I was born in the Sonoran desert near Sentinel Peak, a Leo in the Year of the Dragon.
I am indigenous with Mexica (maternal) and Maya (paternal) ancestry.
Music was always an integral part of my culture (parents were into mariachi and swing/big-band, my first musical loves) and go back to my earliest memories. Memory flashbacks from being 3 or 4 - my parents, who were total dancing fools, taking me along to ballroom blowouts whenever they could not get a sitter. I was usually found next to the drummer the few times I managed to move out of their sight. Another early childhood memory is the few rare visits we made to friends and relatives in Magdalena, Sonora, Mexico and the always happening fiesta-concerts in the central village plaza. Man, these were some heavy-duty hard-core partying peoples. The orchestral-like mariachis and vocalists, the odor of various meats skewered and rotating over a fire pit, these sounds and smoke wafting through the night air I will never forget.
We moved to California's San Gabriel Valley at age 10. The San Gabriel Mission was ground-zero for the founding of greater Los Angeles and was never more than a few miles away. We moved around alot the first year and lived in East L.A. (for a few weeks), then on to Bassett, El Monte, Irwindale and finally settled down in Covina. Also at this age, I got seriously into music thanks to the beautiful Velasco sisters of Tucson (rock and roll) and the Martinez family of Bassett (r&b, jazz).
I started playing drums at age 12 (thanks mainly to Ringo Starr). Shortly after was my first concert-like experience attending one of those renown dance happenings at the legendary El Monte Legion Stadium (which would soon be immortalized in song penned by a young Frank Zappa) where the headliners were Thee Midniters, a local Chicano one-hit-wonder ('Whittier Blvd') outfit with instrumentation that preceded by some years Chicago and Blood Sweat & Tears.
In the '60's formed first band at age 14 with two school friends and played neighborhood schools and church dances. I have been playing in different local bands ever since. Also played while in military at service clubs and rec centers. Music style : all eras of rock with a few r&b and soul tunes scattered thru-out. Major influences : Carmine Appice(numero uno!)/Dino Danelli - Gene Krupa/Louie Bellson/Buddy Rich - Mitch Mitchell/Ginger Baker and Ringo!
Trivia-V1.0 : Back in the 70's a bandmate worked as a guitar tech for a local company that made a guitar called Charvelle or something (maybe that was the name of the company, what did I know - I'm a drummer) asked me to design a circuit board that mounted onto one of the guitar's control knobs. It was a tiny circuit with less that a handfull of components. He provided me the schematic and told me it was a custom job for a dude I never heard of named Eddie Van Halen. Weird, as I do recall attending a massive house party in Pasadena where a band named Mammoth played. Small world!
I became 'experienced' with the release of 'Are You Experienced?' in 1967.
I saw Hendrix in concert at LA Forum1969-Newport1969Friday-Newport1969Sunday-LA Forum1970-SwingAud.1970.
My first car was a custom 1956 Chevrolet Nomad, in lowrider motif. Great for weekend cruising of Whittier Blvd and Colorado Blvd on New Year's eve. My first 'brand new' car was a 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T, no - not w/Hemi (I wish), it had the 440 Magnum w/Six-Pack. This one got me plenty of speeding & 'exhibition of speed' tickets. Got it up to 145 mph (150 max. on meter guage/don't recall the tach. read) on the I-15 leaving Las Vegas (just married) to L.A. for about one and a half minutes. This run terminated with a ticket from the CHP near Baker, CA. Other vehicles I've owned - 64 Buick Riviera, 1986 Z28, 1990 Blazer K, went thru a Harley phase in the mid-90's and currently drive a late model Silverado. I am saving my pennies for another Harley.
After high school I did 3 years-7 months of a 4-year hitch in the U.S. Air Force (thanks to the winding down of the Viet Nam war and President Nixon's early-out program the remaining 5 months were 'inactive reserves'). Post-boot camp and tech. school I received an overseas assignment, so quickly married sweetheart and took new bride with me for a 2 year tour-of-duty/honeymoon in Europe. My Lady and I traveled/holidayed extensively thru-out the continent and attended a great many most awesome concerts. Upon return to USA daughter-son-daughter followed shortly after. These have provided us with 3 grandsons and 2 granddaughters.
Professional post-military/college occupational history for the following 35 years in electronics engineering with California Institute of Technology at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (Pasadena), Hughes Aircraft Co./Raytheon (Space & Communications Division-El Segundo), Hewlett-Packard (Santa Rosa/Cupertino/Santa Clara) and Northrop-Grumman (San Diego). Started as design draftsman, by late 70's my tools-of-the-trade (drafting machine & table, shape templates, mechanical pens & pencils, etc.) were obsolete, transitioned to high-end workstations/computers and driving CAD-CAE software for design of printed circuits onboard planetary spacecraft (Magellan, Mars Observer & Pathfinder, Galileo, Cassini @ JPL), government earth-orbit recon satellite (@ Hughes) & military (F-22, F-35 @ N-G) avionics systems as well as scientific test & measurement equipment (@ HP).
Father's birthdate -September 18
Father military - 101st Airborne, U.S. Army WWII (an original 'Bastards of Bastogne')
Mother-In-Law passed into next world - September 18
- Somewhere in California
- Music-art-weight training-playing baseball,chess-attend Winternationals & airshows@Miramar & Edwards
- Early retirement enables me & GrandMama to care for g-kids & travel.
*** WATCH OUT FOR YOUR EARS !***
“We don’t want to be classed in any category.” -Jimi Hendrix
"If you can play, you can play anything. I don't like classifications." - Buddy Rich
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