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Greg Robertson's WAKE / Bio

The story of WAKE really begins way back in the 1950's, when Greg Robertson's parents, Glen and Kay Washburn, were professional folk-singers. After meeting at MSU (actually MSC then)and taking the obligitory sojourn to Greenwich Village where they were 'discovered', they toured extensively for about ten years, most of them with their folk group, The Fretters. In late 1961 they broke up both musically and maritally, Greg and his unborn brother going with Kay. [ It would be nearly 50 years before Greg and his father met again.] Glen left the business after a couple more years solo and then ran a textbook distributorship. Selling his interest in that, he returned to college (MSU now) and , earning a degree in fine arts professored in that discipline at Parsons U in Iowa until being 'recruited' by the Australian Gov't to teach 'down under'. After that he went to Alaska and the New Mexico, where he resides today.
Meanwhile, Greg learned music from his mother who, although leaving the professional aspect of music behind certainly didn't leave music behind! She remarried to a prominent CPA who adopted the children, hence the Robertson surname, and became (surprise!) the director of the Junior Choir at their church, at which Stan Robertson was, of course, the treasuror. Greg was 'forced' to join the choir by his mom the director and he learned music theory there . .(yeah, Greg can 'technically' . . . 'read' music). Greg also joined in with mom when ever she was playing her guitar .. like around the campfire, etc., . . Greg doesn't remember learning his chords . . . By the time he was a teenager Greg was very adept at most aspects of playing the guitar and began to follow those whom he admired. By his 18th year he had written his first song, a very simple blues tune called , "My Blues" (which is on the current album) and had developed a few nice arrangements of his own favorites.
Then in 1984 his mother died. He was very lost and decided that he really needed to get into his music to follow in his mother's steps. Though she had left the business behind in the early 60's, by the early 70's she was back in, if only as a sideline; Greg's boss at his paper route as a teenager had his mom in his country/rock band. She was later in a dou with a gentlman whose wife, unfortunately, thought more than music was going on. Finally, toward the end of her far too short life , she , though having been a schoolteacher for the past decade, developed a very compatible musical relationship with a very gifted vocalist. Kay would play guitar accompaniment and sing harmony, harmony being her forte, being trained at Juilliard in voice as an alto, and that's where she was when she passed. Greg though he should 'do music' .. so he did. . .his first two concerts were in 1985 .. the first, an hour long noontime show at a local live theatre, where he worked as a ticket agent; the second, classical accompiniment to an art exhibit. Turning to his spiritual side, Greg then decided to study for the ministry and, although only completing about half the course, he went on to be the official and/or unofficial music minister for several churches he went on to attend.
By the mid-90's, he had landed in the Mid-Michigan area, living in St.John's, a small sub-urb of the Capital City, Lansing. He soon met Angie Chapko (now a noted spiritualist : www.angelachapko.com ) and together they developed the WAKE sound. For the first time, Greg felt really comfortable musically; he was simply the lead guitarist and that suited him fine! But two days after the music festival that served as the release event for the first WAKE album, the 9-11 tragedy occurred. This prompted Angie to follow her spiritualism side and after two more concerts, they nolonger performed musically together. Greg 'retreated' to Magdelena's Teahouse, a now defunct Cafe featuring local music in the open mic format. Greg played here on and off for the next few years.
By autumn of '06, though, he realized he had enough music to record an album and decided to do so. Utilizing the storied talents of local engineering wiz and prominet member of local group, Frountier Ruckus, John Krohn, sessions began for Unfulfilled Legacy. After two of these Greg suffered a heart attack and after a couple years of cardiologist visits underwent open heart surgery. But losing so much time didn't shut down the inspiration; By 2010 he realized he had much more music then he had recorded, the sessions being very few but the inspirations many!
After a bit of re-aligning things, the structure for the new album became evident to Greg; who at first wasn't sure what to include and what to put off until the next one.
Greg spends most of his time as a busker in East Lansing and, although he has no management or agency, this exposure is enough to land him several 'inside gigs' a year.

General Info

Band Members
Angie Chapko, founder,inspiration; Greg Robertson, founder,instrumentation.
Artist Name
Greg Robertson's WAKE
Home Page
Active Since
Rock / folk/blues / gospel

Contact Info

Lansing, MI

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