Years went by, and Steve didn’t pick up a guitar, play his keyboards or his treasured accordions. Music no longer appealed to him. Then one day a friend who had quit his own blossoming music career to become a Christian minister asked Steve if he would like to play his accordion at a local blues jam at the Fenix in San Rafael.
“No way”, Steve said. ” I haven’t played in a while.” But the friend was very persuasive. Steve had practiced for the performance, but no one told him what songs he would be playing. The night of the gig Steve was called from back stage and told by his friend to just wing it.
“You can take the second lead,” he said. It was a song called “Little Wing” by Jimi Hendrix. Fortunately it was in a good accordion key, and Steve listened to the blistering guitar solo by his friend who then turned and said, “Ok, Steve, go man go.” Steve nervously stepped up to the mike and just started playing. The sound of the accordion filled the air, and Steve froze. Fortunately his fingers started taking over, and the pent up passion just poured out.
At the end of the song the audience clapped vigorously, and Steve was asked to play another song. From then on he would be asked to play at that venue featuring his accordion again and again. That regular appearance at the Fenix in San Rafael led to several bands asking him to play with them.
One of the bands was Walt the Dog, a blues and pure rock and roll band. Steve was playing accordion sharing solos with Walt and singing occasionally. Steve then played keys with Eddie and the Fog, a Blues Brothers horn based blues band. Later that band reformed to become The Fog, a hard rock and roll band, which became quite popular around Petaluma, CA.
Steve also played accordion and keys with a vocally heavy band called Just Friends who were popular in West Marin and Bolinas. And he also played guitar in a 3 person band that played jazz standards and light rock. Much of their music was for free to audiences and to spiritually inspire others. Steve also sang lead with 3 other lead singers in a 13 piece horn based band called the Ultimate Garage Band, a rhythm and blues and pop band. Again the music was free for all to hear and played benefits for many good causes… (One more part to come)