Angelo J. Falanga
By Labor Day 1995 Angelo J. Falanga had been living in Brooklyn, New York for three months with his maternal grandmother, helping as she recovered from open heart surgery. Celebrating the holiday, a block party had been organized by too few of the neighbors to bother getting a permit to close off the street. Mr. Falanga was cooking chicken using a barbecue grill wheeled up onto the concrete in front of his grandmother's stoop when a neighbor sat down in a beach chair set up behind him. That neighbor was Frank A. Stokes. What began with a one hour conversation once the chicken was cooked would be for Mr. Falanga fifteen years of work and friendship with the late composer and bandleader. Stokesified! is Mr. Falanga's memoir of the experience, based on more than 20 hours of interviews he recorded beginning in 2001. Angelo J. Falanga studied Political Science at California State University, Long Beach. He left college for a job on the NBC game show Time Machine while studying comedy writing with Get Smart writer Dee Caruso at UCLA. Mr. Falanga worked from 1985 to 1992 for the late lighting designer Wally Russell as a personal assistant and in the stage management of the Los Angeles Opera while Mr. Russell served as the company's Technical Director. (See The Wally Russell Foundation and The Wally Award, bestowed for excellence in lighting design) Angelo J. Falanga lived and worked in Germany from 1992 to 1994, traveling throughout the continent during these years. For Mr. Stokes, Angelo J. Falanga assisted in the home studio where three albums were produced and with the booking then staging of live performances while managing Mr. Stokes' web presence, also serving as a photographer and videographer. Angelo J. Falanga now lives and works in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Where to find Angelo J. Falanga online
Studio recording of Frank A. Stokes' theme song, The Awakening, from the album Walk With Me, combined with performance footage from S.I.R. Studios, Manhattan, March 17, 2007.
Native American dance performed by Wayasti Richardson.
Video produced by Frank A. Stokes, edited by Randy Whitehead.
by Angelo J. Falanga
Frank A. Stokes (1954-2010) said "Stokesified" to describe how any sound he heard he made his own. Raised in Brooklyn NY, he saw the rock and roll shows of Alan Freed and Murray The K. Playing in the 1970's CBGB's underground, emerging after meeting Jaco Pastorius as a jazz composer on fretless bass and recording, Frank Stokes honored his Native American heritage by offering each note as a prayer.
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