Ambrosia

Ambrosia

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Biography

Ambrosia is a rock band form southern California that formed in 1970 when founding members David Peck on guitar and vocals, and bassist Joe Puerta connected with keyboardist Christopher North, and drummer Burleigh Drummond. The band had a number of successful hit singles during the 1970s, with their style of music heavily influenced by bands such as The Beach Boys, Crosby Stills Nash & Young, King Crimson, and The Beatles. Ambrosia combined symphonic art rock with a finely tuned pop sound.

In the early 1970s the band attended shows at the Hollywood Bowl by the Los Angeles Philharmonic. There they were introduced to conductor Zubin Mehta, who then asked to use Ambrosia as part his “All-American Dream Concert.” This lucky break enabled the band to be exposed to large audiences. The band later signed with 20th Century Fox Records after a few years of playing shows in and around Hollywood.

Ambrosia's self-titled debut album was released in 1975 and spawned the hit singles: “Holdin' On To Yesterday” and “Nice, Nice, Very Nice.” The album earned the band a Grammy Award nomination for 'Best Engineered Recording' (other than Classical). The band embarked on a tour for the next year, returning in 1976 with their second offering, “Somewhere I've Never Travelled.” The album yielded the hit single “Can't Let A Woman,” which featured orchestral sounds and vocal arrangements, earning the band another Grammy Award nomination, which resulted in a record deal from Warner Bros. Records.

The band's third offering, “Life Beyond L.A.” emerged in 1978 and departed from the band's typical sound and moved more towards a progressive rock/jazz sound. North, who was not happy with the band's musical shift, left the band in 1977 while recording the album. 1978 also marked the band's cross over to the pop market and a hit single with, “How Much I Feel” peaking at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart. The band then embarked on an extensive tour with Fleetwood Mac, Heart, and the Doobie Brothers. By this point in their career the band had amassed a large and loyal following and had built a reputation as must see live act. North returned to the band later that year for the tour and the band expanded with the addition of another keyboardist, David C. Lewis, and an additional singer, Royce Jones.

1980 saw the band's fourth studio album “One Eighty” appear with more international hit singles and three more Grammy Award nominations. A headlining world tour followed. 1982 marked Ambrosia's fifth and final studio album, “Road Island,” which was a commercial disappointment. The band decided to part ways after their failed album with David Pack pursuing a solo career and working as a music producer for a number of bands.

1989 marked the return of Ambrosia with all four original members. The band began playing live shows again, and touring with the addition of Tollak Ollestad on keyboards, vocals, and harmonica, and Shem Von Schroeck on percussion and bass. Over the next ten years the band would experience a number of line-up changes but continued to tour. Pack finally left the band in 2001 and was replaced by Doug Jackson. That same year the band recorded a live album, “Live,” which was released 2002 and a compilation album, “How Much I Feel and Other Hits” followed in 2003. The band continued to release compilation and live albums over the next few years.

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