Robby Pagliari was born in Hollywood, CA. His father was a restaurateur, and his mother, an opera singer. At an early age he developed an interest in music, performing his first piano recital at the age of five. No longer interested in the piano, he picked up the guitar at the age of nine. His interest turned to the bass after hearing Jack Bruce on Cream’s Wheels of Fire. Having already been familiar with Cream, it was the live versions of “Crossroads” and “Spoonful” that inspired him to become a bass player/vocalist. He says, “I had a revelation and started teaching myself to play the bass.”
By the age of fifteen, he started singing and playing in bands that covered music from Cream to Motown. While at a local music store, he played a fretless bass and found his true calling. Switching to fretless bass seemed a natural progression for Robby, who then started listening to Jazz and Fusion, especially Weather Report, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Return to Forever, etc. Robby soon met Chris Poland. Out of a mutual love for Jazz/Fusion, the New Yorkers were formed featuring Chris Poland on guitar, Stu Samuelson on guitar, and Gar Samuelson on drums with various horn players filling out the lineup. The band played extensively throughout the greater L.A. and Southern California area gaining a huge underground following which lasted nearly four years.
When Chris and Gar were asked by former Metallica guitarist Dave Mustaine to form Megadeth, Robby played in various L.A. based bands until severely injuring his left hand and being told that he probably would lose the use of his hand if he refused surgery. Well, refuse surgery he did. After months of having to re-learn to play the bass, he was asked to replace the bassist in Divine Rite. During his four-year period in Divine Rite, the band recorded two CD’s: DV Live, and DV II. Upon changing vocalists, Divine Rite morphed into Nomad Railway, a band which was earthier and more blues based, and which also featured T. Gunn as its singer. One CD was recorded with this lineup.
In the few years that followed, Robby recorded several records with various artists: August Kurley with Bob Robles, Yesudas, Donny Sarian featuring Steve Lukather on guitar produced by Mark Andes, Chris Poland’s Chasing the Sun, Big Franklin featuring Frank Gambale on guitar. Reuniting with long-time friend Chris Poland, OHM was formed in 1997 and continues to this day. The new release of OHM, Circus of Sound, is now available on Tone Center Records, and the future looks very bright indeed.