Adam Falcon


Since the beginning of his professional career more than 30 years ago, Adam Falcon has been one of New York City’s most sought-after studio and touring musicians, forming lasting musical relationships with some of the world’s finest musical artists … Jonathan Butler, Phyllis Hyman, Will Downing, Whitney Houston, Sophie B. Hawkins, Robert Palmer, Arif Mardin, and Nona Hendryx. While attending junior college, Adam went down to a Greenwich Village club to see George Benson (one of his childhood guitar heroes) play. Between sets, encouraged by his girlfriend, Adam sat down at the bar next to George, and asked if the guitarist would give him lessons. At first George was reluctant, but Adam persisted, and George, who it turned out also lived in the Bronx, agreed. Not only did Adam find a teacher, but he also became life-long friends with George and his family. Professionally, Adam frequently collaborated with his mentor, writing and playing on two of George Bensons’s Grammy-Nominated recordings — “In Search of a Dream,” on Benson’s In Your Eyes album, and “True Blue” on That’s Right.

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Today, after years known as a composer and guitarist in Broadway Orchestras, on the road playing for singers such as Roberta Flack, television performances with Peter Gabriel, and opening sold-out stadium tours with the Bee Gees and Eric Clapton, Adam came to realize, (as his friends, fellow musicians, and teachers had ALWAYS insisted) that he should step forward as a singer, and be recognized for his own powerful voice. That time finally came, and the results clearly indicate that all those who had encouraged Adam had been right all along. Whether onstage in Manhattan Clubs, Jazz & Blues Festivals around the world, or on three solo records, (i, too, am COLORED, in black & white, Piece of Mine [EP], and most recently, Bohemian 959), Adam’s soulful voice, accompanied by his always recognizable virtuoso guitar, attracts the attention and praise of audiences, musicians, and journalists wherever he sings.
Of all the accolades Adam receives, most simple and accurate might be one fan (writing to Adam’s website about his newest album Bohemian 959) who described Adam’s musical presence as an exhibition of “PURE SOUL!”

Named after his childhood home, where the basement served as his first rehearsal space and most memorable stage, 959 represents the evolution and maturity of Adam’s musical soul … a talented soul, influenced by the explosive ’60s, creatively shaped in the ’70s, professionally recognized throughout the ’80s, found its voice in the ’90s, and has grown more personal and powerful ever since.

Adam Falcon is courageous. So many people spend their whole lives trying to “get there” and “make it”. Adam Falcon not only mastered that, he also gave it all away. Born and raised in the Bronx, with a mother from Harlem and a father from New Orleans, Adam knew nothing else but playing music and the city of New York.

When New York was still gritty and thriving with a pulse, Adam was discovering music as any rambunctious 15 year old would. Sneaking into The Fillmore East to watch Sly and The Family Stone and tuning into WNEW- FM to hear innovative DJs like Rosko, Scott Muni, Pete Fornatelle and “The Nightbird” herself Allison Steele, taking risks as they often once did. “FM radio was very much the underground radio back then” Adam says over coffee at the Film Center Café. “To this day those risks still inspire my music”.

From his days of watching the Everly Brothers, B.B. King and Led Zeppelin in Central Park, Falcon knew that this city was coursing through his veins. It became his soul; his passion and he wanted to translate that into his playing. He always new he could sing, but guitar became his gift and the news of his talent spread like wildfire throughout the city. At 16 he had his first taste of being in a recording studio recording tracks with his band. And, that band had a deal on the table with Atlantic Records. Adam went on to be one of New York City’s most sought after session and touring guitarists. He wound up working with Phyllis Hyman, Will Downing, Jonathan Butler, Sophie B. Hawkins, Roberta Flack, George Benson, Arif Mardin, and Robert Palmer to name a few.

While working as a Broadway pit musician, it was by chance that Adam met Rick James. From that meeting, the Grammy award winning James invited Falcon to a recording session at Atlantic Studios. There, James was working on a duet with Chaka Khan, which was being produced by the legendary Arif Mardin. Mardin and Falcon both shared an acquaintance with George Benson. On an album that Mardin was set to produce, Falcon was asked to contribute a song for George Benson to record. Not only did Faclon write the composition, he arranged and played on that track as well. That song is “In Search Of A Dream” from the George Benson Grammy nominated album “In Your Eyes”. Soon after writing this hit for the singer/guitar virtuous Benson, famed record producer Tommy Lipuma asked Falcon to repeat his magic for Benson a second time. Out of Prince’s Paisley Park Studio came Falcon’s sophomore hit for Benson “True Blue”, from the album “That’s Right.”

For Falcon, one night it all changed. He was on a plane returning from Europe, after having played with Jonathan Butler for Eric Clapton’s 25thAnniversary. Back stage at the concert was littered with glamour. There was Elizabeth Taylor, George Harrison, Steve Windwood and even Princess Diana. “It was definitely a scene. Something at this point I had gotten used to. The parties, the people, the 5 star hotels. It became part of what I was doing out there,” Falcon remembers. “At one point Liz Taylor was passing around her enormous diamond ring and we were all trying it on….it was a trip”. On that flight one could say Falcon was having an epiphanie. The artist in him was bubbling to the surface. As much as he tried to ignore it, that night while flying through the clouds, he knew he couldn’t continue any longer as a side-man. He had to follow his own art, once and for all. Newly married and newly mortgaged, he knew this decision was not only risky, but down right mad. But just like that, the decision was made. After completing a final tour with Jonathan Butler, Adam walked away, from the glamour, the money, and the travel. Most importantly he walked away from other people’s artistic vision and proceeded to find his own.

Moving away from that life and into another not only cost him the limelight it also cost him his marriage. During this lonely time, with bills piling up, and after almost losing his house, Adam knew this was still the right choice. Dreaming his whole life of playing on the stages he’s played on, ultimately left him disillusioned and lost. From those back room stages such as Gonzales y Gonzales, Adam was starting over, while this time speaking his truth.

Like any artist starting out on their path, it took Adam Falcon ten years to really find his voice and his art. “It didn’t matter that I had “made it” as a guitar player and did all these things. I still had to start from square one as an artist, just like everyone else.”

Now with this highly anticipated release, Bohemian 959, Adam has found his true artistic voice. The record took 7 long years to make, but it was worth every painstaking moment. The album captures the true pulse of New York City, back from a day that inspired Adam to pick up an instrument in the first place. “The type of sound that I was going for was a live sound with an old school feel. Like what you hear in the streets of NY. Each song has it’s own message and story. If you thread the entire record together you’d find a positive note. I’d like people to come away with nothing more than that, without trying to get to heavy or esoteric.”

The choice that Adam Falcon made to walk away from the fame and money is one he still chooses. “Just the other day a very famous artist called and asked me to join her band and tour with her all over the world. I sat there for about 3 seconds before I said no. I just knew it would take me away from what I have been working for. Did I have any regrets? The answer is simple. No.”

After years of being in a supporting role, Adam Falcon now takes the lead. Adam Falcon currently lives with his lovely wife and two young children…where else, but New York City.