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Tony Adamo | What is Hip

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Jazz: Jazz-Funk Jazz: Soul-Jazz Moods: Solo Male Artist
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What is Hip

by Tony Adamo

'Doc' Kupka gets hip to Tony Adamo's "What is Hip" "I love Tony's version of "What Is Hip?". He evokes the beatnik-bongo days of my youth and gives a whole new slant to a hard-charging funk tune. Stephen "Doc" Kupka Co-founder of Tower of Power
Genre: Jazz: Jazz-Funk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Cold Duck Time(Get your Groove on line)
4:00 $0.99
2. Rhythm Of Your Love
4:14 $0.99
3. Make Me A Memory
5:12 $0.99
4. What is Hip?
4:48 $0.99
5. Ecstasy
4:08 $0.99
6. Eleanor Rigby
4:37 $0.99
7. Rio De Janerio Blue
4:17 $0.99
8. The Way You Do The Things You Do
3:43 $0.99
9. Love Don't Get
3:53 $0.99
10. Calling
4:17 $0.99
11. Nine Miles Of Blue
3:52 $0.99
12. Mystery
3:54 $0.99
13. This Time It's Real
3:47 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Tony Adamo has signed a record deal with Random Act Records (RAR). Some of the outstanding artists Adamo will be joining are: Mike Clark, of Herbie Hancock and the Headhunters, Michael Wolff, former band leader for the Arsenio Hall show, Larry Coryell named by Musician Magazine as "one of the 100 greatest guitarists alive today, " Kenny Drew, Jr., as Jazziz Magazine says has a "brilliant distinctive style, " Carmen Intorre, Jr., Downbeat Magazine rates his new Cd at 31/2stars.

A recent review of one of Adamo's new songs from his upcoming release, MILES OF BLU on RAR states: "Adamo reaches into the pre-rap turf of Gil Scott-Heron here with this seductive too-short flash memoir about how he discovered jazz and its legendary envelope pushers – Dizzy Gillespie, Charles Mingus, Thelonious Monk, John Coltrane, and Miles Davis. There's energy and honor and wonder in Adamo's words, especially in the fluid alliterative syncopated way the words reflect the inspiration that jazz gave him as an artist, as a human being."
Devon Jackson, Village Voice Rolling Stone and Details

Legendary drummer, Mike Clark is the producer on Tony Adamo's hi-voltage vocals and Nu-Jazz Funk/Hipspokenword dialogue on MILES OF BLU Cd. So, can you dig it? Funk, bop, rock 'til ya drop! Random Act Record artists are at

"Tony Adamo's upbeat take on the Beatles' classic that's a cross between a spoken word recitation and a Tom Jones hipshaker"

This very fresh take on the Beatles' symphonically infused downer reemerges here in Adamo's arrangement as decidedly less depressive but certainly no less enticing. The melancholy of the original comes through less so in Adamo's phrasings but is threaded throughout by the plaintiveness of the organ. The sadness of McCartney's voice has been leeched out here but miraculously not so much prettified by Adamo as hepped up by his jazz inflections and flavorings. The tempo's faster and the crispness of the drums and the guitar provide a snappy counterpoint to the organ. This is not a lonely song at all but a sort of rousing pronouncement about all the lonely people

Devon Jackson
Magazine Editor - Freelance Music Journalist



to write a review

New Jazz Jeff

USNewJazz.com Review
A beat poet for the new generation? Or a jazz-funk crooner? Take your pick. I think that either one of these characterizations could easily describe Tony Adamo. Tony comes to USNewJazz.com with two tracks from his recently released CD – “What is Hip”

“What is Hip?”
When I first heard this cover of the Tower of Power song from 1973, it brought back memories of other spoken word songs. However, Tony’s offering is not as “gimmicky” as these other songs. There is a strong sense of cool sophistication in the way he delivers the lyrics. It doesn’t hurt that he has a set of smooth pipes. It also doesn’t hurt that a great group of musicians that add so much to this song backs him. A special “thumbs up” to Sandy Griffith, whose background vocals give this song a real (for lack of a better reference) “Motown Feel”.

“Cold Duck Time”
Tony does a laid-back and funky version of this Eddie Harris and Les McCann song from their 1969 album - “Swiss Movement”. On this track, Tony shows (once again) his smooth vocals. Melecio Magdalugo on sax is a great foil for Tony’s vocals. Neil Larsen on organ brings an undercurrent of soul to the party. This is without a doubt a fine tribute to one of jazz’s classic tracks.

Jeff’s Favorite: “What is Hip?”

Jeff’s Final Thought: For me, Tony’s renditions conjure up visions of the classic “cocktail party”. Others have called his music a combination of the big band and sound with a seasoned Vegas lounge singer. I agree with those comparisons. However, it is much more than that for me. Taking a quick tour of this CD, you will find a number of good versions of classic songs. Some of the standouts include “Make a Memory”, “Calling” and an interesting version of the Beatles “Eleanor Rigby”. The combination of smooth vocals, spoken word and, solid arrangements make this album complete.

I am really having a hard time thinking of contemporary comparisons for Tony. I think that he is without a true equal. Others have said that you could compare him to Tom Jones or Lou Rawls. I’ll throw Dean Martin into that mix. Still, there really is no comparison.

Jeff Niziol
February - 2011

Glenn"Doc" Holloway

Tony Adamo is Hip....
In Walked Bud. Miles and Charlie Parker get on the bandstand. Max makes wax and then Lester leaps in. Tony Adamo takes the mike explains it all to you. With a Tower of power vibe and a cool Kerouac sensibility.
Listen to this cat. We need him. Is this Heaven or Camarillo? Better ask Tony. he is on a hip trip and I"m going too.

Stephen 'Doc' Kupka, Tower of Power co-founder www.strokeland.co

Tony Adamo What is Hip?
"I love Tony's version of "What Is Hip?". He evokes the beatnik-bongo days of my youth and gives a whole new slant to a hard-charging funk tune. Congrats to Tony Adamo !"

Sandy Shore

SmoothJazz.com Review
It’s midnight… there’s still possibility in the air and energy in your bones… you grab your iPod to search for the right soundtrack… Tony Adamo's WHAT IS HIP? will be the one you want for such a soulful night. A richly sophisticated, musky collection of 13 intoxicating tracks. The former radio announcer turned Hollywood agent turned singer/songwriter has gathered together his original seductive tunes with some of his favorites including The Beatles “Eleanor Rigby,” Randy Crawford’s classic “Rio de Janeiro Blue” and of course the album’s namesake, Tower of Power’s “What Is Hip?” It’s a raw, sexy and funky blast alluding to the past with a scintillating jazz sensibility that heats up the vibe intensely… the word ‘smoldering’ comes to mind. Organic ingredients include A-listers Jerry Stucker, Steve Gadd, Neil Larsen, Freddie Washington and TOP’s Doc Kupka. Jazz lovers and unique vocal aficionados who appreciate edgy and interesting voices like Lou Reed and Tom Waits’ will dig what Tony’s laying down here… hipness is what it is!

Brent Black/Bop-N-Jazz

Tony Adamo and What Is Hip? is old school turned new cool! Funky is as funky doe
Tony Adamo and What Is Hip? is old school turned new cool! Funky is as funky does!

Brent Black / www.bop-n-jazz.com

What is hip? Indeed...

The standard rule of thumb would be that what is hip is best defined by the style of the time. After being the first critic to shed a much needed and well deserved light on his latest release Miles of Blu, Tony Adamo makes hippness a zen like state of mind. To paraphrase the great musical philosopher Frank Zappa, "You are what you is."

What is Hip? could easily be considered a perfect book end to Miles of Blu. This 2011 release is a most righteous hybrid of rock, soul, funk with improvisational vocal style that is a smoldering groove. Is it new? No...It isn't supposed to be. What Is Hip? revitalizes the old school sound of say Muscle Shoals meets Tower of Power with a modern twist and straight ahead direction that makes the end result a unique mirror image of one the hippest people I personally know on the planet being Adamo. One of my greatest influence as a critic, Robert Hilburn from the Los Angeles Times once said you never become friends with an artist unless you are working on some sort of project together just in case you have to be the bearer of bad news one day. Those that get me know that my philosophy has always been you work your side of the street and I'll work mine. Tony Adamo is cut from a similar cloth, he is just presenting his contribution his way and with his own style and it doesn't get any more real than that.

Notable contributions here include, "Cold Duck Time" along with "What Is Hip?" and "Nine Miles Of Blue." Tony Adamo is never going to win male vocalist of the year and that may be one of the many reasons this release pops so well straight out of the gate. Perhaps guest artists such as Steve Gadd and members of the Tower of Power horn section along with long time friend in drummer/producer Mike Clark help give you that winning edge but talent always wins out. What is Hip? is an entertaining and seriously soulful romp through some righteous tunes with a set of A list musicians banging out a groove you can use. Tony Adamo is indeed hip!

Tracks: Cold Duck Time; Rhythm Of Your Love; Make Me A Memory; What Is Hip?; Ecstasy; Eleanor Rigby; Rio De Janeiro Blue; The Way You Do The Things You Do; Love Don't Get; Calling; Nine Miles Of Blue; Mystery; This Time It's Real.

Personnel: Tony Adamo: Vocal/Hip Spoken Word; Steve Gadd: Drums; Reggie McBride: Bass; Neil Larsen: Organ; Jerry Stucker: Guitar, Midi Programming; Robert Quintana: Percussion; Melecio Magdaluyo: Sax; Sandy Griffith: Background Vocals; James Gadsen: Drums; Rodney Franklin: Piano; Kenneth Nash: Percussion; Skip Mesquite: Sax; Mic Gillette: Trombone; Henry Hung: Trumpet/ Trombone; Mike Clark: Drums; Richie Goods: Bass; Bill Summers: Percussion; Stephen Doc Kupka: Bari Sax; Eddie Henderson: Trumpet; Blackbyrd McKnight: Guitar; John Costalupes: Bass.

Posted by brent black at 6:03 AM
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