STORMIN' NORMAN ZAMCHECK
Stormin’ Norman Zamcheck is a pianist, singer/songwriter and raconteur. He has been writing songs since he was old enough to pick out a tune on the keyboard and write down the lyrics on his mother’s linen napkins.During the course of his four-decade career, Norm has penned over five hundred musical compositions.
A New York transplant, Norm hales from the Boston area. He has performed in venues up and down the East and West coasts as well as internationally. In the late 70's his band, Stormin' Norman & Suzy, was referred to by the New York Times as the "hottest act in town, " unleashing a deluge of media attention. Since then, Norman has played Carnegie Hall (twice); recorded for the Polydor/Polygram label; written scores for several movies and off-Broadway shows, appeared on a Dick Clark TV Special and worked as composer and music director for Pilobolous Dance Theater. He also toured with the Andy Statman Klezmer Orchestra, playing to appreciative crowds in Poland, Israel and Brooklyn.
As a composer of songs, Norman Zamcheck has been praised in publications from Rolling Stone Magazine to The New York Times, which called him “exceptionally good and exceptionally original.” Early on, Norm drew writing inspiration from a rich tradition of folk music. Over the passing years he harkened to personal muses such as Mose Allison, Randy Newman and Tom Lehrer. Like them, he brilliantly fuses melody, wit, humor and irony. He sees songs in terms of “novellas” and populates his tunes with amusing characters, memorable stories and rich allusions to nature and humanity (see Music Tree page). Stormin’ Norman’s music rocks with a blues/New Orleans beat; his unique sound as a hard-driving pianist has been described as boogie woogie meets twelve tone. His primary pianistic influences include Fats Waller, Thelonious Monk and Dr. John.
To support his growing family Norm stopped performing regularly in mid-career to become an inner-city teacher and principal . After toiling in the New York City & Norwalk (CT) school systems for over two decades he was able to retire from education and re-emerge--- Rip Van Winkle-like--- into the world of the bard and troubadour. Since 2011, Norm has caught up for lost time with break-neck speed. He booked himself gigs from the Shenandoah Valley in the South to the piney woods of Maine; from the Berkshires in Massachusetts to Boston; New York to Los Angeles; and across the pond in Paris. He has released two CD albums on his Abaraki Records label, and is preparing a third for release this coming spring/summer. Additionally, Norman found time to score a long-forgotten Nicholas Ray movie that has been locked in a vault for decades called We Can’t Go Home Again. And with the urging of Ray’s widow, Susan, Norm also scored a documentary about the legendary auteur film director. Both films were screened internationally and featured several times on the Turner Cable Classic network.
Shared Performance Stages
*Tom Waits *Taj Mahal
*Tracy Nelson *The Allman Brothers
*Coco Taylor *New Riders of the Purple Sage
*Manhattan Transfer * Eubie Blake
*Robert Klein *Proctor and Bergman
* Andy Statman Orchestra with Shlomo Carlebach
As Stormin’ Norman & Suzy
Fantasy Rag [Perfect Crime Productions, 1975]
Ocean of Love [Polydor Records, 1978]
Live at the P & G Bar [Abaraki Records, 2012]
As The Real Stormin’ Norman
Everyone Tells a Story [Abaraki Records, 2006]
Matchbox Universe [Abaraki Records, 2011]
Newton 1969 – Songs of a Very Young Man [Abaraki Records, 2015]
Film Scores – We Can’t Go Home Again Don’t Expect too Much
Yale University (B.A., Magna Cum Laude)
Columbia University (Ed.D)
All-Newton Music School
Longy School of Music
Berkeley College of Music