I just got an e-mail from my very best friend growing up and he's leaving to go open 5 dates for the Stones in Japan and he's taking Billy Sheehan as his bass player. His name is Richie Kotzen and we grew up in this tiny little town in Pennsylvania- you can't even imagine how podunk the area is. We met when we were 13 and were so glad to find someone else who loved music that we latched onto each other for dear life. I used to ride my bike to his house every day after school and we'd try to play guitar together. After about 4 months, I remember, we worked up the nerve to invite his dad in to listen to us play a song- "Satisfaction" by the Stones. now that I think of it, we actually had the 3rd chord wrong (and there are only 3). We started our very first band together, both playing guitar, and spent about 2 years looking for a bass player- we could never find a good one. One day I showed up at practice and there was a P bass and and Peavey TNT in the corner. I got all excited and said "fantastic, who's playing bass?" and everybody looked at me. His Dad had bought them and that's how I became a bass player. When I look back at where we came from and realize that I make a living playing music and he's played all over the world with Poison, Mr. Big and as a solo artist, I can barely believe how lucky we both are. I'm so proud of him getting to play with the Stones. Life is amazing sometimes.