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Al DeGregoris

THREE BEFORE MIDNIGHT offers an intriguing potpourri of styles and genres. How did the concept of this debut album come about?

I wanted the album to reflect different moods and feelings so that different listeners could each find something for themselves within the music.

You've been playing the piano since you were a child of four. What was the first song that you heard back then that triggered your interest in music?

I heard a recording of "Watermelon Man" and really loved the Latin groove. I remember asking my Mom to play that record over and over again so I could play along on a set of Bongos. We didn't have "Guitar Hero" back then!

Is there a particular artist who has influenced you more than anyone else with regard to composing music and performing?

That's a difficult question as there are several artists who have influenced me over the years. To narrow it down to a few, I would say Joe Sample, Jeff Lorber and Spyro Gyra.

You've got some impressive awards on your resume. Could you elaborate for us?

Yes, I've been very fortunate to have my music recognized by with some prestigious awards. I'm especially proud of the top 500 Latin award that was given to "North Shore Sunset".

In addition to being a musician, you also practice law, do the two crafts compliment each other?

Shhhh! Do we really want people to know that? LOL. In some respects yes, because I can do all of my own legal work for my music companies! In fact, there is a running joke amongst my oldest friends that I only became a lawyer so I could buy more equipment for the studio! Seriously though, the analytical tools that come with being a lawyer are extremely helpful in any pursuit.

What in your life outside of your music drives you in a creative sense?

My wife, daughter and family and the natural beauty of Long Island and the places we visit, are constant inspirations for me. You can find references to those things in my song titles, like "North Shore Sunset", "J-Walkin'," and "Hot Potato". There's usually a clue in the title as to what inspired the song.

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