The Alter Ego Band of Fort Myers has an interesting history.

Let us travel back in time.......


Unlikely Group Bands Together

White-collar professionals in Alter Ego bonded by music

Excerpt from an article by Forrest Norman/ The News Press
Lifestyles cover story August 17, 2000

Photo from the newpaper. Yeah, I know, it's grainy.

Tracey Coppin, an insurance agent by day, sings during a recent practice with the band Alter Ego. Ted Myerson plays guitar for the band and makes his living as a graphics designer, specializing in website creation. Photo by Stephen Hayford/ The News Press

Alter Ego is more than just a name of a local band. It’s also an explanation of how a group of mostly middle-aged professionals wound up with a regular gig playing R&B in a south Fort Myers bar.

The core members of Alter Ego are, by day, a doctor, an insurance agent, 2 lawyers, and an accountant. That’s right, an accountant.

"I’ve been with a CPA firm in Fort Myers about 20 years," says 43-year-old drummer Todd Caruso of his work at McHale, Caruso, Scullion & Co. "I’m a partner there."

Caruso and his musical cohorts have earned a slot playing at the VIP Club in south Fort Myers.

……A band that contains, two Assistant U.S. Attorneys – bassist Robert Barclift and part-time lead singer Doug Molloy – may seem a bit of an oddity. However, lead singer/insurance agent Tracey Coppin says it makes perfect sense.

"It’s a wonderful diversion, a great outlet for all of us," Coppin says. "I totally forget about my day."

Although their name is a playful nod to the seeming disparity between their nighttime gig and their day jobs, there may not be as much of a conflict between Alter Ego’s music and lifestyle as one would assume. Musically, Alter Ego is more about dancing than youthful rebellion.

"I would say we’re mostly R&B," says Robert Barclift, the bass player/Assistant U.S. Attorney who was the driving force behind Alter Ego’s formation.

"We’re doing Aretha Franklin tunes, Otis Redding, Blues Brothers, James Brown," Barclift says. "It’s dance music, it’s party music."

Barclift, Caruso, Coppin and trumpet player Tony Fransway are the core members of the group, although several other musicians join them regularly.

They found each other through various avenues – Caruso is a friend of Barclift’s, Coppin attends church with Barclift, and Fransway is Barclift’s dermatologist."

"The four of us who are the principals behind the thing are very committed to it and we practice once a week for about two-and-a –half hours," Barclift says.

……Rather than refer to a particular genre or era, Coppin prefers to describe Alter Ego’s musical intent: "We just want to make music that makes people move," Coppin says. "I don’t see us as a band where you go to a club and sit back and take in the music."

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The Alter Ego Band of Fort Myers, Inc.

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