Chicago based retro crooner-songwriter Frank Lamphere, whose performances have always been heavy on Rat Pack, Tony Bennett, Jack Jones and the like, on February 01, 2012 released a five song CD of jazz influenced songs that he wrote himself. The CD is appropriately titled Frank Swings.
The five cuts on Frank Swings represent Lamphere's first outing as a songwriter and his first self-released studio work since the 2002 Ain't Love a Kick. All of the songs, recorded at the popular Studiomedia Recording Company, feature a stellar piano trio and alternating tenor and alto sax work by one of Chicago's finest jazz soloists Eric Schneider. As an added attraction, trumpeter Art Davis joins the band on the first and fourth tracks. That first track "I Never Forgot', is featured prominently in the award winning independent film "Theresa is a Mother" 2012 by A May Sky Picture Production.
Like so many that sing this challenging genre, Lamphere when starting out, admittedly went for the Frank and Dean vocal sound. It did take several years for him to develop and hone the style that is definitely his own. Music writer-jazz pianist Ben Dockery wrote "His voice, now more than ever before, is a wonderful blend of masculine strength and smooth, rounded edges. Rather than sounding like someone who is hesitant, Frank’s style embodies bridled strength. It’s classy, it’s powerful, but it’s never rude or unkind". In addition to performing, in 2007 Frank began committing to paper the melodies that had been bombarding his thoughts and emerged as a songwriter with something relevant to add to the jazz and traditional pop standards conversation.
Lamphere, has held high profile gigs at Jilly's and the Peninsula Hotel and has performed in several musical productions including Baseball Swings in New York. And although he enjoys nightclub work he describes most nightclubs as "sports bars that occasionally and half-heartedly attempt live music". Consequently, with a keen sense for marketing and business management (Frank has run a west suburban deck construction company A-Affordable Decks for twenty one years) he took his niche act to corporate America, and has experienced very good success. Frank and his diverse bands perform shows for local merchants to Fortune 500 companies. Country clubs, theaters and such venues as the Palmer House's Empire Room, and the Marriott Marquis in Times Square have all played host to Rat Pack Jazz (Lamphere's music brand). Frank who speaks Italian also has a band Franco and the Rumpy Cats that performs a variety of Italian and Italian-American songs for festivals and events with an Italian flair. Frank and his group performed at the Festa Italiana 2013 in Chicago's Little Italy.
With the release of these fresh songs that feature these top notch performances, Lamphere is hopeful that Frank Swings, will be a memorable listening experience, that people from all walks can enjoy. Future projects include a Dean Martin tribute CD and the release of more "cutting edge" original songs.