Adam Rafferty is one of the funkiest acoustic guitarist out there and, of course, one of my favs. He had quite the childhood starting with his birth and upbringing in Harlem that led to getting hooked playing blues guitar at age 6. When he turned 10, he had the dubious honor of getting mugged in front of his apartment building. By the age of 12 he was playing in a hard rock band then got ripped off by a club owner on his first gig at 15.
He started playing professionally at 19 and at 20 he was playing an after hours joint in Harlem on 137 street and Adam Clayton Boulevard where he says the band leader regularly drank himself into to oblivion and threatened customers with a 10 inch kitchen knife.
Adam’s played everywhere from the New York City subway to the upscale music rooms and concert halls of New York and Europe. He’s one of the most prolific producers of YouTube (millions of viewers) and instructional videos as well as two books explaining how to play his arrangements. He’s particularly well known for his arrangements Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson songs, but if you’ve never seen him combine playing two simultaneous melodies while accompanying himself as a human beatbox on Herbie Hancock’s Chameleon, you’ve led a deprived life. It is not to be missed. Oh, and you might want to check out his version of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition.” Best I’ve ever heard…Oh hell, while your at it, his version of one of my all time favorite Michael Jackson songs, “The Way You Make Me Feel” is incredible. And I used to do George Gershwin’s “Summertime” in coffee houses when I was playing professionally…but not like him.
Sigh, oh to be so talented.
Human Nature: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JNxiE1edUNg
Storm wind: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMEMfJM4QsA
The Hippie Dance: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QAmtVpZKd64
Can’t buy me love: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6nvBRc0DfM
Higher ground: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZakmPbXhBUM
The way you make me feel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T10El7IG1VE
Black or white: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zkju__lOlk8
Ain’t no sunshine when she’s gone: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OLF7-Ui94AI
Lovely day: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xjY-KQz5p5s
Rock with you: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWz9y9k7DIo
I’ve said several times that my favorite wines for summer are Sauvignon Blancs, Rieslings, Rosés, and Pinot Noirs. They’re light, crisp and fruity which certainly goes well with Nebraska’s summer heat. Tonight I’m suggesting a very nice Riesling to sip while you listen to the amazing Adam Rafferty. The 2011 Chateau St. Michelle Dry Riesling ($7.50) is just what its name implies. Drier than the usual Riesling, crisp, refreshing, and loaded with aromas and flavors of peaches, apples, and lemon-lime with a honeyed finish. It’s also a bit higher in alcohol content (12%) than a standard Riesling, which to me adds to its refreshment. All in all it’s a bright, juicy wine. Enjoy!