the Real Stormin' Norman
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the Real Stormin' Norman

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE
Band Rock Blues

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Music

Press


tormin' Norman's tunes keep flowin'



By Johanna Gustavsson

Norman Zamcheck realized every musicians' dream in 1976 when he took the stage at Carnegie Hall to perform with his band "The Real Stormin' Norman and Suzy."

It was the pinnacle of his music career.

A couple of years later, the gigs dried up, and, with twins on the way, Mr. Zamcheck got his teaching license and left the crowds for the classroom.

Now with his son and daughter finishing up college , Stormin' Norman is lookin' to make a comeback.

On Saturday, he played a much more modest venue, at An Beal Bocht Café in Riverdale, and while his former band mate Suzy wasn't there, Mr. Zamcheck's passion for music still was.

"I tell stories. When I create a song at a special moment in time, I can recreate that moment at anytime again by playing the song. That is the magic about music," he said.

Donning a tan panama and suspenders decorated with music notes, the ever-cool Mr. Zamcheck let his fingers dance across the keyboard as his raspy voice filled the crowded room with original songs of love and life such as "Island of Love" and "Beggar in the House of Time."

Though Mr. Zamcheck doesn't have an Irish bone in his body, he has always felt closely connected to the Gaelic musical tradition of storytelling. His melodies are an innovative mix of Irish folk with a touch of "boogie-woogie."

The tunes seemed to get the pint-swigging patrons of this cozy, Irish pub tapping their toes.

"This is not really my style, but I kind of like this guy. He's cool," said Mario Castillo, talking in between sips of his Guinness.

Looking at the bearded Mr. Zamcheck tickle the ivories, few would guess his day job.

In 1984, he began teaching at a school in the South Bronx. He worked his way up the Board of Education ladder, eventually becoming assistant principal at Far Rockaway High School. A year ago, he took a job closer to home, teaching literacy at the Community Health Academy in Washington Heights.

But music was always on his mind.

"I love teaching and I am grateful that I got the opportunity to work with kids, but I am ready to go back to music on a full-time basis again," said Mr. Zamcheck. "I came to New York to be famous. I came to make music. That is what I am going to do."

For more information on upcoming shows or to buy Mr. Zamcheck's latest album, 'Every One Tells a Story,' go to www.zamcheck.com.

This is part of the August 2, 2007 online edi - Riverdale Press


Discography

Stormin' Norman & Suzy Fantasy Rag Perfect Crime Records
Stormin' Norman & SUZY, Ocean of Love Polydor Records
Andy Statman Andy's Ramble Rounder Records
The Real Stormin' Norman, Every One Tells a Story,
Abaraki Records

Photos

Bio

The Real Stormin' Norman is the songs, piano playing and vision of a unique artist who has been composing since childhood. The sound is driving blues rock with unpredictable harmonies, strong melodies and unforgettable lyrics. A conservatory drop-out, Norman fell in love with the playing of Meade Lux Lewis. Pinetop Perkins and other piano masters, along with Thelonious Monk, Otis Span and Mose Allison . He came to public attention as the pipe-smoking, hard-living founder of "Stormin' Norman & Suzy," a band that blazed through the northeast during the seventies and eighties, traveling from Boston to New York City to win national media attention and a major record deal. Married and the father of twins (soon to be three), he decided to quit the road, and went on to teach and supervise a series of tough inner-city high schools, always keeping up an active musical and composing life. In 2005 Norman began working with some of the great musicians with whom he had toured over the years, and recorded "Every One Tells a Story," on Abaraki record. Currently he is working with the Stormin' Band, featuring John (Gerry) Putnam. A new cd, "Matchbook Universe," will be completed in the fall of '09.