Just got a phone call. My childhood band mate died at 57. I suspect his high blood pressure and diabetes finally got the best of him. In 1975, he and I started our first real band with two other guys. One of those guys is Jim Beard, who has been touring the past decade with Steely Dan (I hope to meet up with him next week, when they are in St. Louis). We'd play Buddy Holly, Motown stuff and Peter Framption (yes, before "Comes Alive," thank you very much). At the time a local newspaper confirmed he had the largest personal record collection in Pennsylvania. So we would pick a record and learn the song. We often respectfully disagreed on gear and musical approach, which created some wonderful musical tension (even the last time I saw him). When I went to college, I lent him my drum kit, guitars, amps, mics & PA stuff to get his music career started. When I returned, he got me into a network of musicians and did night after night of pick-up gigs on bass, guitar and sometimes drums. Rock, Pop, Country, Jazz, Disco... Let me tell you - that is where where you really learn your craft. He started a successful recording studio (now a video studio) and sound company. It would be 1 AM and i am in a dead sleep and he would call me in a panic "My MCA 24 Track has channels that went dead - I am in the middle of a session!" I'd go over and fix his stuff and never took a dime. After a few years, he thanked me with his 1964 Fender Vibroverb amp which I still have. I saw him last about a year ago when I was in PA and heard he had a minor stroke. Today, I am sadly smiling with the memory of Bob, Jim, Denny Scarpelli and I doing a cover of Don McLean's "American Pie." If I know Bob, he is in heaven in an all-night jam with Buddy Holly! Rip, Bob.