Matt Stamm

Matt Stamm

 New York City, New York, USA
BandPopSinger/Songwriter

Matt Stamm is a piano-playing singer-songwriter from Brooklyn, NY. He performs powerful rock and pop with sentimental tone, catchy melodies, and deep, meaningful lyrics.

Biography

Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter Matt Stamm may prefer to tickle the ivories when it comes to making his music – just listen to his new EP, Where Do We Go, for proof – but in today’s musical climate, where it sometimes feels like any Manny, Moe, or Jack’s Mannequin can sit down in front of a piano and pound out a hit single, it’s nice to know that there are still a few musicians out there who can actually play more than one instrument.

Stamm has been training for life in the music biz for as long as he can remember. “I was in the All-County Chorus when I was in grade school, I played saxophone from fifth through ninth grades, and I took piano lessons from ages seven through eleven,” says Stamm. “It feels like I’ve always been involved in music in one form or another.”

Despite such a promising start, it wasn’t until his freshman year of college that Stamm began pursuing an actual career in music…and, frankly, he blames peer pressure. “There was a big gap when sports took over for me,” explains Stamm. “All of my friends were joining sports teams, and you’re either in band or you’re on the football team; I opted for athletics at that point, and I didn’t just have time for the music lessons anymore. I wish I stayed on track; I’d probably be in a different place right now.”

Still, Stamm hadn’t given up on music altogether. At 17, he began teaching himself to play guitar, which came in handy upon his arrival at Boston University for his freshman year, and, accordingly, his first team-up was with his college roommate, Charlie Diego. “Meeting Charlie, getting to know him, and having him always playing guitar…there was always music in the room, so we just naturally fell into playing together and writing together,” explains Stamm. “He was definitely the impetus for my getting starting again in a big way.”

Stamm and Diego began performing for the people in their dorm, giving Stamm his first real experience playing before an audience. The collaboration between the roommates inspired Stamm to try working with other musicians as well; one such partnership resulted in the formation of The Perfect Candidates, with fellow singer/songwriter Jon Hartstone. “Jon and I really took it up to the next level,” says Stamm. “I had all these songs I’d written, he had his own songs, and we liked what each other had done, so when we started playing out, he’d put a guitar part or a harmony on one of my songs, I’d do the same for his, and we were able to put together a set list with our existing material.”

The life of The Perfect Candidates was relatively brief but consistently educational, particularly during the recording of their EP, American Hot, which was done with hired guns playing bass and drums for the duo. Although the recording process itself was a lot of fun, Stamm admits that the final result was stricken with a nasty case of overproduction. “We were attempting to make a huge-sounding record, and…well, basically, we filled every single square iota of tape space with whatever idea we had, and I learned a very valuable lesson: sometimes, less is more.”

It wasn’t until Stamm and Hartstone moved from Boston to Miami and teamed with the Faulkner brothers – Mike and Bruce, who played bass and drums, respectively – that The Perfect Candidates began touring behind the EP in earnest. Hartstone, however, soon returned to Boston, which gave Stamm the opportunity to play the frontman, a role he quickly learned to relish; he also found a new collaborator in Hartstone’s replacement, guitarist Mark Kondrat, now a member of the Latin-Grammy-nominated band Locos Por Juana. Unfortunately, it soon became evident to Stamm that Miami was not the best locale for a band like The Perfect Candidates; worse, the rest of the band didn’t offer much enthusiasm to his suggestion that they relocate to New York City.

“They were pretty deeply rooted in the area,” explains Stamm, “and they didn’t want to leave. But I was serious about continuing with the music. I mean, when Jon left, I had become the frontman, and not only was I playing rhythm guitar, but I was also adding an element of organ to some songs, and I’d also bought a stage piano. So when I left, I got right into my stuff, concentrating almost solely on piano songs.”

Stamm’s debut solo album was recorded with assistance of his former bandmate, Mark Kondrat. “I stayed at Mark’s house and we recorded it his home studio,” says Stamm. “In fact, he co-produced it; I had all the songs, but we both came up with the arrangement and instrumentation. My collaborations with Mark always seem to result in strong material.”

Indeed, the resulting album – 2005’s I Could Be Happy Here – served two purposes: it provided Stamm with the opportunity to tour behind a product of which he was extremely proud, and it enabled him to attract the attention of a new manager (Aimee Berger), as well as new songwriting collaborators like Arnie Roman and Russ DeSalvo. “I’m ecstatic to be working with

Lyrics

Mr. Perfect

Written By: Matt Stamm, Russ DeSalvo, Arnie Roman

Never had a chance with you, never had a shot
You think he’s everything that you think I’m not
You never saw me, didn’t really want to work that hard
He’s so easy and eager to please
So far

CHORUS: He’s Mr. Perfect
And I’m Mr. Out The Door
He’s a brand new 3-piece suit
And I’m torn
I’ve heard tell that you wear him well
But I’m not sure
That he’s Mr. Perfect
He’s Mr. Perfect

Down the line with the passing of time
Who’s he gonna be
Love doesn’t age well, you turn the page and well
We’ll see
It might turn out that underneath he’s got a mean streak
But if he smacks your little heart around
Don’t blame me

CHORUS

Saving Grace

Written By: Matt Stamm, Russ DeSalvo, Arnie Roman

I’ve got a feeling that you’re feeling what I’m feeling
Great minds think alike
These are the skating days
And we’ve just got to stay
One step ahead of the melting ice

We will reach that solid place
Where nothing falls through
We will be our saving grace

CHORUS: Saving grace
Saving grace
Day by day
We will be our saving grace

You’ve got a picture in your mind and it’s in my mind
White sand, rum and Coke
As good as it can get
Taking in the sunset
Feeling like the richer folk

We will reach that feather place
Where nothing is hard
We will be our saving grace

CHORUS

In between the hell and holiness
You will always be my life and breath
And I will be your
Saving grace

CHORUS

Where Do We Go

Written By: Russ DeSalvo, Arnie Roman, Ross Copperman

Sometimes it’s hard to face the day
And well I know it makes no difference anyway
Sometimes I’m feeling so unsure
That I don’t know what it is I’m living for

They talk about the end of days
There’s gotta be a better way

CHORUS: Looking at the stars painted on the sky
Where do we go
Where do we go from here
Summer turns to fall and I wonder why
Where do we go
Where do we go

People looking for a dream
In a world where nothing’s what it seems
Does anybody understand
That it’s all just a footprint in the sand

They talk about it every day
But nothing ever seems to change

CHORUS

I won’t stand down
No and I, I won’t shut up
If it’s all I got, it’s all I got

CHORUS

Everybody Falls

Written By: Russ DeSalvo, Arnie Roman, Ross Copperman

Everybody falls sometimes
So don’t you ever feel ashamed
You try so hard to dream again
But nothing seems to go your way

Don’t cry tonight
It’s gonna be alright

CHORUS: All I know
Nobody’s got the answers
Just let it go
Cuz nothing really matters
To yourself be kind
Everybody falls sometimes
Everybody falls sometimes

Your eyes can see the promised land
But you’re stuck in the cold and grey
You hate to play to fool sometimes
But everybody makes mistakes

Don’t hide your heart
We’ve all got scars

CHORUS

Even in your darkest hour
You’re beautiful
When hope has let you down
Don’t you know
Nobody’s got the answers

CHORUS

I Don't Want To Need You

Written By: Matt Stamm, Russ DeSalvo, Arnie Roman

Stop and take a breath
Nothing’s going wrong just yet
Though it’s something I’ve come to expect
Love is here today
But the past is never far away
Losing you is something I can’t take

CHORUS: I don’t want to need you
I don’t want to love you
I don’t want to need you, but I do

Will I pass my hand
Through you like a hologram
Will you fade like writing in the sand
Maybe this one time
I’ll be yours and you’ll be mine
I’ll be yours to leave behind

CHORUS

Stop and take a breath
Nothing’s going wrong just yet

CHORUS

Discography

"I Could Be Happy Here" - LP, 2005
"Where Do We Go" - EP, May 2007

Set List

Matt can play any set length ranging from 15 minutes to an hour. His repetoire consists mainly of original music, but he usually covers at least one song per set. Covers have included songs by The White Stripes, Nine Inch Nails, U2, Bill Withers, and many more.

A typical original set may include:

Where Do We Go ~ 3:30
Everybody Falls ~ 3:30
I Don't Want To Need You ~ 4:00
Mr Perfect ~ 4:00
Saving Grace ~ 3:00
Lucky ~ 3:30
Thanksgiving Day ~ 3:30
So This Is What It's Supposed To Be Like ~ 4:00
Just Wait ~ 3:30
Run To Me ~ 3:30
One-Way Ticket ~ 3:30