New Jersey Stage 2017: Issue 5 - Page 34

ers - a band like Creedence or the Beatles or the Stones - that was our thing. We wrote our first songs and made an album in our family’s living room when we were like 9 or 10 years old. That was the dream and we did it. We played local talent shows and dances and stuff in Jersey. When we got old enough we left home and went to the city. Once we got to New York it was like ‘Oh shit, we’ve got to make a living!’ I could play guitar for other people so I began putting my name out there. I’d do ses- sions and started going out - it was way before cell phones or beepers. I’d just go out with my guitar, check my answering machine with quarters at pay phones all day to see if anyone was calling for a session. And I’d run from one session to another; fifty bucks here, hundred bucks there. I did that for a bunch of years. My brother had joined a NJ STAGE 2017 - Vol. 4 No. 5 new version of Blood, Sweat & Tears in the 80s. It was all young guys, fresh out of school. The only original guy was the singer. He pulled me into that. The gui- tar player was sick one day and John said, “Want to do a gig?” He sent me a cassette tape and some charts - no rehearsal. I learned it on the plane on the way down to Miami. That’s when I realized I’m a pretty quick study at learning other people’s shit. After that I played with Glen Burtnik, Jill Jones (singer in Prince’s band The Revolution), BushRock (a band with Delmar Brown who played with Sting). It was like a lot of stuff going on, but not one big band to hand my hat on so to speak. We had this blues band called The Hudson River Rats and we would play every Wednesday night in 1988 or so at the ACME Bar & Grill in East Village. All kinds of people came down INDEX NEXT ARTICLE 34