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The McGrath Project releases debut CD

Release party Nov. 1 at Cat Club on Sunset

Posted: October 24, 2008 5:35 p.m.
Updated: December 25, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Gary McGrath (center), Bryan Head on drums and Tim Bogert on bass perform with The McGrath Project at an event in June. The band will release their eponymous CD Saturday, Nov. 1 at The Cat Club Hollywood in West Hollywood.

 

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Add a Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame bass player, a drummer who played with Foreigner and is heard on Hillary Duff and "High School Musical" soundtracks, a keyboardist who has played with everyone from Guns n' Roses to Carole King, and a Grammy award-winning producer on guitar and vocals, and you have the recipe for a spectacular musical experience that explores the depths of pock, power pop and Southern rock.

The McGrath Project, founded as a corporate cover band for classic rock and Top 40 music, discovered it had a musical story to tell as well and went into the studio to craft a new CD of original music titled "The McGrath Project."

Influences on the McGrath Project CD range from The Cure to REM to Bon Jovi to the Beatles to the knack to the Rolling Stones to the White Stripes.

"We all have vast musical tastes but we all love great songwriters," McGrath said. "Lennon/McCartney or Jagger/Richards are very influential to all of us and we wanted to show that."

A CD release party will be held Saturday, Nov. 1 at The Cat Club Hollywood, 8911 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, a few doors west of The Whisky. The band will play from 9:30 p.m.-10:15 p.m. Owned by famed Slim Jim Phantom of The Stray Cats, the club is a popular rock/pop venue frequented by locals and the famous alike.

McGrath Project founder Gary McGrath - part musical prodigy and part musical impresario - gathered an impressive lineup including some of the best musicians playing today and has forged the group into a tight, explosive unit.

McGrath began his professional music career at age 12 as an award-winning soloist in the Texas Boys' Choir. He soon moved on to appear as a guest guitarist with Bon Jovi and Peter Tork's post-Monkees band Shoe Suede Blues. McGrath found his passion in producing and soon had 24 albums under his belt, including CDs for the band Nazareth and the Grammy award-winning "The Glory Of Gabriellie featuring E. Power Biggs and The Texas Boys' Choir" CD (remastered).

McGrath has also explored the world of radio and film. He has been a radio personality for Star 98.7-FM in Los Angeles, appearing with the "Jamie and Danny Morning Show" from January - March 2005, then hosting his own show on KCLA.com from April-August 2005, featuring his interviews with many of pop culture's greatest talents.

The movie world saw McGrath earn bit parts in "The Dukes Of Hazzard" and "Superman Returns." He also worked on music for two films, "This is Not All" and "Transformers."

Joining McGrath in The McGrath Project is Vanilla Fudge bass player and Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Famer Tim Bogert. A longtime friend of McGrath, Bogert has performed with Rod Stewart, Billy Cobham, Steve Perry, Bobby and the Midnights, Rick Derringer, Ronnie Laws, Boxer and Ginger Baker and many more world-class players and bands over the years.

Drummer Bryan Head is currently on the road with the supergroup Foreigner. In additionThe McGrath Project, he can also be seen playing with Dick Dale, Hilary Duff, Dead Rock West and Jason Freddy. Head was the studio drummer for the Walt Disney "High School Musical" CDs and Hilary Duff's CDs.

Sitting in for Head until he returns from his Foreigner tour at the McGrath Project appearances is drummer Brian "Dogboy" Burhill. He's worked as the house drummer for the American Music Awards and has been signed by "American Idol's" Randy Jackson to Columbia Records in the band Neve. He has toured the world opening for bands like Kiss, Rage and many more.

Keyboardist Teddy Zig Zag (Teddy Andreadis) is a highly esteemed and accredited multi-instrumentalist and singer. His talent and versatility have earned him recognition not only in the United States, but also internationally. He has shared stages with a diverse roster of musical talent including Guns n' Roses, Alice Cooper, Billy Bob Thornton, Carole King, Gilby Clark, Beth Hart, Mark Farner, Don Felder, Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, B.B. King and Bruce Willis. He has also has contributed his talents to the albums of many renowned musicians, including Carole King, Alice Cooper, The Boneshakers, Billy Bob Thornton, Lee Oskar, Nikki Sixx, Duff McKagan, Gilby Clarke and Slash's Snakepit and Velvet Revolver, among others.

Also sitting in on keyboards on occasion with The McGrath Project is Phil Parlapiano, also the current keyboardist for Bon Jovi. He first toured in 1983 with folk icon Joan Baez to support her "Live in Concert" Europe release. Parlapiano followed his musical path as a founding member of The Brothers Figaro. Signed to Geffen Records after a bidding war, the seminal folk-rock duo began to record their full-length album, "Gypsy Beat."

After opening for John Haitt, Billy Bragg and Jill Souble, the Brothers called it quits but continued playing together, backing folk legend John Prine. In 1996, Parlapiano was drafted into the smooth-jazz world by saxophonist Dave Koz. Movie-goers saw Parlapiano in the blockbuster film "Titanic" as an accordion player during the memorable scene in the lower decks when Kate and Leo are dancing. Parlapiano has toured and recorded with seminal punkers Social Distortion and is featured on the soundtrack of the movie "Lords of DogTown."

"The McGrath Project" CD was the result of a three-day studio session. Day one was drums, day two was keys and guitars and day three was vocals and bass.

"It was good fun with good people," said Bogert. "Gary writes good songs that are fun to listen to and dance to. When he is ‘on' and on stage, he is as good as it gets."

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