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Robert Easton – An Appreciation – Nov. 23rd 1930 – Dec. 16th, 2011

Wild Bill Hickok……..this was my immediate impression when my wife Heather, first introduced us. Long white hair and beard, a big, broad, commanding presence and a booming, authoritative baritone voice belied the gentle interior that was at the heart of this man. People often use the term, “bigger than life”, and Robert Easton towered above almost everyone, literally and figuratively.

Genius. Everyone has heard this word used all too casually, too often and not always completely merited by the individual who is accorded this unique status. I have encountered only a handful of true geniuses in my life and he was bona fide. As befitting his nature, his genius was only matched by his humanity, compassion and keenly perceptive eye, ever observant of human nature and life’s frailties.

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Jethro Tull World Tour Program Interview

From the 2007 World Tour

What was your musical background before you joined Jethro Tull?

DP – If you really want to start at the earliest point where I began to be aware of music, I suppose I was about four or five years old. At that point, I was only aware of classical music and some jazz being played around the house. Pop music was really on the periphery of my radar. I didn’t hear the radio much until we moved to New York City, at which point I was given a little $5.00 AM transistor radio and used to scroll through the stations, listening to anything that caught my ear. Suddenly the Beatles burst upon the scene and disrupted my quiet little universe. I literally thought they invented pop music, having had no idea of the rich history that had preceded them.

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Mink Hollow Muse

“Mink Hollow Muse” – A Story and Cornbread Vindaloo Recipe
From, “Give Them Love, Give Them Bread”
An Anthology Of favorite Recipes, In Tribute To The Works Of Todd Rundgren

Some wonderful, vivid memories come to mind when I think of the 6 weeks during a typical New York winter in 1986 that I spent with the colorful, eccentric, unpredictable Todd. I was recording the “Dreams of Ordinary Men” record with the Australian group Dragon, or confusingly, Hunter, as they were named everywhere else in the world except Australia! Todd was producing, playing some guitar and doing some co-writing with the band. We were great admirers of his work and glad that he was interested in working with the band.

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Tale of a Hat

Originally printed by St. Bernard’s, Fall 2004

Doane returned to St. Bernard’s on April 19, 2004, to talk to the boys at Upper School assembly. He spoke about life as a musician, a band member, and composer. Doane described a day in the life of a drummer on tour and all the components of making a successful show. He was thrilled to be back on stage at his alma mater. We are pleased to share the story Doane wrote in honor of the centennial year.


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The Early Years

Hello Readers,

I recently wrote this piece originally for publication in a centenary book for St. Bernard’s, my old alma mater.

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"Reflections" – reprinted from Modern Drummer

Clive Bunker-one of my earliest and most important influences. He was an amazing stylist with a combination of technical facility and feel unlike anything I had ever seen before in rock music and what a great soloist! He played with great sensitivity and dynamics and yet was incredibly powerful when he needed to be. As far as I’m concerned he was the drummer that bridged the playing of Ginger Baker and Billy Cobham. I was surprised when I met him, at his modest, humble nature and the fact that he was largely a self-taught player who had only been playing for a few years when he made the first Jethro Tull record. Ask anyone who saw him live during that period and they will attest to what an indelible mark he left. We have become good friends over the years and I felt very honored when we performed together at a fan convention in Italy with Tull this last summer. We played together and traded solos on one piece, which was really a personal highlight for me. I owe quite a lot to Clive.

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