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  1. #101

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    Something a person needs to also keep in mind concerning LA is that wages for a lot of things can tend to be low.
    Lower than other cities with similar housing prices. Rental or otherwise. SF has crushing rental prices, similar to
    NYC but at least wages are high in both those places. Maybe not high enough to justify the cost of living but welcome to the real world. Things may have improved since I was in LA and for top professional Dr, Lawyer, Indian Chief stuff the pay is around the same as any major US city I would bet, but for other things, from my not so recent experience, it's low. And car expenses in LA can be brutal. Gas, repairs and insurance. And you tend to drive a lot as in A LOT. You drive a lot in Texas as well but car repairs can be cheap and gas can be found if you look for $1.60/gal in Houston. But wages are super low. Years ago when I was living in NYC I met a guy from LA who'd been living in NYC for several years. I believe he had a basic white collar sort of job the kind of which might pay $25/ hr today. Maybe a little more but he wasn't that high on the food chain. He told me that moving to NYC was a good move for him financially as far as saving money and getting ahead went because he didn't have a car to contend with. I knew some West Indian guys in LA that were Starvin' like Marvin and then moved to NYC to much improvement. I was a painting contractor for quite a while and I took my show to LA for a bit around 1990. (I had plenty of friends and contacts and had been living there recently so I was hardly moving there cold. Dig?) I had a working band to play with and figured What the F**k, Chuck! I"ll give LA another shot. I had a few guys working for me at one point and had some decent sized jobs. Some commercial jobs and I should have been making some decent money but Man I got hosed! A couple of years earlier, in LA, I was selling new cars at dealerships and it was the same hose job. My brother car salesmen were a bunch of broke ass MFers from the hood with holes in their shoes borrowing gas money for cars they didn't even own. They were basically renting them from the dealership. Five guys sharing an 2 bdrm apt. type of thing. Some sad s**t. I've heard that there's a whole class of youngsters that move to LA and build up a bunch of credit that they use to bling out and party until it runs out. Then they trash it and skip back to Peoria or wherever to lick their wounds on Mom and Dad's couch with fond memories of Hollywood Swingin'. (there's actually a slang term for them which I can't recall) I finally left in disgust and went back up to the SF Bay Area where I could make more money working for someone else. And I've never been back or even made many phone calls to people I'd known. When I now drive from TX to Cali I bypass LA and take that route through Mohave that was talked about up thread.

    Hopefully everyone else's mileage varies considerably.



    Last edited by mrcee; 01-04-2016 at 01:04 PM.

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  3. #102

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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    I split the 1,800 for a one bedroom in NYC (Queens) with my girlfriend.

    Do you all see why I wanna leave? Do you all want to move here and pay that "just be close to the action?"

    If the job with my girlfriend (soon more) goes through, I will be moving to LA. All I've heard from everyone else on this thread is that LA sucks for jazz and LA sucks for this... LA is huge, San Diego ain't too far either. Jeez.

    It's not easy to get a gig in NYC either, cause we're packed to the gills as well. And those jam sessions? Not easy unless you have big cojones. I am getting my courage up to play at more jam sessions, but most of them are still egotistical cutting contests where one musician will whip his thing out to brag about how long it is compared to everyone else(not the one in Flushing, Queens. That's my sanctuary). Does that sound like a band mentality? Reality check, much?

    I think I might find the contrary, because music is my breathe of air (but not my bread), and we are creatures that will do anything to get that breathe of air. So I will do whatever necessary to play the jazz I wanna play and do my day job (a special ed high school teacher).

    I bet that I can find great, like minded musicians, in LA to play real music where everyone is in it for the real deal.

    Thanks for the info, Mark. Finally, some good news.
    Irez..let me know when you get here..we can jam a bit with out an ego contest...
    play well ...
    wolf

  4. #103

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    LA is a horizontal, automobilized city, unlike NYC or SF. the heyday of SOuth Central (back in the bad old legal segregation days) was probably the one and only time that all of the best music venues were concentrated into a single district a la NYC or NO. it's too spread out to have a single, concentrated line of clubs a la nashville or even austin much less NYC.

    still way, way cheaper than NYC or SF. many parts have gentrified heavily since i last lived or gigged there (1990s), but i was just back a few weeks ago, and it's still much more manageable than the SF bay area.

    i get back often but not for gigs, so i dont have a grip on the current jazz scene (whatever we mean by that nowadays)-- i know john pisano hosts a regular jam night at the cantina in burbank, and bruce forman plays there pretty often as well as running the jazz school over at USC. Both SC and UCLA have major jazz programs, as do many of the area high schools. i know folks who gig regularly out in the palm springs area.

    i know there's still a big rockabilly scene, at least out from silverlake to the IE. most of my old friends in the IE play country/blues or rock, but they gig regularly. one of them now manages one of the major clubs. i find it hard to believe that there aren't lots of casual gigs to be had, even in small group bop or postbop-- that was always where the money was when i lived in the area.

    be curious to hear more from folks who are still gigging regularly there.

  5. #104

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    SF is impossible. I was just out in the Bay Area and never once crossed the bridge into the city. LA's got to be better than that.

  6. #105

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    Quote Originally Posted by mrcee View Post
    SF is impossible. I was just out in the Bay Area and never once crossed the bridge into the city. LA's got to be better than that.

    I was never that fond of SF I lived in Oakland for awhile and would go over the city once in awhile usually on business. There is a lot of Jazz and music there, but seemed like Bay Area musicians were very cliquish and even jamming they didn't seem to play much outside their cliques. I did like Oakland I wasn't playing much when I lived there I was deep in the computer biz, but lots of music and liked the vibe of the city. I wouldn't mind living there again.
    No, I'm not going to give you the answer to your question. I don't want to deny you the pleasure you'll receive when you figure it out yourself. -- Bill Evans talking to his brother.

  7. #106

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    I lived in Oakland for about 5 years in the 90s. I was playing out a bit and it was good. It can be gritty but is arguably one of the better urban areas in CA. Interesting about the clique quality. I'd never much thought about it but now that do I would agree. I haven't lived in CA for 10 years but get out there every couple of years or so for a few weeks. In general the place scares me. I should stop raggin' on LA. It is what it is. And there are things about it that I love. Don't get me started on SF. Since the 80s Cali's just turned into a tough nut to crack.

  8. #107

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    anyone else go to see Gilad Heckselman at the Blue Whale a few weeks ago? i went, for the first time there, was great.

  9. #108

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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzgtrl4 View Post
    anyone else go to see Gilad Heckselman at the Blue Whale a few weeks ago? i went, for the first time there, was great.
    jazz---for those who do not know LA very well--your referring to the jazz club in little Tokyo...not the design center on Melrose....
    play well ...
    wolf

  10. #109

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    Wolf,

    It's confirmed. I'm heading to LA this summer to live. We can howl at the moon together. NYC was nice and all, but... Yeah... I'm ready to move.

  11. #110

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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Wolf,

    It's confirmed. I'm heading to LA this summer to live. We can howl at the moon together. NYC was nice and all, but... Yeah... I'm ready to move.

    (wolfgrin)
    play well ...
    wolf

  12. #111

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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Wolf,

    It's confirmed. I'm heading to LA this summer to live. We can howl at the moon together. NYC was nice and all, but... Yeah... I'm ready to move.
    Boy what a culture flip you're in for, from F' you get outta my way to F'you darling, where's my intern to get him out of my way.
    No, I'm not going to give you the answer to your question. I don't want to deny you the pleasure you'll receive when you figure it out yourself. -- Bill Evans talking to his brother.

  13. #112

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    Short story.

    I used to go out for long drives with my pop. He'd drive and I'd sit in the back and we'd listen to music and I would doze off. He's a Queens New Jorka, born n bred. He'd get pissed at people who'd cut him off.

    The story goes that we were in a Las Vegas airport and my dad took me to a toy shop to kill time. I wanted to play with the toy slot machines and I went over and started playing with the crank and what not.

    The owner of the toy shop said, "young boy, you're too young to play with that"

    I looked up at her

    and quickly replied

    "SHUT UP, YOU DOUCHE BAG!"

    Haven't chanced since. My vulgarity makes teaching hard, but I fit right in with the musician crowd. My vulgarity is how I was raised (my mom cursed me off in 3 languages) and I embrace it when I can.

  14. #113

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    irez..

    I think I told you..I am also from NYC..Dad-French Canadian/Mom Italian-Sicily .. so I can curse in three launguages also..and break kneecaps if needed
    play well ...
    wolf

  15. #114

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    When I move, we'll exchange contacts. I don't know anyone in LA as of now. It's kinda a leap of faith, but NYC is too much of a Christ Complex City...

    By that, I mean that people get off on talking about how much they suffer, how hard their lives are, how their work is harder than everyone else's, about no PAIN no nothing.

    Sounds kinda grim to me, I need something more light hearted. Though I've never been religious, I know that the only person who could really suffer with any humility was the big JC (just in case saying his full name offends people). Here in nyc, suffering doesn't mean shit unless you tell everyone how bad you got it.

    I'll take my woes from the Wolf, Muddy, Hooker, T-Bone, and Elmore, thank you VERY much NYC! At least they make it musical. Hopefully LA is less Christ Complexy...

    But Wolf, we gotta play. I know there's a lot of people here from NYC, but I've only ever played with HeptotheJive (he is one swinging mother fucker). Kind of a shame. I'd rather play music than talk shop, but these days I have been talking more shop cause my playing opportunities are drying up.

    Right now it's snowing, hard. At least it looks pretty.

  16. #115

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    Next question, how the HELL am I gonna bring my arch top with me? I mean, I don't wanna go on a plane with my guitar, the fuckers broke my last guitar (my very first guitar).

    I was thinking... road trip it out there?

  17. #116

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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Next question, how the HELL am I gonna bring my arch top with me? I mean, I don't wanna go on a plane with my guitar, the fuckers broke my last guitar (my very first guitar).

    I was thinking... road trip it out there?

    When I've moved long distance I put them on the moving van. I get the big garment/waredrobe boxes then use towels and blankets to crate a cushion on the bottom. Then put my guitars in their cases in the box, then pack with clothes like the boxes is meant for. Then I arrange the clothes around the tops of the cases for more cushioning. Some movers have commented on being the heaviest wardrobe boxes they've encountered. Done that three times.

    I've driven with guitars and that bothers me because they are bouncing around, weather hot and cold, then when I stop for the night and leaving the guitar in a room. Even stopping for lunch in small hole in the wall places and carfull of stuff in a target for theft.

    If flying these days I would spend the money for a ATA case so if something was to happen airlines argue less because it's ATA approved.

    Last if you know someone in L.A. you could shipped your guitar overnight so it spends minimal time in transport, but it's expensive. When I got my VB guitar it was about $300 for overnight shipping from NYC to LA.
    No, I'm not going to give you the answer to your question. I don't want to deny you the pleasure you'll receive when you figure it out yourself. -- Bill Evans talking to his brother.

  18. #117

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    I just stumbled on this. I am posting so I'll be reminded to toss in my 2 cents when I get a few minutes. I have been in LA since 1976. I have watched the city change, that's for sure.....

    I drove here from Canada in the summer of 76. The only reason I got off in Hollywood from the freeway is that I saw the Capitol Records building. I probably would have driven all the way to San Diego if I didn't see that building and a Hollywood exit sign.... that's how green I was.

    Doc

  19. #118

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    Quote Originally Posted by docdosco View Post
    I just stumbled on this. I am posting so I'll be reminded to toss in my 2 cents when I get a few minutes. I have been in LA since 1976. I have watched the city change, that's for sure.....

    I drove here from Canada in the summer of 76. The only reason I got off in Hollywood from the freeway is that I saw the Capitol Records building. I probably would have driven all the way to San Diego if I didn't see that building and a Hollywood exit sign.... that's how green I was.

    Doc

    Hollywood started changing a lot around 1980 the 60's and 70's was a great music scene going on then.
    No, I'm not going to give you the answer to your question. I don't want to deny you the pleasure you'll receive when you figure it out yourself. -- Bill Evans talking to his brother.

  20. #119

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    Quote Originally Posted by docdosco View Post
    I drove here from Canada in the summer of 76. The only reason I got off in Hollywood from the freeway is that I saw the Capitol Records building.
    classic angeleno story.

    i came on the bus like lots of other pilgrims. spent my first night dead broke on the floor of the greyhound station. all the undercover cops split right before midnight. it was a good introduction to the city.

  21. #120

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    Quote Originally Posted by klk View Post
    classic angeleno story.

    i came on the bus like lots of other pilgrims. spent my first night dead broke on the floor of the greyhound station. all the undercover cops split right before midnight. it was a good introduction to the city.
    I filled up the back seat and trunk of my 1970 Olds Toronado, and drove the 1500 or so miles. Had an Ovation acoustic, a Kohno classical and a black beauty Les Paul Custom. I was armed and ready to do damage in LA.

    It took me a while to get settled, but I did start gigging right away and signed up for classes at Dick Grove School Of Music. After 6 months I moved to an apt on South Gale Drive, a 2 block area in Beverly Hills that is more like West LA, than BH. The slums of Beverly Hills, I guess. However the return address was impressive. After 6 months in LA I had already moved to Beverly Hills. The folks in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan must have been suitably impressed I'm sure.

    Ha!

  22. #121

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    Quote Originally Posted by docdosco View Post
    I filled up the back seat and trunk of my 1970 Olds Toronado, and drove the 1500 or so miles. Had an Ovation acoustic, a Kohno classical and a black beauty Les Paul Custom. I was armed and ready to do damage in LA.

    It took me a while to get settled, but I did start gigging right away and signed up for classes at Dick Grove School Of Music.

    It was the best I loved working and studying at DGMW.
    No, I'm not going to give you the answer to your question. I don't want to deny you the pleasure you'll receive when you figure it out yourself. -- Bill Evans talking to his brother.

  23. #122

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    Flying with my guitar is scary. I have to bring all my books as well (I used to be an English teacher) and I can't part with any of my books. I mean, nothing says road trip like a bunch of Henry Miller, Gertrude Stein, Derrida, and Ellison. I am traveling with an Eastman that was originally 2,600 smackers, but I put in another 2,500 in modifications. New pup, new custom bridge, new electronics, new tuners, new nut, refret. I love my guitar, she is now a part of me (weird guitar fetish, but I know you all have the same problem ) and if anything happened to her... I wouldn't want to be that person... You know what I mean?

  24. #123

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    It's probably going to be San Diego for me.

  25. #124

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stevebol View Post
    It's probably going to be San Diego for me.

    San Diego is nice, expensive, but has L.A. ex-patriot Jazz players living there like Peter Sprague great guitarist, Bob Magnusson, and others. L.A. is about 120 miles north so not to bad a drive when someone good is in town.
    No, I'm not going to give you the answer to your question. I don't want to deny you the pleasure you'll receive when you figure it out yourself. -- Bill Evans talking to his brother.

  26. #125

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    Quote Originally Posted by docbop View Post
    San Diego is nice, expensive, but has L.A. ex-patriot Jazz players living there like Peter Sprague great guitarist, Bob Magnusson, and others. L.A. is about 120 miles north so not to bad a drive when someone good is in town.
    Music is on hold for now. I'm looking for a place to settle down. I liked San Diego. Seems to be a little less expensive than LA. I was stuck in National City for 6 years. I managed to claw my way out and got my one shot at being a club musician overseas but it didn't work out long term.
    I just want to settle down at this point. I think $1000-$1200 might get me a nice pad in Diego. Not sure which neighborhood to go with.
    I drove a cab out there. Don't want to do that again. I'll find a part-time job.
    If I have to go back to the Hotel California I'd be happy just being the janitor.
    Someone needs to clean the place, right?

    I want to clean bathrooms at the Hotel California...
    Any time of year,
    There's no weather here...
    Last edited by Stevebol; 01-28-2016 at 01:34 PM.

  27. #126

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stevebol View Post
    Music is on hold for now. I'm looking for a place to settle down. I liked San Diego. Seems to be a little less expensive than LA. I was stuck in National City for 6 years. I managed to claw my way out and got my one shot at being a club musician overseas but it didn't work out long term.
    I just want to settle down at this point. I think $1000-$1200 might get me a nice pad in Diego. Not sure which neighborhood to go with.
    I drove a cab out there. Don't want to do that again. I'll find a part-time job.
    If I have to go back to the Hotel California I'd be happy just being the janitor.
    Someone needs to clean the place, right?

    I want to clean bathrooms at the Hotel California...
    Any time of year,
    There's no weather here...
    Ask Dwight. New member on Chit Chat. He has a weekly sitting in jam in San Diego and is a hell of a player and a sweetheart of a person. At least jump over there and get on the thread so you guys meet.

    If you get to San Diego, maybe you can plug in with some jazz people right off.

    Gee, I love this forum. I used to have actual go somewhere to hang out with people. Now I can do it from the comfort of my living room.....

  28. #127

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    LA is tempting because there are a lot of singers there. R&B is popular there and that's my thing. IDK. It's like starting from zero. Plus all the driving. I'm 58 and should move on to something else. I can see why jazz musicians might get frustrated with LA. Lot's of snark between musicians and the audience. Cliches.

  29. #128

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    Hey guys. So, my fiancee got the job and I am going to LA. So the question remains, how do I ship a guitar across the country. I nixed the road trip idea, too much time and variables. How have you guys shipped guitars in the past. If something happened to my arch top, I would feel like a part of me died. Can I get the guitar insured? Let me know. Any other info about the shipping process would be greatly appreciated.

  30. #129

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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    Hey guys. So, my fiancee got the job and I am going to LA. So the question remains, how do I ship a guitar across the country. I nixed the road trip idea, too much time and variables. How have you guys shipped guitars in the past. If something happened to my arch top, I would feel like a part of me died. Can I get the guitar insured? Let me know. Any other info about the shipping process would be greatly appreciated.
    Take it to a UPS store (there are quite a few around most towns) and have THEM wrap it for shipping.
    Insure it for as much as you think your ax is worth. That's what I would do. They're good.
    You can't analyze something you can't play! (Robert Conti)

    Technique is the means to play just like your voice is your means to speak. (Robert Conti)

  31. #130

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    Quote Originally Posted by docbop View Post
    San Diego is nice, expensive, but has L.A. ex-patriot Jazz players living there like Peter Sprague great guitarist, Bob Magnusson, and others. L.A. is about 120 miles north so not to bad a drive when someone good is in town.
    It looks to be a little cheaper than LA. I'm pretty set on Diego. Now, where to look for an apartment. I drove a cab in National City and then just north of downtown Diego. I remember a little.
    I'd like to get teacher there after I settle in.

  32. #131

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    Quote Originally Posted by West LA Jazz View Post
    Take it to a UPS store (there are quite a few around most towns) and have THEM wrap it for shipping.
    Insure it for as much as you think your ax is worth. That's what I would do. They're good.
    You've done that before. I am worried because I've gotten instruments ruined while flying with them before. If anything happens to my arch top... I don't have the money to recoup the costs of repairs...

    Should I ship it in the hard shell case (might rattle around) or the soft shell (levi's and heavily padded).

    Just nervous. That guitar is gonna be my salvation as I get my shit together in LA with work and all. Looking forward to the weather, though. NYC is brick, as my students call it. gonna creep down to the single digits over the weekend, and we are leaving Saturday to check out places to rent. Warm weather, here I come.

  33. #132

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    Quote Originally Posted by Irez87 View Post
    You've done that before. I am worried because I've gotten instruments ruined while flying with them before. If anything happens to my arch top... I don't have the money to recoup the costs of repairs...

    Should I ship it in the hard shell case (might rattle around) or the soft shell (levi's and heavily padded).

    Just nervous. That guitar is gonna be my salvation as I get my shit together in LA with work and all. Looking forward to the weather, though. NYC is brick, as my students call it. gonna creep down to the single digits over the weekend, and we are leaving Saturday to check out places to rent. Warm weather, here I come.

    Have them brace the guitar INSIDE the case with bubble wrap BEFORE bubble wrapping the actual case and then boxed. You could ship ground but that takes a while longer. The key is to immobilize the guitar INSIDE the case.
    And YES, I've done this before. Please INSURE your baby. It'll give you more peace knowing that God forbid...
    You can't analyze something you can't play! (Robert Conti)

    Technique is the means to play just like your voice is your means to speak. (Robert Conti)

  34. #133

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stevebol View Post
    It looks to be a little cheaper than LA. I'm pretty set on Diego. Now, where to look for an apartment. I drove a cab in National City and then just north of downtown Diego. I remember a little.
    I'd like to get teacher there after I settle in.
    You are correct, it's cheaper than LA for a fact. I have many pals out there and visit regularly.
    You can't analyze something you can't play! (Robert Conti)

    Technique is the means to play just like your voice is your means to speak. (Robert Conti)

  35. #134

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    Quote Originally Posted by West LA Jazz View Post
    You are correct, it's cheaper than LA for a fact. I have many pals out there and visit regularly.
    Cool. I just found out that July 22 in San Diego is 'Calvin Ollie Baugh Day'. He was my former bandleader. I lost track but I guess he was in LA from around 86-91, then moved back to Diego. He got a good job as a lab tech and had a kids foundation.
    I found out recently that he passed away in 08' and I still can't get used to the idea he's gone. He looked out for me on more than one occasion.

  36. #135

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stevebol View Post
    Cool. I just found out that July 22 in San Diego is 'Calvin Ollie Baugh Day'. He was my former bandleader. I lost track but I guess he was in LA from around 86-91, then moved back to Diego. He got a good job as a lab tech and had a kids foundation.
    I found out recently that he passed away in 08' and I still can't get used to the idea he's gone. He looked out for me on more than one occasion.
    I totally understand! I've had more than a few pass only to find out later. Sorry for your loss and the best of luck and times in San Diego when you arrive!
    You can't analyze something you can't play! (Robert Conti)

    Technique is the means to play just like your voice is your means to speak. (Robert Conti)