If you consider the definition of "Tribute" as being an acknowledgment of respect and admiration, you can understand what has driven Turnstiles' band leader Tony Monaco to form "Turnstiles". As a young man, Tony became an inspired, lifelong fan of the Piano Man and he used that inspiration to grow as a pianist, vocalist, and songwriter. As a result, Billy's style has been forever imprinted on his musical soul, much like that of Ray Charles and many others have been imprinted on that of Billy Joel.
After years of performing with various original projects and cover bands, Tony decided to form "Stormfront", his first Billy Joel tribute back in 1993. While Stormfront played to critical aclaim in the New York Area, their career was cut short when Tony decided to relocate to South Florida. Now, some 15 years later, Tony decided to enlist some of the finest musicians in South Florida to join with him to once again pay tribute to the man he has so much respect and admiration for, Billy Joel. Never intending to be an impersonator, his focus instead is simply on the music and delivering a faithful and completely live Billy Joel experience to share with others. Turnstiles' renditions of Billy's classic songs are certain to move the casual listener as well as the hard core "Joel fan" to their feet and have them singing along with all the classics!
Piano, Lead Vocals
Tony was born into a musical family and began his musical journey at the age of 8. While he was fascinated with the piano, the guitar was a more realistic financial option. As a result, Tony studied guitar with his Father, Pat Monaco, and played it as his main instrument until the age of 13, winning both regional and national guitar competitions.
Over the years, his love for keyboards was rekindled when he fell in love with the Hammond organ which eventually led him back to his first love, the piano. He studied piano with many private teachers but credits Dave Frank (world renowned jazz pianist) for really focusing his efforts. As a result, many of his influences were jazz artists. However, when a close friend suggested he listen to more artists like Billy Joel, he reluctantly did so and to his surprise, he became enamored with the genius of Billy Joel. Billy’s piano style was one that Tony not only found inspiring, but also easier to relate what he learned from emulating Billy’s licks and listening to his lyrics to his efforts as an aspiring singer-songwriter with his own band, Thrills (As a member of Thrills, Tony did extensive recording and touring, opening for bands such as Foreigner, Quarterflash, Nick Lowe, Juice Newton, and Orleans). In the years following, Tony played with many of Long Island’s top bands and then in 1993, he formed what he believes was one of the first tributes to the piano man, “Stormfront”, which earned him an audition for the traveling production of the Broadway show, “Movin’ Out”.
Now residing in South Florida, Tony has decided to once again pay tribute to the music and man that has been such an influence in his musical life. In addition, with the formation of “Turnstiles”, he has been reunited with his life long friend and former band mate from Thrills, Dave Fullerton. Dave along with both new and old friends has now joined forces with Tony to bring this band to life for all Billy Joel fans to enjoy!
A South FL native, Paul began his musical life on guitar but quickly moved to bass when the need arose in the high school garage band circuit. When the local cover band scene came a-knocking shortly thereafter, Paul could be spotted all around town in the usual clubs and pubs, clutching his gleaming new Rickenbacker in one hand and a sack-full of wide-eyed dreams on the other. While patiently waiting for that proverbial "big break", Paul eventually found himself on the local church circuit, becoming a highly touted and in demand bassist for various houses of worship all around Broward and Palm Beach counties, a position he has enjoyed for well over a decade. When the opportunity came to nail the floorboards for one of the finest Billy Joel Tribute bands around, Paul leapt to the fore with nary an afterthought, knowing full well that the proverbial "big break" he'd long sought after had finally arrived.
Paul currently resides in the western ‘burbs of Palm Beach County with his two daughters, Kayleigh and Tarah."
Dave was born and raised in Pittsburgh Pa. and began playing Guitar at the age of 8. Shortly thereafter, he began playing in neighborhood and local bands and eventually met up with Tony Monaco. At the age of 13, they joined forces playing in various local bands together which eventually spawned into their recording and touring band, “Thrills”. Thrills relocated to New York where they toured and played nonstop for over 10 years and recorded 5 albums on the G&P label which are now available on CD (through Rewind Records).
Following the breakup of Thrills, Dave and Tony continued to work together until they both relocated to South Florida in 1995. After their relocation they did not work together for some 15 years. Needless to say, Dave was extremely excited when Tony asked him to be part of the Turnstiles Project.
In addition to the Turnstiles Band, Dave is also the musical director for the newly formed country band, “The Monique McCall Band", also based in South Florida
In April 2001, Eric signed his first recording contract as a solo artist with Neurodisc Records. Eric’s debut CD entitled, Without Words spent many weeks on the Billboard's New Age chart in 2001. His second release, Nuevo Flamenco Romancero, reached the eleventh spot of Billboard's New Age chart in May 2002 where it remained for fifteen weeks. In July 2003 Eric’s third CD entitled, Colores del Alma featured special appearances by Ed Calle and his horn section along with many other top South Florida’s studio musicians. His fourth release is a Classical Guitar tribute to the Beatles entitled, Across the Universe. His fifth release entitled, 360 Blue features an extremely talented lineup with special guest Marion Meadows on saxophone, Gary Berman on Drums, Rick Geragi on percussion and Alan Palanker on keyboards. With his upcoming sixth release (planned for late 2010) Eric returns to the Spanish guitar style putting together his favorite elements of Flamenco and Jazz to create a fresh new sound comprised of creative melodies and fiery rendition of the Eagles, “Hotel California”.
Meanwhile, it was back in 2008 while Eric was forming the band for his concert lineup (Hansenhaus) that a recommendation from their mutual friend, Rick Geragi, led to Eric enlisting Tony as the keyboardist and their friendship has matured from there. Shortly thereafter, they discovered their mutual love for Billy Joel’s music. Then, when Tony mentioned the possibility of forming Turnstiles, Eric expressed a sincere desire to be part of the project. Given Eric’s sheer virtuosity, and love for the music, it was an obvious, natural fit. Now, together with Dave Fullerton, the guitar arrangements for Turnstiles are nailed down with an authority that will surely make Billy proud.
Sax, Flute, Vocals
Born and Raised in Sunny South Florida (North West Miami /Scott Lake area...Carol City/Opa Locka Ish)
Putting out Fires By Day...Burning up the Music Scene By Night!
Multi Instrumentalist Primarily woodwinds, Started Playing Sax at 12 years old... His professional music career has spanned nearly 4 decades and has traveled him throughout the US and Abroad. When asked how long he's been playing music his reply is simply "Not Long Enough"...
Jody's Love and appreciation for the music of Billy Joel stems from back in the mid 70s when he 1st "experienced" what he considers to be one of the best song writers of our times...And now some 30 plus years later, in the company of an entire group of amazingly talented brothers who equally share in the Love of the music we are afforded the opportunity to play, you get to witness this kind of positive energy in every breath he takes as he takes his part in Turnstiles...In Jody's own words..."Each performance provides another opportunity to take it to the next level"... Watch out, Life is short...ROCK ON !!!
Since the age of 2, Jeff McDonald has had a passion for the drums, and or anything he could hit that would make sound. By the time he left high school, Jeff had studied with renowned teacher Joe Pulice, and had played with several drum and bugle corps, and marching bands including the Kilties, and Lighthouse Brigade.
Teaching for Horst’s music in Racine, WI. Jeff met Rex Merriweather, and soon became the drummer for R.E.X., an all-original horn band influenced by Chase, Tower of Power, and Chicago. This gave him the opportunity to open for artist such as Robert Cray, Chubby Checker, and several other artists. Soon after playing with Merriweather, Jeff got involved in the glam rock screen playing with Lyden Moon, and opening shows for Enuff-Znuff.
Shortly after moving to Florida in 1994, Jeff met members of the Truth, an industrial metal band influenced by Dream Theatre, Journey, and Deep Purple. Releasing “Believe” later that year, the Truth attracted the attention of Kansas band leader Steve Walsh, which led to an opening slot for the band. It was during this time that Jeff met Tony Monaco. They became instant friends, and have performed together in several bands over the past decade and a half. “It’s not very often that someone comes along in your life that influences you musically like Tony has for me. His drive and attention to every detail is what make playing music with him so rewarding.” Currently playing with Tony in Shakedown as well as having a genuine desire to be part of this project made Jeff the obvious choice for the slot in Turnstiles…….and the rest WILL be history!
Keyboards, Guitar, Vocals
Soon after graduating Berklee College of Music in Boston , Greg earned himself a place as a mainstay in the South Florida Club scene and as a sought after session player in Central and South Florida. Besides anchoring local bands such as “Foolproof” and “Back in Time”, Greg has performed with rock legends such as Tommy Roe, The Shirelles, and The Chiffons. He has also performed in the pit orchestras for the stage productions of "Grease", “They're Playing Our Song”, "Over There", and "The Boyfriend". Recently, Greg toured with Nashville Recording Artist, Tom Jackson, where he had the pleasure of opening for stars such as Jake Owen and Craig Morgan. In addition, Greg has recently completed recording an album of his own original material.
Now as the Keyboardist for Turnstiles, Greg provides the perfect compliment to Tony’s piano with faithful orchestrations and effects, adding just the right touch of ornaments to their sound.
If you're a Billy Joel fan, you're ALREADY a Turnstiles fan...
If you aren't already a Billy Joel fan, Turnstiles promises to make you one!!!!