Ritmo — The Band

Ritmo — The Latin Rock Band

     Over the stretch of a few of years, I became involved in an assortment of different groups, including my own. The group I had organized was named Ritmo, and we were registered with the American Federation of Musicians, local 380. The group consisted of six musicians, which included a lead singer. We played mostly pop rock. Santana tunes were our specialty, because of the Latin flavor I was able to add.


The Latin and Rock Band


     In my rhythm section I had a bass player that also worked for IBM. Since the two of us were in the same band, we drew a large IBM crowd. Part of the crowd that came out to see us was a department manager with some of his subordinates. As he proceeded to get high, he began running up a tab, and orchestrating the party as if he was still on the job. It was obvious he was grandstanding and letting off steam from the stress of his management position. Nobody had to tell him, “Stay thirsty my friend.” Since he was a college grad and a grad from programming school, he was a typical partier, and already well entrenched into yuppiedom. In this case the environment of Binghamton isn’t as urban as the name “yuppie” implies. Make no mistake, however, his behavior is not typical of IBM managers; since the company has a world renown reputation and has remained a leader in the field of technology.


Typical nightclub scene

     When joining the union, I thought I had to perform in front of a panel of other musicians in order to qualify. So the weekend prior to joining, I practiced like my life depended on it. That following week, the test never occurred. It was obvious that all they wanted was their union dues; besides they never helped us find gigs anyway. Moreover, we were also restricted from playing certain clubs, unless we belonged to the inner-circle of the union rank-and-file. Sometime later, I found out that the mob was pulling the strings and had their hands in the till. mini skirt Regardless of their influence, we were still able to obtain several gigs—most of them were due to my previous connections with nightclub owners who knew me from gigging with Vito.
     During the summer seasons of the ’60s and the ’70s, the fashion of mini-skirts was in vogue. I would often think about what did we guys ever do before mini-skirts and short-shorts?

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12 comments on “Ritmo — The Band

  1. I always wanted to play the guitar. A while back my wife bought me a folk guitar. I took a few lessons, but never really got the hang of it. If I had practiced like you, there may have been a better outcome.

    However, I haven’t given up on the idea of playing, If the Lord’s willing, I will give it another try this year. I’m a lefty and the one I have is right handed. So maybe with a left handed one, things may turn out better this time.

    Encouraging post.

    • Sure, give it another go as soon as you get fitted up. Don’t overlook the possible chance that maybe the Lord has you gifted for another instrument. In any case, it’s a good part time hobby. Remember, I get addicted to this sort of stuff, so I wind up putting lots of effort in it. In fact, too much, with consequences that will be detailed later.

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