Yes, I love music ... I love listening ... I love singing ... I love playing ... I love music!!!!! Strange as it may seem, I do play the piano same as any other novice, amateur, dreamer of becoming a fabulous jazz player that will never happen in a million years! lol lol And same with singing ... I sing same as any other novice, amateur, dreamer of becoming a fabulous jazz singer that will never happen in a million years! lol lol But just the same, I love playing and singing. So there. And I do it for my own enjoyment in my home these days.
But the great and wonderful part of it all is that I do get to listen to music, am able to sometimes see and hear some of the wonderful talents of our age and time ... playing and singing ... yes!!! And I have known many musicians and several of them are still friends who are among those wonderful talents, some very successful, some not as successful as the top musicians of the time, but nonetheless just as talented.
I'm thinking tonite of a few closer to home ... Marianne Lindstrom and her daughter Allison Lindstrom - terrific singers! Dynamite singers. My dear friend who is no longer with us - A. Paul Bergen, the best of the best basso talents! My retired piano maestro - Don Dominguez, a dear friend and music partner who I just spoke to yesterday.
And then there are those in the music world who I was honored to have kept company with on the Central Coast of Calif. - so many of them, too many to mention ... this was when I was running the PPP Cafe and producing five nites of music every week. That was such a wonderful time for me. Heaven, actually. If it weren't for the personal stress and peripheral troubles at the time, those would have been the best years of my life. It ran a close second to my time in Santa Monica during the '80s and '90s.
Now I mean to tell you ... the '80s and the '90s were the days to remember - my L.A. days. I have to say this and I mean it, those were my glorious forties and fifties. Loved every minute of it. What a time I had, and music was my mainstay. Wow! What memories! We would hit all the piano bars, the jazz clubs, the band clubs, even rock bands believe it or not. I had friends in all genres. What a world we lived in! And I never did drugs, how about them apples? lol lol
Before the L.A. days were the gospel music days. Yes, my sister and I were part of a gospel trio, we had a drummer, bass player and a piano player. We traveled to churches and conferences to sing in California. Those were some very good times, yes indeed. My sister would like to forget it, lol lol, but not me. I loved it.
When we were teenagers in Wasco CA, we sang in the church choir with my dad. All three of us. Mary was soprano, I was alto, Daddy was tenor. We rehearsed every Thursday nite, sang every Sunday. Highlights of my weeks. I was also in the school choir and played the tenor sax in the marching band - one heavy heavy horn! And this was around the time we watched Cousin Herb every night at 6 p.m. on local TV, when Merle Haggard, Billy Mize, Jelly Roll Sanders, Buck Owens, and all the rest of them were local yocals in Bakersfield, before they really hit the bigtime in country music. They were all performing at the Blackboard, a dive just outside Bakersfield on Union, the old highway, before 99 came into being.
Back before I was a teenager, in the '40s, when we had our first television, on Saturday nights I'd watch 'Hit Parade', one of the few TV programs that were on in those years. At the time my dad and granpa owned and ran the local grocery and I was in charge of the magazines and comic books ... keeping them stocked and straightened. I'd take home a copy of the previous month's 'Song Hits' magazine every time a new one came in, and I'd learn all the lyrics so I could sing with Dorothy Collins, Gisele MacKenzie, Russell Arms, and Snooky Lanson every Saturday night. Gisele was my favorite. I liked the sound of her lower, smooth range.
So ... my musicality ... thank goodness I have such good memories to pull out and relive whenever I want in this golden age.
Obviously I'm doing that tonite. And it feels good!