Dino Colarocco here! I actually started playing bass by mistake. I always wanted to be a drummer at heart. I grew up listening to my dads’ oldies, and later became a hard rock lover! I first picked up the bass in 1979, and the first song I learned was”Good Times Roll” by the Cars. My friend wanted his bass back, (I had borrowed it) and I never touched another one until 1987. That’s when I started playing to all those classic Rush, Kansas, and Styx albums. My first band was the Zeds, and DAMN we were bad. No I mean BAD!! I’ll never forget our first gig, in our living room, and afterwards a guy at the party came up to me and said, “You’ve got a great voice, but you better give up the bass!!” I was to drunk then to care, but kept plugging away until I only made a dozen or so mistakes during a song. During the next few years, I played in a number of bands, the first of which was “Damn Str8”. We were booked at Stevie T’s regularly, (before it was a go-go joint) and really had a lot of fun. When “Damn Str8” disbanded, I got a call from the drummer, saying that a friend of his, Bones, was interested in starting a band. I said, “Cool”, and that’s when I first met Big Joe Leming. DAMN that boy can sing!! We started a band called “The Edge”, and we were hot. We got quite a few gigs, and with Joey’s ideas lyrically & musically, and Tim’s talent, we had quite a few great originals. Well, all good things must end, so “The Edge” broke up, and I joined a band known as “Liquid Factor”. This is where I met my longtime friend Mike Matisa. More about him later! They turned me on to the Alternative style, and we went strong for about 3 years. Somewhere in the 3rd year, I got a call from Bo Child, the original Herd of Blues bassist, and he asked if I could fill in for him on a gig he couldn’t make. I said I’d love to. Now I’d been out to see these guys a few times and although they were some talented musicians, the stuff bored me to listen to. Well listening to, and playing are 2 mighty different things!! As a practice for the gig I was to fill in for, they asked me to come out to Havana to do a set with them. I was nervous as hell, but I nailed it!! Havana was ROCKIN’!! People were dancing, singing and groovin’ to the music!! I can’t remember having so much fun at a gig before!! The next day reality sunk in, and as dedicated as Bo was, I figured the best chance I had to play with them again was just as a sub. About a year or so later, I get a call from Big Joe telling me Bo is leaving, and if I want it, I’m in! I was ecstatic!! The “Herd” lasted 7 years after that and after tons of gigs & 2 original CD’s, we called it quits.
Now, getting back to Mike Matisa. We met in the Liquid Factor days, and at about this time he called me and wanted to know if I wanted to do some acoustic work with him. He had written quite a few songs and I played bass on them. He got the idea of going out and playing as an acoustic duo and I was all for it! We are still playing in the Trenton, NJ area at places like Katmandu, The Cellar at the Hamilton Manor and Bills Olde Tavern in Mercerville. Check out Mike’s website at www.mikematisa.com
In September of 2009, I got a call from a friend and neighbor, Dave McTamney who was in a classic rock cover band called DarkWater. They were looking for a bass player. I was ready to get back into a full band situation so I joined DarkWater and we had a steady stream of gigs at the Sticky Wicket for the past year, as well as playing parties, benefits, and other special events. Check them out at www.myspace.com/1darkwater
In June 2010, I got a call from a co-worker of my wife. Her name is Grace Little, and she goes by the Amazin’ Grace. She fronts “GLB” or the Grace Little Band. These guys are the hottest, jazz, R&B, pop, funk, soul, reggae just about anything you can imagine band in the tri state area!! Now of course I had listened to this type of music but I have never played it before. She wanted to know if I could fill in for her bass player for a gig they had in Philadelphia. It was the grand re-opening of TSOP studios or The Sound of Philadelphia. I had a bout a week or so to learn 10 songs most of which I had heard before, but never played. WOW!! That was a gig I will never forget! I was a bit nervous as we did our sound check, and I appeared to have stage fright because I couldn’t get the songs in my head. I can remember a few of the band members looking over at me and saying ut-oh….this is gonna be good….NOT!!! When it was Showtime though, I did it!! I made a few mistakes and even played one song a step up from where the band played it but they improvised and we got through it!! I actually did a fine job and got many compliments after the show. Check them out at http://www.theglbband.com/
My biggest thrill to date was opening up for Robin Trower at Club Bene’. We had practically no room to set up, the management told us, NOT to interact with Robin Trower, or his band in any way. We were a little nervous when we started our first tune, “Funky Stash”, but as the song progressed we could see the people were digging it. After we hit the last note, the rush of cheers and applause blew me away! I’ll never forget that feeling as long as I live! We kicked ass the rest of the set!
OK, sick of reading stories? I’ll tell you about my equipment. My first bass was a JB Player. It’s basically a Mexican copy of the Fender P. Plays great, sounds great, but the damn thing is too heavy!! I bought a Carvin LB70 a few years back, and that’s been my main axe since. I play through a Hartke Combo, which gives me a bright punchy tone, and fills just about every room we play.