Fifteen Years

August 8, 2017

l to r: Randy, Geof and Mike during the 2002 sessions
photo by Taryn Dodd, with artistic background embellishments by Mike Matthews.

2017 marks fifteen years since Randy Palmer and Mike Matthews traveled across the country to gather here in my garage in San Miguel, CA and spend five days recording the instrumental backing tracks and most of the guitar solos for the first “real” album by BEDEMON.

Randy Palmer

Randy in 2002
photo by Geof O’Keefe

Three months after completing that part of the process, Randy died on August 8th, 2002 from injuries suffered a week earlier in a car crash, an innocent victim of a car full of teenagers running a red light and broadsiding the vehicle in which he was a passenger.

It took ten years of emotional recovery, money and fitting it into everyone’s schedule, but with the addition of Craig Junghandel on vocals — who never met or even spoke to Randy — and engineer Shawn Hafley, Symphony of Shadows was finally released in 2012 to pretty much unanimously positive reviews, calling it a, “great lost 70s album.” That was exactly what I was going for when I produced the album and Shawn patiently dealt with my constant fine-tuning to get it just right.

Randy was my best friend for thirty-one years. I think about him every day.

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