Over 50 years ago (closer to 60 years), I got my first membership in the musicians union, signed by Jimmy Petrillo, himself. I was technically a good musician and made some decent money playing as a side man with dance bands with more in common with Benny Goodman and Tommy Dorsey than the Beatles, but I had no "soul" for the playing end of the business and gravitated to booking bands for side money when I was in college. I have nephews, nieces, and cousins who still play a lot, most with volunteer community orchestras as well as some weekend gigs for pay while holding down day jobs. One nephew teaches orchestra in an inner city school and plays with his own band on weekends. His band has an upcoming gig at Chicago's Hard Rock Cafe.
I can not remember a time in my life when I didn't love music. I started playing cornet in grade school band when I was 9 years old, played through junior high school, then quit when I got to high school to pursue athletics (I did play trumpet again in the university band in college). My best friend started playing guitar in high school and talked me into buying a bass in 1982. We put a band together, and 35 years later we still play together. In those years, I've taught myself to play a few more instruments ... 13-ish in all, I think: guitar, bass, drums, piano, organ, violin, viola, cello, double bass, trumpet, trombone, recorder, and shakuhachi. And, I sing.
I've played bass in a variety of rock bands over the years, mostly what's now considered classic rock. Sometimes, I play keyboards too (that confounded Geddy Lee influence). These days, I've pretty much retired from the BarStar scene. Just lost interest in that world. I played for a few years with a Sammy Hagar tribute band, but increasing hearing loss and tinnitus convinced me to bow out of that, too. I do still play occasionally with a couple friends in an acoustic rock trio (Happy Little Trees), where my bass and cello accompany two acoustic guitars and three-part harmonies.
Outside of that, everything I do now is in my home studio.
- I'm trying to put the finishing touches on a heavy funk album, on which I play guitar, bass, drums, and keyboards.
- Next is a progressive rock epic I'm planning to span over several albums, on which I'll also play everything.
- I have written arrangements for string quartet of the first 22 (so far, of 150) keyboard sonatas of Antonio Soler, and plan to record and release them.
- Then there is also an atmospheric music project that's been floating around in my head for years, mostly electronic keyboards and electric cello.
... all while I'm in the middle of a full house remodeling project.
I've also been thinking about performing a solo tribute to Frank Sinatra's music, with me playing guitar and singing along to recorded bass and drum tracks (some of which are already programmed). Not sure where or when I'm going to squeeze that in, though.
I keep myself busy. Music has always been a major part of my life.
I've been playing guitar since 1963. I played professionally for a long time, but stopped in the mid 80's. I play for my own enjoyment, now. My kids gave me a lap steel for Christmas, so I'm teaching myself playing it in C6th tuning.
I'm a band leader and play several instruments but guitar is my main axe, in college I was a trumpet player. I've done home recording for a long time as well. I used to teach full time in private studios but there came a time when I needed more regular hours and benefits. I'm a worship leader as well so it's nice to be able to do all of that on a regular basis still.