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...what about me...

    Born in 1955 in Queens, NY, I grew up with great music all around me. There was always Beethoven, Satchmo, Sinatra, Django, Brubeck etc. on the record player. I remember sitting on the front porch with my brother's guitar and my friend Kerry, playing along with her Beatle 45s. We were ten years old. I played a harmonica concert to the sixth grade, took tap dance lessons for a few years, commandeered my brothers guitar, played viola in the Junior H.S. orchestra, and had several garage bands. 

    Then at 23, after an especially tumultuous teen-age period, the EST training, my first semi- professional rock band, and a couple of enlightening years at a community college, I landed at Berklee College of Music studying bass inspired by Jaco Pastorius. I graduated in 1982 and played professionally with John Pizzarelli Jr and other jazz, Top 40, and rock bands doing weddings parties and clubs. I also simultaneously participated with the EST organization for about fifteen years as an assistant and participant. In the early 80's I connected deeply with Neem Karoli Baba and Alan Watts.

    I formed Franz Band in 1985 and performed my original rock music for three years around Boston. I studied privately with the great teacher Charlie Banacos for several months during that period. I always payed most of the bills as a carpenter, having learned early on that relying on the music to pay the bills was a mistake. My inner artist was too fussy to be playing Boogie Oogie Oogie night after night for dough. I needed to keep my day job and somehow not let the music become just a hobby. This was a narrow, difficult path to walk, but I felt successful and authentic in the effort. 

    I've participated with the Dances of Universal Peace deeply since 1990 and have attended week long "Sufi" camps where music, meditation and spiritual orientation are the themes. Kirtan (chanting) was a natural outgrowth of my participation with the D.U.P. and has become my primary focus. But for ten years I've played kirtan and have played and toured with several notable kirtan artists, Dave Stringer, Girish, David Newman, Donna DeLory and Sat Kartar among them. In 2012 I began leading my own kirtans. 

    Facilitating spiritual experience and healings is a passion for me. I even played for 10 or so years in  various Christian church bands though I was born to Jewish parents. :)

    In 2001 I came to the realization (again) that I only wanted to play God’s music. What that boils down to is that the motive for opening my case and strapping on my instrument has to come from the heart and express that deep desire to hear and feel a beautiful sound. I believe my commitment is largely responsible for the gift of a project I received called "Bounced Off Water", a musical I wrote in 2002. It's a story of salvation through the heart. I worked doggedly on it for three years, driven to get it funded and produced. It still has yet to reach the stage... Sometimes it's just about the process, not the outcome.

    In 1991 I began a training that continued for three years in massage and theraputic bodywork and taught massage at two schools in Denver as I maintained a thin connection to my music. During this time I practiced yoga and Tai Chi and did most of an Iyengar teachers training. 

 

 

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