"The story for me
begins in Lubbock Texas. I had the dubious honor of being basically raised in my father’s recording studio. Mom and Dad are both accomplished musicians. Dad got his start playing saxophone and writing horn charts for Norman Petty, the producer engineer mastermind behind Buddy Holly’s music. Petty gave dad a tape machine and some other recording equipment to help him get his own studio off the ground. Mom is an effortless singer and a brilliant songwriter. She was a child prodigy and a regular on local TV variety shows. It’s no surprise that my two siblings and I all grew up to be musicians as well.
Despite my growing up in the country music stronghold of Texas, it was jazz music that really inspired me to want to play. First it was saxophone. I started playing gigs and shows around town when I was 15. At 18 I bought an old Hammond organ off the want ads and a true obsession ensued. There was always something about the sound of the organ that just felt like it was my voice. Like it was a tool I could use to say something I needed to say.
The dream was always to go to New York and study jazz with the legends. But I had no money, I didn’t know how I could make it happen. My break came when Stephen Stills heard me play and invited me to join his touring group. Working for Stephen was like a finishing school in and of itself. After the first summer tour with Stills, I rented an apartment in Brooklyn sight unseen, packed up my stuff and left Lubbock.
Wasn’t sure exactly how to make ends meet in the city but my string of luck soon continued when Stephen brought me on board for a run of Crosby, Stills and Nash dates in Australia. It was the beginning of whole new chapter for me. The tour went well and soon after, another tour, and then another. It turned into nearly 10 years of touring before I knew it. In between tours I was playing, studying and meeting new friends in New York. So not only was I ‘living the dream’ in the city I’d always wanted to live in, I was also getting to see the whole world with CSN. Amazing!
The years since moving to New York have definitely brought quite a few amazing experiences to say the least. Just as I hoped, I’ve gotten to meet and play with so many phenomenal musicians and artists. But what I’ve learned from these experiences is more than I could’ve ever imagined. For me, the dream is alive and well and tomorrow is beckoning."