Jeff Pike

Our Promise To Hugo….Jeff Pike ‘Frozen Gringo’ 2015 House Concerts

Posted by on Dec 29, 2014

A Note From The Front Office By Kathy Mullen     Our Promise To Hugo….. Jeff Pike ‘Frozen Gringo’ House Concerts in 2015 As we wind down the Christmas season and get ready for 2015 I find myself reflecting on important events in my life that occurred in 2014.  The one that had the most impact was the passing of my dear friend, Hugo Duarte.  Going back a little further, it was in December 2011 when I first started receiving phone calls from Hugo telling me about his new project with Jeff Pike, The Frozen Gringos. He went on in great detail about how excited he was and that their first tour was starting in January of 2012. He then asked if they could stay at my house for awhile when they were in town. I graciously accepted.  For the next two years I had the opportunity to witness many Frozen Gringo concerts and got to know both Hugo and Jeff very well. I saw them play live many times and each time was like the first. When Hugo and Jeff were on stage together there was an energy that was felt and commented on by virtually everyone who saw them perform. The difference in each musician’s voice, narration and approach to their music, blended to make a noticeably unique performance and musical style. The Frozen Gringos released their first and only CD, ‘Chill Before Use’ in October of 2013.  On November 7, 2014 Hugo lost his battle to Esophageal Cancer. While in conversation to both Jeff and I during the last weeks of his life Hugo let it be known how vitally important it was to him that his music be kept alive. We both promised Hugo that we would honor his wishes and do our absolute best. In moving forward with that promise Jeff will continue to donate 100% of the CD sales of ‘Chill Before Use’ directly to Hugo’s daughter, Sarah Duarte Billings. This money will help her with all of the expenses left solely to her upon Hugo’s departure and to help maintain Hugo’s websites so the world can continue to enjoy his music. In addition to CD sales Jeff is looking to schedule select House Concert dates this year around his A1A and Abba Mania schedule in honor of Hugo and the music they made together. These performances will consist of Jeff’s versions of...

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Seven Years On – In Memory of Dan Fogelberg

Posted by on Dec 16, 2014

  On May 4, 1978 at an evening High School Mixer in Mobile, Alabama, at the ripe old age of 16 I first heard the music of Dan Fogelberg. There is no way I could have known that night what an effect this event would have on my music, my spirit and my path of  life. From the very first song I heard ( There’s A Place In The World For A Gambler ) I felt like I had been hit by a ton of bricks. I promptly wondered, “Why have I not heard this mans music before?” I immediately took it upon myself to absorb every lyric, note and passage of every piece of music Mr. Fogelberg had released up to that point. I am still as much a fan today as I was then and Dan’s music is never far from my life, lips and guitar. Seven years ago today we lost an artist who touched many souls, hearts and lives. Not only because of his extreme God given talent, but because he stayed true to himself. In an industry that promotes shallow, mediocre and disposable art as genius, Dan Fogelberg dug deep into his own life experiences and gave us timeless music we all could relate too. Sometimes you had to think and sometimes it was painful. But it was real. Unfortunately, that kept some people away. He studied, read and nurtured his intellect, and his soul. And although he was a very private man, he was not afraid to bare his heart for the world to see. In doing so he gave us art in the medium of pop music. Something that is rare, if not completely non existent today. Something that will live on. Dan was a great influence on my music, my life and my journey. And he is still greatly missed. Many thanks to Jean Fogelberg for all the recent work she has put into updating Dan’s website.   Jeff Pike www.danfogelberg.com December 16,...

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An A1A Update for 2015

Posted by on Dec 4, 2014

Greetings A1A Friends and Fans Old and New, As the old year winds down with a new one fast approaching, I am feeling a lot of emotions about my past 23 years with A1A. The importance that A1A has played in the birth of the enormous and still growing Parrot Head and Trop Rock Community still fills me with pride. The fact that the band, and myself, have managed to last this long is also something I am very proud of. Especially in the declining state that the music industry has been in for quite some time now. Yes, I have seen much come and go since I first joined, and then started performing, for The Atlanta Parrot Head Club (The very first club for those not in the know) way back in 1989. And while there is much I could probably complain about, I sit here today writing you with much thankfulness, gratefulness, enthusiasm and awareness. I am very thankful for all of the people who have stuck with the band through thick and thin for the past 23 years. I am also quite grateful to all of the band members and behind the scenes people that have helped keep this machine rolling during their time aboard. We have moved fast and we have moved slow, but we have always managed to keep the wheels rolling. Of course, occasionally a wheel would roll off and we would crash. So yes, some members have come and gone. But I have learned that if you are really going to grow, as an individual and as a business, then change is inevitable and it should be looked at in a positive light. Not being one keen on change I have always had difficulty with that concept. But it seems that with each incarnation of the band we manage to find a new level for us to aspire to. It keeps things periodically fresh, new and has brought to all of us our own personal and professional challenges for growth. Be that as it may, it is with mixed emotions when I say this is where I sit with A1A on the brink of 2015. 2014 was a year of great personal and professional change in my life and in the life of A1A.I will tell you that in many aspects of my professional life I feel that I have been drifting...

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Taking To The Road With Abba Mania

Posted by on Oct 13, 2014

Taking To The Road With Abba Mania

  One of the craziest and coolest things about being in the music business is that you never know what is going to be around the next corner. For a lot of people this kind of lifestyle would drive them crazy, but for those of us brave enough (being kind here) to choose music for living, sometimes the unexpected can be a thrill. Of course many times the surprises have a lot to be desired. But then again sometimes they can arrive completely out of the blue and take you on a memorable ride of a lifetime. By a fluke, last winter I was offered the spot as “Benny” in the American Cast of “Abba Mania – The Worlds #1 Touring Abba Tribute Show” My drummer and friend in A1A, Wayne Viar had been touring with Abba Mania during our off season and was telling me of his experience with the band when we reconvened for 2013/2014 A1A rehearsals. Admittedly, he was a little perplexed at my excitement, interest and by the fact that I knew and loved all the songs. At the end of our conversation I informed him that should a fill in spot ever come up that I would be very interested. Neither of us taking it very seriously we forgot about it and got down to A1A business. About 2 months later my phone rang. It was Wayne. “Uhh…hey man…do you remember when you told me that should a spot ever become available in Abba Mania that you would be interested? Uhh…well…were you serious?” Next thing I know, I am traveling the country in a huge tour bus and playing to sold out crowds in some of the most beautiful and classic mid sized theaters in the country, with some of the nicest and most talented people I have ever had the pleasure to work with. I never dreamed in a million years that I would be having this kind of experience playing the music of Abba. Music which by the way, I have loved dearly all of my life. This was without a doubt and unexpected dream come true. Well, I am happy to say that I will be returning with the band for the Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 North American Tour. To be playing the piano again and bringing “Benny Andersson” to life onstage every night has been a rare treat for...

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SERV International – Guest Blog by Kathy Mullen

Posted by on Oct 9, 2014

SERV INTERNATIONAL – www.servone.org THE MISSION – “Giving people the opportunity to make a difference” is a statement that holds true to this very day about who and what SERV International is.  SERV began in May 2000 building outreach centers, churches and meeting spaces in Mexico. We found out in the early years that people were looking for opportunities to serve others and get involved in things that made a difference.  Years later, SERV expanded into the Dominican Republic, continuing to give others the opportunity to make a difference through various outreach projects and mission trips that were geared toward creating a Christ-centered experience for the Dominican people, as well as for each person serving.  In 2006, SERV’s founder Steve Kasha and another team member were on a plane to Africa for the very first time with eyes wide open looking for what God would have them to do. Little did they know that years later, SERV would have an orphanage in the northwest corner of Kenya that would house 40 children. Because of the famine and drought, SERV also started a large-scale feeding program that has now distributed over 7 million meals in Kenya. The purpose of this food is to reach the places we can and use it as a platform to share Christ with those who have not heard the Gospel. We recognize that we cannot save the world or everyone in Kenya; however, we can share a message and a meal with those we serve.”  _________________________________________________________   I have found through personal experience that it is interesting for me to try and write about something that I have not yet experienced first-hand. For some it is easy and for some it is impossible. For me it is somewhere in the middle. So with that said. Here goes…. I was introduced to SERV International by means of an unexpected gift.  Sometimes people or unplanned circumstances show up in your life and change your thoughts, and your path.  Infrequent, but it can and does happen. Because of this unexpected gift I can now say that while I have never had a mission trip on my ‘bucket list,’ before, I do now. Jim Vinyard is the Director of SERV International.  After spending an entire afternoon reading about SERV on the website (www.servone.org ) it was easy to ascertain that Jim Vinyard is quite a remarkable and intriguing man, and...

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A Fly On The Wall – Guest Blog by Kathy Mullen

Posted by on Sep 17, 2014

A fly on the wall story of music production…. By Kathy Mullen Mullen Music Management kemullen@mchsi.com   The Front Office took over for a moment to share a couple of thoughts… The vantage point of being around a musician can provide amazing and new insight into things you might not otherwise think about. For example, what it actually takes to produce a $15 CD. Now that I have, I’d like to share it with you. Speaking as someone who is not a musician, I continue to be fascinated with great talent and everything that comes from that; energy, emotion, drive, inspiration, vulnerability, patience and the ungodly amount of time that goes into writing, rehearsing, recording and performing music. I have had the incredible pleasure of being closely involved with the production of two CD’s at different levels and from two Independent Singer/Songwriters over the past year. It was a unique experience which I will always treasure. While going through the actual process, it didn’t really occur to me just how much goes into the making of a professional CD. It wasn’t until much later when the deadlines were met, the product was finished and the CDs were finally in the hands of the fans, that I took time to reflect. The two CD’s are ‘BACK TO BASICS’ by Jeff Pike and ‘CHILL BEFORE USE’ by The Frozen Gringos. Please note that these are my own thoughts and observations, not those of the artists. MY PERCEPTION AT THE BEGINNING. It all began with making decisions on which songs to record. Songs that, once produced, would live on as a legacy for the artists and be played for years to come. Jeff’s CD was easy; the plan was to focus on material that was stripped down, organic and emotional. This material would show those who only know him as part of A1A, that he is capable of so much more. Jeff thinks outside the box while showing great diversity in the work that he does. The Frozen Gringo’s CD is another story. First and foremost, it took an enormous amount of consistent perseverance on Jeff’s part to finally convince Hugo to record the CD, which became ‘CHILL BEFORE USE.’ A lot of persuasion over a long period of time finally paid off when Hugo ultimately consented. Working on the material on both CD’s took a tremendous amount of time in each...

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