The Mixed Emotions
The 60s were a great time in music and a great time to play music. Garage bands were playing on every block. Hard rock, soft rock, country rock, ballads, and bubble gum music were all there at the same time.
I joined the Mixed Emotions (Denny, Dave, and Bob) in July of 1967. Denny played bass, Dave played lead guitar, and sang lead vocals, Bob played drums, and Mike played keyboard. I was 14 years old and Dave was just 13. After a few months of practice, our first gig was at My Place, a night club in Ottawa, Ohio. It didn’t go well with the owner, so we moved down the road to Hoyt’s Tavern, and it went great.
In 1967, our manager, Bill Buntin, thought we were getting great, recorded us playing songs on his reel-to-reel tape recorder. We played songs for an hour! In late 1969, he got that tape out and played it for us. I wish I had that tape today!
Over the years we played night clubs, fraternity parties, and teen centers.
In 1968, we wrote our first songs- “My Backdoor” and “Search my Heart”- and recorded them that year. Bill Buntin took the time to find us a label. To record, you must join the musician’s union, and you must have a union label. If you didn’t have those things, your songs wouldn’t be played on the radio. You also needed to find a recording studio, a company to press the record, and promotion and distribution. Bill found us a union label that rented us the entire side of a Best Western Motel so we could practice. They paid for the entire recording session, and paid to have the records pressed. We were a young band, 14 and 15 years old, and this was a major accomplishment!
The next year, in 1969, we wrote and recorded two more songs for the same label: “Thru the Looking Glass” and “Live Today.”
We had four great years of playing together. Our last job together was in the fall of 1970 in Findlay, at the Hancock County Fair.