PBS/CPTV LIFE DOCUMENTARY on Rob the Drummer
Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) aired a feature biography about Rob the Drummer three times in May 2002. CPTV’s finest — headed by producers Larry Rivkin and Judy Pansullo — created a moving tribute to Rob’s career in music and his dedication to teaching kids about the joys of sports and the arts as an alternative to the dangers of drugs.
The show included clips of Rob the Drummer wowing students at Coginchaug High School in Durham, CT. It also followed him to the Maple Tree club in Simsbury to capture his captivating drumming with guitarist Jeff Pevar and Friends. The PBS affiliate had no trouble finding many people to sing Rob’s praises.
Tonight Show Drummer Marvin ‘Smitty’ Smith, shared, “The energy Rob brings when he steps out on stage, kids gravitate toward that. He delivers this positive energy when he enters a room.
He just makes you feel alive!” Wynton Marsalis concurred, saying, “Rob has that original joy – he’s never lost it.” The CPTV special does a wonderful job in capturing Rob’s energy and joy. We hope that other PBS affiliates are compelled to air the program as well.
ROB THE DRUMMER Performs at the White House!
West Hartford, CT – Robert L. Gottfried, better known to thousands of kids as “ROB THE DRUMMER,” performed his worldwide, trademark theme – Pro-Arts, Pro-Sports, Anti-Drug, Self-Esteem – at the Annual 2002 Easter Egg Roll on the White House lawn on April 1st in Washington, D.C. Rob performed his dynamic percussion concert in three, 20 minute segments amidst the launch of the brightly colored Easter eggs.
25,000 laughing and joyful children and their families enjoyed the performance. Rob even caught a glimpse of the President and First Lady.
Jelly beans, bunnies and a variety of entertainment are included for the children of the D.C. area and the dependents of the government officials. This performance marks the third invitation and performance of this West Hartford resident at the popular national holiday event.
Recording Project Completed with Light Vector
Rob recently assisted New Jersey-based Light Vector in completing their debut recording. Rob met the band when they approached him following a performance with Jeff Pevar at Manhattan’s Dark Star cafe.
Impressed by his drumming style and ‘vibe,’ band leaders John and Caron Cafaro invited Rob to join the recording project on the spot. Rob describes Light Vector’s sound as reminiscent of the Mahavishnu Orchestra and Chick Corea’s Return to Forever during the period that it featured the pure vocals of Gayle Moran. Like that band, Light Vector’s lyrics focus on the spiritual.
Rob believes that the recording sessions went great. Rob plays both drums and percussion and says that the recording evokes an unusual atmosphere. He describes Caron Cafaro as an ANGEL and her husband John as a masterful composer.
Rob is clearly proud and excited by the project. Rob advises, “If you like ‘Touched by an Angel’ on TV, I think you’ll love this Music!! It’s spiritual and good for the soul!”
Russell Kleinknecht CD Completed
Russell Kleinknecht recently completed his new CD, Out of My Hands, featuring Rob the Drummer on Little Knight Records. Rob reports: “My new CD project is with long-time friend and musical associate Russ Kleinknecht from New Jersey and Lieutenant’s Island, Cape Cod. Russ spent several weeks with Jim Messina of Loggins and Messina fame, who encouraged him to record his beautiful tunes and lyrics.
We used my familiar and trusted team of Tom Majesky on Guitar, Joey Grieco on Keys, and Dave “Crazy Legs” Stoltz on Bass!! Magic always happens with these guys….and the combination with Russ was formidable. We named the band Little Knight.
The CD reminds me of Kenny Rankin’s best stuff. I’m really hopeful that we’ve created something that will appeal to both the pop market and the musician’s ear. Recording was completed at the Tape Works under the warm and watchful eyes of Doug Kupper and Bill Ahern engineering.”
Appearances with Jeff Pevar and Friends
November 21, 2007: Black-Eyed Sally’s, Hartford, CT
April 7, 2007: Hungry Tiger, Manchester, CT
April 6, 2007: Maple Tree, Simsbury, CT
December 8 – 9, 2006: Maple Tree, Simsbury, CT
Jeff Pevar is an extraordinary guitarist who has recorded and toured with such notable musicians as Joe Cocker, Ray Charles, David Crosby, Graham Nash, Donald Fagen (co-leader of Steely Dan), Jonatha Brooke, Marc Cohn, Rickie Lee Jones, James Taylor and Carly Simon.
Jeff currently serves as co-leader of CPR (Crosby, Pevar and Raymond) with David Crosby and Crosby’s son, James Raymond. During the summers of 2004 and 2005, Jeff toured with Crosby, Stills and Nash, adding color and harmonies while trading solos with Stephen Stills.
Jeff has also toured in recent years with Phil Lesh (former bassist with the Grateful Dead), Blue Floyd (playing blues-ified versions of Pink Floyd tunes), and Jazz is Dead (a super-group specializing in Grateful Dead songs with Alphonso Johnson, T. Lavitz, and Rod Morgenstein).
When he’s not on tour or relaxing at home on the west coast,, Jeff often visits with family and fans back in his native Connecticut where stops in local blues clubs often feature his friend Rob the Drummer in the drum chair.