It took me almost four years to write my book.
It would have been a whole lot easier to recount nearly 30 years in the business if I had kept a journal. Fortunately, there are organizations such as IMDB (International Movie Data Base) where I was able to go and find a record of nearly every movie I was involved with and I was able to reconnect with people I worked with over the years who sparked memories of those years. There were times when I thought I would never finish the book but my wife, Linda, reminded me that this was a life that my son never knew. He was not quite three years old when I left Los Angeles and the music business.
I mention this because I just attended a family reunion. It was bittersweet because my brothers and I have become the “old” family. We have lost both sets of grandparents, parents, uncles and (except for one who is 100 years old) aunts. In the past few years I have lost a brother, three sister in laws and a nephew. We found ourselves answering questions about how it was to grow up with these family members our nephews and nieces barely remembered and they were curious about their parents growing up. There is no IMDB for family stories. I had the same feeling as I had writing the book. How many times I had heard stories from my grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles at all the family gatherings when I was a kid. Those stories went back to my grandparents who shortly after they arrived in San Francisco from Italy survived the great earthquake and fire. Why didn’t I write them down? This younger generation is so curious about their family history and yet they can only get it in bits and pieces from our memories. I’m not saying that we should all write books, but we owe it to our kids to leave them as much of a written record as we can about us and their relatives. If there is such a thing as immortality it’s in the part of my parents that lives on in me and the part of me that lives on in my son…but that’s not enough. Leave as much of a written record of the past as you can and that will be the greatest gift you can leave…your greatest legacy.