I’m sitting here in my room at the South Point Casino and realized it’s been over a year since I last posted a blog. This past year of 2022 was extremely busy, both personally & professionally, & I could give you all kinds of reasons why I hadn’t posted anything, but they would just be lame excuses, so let me just say I’m sorry.
Needless to say, I had a great year of touring all around the country with Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone, I even performed a show, along with Billy Sullivan, in New Orleans with our old boss, Gary Lewis. That was a nice trip down Memory Lane! And I was also involved with some very cool things at home in Cleveland.
Last April, Billy Sullivan & I were invited to appear on a show at The Beachland Ballroom called “A Celebration of Cleveland Rock History with Deanna Adams & Ray Carr” where we each talked about our music careers, both collectively and individually.
In July I appeared on the podcast “Level Up Cleveland”, where Brian did a detailed interview with me on my entire history and career in music. You can watch it by selecting this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=avWoDdcBXJM
I performed in quite a few different shows around Cleveland with many of my musical friends throughout the summer: two separate shows at Cain Park, one with The Bill March Band & one with The Jeff Varga Band. And Billy Sullivan & I also played a couple of shows with the legendary drummer from The Raspberries, Jim Bonfanti at The Orchard in Port Clinton…all these shows were a blast!! Lastly, this past February, we performed in Frank Amato’s All-Star Jam at The Music Box. I usually don’t have the time to be involved in so many fun projects, so it was really nice being able to this past year.
On a very sad note, on January 2nd, Wes Coolbaugh, guitarist/vocalist from Love Affair passed away. We were just kids when we met, kids with big, big dreams. Together, we lived and exceeded all those dreams along with all the ups and downs that came with chasing dreams. We shared a deep bond & friendship that had lasted well over 50 years…we were family. A week ago, a celebration of life for Wes was held at Slim & Chubby’s. The place was packed & many of the people Wes worked with throughout his life performed, including a mini set by Love Affair. Even his youngest daughter, Karah, played a few songs. It was a wonderful tribute to a man that touched so many people’s lives. RIP Wes.
I just realized it’s been 20 years since I injured my right hand in a snow blower incident…my thumb was hanging by skin & my index & middle fingers were seriously damaged. At the time, I was told I might not play keyboards again. But, thanks to God Almighty, 8 weeks later I was back playing keyboards for a Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame benefit show. My fingers & thumb were still partially wrapped & I had to stick my hand in a bowl of ice between songs to calm the pain, but I got through the entire show. To say I’m grateful would be a huge understatement…thank you Jesus!
One more thing before I sign off: keep an eye out for a new, fun project I just got involved in…more to come on that soon!!