realized that sometimes you turn down the wrong road, but it's those side trips that shape you the most.