On May 4, 1978 at an evening High School Mixer in Mobile, Alabama, at the ripe old age of 16 I first heard the music of Dan Fogelberg. There is no way I could have known that night what an effect this event would have on my music, my spirit and my path of life. From the very first song I heard ( There's A Place In The World For A Gambler ) I felt like I had been hit by a ton of bricks. I promptly wondered, "Why have I not heard this mans music before?" I immediately took it upon myself to absorb every lyric, note and passage of every piece of music Mr. Fogelberg had released up to that point. I am still as much a fan today as I was then and Dan's music is never far from my life, lips and guitar. Seven years ago today we lost an artist who touched many souls, hearts and lives. Not only because of his extreme God given talent, but because he stayed true to himself. In an industry that promotes shallow, mediocre and disposable art as genius, Dan Fogelberg dug deep into his own life experiences and gave us timeless music we all could relate too. Sometimes you had to think and sometimes it was painful. But it was real. Unfortunately, that kept some people away. He studied, read and nurtured his intellect, and his soul. And although he was a very private man, he was not afraid to bare his heart for the world to see. In doing so he gave us art in the medium of pop music. Something that is rare, if not completely non existent today. Something that will live on. Dan was a great influence on my music, my life and my journey. And he is still greatly missed. Many thanks to Jean Fogelberg for all the recent work she has put into updating Dan's website. Jeff Pike December 16, 2014 www.danfogelberg.com
Guest Blog By Kathy Mullen of Mullen Music Management Sometimes there can be advantages of having a list of passwords which provide an opportunity to share a thought or two. It might have been a bit of a bold move, but that “inner voice” in me strongly suggested that I take a moment to share a bit of Jeff Pike that it might be difficult for him to share about himself. After all, you never quite see yourself the way others do. As you can see the inner voice won. I know there are many of you who are reading this who have known Jeff Pike for 10, 20, 30 years or more. I sheepishly come in with just 2 years now of knowing Jeff and his music. I realize that I will be gone long before I can ever catch up to the majority of close friends and fans who have shared his life and career with him. Seeing the adoration of so many has taught me incredible admiration for all of the years, time and money many of you have put into attending Jeff’s gigs, purchasing CD’s, showing support of his music and just being there when he needed any one of you for any number of reasons. When I first met Jeff, he suggested I check out his website to learn more about him. In doing so I discovered that some of the interviews and radio specials were a few years old. But what great information and history about Jeff and his music I found by taking the time to listen. It opened up a door to the seeming less never ending well of musical information and history that Jeff holds within him. There is no denying that Jeff is true to his craft and absorbs every opportunity to learn, grow and improve. I challenge anyone of you to match Jeff on his knowledge of popular musical history. I recall a story of him “holding court” at lunch time with his music knowledge – beating out anyone who tried to compete with him. Small pieces of this aspect of his musical passion come out through his Vinyl reviews which he produces and shares on his Facebook page (www.facebook.com/therealjeffpike.) Not surprisingly he knows the stories behind most, if not all of the music media that he owns. From time to time he’ll let me borrow a stack of DVD’s of various performers as he studies stage performance. While I enjoy so much of what he shares with the world my recent favorite are his collection of 45 RPM records that he has started to post on YouTube. The nostalgia of hearing the sound of the needle hitting the record and start playing before the music, well, it has a more effective way of transporting me back in time than when I hear the same song on a CD. Anyway, the list goes on and on. Believe me when I say, that capturing the pieces of Jeff with which to share with you via his website, YouTube, Facebook, CD’s and performances is a never ending task. I have learned so much from Jeff. I have learned about his family, life, music, fans, long lasting friendships, addiction, recovery, God, and myself. I have learned about the importance of having faith and trust in yourself and not giving up even in the midst of your darkest days. Finding the courage to unlock your own passions and dreams and not letting fear of the unknown stop you. Along with the importance of honesty and communication, one of the biggest lessons Jeff has taught me is that of personal and professional patience. His gifts come in many different forms and he has many to share with each of us. He cares deeply about everyone in his life and has a lot to give. How much you walk away with is truly up to you. Listening to Jeff’s music, watching his performances, reading his reviews, listening to his 45’s, checking out his YouTube videos and following his Facebook pages, you will find one dynamic compassionate man who is pursuing his dreams and passions with those around him, sharing his story with the world in hopes of making a difference through his own experiences. Kathy Mullen March 10, 2014 Mullen Music Management
Well, I am sitting here today, snowbound in my domicile of residence in Lawrenceville, Georgia. While staring out the window just now at the white stillness, a long awaited peace came over me. Here is what caused it. Through years of hope and positive thinking I have finally given up. I finally consent to the reality and accept the fact that the state of Georgia will never be prepared for snowfall. Regardless of how much or how little, it really is quite laughable. But be that as it may, I suppose that I should not complain too loud for there is still a bit of childhood fun that my soul receives from being “snowed in.” I do believe though it is only a feeling that we Southerners, who are not blessed (or cursed) with snow on a regular basis, feel and occasionally enjoy. So with that said, and having a little more free time on my hands today than originally intended, I thought I would just update you a little on what has been going on this month in my world. First, I would like to share with you the fact that I am still reelin’ and rockin’ from attending the 2014 Annual APAP Convention in New York City earlier this month. My manager, Kathy Mullen and I were up there in the thick of it for 4 days. We met so many people, made some really useful contacts and saw some tremendous showcases. It was our first time attending this annual worldwide convention and I must say we were awed and overwhelmed. It was a tremendous experience and I hope that we have the chance to be a part of it next year. On another note but a related one, I am just now learning how to use Word Press and am having some problems with it. This is why I have not had a lot of updated material here on JeffPike.com since launching the new website recently. But when I do, I will have a lot of recent pictures from the convention posted for you to enjoy. Speaking of the website, (www.jeffpike.com) here is a little more current information that may be useful for you. While the main purpose of this website is to promote my original work there will also be a small part of it that I will use to promote cover gigs. (Restaurants, clubs, corporate work, private parties, etc.) Today I posted a quick impromptu promotional video that I recorded at Bahama Breeze this past week. It came out a lot better than I thought it would so I put it up on the video page for you to enjoy. Feel free to pass it along to anyone you know who books entertainment, for as you may or may not know, I am always looking for work and networking is never done. Thank you for your time today, but before you leave be sure to sign up for my mailing list, read my blogs and check out my concert calendar. ( Assuming of course that you are snowed in and have a lot of time on your hands today ) Anyway, I hope to see you on the road (or in the snow) sometime soon! If you are on the road, travel safe. If you are at home, lounge aggressively. Jeff Pike January 29, 2014
I was very saddened to hear about the passing of Dave Madden yesterday. Most people who are familiar with Dave Madden remember him best as the stressed out and lovable manager of The Partridge Family, a television series about a fictitious Pop Group starring David Cassidy and Shirley Jones which ran from 1970-1974. Through all of the days of my youth, the music of David Cassidy and The Partridge Family were an enormous and moving influence on me, my music and my spirit. They were in fact, a very large part of why I chose my career as a musician. Those who are very familiar with my life and my original music are aware of the enormous amount of real estate the music of David Cassidy and The Partridge Family hold in my heart. For various reasons I have been badgered about this by many people for my entire adult life. In response, I wish it to be known that I am of the mindset that sometimes real talent gets a stereotypical bad rap for all the wrong reasons. More often than not artists in this situation are never given the respect they are due. I have always felt that way about David Cassidy. As for Dave Madden, his character of Reuben Kincaid and the relationship he shared with Danny Partridge ( played by Danny Bonoduce ) was a very large part of the comedic humor of the show. He was a fine actor, a kind and good man, and a wonderful comedian. He might not have been the best fictitious agent in the world, but he was warm, loving and hilarious. It is funny to think back on my childhood when I used to watch The Partridge Family and believe that what Reuben and The Partridge Family went through was how show business really worked. Today, after being in the business for 30 years, what a joyous and jaded laugh I get out of that. I occasionally scratch my head in disbelief when I realize how long ago that was. My how life, society, culture, innocence, youth, the world and music have changed since 1970 was a new year. I am constantly reminded by my girlfriend on how I spend too much time looking back and that I should only look forward. I know she is right, but on days like today I find myself thinking back with concentration and energy. What I would not give to go back to those times – if only for a day – a good day. A day where music, youth, innocence and hope filled my world; where days of wonder and imagination would always leave a huge smile on my face and a strong dream in my heart. A good bit of my youth went with Dave yesterday. He was the first Partridge to leave us. Come on Get Happy? No, not today…in time. That vacant seat on the bus looks pretty lonely….My condolences to the Madden family, Danny Bonaduce, David Cassidy and Shirley Jones.
Jeff Pike January 17, 2014
Good Morning Friends and Welcome to 2014 About this time every year I post a newsletter expressing ideals and opinions of life as I know it as judged from all that I have experienced in the previous year. Since the theme this past year for me has been “Back To Basics” I would simply like to tell you what I have been up to in 2013 and where I stand today. I hope you do not find this too self indulgent and that those who genuinely do care and want to know enjoy todays blog. So here we go… In looking back at 2013, I find myself with the feeling that I am starting a journey of which I should have begun decades ago; one of self awareness, maturity, discovery, chances, honesty and growth. As I have shared with you previously, I am 3 years and 8 months sober from alcohol. This is an accomplishment and is a life changing event in itself. For me; however, it is all I have learned since I chose to face my demons sober that has effected my life the most. Many times I scratch my head and wonder how I made it this far. I don’t spend time much on those thoughts these days, rather I do my best now to look to the future. I want to thank from the bottom of my heart all of my friends at Celebrate Recovery at Hebron Church in Dacula, Georgia for starting my learning experience on this long road of recovery. More than anything I want to thank my girlfriend, Marti Woodward, and my very good friend Ken Mercer for their help, support and extensive knowledge of recovery which has helped tremendously with my growth. Marti, thank you for loving me – flaws and all. Ken, thank you for the kind of friendship that happens once in a lifetime. I look forward to moving further into my recovery in 2014, both as a student and as a teacher. My own original music was a big priority for me in 2013 and I feel that I accomplished a lot. With the never ending help of my manager, very good friend and business partner in Jeff Pike Music, Kathy Mullen, I was able to make a lot of fundamental business, marketing and musical headway preparing me for 2014 and beyond. Kathy’s energetic drive, persistence, patience and quest for our goal has kept me going at times when I thought I was down for the count. So to Kathy Mullen, a huge world of thanks. We ended the year on a joyous note following the release of my first solo acoustic CD of my career, “Back To Basics” and the launch of my brand new website, www.JeffPike.com. It has felt good to get back to my own music, and to the piano I might add. Looking forward, I hope to release a new CD in late fall of 2014. I also hope to travel more bringing my music to as many people as possible. With that said, if you would like to book a show or know of any venus that would enjoy my music please do not hesitate to contact me. Teaming up with my good friends Hugo Duarte and recording engineer Henry Jordan, we finally released our debut CD as The Frozen Gringos, ”Chill Before Use.” Traveling with Hugo gave me some of the most memorable moments on the road and onstage that I have ever had. I thank him for that and so much more that he has given me throughout our 8 year friendship. Life with A1A is still rolling along and looking quite bright for 2014. I owe all of the guys in the band a huge amount of thanks for what they bring to the band, both on and offstage. Most of all, I want to thank Chaz McDonald for continuing to go above and beyond the call of duty. Without Chaz the A1A bus would stop, and I mean that both figuratively and literally. Chaz takes care of all the business within the band and is the unsung hero. Along with running the band he has also written a lot of great songs this year and we are looking forward to possibly releasing a new CD in 2014. Things are looking good and I am excited about that possibility.
Read more on Looking Back and Looking Ahead..Part 2..
January 1, 2014
Continued from "Looking Back and Looking Ahead - Part 1"
Of course, all of the success in the world would mean nothing without family and friends. I am grateful to have more close and loving friends than I could ever have imagined. I am beyond blessed to still have my Parents and Carol Hildebrand ( my daughters Grandmother and caregiver ) with me and I thank the Lord for them every day. With my family on the Pike side, my daughter’s family on the Hildebrand side and my extended family with Martha on the Woodward side, I have more love around me than some people get in an entire lifetime – and I do not take it for granted. Speaking of the two loves of my life, my daughter Ashton and my girlfriend Martha continue to amaze me and make me proud. Ashton is in her freshman year at The University of Georgia and Martha is returning to Psychotherapy as her primary profession. So when it comes down to it, 2013 was a year full of celebrations for me. For the first time in what might be my entire life I feel a sense of true peace and happiness in every aspect, and yet, there is still a lot unknown and there are still many opportunities for growth. Sometimes it is quite scary. I am doing my best to face these unknowns with my eyes wide open, my body healthy, and trusting completely in God and in those who love and care for me. I wish the same for you in 2014. Happy New Year and may God bless all that you do.
Jeff January 1, 2014
Change is eminent. Resistance to change is futile and time keeps marching on. You can run as fast as you can, and you can bury your head in the sand, but you will never be able to outrun change - or Father Time.
Like many of us I have never been too keen on change. Up until just a few short years ago (4 Years in January to be exact) I had a lifelong habit of burying my head in the sand. Ignore something and either it does not exist or it will go away. That was the way my head worked and the way my actions played out for many years.
For those of you who do not know (though most do) I was once a drinking man. So it should come as no surprise when I say that my life was about denial. Though I no longer drink alcohol and have been completely sober for almost 4 years, I am not going to sit here and tell you that I have completely overcome and beaten that nasty little praxis. Despite my constant vigil it still pops up now and then, though not quite as often as it used too. Yet I am still not a big fan of change even though I have done quite a bit of it over the past few years.
So, imagine my surprise that for the first time in my life I find myself welcoming change, seeking it out, excited as to what new lessons, experiences, growth, and adventures lie ahead for me now that I am able to live and think outside of my box of false security and denial. Of course stepping out side of the box and seeking out change does not always mean that things will go the way I want them too. No, not at all. But if I am going to grow I DO have to take chances and make changes.
For me, along with all of the wonderful gifts of my recovery and my late blooming self awareness, there are also new fears and worries. All brought on by the changes and the choices I have made in my life. But unlike I did for so many years, this time “I will not go quietly into that dark night.” I am looking forward with great anticipation to what 2014 has in store for me.
As 2013 comes to a close I am reminded of just how short life really is. I think for the first time in my life that is really hitting me. I have lost many friends this year, my daughter is in College, my band (A1A) is almost 23 years old, and I am over half a century old... But instead of whining and complaining I am going to do my best to live a healthy life of adventure and change. I am not going down without a good fight, and I am going to make the second half of my life twice as interesting as the first half. But most importantly, I am going to let God lead the way.
In closing I hope that everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving. For those of you who have been with me through thick and thin, and you know who you are, I love you. Life would not be what it is today without you. Follow your star. Follow your heart. Follow your dream...but let God blaze the trail. I wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and a New Year of Change!
With the spirit of the season, Jeff
I have returned from one of the most amazing musical, spiritual and life learning weeks of my life. For 5 days in a row, 7 hours a day I was part of a class of 5 hand picked students blessed enough to be personally taught voice and songwriting techniques by one of the finest musicians, vocalist's and songwriter's of the past 40 years, Gino Vannelli. I will share more with my blog, photos and music in time. But this morning, I just wanted to let all who were interested know I was home, feeling, blessed, grateful, alive and in a very new and improved space.
Many personal thanks to Gino and Ross Vannelli, Phyllis and Ed at Brickhaven Bed and Breakfast, Kathy Mullen and Stephanie Ranker for help making this past week possible for me. Also, a very special tip of the hat to the good friends and memories I made this week with my new classmates. -