The first picture here was the earliest I could find- age 14 or so. The Bob Graham Quartet. Bill Waldmire, drums; Bob on saxophones and clarinet; Ben Drake on piano or guitar- and I was the shy young man holding the bass.We had a gig every Friday and Saturday at what was then The Flaming Pit(now Diamond Restaurant)in Town and Country shopping center, and that's where I got started learning to play jazz.
Less shy here, wearing a silly shirt that's fortunately obscured in the picture by whatever I was drinking(okay, it said Guitar Hero- I was having a bit of fun, as well as a bit of booze). Sometime in 1984, me at age 30, with Magnum Force. From left to right: me, Art Carey, Rebecca somebody, Marvin "Binky" Day, David Hoffman, Larry "Hubba" Nelson.
This one was around 1982. Looking strangely bewildered in the picture. Hmm. The Hinds Bros band, from left to right: Steve Hints Perry Zubeck, me, Jay Hinds, Jim Lanier, Tim Beck. Jay, sadly, is no longer with us. He was a fun guy and is missed.
This one is not a band pic but rather a band alum pic. The band was Scoundrel(1984-86 for me). From left to right: Eric Ongie(former guitarist), Michael somebody(former bassist), Ed Greig, me, Dean Hall, Richard Dennis. The zany guy in the middle got married on that day, in sunny LA.
The band was called Frankly Speaking, the year around 1994. From left to right: Steve Alexander, me, Frank Parker, Alicia Wilson, Johnny Thompson, Kevin Ellis. I used to joke about being the Affirmative Action hire of the band, being the only melanin-challenged individual there. We had a nice time playing together, and it was always relaxed enough that you could make a joke like that!Much appreciated.
An artier, film noir look in this band photo from the same period of time. The Frank Trompeter Quartet. From left to right: me, Frank, Tim Harte, Brian Pryor. We worked together a lot in the 90's, even got to play in Japan in 1995. Something that looks pretty good on a fella's permanent record..
This is Muzik Maker Band(yes, note the zany spelling), founded by keyboardist Evans Brittin. From left to right, Bob Smith, me, Steve Fowler, Steve Dykema, and Evans. Somewhere in Jacksonville, 90-something. I got that guitar(an Ibanez Artstar) from the owner of a music store in Jacksonville, one of two he brought down for me to try as he wanted to see me playing a Real Jazz Guitar-- can't recall his name, that memory Just In). Bob somebody. Helluva nice guy, and not just for bringing guitars for me to try.
Back to Muzik Maker for a minute. There was always a bit of a civil war going on, in that at least two of the guys wanted to do more contemporary pop stuff(Bob was a whiz at copping the exact sound and so forth of the records)and Evans wanted to keep with the old standards. I was with Evans on that one. Anyway, Muzik Maker Band. .
Bob Katt and the Missing Lynx, founded by the slightly wizened figure to my right(your left). This was a nice patch, for about a year, back in 2003 or so. From left to right: Brad Davis, Kevin Cox, me, Chaz Blythe. It was billed as a jazz band but really was more variety: R & B, some revamped pop things, a few Swing Era standards.
Kevin would be the first to tell you he was a blues player and not a jazzer, but whatever his declared style, he had a lot of technique- damn near flawless chops- and boatloads of imagination!
I had quartets for the longest time, and finally broke down and went to trio in 2006. From left to right: Bill Schlipf, me, Don Cochran. This is what I used to refer to as the SamBillandDon ensemble, which was my group- our group- from 2006(our first gig was on January 27th of that year- Mozart's birthday, for what it's worth) until Bill's death in 2013. The trio continues(as the SamTomandDon ensemble), but Bill is missed.
This motley crew(plus special guest Frank "Bruh" Parker on trumpet)is another group I've played with a lot over the years. The Dan Rivero Trio. From left to right: Dan, Frank, Wayne Carter, me. It's a lot of fun.
This is the most recent band pic of sorts I was in, taken just a few weeks ago. It was taken to promote a gig I did with them on 3 occasions last Fall. I'm not on that particular project, but I'm sure we'll work together again soon. From left to right: me, Gordon Cahvallo(percussion), Mark Rusillo(harmonica and vocals).
I hope you've enjoyed these band pix. As you can see, I've aged a bit in the meantime. It happens. Still getting these old bones out on occasion to make noise with other aging life-forms. Seems like a reasonable plan.