Steve Brosky 'Grateful' for his world
Steve Brosky, having won 21 Lehigh Valley Music Awards, is one of the Lehigh Valley's best-known singer-songwriters.
This year, at Musikfest, Brosky and his duo partner, Jimmy Meyer, are part of the Martin Guitar Lyrikplatz series, 8 p.m. Aug. 11, Frank Banko Alehouse Cinema, ArtsQuest Center, SteelStacks, 101 Founders Way, Bethlehem.
Brosky, a Whitehall Township resident, and Meyer are expected to perform some of the 11 songs from "Grateful," Brosky's CD released last month, which includes those he wrote, "Buck-A-Man Blues," "Ugly N Personal," "What Do You Mean by That," "It's Not The End Of The World," "My Coupe DeVille," "Fred," "Jimi On Guitar," "Vietnam Blues" and the title cut, plus "It's Only Money," written by singer-songwriter J.D. Hawk of Salisbury Township.
Brosky's style ranges from rock, R&B, country, garage band to Americana, with a bit of funk.
"I was influenced by artists such as the Beatles and Bob Dylan," says Brosky in a recent interview. "It's inside of me so when I write I'm influenced by these artists."
Brosky, who occasionally is backed by his Big Lil Band, mostly gigs with Meyer, who, according to Brosky, has "an interesting, fanatical way of entertaining people with the guitar." They met in 2005. Brosky has been performing since 1980.
"I needed a guitar player. We began to talk. One thing led to another and we started doing gigs together," Brosky says.
"Grateful" was produced at Dan's House Studio, Center Valley, by Brosky and Dan McKinney, who also plays keyboards on the CD.
Other musicians on the CD include Meyer, guitar; Darlene Brotztman and Doug Ashby, vocals; Suavek Zanieskienko, bass; Jim Ruffi, drums; Wayne Dillon, trumpet, flugelhorn, and Joe Vitale, saxophone.
A drawing by Lillie, the daughter of Steve and his wife, Renate, is the artwork for the CD cover. Lillie did the drawing when she was around six- or seven-years-old and she's now 33-years-old.
The CD's title song is dedicated to his wife. Brosky wrote another song for her, "You Mean The World To Me," recorded on a previous CD.
Brosky's CDs include "Steve Brosky Chronicles" (2007), "Trouble" (2005), "Limestone & James" (2000), "Hey Now! Hits From Allentown" (2000) and "Any Minute Now" (1995).
When Brosky returned to Allentown in 1969, from having served in the Army during the Vietnam War, he didn't know that writing songs and playing music would become his career. Success with "Do the Dutch (Hey Now, Let's Get Down To Allentown," an "answer song" to Billy Joel's "Allentown," brought him regional radio airplay and national publicity.
"From there, I realized I can write songs that people really like," Brosky says.
Brosky writes about what he knows and that's what his latest CD contains. He said it took him a long time to write "Vietnam Blues," which tells of his experiences as a returning Vietnam vet.
"Not The End Of The World" is about the region's economy and its residents. "It's about how unemployment is so high, and the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer," Brosky says.
On average, Brosky and Meyer play four nights a week at venues in the Lehigh Valley, Schuylkill County and New Jersey.
"My favorite thing about these gigs is that I'm able to play and people know me. The Lehigh Valley has been very good to me. People keep coming back to see me and that's what I like the best about being a local performer," says Brosky.
Of his performance attire -- usually a fedora and sunglasses -- Brosky jokes, "I believe that fashion is temporary and style is forever."
In addition to his Musikfest concert and gigs at area restaurants, Brosky performs at noon Aug. 6, Allentown Arts Park, adjacent to the Baum School of Art along Fifth Street between Hamilton and Linden streets.
"In the future, I would like to release another CD. There's another CD inside of me just asking to come out," Brosky says.