A Bit of Ancient History….
Starting in the 1970’s, I worked for years in Chicago in various capacities…nightclubs, cabarets, theatre, churches, schools, and private instruction.
Some of my favorite Chicago gigs were with my jazz trio...Jim Cox (bass) and Nick Kitsos (drums) at Evanston SPACE or Davenport’s Cabaret.
From 2006-2012, I played piano with The Sons of The Never Wrong…a wildly popular trio with a huge following and deep Chicago roots. Their songs were soul-stirring, and their stage antics, hilarious. That was big fun.
Speaking of hilarious…
For several years I filled in for Second City’s famed jazz pianist Fred Kaz, and traveled with the comedy club’s touring company. I have fond memories of performing water ballet in hotel pools with George Wendt, and watching Jim Belushi moon me from offstage just before his entrance.
Before many of their founding members left Chicago to become movie stars, I worked with Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre Company. “Waiting For Lefty” with John Malcovich and Joan Allen and the company’s production of The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, to name a few. We moved Little Voice to an exciting, but brief run on Broadway.
I also worked as the featured singer with Chicago’s noted composer and pianist, Rokko Jans…at Nick’s Fish House and other Midwest venues throughout the 1980’s and 90’s.
My first CD of original music was released around 1998. “The Lost Art of Love” received two Achievement Awards from Billboard Magazine’s Songwriting Contest. My second effort…“Wait 'Til Midnight Ends” is my hands-down favorite. No awards, but then, I never submitted any of the tracks, as I saw the music industry going down the dark road that is now so obvious to anyone paying attention.
Teaching gigs included music theory at the Douglas Park Conservatory under the Education Outreach arm of the Ravinia Music Festival…and private piano and voice classes as well as group vocal studies at the Old Town School of Folk Music.
I was featured in two books about Chicago…”My Kind of Sound” by Steve Krakow…and “The Chicago Music Scene” by Dean Milano...and that's my voice coming out of the juke box in David Mamet's cult hit movie, House of Games (1987).
There’s more…but I must protect the innocent, as well as the guilty…including myself…so I’ll stop there.