B O B B Y
B E R G E
ZEPHYR ...TOMMY BOLIN ...BUDDY MILES
SPECIAL GUEST ON INTERVIEWING THE LEGENDS
In the spring of 1970 Bobby Berge got a call from legendary guitarist Tommy Bolin in Boulder, and he said he wanted him to come out and audition with his band Zephyr. Bobby had been listening to their first album, and absolutely loved Tommy’s playing and the sound of the group. After flying out and hitting it off with the group with an initial audition, he immediately moved out to Boulder. He played with Zephyr for the next year or so and it was an extremely exciting experience. Boulder was a thriving musical Mecca at the time, and they would play in and around Boulder at small outdoor mini-Woodstock types of concerts.
They played in Denver at Mammoth Gardens along with Joe Cocker and Leon Russell. For a good year they flew to many major cities and played at huge concerts on the same bill as musical greats like Steve Winwood, Mountain, Fleetwood Mac, the Kinks, and Iggy Pop to name a few. In the fall of 1970, he played drums on the second Zephyr album Going Back to Colorado at Electric Lady Studios in NYC with the great Eddie Kramer as engineer. This was Bobby’s first major experience playing with Tommy Bolin and it was fantastic to say the least.
Bobby was asked if he did play on “The Grind” on the Teaser album. He did play on that track, but somehow the record company got the info wrong on the cover.
Bobby says … Tommy was always outgoing, upbeat, friendly, and extremely funny! He was so much fun for a drummer to play with. I loved to play off him and copy his lightning fast riffs as we jammed. I learned a lot about weird time signatures from him. I miss those hippie days and miss Tommy and playing with one of the greatest.
On Bobby’s work with the great Buddy Miles … Buddy’s a very talented, soulful man. During 1975-76 I did more work with him than with Tommy Bolin. I was switching back and forth with projects, mainly recording. I did the More Miles Per Gallon album with Buddy in 1975, and Bicentennial — A Gathering Of The Tribes in 1976. When we played live Buddy would play drums for a few tunes, then I’d hop on the skins and Buddy would go out front and sing. We had a five-piece horn section, a funky bass player, and keyboards. It was wild playing with both artists during that period (1975-76). I’ll put up some Buddy stuff some time, kind of a disco feel but very funky!
For more information about Bobby Berge