My Music   



Welcome to the music portion of

This page contains info on my 3 CD releases and if you scroll down, you can actually hear the songs, including the tracks from my 3rd CD- Something To Think About.


The page also contains info on the radio stations around the world that have played the CD's and you can even find reviews of the music.

It also contains info on the book I've written (which is now in its 6th printing) entitled The Chicago Music Scene: 1960s and 1970s.

If that's not enough, you can scroll down even further and check out my entire 50 year long music career through a myriad of mostly embarrassing pictures.

 I like to think my music is accessible to people. By sharing all this with you I hope you can have a nice experience listening to my tunes. Suggestion: listen to them at.... a party! While you're driving to work! Or even while you're playing.......Poker! Anyway, I hope you like what you hear and let me know if you do....or don't.

The book is now available directly through me- $24.00 postpaid, check, money order or Paypal- or, you can buy it at most major bookstores.

Send to:

Dean Milano

362 Highland Ave.

Elmhurst, Il.  60126

Additional Book Photos  for the Chicago Music Scene of the 1960s and 1970s.


November 22nd, 2009 at the Abbey Pub in Chicago.

The Chicago Music Scene book launch party took place.

And what a party it was!

76 musicians from the book were on hand signing autographs.

At a quick glance, I'm seeing Elliott Delman, Annie Hat, Ruth Tobias, Jimy Rogers, Jimy Sohns, Annie Schwartz, (myself), Alejo Poveda, Chris Shannon, Amy Lowe, Jeannie Lambert, Greg Cahill, Marc Edelstein, Ronnie Rice, Tony Smith, Muriel Anderson, Greg Trafidlo, etc., etc.,.....


The CD's (or albums, as I like to call them):

The third album is officially finished after more than two years of blood, sweat and fun! I am now taking orders and can ship immediately. Price is $15 postpaid or $35 for all three CDs.

We can no longer  accept credit cards

Check, money order or Paypal to:

Dean Milano

362 Highland Ave.

Elmhurst, Il.   60126


 The titles of the albums:

Songs About Stuff

Vestiges: More Songs About More Stuff

Something To Think About

Or how about this? For an extra $5 ($20 postpaid) you can custom make your own album. Go through the more than 50 songs on this page and choose which ones you'd like on your album. Pick as many or as few as you like, as long as it doesn't total more than 80 minutes worth of music.



(If you thought my first CD had little or no commercial potential......this one's got even less!)


My latest CD- Something To Think About-is now for sale! A stocking stuffer of 15 all new songs just as obscure and lacking in commercial potential as the last two CDs. I guess I'll never learn.   Oh well.

Much thanks to the friends and musicians who donated their time and talents to this project:

Paul Heinz, Jordi Kleiner, Jay Whitehouse, Russ Ward, Greg Trafidlo, Ken Slauf, Cathy Robel, Dave Ivaz, Debra Jett and Mat Irvine

The lyrics to the songs are at the very bottom of this page. Scroll down!


Now available- Dean Milano's Greatest Non-Hits!

The Songs the Radio Dared to Play


Dean's Favorites

Yes, believe it or not, some of my tunes did get radio airplay. In fact over 300 songs have been played on 120 stations at the time of this writing.

So, now you can get a compilation CD of the fifteen songs, five from each CD, which have received the most airplay.

The songs included are:

Take the Blue Highway

Beer Cans & Beanie Babies

Flashes of Brilliance

Forever Children

New Politico Cha-Cha

Google My Number

 Life is Like a Plastic Model Kit

Up Wisconsin Way

Rock n Roll Detour

One Golden Moment

Built On Mistakes

Somethin’ I Was Thinkin’ About 

Keepers of the Highway

And Then We Move On

Bad News Comin


And believe it or not, as much as I love all the tunes I write, I actually have favorites, too.

Flashes of Brilliance

Take the Blue Highway

Jim and the Big Bruiser

Time Machine

Rock ‘n Roll Detour

Just Hold On

Louisiana Road Trip  

My Heart is Breaking            

Up Wisconsin Way

Stories From The Road (Mother & Child)

My Real Grandpa

Keepers of the Highway

And Then We Move On

Bonus Tracks:

Just Another Whiney Song (New version)

Dewmaine (Never released)

The Last Song That I Wrote (Never released)

When Did Class Become Crass (Never released)


Hey, I actually set up a MySpace page and a Facebook page!  Check it out if you get a chance:

My Space




Songs About Stuff


1. Flashes of Brilliance    3:13

Dean Milano: Vocal and electric bass

Dennis Gordon : Keyboards, guitar and mandolin

Inspiration: John Nash

Lyric Tweakers: Pat Cannon and Greg Trafidlo

"Memorable hook a pleasing, convincing voice." - Dan Navarro Lowen and Navarro

"Nice singing.... I like it!"  - Gayle Ellett Owner of Firepool Records and HC Productions.


2. Take the Blue Highway   3:17

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and upright bass

Greg Trafidlo: Guitar and vocals

Greg Cahill: Banjo

Peter Seman: Fiddle

Dennis Gordon : Mandolin

Inspiration: William Least Heat Moon

"Now THAT'S a good song!" - Paul Craft Nashville songwriter and publisher


Because the album is now finished and for sale, the following songs are only sample versions instead of full cuts. Click on the song title for the sample play:

3. Forever Children, Children Forever   3:15

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar, percussion and electric bass

Julianne Macarus: Violins

Dennis Gordon : Guitar and mandolin

Inspiration: The War Du Jour

This song actually peaked at #171 on Neil Young's Living With War Today website. Probably doesn't sound like much, but that was out of over 3,500 songs.


4. Livin' the Good Life  3:17

Dean Milano: vocals, guitar and accordion

Dennis Gordon : Mandolin, piano

Inspiration: My family


5. Just Another Whiney Song      Version 1       3:16

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Dennis Gordon: Piano and vocal

Dave Kovnat: Drums

Patrick Cannon: Additional lyrics

Inspiration: The world in general

Version 2

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Dennis Gordon: vocal

Dave Kovnat: Drums

Scott Braam: Guitar

Inspiration: The world in general


6. Jim and the Big Bruiser  3:51

Dean Milano: Vocal and upright bass

Don Stiernberg: guitars  

Dennis Gordon: Mandolin

Inspiration: Jerry Farrow


7. The New Politico Cha-Cha   3:17

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Dennis Gordon : Keyboards

Dave Kovnat: Drums and percussion  

Amberlee Haynes: Vocals

Inspiration: The evening news


8. Time Machine  3:46

Dean Milano: Vocal, guitar and upright bass

Greg Trafidlo: Guitar and mandolin

Julie Macarus: Violin and viola

Inspiration: Milwaukee , Wisconsin

"....very beautiful. Lovely, lovely, lovely." Michael Smith Singer/songwriter/recording artist


9.Good Ol' Boys from Mars   5:07

Dean Milano: Vocal, guitar and electric bass

Dennis Gordon : Guitar, keyboards and mandolin

Scott Braam: Guitar and spaceship

Dave Kovnat: Drums and percussion

Inspiration: Everyone I don’t agree with  


10. You're in the Middle of Nowhere 4:20

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Scott Braam: Guitar

Dennis Gordon: Guitar and mandolin

Amberlee Haynes: Vocals

Inspiration: A couple of misplaced Chicagoans


11. Panama City   2:40

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar, percussion and electric bass

Dennis Gordon : Ukelele and keyboards

Inspiration: A trip to Mexico , 1971


12. Catalog Doll   5:03

Dean Milano: Vocal, guitar, upright bass, and percussion

Peter Seman: Harmonica

Dennis Gordon : Mandolin

Inspiration: A gal from Pennington Gap , Virginia


13. Beer Cans and Beanie Babies 3:31

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar, and electric bass

Greg Cahill: Banjo

Dennis Gordon : Mandolin

Dave Kovnat: Drums

Inspiration: All the would-be millionaires who got stuck with the wrong stuff


14. A Song For Heroes  3:05

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar, percussion and electric bass

Dennis Gordon : Piano

Inspiration: All those who have inspired me


15. Storm is Comin'  3:55

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar, drums and electric bass

Julie Macarus: Violin and viola

Dennis Gordon: Guitar  

Amberlee Haynes: Vocal

Inspiration: The almighty ‘Sing Along’

The video for this song peaked at #15 out of 700 videos on Neil Young's Living With War Video website.


16. Where Did the Music Go?   2:24

Dean Milano: Vocal and upright bass

Don Stiernberg: Guitar

Inspiration: The sad state of affairs today


All songs produced by Dean Milano with Dennis Gordon

All songs copyright 2006, except Panama City 1985

Recording engineer: Scott Braam



Dean Milanos musical sensibilities, humor and craftsmanship are a breath of life to the singer-songwriter world. For years, his chops have been the backbone of some of Chicago's premier bands. Songs About Stuff is his turn to show us his insightful writing, quirky humor, and tasty arranging that have made him the "go to" guy for decades.
Just listen to Dean's killer songs from "Time Machine" to "Beer Cans and Beanie Babies," and you know you're in the presence of a solid song maker in control of his art.
Songs About Stuff is ear candy. Bet you can't listen to it just once!

                             Greg Trafidlo- President- Kira Records and song scribe

Songs About Stuff is full of delightful surprises

                            Eddie O'Strange- Town & Country Radio Show, New Zealand

Thanks so much for the EXCELLENT music.......really enjoyed it!!!!!..
I will be airing it on my shows."

                            Gerd Stassen - Hillbilly Rockhouse radio show- Berlin, Germany

Dean Milano represents an entire cross-section of the independent singer/songwriter community, whether he knows it or not. It's a profile shared by thousands, as Milano writes musical songs, with musical arrangements, about topics that used to be important to music. The lyric's the thing. Milano weaves tales in a melodic but conversational folk style that penetrates and creates friends just through his clear and relative content. I thoroughly enjoyed listening.

                            Don Kimenker -   Founder of

Elmhurst singer-songwriter Dean Milano has been part of The New Seekers and opened for Cab Calloway, but it seems his biggest achievement is his latest CD, Songs About Stuff, which manages to be tuneful, intelligent, sometimes humorous, and well-executed from beginning to end. Milano’s songs are streetwise and smart, a welcome addition to anyone’s collection of troubadours. “Flashes Of Brilliance” is a great song, but any choice here is a winner. 

                            Mike O’Cull - Illinois Entertainer magazine

Dean is not only a fine entertainer, but the music in this CD contains insights into all of the aspects and oddities we see about us in our daily lives.  It truly is an album of songs about stuff!

                            Norman Whitman- Detours Radio Show, WYSO Ohio

I really enjoyed Songs About Stuff. Milano is a very good writer, a good singer and bass player.

                           Steve Hashimoto- News From the Trenches

Have been loving your songs. It's a CD which I know I will enjoy for many years!

                          Nic Culverwell- Manager, The New Seekers and the Bee Gees

There are lots of good songs on your CD... It's hard to decide what to play next...

                         Roman and Brenda- Regina's Mighty Shores Radio Show, Canada

We have played (Songs About Stuff) and think that it is well worth having tracks from the CD included in our playlists. The character of the music style presented gives this CD a unique feel, with an individual personality presented inside it's contents. Great work, and we sure look forward to hearing from you in the future

                         Graham Barclay- Soundwave FM, New Zealand

A superb album and one which deserves all the airplay it can get.

                        Peggy MacNeil - Isles FM, Scotland

Songs about Stuff really caught my attention. I liked the album already from the fresh looks of it and when I played it, it sounded great!! Just keep on going with what you're doing.

                        Paul van Kuik -Radio 0162, Netherlands

It's an excellent album, ........ A very personal style, music of high quality and a perfect voice make for some very great performances on this CD. It's very pleasant to listen to these songs. Thank you for this great CD            

                        Etienne Berthels -Radio Terre Franche, Belgium 

What a great sound you have, I have played several of your tracks to date and plan to schedule more in future programs. Keep up the good work and please keep me up to date with your progress


                        Michael Criddle -   Folk Music radio DJ, Australia


Dean’s music is brilliant! On “Songs About Stuff” (Kira) he sings about declining moral values, the futility and immorality of war, man’s inhumanity to man and love. And he does this in a variety of moods and styles ranging from the bluegrass “Take The Blue Highway” to the emotional “Catalogue Doll” and in-between there is a lot of humour with “Just Another Whiney Song” and “The New Politico Cha Cha”. It is an album that never bores, always delivers something new with each listen and should be mandatory radio play.


                        Pete Smith- The Advertiser magazine- Great Britain


Everyone loves the understated Dean Milano - musically and otherwise.


                        Bill's Blues- Chicago nightclub


Thank you, Dean, for the good music. . I will surely air more tracks on upcoming shows


                        Lilli Kuzma- WDCB Radio


......from "Flashes of Brilliance" to "Where Did All The Music Go?" you can tell the experience from 35 years of song writing. An extraordinary album.


                       Christian Lamitschka -  Editor of Country Home, Germany's Premiere Country Music Magazine


The best STUFF I've heard in a long time. Great beat and musical backing with lyrics that have "meat" to them. Songs often are written about nothing, but Dean Milano writes about real STUFF from his mind and his heart. I drop a song in from his album every show, just to brighten up the program.


                         Darryl Lanyon -  101FM Australia 


My second album is entitled VESTIGES: More Songs About More Stuff. The following 15 songs are from that CD.


VESTIGES REVIEWS (Sorry, I just didn't send this CD out to all that many stations. Hey, it gets expensive!)

Putting emotionally-charged stories to rock music can be tricky, but singer-songwriter Dean Milano does it quite effectively on Vestiges: More Songs About More Stuff. Even “The Scam,” a surprisingly sympathetic portrait of a foreign-based Internet swindler, comes off without a hint of melodrama. Milano is even better on the politically charged “One Golden Moment” and the rollicking ghost story “Rock ‘N’ Roll Detour.” His folksy voice also helps keep Vestiges consistently entertaining.

                       Terrence Flamm - Illinois Entertainer magazine

Vestiges: More Songs About More Stuff is a wonderful journey through diverse songs that will keep you entertained with every turn in musical style, and will leave you fulfilled at each destination portrayed in Dean's clever lyrics.  (DJ's Tops Picks for 2008 and voted 1 of the 3 Top Songwriters for 2008)

                        Mara Noelle - Click Your Heels Together KFOK Radio, California

Dean Milanos songs reflect his extensive background in music in multiple genres, and are sparkling compositions that range from humorous to introspective, solid melodic tunes that cover a wide range of topics. Dean may have played in country and rock bands and jazz combos, and those styles are infused into the music and style here and there, but Dean is a contemporary singer-songwriter in the folk tradition, a troubadour with a mind, a heart, and a soul. His "Vestiges" album is a gem, with a too-modest subtitle, "More Songs About More Stuff." They are songs that I have eagerly shared with the listeners to the Folk Festival show.

                    Lilli Kuzma - Folk Festival on WDCB Public Radio

One Golden Moment         3:23

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass 

Scott Braam: Guitar

Dave Kovnat: Drums

Paul Heinz: Keyboards

Jordi Kleiner: Violin

Inspiration: Why We Fight- a film by Eugene Jarecki


Life is Like a Plastic Model Kit    2:42

Dean Milano: Vocal, guitar and upright bass

Dennis Gordon: mandolin

Inspiration: My 40 year long passion/obssession with plastic model kits.









Dean Milano at Heritage Fest 2009, Downers Grove, Il.


My Heart is Breaking             2:29

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar, accordion, electric bass and percussion

Inspiration: All the great Irish ballads

"Oh my, that is such a pretty song!" - Hazel Dickens, First Lady of bluegrass music.


Ballad of Willie and the Bluegrass Kid   4:18

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Dennis Gordon: Guitar  

Dave Kovnat: Drums

Paul Heinz: Keyboards

Inspiration: Carterville, Illinois- Summer of 1973


Sacrificial Lambs   2:38

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar, electric bass and upright bass

Dennis Gordon: Guitar

Inspiration: Those who would exchange their sanity for their art


Rock 'n Roll Detour     4:01

Dean Milano: Vocals, acoustic and electric guitars and electric bass

Scott Braam: Guitar

Dave Kovnat: Drums

Julie Macarus: Farrah Fawcett vocal

Inspiration: Just day dreaming


Up Wisconsin Way            4:07

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and upright bass

Paul Heinz: Keyboards 

Inspiration: Home, sweet home


The Scam     3:40

Dean Milano: Vocal and guitar, electric bass

Julie Macarus: Violin

Dave Kovnat: Clock

Inspiration: The World Wide Web


Louisiana Road Trip          2:40

Dean Milano: Vocal, accordion, percussion, electric bass and guitar

Russ Ward: Drums

Jordi Kleiner: Fiddle

Inspiration: A 1972 road trip in a VW Beetle


Google My Number          3:57

Dean Milano: Vocal, guitar and electric bass 

Russ Ward: Drums and vocal

Paul Heinz: Keyboards

Jordi Kleiner: Fiddle

Inspiration: A series of unfortunate events


Just Hold On   2:12

Dean Milano: Vocals and guitar

Scott Braam: guitar

Inspiration: A friend of mine who really should have slowed down


Deep in the Muddy


Dean Milano: Vocals and bass

Dennis Gordon: Lead and rhythm guitars, piano

Ted Kendros: Drums

Inspiration: Southern Illinois


You Can Be My Pal


Dean Milano: Vocals and bass

Jan Lewis: Vocals

Dennis Gordon: Lead and rhythm guitars

Ted Kendros: Drums

Inspiration: The ones that got away


You've Been On My Mind So Long (It's Givin' Me a Headache)


Dean Milano: Vocals and bass

Dennis Gordon: Lead and rhythm guitars

Ted Kendros: Drums

Inspiration: An ex-girlfriend


One Night Woman


Dean Milano: Vocals and bass

Dennis Gordon: Lead and rhythm guitars

John Cruz: Drums

Inspiration: A wonderful one night stand


All songs produced by Dean Milano

All songs copyright 2008,(Recording engineer: Scott Braam), except Deep in the Muddy, You Can Be My Pal, You've Been on My Mind So Long, and One Night Woman- copyright 1985 (Recording Engineer: Dennis Gordon)


My third CD is entitled- Something To Think About.

Fifteen new songs, all bright and shiny and ready for listenin'.


Veteran Chicago storyteller, author and songwriter Dean Milano has crafted an album full of characters with stories to tell, and Milano tells them articulately and with feeling á la Canadian songsmith Gordon Lightfoot or American treasure Paul Simon… A sense of humor is essential equipment for a folksinger, and Dean Milano has more than his share… Like much of his music, Milano seems reluctant to leave the past behind, and perhaps it's that sorrowful realization of time marching on that informs his music more than any other emotion.

                    Guy Arnston- Rocking Chicagoland

Dean Milano's new album, "Something To Think About", is a wonderful collection of 'story songs' influenced by real experiences in Dean's life. The music is solidly entertaining and well-produced, and the stories are inspiring, insightful, and interesting. What makes this an especially good listen is the eclectic mix of music styles, and also that some stories go back a number of decades, with the perspective of time providing an added depth to the messages in the material.  "Something to Think About" is definitely something to 'listen to' and is the first album on my "Faves" list of 2011!

                  Lilli Kuzma- host of "Folk Festival" on 90.9fm WDCB Public Radio (Glen Ellyn/ Chicago)

Lilli also included the CD on her Folk Festival show's "Folktastic Fifteen Fave Albums" list of 2011

One of "Rich's Picks" for January, 2011

                 Rich Warren- Host of the WFMT Midnight Special radio show.

Here's a guy who's got a lot to say -- and who's not afraid to tell it like it really is. Stories from life making their journeys through the eyes, through the mind, through the heart, and out into the world again via Dean Milano's superbly crafted songs. These songs bear Dean's unmistakable stamp of truth and experience. What some songwriters do with sparseness and economy, Dean does with detail and extravagance. You SEE what Dean's getting at ... and you FEEL it, too. That's why the songs invite repeated listening; there's always a nuance, a subtlety or two that you missed the first time through. Dean crafts with words AND music -- and it's a joy to hear when it all comes together. This is one of those rare CDs that gets stronger with every song. Near the end, I was already on board and ready to travel wherever Dean might want to take me. It's a journey well spent.

                 David Simpkins- The Meadow Creek Gazette

Singer/guitarist Dean Milano’s expressive vocals reflect decades of performing folk music. An author as well as a musician, his tales of loners, truck drivers, and late-night hitchhikers on Something To Think About ring true and often have a dose of humor. “I’m Proud To Be Ignorant” is like shooting fish in a barrel, but Milano crafts sharper satire on “Musical Chairs” and the title track. Throughout the CD, there’s a sense of Milano carrying on a rich tradition.

             Terrence Flamm- The Illinois Entertainer magazine

Built On Mistakes      3:28

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Scott Braam: Guitar

Inspiration: Our house, of course.

Margie's Car                                                   3:55

Dean Milano: Vocal, guitar, and electric bass

Scott Braam: Guitars

Paul Heinz: Keyboards.

Inspiration: A lady I knew and no, I don't know what became of her

Stories From the Road: Mother and Child      4:14

Dean Milano: Vocal and guitar

Mim Eichmann: Hammered dulcimer

Jordi Kleiner: Cello

Inspiration: The drivers of Illinois Route 57


Musical Chairs                                    4:20

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Jay Whitehouse: Guitar

Scott Braam: Guitar

Paul Heinz: keyboard

Russ Ward: drums

Inspiration: My own musical oasis

Somethin' I Was Thinkin' About          4:15

Dean Milano: Vocals, percussion, guitar and electric bass 

 Scott Braam: Guitars

Russ Ward: drums

Inspiration: More of my ranting

Keepers of the Highway                      3:52

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Scott Braam: Guitar

Paul Heinz: Keyboards

 Russ Ward: Drums

Inspiration: Driving down the road

The Folksingers Dream                        1:18

Dean Milano: Vocal and guitar

Inspiration: My own recurring nightmare

My Real Grandpa                                2:23

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar, and upright bass

Scott Braam: Guitars

Jordi Kleiner: violin

Inspiration: Alfred Christanelli

I Just Might Be In Love With You            2:40

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Dave Ivaz: guitar

Russ Ward: drums

Inspiration: Yet another one that got away

The Artist                                             2:38

Dean Milano: Vocal and bass

Greg Trafidlo: Guitar and lyrics

Paul Heinz: Piano

Ken Slauf: Harmonica

Inspiration: Greg's lyrics

I'm Proud to Be Ignorant   3:38

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar and electric bass

Scott Braam: Guitar

Dave Kovnat: Drums

Inspiration: Three guesses......

Stories From The Road (Man on the Run)      4:22

Dean Milano: Vocal, guitar and electric bass

Scott Braam: Guitar

Inspiration: The drivers of Illinois Route 57

Bad News Comin’               3:48

Dean Milano: Vocal, guitar and electric bass

Dave Ivaz: guitar

Russ Ward: drums

Cathy Robel: back up vocal

Inspiration: Bret and Jemaine

Searchin' For a 10               3:12

Dean Milano: Vocal, guitar and electric bass

Jay Whitehouse: Guitar

Scott Braam: Guitar

Russ Ward: drums

Inspiration: The one that doesn’t exist.

And Then We Move On                       5:25

Dean Milano: Vocals, guitar, accordion and upright bass

Paul Heinz: Piano

Jordi Kleiner: violin

Inspiration: The truth about life.

"I think this is probably the best song you've ever written." - Rich Warren Host of the WFMT Midnight Special radio show.


All songs produced by Dean Milano

All songs copyright 2010 except I Just Might Be In Love With You- copyright 1985, (Recording engineer: Scott Braam, except The Artist, which is John Pecak).


Two new songs.....

Dewmaine            4:26


Dean Milano: Vocal and guitars

Engineer: Paul Heinz

Inspiration: A town called Dewmaine

Dewmaine- Version 2        4:12


The Last Song That I Wrote    2:58


Dean Milano: Vocal and guitar

Paul Heinz: Engineer, keyboard, bass

Inspiration: Just some thoughts I had.....


Alternate versions of two songs

I Just Might Be In Love With You


Dean Milano: Vocal and bass

Dennis Gordon: Lead and rhythm guitars, synthesizer

Ted Kendros: Drums

Cathy Schenkelberg: Vocals

Inspiration: Yet another one that got away


Searchin' For a 10


Dean Milano: Vocal and bass

Robert Maller: Lead guitar

Don Casper: Piano

Sharon Arnold: Vocal and rhythm guitar

Mike Miller: drums

Inspiration: The one that doesn’t exist





This is an actual commercial that I wrote for CableNet TV back in the early 1980s. 

It's performed by myself with the New Seekers.


The next song was recorded live by the Casualaires in 1978.

Rhythm and One For the Road


Dean Milano: Vocal and bass

Rick Shryock: Vocal and viola

Jean Gordon: Vocal and rhythm guitar

Julie Macarus: Vocal and violin

Inspiration: The disco years


Radio Airplay:

Folk Festival                                                       WDCB       Illinois              44 times    Also as guest on show 20 times

Midnight Special (Local, Nat. & Sweet Folk Chicago) WFMT-   Illinois    36 times   Rich's Pick 3/10, 6/2, 6/9/2007 and 1/15/2011

Detours                                                                 WYSO-     Ohio                30 times

Click Your Heels Together                                 KFOK      California          23 times  Cited as one of 3 top songwriters of 2008.

Fox's Minstrel Show                                          WRFG      Georgia             18 times

Wyn's Country & Gospel             Radio 88.3 & 107fm.    New Zealand     12 times

FAB-AM                                                                             England              10 times

Hillbilly Rockhouse                                             EVW      Germany            10 times

Regina's Mighty Shores                                     CJTR     Sask, Canada     9 times

The Folk Show                                                   WNUR      Illinois                7 times    Also as guest on show four times

Alooga Boom                                          Alooga Media    Germany             6 times  

Tony's World of Folk/The Celtic Connection     CFBX   BC, Canada         5 times

Town & Country Radio Show                             783 AM    New Zealand     4 times

Transitions Radio Magazine                         KABC FM  New Mexico        3 times

Country Cross Roads                                   CGC Radio   England                3 times

Eyebee's Thing              North American Broadcasting   South Carolina      3 times

Local Anesthetic Capsule                                  WXRT .....Illinois                3 times

Roadtunes Sessions                                            KCSB       California           Twice 

Rompin & Stompin Show                                   KVMR     California            Twice

Sunday Night Folk Festival                               WHUS      Connecticut        Twice

Nashville Showcase                                    Radio Sotra   Norway                 Twice

Country favorites                                           2NUR FM  Australia                Twice

Worldwide Independent Country Radio                            Australia                Twice

Folk and World Music                                       WBGU      Ohio                   Twice

Virus Americana                              MdM Radio 101.1     France                Twice

Nick Digilio Show                                                 WGN      Chicago

Hootenanny Power                                               WRKF     Louisiana 

General Eclectic                                                 WCVF      New York

Charlotte Indie Radio                                 North Carolina    CD is in regular rotation

Sunny Breeze Show                                   Radio Minsk   Belarus

Saloon                                                       BRTO Radio    The Netherlands

UIS Stereo            Universidad Industrial de Santander  Colombia

Radio Unerhört Marburg                                                  Germany

Soundwave FM                                                                  New Zealand

Radio Seagull                                                        KJLU   Missouri

Jazz Radio FM                                                                   Poland

Isles FM                                                                             Scotland

West Gippsland Community Radio                                   Australia

Radio 0162                                                                          Netherlands

RPS FM                                                                              France

Archangel's Music Corner                       ECMA Radio  Austria

Radio Terre Franche                                                         Belgium

Oz Radio                                                    Triple H-FM  Australia

Country Club Productions                                                Australia

The Country Music Club                            Radio Ham   Belgium

The Country Channel            Hot Spot Radio Network   USA

Rolf's Pladdekaddong             Radio RheinWelle 92.5   Germany

Boot Scootin' Country                        WICR/Shoutcast  Netherlands

Jazz 88                                                                WAER   New York

Afternoon Country                                            WICR    Australia

Murat Kasap Show                                  Radyo SDU   Turkey

Aimar Ventsel                                    Estonian Radio    Estonia

Country Club                                                      KIAK  Alaska

Herb Bell                                                        KRRM    Oregon

Yarra Valley                                                   FM 99.1   Australia

Darryl Lanyon                                                 101FM   Australia 

Zulu Kangaroo                                         Indie Radio   CD is in regular rotation

Acoustic Revival                                            WWSP   Wisconsin

Country Club                                           RPEM-FM   Spain

Radio Ermel                                             Veluwe FM  Netherlands

Folk Show                                               WRUW-FM   Ohio

Backroads & Blue Highways                         WVTF  Virginia

Ballads & Bamjos                                            WJFF   New York

Dick Kay Show                                                WCPT    Illinois    As guest on show

Sonic Salad Dressing                                     WKNH    New Hampshire

Gabby Parsons show                                   WMMM  Wisconsin

Andina & Rich Comedy Hour         Red Dragon TV  Wisconsin

Sunday Morning Coffeehouse                        KOPN Missouri

Night Art                                                         WUVT Virginia

Talk Radio 1240                                              KLYQ  Montana

Old Grumpy Radio                                        Live 365 Chicago


A Brief History of Popular Music by Dean Milano

Prior to the 1920s, the greatest music being written was primarily Classical in nature.

From the mid 1920s to the mid 1930s, a form of music called "jazz" stood the world on it's ear.

From the mid-1930s to the mid 1940s, big band music dominated the scene and new forms of country and western music rose in popularity.

From the mid 1940s to the mid 1950s, smaller jazz and pop combos came into their own.

From the mid 1950s to the mid 1960s, Rock and Roll was born and music would never be the same again.

From the mid 1960s to the mid 1970s, there was an explosion of psychedelic and experimental music, the likes of which had never been heard and probably never will again. Rock and Roll, Country and Western, Show Tunes, Folk songs, Jazz, and ethnic tunes could all be heard on popular Top 40 radio stations across the country.

From the mid 1970s to the mid 1980s- mostly crap.

From the mid 1980s to the mid 1990s- mostly crap.

From the mid 1990s to 2005- mostly crap.

Then in 2006, my album SONGS ABOUT STUFF was released and the progress of popular music was set back 100 years.    Hope you enjoy it.

2008- My second CD- Vestiges: More Songs About More Stuff is released. Now we're really in trouble.

2010- My third CD- Something To Think About is released. Someone stop me before it's too late!


OK- As long as I'm doing a music page, I may as well post all the obnoxious pictures of my long and winding career, so here goes........

(P.S. I was also in quite a few bands that aren't pictured here, but that's because- I don't have any pictures of them!)

july66.jpg (23870 bytes) The earliest picture I have of myself with a band. This would've been July, 1966. I'm the only guy in a dark shirt- a rebel right from the start. I was a "bass-less" lead singer on this gig. (Brad Stiles, myself, Larry Capps, the late Mac King and Billy Hudson.)

grope1.jpg (31111 bytes) My first "real" band- Grope, 1967-69. I played bass and sang backups. (Dave Turnquist, Pat Cannon, Bob Baum, Rusty Ward, Steve Zoellin and yours truly.)

Playing the Blue Village in Westmont. At this point, around 1969, I had switched from bass to keyboards. Mistake. Back to the bass!

And of course, here we are for our reunion 2011 gig. Grope has come back to haunt you!

My foray into jazz, around 1970. A whole new experience. (Ralph Muha, Connie Ball and myself.)

And then- I discovered folk music. (Myself and Pat Cannon)

pontiacjones.JPG (29813 bytes) Off to college at Southern Illinois University and my next band- Pontiac Jones, 1971-73. (Mike Potter, Pete Special, Rusty Ward and myself)

My uncle Conti Milano, lent me his stand up bass for a few years back in the 1970s, and it gave me a chance to get the feel of that instrument. The Panama City sign is in reference to a song I wrote by that name back in 1971. (Check out the song at the top section of this page)

Playing a Pontiac Jones gig at the Ponderosa Nudist Colony in 1972. Yes, one of the guys is nude and no, it's not me.

Pontiac Jones, warming up for Leo Kottke in Carbondale. I could fill several screens with the story of what happened that night. Do the words "Nightmare Gig" mean anything to you?

1974 and back home in Chicago. Dean and brother Mark decide to "get down".

nashnorth.JPG (37270 bytes) Playing bluegrass with Scuttlebucket, 1974-75. My first new band after moving back to Chicago. (Rick Shryock, Chuck Wahlstrom, myself and Jim Bertolin)

casualaires.JPG (24741 bytes) Next came the Casualaires, 1976-78. Probably my favorite of all the bands I've ever been in. (Myself, Jean Gordon, Julie Macarus, Rick Shryock)

winstracke.jpg (21730 bytes) Not a picture of my band per se, but it is my bands equipment. Left to right: Ray Tate, former Director of the Chicago Old Town School of Folk Music and Win Stracke, a founder of the school. The Casualaires were playing a book signing party for Studs Terkel that night (you can see his name on the sign behind Win) and Ray, Win and eventually Studs all got up for some improv singing. The bass guitar on the stage behind Win is mine as well as the guitar case with the old Pontiac symbol on it (for Pontiac Jones, my old rock band) and Win is actually singing into my microphone. Ah, fame is so fleeting..... 

A legend in my own mind.

In 1979, a few partners and I formed Airflow Deluxe, a big band. The venture was not particularly successful, but it was certainly a learning experience.

One of the highlights of my time with Airflow Deluxe was performing at Chicago Fest on several occasions.

  Onstage with Airflow Deluxe the night we opened the show for Cab Calloway. 

In 1980, I joined The New Seekers and toured on and off with them for 4 years. The photo is of our performance at Milwaukee Summerfest.

I have to say, The New Seekers private jets and limo lifestyle was quite different from anything I'd experienced prior. Hard not to get spoiled!

Playing jugband music at my surprise 30th birthday party. (Greg Trafidlo, myself, Rick Shryock)

singingbananas.JPG (30311 bytes) The Singing Bananas- 1980-81. A short lived, but really fun band. (Myself, Mick Scott and Jeff Jones)

losttourists.JPG (28213 bytes) The Lost Tourists- 1982-83. Another short lived, but fun band that was also the beginning of a long musical partnership with Dennis Gordon. (Clockwise from top: Jan Lewis, myself, Dennis and Ted Kendros, photo- Pat Cannon)

gordonmilano.JPG (33150 bytes) Dennis Gordon and Dean Milano- a couple of mild guys who think of themselves as Wild Guys. We  worked together from 1982 til Dennis passed away in 2007 and during that time we made a lot of great music... that probably not too many people were actually interested in.

Rubbaband! A fun country band I was in sometime around 1983-4. We got a gig at the Deluxe Budget Motel and we were told we might be expected to haul cases of beer up from the basement once in a while. The gig didn't last too long. (Dennis Gordon, Julie Macarus, John Benishek, Jim Bromm and yours truly)

longbranch1.JPG (32778 bytes) During the summer of 1984, I headed down to Osage Beach in the Ozarks of Missouri to do a six month long show at Marriotts Tan-Tar-A resort. Gettin' paid to have fun! (Note: There's a reason why this pic looks particularly good. The fellow who took it went on to win a Pulitzer Prize in photography)

milanojam.JPG (30493 bytes) The Milano boys "rockin' out" on the driveway of their folks house in Glen Ellyn, Illinois- Summer of '85. It was fun til the cops came. Actually, we were bummed because no one came to watch, including the cops! (Phillip, Steven, Mark and myself. Where was Paul hiding?)

drygulch.jpg (35355 bytes) drygulch3.JPG (44295 bytes) In the Fall of 1985, I got a call to sub for the bass player at a country western dinner theatre called the Dry Gulch. He quit, and I ended up staying for 7 years, eventually becoming the music director.

dgaccordian.JPG (31378 bytes) And I even talked them into putting my accordion into the show. Love that Cajun music!

gulchgirls.JPG (26875 bytes) Ah, yes- my dream come true. Surrounded by the showgirls of the Dry Gulch. And what could be better than an imaginary cigarette after imaginary sex?

xmasjam.jpg (38038 bytes) A Milano Christmas invariably ended up in an absolutely insane jam session as can be seen here. I don't want to sound like I'm bragging or anything, but man- we rocked! I mean, we brought the house down! (Myself, Paul, my Aunt Toni and Mark)

tumbleweed.JPG (29262 bytes) Tumbleweed Junction 1991-92. Obviously....a country band. (Lida Bringe, Dennis Cahill, Karen Dale, Rich Kreegier and myself)

littlecountry.JPG (17750 bytes) Little Country Band 1993-95. This band was a smaller version of the Born to Boogie Band, which I then ended up joining the following year. (Mike Arturi, Bill Gordon, the late Danny Patton and myself)

borntoboogie.JPG (36242 bytes) The Born To Boogie Band 1994-95. This was a band fronted by Big John Howell, a local DJ on a Chicago country music radio station (US 99). (John Howell, myself, Mike Arturi on drums)

joyafest.jpg (43662 bytes) 1995- The five brothers singing at a festival in the town of Gioia Del Colle, home of our ancestors in Italy. Our cousin John was in charge of the music stage and asked us if we'd like to perform. I don't want to imply we bombed, but John did say his reputation was "destroyed".

nighthawk.JPG (35668 bytes) Nighthawk 1996-97. A short lived country band I was in that had some of the tightest 3 part harmony of any band I've been in. (Bob Maller, Don Casper, Sharon Arnold, Mike Miller and myself)

mariachi.jpg (31084 bytes) Sitting in with a local Mariachi band somewhere in Mexico, 1997

blackalley.JPG (25037 bytes) Black Alley Blues Band 1997-98. The band wasn't so hot but the scenery was nice. Can't remember the woman singers name (Laurie something?) or the other two guys, but that's Bob Maller in the center of the picture to the right of me.

userfriendly.JPG (25640 bytes) User Friendly 1998- present. This band performs with a variety of different players, depending on who's available that day. (Dennis Gordon, Rick Mann, Jeff Dumas, Todd Jackson, Dave Ivaz and myself)

gulchreunion.JPG (26971 bytes) A Dry Gulch reunion, 1999. (Todd Jackson, Peter Seman and myself.)

brotherswedding.JPG (24883 bytes) An historic event, to be sure! The Five Singing Milano brothers onstage together at my wedding- 2000. We certainly weren't going to let some silly festival in Italy stop us. If at first you don't succeed....... (Paul, Phillip, myself, Steve and Mark)

sohojam.jpg (26140 bytes) Sitting in with the band in Soho, London, 2000. They sure love that American rock and roll over there.

ducksoup.jpg (48704 bytes) Duck Soup- a band I worked with on and off from about 1996 til they broke up in 2002. One member, Ken Slauf was actually in Grope, my high school band. (Rich Hughes, Lee Shibovitch, myself and Ken)

cubajam.jpg (33183 bytes) Sitting in with a local band in Cuba -2000. We didn't really speak each others languages too well, but when music is involved, it hardly matters.

cretejam.jpg (37891 bytes) Sharing a tune with a fellow in Crete, Greece -2001. Actually, I think he was more interested in having his picture taken than he was in singing.

legit.jpg (27343 bytes) Actually, this scene isn't quite as legitimate as it looks. I believe we were playing LOUIE, LOUIE when the photo was taken. (Peter Seman's hand, Charlotte Volkman-Jackson and myself)

userf.jpg (33783 bytes) Another version of User Friendly, this time playing the Beer Garden at Chicago's Navy Pier- 2002. (Dave Ivaz, Dennis Gordon, Brad Lake and myself)

tonysmith.JPG (25226 bytes) Jobbing with Tony Smith and His Almost Famous Band- I've been doing dates with Tony's band on and off since 2000.

flamenco.jpg (26477 bytes) Teaching Abby, my 6 year old granddaughter, the art of Flamenco. "Abby, I said 1-2-3-4, 1-2-3-4!!!!! Now do it again and do it right!"

puertav.jpg (29463 bytes) Jamming with the band in Puerto Vallarta- 2005. I'll do anything for a free meal.

nicaruaga.JPG (29648 bytes) Jamming with the band in Nicaragua- 2005. I'll do anything to get my kidnapped wife back.

bluesbass2.JPG (19905 bytes) I hadn't played the stand up bass since the late 1970s, but I suddenly got an urge to play one again, so I went out and bought me one. Totally cool, daddy-o!

head_shot1small.jpg (25792 bytes) After 40 years in show business, I finally broke down and had a head shot taken. How embarrassing.  (Photo-Mike Kelly) 

Mick__Deancrop.jpg (125311 bytes) Singer/songwriter Mick Scott and I performing at the Heartland Cafe in Chicago, 2007 (Photo Tery Veras)

The Grass Stains, a great little band I worked with for a couple of years. (Jordi Kleiner, Donald Terao, myself, Carol Francis, Irene and Mike Kelly)

Chatting with Martin Hayes, the Irish fiddle player at the Willie Clancy Music Fest in Doolin, County Clare, 2007

Jay Whitehouse and I kickin' out the Jams at Bill's Blues, a club in Evanston, Illinois.

In the stu-stu-studio, just a sing-sing-singing. Workin' on the new CD- Vestiges: More Songs About More Stuff

It was quite an honor to meet Hazel Dickens (right) and Alice Gerrard (left), the First Ladies of Bluegrass Music at Folk Alliance 2008. Greg Trafidlo and I were lucky enough to be part of a private jam session with Hazel, Alice and John Lilly, in which we swapped songs for over 2 hours in a hotel conference room.

The Silverbeams, a great little country band I started gigging with in 2007- complete with it's own dance instructors! Left to right: Rick Veras, Maryann Renquillo, yours truly, Barb Silverman and Pat Stamer.

Nice little reunion at the Masthouse in Woodstock, Il. From left to right: Russ Ward, Greg Trafidlo, Ken Slauf and myself. And yes, there were more than two people in the audience that night.

Dave Humphreys introducing me onstage at the Downers Grove Heritage Fest, June 28th 2008. Irene Kelly is standing next to me and just out of the picture are Carol Francis and Jay Whitehouse. Later in the afternoon, I was part of an impromptu jam with Michael Miles, Chris Walz and Keith Bauman. We definitely rocked.....

On October 19th, 2008 we held a memorial jam session for my Uncle Connie Milano, who had passed away in July. I was honored to be able to play my uncle's bass, which he had passed on to me in his will. Accompanying me are Eddie Piccard on piano and Rusty Jones on drums.

Toots! (and a dude). This is a fun trio I've been working with lately, specializing in 1920's through 1940s tunes. The ladies are Pam Brunkalla and Katie Bendorf.

On June 2, 2009, I was asked to be part of a symposium on the Lincoln Park music scene of the past 40 years. The event was hosted by DePaul University, moderated by Rick Kogan. Other panel members were Ed Holstein, Lino Darchum, Steve Hashimoto and Earl Pionke. It was a very interesting evening, to say the least.

November 22nd 2009. The party for the release of my book- The Chicago Music Scene: 1960s and 1970s. Over 75 musicians from the book were at the event meeting fans, playing music and signing autographs. Just at a glance, in this group shot I see Victor Sanders, Tom Webb, Russ Ward, Steve Justman, Mike Gasman, Jim Pilster, Paul Petraitis, Jeff Quinn, Greg Tarfidlo, Muriel Anderson, Tony Smith, Ronnie Rice, Ken Slauf, Amy Lowe, Chris Farrell, Alejo Poveda, myself, Annie Schwartz, Tommy Furlong, Jeannie Lambert, Jimy Sohns, Jimy Rogers, Ruth Tobias, Steve Hashimoto, Greg Cahill, Marc Edelstein, Annie Hat, Elliott Delman and many more..... (Photo courtesy of Moe the Photographer)

A few months after my book came out, I received two tickets from John Prine for his upcoming show in Joliet. He wanted to swap the tickets for a signed copy of my book. I think I got the better deal!

Another band I'd been working with recently- The Blackbyrds. This group was put together by Peter Nye in order to showcase some of our favorite Roots/Americana and original tunes. And yes, our cellist does have eyes, just not in this picture apparently.

Singing away at the 2010 WDCB Radio Holiday Hoot party. That's me on the left with the deer in the headlights look, joined by Kate Early, Bob Holdsworth and Sue Fink.

  On Jan.21, 2011 I held a CD Release Party at Two Way Street Coffeehouse for my 3rd album (yes, I still call them albums- cuz they are!) called Something to think about. Performing were Jordi Kleiner on violin, Paul Heniz on piano, Mim Eichmann on hammered dulcimer and vocals, Russ Ward on percussion, guitar and vocals, Ken Slauf on harmonica, guitar and vocals and Jay Whitehouse on guitar and vocals, Cathy Robel on vocals as well as Diane Ward and Scott Braam on guitar. (Thanks Norm Siegel for the photo)

Performing at one of my gigs with Bob Abrams, aka Bobby Hollywood and the Hills.

A group shot of the musicians who took part in Eric Kinkel's concert at the Schaumburg Center for the Performing Arts. L to R: Bob Abrams, Traci Cass, Jon Abel, Eric Kinkel, Salina Norman, Patti Prendergast and myself.

The Grope reunion 2011. First time we performed together in 42 years- and we sounded great! L-R: Myself, Pat Cannon, Bob Baum, Russ Ward and Ken Slauf.

The Earl (of Old Town) Pionke birthday party, June 2012. I'm standing between John Prine and Bonnie Koloc in the first photo.

More to come, as long as I get more work!



Below are the lyrics to the songs on my CD- Something To Think About. These are printed for use by radio disc jockeys.

1. Built On Mistakes

 Last night as my wife made dinner for two

 she looked ‘round our kitchen so small

Y’know if this room were bigger there’s so much I could do

 Just a few more feet, that’s all


Touching the old wooden table, I said with a smile

Here’s something to think about

if this kitchen were bigger by a foot or a mile

 this marriage is something I doubt


She cried- What are you saying? We’d be husband and wife

Makes no difference what room we’re in.

 Well, that may be true, but it’s a funny ol’ life

And I think this is worth tellin’


Now you’ve lived in this house 25 years or more

  long before we were a pair

And I remember the story you told me before

 ‘bout the mistakes that were made here and there


You said it’s s’posed to be bigger by 3 feet or more

 But the workman got lazy that day

He measured it wrong and when the concrete was poured

I guess they figured it looked ok


So now we pay the price with a kitchen too small

, but think about what might have been

That mistake may have seemed like nothing at all

 But it changed our future back then


Built on Mistakes Built on Mistakes

Take a look at your world, it just might be Built on Mistakes


If they’d made this house just the way that they should We might not be here today

You might not be living in this neighborhood And I wouldn’t know you this way


Cuz what if somebody else fell in love with this place

 Just before you walked through that door  

But no, they wanted a house with a little more space

 A kitchen -  with 3 feet or more


Then we both got quiet as she looked around

 And the place didn’t seem so small

As the room filled with moonlight and we sat down

She said you may be right after all


And it made me think of the people affected By a silly mistake long before we were born

And the 3 or 4 feet that the workman neglected on that 19 and 39 morn


Built on Mistakes Built on Mistakes

Sometimes I feel like this whole world was built on Mistakes

Sometimes I feel like this whole world was built on Mistakes And ain’t that just great


2. Margie’s car


I wish I was a teenager again well, not really

the things I did, the things I said what was goin through my head?


Well we had a little gang and we thought we were pretty cool

Just cruisin around with the windows down throwin beer cans at the high school

We were all too young to drive but there was this girl we knew Margie had an old Fairlane

She was 21 and she could drive it, too


Well, hey there, Margie Can you pick us up at 8

 I guess it doesn’t matter if you’re a couple minutes late

And since you’re 21 it would really make our day

if you’d stop and grab a six pack on the way

Yeah, good ol Margie


Now Margie wasn’t real pretty and she didn’t have much to say

But come to think of it nobody talked to her anyway

She’d park on the street and Honk the horn I’d run down the steps Like it was Christmas morn

 open the door, jump in the back and join the party with the rest of the pack

And I can’t remember if I even said Hi to good old Margie


Sometimes we’d bring our girlfriends and cram in the back seat

Margie would park by the railroad tracks while the rest of us turned up the heat

One night I looked out the window  from my rhapsody in the car

and I could see Margie down by the tracks just staring up at the stars


And it’s Hey there Margie What ya doin tonight

Does anyone ever ask you If you’re feelin alright?

Does anybody know you The things that make you cry

Did any of us touch your hand Or even say goodbye?

To good ol Margie


Ran into my friend Jeff at the VFW I asked about the old gang  and I mentioned Margie, too

He said the last he heard she’d hit the bottle pretty hard Once the gang split up and everyone got their own car

But he wasn’t sure if it was her they were talking about It might have been Fran or Bonnie there seemed to be some doubt

I’d like to think it wasn’t her and maybe she’s doin’ fine I’d like to think so anyhow and it would surely ease my mind


3. Stories From the Road (Mother and child)


                Like ships passing in the night

Faces reflecting the dashboard light

We found the ties that bind

And in those moments

Our lives were forever entwined


That Christmas Eve, I remember it still trying to get home on a ten dollar bill

Standing out on the interstate ramp cursing the cold and damp


A thousand headlights come and go piercing the dark and the midnight snow

The flashing sign from a cheap motel says you won’t get a ride on this night from hell

With one last look at my ten dollar bill I turned and walked up the hill


While dreaming of tropical beaches all night I awoke to the cold of the morning light

Back on the ramp I stuck out my thumb and soon I was feeling quite numb


Then just my luck along comes a ride, a pretty young girl pulling off to the side

She motioned to me and turned quickly away and I could see she was having a bad day


Hey, why so glum?, I jokingly scolded and she tried to smile as her story unfolded

Of a husband who told her he’d found a new life in the arms of his best friends wife


Then she reached for my hand and never let go we drove in silence for an hour or so

“This is where I get out, just up ahead  would you like to come in?” I said


There were tears in her eyes as she turned about and all in a rush the words pouring out 

As she suddenly realized what might have been, she said I must go home, I can’t be your friend


My precious babies are waiting back there my only hope in this whole nightmare

I’ll face my demons tonight if it be, but my children will always need me




4. Musical Chairs


I met a cute little gal at the bank where I worked last summer

we used to sit around talkin’ bout how this job was such a bummer

she didn’t seem to mind that I was old enough to be her dad

so one night we had dinner and ended up at my pad


Things were goin real nice- just gettin cozy on the couch

So I put on some Zappa -And she’ll yelled ouch!

I said hey whats the matter?- Was I getting fresh?

She said what‘is that music? I saidThat’s weasels ripped my flesh


She threw my record on the floor and took a cd out of her purse)

And I was starting to think this is goin from bad to worse

Well we listened to the singer, some woman named Brittney

And like a bad dream come true, it suddenly hit me


We’re playing musical chairs And I ain’t sittin down

There’s only one chair left And it’s lookin’ like I just lost this round


Well I figured it was time to find a gal my own age

So I met nice lady who seemed to be on the same page

Just when I was a-thinking- I could probably like her

She puts on an album by Ferrante & Teicher


When I said Dylan, she said Denver

I played John Coltrane, she played John Tesh

When I said Willie, she said Boxcar?

She said Mozart’s ok, but she thinks Salieri’s the best

When she said Berry I said Chuck, and she said - Manilow!

She was a Bee Gees fan cuz their disco songs were such fun

I played Piece of My Heart and she said that’s a Faith Hill song

I played Tutti Frutti and she said I thought Pat Boone sang that one?




By this time I was tearing out what little hair was left on my head

I threw her out of my life and stumbled on up to my bed

Next day I got up  and had a little time to think it over

And I cried my new roommates name is gonna be Rover


So take those old records off the shelf

I guess Bob Seeger was right

I got me a dog and he sits by my chair

And howls to my songs all night.


no more musical chairs, cuz now I’m sittin down

There’s only one chair left now and it’s surrounded by a beautiful sound

It’s just musical chairs and now I’m sittin down

There’s only one chair left and it’s just me and my musical hound.


5. Somethin’ I Was Thinkin’ About


I’d like to talk about a coupla things I can’t seem to figure out

This song ain’t no big deal It’s just somethin’ I was thinkin’ about


Thinkin’ ‘bout gasoline


I had to take a second mortgage on my house just to get some bucks

So I could buy 10 gallons of gas to fill up my old truck

Now if they found a sea of oil just below the county dump

Do you think they might see fit to drop the prices at the pump?


I Don’t know-no-no  but I don’t think so-so

So I may not be too bright  But this picture don’t look right

Are things what they appear  Or am I missing something here?

Well I don’t know-no-no But I don’t think so


Thinkin’ ‘bout guns


Did you ever stop to wonder about all  these folks with their guns?

They claim they must protect their families from the hordes of roving huns

But what if all them huns got tossed in a big ol jail one day?

Would our god fearin citizens gladly put their guns away?




Thinkin bout religion


Now everyone thinks they got the one true answer and everybody else is doomed

They point their fingers, make up the rules and pass the collection plates around the room

But if the Almighty himself came down and finally set things straight

Would all those churches follow the truth and give up their nice tax breaks?




Right now you’re probably wondering what’s the point of this ol song

You might just think it’s a waste of time but then I could be wrong

Don’t spend your whole day frettin’ away in case you’ve got your doubts

It might be nothin’ but maybe it’s somethin’….

somethin’ you’ll be thinking about.


6. Keepers of the Highway


Let’s write a verse for the traveling salesman

We’ll play a few chords for the truck drivin man

Livin their lives between the blacktop and white lines

sing a song if you can For the keepers of the highway


Flashing red lights in my rear view mirror Sure ain’t what I wanna see

But just up ahead there’s a car in the ditch I guess I’m glad someone’s there for you and me

For the man with a badge It’s an awful heavy load

But it’s just one more day Of life on the road….So




Last week I got stuck in a 2 mile back up And I was cursing that guy in the orange hard hat

But when his work is all done and the road’s runnin’ smooth Does anyone ever stop to thank him for that?

Standin’ out there with his life on the line Listenin’ to our rubber tires whine




Well the next time I stop at a local motel or check out the diner in the town up ahead

I’ll be thinking ‘bout the people depending on us And the different lives we’ve all led

The girl in the toll booth The gas station guy

Don’t let em fade away As you go rolling on by




From the Canadian boundaries to the Mexican border

Sing  a song if you can

 for the keepers of the highway


7. Folk Singers Dream


Last night I had the strangest dream I ever had before

I dreamed I played my folksongs at the coffeehouse next door.


The audience it number five I knew them everyone

Quietly tuning their instruments waiting til I was done


Then to our amazement by the door did stand

a young man who was neatly dressed with no guitar in hand


We welcomed him to our music fest We all made such a fuss

It’s seldom that we play for one who’s not a folkie like us


It’s true kind sir, he said to me I am no troubadour

I just came in to change for the meters and then he was out the door.


8. My Real Grandpa


I hardly knew my real grandpa He died when I was seven

Seemed to be a pretty nice guy I hope he made it to heaven


But grandma she’d remarried  with a new man in her life

and for 37 years, she was proud to be his wife

And though we all knew different,


He was that special kinda guy  who was everybody’s friend

and he had the kind of laugh That always made ya feel good again

And if he heard this song right now He’d probably laugh I know

But as the ye---ars go by I find I miss that laughter so


Well I had grandmas and grandpas And I’ve got cousins by the score

Uncles and aunts, I really  couldn’t ask for more

Ya know I loved them every one but the one I loved the best

Was the guy who came too late and stood above the rest


and in the end it didn’t matter  if his veins shared my blood

cuz I guess I decided I’d rather share his love

He was my real grandpa that’s all I have to say

My real grandpa And I liked it just that way


Well I married in my September years With no child to take my name

I missed out on those sleepless nights And that awful teenage game

But with my lovin’ wife There appeared a whole new brood

Including children and grandkids One for every mood


I love em more than words can tell And if my dream comes true

I hope one day they’ll say I was their real grandpa, too.


9. I Just Might Be In Love With You


Maybe I just didn’t make it clear to you I should have seen by the look in your eyes,

I wasn’t gettin’ through Maybe the words I used would’ve worked in a different way

But I could have sworn that you turned your back Every time I had something to say


So here we stand at the fork in the road thinkin’ of the love and the seeds that we sowed

                 Am I wastin’ my time  Can’t you see that I’m losin’ my mind?

                 But you’re so much a part of me  And there’s so many things that I want you to see

                 If it makes any difference won’t ya give me a clue, cuz I just might be in love with you


Maybe this feelin’ I’m havin’ wasn’t meant to be But I just got to know if there was even a chance before I set it free

Maybe I’m tellin’ myself you’re not right for me Cause I had nothin’ before and now I’ve got nothin’ but misery




10.The Artist


Sitting’ in a tavern on Kedzie Avenue Grabbed a window seat to beat the heat  and down a brew or two

This guy comes through the doorway quite a sight to behold Heavy set, wet with sweat his face was flecked with gold


He took the stool beside me kept staring ‘cross the street

Let out a curse (Hey, I’ve heard worse) then he began to speak


That second “D” in D.D.S The outline should be thicker

This poor chump was in the dumps He ordered up more liquor


Ya See, he was a man of letters Like some artist of renown

Writing names on window panes On offices ‘round town


Eighteen carat characters Precisely lined in black

Like stuff you’d cop from a jewelry shop This guy just had the knack


Barkeep poured another  Then he looked outside to see

Said “What the hey, call it a day, Your sign looks fine to me


The guy says “Think about it”My work’s a thing of art

To you its’ fine, just a sign To me, my calling card


He listed little to the left Then pulled himself together

Gathered up his paint and brush To fix that vexing letter.


Up his wooden ladder This second story man

Put on a show for folks below With a big unsteady hand


He teetered and he tottered And down the painter went

With a thud, like a sack of spuds In a heap on the cement


The sidewalk’s red and black and gold Where this low-rent Rembrandt lay

The coppers said, “Dis guy’s stone dead Just some drunk D.O.A.”


Now I ain’t no philosopher So don’t ask my advice

But, It don’t seem smart to die for art cuz perfection’s got it’s price


11. Proud to be ignorant


I coulda gone to college, but college is for creeps

And it didn’t cost me a cent to learn what I learned here on the streets

Things like how to get drunk and start up a fight

With a different stranger every night

And grabbin the waitress sweet behind

If I think she looks fine, fine , fine……...


And if you don’t like me, that’s too damn bad

I sure ain’t the type you wanna get mad

There’s more n more of us every year

Better get used to havin us here.


Now right between my ears, there’s wide open spaces

And just like that song, I got friends in low places

I’m loud and I’m big I got the manners of a pig

And I’m proud to be ig-norant.


Well, I walked into a bar where the folksingers play

Don’t need to hear no folksinger, there’s a hockey game on today

So I turned up their TV when the barmaid turned her back

And I stomped and I screamed like a wild animal pack

Folks in the room kept yellin at me to shut up and be quiet

So I stood on the stool and pulled down my pants

Now ain’t that just a riot?


Went off on a camping trip with a couple of good ol boys

Sittin by the campfire late at night, just makin a bunch a noise

We drank and partied til 2 in the morning

 ranger came by with a final warning

said folks around here are tryin ta sleep

But we just laughed and made fun of his Jeep


Next morning we stumbled out into the sun

The beer cans numbered a hundred and one

Scattered around far as we could see

So we stomped em flat and threw em into the trees


Well we packed up the truck and we started to leave

But what happened next we just couldn’t believe

A big plastic bag we’d left behind


Flew onto the windshield ….. we were drivin blind

well bubba’s at the wheel and he couldn’t see

He drove straight into a bunch of trees

He lost control and went into the river

The thought of that river still makes me shiver


Well I’m no fan of those tree huggin nuts

But there is one thing and I’ll tell you what

we learned our lesson and it’s understood

Use paper bags, plastic’s no good




12. Stories From the Road (Man on the Run)


Like ships passing in the night

Faces reflecting the dashboard light

We found the ties that bind

And in those moments

Our lives were forever entwined


That Christmas Eve, I remember it still trying to get home on a ten dollar bill

Standing out on the interstate ramp cursing the cold and damp


A thousand headlights come and go piercing the dark and the midnight snow

The flashing sign from a cheap motel says you won’t get a ride on this night from hell

With one last look at my ten dollar bill I turned and walked up the hill


While dreaming of tropical beaches all night I awoke to the cold of the morning light

Back on the ramp I stuck out my thumb and soon I was feeling quite numb


Then just my luck along comes a ride, a brand new Corvette pulling off to the side

The windows with stickers as plain as can be Stating “This is Corvette for ’73!”


As he pulled to a stop and I opened the door, the driver looked tired as the clothes that he wore

A bit rough and tumble all ready to fight and something just didn’t seem right


As the needle hit 90 he glanced in the mirrors and soon he confirmed all the worst of my fears

He warned me of what was to come, If we see any cops, we’ll just have to run


Ya see, I just stole this beauty of mine and I won’t let them catch me this time

although I still had many miles to go, I suddenly spoke of my old uncle Joe


He just happens to live in the very next town, so I smiled and said “see you around”.

Back on the highway the sirens I heard , did the cat finally catch our little bird?




13. Bad News Comin’.


Woke up this mornin’, Now don’t ya just love them songs

Where the first line the guy sings is woke up this morning

And ya know it don’t matter if he’s happy or sad

Cuz in the end everything is gonna turn out bad

B-B-B-Bad news comin


 Now the postman’s comin’ got a letter for you

Whenever there’s a postman I’ll give you a clue

He’s either got you a note from your Uncle Sam

Or a dear John letter from your woman

And since there ain’t no draft right now

you can bet it ain’t from uncle Sam anyhow

Bad news comin


                Bad news comin’ (Bad news comin’)

No sense runnin   (No sense runnin)

pull down the shades – Lock the door

scream until ya can’t scream no more

there’s bad news comin’. (bad news comin’.)

Yeah, bad news comin’. (bad news comin’.)


 Drivin down the road just about midnight

In the rearview mirror now you’re watchin’ the headlights

There’s a couple a guys a been following you

In a black sedan and they’re both wearin’ suits

Now why do the bad guys always wear suits

even though sometimes they wear cowboy boots?

Bad news comin  (Bad News Comin’)

Bad news comin  (Bad News Comin’)


 Don’t look now, be quiet as a mouse (bad news, bad news comin’)

Ya just found out there’s a killer in the house (bad news, bad news comin’)

Hidin’ in the bathroom, you’re in a bad dream

There’s a hand on your shoulder and it makes ya scream.

But it’s just your friend Bill sneaking in through the door

Now how come Bill never put his hand on your shoulder before?

B-B-B-Bad news comin




So what is the bad news?

When you gonna tell us?

We’re still waitin.  Singin and waitin

Hey, we’d like to know Can ya tell us some more?


14. Searchin; For a Ten


“Doesn’t the band sound great tonight?” I said to the cowboy on the barstool sittin’ right next to me

I guess he agreed and then he turned away and went back to starin’ at the silent picture on the color TV


That raven haired beauty I’d been checkin’ out, well she just slipped out the door

How many more nights will I sit at this bar til I just can’t stand it no more?


And maybe it’s time, time I gave in, and what a long, lonely time it’s been

I’m wastin away, searchin’ for a 10. gotta come down to earth again.


Back in the corner off the dance hall floor she sits by herself, just a face in the crowd through the smoke and the noise

Two steppin couples keep dancin’ on by, she sips on her Coke as she watches the girls sittin down with the boys


Well, she’s not the kind of girl I been dreamin about, but those dream girls, they fade away

And now I’m standin next to her and she’s lookin up at me and we’re both stumblin for somethin to say




And I’ll love you if I can


Doesn’t the band sound great tonight and wouldn’t ya like to dance with me?


15. And Then We Move On


So whatever happened to Vaudeville? No one remembers and no one cares

But when the curtain came down for the very last time, it was the end of the world for the Flying  O’Hares


Then come the magic of the New York stages, a feast for the eyes on the great white way

We had Sondheim and Bernstein, Fosse and Prince, but the lights finally dimmed on their wonderful plays

 It’s happened so many times before when it does, we just open a new door


And then we move on. This old world keeps on turning

But everytime another child is born  that flame keeps on burning

And then we move on. We all have our golden age

We hope it never ends But when it’s done we turn the page

And then we move on


Then like the cry from a newborn babe It was the dawn of the rock and roll days

Like a bird it flew til it’s song was sold, trapped in a golden cage

Now my story took place on a Chicago avenue where the folkies could sing out their hearts

The street was filled with voice and guitar, but the times were a changing and then it all fell apart


Well, I heard the kids talking at the Starbucks today, I could see they were all feeling down

They said the DJ’s don’t play anything good anymore and the clubs have all closed downtown 

I smiled as I listened and suddenly I thought how fragile life is in a way

So just remember the times when the world was all yours, and how good it felt yesterday                         



Special thanks to: Jordi Kleiner, Jay Whitehouse, Dave Ivaz, Russ Ward, Cathy Robel, Paul Heinz, Mat Irvine, Jeff Justman and of course Greg Trafidlo.