Space Shuttle Music Man

July 8, 2011 Updated Jul 8, 2011 at 8:35 PM EDT

By WKBW Admin

July 8, 2011 Updated Jul 8, 2011 at 8:35 PM EDT

(Middleport, N.Y) Barry DiGregorio watched the final launch of a Space Shuttle from his home in Middleport, NY.

But even though he was one thousand miles away from the Kennedy Space Center, DiGregorio feels very close to the Shuttle program - through his music.

In 1995, NASA's first female Shuttle pilot, Lt. Col. Eileen Collins, carried an audio cassette containing music produced by Barry which was titled "Guitar Sonata for Zero G Listeners."

It was a wonderful moment for a man who admits that he can neither write music nor read it.

The 57-year old says he plays purely by inspiration - while his family jokes that all Barry's musical ideas come from outer space.

Astronaut Collins sent Barry DiGregorio a thank you note and said she would "fly it again."

For the free-lance science writer and musician, having his music played in "high places" was a proud moment.

As a boy he dreamed of being an astronaut after being inspired by astronauts Alan Shepard and Neil Armstrong.

"Having my music played in space in the next best thing," smiles Barry.