It Starts at the Beginning – Childhood, Europe, & entering the Reggae business – All Based around Music!
January 29, 2008 – Miami, Florida
Greetings and welcome to my blog. It’s hard to believe that it’s been 25 years since the first Reggae Report was printed. In 1983, Michael “Mikey Zappow” Williams and I decided it was time to spread the word–and music. So a one-page newsletter, filled with local and JA news and upcoming and past events, was hand-delivered to Reggae record shops and West Indian restaurants throughout Miami and Ft. Lauderdale. Oh, we got the looks…Mikey-famous as the band leader and bass player of Zap Pow and writer and performer of “This is Reggae Music,” and me, a nice Italian girl from Ohio (via Miami and Europe) who worked for Marley’s manager Don Taylor and producer Joe Gibbs, fresh from directing a major 4-day Reggae festival with my good friend and mentor Clint O’Neil, armed with a tape recorder, camera, and tenacity — and people looked at us like we had two heads… well, actually we did… two smiling, happy heads working together for one goal, one objective — to tell the world about Reggae music. But I don’t want to get ahead of myself here. Next time, I’ll start at the beginning…the first time I ever heard the one drop, the bass thump, and the message music that touched my soul and heart forever. Irie!
March 14, 2008 – Miami, Florida
Growing up in a musical family, I was surrounded by music. I thought it was quite normal to have a live band playing in the dining room every week. My father, a musician since youth, had been playing music with his father and brothers for many years, until World War II separated them, and then everything changed. Fast forward to his return, getting married, having kids, working in the steel mill, but his love for music and performing never changed. He formed a band with some friends, playing guitar and mandolin, did some singing, and it really was the only time I would see him happy. I found it made me happy too. So I always hung around, watching, learning, and discovering that music was a source of happiness…not only for me, but for those guys who played, and for the people who listened and danced. I never had the opportunity to learn to play an instrument, but I knew I was a musician at heart…and soul. Continue reading