Robert Walter's 20th Congress
Robert Walter performs all his own stunts. For 20 years, the San Diego native has been pulling drawbars and pushing the limits of the Hammond B3 organ. Walter helped form the the Greyboy Allstars in 1993 with Karl Denson, Elgin Park, Chris Stillwell, Zak Najor, and DJ Greyboy. Influenced by soul-jazz and funk records from the 1960s and 70s, the band juxtaposed jazz improvisation and dance music. They continue to record and perform to a committed fan base. The Greyboy Allstars also served as the band for Robert’s first solo record, Spirit of ’70 which also featured saxophonist and Miles Davis sideman Gary Bartz.
In the late 1990’s Walter started his own group Robert Walter’s 20th Congress to showcase his composing. The band became known for its live performances and toured throughout the 90’s and 2000’s. They recorded three albums Health and Fitness, Money Shot and Giving Up the Ghost. Band members included Cochemea Gastelum (Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings), Stanton Moore (Galactic), Joe Russo (Furthur and Benevento-Russo Duo), George Sluppick (Mofro and Chris Robinson Brotherhood), Mike Fratantuno (Black-eyed Peas), Chuck Prada and Will Bernard. During this period Robert also recorded There Goes the Neighborhood with jazz-funk pioneers Harvey Mason, Chuck Rainey, Phil Upchurch and Red Holloway.
Walter relocated to New Orleans in 2004 and became immersed the vibrant local music scene. He began collaborating with Johnny Vidacovich, Stanton Moore, James Singleton, George Porter Jr and many more. While in New Orleans he recorded Super Heavy Organ and Cure All as well as albums with Stanton Moore (III, Emphasis on Parenthesis and Groove Alchemy) and Anders Osborne (American Patchwork). After Katrina Walter relocated back west to Los Angeles where he currently works on film music with composer Michael Andrews.
In Spring of 2013, the Greyboy Allstars return to the road with Inland Emperor, their first album since 2007’s What Happened to Television?, but the recent move from New Orleans to Los Angeles has also jump-started Robert Walter’s 20th Congress, an outlet for the keyboardist’s funkiest material since its inception in 1999. Robert Walter's most recent release Get Thy Bearings pushes Walter’s organ, piano, Rhodes and synthesizer to the front of a group rounded out by guitarist/bassist Elgin Park, drummer Aaron Redfield, sax players Karl Denson and Cochemea Gastelum, and percussionist Chuck Prada—an all-star lineup in its own right. Recorded in just a few takes at Elgonix Labs—the same studio where Walter has lent his skills to Get Thy Bearings producer Michael Andrews film scores and productions—the album is full of raw boogaloo energy and cinematic color.