It all started when I was fourteen years old. I was standing next to my older brother, Joe, as he practiced with his trio in our parent’s living room. Dying to be just like him, I stood and watched mesmerized. As he played, I would study his hands and try to do what he did. As soon as my brother’s trio finished practicing, my two friends would come over and we would follow in their footsteps, practicing for hours. Eventually, we started a band of our own. It lead to us becoming the regular high school dance band, VFW band, and college frat party band. Before we knew it, we were playing up to five nights a week in night clubs all over South Jersey. It was the time of my life. I got to do what I loved with my two best friends. The three of us are still in our band and still play in clubs year round.
I grew out of my teens, and this is when I was introduced to artists like Gino Vannelli and Chick Corea, I was mesmerized by the sound of the synthesizer. I was only accustomed to playing the Hammond, and at age twenty, I knew I needed to try the synthesizer. I explored and experimented with the different sounds of the synthesizer and couldn’t get enough. The issue I faced was that in the bands, I was unable to express my passion for the synthesizer.While playing in club bands and doing our cover songs, I only used a couple different sounds, roades, strings, clav, etc. I loved playing in the cover bands, but in my studio, I always found myself getting lost messing around with my synthesizers, which is why it wasn’t until forty years later, I finally got the chance to express myself artistically.
I met Fred Vandenberg and he told me about his current project. Fred was looking to start a band with all original music, but he had one problem that he needed a keyboard player. Fred asked me if I would be interested in trying out for his newest venture; little did he know this is what I have been looking to do for the last forty years. The band would play all original music and I would be the one programming all the sounds for that music, which is the one thing I was never able to do in the cover bands. Fred sent me off with his CD and sheet music. I knew I had to be a part of this band after only the first minute into track 1.
Approaching 60 soon, I would love to be recognized for being a part of this new original musical venture. I have always been intimidated as a musician due to the fact that I am a self-taught musician, and I had never been classically trained to play at a collegiate level.
My wife and I have two children who became school teachers. They have filled our lives with happiness more than anyone could imagine. The only thing left is to create my own original music, and when this musical opportunity with Fred happens, my life would truly be complete.