The Hitman Blues Band

 

 

Blues Band Hired Guns


Russell "Hitman" Alexander
Johnny Gale
Richard Crooks
Seth Glassman
Kevin Rymer
Murray Weinstock
Greg "Clutch" Reilly
Michael Snyder

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Russell "Hitman" Alexander - Guitar, Vocals, composer & lyricist

Having over 40 years experience as a professional musician/bandleader, songwriter, publisher, and record company owner, Russell "Hitman" Alexander has seen many sides of the business. He has performed worldwide, first playing with “society" orchestras (Lester Lanin, Peter Duchin, Roger Stanley, and many others), with the progressive rock act “Childhood’s End”, the new wave band “Candy”, and now with his own group, The Hitman Blues Band.

As the son of famed jazz vibist Ray Alexander, he was exposed to music from childhood on. Early memories include his father’s jam sessions with luminaries such as Tal Farlow, Major Holley, Oliver Jackson, and many others, as well as attending many live performances. It was always his goal to be a professional musician, but he also began songwriting in his early teens.

Now, with the experience of thousands of performances to draw on, he’s constantly looking for ways to both give his audience a great show, and share his enthusiasm for the songs.

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Johnny Gale - Producer, Bass Guitar
Richard Crooks
Richard Crooks - Drums

Johnny has an uncanny mastery of musical nuances and is considered one of the world's experts on classic rock, rhythm and blues, and doo wop. On record, film, television and stage, Gale has worked with music legends and contemporary groups as diverse as Cyndi Lauper, Aaron Carter, M2M, Loudon Wainwright III, Kenny Vance & The Planotones, Jules Shear, Hank Ballard, The Ramones, Joan Osborne, James Brown, Aaron Neville, Andy Fortier, Kid Creole and The Coconuts, Mel Tormé, Taj Mahal, The Byrds, Dave Mason, Meat Loaf, Rudy West and The Five Keys, Van Morrison, Iggy Pop, Little Isidore and The Inquisitors, Pookie Hudson and The Spaniels, and Carol Bayer Sager. In 1994 his own album 'Gale Force' was released on Guitar/Relativity Records and was awarded best guitar record of the year by Guitar Magazine. He has also been involved as a writer/producer of commercials with Lipton, Pepsi, Campbell's, Nestlé and others.

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Richard Crooks played drums throughout the CD, and has recorded and played with (among others) Dr. John, David Bromberg and Bob Dylan (Blood on the Tracks). Richard passed in December of 2014, but his playing on "Angel In The Shadows" speaks for itself - he was a master of his craft, and a pleasure to work with.

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Seth Glassman - Bass

Kevin Rymer - Organ, piano

Veteran bassist Seth Glassman has played with so many artists it's hard to list them all. Live and recorded credits include: James Brown, Paul McCartney, Aaron Neville, Brian McKnight, Jill Sobule, J.D Souther, Bobby Womack, Dr. John, Hall and Oates, Cyndi Lauper, Kenny Rogers, Carole King, Robert Waller, Jennifer Warnes, Rupert Holmes, Ronnie Spector, Cher, Bonnie Tyler, Judy Collins, Bette Midler, Carly Simon, Dion, Whitney and many (like another 50 or so well know names) more.

He is a writer, arranger, producer, engineer - and of course, an incredible bassist.

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Kevin has been performing for over 25 years, and is one of the earliest players to take full advantage of the electronic revolution that brought in synthesis.

During all this time, he still remains deeply involved in the traditional Hammond sound, playing on B-2 and B-3 organs in clubs and concerts all along the east coast.

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Murray Weinstock - piano

Greg "Clutch" Reilly - Bass Guitar
Murray Weinstock has toured extensively as keyboardist and singer with The Manhattan Transfer, Esther Phillips, Richie Havens, Don Covay and Buddy Miles. He sang and played keyboard with John Sebastian for the popular Welcome Back, Kotter television series. Murray has written and produced national commercials for CBS, Kix cereal, Toyota, KFC, Wendy's, Salon Selectives, Finesse, Flex and others.

In the late 1980's, he built Krypton Studios where The Beastie Boys, Ben E. King, Mavis Staples, Don Covay, and Bobby Womack recorded. Murray's website can be found at exoticamusic.com.

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Greg "Clutch" Reilly has played all over the world, starting with R&B groups in the mid sixties and going on as a freelance player with dozens of rock, blues and funk bands (including Ten Wheel Drive, Tony Orlando, and The Coasters.)

He spent ten years with The Hackensack Men, a popular group all along the east coast, and is now a respected "hired gun" for many New York blues groups.

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Michael Snyder - Baritone Sax
 

Michael Snyder is a virtuoso multi-instrumentalist. While he played Bari Sax for two cuts on Angel In The Shadows, he is often hired to play sax (from Bari to Soprano), keyboards, or clarinet. He arranges, sings - and has a repertoire of literally hundreds of tunes, from Bach to the latest Top 40 and everything in between, including many international songs. He is an amazing musician to work with, and Hitman is fortunate to have worked with him for a number of years in numerous live groups.

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The Hitman Blues Band

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