Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Beginning

In 1974, soon to turn 20 years old, I met Paul Robi at a small get together at a close friend’s house. I was told that there would be some people there that could help me with getting started in the professional world of music/show business.

After becoming very bored at this so called party with about eight people there, it seemed like I had been there all night. One of these all so important people turned out to be an older woman who sat talking about her son who owned a recording studio; but he was not there. Actually, everybody was old enough to be my parent.

Then suddenly just before I got up to leave, in walks this guy with a great smile and a hearty laugh. He walked right up to me as I was strumming on my buddy’s nylon sting guitar. He said to me "can you play that guitar, or are you just holding on to it."

He asked me for the guitar and started playing a great tune by the Stylistics called “You Make Me Feel Brand New” with beginner type chords that you learn from the back of a comic book (play guitar in one month or money back). I laughed and thought he should get his money back!

He played very simple but when I heard his voice I thought, "Oh my God!" I couldn’t believe I was standing no less than two feet from this guy who sounded like Tom Jones or Billy Eckstine. I told him to let me play the guitar and for him to sing the lower part while I sang the high part. We literally tore the song up! When I came in with the high falsetto part I saw this big smile come over his face. We finished and he said "boy you sing your butt off, and I love your guitar playing."

That's how I met Paul Robi.

This is one of The Platters' very first recordings


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    Mike Shadowen

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