How did I manage to live with a famous singer in Los Angeles? A question I tend to get when people find out one of my good friends and former roommate is Jeff Scott Soto.
Getting disappointed living in Boulder Colorado after graduating from music school, I was looking around for places to go. Two things happened. First, I was still friends with a musician named Julie whom I met at school and we would chat on occasion about music and life. Second, I got an offer from a guy who had a teaching situation that he was wanting to give up in Los Angeles.
Item two gave me a good reason to get out of Boulder. Another reason of wanting to leave was I was having a difficult time finding players that were into the music I was into and had a strong sense of musicality. I didn’t fit in there. Despite loving the area.
Back to item one. At the same time Julie and her boyfriend were living in Florida and wanting to move to LA. I had briefly met her boyfriend the winter before at NAMM and again a few months later in New York. Anyway, he was from LA and she knew the area fairly well.
The plan was for me to meet up with Julie in LA to have help looking for a place to live. Timing wise, she flew out and I drove down. For several days we’d go tooling around the Burbank & San Fernando Valley area looking at various apartments. Mainly for her and Jeff, and by proxy, I might get lucky and get an apartment in the same building to have a couple of friends nearby.
There was one moment of frustration when we were driving south on Laurel Canyon. We were coming up on an apartment complex she wanted to check out, but traffic was rough and she got a tad demanding. I ended up turning too sharp to get into a parking spot and popped my front passenger tire on the curb. FUCK!
There’s a whole story behind the adventure of getting the tired replaced. Maybe it will appear in a book about my life.
The apartment complex where I popped my tire ended up being a bust as well.
A day later Julie finds a condo in Burbank. We go check it out. She totally digs it, but the price was beyond what her and Jeff could afford. Jeff at the time was in a u-haul driving across the US with their belongings and was going completely on her word about the place.
She’s so enamored with the condo that talk comes up of asking me to be a roommate. I liked the location and the condo as well. I decided I’d be willing to split the rent 3 ways and live with them. Jeff arrived a day or two later. We signed the lease and moved into the condo overlooking Burbank and the entire valley.
It was weird being the youngest tenants in what seemed like a retirement neighborhood. It was quiet, it was safe, and we all got along.
That’s how I ended up being roommates with Jeff. The rest as the saying goes, is history.