I was born and raised
in San Francisco.
I listened to the big band sounds in my early years and
loved the jazzy vocalists. I took piano lessons, ballet,
tap dancing, and modern dance. By Jr. High I had started
listening to KDIA the soul radio station, and I watched
Dick Clark's Dance Party on TV. During high school I was
singing and dancing in a doo-wop group, and hung out at
Mel's drive-in where the outdoor waitresses wore roller
skates. I cruised Mission St. in my '52 Studebaker and sped
along the great highway next to Ocean Beach where Playland
was the place to go, never knowing that in later years I
would be performing at the same location to be known as
The Family Dog.
As far as how I starting playing drums? Well, I guess I
first noticed that it was the drums that made me dance.
I began sitting in with any band that would let me just
to get the experience of playing drums in a band (great
fun). I dreamed of playing drums in a all-girl group, and
that's what happened.
It was 1966 in the Haight Ashbury district that I met the
girls who would become The Ace of Cups, and I would be
to this group until 1972.
The Ace of Cups opened for Jimmy Hendrix in Golden Gate
We played The Avalon Ballroom, The Fillmore Auditorium where
Bill Graham introduced our opening with the other local
bands, to mention a few: QuickSilver, Jefferson Airplane,
The Sons of Champlin, and Big Brother and the Holding Co.
with Janis Joplin. One of the most memorable gigs for me
was opening with the Sons of Champlin for The Band (Big
Pink) at Winterland. The Ace of Cups are noted on The Last
Waltz CD jacket.
The Aces went on tour with Jefferson Airplane to Vancouver,
BC, then on to Chicago's south side to open for the blues
greats Nick Gravenities, Michael Bloomfield, Sam Lay, Al
Jackson, Buddy Miles, Muddy Waters and more. As a member
of the Ace of Cups we recorded on many of these performers
record albums as background singers. (listed under studio
session recordings, coming soon)
After 6 yrs. of drumming and singing backups, I learned
to take on singing lead vocals while playing drums. I
The Fairfax St. Choir lead by Marla Hansen (Ace) with the
players from the Tazmanian Devils, David Freiberg from
as well as Peter Tork from The Monkeys, Van Morrison for
a short stint, and members from the now Light House Singers.
There were at lease 16 singers as well as tap dancers Lynnie
Karter and Christopher that made this group a novelty.
big gig was for Bill Graham opening for Crosby, Stills,
Nash, and Young.
I continued my musical ventures with many bands, and one
was the Ceta Big Band in Santa Rosa, CA. We played all
schools in and around the area bringing them the history
of Jazz. I then joined The Bob Simmons Band which played
casuals, clubs, and for a few years played at the Silverado
Country club in Napa. I had also fronted my own band Lady
Di & The
Dukes for weddings and private parties.
with The David Hardiman Quintet, and the band Borderline
from West Marin. I am now putting all my years of experience
into recording original tunes with my long-term boyfriend
guitar, does web design (theaceofcups.com), and is the
engineer for the tunes we have written together.
I continue to play music with The Ace of Cups at our
reunions, and I hope to collaborate with them again soon
on new material
as well as some Ace classics.
My heartfelt thanks goes to Ambrose Hollingsworth the
Ace's first manager, and to Ron Polte our second manager
friendship is everlasting, and a special new friend Alec
Palao of Ace Records in London, who understood the importance
of a generation of music that deserved to be heard.
With Love and Admiration, the main drum teachers in my
life: Jerry Granelli, Chuck Brown and Pete Magadini.
Thank you, Thank you, and Thank You,