Felix Cavaliere’s Rascals to play in TiffinWritten by Vicki L. Kroll | | firstname.lastname@example.org
More than four decades later, Felix Cavaliere is still groovin’ and doing anything he likes to do.
The Hammond organ-playing singer-songwriter from The Rascals is stoked about 2012.
“I’ve got two projects in the fire right now. One of them is working with some young guys who are going to modernize me a little bit. One of the guys just finished an album with Daryl Hall, so I’m real excited about that,” Cavaliere said.
“And another request that came for me to do is sort of an unplugged Rascals album — piano and myself. I’m looking forward to that, too.”
In 2010, Cavaliere and Steve Cropper, guitarist from Booker T. & The MG’s, released their second disc, “Midnight Flyer.”
“It’s a joy to make new music. It’s kind of like having a bunch of new kids,” Cavaliere said and laughed. “And you just hope that other people like it and you try to do your best job.”
Lots of folks liked his work with The Rascals. From 1965 to 1969, Cavaliere sang lead on the energetic quartet’s hits: “Good Lovin’,” “Groovin’,” “A Beautiful Morning,” “A Girl Like You,” “I’ve Been Lonely Too Long” and “People Got to be Free.”
“The Atlantic label, which was where we did most of those things, was one of the most musical recording companies, and the reason was because they really honestly loved and appreciated their music,” Cavaliere said. “We got onto that label after a period of time where they had John Coltrane, Ray Charles, Miles Davis. We were honored to be there, the idea being, everything they did big, they tried to do to the highest level that they could.”
By 1972, the group known for blue-eyed soul had officially disbanded.
The Rascals — Cavaliere, singer Eddie Brigati, guitarist Gene Cornish and drummer Dino Danelli — were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997. In 2005, the band was voted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame. Four years later, Cavaliere and Brigati became members of the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
“I’m proud to be part of [the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame],” Cavaliere said during a call from New York City, where he was spending part of the holidays. “But I really enjoy the Songwriters Hall of Fame even more because of the fact that was so uniquely specialized. That was more specific to me.”
Cavaliere’s Rascals will play a 7:30 p.m. concert Jan. 21 at the Ritz Theatre in Tiffin. Tickets range from $20 to $50.
“I’m mostly proud of how our music is lasting,” he said. “When I started playing music, I was a classically trained pianist, and these are composers whose music has been around for hundreds of years. So I’ve got a ways to go, but that was my goal, so to speak, to not just do something and flit it away, but to be remembered musically.”