California dreamin’ on such a winter’s day

I’m an Ohio kid, born and raised in Cleveland, which lays claim to the title of “rock and roll capital,” and is home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.

Thanks to great radio stations there — WIXY-1260 on AM in the ’60s and WMMS 100.7 on FM in the ’70s — I was exposed to the very best that rock and roll had to offer, from Motown to the British Invasion, from country rock to progressive rock, from The Stones to The Boss.  I absorbed it all, and I loved the power that rock music had to take me to faraway places, real or fictional, better than anything.

IMG_1855One of those real places was California.  The West Coast.  The Left Coast.  I live here now — in Santa Monica, a mile from the beach — and in many ways, it’s been a dream come true.  Decades ago, this Ohio boy was thoroughly mesmerized by images of this magical place, immortalized in hundreds of songs about California, many from my (our) childhood and young adulthood.  Read More