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Arthur Adams


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“I love the spirit in your guitar playing,” B.B. King told Arthur Adams at the beginning of their long musical association and friendship. Deep soul and a life force blazing with intensity yet inherent sweetness radiate in layer upon layer of the talents and musical genres through which Adams weaves his magic. Singer, songwriter, guitar-slinger and dynamic performer, Adams’s diverse life experiences and musical history have merged and matured into a unique style that expresses universal emotions through a highly individual lens.

Arthur Adams entered the world on Christmas, 1940 in Medon, Tennessee, making his singing debut in church at the age of six. He started playing guitar on his front porch with a few chords his mother taught him — initially on a guitar his uncle had tuned to an arcane, barely-used scale. Adams copied songs he heard on the radio, adding licks as he toured Tennessee and Arkansas as a teenager in a short-lived gospel group. By 1959 he was playing in Nashville, where he joined tenor saxophonist Jimmy Beck’s band. They toured with Gene Allison, who was still coasting on his 1957 hit, “You Can Make It If You Try.” However, Allison ditched the band in Dallas following a dispute with a promoter. With customary resourcefulness, Adams remained in Dallas for several years, cutting some R & B singles and adding complex jazz melodies and rhythms to his prodigious guitar chops.


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