Grammy Winner - Philadelphia-born Keyboardist. Composer. Conductor. Songwriter. Producer and Arranger
Sweetest Pain - Pause/Play
Dexter Wansel at his recent concert Jazz Café London
The Sounds of Philadelphia has many stories, this is just one of them.
R+B/fusion arranger, musician, composer, conductor, synthesist, A+R Director, Dexter Wansel, began as an errand boy backstage at the uptown theater in Philadelphia from 1959 through 1963. There he met many great artists who encouraged him to pursue music. In junior high school and high school he and his best friend Stanley Clarke had their first bands together.
In 1970 after being honorably discharged from the United States Army, Wansel quietly joined the ranks of great synthesists like Walter Carlos and Dick Hyman, where he began programming the Putney and the Arp 2600V for sessions at Sigma Sound Studios both credited and uncredited. Going to early 70s, Wansel also played keyboards for groups such as instant funk, yellow sunshine, and MFSB. In 1975 Dexter created the moody, space- soul LP ‘Life On Mars’ whose icy ambience and thick, thematic funk is universally credited with having created Neo-Soul...
Dexter Wansel - Discography
Dexter Wansel - Interview
Dexter Wansel - Book Shortwave
Dexter Wansel - Videos
Keyboardist/arranger/producer/recording artist Dexter Wansel can be heard throughout the catalog of Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff's Philadelphia International Records. His skills can be heard on non-PIR sides like Jermaine Jackson's "Where Are You Now" from his gold LP Let's Get Serious and "Tonight" from Junior's Acquired Taste LP. His frequent songwriting partners were Cynthia Biggs, Bunny Sigler, and T. Life. A synth pioneer, Wansel's first LP arranging assignment was several tracks on Carl Carlton's 1975 LP, I Wanna Be With You, produced by Bunny Sigler. A Biggs/Wansel song, "The Sweetest Pain," a duet between Wansel and Jean Carn, originally a 1979 single from Wansel's Time Is Slipping Away LP, was a popular radio-aired LP from Loose Ends' Zagora LP. Two of Carn's LPs, When I Find You Love (entirely produced by Wansel) and Sweet and Wonderful, and Jean Carn and Happy to Be With You were issued on a two-album single CD by U.K. label Westside Records in early 1999.
Sounds of Philadelphia The Jacksons The Stylistics Patrice Rushen The O'Jays Phyllis Hyman The Jones Girls Archie Bell and the Drells' Evelyn "Champagne" King's Teddy Pendergrass Michael Jackson MFSB Grover Washington Jr Jean Carn Pattie Labelle George Benson Billy Paul Cynthia Biggs Lou Rawls McFadden & Whitehead Marilyn Ashford-Brown Dexter Wansel Life on Mars Dexter Wansel The Sweetest Pain