1) Charisma was an American progressive rock group from the early 70s.
Charisma came about from diverging roots emanating from 3 directions. The core of Charisma was Rich Tortorigi (drummer) and George Tyrell (bass player). Both were members of a New Britain, Connecticut soul band called The Mantiques. The Mantiques had been one of the three main horn-based bands in New Britain in the mid to late 60’s, along with Detroit Soul and The Paramounts. Paramounts drummer, Tyrone Lampkin went on to play with Gutbucket and the Parliament Funkadelics. In 1968, Rich Tortorigi recruited Tom Majesky to play guitar with The Mantiques, following their breakup. Tom enlisted Bernie Kornowicz, former bassist of The Last Five, to share guitar and organ duties. The final addition to the group was folk singer Mike DeLisa to sing lead. Tom and Bernie brought the rock and roll element to the Mantiques and Mike brought the band an element of folkiness.
It was in 1969 that The Mantiques signed with Roulette Records as a convenient tax write off to record an album. The album was produced by Ed Vallone and most of the songs were penned by Bruce McGaw. During the recording of the album, the band fought over a new name with their new management. Finally given an ultimatum, The Mantiques became Charisma, a name they hated. The album was recorded at Incredible Sound Studios in NYC. Charisma attempted to take control of the writing and production, but were put in their place and ordered to record the songs as scripted. Being the obstinate egocentrists that they were, they turned the recording sessions into a parody of the original intent.
Following the recording of What’s It Like, the very first song on the album, (which, was in fact recorded at Vanguard Studios), there was a shakeup. George Tyrell quit the band, Bernie Kornowicz became the bass guitarist, Tom Majesky became the lead guitarist, and a new organist was recruited: Bob Mocarsky. The album was eventually completed. In the meantime, Tom, Bob and lyricist/art director Suzi Langlois began writing songs for a second album.
Before the recording of the second album, Mike DeLisa decided to go his own way, leaving the job of lead vocalist to guitarist Tom. Beasts and Fiends was recorded at the Record Plant in NYC during the summer of 1970. The lead engineer was the top engineer in the business: Jack Hunt (the Woodstock album, Electric Ladyland), assisted by Dave Ragno (the Woodstock album), and Tom Fly (the Woodstock album, former drummer of Lother and the Hand People). While credit was given to Bruce McGaw and Ed Vallone for production, fact is the album was produced by Charisma with interference run by Jack Hunt.
Charisma was offered the option to record a third album for Roulette Records, but let it pass by. Probably a mistake.
Both albums sold better in Europe than they did in the USA. All income went to Roulette Records. Charisma got squat. Same old story.
It looked like Charisma was headed for a breakup as drummer Rich Tortorigi and keyboardist Bob Mocarsky decided to leave the band, but Tom and Bernie located drummer Jim Roselle and keyboardist Mike Reynolds and decided to give it another go. Jim recruited Paul Midney to play saxes and flute, and Ray Mase to play trumpet, piccolo trumpet and coronetto. For a while, Charisma became Midney, named after Paul (?!!), but ended up changing their name back to Charisma. Paul eventually ended up leaving the group to do his own thing in the world of meditation and Ray went on to play with the American Brass Quintet. About this time Charisma, along with sound engineers Ron Scalise (now at ESPN) and Norman Campbell (now in California) began building a recording studio. Charisma spent the next few years in the studio. But to be able to do that they were forced to compromise their principles by playing commercial music to raise money to pay for the studio addiction. Charisma auditioned several singers as front men and finally decided on Brian Salke. Brian was not allowed to do the few non-commercial gigs that came up once in a while, but he did appear on some of Charisma’s homegrown recordings.
In 1976, Charisma disbanded, leaving one incomplete recording,
- Tom Majesky - guitar, vocals
- Bob Mocarsky - keyboards, percussion
- Bernie Kornowicz - bass
- Ritchie Tortorige - drums
- Suzi Langlois - lyrics, cover design
2) CHARISMA is a action metal band from Kuhmo (Finland) formed in 2003. So far they have released 4 EP’s and 1 websingle.
Band members: TEEMU AHTONEN-vocals, ALTTI KARJALAINEN-bass, HEIKKI KÄHKÖNEN-guitar, MIKKO KÄHKÖNEN-guitar & OLLI KOKKONEN-drums.
Discography: BEAT YOUR ATTITUDE-ep (2003), HUNTING YOU-ep (2004), ROOT ROCK DEEP-ep (2005), TURHUUDEN HULLU-websingle (2006) & KATKERA JUOMA-ep (2008).
3) There is also a German power/prog-metal band called Charisma, who released one album, “Karma” in 1999. The band featured Annette Kienzle on vocals, Achim Welsch on guitars and vocals, Giovanni Soulas on bass, Markus Blind on drums and Richard Seibel on keyboards. Welsch, Soulas and Seibel are also members of Ivanhoe. The band has since split up.
4) American Christian Rock band from the early 70’s with a basement prog sound. Pretty dark and stoney at times for Jesus music.
Edited by stereo999 on 13 May 2012, 17:26
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