Destiny has the helm of the Borderline Express. Bill Peters was born in east coast, Atlantic City, New Jersey and raised in the backwards 'river-billy' hamlet of Coal Run, Ohio. Elizabeth began her life in Berkeley, California and most of her childhood was spent in the isolated campos and jungles of Paraguay. Elizabeth studied classical and folk music as her mother taught her violin. Bill grew up with hillbilly music all around him and just picked up licks as he went. While Bill served two tours in Vietnam, Elizabeth was a San Francisco love child. Fate joined them forever more than 25 years ago in Colorado near the continental divide. Their love of music and a common set of fantasies set them on their life journey together and music became their vehicle. Bill had been building folk instruments and teaching workshops for Hughes Dulcimer Company. Their first major adventure was touring Europe as 'buskers', wandering minstrels. After they returned to the USA they began to play in small bars in the Colorado mountains and at coffeehouses and clubs in Denver. Bill says, 'I always joked that my songs came from the 'borderline' of sanity and I had to live there to write. This led to the character, Borderline Bill. We also skirted the edge of many genres. So in 1979, when a Denver agent asked for a band name. 'Borderline Express' popped right up.' Over the years many musicians have been part of the Borderline Express. They all eventually moved on to something more fattening. 'Music can be a tough living!' Bill and Elizabeth, themselves, put the music on the back burner for a couple decades while they navigated other challenges in life (like raising five children). They worked in the oil-patch, hauled swinging meat cross country in 18 wheelers and ran a catering service. Bill even dived into the corporate world for a while as a consultant for a manufacturing company and for an ocean research firm. He calls this his 'acting period.' However, the beckon of the muses was becoming more insistent and small infrequent audiences were asking for more and getting larger. So, with all the children mostly grown, they returned their attention to the muses. A few years later they met Dobro Master, Don Ling, at a bluegrass jam in Chriesman, Texas. A deep friendship and musical rapport developed among these musicians as they sought more opportunities to play together. 'We are a sorta mutual admiration society' Don Ling was born in Taylor, Texas and lived in nearby Thorndale until his father returned from World War II and moved his family to Bryan in Brazos County, Texas. Don remained a resident of Bryan until 1994 when he moved just a little north to rural Robertson County. Don's love affair with the'Dobro' began when, at the tender age of five, he listened to 'Brother Oswald' (Pete Kirby) playing on the Grand Old Opry with Roy Acuff and the Smokey Mountain Boys. But it was to be a while before his dream of owning and playing a Dobro would come true. 'I looked for one for so long that I forgot I was looking!' Don studied piano till he was in the fourth grade. He spent the next years with the clarinet. Then, in the ninth grade, he switched to alto saxophone. Which he played in the marching bands through high school and the Allen Military Academy Junior College. He also dabbled with the organ, the six and twelve string guitar, the banjo, the mandolin, and the marimba. He even made an attempt at the fiddle and electric bass. Don, finally began to pursue his real dream when he obtained a 1977 Regal Dobro, a 'Tri-Cone' model that had been 'bluegrassed' with a 12' spun aluminum resonator. This was traded for a custom Mahogany guitar made by Floyd Jasper. Then after studying under Sally Van Meter at the Bluegrass Camp at South Plains College in Leveland, Texas, Don eventually bought and restored the 1930 Dobro that he plays today. Don has played with several bands and appeared on Radio and TV, both locally and in Nashville, and had produced 3 CD's. He has also hosted the 'Random Routes' program on KEOS 89.1 Radio in Bryan. The three musicians revived the dormant band, 'Borderline Express'. They were soon delivering both well loved standards and original songs for the delight of local audiences. In 2004 they felt it was time to begin recording their favorite songs. In September, 2005, The Borderline Express released their first music album on a CD of fifteen songs called 'Borderline Express'. The group is very happy with the results and have already begun to work on their next album. 'We don't seem to have a 'type' of an audience.' Elizabeth reflects, 'We attract some very mature persons, and it astounded our teen-age children that their friends actually thought we were 'cool' or whatever is the equivalent. We have had a really good time in some very rough joints. We have also performed in a castle, for the Crown Court in Chester, England. We are at home almost anywhere, but we prefer smoke-free environments and so we look for opportunities to play that kind of venue.' No matter where Borderline Express takes the stage, you will feel that you are on the front porch of their SourBranch Ranch. They have an easy style and they approach each song as if it were a one act play. 'We try to become a part of the song and project that to the audience. We want the characters to come alive. We want the listener to laugh and cry and experience irony. We also want them to feel like dancing.' 'Total immersion is what I need to write,' says Bill, 'Myriads of life experiences have given me material to work with for the rest of my days. Still, many events got too close to write about while life was actually happening. Maturity and distance have given me the opportunity to resolve experience into poetry and music. Performing regularly and recording has reopened brain channels I forgot existed. I am writing more and better now than ever before. It is like the songs are already there, I just have to get them down on paper and learn them.'
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