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I am usually asked, “what instrument do you play?”, when someone learns I'm a musician. I am so glad to have lived over a time where I learned to play "the studio". From the 60's when I would take dad's Revere recorder and cover the erase head to do sound-on-sound dubbing of voices... on to my first digital workstation in the 80s, I've loved creating recordings. Mastering sound production does allow me to do things I can't do live, but so what? For me the song and the sound are one, no matter how you get there.
So, welcome to BillM's Semi-Pop-Jazz-Demographic. Playing most of the parts from keys and drums. Thanks to my piano teacher and guru, Guy Arrostuto, a true bay area legendary jazz and rockin' dude. Like he says, "your my best piano student... who's a drummer. Ha!
Of course my favorite real life influences range from the Indiana boys who covered everything from soul & psychedelic with me in junior & sr. high school bands. And my road days with the rockin' boogie of Peddler band that gave me my first real studio and major label experiences. As I went into radio & TV engineering & production that led to having my own studio in South Bend, where there are lots of great friends in the media, ad and music community I owed my livelihood to.
I partnered with the most powerful believer I have known, Doug Thiesen. We developed a fantastic music publishing catalog and had it played in movies like Pelican Brief, Wyatt Earp, TV shows, commercials and programs all over the US. I remember one jazz cat came into the control from the studio where Doug was conducting an arrangement and asked, “what is it about your sessions, man”? I replied that guy in there brings the spirit of the Lord for all of us to thrive on just by being who he is. So, that's how lucky I am. That company led me to work with many great players, like Max Bennett with Tom Scott & Joe Sample. Tom Grant, who is a Portland icon on piano and Ric Flauding world class arranger and guitarist, recorded songs for the catalog. Larry Moore, an excellent arranger from Milwaukee, co-produced some commercial releases with us. And now I get to meet all kinds of wonderful music people by my position with Starin, a company that promotes and distributes music, sound and video gear.
Within the songs you might hear a combination of these great artitst as influences, which gives me a chance to keep the namedropping going: Todd Rundgren, Stevie Winwood, Joe Jackson, Pat Metheny, Brian Wilson, Donald Fagen & the Dan, Joni Mitchell, Max Bennett, Booker T, Tom Grant, Neil Larsen, Al Kooper, Brian Auger, Michael Franks, Mose Allison, Martin Mull, Thomas Dolby, Patti Austin, Ira Stein &; Russel Walder, 4Him, David Gray, A Show of Hands, Angelo Rakhelino, Chubby Cheker, The Rippingtons, Ar Rahaman, Basia, Hall &; Oates, Wilson Picket, Loul Rawls, Anthony Newley, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Andy Pratt, David Benoit, Tears for Fears, Ric Flauding, Roger Scott Craig, Brent Bourgeois, Cirque Du Soleil, John Mayer, Craig Armstrong, Shawn Colvin, Tom Coster, Jon Lucien, Flim & the BBs, Keb Mo, Penquin Cafe Orchestra, Stevie Wonder, Art of Noise, Billy Joel, Aaron Copeland, Procol Harum.