Neal Adams is a teaching and performing guitarist living in Seattle, Washington and has studied music and the guitar in a variety of styles since age 10. His interests in the guitar were started with his fascination with guitar greats such as Jimmy Page and Jimi Hendrix and have progressed to include too many artists to name. Pursuit of the guitar in the style of jazz were heavily inspired by greats such as Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, John McLaughlin, and many others.
My journey started out with me asking my mother for piano lessons from a local piano teacher who was a teacher of one of my childhood friends. I learned for a couple months before being a typical young kid and not being able to keep up the practice to keep the lessons moving along. My parents had a piano that was kept in the dusty unfinished downstairs of their house that was sort of my Dad’s workshop for whatever project he was working on. I would practice down there for the short time I took the lessons.
Then, with a vested interest in rock guitar, I was given a sunburst Les Paul copy from my mother for Christmas. In addition to taking a few guitar lessons, I joined the Jr high school band playing trumpet. After Jr High ended so did my playing of the trumpet but the guitar was there waiting for me to get more serious. I was a big music listener and concertgoer that very much fueled my need to pursue music as a career.
I started with my second guitar teacher Brad Rabuchin at the end of High School. He is a great guitar player and teacher who always tried to steer me in the right direction while being exceptionally patient. I always found his playing and composing very inspiring. I first used to see him play at a local steak house in Thousand Oaks. We used to get asked to leave the bar area, where the band played, at 10 pm because were under drinking age. I think the band used to try to start at 9 pm so we’d get like an hour then, “the boot.”
So, in addition to classes at the community college with Dr Dolly Kessner, I played guitar in a local band called 185 Red as well as the Moorpark College Jazz Band. I was getting a taste for playing out in bars and other venues while working on my chops.
Then in 1996 I was accepted to and began attending the Berklee College of Music in Boston Massachusetts. There I majored in Jazz Composition as well as playing in as many ensembles that I could. I took lessons from Mark White, Garrison Fewell, John Baboian, Ron Mahdi, Steve Roshinski, Ken Pullig, Greg Hopkins too many to mention, lots of great players and writers.
After graduating in 1998 I returned to California and moved to Orange County to further my studies at Cal State Fullerton and study with guitar player Ron Eschete. Ron Has played with everyone over the years such as Gene Harris, Ray Brown, Joe La Barbara, and Joey Defrancesco and was a big inspiration to me.
Now days I live in Washington and teach guitar lessons and perform with a few different groups in Seattle area. I am currently playing a lot of jazz standard and funky jazz original material with the Neal Adams Trio and in a few different friendly settings.
I’ve been lucky enough to learn from and share the stage many great players such as: Bob Florence, James Moody, Chuck Flores, Jeff Ellwood, Brad Rabuchin, Larry Knoose, Steve Sykes, Ron Eschete, Tom Rainer, Paul Krebich, Luther Hughes, Glen Cashman, and Chuck Tumlinson to name a few.
I’m always looking new performing and teaching opportunities to help me grow as a musician and teacher.