Musicians aid friend at nursing home with jam session

Veteran area saxophone player Al Fuller, seated front, is accompanied by Barry Zimmer on coronet, Jim Weiss on bass guitar, Pete Greco on keyboards and Neah Covington on vocals. Photo by Stu Pedasso

Saxophone player Al Fuller, in Bradley Bay Health Center rehabbing a knee, can’t get out to play with his regular musician friends, so they came to play with him.

A number of local musicians and vocalists came to the nursing home recently to have a jam session that made everyone, including Al and numerous nursing-home residents who crowded into the day room to enjoy the music, feel better.

Al, age 75, already had his saxophone; he insisted it be brought to him when he went into the nursing home. He plays it, accompanied by a CD player, to help ease his pain.

Accompanying Al were Jim Weiss on bass, Dr. Pete Greco on keyboards, Barry Zimmer on coronet and Ernie Rickard on drums. Veteran local vocalists Doris Long and Neah Covington joined in to keep the party swinging.

All are Friday night regulars at the Waterbury Coach House in Lakewood, where they jam together.

“Al played sax when he was younger, but put it away for 30 years,” longtime friend Ed Pivcevich said. “Then he was at the Coach House one night years ago and got the itch. He’s played there almost every Friday since, for free, just for the love of the music. It has saved his life.”

“Our residents and staff really enjoyed this wonderful event,” Bradley Bay Health Center owner John O’Neill said. “It’s things like this that keep us all young.”

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Volume 6, Issue 6, Posted 9:26 AM, 03.18.2014