If I had to point to one event in my life that changed everything, I would have to say it was becoming a member of the New York Saxophone Quartet. I joined the quartet, already a world-renowned group, in 1978, and becoming a member helped put me on the map. I suddenly had a forum for my playing and writing.
Here is a picture of the quartet on the Johnny Carson, “Tonight Show,” January 16, 1986. We had just done a concert with pianist/composer, Dick Hyman, at the “92nd St. Y,” in New York City, where Dick had written a few novelty pieces for piano and quartet. Wally Kane, a former member of the Tonight Show band in NY and got in touch with the producer, and pitched the idea of the quartet playing those pieces on the show. Pictured left to right, Wally Kane, Billy Kerr, Dennis Anderson and Ray Beckenstein.