And as his buddy Eric Kelly says, Latini has the dream team lined up behind him. Brother Jim Latini handles the drums with obvious control he's not one of those hyper drummers who hit too hard, and he manages the time stops and rhythm changes easily. And, as Eric says, Jim "sings like a bird. His harmonies make the show." Bassist John Sperendi doesn't simply create backbeat he also adds harmonies, carefully filling in more quiet moments. He giggles a lot too. Kurt Wolak's performance on keyboards and accordion is flawless. John says Wolak has played piano since he was about four years old, so that makes sense. He's got real intense eyes, like a hawk strong and brooding.
Shining most brightly from the stage is Latini's love for music making, his family, and his friends. His ballad "Yesterday I Painted Your Room" written to his daughter who's gone away to college won him the grand prize in the 2004 Metro Detroit Songwriting contest and first place in the singer-songwriter category at the Dallas Songwriters Association contest. It is so sad.
Whenever I see or talk to John, he always demands, "How are the boys?" meaning my own children. He really wants to know. I think I'll start introducing myself as "Charmie, writer of people's stories, daughter of Carl, and mother to Peter, Sam, and Gabriel."