“How music brought us together and led us to our first RLC.”

Some of you may have heard this story, but I always enjoy passing it on.

My Mom raised us with an appreciation for music. From early childhood, most of my brothers and sisters took piano lessons every week, but the only one who carried on with his dream was my older brother Mike. He had two advantages over the rest of us. First, his hands were larger than the rest of us, which made playing chords easier. And, he had the ability to play by ear. He could hear music and visualize the notes to learn songs.

In the late Seventies, he joined a band called Ollie Ryce. The band did have some success in the Chicago area, playing clubs and such. They also were part of the very first Loopfest concert, sponsored by local radio station WLUP. And they also had one of their original songs recorded and released on radio station WKQX”s Hometown Album Volume II.

That being said, Back on December 27, 1980 I ventured to a local club in Elgin, IL called the Warehouse to see the band play. This was one of their normal stops since most of the band members had been raised in Elgin.
On this particular night I noticed a pretty blonde young lady sitting with a person I knew to be the girlfriend of one of the guitarists. I couldn’t take my eyes off of her, but I couldn’t bring myself the courage to ask her to dance. Eventually, and probably 4 or 5 beers later, I did ask her to dance near the end of the last set. We talked for awhile and made arrangements to meet the next weekend at the same place to see the band play again. Little did we know, that chance meeting, would lead to a 40+ year love affair with my wife Dale.

That story leads to this one. After our kids all got out of high school, we had more time for ourselves so we started going to see the bands we love play live. In 2012 for our 30th anniversary we decided to try and see at least on concert each month. we actually ended up with 15 including seeing 38 Special in June. Dale was so impressed with them, it was the first time we had seen them live, that she wanted me to see if they were playing anywhere near us again. So I pulled up their web page to check their tour schedule. They weren’t playing close to us, but I did see that they were playing on this Rock Legends Cruise thing. Not knowing what this was, I searched the net and found the cruise website. I showed it to Dale and we were very intrigued by this cruise. We checked it out, but we couldn’t swing the funds at that time. But we kept our eyes open and when they announce RLC III and we discovered we could book and make payments we decided we had to go. We have been hooked ever since. We’ve met some of the most outstanding people from all over the world, and haven’t missed one since, and don’t intend to miss one in the future.

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