Life Is Good

Life Is Good
Life Is Good

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Blues Blast Magazine review by #RexBartholomew of my Life Is Good Album

David Reo – Life is Good www.davidreo.com 12 tracks / 44:00 After growing up in Rhode Island, David Reo has made the entertainment industry his life’s work, having attended the venerable Berklee College of Music in Boston and then moving on to Tinseltown to make a go of the television genre. While working on a few standout series (remember Happy Days?) he started writing and recording his own music in 1984. Since then he has produced other acts as well as playing a couple thousand shows with The Preachers Blues Band around the Los Angeles basin. David’s fourth album, Life is Good, is a collection of a dozen blues-based and country songs, eight of which are originals. Besides writing these songs, Reo provided the vocals and guitar for the album. A score of other musicians contributed to this project, including Evan Grosswirth on bass, Pete Gallagher on the skins, Jim Calire on keyboards and sax, and Bill Flores on the pedal steel. Jeff Cowan was the engineer and producer for the album, which was cut in Ventura. The album is divided into two parts: the first act is a set of original blues tunes that were written by Reo, and the second part is a collection of country songs that includes a few cool covers. The blues portion of the show kicks off with “Shell Shocked” a big-sounding song with in your face horns and slick guitar fills. This is our introduction to David’s pleasant tenor voice and it is readily apparent that he has a good feel for the rhythm and blues he is slinging. “Uzbekastan” is really unexpected, with a Benny Goodman feel that is provided by righteous clarinet from Geoff Nudell and Gene Krupa-esque tom pounding from Gallagher. This song does not go whole-hog big band, as the guitar provides most of the melodies, but it still swings like mad and the lyrics are funny and fit well with the musical theme. This is followed up with “You Won’t Matter,” a more conventional slow-burning blues song with a hot horn section and fantastic piano and organ work throughout. Reo finishes up his blues set with a “Too Far from Home,” which has a laid-back California-themed feel and lyrics. Michelle Corbin sings lovely harmonies on this one and Nic Mancini brings his vibraphone into play, which is something that does not happen much on blues albums that come across my desk. There is a definite break when the country action starts with Led Zeppelin’s “Hot Dog” from their 1979 album, In Through the Out Door. The original is an Elvis-infused blues song with country elements, but David and his crew takes it all the way to Nashville with a bit of Albert Lee chicken pickin’ guitar, which is an improvement over what was kind of a strange song to start with. Other country covers include Buddy Holly’s “Love’s Made a Fool of You,” which was made popular by The Bobby Fuller Four, and Lefty Frizzell’s “That’s the Way Love Goes” which was taken to number one by Merle Haggard back in 1984. A standout track from the country side of things is Reo’s take on Juice Newton’s “River Of Love,” a lovely song with fine vocal harmonies and prominent fiddle and cello parts. To close out the set, Reo takes a completely different direction with “Jimi Jam,”which is a heavy dose of the psychedelic blues rock that was pioneered by Hendrix back in the late 1960s. It is well set up as Grosswirth and Gallagher play a nifty backline jam that allows Reo and Guy Martin to cut loose a little. The rest of the album is all about the songs so David had to put his guitar on the back burner, and it is nice that he finishes up with a cut that illustrates what a masterful axeman he is. Life is Good is a solid effort from David Reo, and if you like your blues served up country style this CD will be right up your alley. If you want to hear more from David, he is playing regularly with The Preachers Blues Band in clubs around L.A., and he also just released an album of country classics which should be a real gas. Reviewer Rex Bartholomew is a Los Angeles-based writer and musician; his blog can be found at http://rexbass.blogspot.com.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The David Reo Paper

Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year - Make A Wish And It Will Come True

Happy New Year. Make a wish and it will come true!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Wishing everyone the best in 2013. Health & Happiness.

Musicians on Life is Good Album - Credits

I would like to thank all the great musicians who played on my album, Life is good. They are, Evan Grosswirth, Bass Guitar, Pete Gallagher, Drums, Jim Calire-Piano, B3 Organ and Saxaphone, Gary Lee Herbig, Saxaphone and Flute. Bill Flores, Pedal Steel Guitar, Adam Giacopuzzi, Fiddle, Glenn Grab, Cello, Brian Bathchley, Harmonica, Nick Mancini, Vibes, Guy Martin Guitar on Jimi Jam part 2, Ryeland Allison, Synth Strings on Love Is Blind, James Domine, String arranger, Jesse Chavarria, Congas, Rick Coulter, Back Ground Vocals, Mike Reynolds, background vocals (40 Days), Michelle Corbin, background vocals and co-writer of Too Far From Home, Jeff Cowan, Engineer Producer, David Reo, Guitar, Vocals, producer

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

David Reo hits the mark time after time capturing a corner of the music industry that delights audiences all over the world

David Reo is a singer/songwriter/
guitarist and music producer who has assembled quite a catalog of songs and albums taking fans from blues to country to easy listening.  He has been playing and recording for many years and has expanded his reach into other areas of the entertainment industry as well.

In November 2012, David released his latest CD “Life is Good” with his hit single “Shell Shocked” leading the way.  This song is about a girl named Michelle, thus the title ‘Shell’ Shocked.  This is the first track on “Life is Good” giving listeners a great segue to other songs flow into each other beautifully.  “Shell Shocked” is a great song to take your partner for a spin on the dance floor.  It has some of the best guitar licks out there.  It is a foot stomping, gal twirling, load of fun.  It has a juiced up blues format that will knock your socks off.  His vocals along with his guitar playing give audiences a true defined signature sound.

“Life is Good” is filled with songs like “Shell Shocked”.  These songs bring back a sound that has not been heard in decades, which are reminiscent of the 70’s and 80’s, yet his fusion of blues and country are unmatched in the music industry.  Some of his accolades and accomplishments include but are not limited to:

Opened for Aretha Franklin
Has played over 3,000 shows
Has written 10 sitcoms and appeared on the Blossom TV show where his music was also featured
Has produced The Preachers Blues Band album and a soon to be released album with singer/songwriter Michelle Corbin.
He has another solo album scheduled for release in the spring of 2013.

You can keep track of David Reo’s upcoming schedule, albums and/or song releases along with purchasing of any of his music on itunes, amazon and many on line retail outlets.

Press Release

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Hello, Happy Holidays. Today's is a good blogging day. I am working on getting my new album  out to the masses on quite a few blogs and press sites. It is a work in progress. This blog may act as an educational site for any musicians who dedicate their lives to playing music, making music and marketing music.  Things are picking up. I'll be playing some gigs this month as well with The Preachers Blues Band, Dec 15th at Andreas Wine Bar at Ventura Harbor with harmonica genius Brian Batchly and the Wednesday prior to that I will be performing with The Blues Bandits out in the San Fernando Valley at the Canoga Bowl, Dec 12th. That is always a fun time. I've been playing with sax legend Gary Herbig and Maestro James Domine. This month there will be some special guests. There is talk that one day I will be featured with The San Fernando Vally Symphony Orchestra playing blues guitar with the entire orchestra behind me. That will be an awesome day. I will need a camera crew for sure! :) I have been having a lot of fun this year gong to the tapings of Two And A Half Men. My brother, Don Reo, produces that show and it is really fun to be there! I have gotten to know the sound guys really well. Ron Arnold one of the sound men for 2.5 and Big Bang, also happens to be an amazing guitarist. (He sits in with us sometimes at Canoga Bowl)  I plan to have him play some tracks on my next album due out in the spring of 2013. We're recording this month at Goldmine Studio in Ventura with Jeff Cowan. Thank you for buying my new album. It is on itunes, Amazon and many digital distribution outlets. If you are a blog site or are interested in getting a promotional copy of any of my albums please contact me. Thank You! Peace. David Reo

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Summer 2012

Yes, it is the summer of 2012. August 7th, 2012 for a second. Where does the dice land this second?
Things are going well. I am recording 2 albums. One will be released in the very near future. There is a lot of great music to be heard on these albums. I've been recording at Goldmine Studio in Ventura, CA.
This has been a two year project presently. There are a lot of  great musicians playing these albums. Jeff Cowan is the best sound engineer and producer that I have ever worked with. I'm happy to have had the opportunity to work with him as well as everyone else involved.

Check me out on Instagram

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

David Reo

David Reo
 http://www.reverbnation.com/tunepak/3606774
http://www.reverbnation.com/tunepak/3606774

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Monday, June 06, 2011

The Preachers Blues Band Album Review

Here is a link to the Preachers Blues Band Album which I wrote with Brian Batchley, we also play, sing and produced it with Jeff Cowan at Goldmine Studio, Ventura, CA

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

That's alright I still have my guitar!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Check out music from David Reo

David%20Reo

Back To The Blog

Back to the blog today,
I'm back to the blog today,
I'm back to the blog,
I'm back to the blog,
I'm back to the blog today.

The world didn't end!





David Reo

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Timeless

Hi People, I haven't blogged in a long time. Last we spoke I was living in Rhode Island on my lakeside cottage freezing my life away. Well, I rented the house out, packed it up and moved to Beverly....Hills that is...(Not quite but close) Ventura, CA. I moved back to California and started my life over once again. I am now playing guitar with The Preachers Blues Band. Brian Batchley and myself. We recorded a great CD entitled, Yeah Baby, and we work steady playing countless gigs. I am constantly working on tone these days.

The move back to California has not been completely easy yet it's been fruitful. I am happy that I did it and I love California. I love playing in our band and playing gigs is very rewarding.

It is time to take it to the next level with musicianship and tone and life itself.

Life. None of us know how long we will be here. It's a day to day, moment to moment thing. Enjoy it.

It's not always easy, I know. Love life. Eat well. Drink lots of fruit shakes and eat fresh salads with artichokes and avocados. Walk. Be thankful for everything and cultivate what ever talents you are blessed with.

That's all I know.

Have a nice day from Ventrura, CA

Blessings.

David Reo

www.myspace.com/thedavidreoband

www.ThePreachersBluesBand.com

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

The Early Years Of Guitar Developement

Hello and welcome to The Sunday Blog 6-19-05. Happy Father’s Day. It’s been a couple of Sundays since I last blogged. Bless me father for I have blogged. I was busy sorting out life. If anyone is interested I will be playing a few gigs out in California. July 2nd at the Deer Lodge in Ojai, CA and July 4th at Freedom Park in Camarillo, CA and July 7th in downtown Ventura at some out door street scene. Say hello if you are there. Today I am in New England. It’s a nice day here. Summer is always beautiful in the North East. Winter they can keep. Some people like winter. I am not one of them. Thank you for all the downloads of my tunes and videos at ourmedia.org. It makes me feel wanted. Ourmedia finally posted my song Little TV Angel and the video For Little TV Angel under the URL, David Reo Live. They are good ones to have. David Reo live is 26MBs long. It's worth the wait. Presently I am attempting to be more melodic with my solos by incorporating the pentatonic scale within the major scale during solos. I learned that from watching a bunch of Eric Clapton DVDs. If it’s good for Eric, it’s good for me. Like if you are in the Key of C start your solo out within the Key of A minor. My goal now is to buy new clothes. I may be moving back to California. I will have to see how the next few weeks go with my trip out there. I’m going to hook up with my old friend Mike Parrot. Mike is like Sam Kinison Jr. Always a good time with Mike. I met Mike at Chatsworth Park in 1986.
I was unemployed and had just rented a room in a house in Northridge. So there I was. Between looking for work every day I would go up to Chatsworth South Park and bring my Dobro guitar.(The toilet seat model-which appears in the video clip Dobro Dave) I got the name Dobro Dave from my days at Chatsworth Park. Chatsworth Hills and Chatsworth park are the place where they filmed The Lone Ranger and Roy Rogers and a bunch of old westerns. Back then there was the Iverson Ranch and The Spaun Ranch made famous by the Manson gang in the 60's .I would go up there and sit by myself and play away. I noticed a large group of people way down at the other end of the park. There seemed to always be a great deal of activity going on. One day Mike came walking by to check my playing out. He played guitar also. He was into it and he invited me up to the group of people at the other end of the park. That is where I stayed for the next four years. It turned into a major chapter in the book.
There was at least fifty people hanging out. All kinds of characters. Hippies and bikers and street people living in the hills. People from other parks. Granada Hills. Sierra Madre. Box Canyon. So once they heard me playing the slide blues guitar, I became the entertainment there and that turned into a constant party. Consequently my guitar playing matured immensely during that period which lead up the to another period in my life where I began playing the club circuits in Los Angeles. Chatsworth had South Park, North Park and Oaks Park down the road about a mile. There was also The Top Of Canoga (where there was once a yearly Pumpkin Festival before they put in the 118 freeway) and Doggy Road which wrapped around Rocky Peak. Rocky Peak at one time was an Indian reservation. Each park was nestled in the hills and the hills are made up of a series of rocks with caves. You know how you see the cowboys all shooting at each other in the rocks? That’s The Chatsworth Hills. Those same rocks. North Park had at least 25 BBQ ‘s up under the oak trees. It was the perfect set up for the homeless to have a kitchen and shelter in the caves and a free shower by hooking up a shower head to a pipe and screwing that into the sprinkler system that went on in the mornings and evenings. I remember going to a few campsites there. People had furniture and little shaving mirrors, couches. Pictures of Elvis and John F. Kennedy in frames. It was just like home! They even had irrigation ditches dug around the bush. There was Lizard Hill, Hippie Hill and the Sacred Gardens. (Which are now condominiums)There is also an active Amtrak train line that runs through the parks. There is a train tunnel that goes under the mountain from Chatsworth to Simi valley and comes out on the Simi side right where the Biker bar was. The train had to go really slow up the grade into the tunnel so people would hop the trains and get a ride up to San Francisco. Or hop off from San Francisco or Lompoc and Bakersfield. For four years I went there and I got to know all the characters and what went on in their lives. I learned that even when you have no material possessions in life that there is still daily stress on some level. Be it for food or lack of food to police, health, weather or just general everyday being alive. There were people living in the hills, people living in campers and in cars, people who had normal lives and just wanted to be part of something, musicians, famous people, x-cons on the run from Mississippi prison camps, hippie girls dancing in the moonlight....And me! Playing my dobro......slide blues.....sitting on mountain tops over looking both the San Fernando Valley on one side and The Simi Valley on the other. There was a donkey ranch way up at the top of the mountain in Woolsey Canyon. You could go up there and it was like sitting on the edge of the world. Amazing views and beautiful lights below. 1986 to 1992. There were lots of Mikes at the park. Mike Parrot, Motorcycle Mike, Fat Mike, Mike Critter. Ico Mike. Hog dog Ed. Brad & Bennet were like something out of a cowboy movie. They looked like cowboys from the old west. Brad was about 6'3..tall..built..tan..handle bar mustache..blue jeans. He never wore a shirt or shoes..He was the Alpha male. Bennet looked kind of like what I imagine Jessie James would look like...kind of like Joe Walsh from the Eagles/James Gang with a rough edge...I always had this idea to make a movie with the same characters only put them back into the old west as outlaws. It wouldn’t be much different. The Cheese. He lived in a camper and smoked cigars. Glenny Good Buds. He was the house chef. He always had the BBQ going. He was like a park ranger who went bad. He had that whole outdoor half surfer half cowboy thing going on. The women were wild and nice..Janet, who had a daughter that they called Monster. J-9, Kristy, (Kristy Kessler).(after Kessler Whiskey) ..Whitney, Lisa, Patti, Cinnamon Girl, Tanah, Loraine, Heather, Gwen, just to name a few. The area where this happened is the exact place where The Manson gang lived.. At times it reminded me of Manson The Next Generation. Although the street element and hippie vibe was there, there was no Manson cult like thing going on. No cult figure that everyone worshiped. No killer Hippies. It was just a group of people who happened to find each other in the same place where the Manson thing happened twenty years previous to this period of time. There was a mystique about it. At times I wonder about the Chatsworth Hills. Like is there some demon in those hills? Some strange evil spirit? Maybe it is just Los Angeles. I went back about a year ago and it was deserted. Just ghosts. There was a great time there though. They say it was even better before I got there! The main thing was to keep the police at bay. There was a code. 6up. 6up meant the police have entered the park. They had scouts that would yell 6up! From the hilltops. 6up meant put anything illegal into the trash can and move away from it. "The road of excess leads to the path of wisdom". Keats. The police were known as The Budweiser Task Force. Club Dev. That was the Los Angeles Devonshire Division. Sherlock & Officer M. They were classic. Sherlock would come into the park and sit in his patrol car across the way and smoke a pipe and look at everyone with binoculars. It is surprising that they didn't have police on horse back and helicopters with infa-red. At that time it was kind of old school. I have seen police on bicycles and dirt bikes at times in the past. Not there. People had their own language going on. "Ground score" meant you found something good to eat on the lawn. "Flip A bitch" meant to make a U-turn. Squirrels were good eatin’.
This was a kind of incubation period for me musically. I just played guitar all day every day. Other people had guitars and one thing lead to another and before you know it there would be five or ten people playing guitars and jamming out for hours at end. Who had money for a beer run...who was off in the hills...meanwhile I was working and recording music and writing scripts....one minute I would be on a mountain top with bikers and crazy hippie chics saying hey, listen to my new tune! and the next minute I’d be on the set of Blossom....talk about extremes....I’m glad that I got to experience this period of time. As radical as it was at times it was fun.
There was a party all the time and on weekends the party was at people’s houses. Rich people with mansions up in the Hollywood Hills with swimming pools in their living rooms, local parties in the Valley. Parties at the beach or in Malibu Canyon. The Sierra Madre crowd had these big blow outs. I didn’t really care much for drugs and alcohol. I’m basically a sober person. I mean people were off the wall but I just wanted to play the guitar and have an audience and people to jam with. It was more a social thing for me. So that is a window into my Chatsworth Park period. There are lots of worlds and stories within that period that I hope to get to as time goes on. The Chatsworth period led to me getting a band together and I started opening up for the Purple Turtles and one thing lead to another and before you know it I was playing out steady every week for the next fifteen years.. I met my friend Jeff through Chatsworth Park although he lived in a house in Chatsworth lake Manor and shunned the park people. Jeff was the Mayor Of Lake. He was a musician and he had a gig on the other side of Chatsworth at a biker bar. The Knolls area of Simi Valley.. The Knolls is a cousin to Chatsworth but an entire other world on the other side of the mountain. The Biker Bar was there and I spent a year and a half at that biker bar playing every weekend. Paris Parent on Drums and the Late Great Al Seeley on Bass. Big Al. Al past away about four years ago. He was the best bass player that ever lived. Solid bottom. He was one of the greats. Between that I had my own band, The David Reo Band and I started playing with The Preachers featuring Smilin Brian. (Who is now my partner in music) Brian is a fantastic harp player and front man. We played together for ten years out of Ventura, CA and we have a solid sound as a team. I look forward to getting things back on track with The Preachers and Brian soon. http://www.thepreachersbluesband.com/We plan to put out a new CD in the near future.
Within this East coast period I played With Ken Lyon who is a great bluesman. If you are interested look up Ken Lyon on a search engine and buy his CD. http://www.kenlyon.com/ He’s great. A true classic blues Artist. Then I played with The Retro R&B band featuring Nouquina Washington. A black band. I was the only white person in the hood. That lead me to a whole Black family experience that I will write about in the future. There are pictures and video clips from each of these eras posted at ourmedia.org. It was a wonderful time and that was a great band! Great bands seem to only last for a moment. I think that is life. We're all here for the moment.
We’re only all here briefly really. Have fun and do the best you can. Enjoy your friends and enjoy your life!

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Chatsworth, CA (aprox 1920?) Them there are the hills! Posted by Hello

David Reo's Sunday Blog 5-22-05

Hello it’s Sunday 5-22-05. Welcome to David Reo’s Sunday Blog. I’m your host and for the next whatever we’re here. How’s it going? Today is Mike Di’s birthday. Happy Birthday Mike Di. I spent the morning with him and his wife Janice. We went to buy flowers for planting at these wholesale greenhouses owned by these two old Italian men. They are way cool. Old old school.
Little old Italian men living off their flowers. They had a farm too with all kinds of animals. Pigs, Lamas, cows. I bought a few flats of petunias and porchlacas. They are all in. It’s sunny and cold. It’s very cold here this weekend. Like November in May. I have a thermal sweater on. I still went outside and planted my flowers and played the dobro slide blues guitar on my steps. Got just enough Sun too. So I’m ready to roll over here with video blogging. Thanks to Michael Verdi & Ryanne Hodson.....The Vlogger dudes. Sounds like something out of Malibu, CA. Jan & Dean or like the end of the Price Is Right..A Mark Goodson..Bill... They put out some very good information on how to set it up. Now we all have a portal. I always wanted a portal. I guess I always had one with either with music or writing. There is some good stuff out there that I wrote. There is also a very cool guitar video of me playing my song Little Tv Angel. It never made it to Ourmedia but if you go to www.Archive.org and look me up on search, the video shows up there. It’s classic. Joe Westbrook on Rhythm Guitar. Joe is from Texas. Great guy. He knew Buddy Holly. Plays great rhythm & lead and slide tones. Joe’s the man. Murray Goldberg is on Bass. The Blur. Murray is the best. Heart of Gold. He had lots of insights in regard to getting gigs. Jimmy Hammer on Drums. Classic. The Harp player was a sit in. (He got the gig). I will have to find out his name. Murray knows. There was also a keyboard player there named Tom Terisi. He and his girlfriend played the hospital tour gigs in the day and rock and blues gigs at night. Brian Batchley was not there in the physical realm. He was there at that time most of the gigs. I played eight years straight with Brain. The Preachers out of Ventura, CA. Greatness. Brian is the band leader and all around cool great guy.
Plays harmonica. We have such a good chemistry together. I will be playing with him soon in July when I’m out there in CA. We’re playing a couple of gig in Ventura 1st week of July. I’ll make some videos for sure. I put out a beautiful love song called Daydream. It was written for my friend Dionna. She a beautiful spiritual person. I will always love Dionna. She inspired me to write that song. (I just listened to it) It’s beautiful. Classic. So is Dionna. There are lots of stories behind my songs. I will get to them as time goes by. Check out my tune Rhoda’s Song someday.
It’s a country instrumental. Such a sweet song. Samantha Olsen is on fiddle. Samantha was so cool. She was a hippie musician like something out of Haight Ashbury. A beautiful hippie girl playing fiddle. What is better than that? She played with some good people. She dated the bass player in The Purple Turtles. The Purple Turtles played Grateful Dead songs and style. They were amazing. They had a huge following in the San Fernando Valley and outskirts. I went to a bunch of their gigs and parties! The Purple Turtles at The Palomino Club was amazing. Chatsworth Park 1986-92 Grad. South Park, North Park & Oaks park. People living in the hills. Those parks were alive! It’s nice to be sharing this with the world finally. I have so many places to go. The other side of Chatsworth Hills are The Oaks. It’s a whole different scene. I got there at phase two of the Chatsworth Days. There was a biker bar on the other side. I played there for a year and a half straight with Jeff Stoddard and Al Seeley & Paris Parent. The Roadhouse Band.
What a great great time! Free food and beer Friday & Saturday night plus pay. What a blast.

I met Amy Lateer there. Amy was a waitress there. She was the most amazing person I have ever met. She was so beautiful that she could have been a super model and funny!? She got ill and went blind and had to have two kidney transplants. She is the story of Amazing courage. She went to work every day until just about the time of her passing at the Blind Workers Association in Binghamton New York. There ought to be a movie called, The Amy Lateer Rowe Story. She was that courageous. Amy Lateer Rowe was truly an angel. She was amazing and I will love her always.

There are a couple of clips out of David Reo in Bm and Shuffle in F from
that club where we met. Mike’s Old Susanna’s Saloon. Mike Persico. He drove a three wheel chopper and lived in two train cars up in the hills. They had a full time cook named Patrick who spoke with an Irish accent. He wore a white chef’s hat, a tall white hat, with a Harley Davidson patch sewed on it. The stage was set up right in front of the kitchen window so when Patrick was cooking a buffalo steak these big flames would come out the kitchen window an at me while I was playing. There are some great Preachers Recordings yet to come out. I have to talk with Brian Batchley and see about getting this CD out. We had a recording session in Northridge, CA one night with Me, Brian Batchley, , Joe Westbrook, Jimmy Hammer and Jack Bricker. on Bass. Jack was great. He was into choreography. He worked on Thriller. They are some excellent recordings. We did cover tunes. Dust My Broom, Leave My Little Girl Alone with Jack on vocals. I know you’ll like it. Today my roof man is here fixing my roof. It’s a Law & Order Marathon tonight. They have so many Law & Order shows on that you could watch it every night for quite a while before catching a repeat. I like Law & Order SVU best. I want to start a new one Law & Order SG. Spice girls working as NY Cops. The original cast. Mel C, breaking down doors holding her revolver. Scary spice as the assistant DA. Think of the possibilies! Law & Order SG(s)this fall on NBC. Okay everyone, enjoy your day. Health and happiness always to each and every one of you. Peace. David Reo
Vintage David Reo Posted by Hello

THE SARAH LEE & JOHNNY HOUR

THE SARAH LEE & JOHNNY HOUR
CREATED BY
DAVID REO



The Sarah Lee & Johnny Hour is a one hour musical, comedy, variety show hosted by Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion. This is a show where social consciousness and environmental issues, though music and comedy, can continue to have a voice. This is a retro styled show based on the format of the old Smothers Brothers and Sonny & Cher Show. Sarah Lee being the comedian and Johnny the straight man. The main set is a replica of the stage at the Guthrie Center in the Old Trinity Church in Housatonic, MA. The church made famous by Sarah lee’s father, Arlo Guthrie, in the Alice’s Restaurant saga. Sarah Lee and Johnny open the show each week center stage with a comedy dialog mixed with political satire leading into their songs with a house band to their right filled with the most eclectic "A" list musicians and vintage 30’s style instruments on the planet. The second main set is a replica of the New York City loft where Woody Guthrie held his weekly hootenannies. Each week there is a segment with a featured name artists selected from the elders of folk, country, blues and bluegrass music, the likes of Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, to the very last of the Mississippi Delta blues legends like Dave Honeyboy Edwards. This is a show that gives respect and spotlights the elders in traditional music, culture and the arts, a show that represents a musical heritage that has been past down through generations, a show that pays tribute to the past yet honors the very best in American traditions presently. There will also be a segment where two new undiscovered artists are spotlighted, where the viewing audience gets to vote on line which artists gets to be included in a weekly hootenanny from the Woody Guthrie loft set at the end of the show. Another segment will include Arlo Guthrie who is beamed in via satellite onto a big screen from exotic locations around the world while on the road, where he talks with Sarah Lee who affectionately refers to him as "Pop". One week he is with Eskimos, the next week he is in the Amazon jungle with birds, the next week he is surrounded by pigmies in Africa. He always has a message. There is also a cowboy poetry segment with Ramblin Jack Elliot reading poetry from a western campfire background. Also included in the weekly cast is are current popular comedians.to work with the comedy sketches that will run between music spotlights. The show also features short independent films and a segment where Sarah Lee performs with children. The show always ends with Sarah Lee and Johnny, the featured artists and the new "discovered" undiscovered artist on the Woody Guthrie New York City Loft set where they all have a "hootenanny" an intense jam session of Woody Guthrie songs. Sarah Lee and Johnny always end the show upbeat and with the message of peace. This show is an American Classic.

Friday, May 20, 2005

IF THE VIDEO CLIPS DON'T WORK HERE

Hello, if the video clips don't work here, go to www.ourmedia.org and search David Reo. This will have to do until I figure out the glitch. Thank You. David Reo

Saturday, May 14, 2005

The Preachers Blues Band -Click Photo For A Video (7.8MB)

The Preachers Blues Band Posted by Hello


This is a classic photo of The Preachers outside of a club in Studio City, CA. The line up that night was Brian Batchley- Vocals & Harmonica, Joe Westbrook- Guitar, (me) David Reo -Guitar & Vocals, Eric Monteith- Bass, & Kevin Huddleson-( From The Fixtures) Drums & Vocals

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Happy Days Memories

Here are some excerpts from my Happy Days Memories
1. Working on Happy Days was awesome. It was a great experience especially at that time of my life. Every week there was this exciting build up for show time on Friday night when they filmed the episode. Not tape. Film. The production booth was right above the studio audience on the set. I only have good things to say about the cast and the Producers. Gary Marshall didn't actually work on a daily basis with the writing staff. He was usually over seeing everything from his office which was across the street. I only remember Gary Marshall coming in on one episode. I think it was the Thanksgiving episode. It wasn't going well and I can remember Gary Marshall coming in and everyone had to stay extra late and re-write the entire script. That only happened once! Which is amazing. The good thing about staying late was they sent out for dinner next door at a restaurant called Nickodell's. So I ate well on Table nights. Table nights were usually Wednesday night. I didn't really socialize with the cast. I was more with the writers, Fred Fox Jr. & Brian Levant mainly. I used to have breakfast with Ron Leavit in the commissary. He later went on to create the show Married With Children. He always drank a coca cola even early in the morning at breakfast. I can remember hanging out back stage and talking with Henry Winkler. He said, "You always have to have a gesture like Thumbs up" and then he did his Thumbs Up. He told me to always remember that when I write. Years later like 1984, I was recording music so I sent Henry Winkler my demo. He was nice enough to call me back and tell me he liked it. I thought that was cool. I did go to Anson Williams Bachelor Party at this fancy Chinese restaurant in Beverly Hills. I got there early and it was just me and Tom Bosley so we went for a walk all around Beverly Hills. We just talked general talk. He was very nice. A mellow Mr. C. I can remember Marion Ross being and looking a lot younger than Mrs. C. Just general stuff. I can remember that Gary Marshall had a milk shake machine in his office. Jerry Paris was cool. He was in high gear on Friday nights. Now a days the Producers and Directors have their own booths off stage during the tapings. Everything is tape and monitors. Back then it was the old days. Old school. It was nice to experience that. Jerry Paris was on the floor with the actors and camera crew. It was cool to be on the floor during filming. I kind of felt like I was in the way though. Like yo there is a camera coming at me at fifty miles an hour. Usually I was in the booth. I can remember being on the floor for the Fonzie goes blind episode and Joanie smoking episodes. Like right on the floor as they filmed. It was cool. Friday nights were a blast. At this time in my life I am writing music now. The last show I wrote scripts for was The Blossom Show.
The Cunningham's house set and the Arnold's set were right next to each other. Arnold's was in the center and the Cunningham's was to the right if you faced the stage. They were separate sets on the same floor. Any other sets that were used or built for the week were to the left of the stage. Sometimes they used the Arnold's area for big scenes. The bathroom set was on wheels and it was rolled in. Fronzie's Bedroom was to the left of Arnold's but it wasn't always up.. I have a very successful brother, Don Reo, who has created many hit TV shows. Back in those days he had gone from Rhode Island on to work in TV as a writer in Hollywood. He is ten years older than I am. So he left for Hollywood and became successful. I was still a kid. My father really wanted me to follow in my brothers footsteps. It was his dream to see both our names together on TV. I felt that I had to prove to my father that I could do it. All along I was doing music too. So when I was eighteen I left for Hollywood. My Brother got me a job as a production assistant on this show called MacNamara's Band Starring John Byner and a then undiscovered actor Joey Pantoliano. In fact Joey didn't even have a car. I remember giving him a ride home from the sets. That show was created by Jeff Harris & Bernie Kukoff (who later went on to create the show Different Strokes) That only lasted for one season. I was unemployed soon after so I decided to stay home and write. I wrote about twelve speculation scripts and sent them to agents all over Hollywood. Luckily for me big talent agencies also had apprentice agent programs at that time and this apprentice agent from Creative Artists Agency, Stephanie Brody, picked up on my scripts. She was just starting out and was hungry to work and so was I. They signed me onto Creative Artists and She sent my scripts over to Happy Days. Walter Kempley read a Fish episode that I wrote on spec and they set up an appointment to meet with me. When I went to the meeting he hired me on the spot. They hired me, Alan Goldstien, who wrote the Halloween episode, and Jeff Franklin went to Laverne & Shirley. Jeff later went on to create Full House. I did it without my brother's help. That was huge for me personally because I had this shadow over me most of my teen years. Walter Kempley had no idea who my brother was at that time even though he was producing Mash that year. However my father had past away and never saw any of this happen. Later on in life I worked for my brother on Blossom and both our names were up there on the screen so My Dad did get his wish. It just took fifteen years.
I remember joining the Happy Days baseball team but I never did get to play. I have a Happy Days baseball shirt with my name on it in my closet. I remember Happy days played Star Trek out on some small baseball field in Burbank. No huge crowd of press or fans were there. Just friends and the casts. It was pretty amazing seeing Captain Kirk and Sulu up to bat. I think Marion Ross pitched. I can remember going to Baseball practice at North Hollywood Park and I hung out with Donny Most. Out of all the Happy Days cast he was the one (in my opinion) that was not at all like his character. He was very serious.
Did you know Gary & Penny Marshall have a sister who was a producer on Happy Days? Her name is Ronnie Hallin. She looks just like Penny Marshall.
I remember getting a Christmas Card from Ron Howard that year.
Is that a nice guy or what?
Did you know I sold a story to Happy Days that never got filmed?
It was called, " Fonzie's Jacket". Someone stole his jacket and for his birthday Richie decided to get him a new one but they needed his exact measurements because Fonzie was so fussy about it, so they had to sneak into his apartment and try to get his measurements while he was sleeping. The producers liked it, they bought it and it never saw the light of day.
My first joke that got in was a sight gag on the Tornado show where someone says, "Grab Something Heavy" and Ralph grabs professor Himmel. Did you know Jerry Paris was Jerry the dentist on the Dick Van Dyke show? Dick Van Dyke's neighbor?
Did you know Walter Kempley was a writer on The Dick Van Dyke Show and if I am not mistaken so was Gary Marshall.
Walter Kempley had moved to Paris, France. They called him back to work on Happy Days. He looked like a German/French guy. Tall, gray hair, glasses. I remember he smoked Dunhill cigarettes with a cigarette holder at the table. I could picture him in a smoking jacket like Hugh Heffner. Bob Brunner was the opposite. He wore jeans and a blue t-shirt. He was on a liquid diet. I never saw him eat. Bob Brunner reminded me of Fonzie. Those two sat together at the head of the table. Holly White was Bob's secretary and sometimes she sat in with us. She was very funny and attractive. Blonde hair. Built. She had a nice laugh that made everyone else laugh. She later went on to write quite a few episodes.
I sat between to Brian and Ron and sometimes Beverly Bloomberg and across from Fred Fox Jr. and Michael Loman.Some times Bob Howard. Fred also did the warm up act with the studio audience on Friday nights. He was really funny. Quick witted. Brian Levant was amazing too. He could come in late to a meeting and know exactly what page and what line we were on and not only did he know that, he would have a joke or a change to put in. He had the scripts memorized within an hour. We worked on three scripts a week. Brian always brought toys and gadgets to the table. Tops and wind up toys. Fred had a nerf ball basketball set up in his office and we played a lot of nerf basketball while Ron Howard was out back playing real basketball. Just out the door and down the back stairs.
I remember the magic show. Walter Kempley was friends with The Amazing Randi. That is how they got him. Yes, there was an element of risk for Henry to do the milk can trick.
Inside the can was a large empty glass jar with a lid on it. You sit with it between your legs. When it is unscrewed it fills up with water enough to leave air for the person in the can to breathe. The risk factor was what if Henry could not get the lid off the jar once he was in there. So it was exciting for everyone! He did it once at dress rehearsal and was confident he could pull it off that night. I can remember seeing him come out of it and everyone in the booth was like, "Yes!" It was great. I know the cast did their own tricks. Gary Marshall's kids were in that show too.
Another thing I remember about that show is Bobby Hoffman cast George Fenneman as the MC. and at that time George Fenneman and Tom Bosley had been rivals for broadcasting jobs.
The Potsie Quits School song scene: No, I had nothing to do with it. For me, being a serious musician, I was a little embarrassed over how it came out. Originally I had to pick a song from a list of tunes that were public domain. Meaning Happy Days would not have to pay for the rights. I picked the song, Mack The Knife, and wrote words with that tune in mind. (Singing to Mack The Knife) Oh the heart pumps….. Anson Williams had a music career going at that time and he wanted to write his tune which turned out to be Pumps Your Blood. He vetoed my tune. The bags on Fonzie’s feet came from Fred Fox Jr. Fred was really great with visual comedy. He was like a little kid. We needed one more scene to get Fonzie into the bathroom. That was it. I wish they hired me on too!! Ha ha. I was only twenty at the time. When Walter Kempley found out I was twenty it kind of rubbed him the wrong way for some reason. I don’t know why. After he found out how old I was it was very hard for me to get anything passed. Fortunately Brian, Fred and Bob Brunner liked me. I was lucky to get the Potise Quit School episode on the air. When Bob Brunner and Brian left to do Bad News bears they ended the apprentice writers. I didn’t get hired on.. It took two years to get back into writing
Casting was a department all unto itself. Just like the writers dept and the actors dept.
That was Bobby Hoffman's dept. Casting was across the street from the stage and across another street from Gary Marshall's office on the same side. Bobby Hoffman was a great guy. He passed away. Walter Kempley passed away also. Bobby Hoffman had gray hair and always always always wore a Greek sailors cap and a light blue denim jacket. He was very friendly. I can remember him standing in the doorway looking out to the street on the lot. He always stood in the doorway saying hello to anyone who walked by. Always had a big smile on his face. Casting is an art just like writing. Casting, coaching. It is very close to directing.
There were a lot of steady extras on Happy Days. The Arnold's gang. The guy in the scene driving the car where the girl's wig is pulled off by the convertible? In the titles? He was/is Walter Von. He was in tons of scenes. That girl with the wig, Her name is Heather. The real tall kid in the background always wore a high school sweater, his name is Carrie Schuman. They never had talking lines because they would have to join a whole other union and get paid. There is the screen extra's guild and the screen actors guild. Two different things. Once an actor speaks it means
more money has to be paid out by the studio. That is why so many actors on Happy days did not speak. Like most of Fonzie's girlfriends. They didn't have the budget. And thanks to Bobby Hoffman Fonzie had his girlfriends! A lot of the girl's in the pictures on Fonzie's bedroom wall were the writer's girlfriends and wives. There was a cowboy town right behind my office. I could walk through Dodge city on my lunch break. I did many times. Most of the outdoor sets were actually filmed outside the set builders building. It looks like Fonzie's garage but if you actually go inside there are guys with saws cutting wood for sets. .Ah yep, yep, yep.
Being a musician most of the TV shows that I wrote have a music theme. Like Blossom "Guns in school" episode "38 special" which I wrote and I got a part in too (I'm in the band scene playing guitar) Sometimes one person has an idea and it is given to another person. Like the Christmas show where they all bring a tree in to the Cunnigham's? . That was my idea. Most of the writers were under contract for 3 scripts a year plus a weekly salary (and to get a parking space on the lot was a whole other big deal where your agent has to actually negotiate it.) I had to park outside the lot across the street and pay. (But that is another story.) Show Biz. "The slimey underbelly of the show business world" Anyway, people crank out story ideas and they are all delegated to different writers. The networks want certain story lines, the producers want different story lines, etc etc. So when it says "written by" or "story by" or "teleplay by" it is debatable. They have to assign a story. It is a team effort for the most part. There are exception of course.
Sometimes a writer will pitch an idea based on a theme or direction the producers want to go and it connects and he or she gets to write it. Other times a writer will pitch and idea and they like it and give it to another writer on the staff who is due under contract to get a script that season. Maybe the other writer already did his three scripts. So that being clear, I had already sold the Fonzie Jacket "Story by" that never got filmed. So in the total picture I did get a story and a teleplay.
There were other people that were Production Assistants like Jim Dunne who got "Story By" on Potsie Quits School. Jim Dunne was an all around guy on the Happy Days Crew. Originally I heard he was Gary Marshall's tennis pro. Gary liked him. So He worked with the actors, he wrote music, he came to writing meetings once in a while. He was just an all around guy. Gary Marshall wanted him to write and his first writing assignment was "Story by". It got him in the union.
He was close with the actors. I didn't have the chance to get
too involved like that on the stage. I was hired strictly to be an apprentice writer. In fact I didn't even have my own typewriter. I had to share one with Allen Goldstien. My agent didn't negotiate a typewriter. Now a days you have to have an agent to get an agent. So that is how it works. I liked the idea of being an extra but it never happened. I didn't push for it. I was a musician. I brought my guitar in and Brian and Fred would hear me play and bring me up to Bob Brunner's office. Bob would say, "I don't know what to do with that, go talk to Anson". It just didn't connect for me at that time. I later worked on other shows but it took years and years.
They filmed my show on January 26th, 1979.
It was bitter sweet for me. I went to the filming but I had been laid off at Christmas. Laid off by Gary Marshall himself. There I was at my Hollywood writing & film debut and I was collecting unemployment. It was still a great experience. I still got it, even on unemployment. Ah, yep yep yep.

All in all it was a great experience. It was really a fun time. I'm glad that I can share it with anyone who is interested.
Peace,
David Reo