Gary Wilson Talks About NYC and His New AlbumPosted by Derek Keeling
Legendary madman-turned-recluse-turned-soul-jazz-maverick Gary Wilson discussed his relationship with New York City, his new album Feel The Beat and an odd assortment of other factoids with Examiner.com.
Wilson reminisces: “I was born and raised in a small town in upstate New York (Endicott). Always was fascinated with the big city (NYC). Wanted to move there since I was 8 years old. When I was very young, my mother, sister, and I would every now and then take bus trips from Endicott to NYC. After I graduated from high school, Blind Date guitarist Vince Rossi (Rizzo) and I attempted to move to NYC. I was 17 years old. I had $100 in cash which went quickly as we spent a night or two at the YMCA on the upper west side. Ended up sleeping in Washington Square for a few nights. It was summertime and the city was hot and muggy. We finally decided we were too young to survive in the city and decided we had enough. Vince and I walked for hours from lower Manhattan to the Washington Bridge. It was 2 or 3 in the morning when we finally walked across the Washington Bridge. In other words, it’s always a treat to come and perform in New York City.”
On April 20th, Gary Wilson reunites with the Blind Dates for a concert at Brooklyn’s Glasslands.
Wilson discussed the occasion, with a hint of nostalgia: “It’s always fun to get together with the original Blind Dates. What better way to get together with your old friends then doing a gig with them. We grew up together. Went to the same schools. Hung out together. Played in bands with one another. The band for the Glasslands show features drummer Gary Iacovelli who you hear on some of the tracks from my album You Think You Really Know Me and Another Galaxy. Guitarist Vince Rossi (Rizzo) who has been performing with me since we were 13 years old. Greg McQuade (keyboards) is featured on some of my early recordings and Butch Bottino on bass who also has played on some of my early recordings. The band still lives in the Endicott area (the sound of Endicott, New York),”
With Gary Wilson, sometimes, nostalgia is the inspiration, even Sandra Dee can lead to inspiration: “After the release of Electric Endicott I was sitting in my room watching TV, feeling kind of depressed when the film A Summer Place came on. This film features Sandra Dee. As you may know, one of my songs from Lisa Wants To Talk To You is called “Sandy”.You see the connection. Seeing Sandra Dee on my television set brought me back to reality and inspired me to start my new project, which became Feel The Beat. Sometimes all it takes is the thought of Sandra Dee (or Linda, Karen, Lugene, Cheryl, etc.) to get me inspired.”
When pressed for an answer on what his hopes for the album’s release would be, Wilson replied: “I always hope for the best when I release an album. Each album I put out is like having a baby. There is the thrill in the beginning, then the sweat and hard work you put into the project, followed by a slight depression after the release is over.”