As a jazz vocalist, Adam moved from life as a media lawyer in London in 2006 to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Over the next 5 years, his life as a composer flourished, working closely with some of the great 1960s Bossa Nova composers and Carioca artists in Rio. In 2009 he recorded many of his own compositions in his album Sunset Monkeys in Jardim Botanico, a small borough of Rio on the edge of Rio’s great Tijuca Rainforest. He collaborated his songwriting with the 60’s renowned Bossa Nova pioneers, Roberto Menescal, Joao Donato, Lysias Enio, and Carlos Lyra, and wrote the first-ever English versions of some of Brazil’s Bossa classics. He recorded the first-ever English version of Lyra’s “Voce e Eu”, as well as writing the first ever English versions to Menescal’s “Nos e o Mar” (“We and the Sea”), and Donato / Enio’s “Flor do Mato” (“Jungle Flower”), their classic “Amazonas” (“The Amazonas”), and more. He also wrote the first ever French version of the Gershwin classic “‘S Wonderful” with co-writer Manuel Guignard in Paris, the version subsequently approved by Warner Bros LA. In the “Monkeys” recordings, the original Bossa greats joined Adam as special guests on the new English versions of their own songs.
Sunset Monkeys was released in November 2010, and has especially been successful in Japan, Turkey, Australia and Western Europe. The title track “Sunset Monkeys” includes the voice of world renowned environmentalist David Suzuki, the dramatic “Green” shakes the world’s conscience, and songs “Leblon” and “Mount Eliza” pay homage to his respective Brazilian and Australian homes.Singing in Portuguese, English, and Italian, he has recorded duets with great contemporary artists between Australia and Brazil including Cris Delanno, Bossacucanova’s Alex Moreira and Rodrigo Sha, Barbara Mendes, Tash Parker, Daniela Procopio, David Feldman, Rafael Barata, Eugenio Dale, and many others.
Dunning’s second album “Glass Bottom Boat” was also recorded in Rio with Bossa’s great pioneers, including Roberto Menescal, Joao Donato, as well as other prominent exponents, Barbara Mendes, Cris Delanno / Alex Moreira (Bossacucanova), Bossa exponent Ronaldo Cotrim, drummer Rafael Barata (Eliane Elias), and bassist Gastao Villeroy (Milton Nascimento) to name a few. His summery tone appeals to humanity’s conscience, imagining a world where humanity co-exists in harmony with nature where the moon, oceans, romance, and eroticism are all naturally interlinked characters. His tracks include Dunning’s first English version of “Amazonas” (Donato/Enio), and his “Happy New Year” – written as a get well card to Japan after the 2011 earthquake which Dunning himself was caught in.
In 2013 Dunning released a new single with Tash Parker, which married folk with his surf jazz feel, in a “Holiday” waltz which has been responsible for bringing nostalgia back into the mainstream.Adam’s music has been featured on radio stations worldwide including Martini In The Morning Radio (LA), JOY FM (Istanbul), BBC Wales (UK), RTVE Siglo 21 Radio 3 (Spain), KCRW (LA), Bossa Nova Breakfast (US), ABC Radio National – “Inside Sleeve” (Australia-wide), FM Cocolo (Japan), Byron Bay FM (Aust), KLCBS The Jazz Wave (Indonesia), 5MBS (Australia), PBS FM “Switched On” (Aust), Jazz Radio Network (Seattle), RRR FM “The Village” (Aust) RRR FM “Banana Lounge Broadcasting” (Aust), Shonan Beach FM (Japan), JOY FM (Aust), to name just a few. He was featured in Japan’s widely circulated “Music Magazine”, alongside Ben Folds Five and Pet Shop Boys. Other press coverage includes Jornal do Orla (Brazil), Music Magazine (Japan), Herald Sun (Australia).
He cites his musical influences as Eurmir Deodato, Roberto Menescal, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Michael Franks, Azymuth, David Byrne. Living Leblon, a small part of Rio bordering Ipanema Beach, Adam has earned the name “Australioca” – the blood of an Australian / the soul of the Carioca.
This is different music. I attempt to translate the not often acknowledged idea that we are but one of many species on earth, and our need to respect this. The music is there to make you feel happy, empathetic, and to provoke thought. Most of all, it’s about lying back and being at one with the music and the nature that it can fit to. Often best when on a beach watching waves. Thank you for accepting this different and almost new genre which I am only but one of those responsible.