John Lee Sanders and the William Ross Orchestra -
DOC GOES HOLLYWOOD
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Photo by Mark Leialoha
"Adamo is like Lou Rawls fronting Tower of Power..."-- "Stuart Hamilton, Amazon.co.uk
"Think Lou Reed, but funkified..."-- "Sandy Shore, Smoothjazz.com
Tony Adamo is making some waves. The music press has been taking notice of this talented singer/songwriter's latest release, STRAIGHT UP DEAL. With all the confidence and poise of a seasoned entertainer and a true original, Adamo tackles jazz standards, Soul, and R&B with equal aplomb and adds his own inimitable style.
For Adamo's current release, STRAIGHT UP DEAL, producer Jerry Stucker brought in the hippest of the hip session players. Among them were Mic Gillette and Skip Mesquite of Tower of Power fame. Tony had befriended them both at a recording session with Dave Hartel, who was the organist for Lydia Pense and Cold Blood at the time. Several years later, when it came time to lay down the horn tracks for the session, Mic and Skip were called in for the session.
Mic then brought in Stephen 'Doc' Kupka, who further funkified the horn section on tunes "No Strings" and "Groove Therapy". The song "Groove Therapy" was written to honor Doc Kupka, and Tony found it beyond cool to have the Funky Doctor himself playing on the track.
Other notables Stucker brought in for the recording of STRAIGHT UP DEAL included Mike Clark (Headhunters), Paul Jackson (Headhunters), Ernie Watts, Eddie Henderson, Neil Larson, James Gadson, Freddie Washington, Rodney Franklin, Paul van Wageningen, Shota Osabe, Gary Brown, Melecio Magdaluyo, and Sandy Griffith.
Production on STRAIGHT UP DEAL is nothing short of world-class and none other than 19-time Grammy winning recording engineer and record producer Al Schmitt mixed several of the songs. Al Schmitt also mixed Doc Kupka's beautiful release, DOC GOES HOLLYWOOD. Like DOC GOES HOLLYWOOD, STRAIGHT UP DEAL was mastered by Capitol Mastering's Ron McMaster and the results are outstanding.
Strokeland Jazz welcomes Tony Adamo. Give STRAIGHT UP DEAL a listen for yourself and enjoy.
"Pop songs with R&B horns make Tony Adamo’s STRAIGHT UP DEAL sizzle with excitement. He sings with the bold character of a man who knows how to entertain, recalling pop singers Tom Jones, David Clayton-Thomas and Brook Benton as well as jazz singers Al Jarreau and Mark Murphy. His program, however, goes well beyond the pop and R&B arena into Jazz interpretations of standards such as 'Milestones', 'Mercy, Mercy, Mercy', 'Stolen Moments', '“In the WineLight', and 'Speak Low'."
"The band, which includes horns with guitars, bass, keyboards and drums, gives Adamo a solid foundation from which he wails soulfully. Several guests help to make the session come alive: trumpeter Eddie Henderson, tenor saxophonist Ernie Watts, guitarist Jerry Stucker, baritone saxophonist Doc Kupka, and alto saxophonist Melecio Magdaluyo."
"Adamo swings up front on 'Hey Lou' with persuasive jazz-talk, settles down for 'Autumn Leaves' with a straightforward ballad approach, curls up with ' Lolita' in a romantic way, croons 'Speak Low' with a delightful spin, cries 'Mercy, Mercy, Mercy' with funk dreams on his mind, and creates a lovely program rich in the jazz tradition and fun to be with."
-- Jim Santella, L.A Jazz Scene – December, 2008