The Renes, circa 1960. We played Latin & Mexican standards mixed with Rock & Roll tunes, throughout
the Coachella Valley (for you foreigners, that's the Southern California desert near
Palm Springs). This was my first real opportunity to write & sing original songs. From L to R: Sal Velasquez, Ernie Gurrola, Oscar Arias, Johnny Alvarez, Don Duarte,
& Eddie Arias. Six Mexicans & a gringo, with a French name; go figure…
My pal Richard Kiel,
"Jaws" in the James Bond movie "The Spy Who Loved Me," but years earlier I knew him as "Eegah."
Big man, big heart.
“Alan & Bob & Denny,” circa 1965. Yeah, that was our name. We were a fast paced show group, doing pop
songs & some comedy, with lots of harmonies (but no original songs). Played nightclubs
in the Pasadena & Hollywood area. Got to be on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1967, backing ingenue Virginia O’Brien. Then we went right back to playing nightclubs.
Janis & Alan with Jim Henson, circa 1988. Janis & I wrote most of the on-screen character songs for the "Muppet
Babies" TV show. Jim threw a big "thank you" party for the entire cast at Ed Debevick's on La Cienega,
& I decided to bring my camera. I never knew how glad I'd be that I did.
Janis & Alan, 1997. A mutual admiration society. Writing together for nearly twenty years, &
we still get a kick out of each other. Janis brings out my best, & my silliest.
You can hear us singing in the National Geographic's "Really Wild Animals" kids'
videos. Thanks to photographer Jackie Sallow for this, & my home page photo too.
Alan & Diane Warren. I first met her in the mid-70's, when no one cared about her material, & I encouraged her to broaden her writing. Later, when my song "Undercover Angel" started getting airplay, Diane began saving every week of the Billboard charts, unbeknown to me. And when my record finally hit number one, she surprised me with a giant scrapbook showing it's entire chart history! In a business of change, she remains a true friend.
Cannery Row, Las Vegas show: Trini Lopez (Remember "Lemon Tree" and "If I Had A Hammer"?)
Ron Dante, the voice of the Archies, producer of Barry Manilow, and much more...
Mick Sueto, with 1910 Fruitgum Company ("Yummy Yummy Yummy"), great guys.
On stage in LV. Great crowd!
Alabama: My lovely merchandisers, Lisa & Sandra (who are friends from Nashville) with Yuka.
Bo Donaldson (of the Haywoods) 60th Birthday Bash.
Left to right: Mark Pont, Dennis Tufano, Ron Dante, Barry Williams, Bo, Billy Haarbaouer, Alan O'Day, Tommy Cosentino
Johanna Rosie, actress, songwriter, close friend, and future world changer!
Steve Barri, producer of my 1977 Appetizers album.