In 1928, the devoutly religious Mr. and Mrs. William Brannock journeyed from Ireland to Real de Catorce, Mexico, to seek their fortune in the silver mines of what is now a picturesque ghost town. While there, Mrs. Brannock had an affair with a Mr. Alfredo García, who had come from Spain to try his luck. Amidst scandal and retribution, my mother Wilma was born there in 1931, and due to the exigencies of Mexican law, she was born a Mexican citizen. Mr. and Mrs. Brannock promptly left Mexico, migrating to Arkansas, then to Missouri, and then, during the Dust Bowl disaster, to California, where Mr. Brannock got a wartime job with Bendix and was inducted into the Masonic Order. In time, my mother was naturalized, and is an American citizen. She married Julian García, whose grandfather Guillermo had come to California from Oregon around the turn of the century and who, in 1912, founded a plumbing company in Los Angeles.
I was writing and illustrating little stories (airplanes, racing cars, dinosaurs) before I entered kindergarten. Drawing from my teen-age experiences in European moto-cross, desert racing and enduros, I sold short stories to motorcycle magazines starting in 1967, while still in high school. The next year, I studied Afro-American History under Professor Melvin Newton at Oakland's Merritt Junior College. Mr. Newton, brother of the late Huey, served as Minister of Finance for the Black Panther Party, and he wrote a letter of recommendation for my successful application for a Hearst Scholarship when I entered U.C. Berkeley as an English and Art major. I participated in several sit-ins, and was arrested during the Peoples' Park revolt. (Charges were dropped.) Soon disenchanted by "political solutions" to social problems, by radical “leaders,” and by academe, I hitchhiked around Western Europe, then investigated various cutting edge psychotherapeutic movements before beginning a decade-long stint in the Gurdjieff Work in Hollywood and on the Mendocino Coast, during which time I stripped myself down, then rebuilt myself in rural seclusion, all the while writing songs, screenplays, theatrical works and fictional prose narratives.
I re-entered mainstream America in 1981, and immediately earned productions of my stage pieces in the San Francisco area, where I also taught at and helped to administer a Montessori School, and had jobs such as arts and entertainment columnist, theater and film critic, catalogue model, and singing cookie for Mrs. Fields, bringing joy to corporate mausoleums and the birthday celebrants trapped within. Accepting an invitation to write for a TV series, I relocated to Venice in 1983, and mounted my musical, CAUGHT IN THE MYSTERY, that winter. My hometown, Los Angeles, still repulsed me. In 1984 I moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico, where I was recruited by and entered St. Johns Graduate Institute, majoring in Philosophy and, between 1985 and 1987, served as Playwright-in-Residence for the state of New Mexico, traveling to various locales, including the Cochiti Indian Pueblo, teaching theater to demographically diverse groups of children and adolescents. Then it was off to Boston, where I worked at Harvard Law School (and continued a brief relationship with the Krishnamurti Foundation) before returning to Southern California to write screenplays.
Mexico beckoned. In February 1988 I moved to the Cuernavaca area, where I lived for 28 months, composing and playing my music in Las Tapas night club, writing screenplays, and investigating all strata of Mexican culture. (During this sojourn, a Boston-based songwriting partner and I garnered a Nashville publishing contract.) While researching three Mexican-based film scripts, I apprenticed to a bruja, or sorceress, who one day correctly predicted when I would meet my present wife, Alma Sandra Castro, with whom I returned to America in 1990, where she soon obtained an executive position with an international publisher based in Monterey, California, where we own a new home overlooking Monterey Bay. Since arriving in Monterey, I have written investigative journalism, more stage plays, more songs (now over 600, alone and with collaborators), and several commissioned and speculative screenplays. In 1997, our daughter Victoria was born.