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March 25, 1988 - Image 57

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1988-03-25

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play music." And play music
they did! As the major bar
and bat mitzvah-wedding
band of the time, the group
played performances at Oak
Park High School, for friends'
parties, for AZA and BBG
group functions, at area high
schools and opened for the
Dave Clark Five, the Who, the
Supremes and the Four Tops.
On local television, the group
appeared on Swingin' Time
and on Club 1270. They were
in demand at Windsor record
hops and played in Hamilton,
Leamington and Sarnia,
Ont., as well. For four years
the band enjoyed performing,
but the reality of "education
first, fun next," set in, accord-
ing to Finn, and the band
finally dissolved in 1969.
Finn left for college and to-
day teaches acting and
theater courses at Southfield-
Lathrup High School. Lewis
left to pursue record produc-
tion in London, England, was
a producer in Nashville,
Tenn., for five years and for
the past ten years has resid-
ed in California. Among his
credits is production work on
albums for rock star Dan
Fogelberg. He says he is semi-
retired from the music
business, and devotes much of
his time to managing his real
estate investments.
Nelson earned a computer
science degree at the Univer-
sity of Michigan and left the
state for Charleston, S.C.,
where he worked as a solo
musician. He "liked the
weather and the people" and
decided to stay. lbday, he
owns a computer-related
business. Hirshfield is in New
York, a professor of computer
science at Hamilton College.
All have married. Lewis is
the father of one, Nelson has
four, Hirshfield has three
children and Finn has a

The four expressed mixed
emotions about making
music a career. Lewis, who
played bass, became a session
musician, but was lured by
the console — a giant elec-
tronic board used for mixing
music and voice tracks. He
hooked up with Pioneer
Sound in Detroit, and pur-
sued record producing as a
career. "I've done pretty
well;' he admits, "but I'm not
(renowned record producer)
Quincy Jones or anything."
He said he thought about
making music a career, but
decided that performing was
not his thing. "I bowed out of
being a bass player and con-
centrated on studio work. The
console is my musical instru-
ment!' Would he ever join a
band again? "Absolutely not!
There's way too much travel-

ing involved. I didn't want to
spend my life on the road."
Nelson, who played lead
guitar in the group, said he
made music his career until
he found there was less de-
mand for musicians and more
for computer programmers, so
he switched his focus. But, ac-
cording to Nelson, it really
wasn't that much of a change.
"Music and computers,
they're both the same kind of
game. Both involve fun and
creativity. I haven't changed
what I'm doing, I just chang-
ed the medium." Nelson has
no qualms about being involv-
ed in a band again, if he could
do it on weekends. Right now,
he's just content to play piano
at home.

Hirshfield said at 16, mak-
ing music a career sounded
great, but "who knows what
they want to do as a career at
16." The former rhythm
guitarist still plays infre-
quently and would join a
band again but, "I don't know
if I have the time and energy
for it!' Finn said that he, too,
thought about making music
a career, but "at the back of
our minds, realistically, we
were going to college:' After
the band split up, the former
Shy Guys drummer formed a
group with his brother, Brian,
who played guitar. Finn
played piano, and they added
another guitarist and drum-
mer. They played some jobs
around town, but Finn ad-
mits, he couldn't do it full
time now.

How the band got together
was explained by Finn.
Nelson was in another band
that was not very successful.
Finn had been a substitute
drummer for that group and
Nelson approached him about
forming their own band. Hir-
shfield was asked to join and
then word went out that the
group needed a bass player.
Lewis, who had been in
another band and had never
played bass, auditioned
anyway and got the job. "I
became a pretty good bass
player with The Shy Guys,"
he recalled. Prior to their
break-up, the group added a
keyboard player, Paul Zacks.
It was a group effort that
produced their hit record, We
Gotta Go, and it was released
on the Panik label. It can still
be found at some record col-
lector's shows. The "B" side
was Lay It On the Line. A
third song, Feel A Whole Lot
Better, was never released.
Part of the group's success
was having their record
played on local radio. They
owe the popularity of their
record in part to disc jockeys
Dick Purtan, formerly of
WKNR-AM and currently

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