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Country USA

Style AOR
It all started when childhood friends Adam Holland and Gerard Zappa began playing in various bands back in high school. Graduating to the Long Island club circuit along with Neil Christopher on drums, they always had a strong focus on writing, recording and performing original material. This led them to talented writer keyboard player Craig Pullman. Always looking for that certain special voice, their path eventually led them to Hugo. Valentine was formed.

With a brief move to LA; major management, label and publishing deals soon followed. With the demos recorded by producer Neil Kernon, (Hall and Oates, The Romantics, Dokken) Valentine was signed to Columbia Records. They soon went into the studio to record their first CD. Soon after the recording was completed, personnel changes at Columbia forced the band off of the label before it’s release. Fortunately their A&R person moved to Giant Records taking Valentine with him. The band finally released their debut CD in late 1990 and the MTV video for “No Way”, featuring Aly Sheedy.

Valentine also wrote and performed songs for the movie “Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter Is Dead” Starring Christina Applegate. After many issues with Giant Records and personnel changes within the group, the band reformed as Open Skyz. After almost a solid year of writing without a label, a new deal with RCA/Zito soon followed. With much relief, the band headed back to LA, into the studio with producers Ritchie Zito (Eddie Money, Cheap Trick, Heart, Cher) and Rob Jacobs. (Don Henley, The Eagles, U2) This CD provided several singles, including the top 20 AOR single “Every Day Of My Life”.

Adding Tom Maio on drums, the band headed out on tour opening for Mr. Big and Kiss. Once n Weary after almost a decade of music industry ups and downs, jumping from label to label to label, the members of Open Skyz went their separate ways. Hugo went on to record three critically acclaimed solo records (please add info), Adam headed down to Nashville as a writer with Murrah Music, Gerard became involved in the management side of the business and Craig continued writing with various collaborators. (including Adam & Hugo) Although the group always remained close friends and would write and perform together in various combinations, there was never an official Valentine/Open Skyz reunion.

Until now that is. With an invitation to play at Firefest IV, Valentine officially reunited bringing Evolution drummer Mike Morales along on drums. The response at Firefest was so fantastic, it has inspirited the guys to go back and record new material for a 2008 release. After returning from the Firefest UK show, keyboard player, writer and archivist, Craig Pullman disclosed an amazing discovery to the rest of the band. He uncovered all of the completed Valentine demos that were going to be used for the second CD. As the band progressed into Open Skyz and changed musical directions, these songs were never recorded. A few of these songs did make it onto Hugo’s early solo CDs – “Crazy” , Find A Way” and “If You’re Ever Lonely”. The band has also decided to re record the classic ballad “Never Said It Was Going To Be Easy” from the original Valentine CD. According to guitarist Adam Holland “ This song was always one of our favorites.

Somehow in 2008 it has taken on a totally different bluesy feel. We are all excited about it and looking forward to recording the new version”. Well there you have it. A new album Soul Salvation release date Nov 2008. 

– Valentine [1990]
– Soul Salvation [2008]

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VALENTINE, 7.5 out of 10 based on 32 ratings
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