CORRECTION....This weekend I came across reel to reel recordings including an old reel to reel recording of Mike Truttschel, Rich Piontek and myself at an early 1969 "Dawn of Creation" practice doing Na Na Hey Hey.
August 24, 2015
May 15, 2015 - Mike Reilly - John, "How did you get interested in music?" "How did you learn?" "Were you involved in school music, band, church, etc?" "Were there local bands, musicians, singers, about when you were young that inspired/taught you?"
John: First drums at 2... Many great teachers...senior drummer through school or section leader... Through HS... Competed a lot at state... Taught drums to put myself through school. First pro band was when I was 13 with Hamilton teacher Lee Jabs. All the guys were 30's we win state battle of bands. Went and formed band "Dawn of Creation" to be with guys my age. Always sang lead and back up. Lots of bands, musicians union would have me sit in with known bands... But doing creative and being a marketing professional for almost 30 years is the other half of me. You can't make a living being a musician unless you get a very rare break... It's all balance and loving what you do.
Mike Reilly - Those first pro bands that you played with when only 13, were they local area? Remember any names? Lee jabs, the HHS teacher, was he local, a music teacher or? What was his band? And thanks for helping out here! Why drums at age 2? Parents play or relatives?
John: Lee was a science teacher. The band's name was "Way of Today" Lee was the keyboard player they were based out of Waukesha. Parents bought me my first kids drums at 2. Lots of questions?
August 24, 2015 - Mike Reilly John F Rickinger did your band "Sensation" record this song "Black Cherry" ? https://soundcloud.com/andy-noble/sensation-black-cherry A guy name Andy Noble posted the song, and he wrote this "Two guys, a horse, and some borrowed music gear all figure into this great rural (Sussex, Wisconsin) mid-70s private press LP. "Black Cherry", an ode to Jeffrey Engel's trusty steed, is a sincere and pretty track which perfectly summarizes the record for me."
John F Rickinger Jeff Engl and Don Fisher created the Sensation album alone funded by Jeff's dad. Shortly after it was done, I joined with a bass player. We tried it as a foursome but Jeff didn't like playing so he quit as did the bass player. Don and I reworked the group with Pat Lavin bass, Fred Zabel lead and we did quite well. We had dueling managers ours and the original Britins. Both bands played at the opening of Northridge and Southridge and clubs around Milwaukee.Britin's founder Joe Salamone and I became friends and we sat in time to time with each others bands. The last big job with Sensation was being the opening act for jazz great Stan Kenton at the old Center Stage owned by Frank Balistreri. Shortly after the job, Stan died. A few months later, Sensation was offered a recording session in California which I turned down for my family, career and left the band. Sensation lasted another few months then broke up. Don stopped playing and writing music. Don and I had a great time together including re-recording and re-arranging an early song Don wrote called "Lady My Lady" which we shared credit and I have one of the just a few recordings done in the studio.