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Anthony Dowd

Born in Richmond, Va in 1957, Anthony started playing piano by ear at age six. Much of what he heard on television was figured out on the piano, but he did begin formal lessons at age 12 and studied for about five years. When he was in high school he came across his parent's big band records and that got him hooked on swing and looking for more jazz piano. A few weeks after graduating Benedictine High School, Anthony got a job playing piano with a local big band, The Kings Of Swing, at Kings Dominion Amusement Park. That led to jobs with Busch Gardens and Carnival Cruise Lines. In the early 80s' Anthony moved to Hartford, CT and honed his solo piano skills at local restaurants, modeling his playing after pianist Dave McKenna. Upon returning to Richmond in 1985 the job of leading the house trio at Benjamin's Restaurant became his, and his trio stayed there until 1992. In 1994, while playing at the Jefferson Hotel, he hit a high point. Frank Sinatra was in town for some concerts, and after finishing his dinner, joined Anthony at the piano and sang a few tunes. After some playing in the mid-Atlantic region, (Andrew White, Clark Terry) he took a break from playing piano, moved to Tennessee and spent time raising his daughter Sarah. Anthony returned to Virginia in 2003 and found his reputation as an all-around pianist as strong as ever. His style, a mix of the bluesiness of Oscar Peterson, with a touch of Bill Evans, may seem like a contradiction, but he makes it work. Anthony's first CD as a leader, “Can't Sleep” is set to be released in 2009. He is featured on bassist Jason Jenkin's CD's and with Roger Carroll on their duet CD from Spring of 2008. He can also be heard on the Children's Miracle Network CDs of 2004 and 2005.

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”Anthony Dowd is the constant, playing accompanist, soloist and leader. He is adept at all these roles.”

Richmond Review July 1988

“Frank Sinatra may remember Richmond as more than just that darned fool place that can't find decent air conditioning. At his request, pianist Anthony Dowd played until 1 a.m. so the Sinatra party could wind down with after-dinner drinks. Sinatra even sang a few.”

Richmond Times-Dispatch March 10, 1994

Primary Instrument

Piano

Willing to teach

Advanced only

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