|brunette or blond (often) after I lived in NYC|
After Automatic disbanded in 1982, I joined Will Sumner's Tropic Zone in Minneapolis. My friend and roommate Charlie had recommended me and he was my agent who would eventually own and operate the Norshor nightclub in downtown Duluth which he renovated.
I packed up and moved to Minneapolis and moved in with a soundman Denny who worked at Prince's nightclub First Avenue. I did get to go there and hang out often...Denny toured the country with lots of big name rock bands.
First Avenue is most known from the Prince movie Purple Rain. It inspired the "Minneapolis music scene," a mix of funk, punk and alternative musics acts that hit national prominence in the 80's. Such acts as Prince, The Time, Vanity, Appollonia & Sheila E on the funk side. Husker Du, The Replacements, Soul Asylum, The Jayhawks & The Suburbs on the punk and alternative side.
I think First Avenue nightclub shut down eventually but I'm not sure.
Here's Tropic Zone performing after I was let go*... (soon after I moved out to Jackson Hole, Wyoming in 1983.) Their new lead singer Ron McCray sounded just like Al Jarreau. I don't think any video exists of me singing with them but I did backup vocals on a new song they recorded at Minnesota Public Radio studios shortly after I left the band. Will told me I'd be back in the band if they ever made it big. (nice guy) (They were called latin-jazz and Brazilian Rock and famous in the Twin Cities but never nationally... Will moved out to CA and is still a musician there.)
*I was let go after Thanksgiving in 1982 after Ron sat in with us on a song. That my friends is the music business. It can kill you if you let it. I didn't get in another band after that: I was too broken. Friends told me I never should have joined Tropic Zone since it wasn't a good fit for my voice and singing. I agree. (maybe more later)
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