In the early 1970s Bob and his wife were invited to a
double wedding involving Dallas Taylor, the drummer
with Crosby Stills Nash & Young, and Al Perkins, a
pedal steel guitar player with the Flying Burrito Brothers.
By chance, Linda Ronstadt was also at the wedding
and was seated at Bob’s table. She announced she was
trying to put together a band. Ronstadt was well aware
of Bob’s reputation and invited him to join her band,
which he did.
Bob describes Ronstadt as a true professional in addition
to having a great voice. Touring with Ronstadt was
hectic. On one tour, they played sixty-five shows in sixty
Ronstadt always opened her concerts by greeting the
people of the city she was in and identifying that city by
name. Near the end of the tour, she asked the audience
which city she was in. The crowd assumed it was just a
joke. But neither Linda nor anyone in the band were
certain which city they were in. Bob said he felt exactly
like Ronstadt. He didn’t know the date, the day of the
week, and wasn’t even sure which month it was.
Bob announced to Peter Asher, Linda Ronstadt’s
manager, that he planned to leave the band and go to
law school. Asher urged him to rethink his position.
He told Bob he could offer him a percentage interest
in Ronstadt’s next album, which Asher claimed would
be a great big hit. Her next album, “Heart Like a
Wheel” was a great big hit. Bob finished the tour, but
remained committed to change the focus in his life.
Even after he left the rock and roll touring world, he
remained an occasional studio guitarist. One writer
described him as being “one of the handful of topnotch
country-rock guitarists in Southern California.”
Despite being a touring rock and roll musician in the
late 60’s and early 70’s, Bob earned an undergraduate
degree from the University of California, Riverside
in 1967 and went on to work towards a Ph.D. His
area of study was in biochemistry and physiological
psychology, which Wikipedia® defines as:
a subdivision of behavioral neuroscience that
studies the neural mechanisms of perception
and behavior through direct manipulation of
the brains of nonhuman animal subjects in con-
51 JOURNAL trolled experiments.