I grew up in Jacksonville, FL. and I’ve always loved to sing. My first memories are of my mother singing and I sing for her. In the streets and corners on the East Side of town I found great satisfaction and joy in music and would sing with anyone. I later sang in the school chorus, and a small church choir, I did both mainly because of the girls (smile).
I left home to join Lewis “Jiggs” Walker’s band in Tallahassee, Fl. they played all styles of music and that has helped me all my life. While in the band I learned to train my voice as one would train on any instrument. I went on to sing in other bands and met and befriended Michael “Slick” Rychlik and who loved to sing even more than me. He taught me the importance of writing and performing one’s own material, of family and friendship.
During those years I was privileged to sing with and befriend Tallahassee’s “First Lady of Song,” Pam Laws. Around this same time I hung out and lived with Will “Dr Doom” Barrow, who to this day will show up in Bonaire ready to for some musical fun in the sun.
Close to the end of my T-town years I hooked up with two God gifted singers Cynthia Calhoun and Glenn Bostic. We would hang out at Paul Newman’s apt and sit around for hours singing acapella, it was at this time I realized I couldn’t sing, but they never seemed to mind. We would all go to the prisons (men’s and women’s) and sing for the inmates, and it was always a good time for us, probably because we could leave.
I came to the beautiful island of Bonaire in 1990 to play 2 weeks at Captain Don’s Habitat forming the Kunuku Band with “Sparky” Thorne. Around this time I would meet and befriend the bassist Harvey Brooks and “The New York Party Posse”. The singers Jeff Young and Catherine Russell, the players in the band Aaron Heick, Tom Barney, Will Barrow, Gary Gold, and Leo Traversa all raised the roof, and gave Bonaire a lot of sweet memories.
Through the years I have become a part of Bonaire, it’s nightlife, it’s music, with the help and guidance of two talented and gifted friends Robbie Swinkels and Gaby Mercera, I now have a CD. I thank you all.
When you come to Bonaire you
can find me at these places:
Copyright © 2000-2005
Ralph Stewart - All Rights Reserved.