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Greg Adams

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Once Greg Adams picked up a trumpet, his course was set. He earned the first trumpet chair as a freshman at his Bay Area high school, and was writing arrangements for various school ensembles by the time he was a junior. Following high school, he joined Tower of Power, and was soon taking a major role in crafting the group's distinctive horn sound. Adams' first solo record, 1995's Hidden Agenda, released on Epic Records, established him as a major architect of the emerging "smooth jazz" sound, and a single from the album, a cover of Sade's "Smooth Operator," remains a virtual template for the genre. His second album, Midnight Morning, was released on Adams' own label, Ripa Records, in 2002, and tracks like "Roadhouse" led to famed jazz label Blue Note picking up the record for distribution. Adams' muted trumpet style, a mix of gentle jazz with R&B rhythms, all done with a cool, sexy ambience, has made him a sought-after session player and arranger, and he has worked with countless artists, including Santana, Madonna, Bonnie Raitt, B.B. King, the Rolling Stones, Lyle Lovett, and Quincy Jones. He has also contributed musical scores for several films, including Mask and Top Gun. His third solo project, Firefly, was released in 2004 on 215 Records. ~ Steve Leggett

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Years Active:

'70s, '80s, '90s, '00s