A Man Called Adam - on Acid Jazz Records
One of the very first bands signed to the label, A Man Called Adam were part of the short lived Soho beatnik scene of the mid 80s. An eight piece live jazz group featuring the sweet voice of Sally Rodgers on vocals, they were regulars at The WAG club and Dingwalls long before the jazz dance scene kicked in. Clad in black polo-necks and beads with goatee beards, the band contributed those elements to the fashion of the early acid jazz scene. Musically though they were heavily influenced by sixties films like Sweet Charity, Blow Up and The Party. Heavy percussion, from (later Leftfield member) Paul Daley and a driving snare gave the band a very dance floor orientated appeal. By the time Acid Jazz established itself, A Man Called Adam had already released a couple of tracks on a jazz dance compilation alongside Kalmia and the Jazz Warriors. The band, however, were restless.Not content to copy the music of the sixties, A Man Called Adam were one of the original pioneers of sample based music, something reflected in their very first single for the label, the instrumental A.P.B. Unusually for Acid Jazz, the single was also released in Germany (with a different sleeve, through Teldec Records) and is a wonderful mixture of samples and live music – the band made a video that matched the sample led dancefloor groove of the record and was possibly the first ever mash-up promo video with samples from a whole host of moving images (an idea later built upon by Coldcut amongst others). At the same time they appeared on the label’s first ever Totally Wired compilation with a track called Love Me To death which showed a transitional period into their new style and sounds.The band split soon after but the core remained together, Steve Jones, Paul Daley and Sally Rodgers became AMCA2 and recorded their groundbreaking Earthly Powers/Techno Powers. Released on 12”, the record was unique in that it had two versions of the same song. The first was a Lonnie Liston Smith jazz funk dance track while the b-side was an electronic version of the same track. The combination worked, giving Acid Jazz their first number one single in the dance charts and established the band as truly groundbreaking innovators.They recorded one further single for Acid Jazz’s Ritmo subsidiary before moving to Big Life for an album. Daley soon left to form dance superstars Leftfield, but Jones and Rodger’s partnership continued and A Man Called Adam became the darlings of the Balearic Beat scene based around the legendary Café Del Mar in Ibiza.