Anita Brown


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The Leading Edge: Tony Kadleck, Unedited (Sept. 2010 Issue)

Who were your top three earliest influences as a lead player before you turned thirty?

Tony Kadleck

            Bobby Shew was the first lead player I heard who could also play great jazz. He used that sensibility in his lead phrasing.

            I studied with Lew Soloff and always admired his fearlessness, which is something needed to play lead. He could do a lot of different things, and when you’re growing up hearing him on all those records, wow! Also guys like Marvin Stamm, Randy Brecker and Alan Rubin, and Jon Faddis…it seemed like those guys were on every record in the ‘70’s and ‘80’s.

                        Of the guys I worked with, John Frosk had the sound, in my opinion: “old school,” a wide sound, with tons of overtones.  He played lead with a lot of people.  He played with The Tonight Show. They invited all those guys to go to LA when the show moved out there but Johnny was so busy he stayed here.  He was on Pizzarelli’s first record actually, ’89 or ‘90.  It’s called All Of Me.  Do yourself a favor and listen to The More I See You.  And that was when he was in his early 60’s.  Real funny guy and a super sound.  I had never heard a sound like that before. I couldn’t believe it. It was vibrant and WIDE! Like Lawrence Feldman is always telling me, “Oh man I like how you play.  Your sound has sides to it,”  which is good because I like that;  the width of the sound.  I like bells that are a little larger because I like to feel the bell vibrate.  I swear, Johnny, even if he was three guys away from you, you could feel his bell vibrate.  It was a wide, fat, enormous sound.  And he didn’t play above a high G often.  He wasn’t a screamer playing double C’s, but vibrant.  Ridiculous.  He played Chicago before Glenn Drewes.  That was his last show, but I played Will Rogers’ Follies with him around 1990-92.

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