I was born in Vallejo, California in 1965 and moved to Calistoga, California when I was 5
years old. My family had enough to keep a roof over our heads and eat well with occasional outings, but if I wanted my own bicycle, I had to build it from a box of parts my father
handed to me. After assembling the bicycle by myself, my father gave to me the first
box of tools I ever owned.
When I was 11, my best friend convinced me to take band. My first choice was drums, but since the beginning band couldn’t practically be made up of 25 drummers, I had to go with
my second choice, the clarinet. I advanced quickly and my parents purchased a used
wood clarinet for me, an Evette Master Model. I had found a new interest in music.
Throughout my grade school years, I added saxophone and auto repair to my repertoire, doing good work with both. I restored a 1952 Ford Pickup, which became my first vehicle.
I was accepted to 4 Northern California Honor Bands and 3 All State Honor Bands when
I was in high school. The first time I melded my mechanical and musical interests together
was when I purchased a 1972 Buick Skylark from my high school band director.
I spent the next 3 years at Santa Rosa Junior College studying music and the following 3
years studying auto mechanics. I became a certified mechanic, but I yearned to be
playing music. In 1994, I completed my B.A. in jazz studies concentration from Sonoma
State University. Three months later, I was sailing the high seas playing saxophone
for Princess Cruise Lines and touring the Mexican Riviera. In February of 1995, I was hired to tour with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra under the direction of Buddy Morrow. The TDO was the best musical experience of my life. I stayed out with them for 2 ½ years, touring parts of the world and almost every state in the USA. In 1997, I was ready to stay home, but I didn’t know what I would do for work. A new door was about to open. I was hired as an apprentice at Stanroy Music Center in Santa Rosa, California repairing musical instruments. The merging of my skills was finally realized. Tim Ellis began my training and a year later, Gary Meierhenry took over. Eight years and over 2000 repairs later, I find myself repairing instruments in my own shop, Anthony’s Woodwind Corner in San Rafael, California.It has been many years from my humble beginnings to running my own repair shop. I am very thankful for the support of my parents and the clarinet that served me for 20 years. I still own that clarinet, something I refuse to part with. I still own that first toolbox from my father when I was 7 years old. It holds more for me than just tools.