Inspired by the sounds of 60s and 70s, Wiser Time serves up a dose of classic Rock N Roll in a way that few bands have been able to do. Frontman Carmen Sclafani combines his soulful vocals and guitar feel in such a way that takes you back to a time when Jimmys and Jaggers roamed the stages. Combine that with drummer Steve Decker and bassist Todd Lanka, and you have a perfect blend of sounds that makes you think of Led Zeppelin to The Band, and everything in between.
Wiser Time originated in the small town of Millington, NJ by singer/songwriter/guitarist, Carmen Sclafani in the spring of 2002.
Sclafani had been a fixture in the local music scene, performing in bars and clubs during the evenings, while working as a commercial artist during the days. He had been performing with various incarnations under the Wiser Time moniker when he came across music veteran/producer/guitarist, Anthony Krizan (Spin Doctors, Lenny Kravitz, John Waite), performing at a local club. The two had shared a similar interest in the classic Rock and Roll sounds of 60s and 70s bands like Led Zeppelin and Aerosmith, and shortly after meeting began recording songs from Sclafani's catalog and writing material that would eventually become the self-produced 5-song EP titled, Introducing Wiser Time. The EP was received well by audiences, and local radio stations began playing it. Sclafani continued performing regularly in NY and NJ during this time while he and Krizan continued to record and write more material, while also bringing in various other studio musicians and friends for certain recordings.
Sclafani eventually brought in John Hummel, a seasoned studio drummer who was a member of several local bands including The John Ginty Band, featuring John Ginty (Robert Randolph, Santana, Citizen Cope). His powerful style, combined with the Keith Richards/Jimmy Page stylings that both Krizan and Sclafani had both been heavily influenced by, produced a vintage style and sound that hadn't been heard or seen in mainstream music in years.
The trio would eventually be rounded out as a 4-piece with the addition of Todd Lanka on bass. Lanka had also been a well known and highly regarded musician in the local scene, and had performed with a number of acts including Todd Wolfe (Sheryl Crow, Leslie West).
Wiser Time began playing select shows, adding various organ players for live performances, while completing the final few recordings of the debut album, There And Back Again, in the fall of 2006. The response by audiences was immediate, and word began spreading quickly about the bands vintage rock and roll swagger and charismatic frontman.
While preparing for a 2007 push for There And Back Again, Sclafani met drummer Steve Decker, who had been a close friend of Lanka. Decker was an incredibly versatile drummer, combining both power and finesse to create a very musical groove. His soulful and steady groove had been behind such recordings and performances from Rock and Roll Hall of Fame keyboardist Bernie Worrell (P-Funk, The Talking Heads), and Grammy Award-winning and Blues Hall of Fame's James Cotton (Muddy Waters), to name a few.
The trio of Sclafani, Decker and Lanka began playing and writing regularly, and connected on all levels, even going so far as to create and jam new songs right on the spot at live gigs, to the amazement of audiences. With the three being so connected to the music, Sclafani decided to make it the core of Wiser Time in place of the hired studio musicians that he'd been using to that point. The trio would continue to bring in Krizan and various other musicians on certain gigs and recording sessions.
With the line-up and the album complete and local buzz spreading quickly, the band is attracting a great deal of attention and is focused on touring in 2007 to promote the debut album.
- by Rachel Irimescu
CS - YES.....everwhere LOL, but mostly east coast at the moment. There's no better feeling than playing live.....that's why you do it. One particular moment was when we were rehearsing. We had just wrapped up and decided to jam, and we just locked in with each other. I just stepped up to the mic and started singing, and we wrote the tune right there on the spot in a matter of minutes. Very special moment that we just pulled from the air. We call it "Free."
CS - They're very broad, but here's a few: The Stones, Zeppelin, Humble Pie, Free, Dylan, The Band, Ray Charles, early blues....I could go on and on.
CS - Many different amps and guitars, but for live gigs it's usually:
- Marshall JTM45 Head
- Marshal JCM Lead-1960
- Gibson 60's Custom
- Gibson Artist RD
- Fender 52 Tele
- Custom built Fender Strat
- Gibson SBJ200 Acoustic
- Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer
- Ibanez TS808 Tube Screamer
- Vox Wah
- Memory Man Delay