Welcome to Chasing La Bella Vita. “Bella Vita” means “Beautiful Life” in Italian.
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If you already know me, you know that I spend a lot of time in Italy. I visited Rome when I was a teenager and I fell in love with that city.
Since then I have visited many other Italian cities and regions. The one thing that always impresses me is the culture.
Italians are artists. They have perfected the art of living and it starts with they way they view each other and all the people of the world.
Everyone knows each other’s strengths and weaknesses but they just don’t care. Blemishes are overlooked and the person is loved for who they are, warts and all.
I loved it so much I bought a place there in a hilltop village overlooking the Mediterranean.
My first days in the village, with my wildly curly blond hair, white skin and blue eyes, I was welcomed into the village and have become one of them. Each time I return, kisses are rained down on me no matter how long I have been gone.
This has become my world view; that we all have our warts and we are all still infinitely loveable.
My site here is devoted to this concept and to helping people with ideas and actionable items to make their lives better and to ease the suffering in which we may find ourselves while we do our best to get by.
For those who know me well, you know that I have studied the works of L Ron Hubbard extensively and that his ideas have become a part of me. Much of what I write has roots in his teachings. If you are interested in finding out more about life improvement you can go here for free online courses in such subjects as Communication, Parenting, How to Resolve Conflicts, How to Fix you Finances, How to Achieve your Goals and much more. Click here for more information:
For those who are not interested, that is totally ok. We welcome everyone here.
I hope to entertain, educate and foster communication here. I am so happy you chose to visit us!
Below is a list of the books I have written and links to get them as well as my bio as a musician and instructor. In addition to these, I am a guest blogger for Lifehack.org and have had several of my articles there reach in the thousands in terms of shares on social media.
I have authored several books. The first one is a collection of funny short stories entitled “Ode to Bad Plumbing and Other Serious Poems for the Modern Age” (http://www.amazon.com/Plumbing-Other-Serious-Poems-Modern-ebook/dp/B00A1QBT2Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1385705196&sr=8-1&keywords=ode+to+bad+plumbing).
The other is a romantic story entitled “Chasing La Bella Vita”. . Chasing La Bella Vita is also available as an eBook on both Amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com. My third book. “Love and Murder at Sheltering Pines” is also available on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Love-Murder-at-Sheltering-Pines-ebook/dp/B00A93J8JC
And my newest book “Music Symbols Made Simple” is available here: .http://www.amazon.com/Music-Symbols-Made-Simple-Super-Simple-ebook/dp/B00IKWW62K/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1393083723&sr=8-1&keywords=music+symbols+made+simple
You can also order your paperback, spiral bound copy of Music Symbols Made Simple. It is bound so that it will stay open on your piano while you study and perform the exercises.
I started singing when I was a teenager and took lessons from Bob Bernard in Palo Alto. He taught correct vocal technique and is a noted opera coach as well as a really fun guy.
He had me lunging around his house with various swords and props while singing lines in Italian. I had no idea what the lines meant and sometimes I wondered if Bob was just playing with me, but I had a blast and I learned a lot.
During that time, Bob was also working with Joan Baez, whose lesson was right after mine! I had the opportunity of watching her perform some Italian arias in master classes that Bob taught. Although this was over 20 years ago and since then I have sung in a lot of different venues and situations, I have never injured my voice thanks to Bob and his attention to the welfare and longevity of the vocal instruments as well as his attention to the beauty of the performance.
Shortly after that time, I started playing bass and took lessons with Myron Dove whom I still think is one of the premiere bassists on earth. Myron has toured with Santana and with Dave Meniketti of Y and T fame.
Subsequently I started playing bass with the Tearmagnets which featured two of my favorite people on earth. One of these people was Oliver Harris who was named as one of the “Unsung Guitar Heroes of the Bay Area” in the BAM Magazine poll of 1989.The Tearmagnets also featured Dennis Dove on drums and vocals (Dennis is Myron’s brother). Dennis is currently touring with his band Gumbo. Watch for him at the various festivals around the Bay Area.
With the Tearmagnets, I warmed up stages for the likes of:
- Clarence Clemons (sax player for Bruce Springsteen)
- Ric Emmett of the hit 70’s band Triumph (his voice is still as great as it ever was)
- Dave Meniketti from Y and T (Wow! He and his band are incredible!)
- Ronnie Montrose
- Rory Gallagher
- Bourgeois-Tagg featuring Lyle Workman on guitar who went on to play with Todd Rundgren and was recently touring with Beck (Lyle was also my roommate for a couple of years during the early Bourgeois-Tagg years)
- Robben Ford
- Bloodline, featuring Jason Bonham (the son of John Bonham of Led Zeppelin fame) on drums
- Blues great Sunny Rhodes
- Tony McAlpine who is currently touring with Billy Sheehan, Steve Vai and Yngwie Malmsteen
In 1995, in the Haight Ashbury Free Press, my original song “Insanity” was awarded eighth in the Local Band Top 20, beating out Jerry Garcia who placed number 20. That same year, the Tearmagnets placed Second in the Battle of the Bands sponsored by Cheers in Sunnyvale. The competition was brutal but the other bands were very nice. It was awesome!
Additionally, The Tearmagnets were played on local radio stations including KSJO with Greg Stone, KSJS, KFJC and college radio stations in San Francisco and other parts of California. In the early 90’s The Tearmagnets were approached by music attorney Mickey Shapiro (Attorney for Fleetwood Mac).
He invited us to go to LA and record in Madonna’s personal studio. At that time, the engineer on the project was Dave Poulliot who had won a Grammy for his work on the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack (Cuts from that project are on the Tearmagnets, Tribunal CD available at CDbaby.com) At that same time, we were approached by people at Restless Records to do a showcase. We had to decline due to other commitments.
I currently play cello in the South Valley Symphony and teach both from my home in Morgan Hill, Ca. and at Rockin Kidz in Los Gatos
I am teaching vocals, music theory, singer/songwriter classes, viola, cello and violin, both classical and contemporary.
Write me and tell me about yourself.