Every athlete remembers their first sport related thing, whether it be watching it on TV or little league, and the same goes with musicians. For Tomás Doncker, his first musical memory revolved around his grandfather playing “All Of Me” on his Tenor Sax and listening to his uncle sing at a huge church out in Philadelphia. Family got him started, but it was the small screen that he said “changed” his life in that regard. After seeing Larry Graham & Graham Central Station, he knew what he wanted to do. He said, “That kind of explains a lot about where I’m at as far as “Genres” and music are concerned. Aside from a collection of James Brown 45’s (He seemed to release a new one every week-AMAZING!!!), the first two albums I owned were The Beatles “Sgt. Pepper” and The Jackson Five’s “Get it together”. Then my Mother gave me her copy of B.B. King’s “Live At The Regal”. It all changed for me then…”
Getting his start back in the 70’s when the soul was there and the rock was getting heavier, Doncker notes the one thing he’s noticed about the industry after all these years, “I see things coming full circle. Bands, young people really focusing on the fundamentals of music-Playing,singing,writing. Very exciting! I’m not too thrilled with the obvious lack of fair,legitimate and consistent monetization in music,but I’m an optimist. It’s that optimism that motivates me. Always.” While optimism drives him, it was the harsh realities that led him to pen his latest record, “The Mess We Made.”
All the young black people being gunned down, it drove him to write and record the album in a matter of ten days, and while most would assume it was anger that drove him to work fast, it wasn’t. He said, “It just happened that way. I had reached a boiling/breaking point In regards to what was/is going on. We must turn things around,and quickly. I truly feel that music/art/theater/culture are our most effective tools to create,and most importantly sustain positive change. Not just in America,but the whole world.”
With all he’s done, he could never pick one single defining moment, saying, “There have been so many…I’m very grateful to be able to say that. Quite frankly, It’s all one continuing “Defining moment”- Isn’t it?” With that, he’s continuing with his moments this year with new releases on True Groove by Marla Mase, MacGollehon & The Hispanic Mechanics, Psych-Garage-Lo-Fi renegade Touchy Feely, a debut release from a fantastic young artist- Phoebe Nir (we’re also developing/producing a new musical that I wrote with her, “Diana & Navy & The Golden Tooth”). We’re also developing a theatrical presentation of “The Mess We Made”- so look out for those and make sure to keep in the know with Tomás Doncker.