Living the dream

For Steve “Bumpy” Cape, it’s all about a dream that came true with a lot of hard work. The dream began on September 30, 1964 in Winterville, Ga.

Growing up in the late ’60s and early ’70s, much of his music exposure came from his parents.

WRSC, a top 40 station in Athens, was Bumpy’s first real introduction to music. He recalls the station constantly playing in the kitchen when he got ready for school as a child. Another major outlet for his music exposure was his dad’s upholstery shop. Starting at age seven, Bumpy would go hang out with his father at work on the weekends and heard his first grooves of Motown coming through the dusty radio speakers powered by WRSC.

“When you’re introduced to good music, besides the crap you have today, you develop a real love for music,” Bumpy said.

In high school, Bumpy’s love of music and vinyl continued to grow as well as his participation within the music scene.

“I was hanging out with, you know, the hippies,” he said. “The back parking lot crowd.”

Led Zeppelin, Lynard Skynyrd, Pink Floyd, Frank Zappa, The Rolling Stones, The Who and of course The Beatles were just a few of the bands they would listen to and discuss. Just like any pack of hippies, music was life and the men behind the songs were seemingly immortal.

After 35 years in the business, Bumpy is living his dream. However at 48, his health is on the decline and he’s in need of a kidney transplant.

With the local music scene behind him and matching funds, Bumpy has successfully raised $6,000 needed to cover the $10,000 co-pay for his transplant. His is currently waiting to get approval from the University of Virginia Medical Center for the operation.

Don’t tell the record guy to stay home and not worry about running the shop. His hard work and drive for the store prevents him from wanting to take the easy road.

“I can live even more comfortably sitting at home all day doing nothing, but I can’t do that,” Bumpy said. “This is in my blood — this is who I am.”

But the optimistic Bumpy doesn’t mind if it’s a quiet day inside “Cosmic Debris.” At the end of the day, Bumpy knows he’s doing what he ultimately loves.

“If I make five bucks, awesome. I’ve got money for gas to make it home,” he said. “If I make a hundred bucks, even better I have money to buy some food, but I don’t need money. They say money is the root of all evil and there’s a lot of truth to that.”