I’ve been lucky enough to perform with many groups over the years, including:
- Growing up in Redwood Falls, MN: The Jannilings (my Dad’s version of the “von Trapp Family Singers” – my brother and sister and I were just little kids, and for a long time we figured that all families must do stuff like dressing up and performing skits and songs in church basements, caroling for neighbors, and hosting piano recitals in our house); The Shadows (my first rock band!), and the almost-internationally-acclaimed “Good Time Singers” (we had pink shirts and sweet moves!)
- College years in Northfield, MN (St. Olaf College): General Eclectic, Groon, Ipso Facto (played trombone at several gigs with this fun Minnesota-based reggae band), and bass trombonist in the St. Olaf Band and other musical/theatrical groups on campus
- Late eighties / early nineties: The Bookkeepers, Pop’s Garage, Platonic Boom, and The Front (o.k. honestly, these were basically renamed versions of the same band, just trying to stay ahead of the authorities and such)
- Turn-of-the-century ‘til now: Montage, Kicked to the Curb (a.k.a. Two Feet from the Curb), Blue Rumor, Hicktown Mafia (occasional guest keyboardist), Creatures in the Parlor, and Sugar Buzz since we started way back in 2001!
I am eternally grateful for too many people and things to mention – but among them are:
- My parents, for being musical and for forcing a few years of piano lessons and then encouraging (and paying for) a few more, when it really started getting fun
- My teachers, not just of music but really all teachers – your patience and hard work may have seemed lost on some students, myself included, but those seeds you plant can and do eventually improve lives and the world, so thank you!
- Musician friends I’ve gotten to know over the years (including the amazingly talented and fun people who are or have been in Sugar Buzz!), with whom I’ve had the pleasure of jamming, joking, practicing, harmonizing, composing, recording, producing, performing, occasionally train-wrecking, and happily creating countless crazy memories, many of which seemed perfectly legal at the time
- College dorm bathrooms, which can be very dark at night but offer an acoustically fine environment to learn to play guitar without looking AND keep your corridor-mates wondering
- My family, friends, and fans, whose support and smiles just encourage me to do more music (and dabble in related things, such as the theremin . . . science + art!)
- Musicians who have inspired me (and countless others); some of my favorites include Elvis, The Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel, “Weird Al” Yankovic, Barenaked Ladies, Cat Stevens, Gary Numan, Yes, Elton John, Billy Joel, Alice Cooper, Bach, Devo, Pink Floyd, Mozart, Led Zeppelin, Vangelis, The Cars, Vince Guaraldi, Steely Dan, Beethoven, Aerosmith, Nickel Creek, Van Halen, The Carpenters, Rush, Roxette, and of course, the Soggy Bottom Boys
- Everyone who supports MUSIC & ENTERTAINMENT! Venues, music stores, agents, studios, festivals (Moondance Jam!), entertainers, promoters, sound & light ‘guys’ and all the folks who work at or come to places that make it happen (especially friends of Sugar Buzz!) – – y’all make the world a better place!
- Brevity (not a strength of mine, but a great development opportunity!)
Speaking of brevity, I will end with a final heartfelt THANKS to all of you who are part of the Sugar Buzz family! Thank you for reading all the way to the end here, and I sure hope to see you soon!