AFRO-AMERICAN MUSIC INSTITUTE CELEBRATES 36 YEARS
Pain Relief Beyond Belief
As I sit here in the early hours of the morning I still can't get over the passing of my close friend and bandmate Richard "Dick" Vitalie. Yes folks I am a musician as well but I don't sit in as a vocalist or percussionist with folks here for many reasons. Lack of talent is definately not one of them. His going home service is today.
I was a member of Stick Against Stone back in the early 80's while I took a short leave from WYEP. I was asked to join the band at the urging of Dick, the late John Creighton and other band members. I sang, played percussion and also played trombone and trumpet. The band was actually the "first" world beat band from Pittsburgh. We never got a big recording contract, we were all activists. I helped organize Rock Against Racism events here in Pittsburgh and also the Rock Against Reagan tour.
About three months ago, Richard had moved back east after living in the Bay Area for over 20 years. We played together in Indiana, PA a few days before he moved to Brooklyn. It was like we had never stopped playing together. I hadn't touched any instruments in over 6 years. We were in synch just like that. Many of you know that feeling. Recently we had started talking about a studio project that would have been a reunion of the band. Over the last three years a lot of us have part of the documentary being done about John Creighton that Will Kreft is working on. I am going to miss my friend on this side but he will always be with us.