Wow where do I
Think about it a
second and that's easy...
My wife Kim that's
where! For going along with this crazy idea to host
Heepvention and being by my side thru all the planning
and being there to help me out whenever and wherever
possible. There's absolutely no way I could've pulled
this off without her blessing and support. And of course
the best part was her playing Rain while I sang. That
was all her idea as she knows what that song means to
me. She practiced her fingers off as she's not a
performer on the keys, and she did a great job! Words
aren't enough to thank you for all you did and continue
to do in our lives.
Next has to be my
partners in crime Rob, Ron, Mac, and Dave W. As with my
wife, there's no way this could've happened without
these 4. You were the main core of planning for the
music and website and anything else that came along.
Thanx so much guys for all the e-mails and phone calls
thru all this! You're the best.
To the musicians -
Brad, Avery, Keith, Mac, Rob, John, Andre, and Dave W.
Thanx for all the hard work and blistered fingers you
sacrificed while practicing. You guys soldiered on
preparing your parts while doing the rest of your life
stuff. Hope it was as meaningful for you as it was for
me to get up there and play songs you love. Very special
kudos to Avery once again - dude you're a true friend
and I know all the musicians and attendees thank you for
once again being a pro and doing your very best on songs
you learned in a very short time. I'm glad you're my
To the attendees - I
know what it's like to carve time out of your busy
schedule and spend money you could probably find a
better use for and travel to Heepventions just to spend
time with your friends and catch some Heep music. Thank
you so much for doing that. I hope you all can echo the
words of a first timer on Sat nite by saying "it
was worth the trip!"
To Ed and Charlie -
for being the videographer and paparazzi. Great job from
what I've seen so far. Thanx so much for giving your
talents and your money to record the event.
And last but certainly
not least Donna and Kevin at The Prince - What else can
I say about you? You didn't know me from Adam when I
first asked you about holding Heepvention at your club.
Thought then it would be a great place to have it and
you proved me right. I know you got more than you
bargained for on Sunday with the music and everything. I
so appreciate your willingness to help out and hang in
there with us thru all this. Thanx for helping with the
promotion and banners an everything else you did behind
the scenes. You guys went way outta your way to help
make this a success!!
I've had a dream for
several years to host Heepvention and that dream is now
complete. Part of me is glad so life can get back to
semi-normal but a larger part is sad because it came and
went so very fast. It was worth every free moment spared
in the planning and execution of the event.
Till next time...
My Heepvention Journal
- Part I (Friday)
I just arrived home
about an hour ago from Heepvention 2005 in Knoxville –
my 3rd to date. This is part 1 of my
With every years that
passes, I hear many wondering aloud if there will be any
further Heepventions in the future. Based
on this year’s
gathering, I would imagine so! Most fan conventions are
very impersonal commercial endeavors that simply
cash in on the bands they promote. ‘Heepventions’
have become a gathering of friends that only seem to
little closer with each year. It is a heartfelt
tribute to the band we love, regardless of the band’s
current popularity or the
obstacles we overcame to make
the event happen.
I can’t begin to
talk about this year’s Heepvention without first
thanking Dave & Kim Griffin for all they did to make
possible. I can’t even imagine the hours they’ve
put into planning and organizing all aspects of this
convention. Dave & I
have been working together on
putting together this year’s jam band, learning songs
and making set list decisions for the
past 6 months. In
the process, I’ve also gained a great friend and
It has been a
privilege for me to work with such a talented vocalist.
Although I felt some initial chemistry when we first
played together in Trenton, last year’s Heepvention in
Concord really showed me what a fine team we could be.
easy to find musicians that can agree on
creative decisions, but seem to have that all important
dynamic of mutual respect
and being willing to
compromise without any pettiness. Playing with Dave
feels perfectly natural and refreshingly stress
both seem to have the same sense of discipline about
learning the songs and performing to the best of our
abilities. To find all of these qualities in one
musician is NOT an easy task, so I’m blessed to have
The weekend began for
me on Friday afternoon. I worked a half day at my job
and was able to begin the 3 hour drive
from Knoxville to
Atlanta at 12:30 PM. I arrived at Dave and Kim’s
around 3:30 PM.
Charlie Gibb came in
from Philadelphia just shortly afterwards and he came
over to Dave’s house just shortly thereafter. I
the pleasure of meeting Charlie in Trenton back in 2002.
He also joined us in Concord last year and quite the
photographer. I remember gaping in awe at his
shots of Uriah Heep from the mid-70’s when I first saw
his portfolio. He
was snapping a lot of pictures of
people throughout the weekend. Charlie has an excellent
eye for capturing candid
moments in the artful and life
affirming way you’d expect from a great photographer.
thereafter, the 3 of us packed my guitar equipment into
Dave’s minivan and headed out towards the Smokey
Mountains to rehearse with our drummer, Avery. Avery has
a nice country home with a very cozy and well equipped
practice room behind his house. As we pulled into his
driveway, we could hear him working on David Byron’s
You Sleep?” (from ON THE ROCKS).
We both broke into
wide smiles when we saw one another for the first time
in over a year! I had the pleasure of playing
at last year’s Heepvention in Concord. In fact, we had
all rehearsed together in much the same way on the
before the Concord event. Although Avery wasn’t really
a Heepster when we asked him to first participate in
year’s show, he went above and beyond the call of
duty to bail us out of a tough situation last year. I
felt like we bonded
almost instantly as musicians, even
though we were expecting him to learn material that wasn’t
This year, he was once
again coming to the rescue in a very big way.
Originally, he was only going to be playing the
Rock set with us. But after some very frustrating last
minute cancellations, Dave asked him if he’d take a
the songs we had for the Heep set. With barely
a week’s notice, Avery began learning as many as 20
He shocked and
impressed me when he wanted to begin the rehearsal with
“The Magician’s Birthday”, a song I didn’t
he’d want to tackle. We started from there and
continued to go through as much material as we could
course of the next six hours with only a few
brief breaks! Avery’s work ethic has always amazed me,
so I stayed the
course and put callouses upon my
My good friends Ron
Mann and Mac Steagall came in from North Carolina
towards the end of the rehearsal. They actually
out towards Avery’s house to meet up with us that
evening. Ron hadn’t slept in over 24 hours at that
point and was
pretty worn out, yet still watched us go
through many songs that evening. Mac plugged in and
rehearsed with us for an
hour or so on songs like “Day
Of The Eagle”, “Mistreated”, “Razamanaz” and
“Won’t Get Fooled Again”.
We finally called it a
night around 11 PM, when I broke down my equipment once
again and packed up for Dave’s house.
We both turned
in early that night, as we knew we had a long weekend
It was my third
Heepvention - one more highlight of my life,
especially because of the special dedication to David
When I heard the opening song,
"Sunrise" I was really impressed! I was in
the audience and had a chance to listen to the
from outside. I think that we have improved a lot
since the previous years Heepventions!
Many thanks to the
hosts, fellows-musicians and all those who helped with
something or just listened. Hopefully, I'll get a
from the Heepvention eventually. It would be
interesting to watch and listen from outside. I just
got back from a very
long trip and have not had much
time to formulate my thoughts for the occasion but I guess,
we'll have a chance to leave
our comments on the
Heepvention'05 website as we did before for the
To all, it is hard to
believe that HV05 has come and gone. I really
appreciated being able to participate this year. In
between the time that I committed to come and the actual
event, I had fractured (in late May) my right cheekbone
and eyesocket in five places which necessitated major
surgery. So it was the first time I got to play out in
months...especially since it was Heep songs live that I
only get to jam on at home. Other HV notables - It was a
major flashback to my "ute" to be out at the
Waffle House and IHOP at 3 a.m. in the morning - when
was the last time I did that????. Another nod to my
youth, was the fact that the Prince stocked Rolling Rock
beer of which I consumed too many to count over the
course of the weekend. The relevance here is my first
exposure to Heep was at age 16 listening to my uncle's
8-track tape of Live '73 while consuming too many
bottles of ROLLING ROCK. And the feeling of being
"on the road" with my vehicle loaded up
with my gear - all 1,400 miles of it (roundtrip) - was a
first. Going on the website and re-living it all is a
small consolation to having experienced HV again in
person, but will give me very pleasant memories. I hope
that someone has something worthwhile to post from the
acoustic songs Dave G., Rob and I did at Calhoun's and
from Sunday night at the Prince. I thought that was some
of the best stuff we did :)
HV-05 Journey Part I
I enjoyed this years
very much. We arrived on Thursday and met with Kim and
Dave for dinner. I still cannot get over how
looks! He and Kim did a phenomenal job putting this
whole thing together as well. Friday, Susan and I went
the worlds largest yard sale, it covers 3
states. Thankfully, we did not cover that much
ourselves!! Ok, I know it sounds
weird you go on
vacation and go to a yard sale!! However does that sound
any more weird than flying 700 miles to watch
list friends jamming to Heep music??!! :-) The wife
really wasn't crazy about going down there just for a
Saturday, Susan and I
went white water rafting!! Now that was cool. I actually
jumped out of the raft at one point and let
carry me for about a half a mile, I guess you could say,
I "Sail the River".
Saturday night was a
lot of fun, about 3/4 of the gang met for dinner at
Calhoun's BBQ restaurant, where we feasted on
pickings and lots of microbrew ales!! There I got to
meet several of the newer heepsters on the list and some
forum. I also had the pleasure of finally
meeting Dandy Don Ellis. He is a really great guy!! We
all partied for hours, taking
pictures, eating, drinking
and being Heepy Merry!! At one point during the evening,
Dave had us all introduce ourselves,
and I introduced
myself as Bob "All Heep is good Heep" Winward.
The he said what about Susan, and I said "oh, that
Susan "No Heep is good Heep" Winward. That
got a nice laugh from everyone, as many of us are
married to Heep haters
or those who tolerate them on our
I JUST WANTED TO SAY A GREAT BIG THANK YOU TO ALL THE HEEPSTERS THAT MADE THIS PAST WEEKEND
HAPPEN. RON, MAC, ED, BOB, ROB, DAVE C, AND OTHERS.
IN CLOSING I SAVED THE BEST FOR LAST. DAVE G. YOU DA MAN. YOU DID A GREAT JOB HOLDING THIS YEARS
HEEPVENTION. DAVE YOU ARE A TRUE FRIEND, AND WORDS CAN'T DESCRIBE THE JOB YOU DID.
Well, I better get
this written down before I forget most of it. If you
were there and read this; and find some facts that I got
backwards or forgot, I say this: I have three excuses:
Beer, lack of sleep, lots of driving - take your pick!
So, feel free to correct me and I will take advantage of
the excellent edit feature.
Once I realized that the event was going to be different
from the set list and included different musicians (I
thought it was going to be the same performers for all
songs - but that was not so), I had started taking notes
on paper napkins, but sometime during the classic rock
set my pen disappeared (I blame the beer).
This was my first time attending a Heepvention, and a
first time for me driving that far by myself, not to
mention my first time in Tennessee.
I started the day off Saturday morning on the wrong foot
- I had set my alarm for 6:45 am (or so I thought) but
did not get up until 8:20 am. Considering I had planned
to leave at 8:00 am ... By 9 am I had woken my daughter
(who got ready in record time once she realized what
time it was), eaten breakfast, fed the cats, and packed
After a quick stop at the gas station, and loading the
CD player (Uriah Heep was first of course) we were on
The drive was beautiful, the weather gorgeous with a lot
of sunshine (even though it was humid) and we arrived at
the hotel after exactly 8 hours. No sooner did I get
into their parking lot, the skies opened up to a
torrential downpour. That is when I found out I had
forgotten to pack an umbrella ... (Rain makes my hair
look like Ken Hensley's after a 2 hour performance -
judging by the old tapes) Plus there was no hair dryer
in the room. This was the first time ever I had left
mine at home, because all the motels I ever stayed in
had one. Figures - the first time I really needed one
there would be a motel without one.
We had enough time to get settled in and get ready for
dinner at 7 pm. About 6:30 pm we stepped out of the room
and ran into these people wearing Heepvention shirts.
That is how I met Keith (Famous Stranger), Dave
"Big Dog" Griffin, and Dave Crookham. We
introduced ourselves and talked for a while. Since I had
no idea how to get to the restaurant, this worked out
great. Once we got going, I just followed their car to
I felt nervous at first, because I had never met any of
these people, plus I did not know how they would react
to me having to bring my 13 year old daughter along.
That feeling did not last long however, we all had Heep
in common and I felt very much included after only a
short while there.
This was helped by the fact that Dave Griffin did an
excellent job hosting, and also had us all introduce
ourselves just before we actually started eating.
The food and atmosphere were great. We had a private
room reserved with a Buffet - BBQ, corn bread, coleslaw,
that kind of stuff. Chocolate chip cookies for dessert.
The first surprise was, that we got a small taste of
what was to come the next day. Rob Dwyer, Keith Shaw and
Dave Griffin gave an acoustic performance (after they
closed the doors and turned off the in-house radio!) of
several Heep songs, among them one of my all-time
After going back to the hotel and getting my daughter
settled there, I met up with some more of the Heepsters
at "The Prince", a local sports bar around
10:30 pm. That is when I met our very own Heepdevil
(Ron), Mac Steagall (the other TiT web dude), Heepfan,
Heep Maniac, Dave White etc. They had a band playing
there that night, and while they were very good, the
covers they chose to perform were not that great. The
best songs I remember were "Born to be Wild"
by Steppenwolf and something by Whitesnake (can't
remember what song, the conversations among us Heepsters
were too good). At about 12:30 am we had enough and
about 6 or 7 of us Heepsters that were left took our
conversation outside on the patio.
By closing time (2 am) we still did not have enough of
each others company, so we went to the Wafflehouse next
door for some much needed coffee and other sustenance.
But I am not getting any younger, so by 3:30 am I called
it a night.
The next day I woke up to rain rain rain, which
continued for the whole day. So other then a little
shopping I did not do much, and returned to the hotel
room in time to watch the Nascar race on TV (I had to
throw that in).
The race was over just in time (about 6:30 pm) to go
back to "The Prince" for the actual concert
portion of the Heepvention. The theme was of course
David Byron, because of 20 years since his passing.
I did not bring a watch, but I think they started later
than 7 pm (the scheduled time). However, It did not take long for the performers to
liven up the place with their first number:
"Sunrise", I got my first taste of Rob Dwyer
on electric guitar (after hearing him play acoustic) and
all I can say is - WOW! This was followed by another one
of my all-time favorites "Sweet Lorraine" -
Brad Todd did that song justice with his excellent
vocals I might add!
The 4th song was a very emotional performance of
"Rain" by Dave Griffin with his wife Kim on
keyboard/piano/organ (whatever the proper term is).
"Keep on Trying", "Time to Live",
"Spider Woman" were next - all excellent. I
only wish I would have paid more attention who played
what, as I said, the performers changed. Keith Shaw did
his thing with the guitar for many of the songs
featured, I just wish I could give him credit for the
right songs also. (Again I blame the beer). Mac Steagall
played most of the Bass, and as you all know, I do pay
attention to my Bass, and he just got better and better
as the night wore on (or was that because of the beer? -
nah). The only instrument that had the same performer
all night was on Drums - Avery Rogers.
Another highlight of the evening was a special
performance by this guy Don who sang vocals to
"Blind Eye". Not sure who he was, but he
sounded just like the original - and that is saying
After their ninth number "Footprints in the
snow" the first part closed with
"Circus". Dave Griffin did a special
introduction, saying a few words about Gary Thain, the
main writer of this song. My eternal gratitude goes to
Dave for that special tribute. I can't get enough of
that song, so what better way to come to close for
intermission. Beer or no beer, that part I will not
If memory serves me correctly, the door prizes were
Then came the performance of a list of some classic
songs by a guest band, I am afraid I can't say much, as
that is when I took my daughter back to the hotel, as it
was getting late for her. Another reason I missed most
of it is because Rob Dwyer lugged in two bags of CDs,
VHS tapes, and audio cassette tapes of all kinds of
music/bootlegs for us to rifle through and take home.
How nice of him!
The highlights of the 3rd set which followed (the second
set list for Heep songs performed by the Heepsters)
- July Morning (never heard that one done by anyone
other than Heep) and I must say it was superb.
- The Magician's birthday - Keith Shaw did a really
awesome vocal performance, and Dave White and Rob Dwyer
did their little electric guitar dual - you had to be
there to understand how great they are.
Circle of Hands ended the musical part, but the night
was far from over. Unfortunately, some songs from the
2nd Heep setlist were omitted - like Gypsy, Suicidal
Man, and Pilgrim. I had really looked forward to those.
After some more beer (of course) and good conversation,
we said our first good-byes at The Prince around 1 or 2
am. However, a bunch of us (including yours truly) were
not ready to end this yet, so we took our little party
to IHOP (International House of Pancakes), which is a
step or two above the Wafflehouse, plus coffee and food
were a really good idea by then.
When we could linger there no longer, we went out into
the parking lot for those final and difficult good-byes.
I believe they took about half an hour, and it was hard.
Well, my intention for Sunday had been to not stay up
until 3:30 am like the night before (because of the long
drive on Monday), but I am afraid I exceeded that goal
in the wrong direction - this time it was 5 am by the
time I finally got to bed.
Got up at 9:45 am and still did not beat the cleaning
crew - we were supposed to be out by 11 am and they
showed up at 10:15 am. So I am hauling my shit out into
the car while they impatiently waited to get the room
Uriah Heep went back in the CD player and off we went.
It rained pretty much all the way home, still made it in
exactly 8 hours.
Got home at around 7:30 pm. Was still up by 9:30 pm -
too wound up, so I dragged the DVD player into the
bedroom, hooked it up, and started watching the DVD's we
brought back. I finally had to end my Heep weekend at
around 2:30 am Tuesday morning - the "old"
part in me kicking in and demanding some sleep.
Rita Mishoe and
it's the weekend and time for me to get my review in
for HV2005 in Knoxville Tennessee.
at the motel around 11am Saturday morning. Got
unpacked and watched some TV..Called Dave Griffen to
let him know we were here. Later on out chatting with
Ed H. around the pool for about and hour I guess.
Didnt know where anyone else was. So just hung around
the motel until the Barbecue at Calhouns at 7pm.
met some very nice people at Calhouns. Chatted with
losts of Heepsters we had never met.. It was nice
meeting all of you, and had a great dinner. Dave G and
Rob played some acoustic Heep songs and we sang along.
dinner we went to the Prince to check out the band and
of course the stage where we would be playing Sunday
night. The band was pretty good and really could
get a feel of what the next day would bring. This
would be my first HV since my minor stroke and I guess I
was a little anxious to get up there and do my thing
along with everyone else.
came with a breakfast and then we were at the prince
to rehearse. Unloaded the Yamaha electronic Baby Grand
we brought with us and set it up for the sound man. As
it turned out it's a good thing we brought it with us
even though at 88 keys it was a monster. We rehearsed
for probably about 4 to 5 hours and things didnt go as
bad as I thought they might after a year away. Some of
the songs we hit on the first try. Others well, need
tweaking..but it was fun none the less just being
around all the guys helped me out big time...I think I
felt the most comfortable as I have ever been at this
function. It was different, at least for me. Everyone
seemed relaxed even when things werent going so well
with certain songs..We worked out the kinks and
everyone put in the hours.
night 6pm I enter a pool tourney along with Amber and
I have to play her first round. I thought about just
letting her win. That last 2 sec..I went on to get 2nd
place in the tourney. Havent played pool in at least
It's 7:20 and Dave G starts off the HV2005 with
some letters from Heep members and former member Ken
Hensley. Then it's show time. I think that the nerves
really get going crazy just before the first song. Oh
how the first song can have an impact on the rest of
the night. "Sunrise" just like in '73 for
Heep, was the starter this year for the Heepsters.
Dave White started the Keys and Dave G as always
got it going and Keith and I put in the harmonies. I
think we did pretty good but how you hear it from the
stage can be different on tape. Yes it was being
recorded by at least several different machines. I
have to admit that in the back of my mind was the song
"How do you Sleep" as it was on my mind the
entire night. I really could not wait to do that one.
We were running behind and time was getting away from
us on the last set of the night after the guest band
performed between Heep sets. I thought that the
Classic sets went well except when I came in to
early and Rob nudged me to shutup(in a nice way) until
his solo was done(LOL we hadnt rehearsed Mr Crowley at
all). Rob is so cool when he does that Maybe
it's the Fire in his eyes when you step on a solo....LOL..
Anyway, it's time for last set and Rob comes over to
me and says, "would you be offended if we cut
"How do You Sleep"? I said , No not that
one, pleae cut another, I have learned and
rehearsed ithat one for over a month. I didnt
know the song 30 days earlier..Just listened a few
times over a period of 5 years or so. I am glad we
didnt cut it as it went extremely well. Most of
the Heep songs went well that night. Oh they could
have been better in some spots like the ending of
Magician's Birthday, Wow was that a riot. All in all I
think it was a grand ole time for all of us getting
back together and playing the music we know and love
from the band we have known almost forever. Wanna
thank Heep Dog Griffen, Mac, Rob, Ron, John
White, Keith and Avery and of course
Dave White who was really missed last year by
all of us at HV2004 and all the Heepsters who
travelled lots of miles to be there for that special
evening. Amber and I enjoyed every minute of our stay
and Amber Todd
HV-05 Journey Part II
On Sunday, Susan and I
took a brunch cruise on a steamboat on the Tennessee
River. Then back to the hotel to rest up for the grand
finale!! We made it over to the Prince (the jam venue)
around 5 and got to watch some of the final practice
sessions. Then there was the Heepster pool
tournament!! This is going to be a classic event
for future gatherings. I barely beat Amber Todd, only
because when she knocked the 8 ball in, the white one
followed it into the pocket. Then I endured a long hard
fought contest with Don Ellis, which went down to both
of us just needing to sink the 8 ball to nail down the
victory. I think we both missed 6 times before Don put
our contest out of its misery by slamming the 8 ball
into the corner pocket, leaving me in the jaws of
defeat. At least Susan did get a trophy for 3rd place.
She beat Mac to claim 3rd place. I guess you could say
he was behind the 8 ball, from hoisting quite a few too
many Miller LItes!! :-)
Shortly after the pool
tournament the Jam got underway. I can't review the
whole thing, but can mention some highlights. First off,
Dave (the artist formerly known as Big Dog) can still
belt out the tunes. He has such a pure resonant voice,
sort of like Goalby but with the power and passion of
Byron. The drummer did a great job and worked the
entire set list. Another highlight was Don Ellis singing
Blindeye, how appropriate. He did a superb job and has a
good voice. Susan kept mentioning to me about the
awesome guitarist, she was referring to Rob. He doesn't
just play it, he wails on it with a great style.
Speaking of Rob, we got to see the video of him debating
Ozzy on national tv in May!!
The end of the evening
was the hardest part, saying goodbye. All good things
must end, and this jam and the whole evening was
phenomenal!! Some of us went to IHOP after the vention,
and got to talk for another hour or so, and then it was
over!! I had the time of my life and can barely wait
until next year!!
This is Bob "all
Heep is good Heep" saying Roger over and out!!!
Just A Fantastic
Time!! It is always great to get together with friends
& enjoy music & fellowship. The fact that this
gathering is because of your love of Heep makes it that
much more exciting. My wife Pat & I enjoyed the
weekend very much & only wished we hadn't still in
Piegon Forge, so we wouldn't have had the 1 hour drive
back each night.
Sat. night's dinner:
meeting with fellow Heepsters great food & good
music, our first meeting was with Brad & Amber Todd
whom arrived first and we we're right behind them as the
rest got there it was great to meet & put face's to
the names on the list. Doug & Jackie from Atlanta,
Bob (All Heep is Good Heep) & his much much better
half Susan (No Heep is good Heep) Winward, Ed, Charlie,
Keith, Rob, Ron, Mac, John, & one or two other's I
missed & of course Dave (Big Dog) & his much
much better half Kim Griffin, whom did a wonderful job
setting up the event. Thanks very much for all your hard
work. As we all wrapped up feeding our face's, Rob &
Keith did a couple acoustic Heep songs to get us in the
mood for more. They did a very fine job, Thanks guy's.
We then headed to the venue for the event the Prince
Deli & Bar, there we listen to the Band for a little
while. My wife & I didn't stay long, we had the hour
drive back to Piegon Forge. Which in rertospect in would
have been nice to be closer for the main reason of being
able to socilise more with the Heepsters. But the event
started in fine fashion.
Sun. Night's Event:
Pat & I got there just in time for the opening set,
missed the pool tourament, & the chance to enjoy
conversation with some of the Heepsters. As the music
got under way I was amased at the talent on stage, for
the short time in which these musician's had to practise
they did a excellent job, Kudo's all around!! Rob,
Keith, Dave, Avery, Brad, and the rest did a wonderful
job. And Mr. Griffin you have a great voice just a super
job. Personally I thought that the classic rock set was
great and well worth it. As Dave said we all have other
fav's in music it's just that Uriah Heep is and always
will be #1 with us all. And the fact that our love for
Uriah Heep Music has brought us together & still
dose makes the event that much better!
As the evening went Ed
& Charlie were capturing the event on video &
photo's, hope to see it soon. Don Ellis did a fine job
with Rob & Keith on Blind Eye & Brad & Keith
also did a great job singing Magician's Birthday!! Rob
did a great job on guitar all evening but shined on Mr.
Crowley with Brad at the Mic. We also got to view the TV
show Rob was on with his hero Ozzy, what an experience
for him! And to hear of the Heepvention in 2002 when
Heep themsleves showed up, this had to make all the
effort in doing Heepvention's worth it! I know that I am
not the only one whom wishes I was there, but just the
chance to hear about it and to know that Uriah Heep
knows that they still have fan's in the states! All in
all a great time!
reminds me of a gathering which some of my old band
member's & I have been doing for the past three
years, we just call it the Get Together! Here in
Michigan we tend to have long winter's and as the days
go on we get cabin fever from being cooped up so long,
so we decided to have a gathering in March to enjoy
fellowship and music. Sounds very much like Heepvention,
only that Heep music is what has brought the Heepster's
together. Great friend's & Great times with friends
makes life worth living.
Please don't skip a
year of Heepvention the fact that music has brought us
together makes ti that much more important not to let
the fire go out. And here's to the torch holders
Ron Mann. Mac Steagall, & Mr. Dave White it was
great to finally meet you guys, wish I had taken time to
talk with all of you more, so much to talk about and so
little time. Doug & I talked about Heep some
and the fact that this Heepvention was to Honor David
Byron, to me he will always be the voice of Uriah Heep,
but I could tell that Doug found Bernie to be a better
singer. We all have our fav's but the fact that Uriah
Heep in one form or another has brought us together is
the key. I know there are a few I missed and here's
hoping to see you all and more at the next Heepvention
in PA. I know Uriah Heep has meant a lot to all of us in
different ways and in different forms. But keeping the
torch lit is the goal, and here's to a New Heep album to
celebrate in 2006! Dave & Kim Thanks again for a
wonderful time, may we all meet again next year with a
new album and the chance to enjoy our common bond Uriah
P.S. Ron I will get
the picture's I took to you soon, I will send them here
to the list!
All the best to all
My Heepvention Journal
- Part III (Sunday)
Both me and Dave White
woke up around 9:30 AM feeling overtired and anxious
about the day ahead.
We had stayed out late watching this so-so covers band
play at the Prince with some of the other Heepsters
(Mac, Ron, Keith, Brad, Amber, Dave, Kim, Dave Crookham,
Charlie Gibb, & Rita). Afterwards, we extended the
evening with a mid-morning visit to the awful Waffle
House. With barely 5 hours sleep, we took a drive
downtown to try to find some coffee, breakfast, shampoo
(which the hotel failed to provide) & some saline
solution for my contacts. Little did we realize that
this would turn into a scavenger hunt that would find us
briefly getting lost!
I finally got my stuff
together and arrived to set up my equipment at the
Prince around 1 PM. We spent the next 5 hours rehearsing
and sound checking for the show. It was a LONG day of
playing. Dave and I went back to the hotel for a very
short break around 5:45 PM, only to return an hour later
to play for the rest of the night. I'd say we probably
played for at least 6 to 7 hours that day. I have
lots of 'people' memories from Sunday night, but I
decided to tackle the set while its fresh on my mind. I
think our finest moment was "July Morning",
which was almost ethereal (as it ought to be)! From my
side of the stage, I couldn't hear any bum notes and
everyone was really into it. It was one of those songs
were nearly all of the musicians were on the stage at
favorites include the acoustic set with "Footprints
In The Show" & "Circus",
"Mistreated", "Time To Live" (which
we FINALLY nailed), "Whiter Shade Of Pale"
[with Dave White on lead organ], Mr. Crowley [my big
solo showcase], "How Do You Sleep?" [very cool
to do this one for the first time!] and "The
Magician's Birthday". "Magician" was
going beautifully until we reached the final 2 minutes
of the song when we had the most magnificent train
wreck! I think I botched a few chords and then Avery got
lost and came to a complete stop. I tried to get the
train back on the tracks after that, but it quickly
collapsed into laughter. We were a little embarrased by
that one, but we were too relaxed to care at that point.
It's amazing we even tackled that one without a full
I thought all of the
musicians really rose to the occasion this time around.
Andre really shined on the keyboards this year. I really
wish we could have done "Return To Fantasy"
during the show, since he sounded so good on that one
during rehearsal. Keith was a great asset on both
guitars and vocals, even bravely tackling lead vocals on
several songs I especially enjoyed the acoustic stuff we
did together. It's always a pleasure to play with Mr.
Dave White, who traded off with me on
"Mistreated" and played some great keys on the
opener ("Sunrise"), "Whiter Shade Of
Pale" and the closer ("Circle Of Hands").
He did his shred solo during the introduction for
"Magician's Birthday", while Avery wondered
what the heck he was doing?!
Both John and Mac did
a solid job on bass, probably covering more material
than they either really wanted to tackle in the first
place! It was great fun playing with Brad, who picked
some of my favorite songs in the set to tackle. What
more can I say about Dave Griffin that hasn't already
been said? He was really the star of this show in more
ways than one. A true professional all the way. I very
much enjoyed his rendition of "Won't Get Fooled
Again", as well as a beautiful "July
Morning". But the one who really saved the
day (for a 2nd year in a row) was Avery Rogers who
played drums on EVERY SONG! Not an easy feet for someone
who isn't a devoted Heepster to begin with! It was great
jamming with him for the 2nd year ago. We bonded so
quickly as a rhythm section that we pretty much guided
each other through the set list. And when things got a
bit long in the tooth, we'd try to outdo each other with
silly faces. Avery's both a fine drummer and a
great human being. I do hope I'll have the privilege of
playing with him again.