Texas based singer/songwriter Paul D’Adamo has taken something old and made it new again. He has recruited a very experienced lineup of musicians to perform on his debut release Tell Me Something, and has put a jazz/fusion spin on a number of old Phil Collins and Genesis tracks along with a few original compositions. Rich in rock, jazz and blues influences, Tell Me Something is a radio friendly treat for any fan of Collins, Genesis or early 1980′s commercial rock.
Obviously inspired by Phil Collins and Genesis, D’Adamo worked closely with Phil Collins’ collaborator and keyboardist/producer, Brad Cole. They’ve gathered musicians who have recorded with the greats of the ’80s, including Phil Collins, Genesis, Supertramp, Elton John and James Taylor and have produced music that is according to D’Adamo “a synthesis of Pop, Jazz, Fusion and Progressive Rock.” D’Adamo has a great voice – clear, smooth and very accessible – everything a radio-friendly AOR singer should have.
Despite being 60 percent covers, D’Adamo and his band have fully rearranged and restyled all of the covers, providing a fresh interpretation. He has selected lesser known tracks and avoided remaking what most listeners would consider “classics”. The band also performs one track by Filipino musician Jose Mari Chan. His original tracks are well written and lively, spanning genres from commercial rock to R & B.
“Tell Me Something” (a D’Adamo original) is a great R & B track, and would be right at home on a modern jazz station. “Long Long Way To Go” is a great almost dance-able commercial rock version of the Phil Collins masterpiece, showcasing D’Adamo’s vocals at their best – and some killer saxophones. “Miss You,” a heartbreaking soft rock ballad written by D’Adamo, shows off the band’s quieter side. “Doesn’t Anybody Stay Together Anymore” dials up the energy while covering the Phil Collins pop track and fills it with lively sax and percussion.
Amazing acoustic guitars and soft keyboards open the band’s fine remake of the Genesis tune “Entangled.” Steel drums and an upbeat bass line carry D’Adamo’s “Woman Like You,” while moody pianos fill the Collins tear-jerker ballad “Please Don’t Ask.” A powerful bass line pushes the pop Genesis “Like It Or Not” along, while the cover of Jose Mari Chan’s “Constant Change” is a pop ballad for the ages and easily the best track on the album. Genesis’ short acapella “Guide Vocal” wraps the album in fine style.
While Tell Me Something won’t appeal to anyone looking for heavy stuff, it will certainly entertain fans of not only Phil Collins and Genesis, but will cross over and hook modern jazz and soft rock fans as well. This album is obviously a labor of love, and D’Adamo’s passion and enthusiasm are easily visible. His covers are well done, the original tracks are nicely written and performed, the musicianship of the entire ensemble is world class, and it is produced with crispness, warmth and clarity.
Definitely recommended – especially if you are looking for something light and upbeat.
The bonus DVD features a behind-the-scenes documentary “Paul D’Adamo: Something To Tell” directed by filmmaker Erik Klein. It focuses on the recording process of D’Adamo’s solo album, “Tell Me Something.”
The film crew travels through Albany, Cincinnati, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, Nashville and New York City witnessing how the production of the album unfolds.