DRG Mourns David (Left of Heaven) Beccia

Final thoughts from Al (A.J. Huckleberry)

I'd known Dave Beccia for the better part of three decades. Dave fought type 1 Diabetes. Cancer. He stepped back from music for a while. He came back strong. A band of mine opened for his band Left of Heaven. Forever ago. Dude hit a switch to turn on a fan during a solo. He was backlit, hair blowing. Classic. 

We jammed with Dino Dave. We put Dino Dave's Iommi SG through Beccia's Laney stack. We got to be Iommi. We grooved on our love of Iommi. We laughed at that first big chord we hit -- I know we did, because it sounded EXACTLY like Sabbath. It's a part of that love of that kind of guitar music: chasing your heroes.

I'm gonna take a leap here. I'm gonna tell you Dave Beccia was a hero.

I was down and out. Mid-divorce, house nearing foreclosure. Unemployed. I got called in to the unemployment office. One of those check-ins designed to scare the hell out of you and see if they can kick you off the dole. I sat on the waiting room, clutching my job search notes. Thinking maybe I was better off gone. Total humiliation.  I met my caseworker: Freakin' Dave! We chatted about past encounters. He reassured me that he had my back. Helped me set up some options. I left with a sense of hope. 

Dave left that job to set up an agency that placed disabled people in jobs. I watched the Facebook announcements: "100 people placed year to date!"That last bit would be enough, don't you think? Enough to convince anyone that we lost a Good One. A Stand Up Guy.

Let me tell you: From Pink Floyd tribute Gilmour's Breakfast (Dave was in the original lineup) to his seemingly ongoing Left of Heaven, to grunge tribute Tollbooth Willie and his last band Project Alice...Dave had chops and feel and stage presence and you fucking wish you were him onstage. I did. His playing grooved and slinked and rage and if you talked to him you liked him. I remember jamming with him. He could have eaten your lunch, but he'd rather take you out to lunch. His playing, when we jammed, had no EGO. He was a gracious foil. He made you want to play. I still want to play.

Godspeed, David.