This site is a result of my life long love for the sea and those who sail upon it. I was raised in a
small fishing village on the Washington coast and spent my childhood years working in the
oyster and fishing business. After high school I joined the Navy and put in for sea duty so I
could experience some of the places I had listened to on the short wave radio as a child. My
tour of duty aboard the aircraft carrier USS Midway and at NAS Cubi Point, PI took me to the
Orient I had heard so much about and I wasn't disappointed. I have always been drawn to
harbors and anything to do with the sea. I am nearing retirement as a corrections officer and
since getting my computer I have been in contact with many old "shipmates". I hope this site
will encourage anyone who has a love of the sea to "cruise" through the site and sign my guest
book and if they feel like it, contact me with any "sea stories" they might have.
Joe Brignone
I taught myself how to play guitar back in the "forties" by using the chord diagrams in old
country song books. By the time I joined the Navy I could play a lot of rhythm guitar but not
much lead. After I got out of the Navy and thanks to many practice sessions with records
by the Ventures and Chet Atkins I began playing "lead" guitar in the local taverns on
weekends while working various day jobs. About 1974 I formed my own band and went on
the road playing music full time until 1990 when I became a corrections officer. The original
band broke up after about 6 months so the female singer and I did a duo for about 8 years
and then I performed as a single for the last 8 years I was in the business. The music
environment was pretty good in the "70s" and early "80s" and I performed in places like
"The Eldorado" in Reno, "Red Lions" all over the Northwest and many resorts on the Oregon
and Washington coast. While I was playing music at night I was doing nature and wildlife
photography for magazines and gift shops during the day. As the drinking laws changed and
many of the clubs were quitting live music I left the business for something with retirement
and benefits. So began my career as a corrections officer and one night while on duty I
wrote the song "When Desert Storm Is Over" about how the servicemen and women should
be welcomed home after the war. The song was played by AFRTS all over the world. I didn't
write it to make money so it was never released except to radio stations. The many letters
I received from veterans I will always cherish, especially the one from Gen. Norman
Schwarzkopf. I have a small recording studio, "The Sound Image", where I play, sing and
write songs in my spare time. It's nice to be off the road and out of the smoke filled bars
where I spent so many years.
My photography has become a big part of my life both professionally and personally. I don't
have as much time to go out and "shoot" while I am working at the jail but after I retire I will
be getting back into it. I had my photos on the cover of several magazines and former
President Ronald Reagan has one of my "shots" of Mt. Saint Helen's erupting. Being out in
nature and capturing its beauty on film is a very gratifying experience. I try to capture
nature just as it is without using filters etc. I found it doesn't take a lot of fancy equipment
to take good photos, just a lot of patience and understanding of the subject. The "feeling" I
have while photographing seems to determine whether I take a photograph or a snapshot.
I used to teach photo seminars and plan to do some of that when I retire from the Sheriff's
Dept. I am building a photography web site but until it is finished the URL shown below will
take you to a temporary site I have some of my photos on. Please enjoy.
P31
MidwayJoe biography
October 1996 In my recording studio, "The Sound Image".
August 1983 performing at the "Colonial Inn" in Helena Montana
July 1976 photographing in Eastern Washington.
"MIDWAY JOE"
August 16, 1958
Aboard USS Midway CVA-41
NAS Alameda, CA
Pierce Co. Sheriff's Dept.
Tacoma, WA
October 1999
"CORRECTIONS OFFICER
ALL ABOUT MIDWAY JOE
Listen to the hard hitting song
of the street, written by Joe,
"Who Is To Blame"