After my years of recording rock stars, performing on the “Oldie” circuit with the Earls and my work in film and music videos, I left the music business to raise a family and start my own corporate team building business. Among my clients were 25 repeat Fortune 500 companies. I led groups ranging from 25 to 2500 in various games and teambuilding exercises. Eleven years ago I had a life changing (read: sobering) experience, which made me realize, more than ever, that I wanted to return to music.
With this re-launch of my music career. I have recorded 15 new songs, I have self published a CD, and I have written, produced, and starred in a one man show, a multi-media musical memoir, which had two successful SRO runs in the New York area.
My political interests have given me the opportunity to perform before hundreds of thousands of people. A year ago I wrote a song that was both a reminiscence of the patriotic spirit of my childhood and a tribute to American war heroes. I cut it to old home movies, and released it on my website and elsewhere online. The song evoked powerful memories and emotions among those who saw it, and it, and I developed a modest viral following . Based on the success of “Memorial Day,” I was moved to write “Take Our Country Back.” It was picked up virally, and I developed a following among the Tea Party movement. I performed it before the largest political rally in American history this past September 12 in Washington, D.C.
I have since been asked to perform for rallies from Pennsylvania to Florida to California. I just wrote a song for the California Water crisis—an issue affecting families and farms in California’s central valley whose water for irrigation has been diverted to preserve a minnow.
So here is a very unofficial timeline with the major events in my life.
Born: August 29, 1950 Port Chester, NY
Port Chester HS/Fordham Prep
For info on the early years (1950-1975) see “The Cakeman Chronicles”.
1975 First single, “The Spirit of Christmas” released. I recorded it on a 4 track ¼ inch reel-to-reel TEAC and sent copies to everyone I knew for Christmas.
1976 Amtrak entertainer. I played guitar and sang on Train 81, The Silver Star, between NY and Florida, playing six nights on the train and 4 off. Five hours a night in the Bar Car gets your crowd pleasing songs honed (“I’ve Been Workin’ On The Railroad” was the hands down favorite.) I met David Bowie one night, travelling to play a concert in Charlotte. I guess he didn’t like flying, but he did like my playing.
1977 Started my first original band, Windjammer. We had a great neon sign even if we only had a couple of gigs.
1978 Attended Institute of Audio Research to learn 24 track recording skills and got a job at North Lake Sound in White Plains, NY as their engineer. NLS was built and owned by Crazy Joe Renda, Chip Taylor and his brother, Jon Voight. I worked there for six years, with icons like Eddie Kramer, Ace Frehely, Peter Frampton, Phil Ramone, Buck Dharma, Andre Previn, Dr. John, Chuck Rainey, the Earls and countless doo-wop groups from the 50’s.
1979 Married to Dale Weigel and have three children in the next six years, Casey, Sara and Julie. Raise the family in Kent, NY (40 miles north of NYC.) The marriage ended amicably in 2007
1986 Started Reels on Wheels, a 24 track recording studio in a truck. Remote recording included Robert Klein, NCAA, Blotto, Bob Mayo, Anton Fig among others.
1988 Moved the truck equipment into Pudding Street Recording in Carmel, NY and worked with Ace and Eddie Kramer, Rob Sabino (Chic), the TV pilot “Songwriter” with Chip Taylor, among others. Filmed and produced the award winning short video, “Orienteering-All Welcome” winning the top prize from Sweden’s IOF.
1989 The Doppler Brothers appeared at the 16 hour pay-per-view special “This Country’s Rockin’” live at the Pontiac Silverdome.
1990 Began decade long membership in the Earls (“Remember Then”) and sang with them at every major venue in the East including Madison Square Garden, Nassau Coliseum, Meadowlands, Carnegie Hall, Radio City and the World Trade Center
1991 Treasure Hunt Adventures starts to eclipse the music business in revenue and energy. Teamed up with mentor Bjorn Kjellstrom to start SCIGO, Science and Geography through Orienteering, which brought the multidisciplinary benefits of the Scandinavian sport to tens of thousands of US school children.
1992 Record music for “A Bronx Tale,” the film by Chazz Palminteri and directed by Robert DeNiro.
1993 Started Cakeman Sound, a digital mastering business on 34th street in conjunction with Manhattan Center, mastering the likes of Elliot Goldenthal and Julie Taymor, and many others.
1999 January 16, the date of my last drink and drug, following a head-on collision on the Taconic Parkway. Thankfully, no serious injuries but the climb out of the hole began the next day. Thank God.
2000-now As work in THA continues and is rewarding, my head clears up and my true bliss, songwriting, comes back to me. In the several years following I write many songs, a musical and a book.
2007 “The Cakeman Chronicles” debuts in NY to SRO and acclaim.
2008 First CD, “A Cake for the Band” is released
2009 After writing a song to vent my frustration with the political scene in the US, “Take Our Country Back” goes viral and I play on Fox, at numerous tea parties and finally to 1.7 million at the D.C. March on Washington. “Memorial Day” CD is released on September 11.
2010 Performed at the Washington Monument before 50,000 with Victoria Jackson. "Route 22" hits YouTube.
2011 Released "Memorial Day" video, and soon after, "Route 22" which was front page news in the NY area.
2012 "High On A Mountaintop" video goes viral...a tribute to the SEALS killed in Benghazi attack