FunkNut
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FunkNut

Rochester, New York, United States | INDIE

Rochester, New York, United States | INDIE
Band R&B Soul

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"FUNKNUT HIT IT! album review"

Grounded on a bedrock of timeless organ-based slow-whiplash grooves, Funknut finds its collective feet on the dance floor on Hit It!. Led by keyboardist/vocalist Tony Gallicchio, the New York quartet is rounded out by Tristan Greene on drums and vocals, Sean McLay on bass and vocals, and Paul McArdle on guitar. The new album, from a group in their third year, is the first with the funktastic four, and shows a keen ability to play it low-key soul style with taut rhythmic angles, and a bass-and-drums engine room which is steady and inventive. Funknut keeps it simple, sure, as this music often requires, but that doesn’t negate its groovy validity.

In the perfect little linear world, the album fluctuates moods and grooves, and starts off with a one-two punch of old school R&B hit singles, offering an edge firmly rooted in the pocket (“Hard to Get” and the languid and loose “Do What You Wanna Do”), a downtempo ride through a darkened street with the right girl in the passenger seat (“Ton of Bricks”), a song which lives up to its cosmic title (“Interstellar Funk Transmission”), but keeps the feet tethered to the dance beat, as does its riff-crunchy follow up (“Emotions”), before sliding down oh so slow and low for a taste of love during the night (“Sugar”) and anytime/anywhere, baby (“Grind It”).

Which makes the spell on the last quartet of numbers that much more engaging and enriching—jazz is pondered and toyed with from a soul music point of view (“Like That”), a rousing bit of straight-up funk is anchored by a killer raw guitar crunch (“Make It Funky”), before the slipstreams of soul and funk cross (“Pay That Rent”), and temporal lines are also joined and twisted together (“Here We Again”), as the band touches down into a patient stroll through a rhythmic jungle, neither venturing too far, nor losing the original beat (“Wind Up”). But no need to nitpick and fuss. In the end, Funknut, a frothy “keep it funky” quartet with an ability to mix it up a bit, with its Tony G organ grooves prominent in the mix, guitar on the periphery, and its tight and solid bass and drums in the fore- and background, got it right here. The future looks…well, funky. Make it so. - Jambands.com


"Whether it’s ‘The Compromise’ or ‘Funknut,’ Tony Gallicchio is a musician on the rise"

Hornell, N.Y. —

Music runs in his veins.

Tony Gallicchio, a 26-year-old Hornell native, who plays keyboard for the four member upstate band “The Compromise” recently got some notoriety opening a concert at the Blue Cross Arena in Rochester that featured Motown legends “The Four Tops” and “The Temptations.”

“It was great,” said Gallicchio. “It was the best gig I ever had.”

Gallicchio, a 2002 Hornell High School graduate who lives on Front Street, has been playing music since he was 10 when he started with the drums. Later, he moved to the keyboard,

“There’s tons of bass players, drummers, but there is less of a draw to the keyboard. So, I thought my best chances for success would be with the keyboard.”

Gallicchio also plays in a local band called Funknut that recently completed its first album.

“That’s my baby. We just had some great album reviews in jambands.com which is a pretty big deal for independent artists and the scene,” he said.

Gallicchio said he has always been inspired by his father, Dominic Gallicchio, the bass player for another local band named Vendetta.

“Music is everything to me,” said Gallicchio. “I don’t know what I’d do without it. I hope that feeling is the same for everybody ... You want to hear that song that makes you realize somebody’s been there, knows what you are going through. When you go through that heart break you want to hear somebody like Al Green, someone who has been there.”

For now Gallicchio, a part-time Wegmans worker, will keep his hands on the keys and keep hope that some day a band he is in is the headline act.

“The goal is to be successful as a musician, not rich and famous, but to provide for a decent living,” he said.
Funknut will perform Aug. 26 at a summer concert series the City of Hornell and The Tribune are sponsoring on Broadway. - The Evening Tribune


"Fresh off a mountain high, Hornell band gets ready to go Underground"

The last time Hornell-based funk/soul project FunkNut played a festival, there were no lines for the Porta Potty, and there was no sweating under a hot sun or traipsing through muddy grounds.

Rock the Resort took place indoors — at the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa in Kerhonkson, near the Catskills — and provided a very different experience for the members of FunkNut.

“It’s this beautiful, maybe 10-story hotel,” says keyboardist/vocalist Tony Gallicchio, 26, “and it’s completely overrun by this festival scene and everything that goes with it. It was weird to have that inside … but the venue was so great and it worked.”

The band, which also includes drummer Tristan Greene, 27; bassist Sean McLay, 32; and guitarist Paul McArdle, 26, was able to rub elbows with acts like Soullive and KRS-One, both of which FunkNut was excited to see perform at Rock the Resort.

What the band — which has a gig at Dub Land Underground Saturday, Oct. 2 — didn’t expect to see was “amazing jazz musician” Skerik making out with a woman in the VIP area.

“(Skerik) and his girlfriend were just mashing faces like 16-year-old kids. So we walk by and they’re making out, and we walk out, like, 10 minutes later and they’re still making out … You would think he’d never made out with anyone before,” says Gallicchio, with a laugh.

What festival attendees witnessed, as with anyone who has seen FunkNut live, was the spunky quartet’s soulful organ-based grooves. And now, thanks to the band’s first release, Hit It!, FunkNut fans don’t have to wait for the act to stop in their city to hear its unique blend of funk and soul.

The album, released in April, features songs FunkNut had been playing live, as well as new tunes Gallicchio wrote specifically for the album around December, when recording began on the band’s own Tinyace Records.

“Recording the new songs, you’re kind of questionable on which way to go because you haven’t tried it already. But the older songs you’ve been doing, you know what works,” Gallicchio says. “So the new ones are fun because you get to really kind of mess around in the studio.”


Not content to stop there, Gallicchio and fellow FunkNut-ers will head into the studio in the next month or so to record new material for their sophomore release.

Songs from the forthcoming project, according to Gallicchio, “still have the funk to it, and always have the soul vibe, but (are looking more like) three-and-a-half minute, pop-conscious songs … We’re focusing on writing catchy songs that people can connect with.” - Metromix


"Forest Jam 2008 is Over. Long Live Forest Jam 2009"

MUSIC: Funknut.

Funknut plays the kind of music that takes you gently by the neck and forces you to dance.

There’s just no choice.

And once you fall into the groove, it’s impossible to get out.

And the audience wasn’t alone falling into this groove.


By Sean Hurley New Hampshire Public Radio - NHPR.org


"Tony Gallicchio - Groove Junction By: Brian Campbell"

Tony Gallicchio
Groove Junction
www.tinyace.com

Tony Gallicchio could not have chosen a more fitting name for his record Groove Junction. It is just that. Every song grooves, swoons and jives through fantastic bass work, soothing, yet soulful vocals and some solid piano play.

Groove Junction is a silky smooth record with talented, slinky bass lines and stealthy guitar work, backed up by lounge-worthy drumming and nice vocals. Gallacchio’s voice is top notch throughout, even though there are some parts where the vocals are too soft or hard to hear, but that is more on the production value and less on him. Gallicchio can wail as well as he can sing, as evident on Wondering, which might be the best track on Groove Junction. It surely is the catchiest. There is one guarantee with this record for sure; it will make you want to move. Whether it be just toe-tapping, head swaying, or maybe even finger snapping, this record will make it happen. You might even want to groove out a nice slow dance to it. The track As We Come of Age has a lot of good parts to it; a soft and subtle guitar solo, strict bass line and some of the record’s better vocals. Half Step is a nice display of all of the members’ musical ability. No vocals, all instruments. It is with this track that you’re able to see just what type of talent these guys possess.

This is the type of music I can see putting your feet up to, swirling a nice glass a brandy, and lighting up a fine cigar. Those are the perfect things to do while listening, either that, or love making.

Silky Smooth like:
- Soulive – Break Out
- Ozomatli - Ozomatli
- Medeski, Martin & Wood – Shack-man
- rochesterathome.com


"Piano Preaching"

Piano preaching: man finds meaning in music


By ROB MONTANA - STAFF WRITER

HORNELL - For Tony Gallicchio going to church is as easy as hammering out a few notes on his piano.

The 22-year-old Hornell musician is able to find peace when writing songs then seeing them evolve into performance pieces through practice.

“It's like my religion, it just gives you this feeling,” Gallicchio said. “Music gives you insight, this feeling of peace and joy you can't achieve in any other way.

“When I go out and play a gig there's a certain point in the night - it doesn't happen every night - but when you're on that things are happening and there's this elevation,” he added. “There's a state of mind you can't reach by doing a drug when you connect with people non-verbally.”

Music also has a connection to a range of emotions, Gallicchio said, that does not compare to anything else.

“Music has been around since the beginning of time, and everybody loves it. It's like therapy,” he said. “On your worst day there's always that album you go to that makes you feel better.

“Sometimes people aren't there for you,” Gallicchio added, “but music is just there, no matter what mood you're in.”

He began playing when he was 10 years old, a time when students get their introduction to school band. Initially Gallicchio had an interest in playing the saxophone, but he eventually settled for the loudest instrument - the drums - playing in the school band until he reached high school.

“When I went to high school they had the marching band that you had to be in, and I didn't want to be in the marching band,” Gallicchio said. “I never stopped playing, I just stopped playing in school.”

He kept busy playing drums with a variety of bands featuring other local musicians, including local favorite Rubber Soul.

About five years ago came an abrupt switch as Gallicchio changed his tune from the beat of the drums to the melody of the piano. A desire to write more songs was the only fuel he needed to teach himself a new instrument.


“Banging a beat on the drums doesn't convey the melody to anybody,” Gallicchio said. “Guitar players are a dime a dozen, but there are only a few local keyboard players.

“I felt my best chance to get to play with as many musicians as possible was to learn the piano,” he added.

His newfound piano passion carried over to Rubber Soul, and he switched to playing keyboard for the band. Bandmates Eric Carlin, Kurt Johnson and Ethan Rainwater helped him during the transformation.

“As much as they are my companions, they were also my teachers,” Gallicchio said. “Some of your best teachers are musicians.”

He took to his new instrument, finding it allowed him to express himself through song and make more impact than drumming out the beats.

“It's a little more power in a sense because you can add so much color and life to a song,” Gallicchio said. “The theory for all music is through the piano, it's an amazing instrument.”

While Rubber Soul has members spread throughout the country right now, Gallicchio has kept busy playing with the Ithaca-based Cosmic Sex Prophets and Hornell's Hill Street All-Stars. The former - which included HHS graduates Laura Hanrahan and Rainwater - lost a member due to college graduation, but Gallicchio expects to play with the others in the future.

The Hill Street All-Stars includes Gallicchio's father, Dominic, Anton Flint and Steve Brown, none strangers to the local music scene. He's also been playing with some musicians from Rochester. His connections aided him when he developed his debut disc.

“The album is a revolving cast of pretty awesome musicians - including Eric Carlin, Kurt Johnson, Laura Hanrahan,” Gallicchio said. “There are about 12 different people on the album, and every track is a different lineup.

“I'm not a Tony Gallicchio band type of person,” he added. “I like playing off people, and I wouldn't want to play by myself when I can have five guys who play well off each other.”

Taking a look at Gallicchio's musical interests it's easy to see why the album has such a blend of styles. From classic rock to jazz, and funk to folk, he tried to incorporate those styles on his CD.

“There's a little bit of everything,” he said. “Not everybody's going to like every song, but I think there's a little gem on there for everybody.”

While commercial success might be nice, Gallicchio's main focus is the music.

“My goal is about writing songs that have meaning and emotions involved,” he said. “You're not going to find this music on MTV or something like that, but it has meaning, real feelings and emotions.”

Gallicchio will officially release his album - Groove Junction - at a CD release party at Maple City Bowl tonight. In addition, the Hill Street All-Stars also will perform from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., including playing several of the songs featured on the album.

- Evening Tribune


"Tony G w/Rebel Jelly 8.19.07"

Yesterday I went to see Bob Weir & Ratdog along with the Allman Brothers Band at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center in Buffalo. (I’ll have more on this show later in the week)

In the parking lot there was an awesome jam band by the name of “Rebel Jelly” playing before the show. These guys are from Rochester, NY and are getting gigs all over the east coast even though they’ve only been together for a short time.

From the bands website they consider themselves to be Funk / Pop / Fusion with improvisation for a unique sound. R. Jelly’s members share a wide range of influences. We feel the one’s most touched upon in this musical context are Stevie Wonder, Bill Frisell, Carter Beauford, The Meters, Thom Yorke and Micheal Jackson - other influences include sleep deprivation, humor, free food and the inexplicable passion.

To find out when these guys are playing near you check their official website at http://www.rebeljelly.com/live/

- BandsthatJam.net


Discography

Don't Say Goodnight (2011)
HIT IT! (2010)
Every Little Thing (2008)
Groove Junction (2006)

Radio
Sirius XM
105.3 in Hornell NY
90.7 in Alfred NY
98.9 the buzz Rochester NY
102.7 WEQX-FM Jam N Toast Manchester VT

Photos

Bio

"It's fresh to death, grooves for days, and sets the crowds to smiling." -Upstate Live

The Funktastic Four - Randy Ray - Jambands.com

"Skillful and masterful" - Rochester City Newspaper

Just enough funk to make your pastor groove, but with so much soul he wont feel guilty about it. - Joe Sweet - Fusion Weekly

Tony G & Funknut plays the kind of music that takes you gently by the neck and forces you to dance. Theres just no choice. And once you fall into the groove, its impossible to get out.
Sean Hurley - New Hampshire Public Radio

Every song grooves, swoons and jives Brian Campbell Rochesterathome.com

A little bit of Funk with a whole lotta Soul, FunkNut is an organ based trio whose one mission is to bring Funk to the ears of men, women, and children! Formed in early 2008, the group has played festivals, colleges and clubs all over the east coast. The goal is to connect with people through melodic funk and improvisation. Now in their 5th year Funknut has expanded to a quartet. The line up is made up of Tony Gallicchio, Tristan Greene and Sean McLay. Funknut and its members have opened for and played with artists like The Temptations, Bernie Worrell of Parliament Funkadelic and Talkings heads, Robert Randolph, John Medeski, The Four Tops, Soulive, KRS-One, Particle, Alan Evans and Break Science as well as being on the TV show OnStage and radio stations in the north east. The new single Don't Say Goodnight is out and about and receiving great responses from sources like Jambands.com and Upstate Live, but the boys are heading back to the studio.