It's dusk, it's cool, and the stadium lights are on. About 50,000 concert-goers are singing a song back to Adam Fallon, the headline act. This is Fallon's ultimate musical goal. Based on the rapid growth of his audience throughout North America and his new EP, Slightly Used, hitting the market in 2006, he could achieve it very soon. From his base in Chicago, Fallon is building a following throughout the Midwest, Ontario and across the continent. Audiences are opening up to his style: his own unique take on the tradition of singer/songwriter, but with an intangible quality that makes listener feel that, deep down, he knows what they are feeling. Fallon moves effortlessly from ballads to upbeat pop to full-out rock. The 26-year-old Canadian singer and songwriter has been, at various times, a performer, producer, promoter, and roadie. Fallon is something of a local legend around Belleville, Ontario, where he pulled up to an A&W --former band Pickseed aboard a flatbed truck-and drew 300 people for an impromptu concert. It may be his knack for producing and promoting that keeps him so connected to what his fans expect. "The typical person at my show tends to be laid back, casual and looking for good live entertainment," Fallon says. "They just want to close their eyes, listen to the story, and be carried away." He's been there himself: Fallon learned at an early age that music could take him away from problems at home and school. He started with clarinet at age 12; and really developed a deep appreciation for music at age 14, when he got his first drum set. "I'd go into the garage four hours a night," he says, "and just put on a CD and headphones and play along." He credits those early sessions with Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins, and Foo Fighters with honing his skills and helping him feel good about himself. (He also includes Led Zepplin, The Beatles, The Who, the Matthew Good Band, Our Lady Peace and the Tragically Hip among his influences.) As he finished high school and pursued a degree in radio broadcasting at Loyalist College, his songwriting style crystallized. Fallon considers himself a free-association writer. "The majority of my songs are written off cuff," he says. "I get an idea in my head and then put the pen to the paper and just start writing, because if I think about what I want to say, I overthink and censor myself." Many of his songs spring from experiences with his wife, Kim, who has a profound influence on his art-she's his Muse, you could say. Fallon credits her with keeping his creativity on track. "She's not afraid to tell me if something stinks or needs to be better or if it's perfect," he says. "I can sometimes come up with an idea that I've played before; she has a great memory and will step in very quickly to let me know that I'm re-using stuff that I've already done." Despite his extensive musical experience, Fallon understands the power of collaboration. His five-year co-writing relationship with guitarist Kyle Defreitas, whom he considers a "guitar genius," is a good example "After developing the original idea for a song-the lyrics and basic musical structure-Kyle and I work on the progression and harmonies and then build the song from there," says Fallon. "Two songs on the new EP, "Someday" and "Ignored," are examples of what we can do together." When the new EP, Slightly Used, is released on NYOC Records this year, it will be Fallon's fourth recording. He recorded a 3-song solo EP with Defreitas in March 2002 titled The Power of the Voice of One Vol. 1; followed that up with a full-length album with his former band, Pickseed; then re-teamed with Defreitas for The Power of the Voice of One Vol. 2. Scott Juba of the-trades.com said Vol. 2 "demonstrates his tremendous versatility as an artist and proves why he is beginning to earn radio airplay in select US and Canadian markets." Back to the stadium: the song is over, the crowd is roaring, and Adam Fallon let's the sound wash over him. Big dream? Sure. But this artist, who backs up the dream with talent, enthusiasm and a relentless drive to succeed, will soon be stepping onto a larger stage.
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