Jim Fusco
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Jim Fusco

Meriden, Connecticut, United States | SELF

Meriden, Connecticut, United States | SELF
Band Rock Singer/Songwriter

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Jan
13
Jim Fusco @ Brother's Restaurant, 33 North Cherry Street

Wallingford, Connecticut, USA

Wallingford, Connecticut, USA

This band has not uploaded any videos
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7/28/05

- Who: Jim Fusco, www.jimfusco.com, a multi-instrumentalist whose recently released record “What About Today?” features Fusco and barely any accompaniment on 13 layered and poppy tunes. Released on Fusco’s 21st birthday in May, “Today?” captures the SCSU senior and Wallingford resident’s influences, from the harmonies of the Beach Boys to the softer, folk-rock of bands like America and Bread. For such a young musician, Fusco is clearly stuck in rock’s glory days, and he shows he can ably play a multitude of instruments and the songs don’t suffer from not having a band. A video-production major, the songwriter clearly has a knack for recording and engineering a record, too, as “Today?” spreads from speakers the same way a professionally recorded disc would.

- Where you can see him: For one-man band of sorts, Fusco obviously has a hard time playing out. But he will be at the Half Moon Restaurant and Cafe (corner of Center and North Main streets, Wallingford) from 6:30-9 p.m. Saturday. Since it’s a rare thing, it’s one not to miss. Fusco clearly has a bright future ahead of him, all it takes to confirm this is a quick listen to some of the tunes on “Today?” many of which are clearly influenced from the bands on his mix...and here that is:

- “Feel A Whole Lot Better,” The Byrds - My God, the perfect song. Twelve-string guitar solo, great harmonies, a wonderful tune and perfect Gene Clark lyrics. My favorite song of all time.

- “You Just May Be the One,” The Monkees - Starts off with a great bass riff, has a wonderful message in the lyrics and there’s something about it that I just love.

- “Inside Out,” Traveling Wilburys - From the band’s second album, this song combines influences from all band members, especially Dylan, Harrison and Petty. You can tell that after over 20 years in the business, they got it.

- “Day Tripper,” The Beatles - How does one pick a favorite Beatles song? Well, I choose mine on the fact that I yell, “Turn it up!” whenever it comes on.

- “The Story in Your Eyes,” The Moody Blues - Another great song from one of my favorite bands - what a guitar riff! This song really gets me up and going and is another “perfect” song.

- “The Little Girl I Once Knew,” The Beach Boys - My absolute FAVORITE band of all time. We’re talking fanatical here. But, I can choose this song with confidence because of its classic sound.

- “To Each His Own,” America - I could’ve picked “Sister Golden Hair,” but this song (off of the “Homecoming” album) is one of those songs that reminds me of a certain time: graduation. The line “Will I make it through the summer? Breaking ties with the old and new” just gets me every time.

- “Brian Wilson,” Barenaked Ladies - This song single-handedly made me buy every one of BNL’s albums and learn each and every word. I play this in concert, but there’s nothing better than hearing BNL play it in concert - perfection.

- “Not the Same,” Ben Folds - This is the best song off of his album “Rockin’ the Suburbs,” but I heard it before I had any of his albums. I first got “Ben Folds Live” and heard this song. I loved it so much the first time I heard it, I set the CD player to repeat, which I’ve never done before or since.

- “If I Were You,” The Wondermints - I had the great pleasure of meeting this band, which plays with Brian Wilson as well, and bought this CD because of it. I had no idea it would become one of my Top Five albums. This song is an amazing song - catchy and excellently executed. I could listen to this 100 times in a row and not get sick of it. - New Haven Register- Written by Pat Ferrucci


There is a dry sense of humor at work here, at least judging from the title. Singer/songwriter Jim Fusco (http://www.jimfusco.com) is asking about the present time when, in fact, he is living in the past. The strange part is that Fusco wasn’t even born yet in the time period that he’s nostalgic about. Back in the '80s it was common for alternative rockers to revive certain sounds from the '60s. Considering that was their childhood, it made sense. Fusco defies logic. How can a 21-year-old kid write and record an LP that sounds like 1967? No, there’s no studio trickery involved, at least that which is apparent. Fusco’s voice - clear as water, melodic, and sad and dreamy as Brian Wilson’s - is a ghost from the past.

The songs feature the ringing guitars from the Summer of Love and calming hippie harmonies although minus the cliches that would horribly date this material. “Another Backwards Day” wouldn’t sound out of place on an oldies radio station. In fact, just about every track on this album could be played on KZOK or KBSG without anybody noticing they were from 2005. However, Fusco isn’t a Xerox machine for baby boomers; the sincerity is revealed in his vocals and the good-natured sentiments of his lyrics. - By Karla Ash, TheWigFitsAllHeads.com


Somebody check this man's I.D.

That a 21-year-old singer/songwriter can so accurately recapture the summer breeze gentle guitar pop of the late '60s, without parody or irony, is downright bizarre. Perhaps Jim Fusco (http://www.jimfusco.com) is the reincarnation of a forgotten rock star. Or maybe he's lying, using a fake bio and Photoshop-tweaked pictures.

But does it really matter? After all, we should be happy enough that somebody remembers how good the music of that time period was, giving it the proper respect and tender loving care. "What About Today" is track after track of hummable '60s golden lights, from the wah-wah psychedelia of "Another Backwards Day" (even the title is so '60s) to the Beach Boys-ish harmonies of "Sometimes."

Fusco must've inherited an older parent or relative's record collection and discovered the sense of wonder and joy that the Beach Boys, the Byrds, the Zombies, the Beatles, and the Moody Blues brought to an entire generation. Every song is sung with affection and good vibrations.

Oddly enough, the best track here actually reminds one of the '70s and not the '60s. The charming, melancholy "What Left to Do?" is gorgeous, reminiscent of Bread, America, and Classics IV.

Fusco is a man out of time - or is he? Whether or not Fusco is actually 21 has yet to be believed.

Author: Adam Harrington - Whisperin & Hollerin


By Ralph Hohman, Record-Journal staff

WALLINGFORD — These days, work is all about play for Jim Fusco. His part-time job doing computer work for a local real estate agent is fun, he says. But more than that, it's a way to get money for instruments and recording equipment, with a little left over for lunch with his girlfriend at Burger King.

"What else am I gonna spend it on?" he says from the basement of his family's home.

The place is his studio, where Fusco makes CDs and videos, his latest titled "What About Today?" It mixes a little of both in an enhanced CD format, with the video playable on computer. Aside from buying a 24-track digital machine on which he recorded the album, Fusco says he put $1,500 into pumping out 1,000 discs through a Virginia company called Oasis CD Manufacturing. As part of the deal, "What About Today?" is distributed through Internet outlets like Amazon.com and Borders.com.

"I designed the cover and the back, and the disc art — which took forever — sent them everything, and they put everything together," Fusco says.

The result is a package that looks more professional than do-it-yourself, PC-copied CDs (with photographs taken in Fusco's yard and at West Haven Beach), down to the real, functional barcode.

At 21, and heading into his senior year as a video production major at Southern Connecticut State University, Fusco (online at www.jimfusco.com) has made six CDs, some of them in musical partnership with his friend, Chris Moore. Last Year, Fusco compiled videos from the music of his first five albums into a DVD called "The Best of Jim Fusco: Volume One."

"He puts an incredible amount of effort into it," Moore says.

For "What About Today?" Fusco did just about everything himself (Moore co-wrote one song and contributes harmonica work). Fusco has an array of acoustic and electric guitars, basses, drums, keyboards, ukuleles and a mandolin.

"If it's needed in the song, I'll find a way to learn how to play it," he says.

For the two videos on "What About Today?" Fusco used a single camera, playing through each song three times, repositioning the camera with each take. Editing makes it look like there were three cameras on the shoot.

For the album's 13 songs, Fusco laid down his own drum tracks first, followed by electric guitar, bass, acoustic guitar before the vocals, on which he often performs multiple harmonies with himself.

"He's a very good musician," says Moore, who shares the Web site with Fusco at www.fusco-moore.com. "His strength has always been vocals, but more and more, especially on electric guitar … it's becoming more of his own style."

When it comes to writing, Moore says of Fusco, "Everything in his life, he interprets into songs."

"What About Today?" is a flowing album, not a collection of disjointed singles, something that goes back to Fusco's influences — bands such as the Beach Boys and the Beatles. He's also old-school (relatively at least), preferring the feel of the 24-channel mixer over computer recording, and CDs over downloads, the way his parents' generations clung to LPs.

His throwback style also presents some marketing problems. Fusco says he'd love to play out more, and he bought a portable public address system that would do the job in a coffeehouse setting. But while he's of legal drinking age, he says finding a bar gig is hard to do. A lot of places want rock 'n' roll cover bands, not necessarily softer rock originals like Fusco's.

"I've done as much as I can by myself now," he says. "I need a manager." - Record-Journal


Wouldn't it be nice: Jim Fusco, the Beatles and Beach Boys fan, and Chris Moore, who leans toward Bob Dylan, are both 19-year-old college students dutifully preparing for the real world.

Fusco studies video production at Southern Connecticut State University and can see himself one day at ESPN. Moore is working toward an English degree at Central Connecticut State University, and is considering a career as college professor.

Neither would mind if a music career got in the way of all that.

They've been buddies since eighth grade. In recent years they've gotten serious about producing and marketing their own work. The hub of their operation is in the nicely finished basement of Fusco's family home in Wallingford, well-appointed with musical instruments and recording equipment.

Media moguls: Fusco, who also has a radio show Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Southern's WSIN (1590 AM), says his sound engineering skills are self-taught.

"I've always had a knack for computers."

"And I just mimic him," adds Moore.

Fusco says he recorded his first album in 2001, and has done five since. His music is smooth, mostly acoustic folk/rock, played with Moore and with Fusco's girlfriend, Becky Daly, and sometimes with Fusco's kid brother, Mike.

A few weeks ago they played out for the first time, at a church open-mike night.

"We didn't know how we'd be received, because there were harder bands there," says Moore. But they say they got a good reception, and plan to try again.

Money matters: Their music (performed mostly by Jim) and Moore's autobiographical, "semi-poetic" book are on sale through www.jimfusco.com, www.chris-moore.com and www.fusco-moore.com (they lead to the same place).

Fusco is also working on a book, "based on the type of people Chris and I are, but in a much different setting."

Moore's hand-assembled book is $9.95 online; Fusco's double CD, "That's All Folks & That's All Jim," goes for $7.95.

The two do all the work. Moore's part-time job at Staples puts him near a source of raw materials. Fusco works weekends at Cheshire Video, where he says he learned to shrink wrap his CDs. They manage their own Web sites.

Costs them about $5.50 for a disc, plus what they pay PayPal, Fusco says. He makes about 25 discs at a time, and says he's sold about 20 copies of the new album.

"And we give free shipping, so really online we're not making anything."

That makes taxes simple, Moore says.

"We finally figured out if we don't make any profit, it's not gonna be an issue."

Bang on the drum all day: Fusco has been a musician near as long as he can remember.

"When I was little, I didn't listen to kids' songs," he says. "They started me right off with the Beatles and the Moody Blues and the Monkeys."

He began playing pots-and-pans drums, then moved on to guitar, keyboards and bass. Moore started playing three years ago — keyboards, guitar and harmonica. Lyrics have been his primary contribution.

Old school: With their CDs and Web sites and an upcoming music DVD, Fusco and Moore indulge their old-rock fixation with as many CDs as they can afford. They're late coming to music downloading and MP3s.

"We're packaging guys," Fusco says. "We love liner notes."

— Ralph Hohman - The Record-Journal


Discography

"With or Without You" LP 2001
"Roll Off My Back" EP 2002
"My Other Half" Double LP 2002
"Formula" LP 2003
"That's All...For Now" Preview EP 2003
"That's All..." Double LP 2003
"What About April 26th?" Preview EP 2005
"What About Today?" May 2, 2005
"Halfway There" April 6, 2009
"Those Around Us" January 13, 2012

All recordings available to listen to for free at http://jimfusco.com

Photos

Bio

Jim's love of music started in the late 80s when his father would play George Harrison, the Monkees, the Traveling Wilburys, the Moody Blues, and Tom Petty for him (instead of children's songs). Jim instantly took to this music at such a young age and knew he wanted to play music himself.

In 1992, Jim's parents bought the Beach Boys' 30th Anniversary Box Set and from that moment, Jim became the biggest Beach Boys fan in the country (under the age of 35, of course). Jim's love for Brian Wilson's melodies and harmonies inspired Jim to want to make similar music.

Jim started playing the drums in elementary school, graduating to professional lessons in high school. He loved playing the drums, but as a budding songwriter, he knew he needed to play a more melodic instrument. So, he saved up and bought an electric keyboard, which he taught himself to play.

After that, Jim taught himself the guitar- his current instrument of choice. His love for the instrument has grown into an impressive collection of guitars that he uses frequently.

When Jim started recording his own real songs in late 2000 (New Year's Eve into 2001, to be exact), he combined his new musical talents with his love for harmonies. Of course, he could only do so much on a 4-track tape recorder...

Fast-forward to present-day. Jim has released many albums and has gained critical success for his work on his own and with a band. Jim utilizes a 24-track digital recorder now and plays all of the instruments on his original songs. He prides himself on making music that sounds professional in all aspects.

Jim also started the very popular Laptop Sessions acoustic cover songs series on YouTube back in 2007. He has recorded over 200 cover song videos to date and has earned over a million YouTube views! This has obviously expanded Jim's repertoire of cover songs and he feels as if he can entertain any audience with a variety of songs, both original and otherwise.

What sets Jim apart from other bands? Well, he's a one-man-band! Jim's well-rounded musical talents and ambitions make him the perfect entertainer and he's always excited to perform in front of new people.