29 May 2020

New Age Vocal Review: Prem Vidu-Encounter – Medicine Songs from Ma

Release Date:  June 4, 2020
Label: Independent
Website

Prim Vidu and his newest offering Encounter – Medicine Songs from Ma was a pleasant surprise for my new age tastes. Normally the vocals I hear on releases are some background embellishments. This however is all vocals with the traditional instrumentation you would come to expect from a new age release.

I had no idea what I was in for with this album, I just trusted that Prem was a new age artist looking for an opinion on his music. Well he asked the right person and everything does happen for a reason. This is Prem’s first release and everything was composed and performed by him and his team. Besides singing he plays a multitude of instruments. It is quite impressive as this album is his first and an independent release. This is about belief in your life, love, gratitude and the pureness of one enlightened soul.

Some of the instruments used are nylon guitar, shakers, kit acoustic guitars, electric guitars, mandolin, piano, synths, fretless bass, flugelhorn and trumpet. And that is the short list!

To create an album with all vocals and to have that new age color, depth, and meaning, you need all the right instruments. Based on what I heard, things were done properly and Prem and his fine team of musicians pulled out all the stops and present one beautiful recording.

The one and most important instrument is Prem’s vocals. I found an immediate attraction to his warmth and flowing vocalizations. The lyrics are from the heart and soul of a man that has found his true path through the music and spirituality. Prem says “"There is no shorter umbilical to your soul than singing!" How that rings so true for me and I am sure countless others that will enjoy Encounter – Medicine Songs from Ma.

At this particular moment in time I feeling some back pain and, in the music, and words of Encounter – Medicine Songs from Ma I found comfort and healing sounds. Although I must admit some of the lyrics are not understood because they are not in English, however that did not matter. Prem’s voice is so inviting and smooth that you just go with all the flow. The instrumentation is certainly quite excellent, which helps to get you at your comfort zone.

There is plenty of variety musically which keeps your interest besides the digging down deep lyrics presented on this amazing group of tracks. Anyone that can appreciate our humanity, spirituality, a variety of instruments, and incredible vocals, well, that about says it all doesn’t it. This is thoughtful words set to a magnificent array of instrumentation! You need to hear Encounter – Medicine Songs from Ma.

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
May 27, 2020


Track List:
 1. Holy Divine Mother
2. May I Have The Strength
3. Cancel The Show
4. Oh Your Glory
5. Mighty Presence
6. Floating
7. Your Love Heals Me
8. Everything That Is Here

 


Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

28 May 2020

Modern Rock Icon MATTHEW SWEET Joins Classic Rock Legends BADFINGER For A New Version Of "Baby Blue!"


Los Angeles, CA - One of the rock world’s biggest stars is set to appear on a brand new 2020 update of the timeless classic “Baby Blue.” Matthew Sweet, best known for his 1991 smash hit album and single “Girlfriend,” joined the members of Welsh rock band Badfinger for a thrilling new take on the 1971 Pete Ham-penned tune that originally appeared on Badfinger’s Straight Up album. The band’s guitarist and vocalist at the time, Joey Molland, continues as the only surviving member of the original line-up today! “Baby Blue” was a huge hit at the time of its release but has since skyrocketed in popularity again thanks to its use in the series finale of Breaking Bad. This new version finds Sweet adding his bold creative energy which fuses nicely with Molland & Co.’s experienced musicianship. Fans are in for a real treat with this fantastic recording!

Stream the single: https://orcd.co/badfinger_matthew_sweet_baby_blue

Press inquiries: 
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PH: 828-350-8158
glassonyonpr@gmail.com


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27 May 2020

Rock Review: Airborne Toxic Event - Hollywood Park

Release Date: May 22, 2020
Label: Rounder Records


Being a sucker for what I'll coin as Literary Rock, I eagerly anticipated this latest Airborne Toxic Event release, Hollywood Park. The album is a soundtrack to founder Mikel Jollett's recently released memoir focusing on his experiences growing up in an infamous cult and subjected to a childhood filled with poverty, addiction, and emotional abuse. If the book is as powerful as the soundtrack, we're in for a great read.
It's worth noting that the band takes its name from a 1985 postmodern novel called White Noise, which centers around a chemical spill that forces the citizens to face their mortality and learn to appreciate the beauty of the natural world around them. 


The sonic experience involves a back-and-forth between propulsive anthems and subtle, evocative piano ballads. "Come on Out" is one of the album's real treasures. With a driving rhythm and deep, resonant vocals, it captures the thrill and angst of youth, all the while steering the listener boldly toward a new future.

As the album progresses, the songs slowly become stripped of their production and presumption. They become more personal. "The Common Touch" features Jollett in a folksy singsong number, which feels as if he's about to lighten the mood and then heads in a different direction.

With our heads soaked up in alcohol, one hand on a cigarette. I swear I still got some good moves left. I've been fifty-eight since I was twenty-three. I got sixty-nine problems but one ain't me.

In addition to "Come on Out," the standout track to me is "All These Engagements." The lyrics are rife with veiled allusions of deep and dark childhood trauma, which has followed the protagonist has carried with him all his life. It starts slow as a remembrance and rolls along forcefully building toward an ultimate crescendo of rage. "Common Touch" adds a folksy singalong number to the equation to lighten the mood.  

All in all, The longing, anger, and regret are palpable on Hollywood Park. Yet after a close listen, one feels a sense of earned wisdom, a that which does not kill me makes me stronger feeling. What Airborne Toxic Event delivers is a powerful collection of songs that blends rock music with a well-told coming of age story. The result is a highly gratifying listening experience.  

- Tom Endyke | Guitar & Pen | www.tomendyke.com




25 May 2020

Contemporary Instrumental Review: Masako-Hidden Flowers

Release Date: May, 25, 2020
Label: Independent
I appreciate having a history with an artist, especially one that I can fully appreciate. This is the third Masako recording I have had the honor of covering.

Before the latest Hidden Flowers, I can reach back to 2017 with Piano Sanctuary and to 2019
with Underwater Whisperer.Knowing how much I enjoyed the previous of this talented piano player, it was just a matter of letting the music play. Then once it begins the process of it melting into my soul comes easy and naturally.

Hidden Flowers has twelve tracks of Masako leading the way with her flowing and concise piano style. Once again, the chemistry of recording at Will Ackerman’s studio comes through with the artist going from strength to strength. All production was by Ackerman, Tom Eaton, and Masako.

I think what I always admire the most with Masako is that she handles each composition as an individual piece of art. And even though the approach is that singularly focused, it comes together as one cohesive recording.
 
Tracks like “Observing M31” are light and airy featuring some lovely vocals and some rolling rhythmic piano playing along with some EWI from Premik Russell Tubbs (it sounds like a nice woodwind flute) to give it that extra layer of spice and texture. It is one of the many stand out tracks you will hear on Hidden Flowers.

Then with tracks like “Southbound Flyway,” which are filled with colorful and lively rhythms, which endeavor then succeed to paint a picture. Then you have Jeff Oster’s flugelhorn enhancing the mix to help create that scenery within the mind’s eye. It is undoubtedly the piano that always leads the way however the additional instruments make the tracks more whole and adventurous for potential listeners.

Tracks of beauty are perfected through the ivory keys and presented beautifully on Hidden Flowers. I think the title of the recording my suggest that flowers are hidden within in each song for you, the individual listener, to discover. I stopped to smell their fragrance and elegance once again through the talented fingers of Masako.


Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck
May 18, 2020

Track List:

01.  Harajuku Memoir
02.  Age of Flowers
03.  Acadia
04.  Remember the Rainy Day
05.  Blossom River
06.  Observing M31
07.  Forgiving
08.  Eternal Bliss
09.  Southbound Flyway
10. Suddenly Cherry Blossoms
11.  Winter People
12. Central Park Retreat 


Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

24 May 2020

Singer/Songwriter Review: Peppino D’Agostino -Connexion

Release Date: April 03, 2020
Label: Peppino D’Agostino Music

Peppino D’Agostino, an Italian-born guitarist, with more than 40 years under his belt. Having left Italy, more than 30 years ago, he has revolutionized the works of the guitar. He mastered the technique of fingerpicking and as such has been labeled, “a giant of the acoustic guitar.” With no sign of slowing down, having toured over 30 countries so far, and each work D’Agostino releases being an upgrade from the last; this guitar-guru-turned-instructor can do almost anything when it comes to music. Connexion is his most recent release.

As though you are walking through villas of Italy themselves, Connexion wakes up with a smooth, sultry sound that gently caresses the listener’s ear bringing them to a place of pure happiness and is sure to place a smile upon their face. The incremental triple or quadruple strumming sets offer hints of excitement on the opening track “High Plains Guitarra.” The constant back and forth. Between tremendous eventful highs and build-ups, and few but sudden, melodic and mellow lows, the artist entices the listener for what’s to come.

Coming off the highs of “High Plains Guitarra,” “Dancing with Shadows” is perfect somber ear-play to trick the listener not to expect the same result from every track. With the very short, but playful back-and-forth of the song, it is a relaxing piece that makes D’Agostino look like he was trying to weave a musical web.”Head Case,” with its more staccato-like structure is a fun, quick piece in which the artist plays with the listener. “Buster” is more complex. The song is layered in such a way that it has hints of a dark brooding sound while trying to come to a struggling resolution.

“Mara’s Sleeping Song,”  (if not for the title alone), is a lullaby that makes peace with the listener. Amid the song, the guitar transforms somewhat into a heightened cry for peace as the musician climbs a white, cloud-covered staircase. “Mexican Sunrises,” continue that calm and serene sounding tone. D’Agostino is capable, in a way, to cause the mind to drift off into such a place. “Liam’s Song” is hard to describe. It starts off very melodramatic and mysterious, and yet by the end, it is finishing off at a rushed, stimulating tempo, only to fall back to an eery ending.

“Stammi Vicino” translates to “Stay Close to Me.” It plays a love song that only wishes to keep on playing into eternity. The song plays like a longing calling card for one’s partner to remain side by side, to complete all of the goodness within his or her life (depending on if this is personal to the musician himself or written from a friend or onlooker’s perspective). “Jenny’s Goodbyes” with its carrying constant one-note undertone, offers a simple yet appealing lead-up to the final number. With only a minute and a quarter, the final track “Beauty in the Abyss” is an alluring ending to an album that offers up so many twists and turns with only a guitar at the helm.

Who could’ve guessed an acoustic guitar could wield so much power. Well, Peppino D’Agostino captivates emotion to its core, exploring all avenues of depth and rhythm within the confines of possibly an amp or not and just one sole instrument. When you combine Connexion with his masterful, musical history, Peppino D’Agostino is hard to overlook.

Gregg Keniston- MuzikMan.net Staff
May 22, 2020

Track Listing:
1. She Was Young
2. Falling Grace
3. Porsmouth Figurations
4. Awful Coffee
5. Eiderdown
6. Hullo Bolinas
7. Away
8. In F
9. Radio


22 May 2020

Blues Meets Pop As British Blues Rock Guitar Phenom CHANTEL MCGREGOR Shares Her Cover Of LADY GAGA’s "STUPID LOVE!"


Los Angeles, CA - Like pop sensation Lady Gaga, Chantel McGregor has had to fight twice as hard as her male peers for the respect she deserves. A female blues guitar prodigy who has been performing since the age of 12, McGregor has been dismissed by major label reps as having a “great voice, but girls don’t play guitar like that.” Well, this one does, and she’s teamed with indie giant Cleopatra Records to release her new studio single, a superb reworking of Lady Gaga’s latest hit “Stupid Love.” McGregor’s version adds a wholly modern blues rock take on the keyboard driven pop song, finding the common heart between her style of music and Gaga’s all while offering up smoking hot riff after smoking hot riff between the choruses.

McGregor shares her thoughts on the song saying, “I've loved Lady Gaga’s music for years. I think she’s a really interesting and innovative artist, so when I heard the first single from her new album, I really wanted to perform it. I could just envisage a rock version of it, and it was great fun to work on!'

Stream the single: https://orcd.co/chantel-mcgregor-stupid-love



Press inquiries: 
Glass Onyon PR
Billy James
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glassonyonpr@gmail.com

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Los Angeles CA 90025
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21 May 2020

Make Believe Friends To Release New Single "Act of Love"


Make Believe Friends will be releasing their new single “Act of Love” on May 22, 2020. Mindy Milburn (lead singer) & Laura Espinoza (guitarist/songwriter) are the core members of Make Believe Friends (and also Lunden Reign), an all original alt rock band based out of West Hills, California. Laura & Mindy have already released 4 singles with “Follow Me to the Sun” picked as the #1 song of 2019 by Warren Kurtz of Goldmine Music Magazine.

About “Act of Love”:

From Mindy: 
The lyrics are referring to any challenge one may face in life, and the resilience of the human spirit to overcome it, even when we may not believe it is possible. “It's the strength to rise above, all it takes is an act of love.” It's about trusting your instinct and staying focused on your path, knowing everything will work out in the end, exactly as it's supposed to be. It's also about how remaining undeterred, open to change and growth, and compassionate towards others during such an uncertain time helps us to get through it, and getting through it together makes us all stronger. “It's a whispered prayer, a selfless dare, it's everywhere.”

From Laura: 
We wanted to write an uplifting song and something that speaks about the human spirit in a time of crisis. How people rise to the occasion to help others, even at their own peril. This is an Act of Love.

About the production:
Act of Love by Make Believe Friends (featuring the members of Lunden Reign) was written by Laura Espinoza (music) & Mindy Milburn (lyrics).
Producer: Geoff Pearlman (Echo in the Canyon Band/Film)
Musicians: Lead Vocals: Mindy Milburn; Harmony: Miranda Miller (formerly with Hey Violet!); Guitars: Laura Espinoza & Geoff Pearlman; Piano: Michael Bluestein (Foreigner); Drums: Noel Jasso.  Mastered by: Grammy winning Evren Goknar

“Act of Love” 

If I didn't know better
I'd think this was a dream 
So hard to believe 
Everything we once knew has changed 
and it may never be the same 

One thing I know that's real
An iron will, a heart of steel 
It's the strength to rise above 
All it takes is an act of love
An act of love

It's a whispered prayer
A selfless dare
It's everywhere

Seems to be happening so fast 
Pulls like a current,
It's not meant to last 
Just a test of our hearts and minds 
To see what we’re really made of inside

Right before our eyes 
The seasons change
The clock unwinds
It’s the strength to rise above 
All it takes is an act of love

The darkest caves hide beauty & truth
Ride the waves that carry you
Know each day the sun breaks through 
To illuminate a new point of view

When pushed over the line 
Make the most of 
The space that confines 
We really don't need too much 
What will you do with all this time?

'Cause right, before our eyes 
The seasons change 
The clock unwinds
It's the strength to rise above 
All it takes is an act of love
It's the strength to rise above
All it takes is an act of love
An act of love
It's a whispered prayer
A selfless dare
It's everywhere
It’s everywhere



About Laura Espinoza:
Laura is a songwriter/guitarist, playwright, and TV producer. Laura recently won a NARAS songwriting contest, exclusive to Grammy voting members where she participated in a private songwriting workshop with Busby, Rodney Jerkins, and Sarah Hudson. She has performed on stage with Luis Maldonado (Train), Terri Nunn (Berlin), Dale Bozzio (Missing Persons) & Prescott Niles (The Knack) and started her career with Matt Sorum (Guns n' Roses). She has recorded at Capitol Records, Hollywood, Abbey Road, UK and is the host of “The Rock Radio Show” on KBU-FM, Malibu. Laura is also the recipient of 3 Emmy Awards.

About Mindy Milburn:
Mindy has a passion for singing and music. Originally from Cleveland Ohio, Mindy also sings for other bands when not performing with Make Believe Friends and Lunden Reign including both No Doubt and Madonna tribute bands. Mindy is now living in Los Angeles after moving from Ohio and is the proud parent of two wonderful children.

The band will resume live performances after the CoronaVirus pandemic restrictions are lifted.

To purchase: https://lundenreign.com/store-songs

For more information: 
www.MakeBelieveFriendsBand.com
www.lundenreign.com

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 1-828-350-8158 (US), glassonyonpr@gmail.com

Blues Giants ERIC GALES & JOE LOUIS WALKER Team Up On A Brand New Single & Video!


Los Angeles, CA - Hot on the heels of the first single release, “Old Time Used To Be,” from Joe Louis Walker’s forthcoming new album, Blues Comin’ On, comes the second single release, the superb title track. And just like the debut single featured a collaboration with fellow modern blues icon Keb’ Mo’, “Blues Comin’ On” the single offers an even bigger and more brilliant partnership with not one but TWO featured guests, blues guitar hero Eric Gales and superstar singer, The Wanderer himself, Dion! While Joe & Dion cover vocal and rhythm guitar duties, Gales take the lead, offering up some stellar riffs that add both flavor and vibrancy to the verses as well as a smokin’ hot solo. Walker & Gales even participated in a special quarantine-style video shoot for the song, filming themselves separately while Dion joined in spirit.

Check out the video here:


Walker had this to say about the track, “It’s great to have so many groundbreaking artists perform on this album. But it’s always special when Eric Gales contributes his guitar genius. It takes the song to another level!”

Stream the single: https://orcd.co/blues-comin-on-single1
Purchase the album: https://orcd.co/blues-comin-on

Track List:
1. Feed the Poor feat. Jorma Kaukonen
2. Blues Comin’ On feat. Eric Gales & Dion
3. Someday, Someway feat. Carla Cooke & Lee Oskar
4. The Thang feat. Jesse Johnson
5. Old Time Used To Be feat. Keb’ Mo’
6. Come Back Home feat. Mitch Ryder
7. Bowlegged Woman, Knock-Kneed Man feat. Waddy Wachtel
8. Awake Me Shake Me feat. Carla Cooke
9. Lonely Weekends feat. David Bromberg
10. Seven More Steps feat. Albert Lee
11. Uptown To Harlem feat. Jellybean Johnson
12. 7 & 7 Is feat. Arlen Roth & Charlie Harper

Press inquiries: 
Glass Onyon PR
Billy James
PH: 828-350-8158
glassonyonpr@gmail.com

CLEOPATRA RECORDS, Inc.
11041 Santa Monica Blvd #703
Los Angeles CA 90025
www.CleopatraRecords.com


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20 May 2020

Jazz Review: John Scofield, Steve Swallow, & Bill Stewart - Swallow Tales

Release Date: June 05, 2020
Label: ECM Records
Website

According to his website bio, Scofield and his music lie “somewhere between post-bop, funk edged jazz, and R & B.” John Scofield has, over his 50 years within the industry, played with some of the biggest names in the music industry known to man. One of his biggest partnerships was with the late, great Miles Davis. This duo provided Scofield the capability to flourish from a springboard perspective into the spotlight of Jazz as both an instrumentalist and composer harmoniously. With his latest project Swallow Tales, the 68-year-old has not shown any signs of slowing down anytime soon.

Steve Swallow, one of two partners on this album, is a jazz bassist and composer hailing from my home state of New Jersey,(who knew?) Swallow was one of the first bassists to switch up entirely to utilize an electric bass. Like his teammate, for more than 50 years, Steve has been writing and even educating youth at the Berklee College of Music. At 79, Steve is still contributing to upcoming works including Swallow Tales.

Bill Stewart is the mastermind behind the rhythm and beat of the newest album creation. If not for him, the record might lose a sense of excitement and anticipation that several of the tracks offer. As the youngest of the trio in this group, the 53-year-old collaborates once again with Scofield to impress upon new, upcoming artists incorporating his “polyrhythmic, or layered character” with that of their own new and inventive styles that they might develop in a quest to become a new “great” musician or artist of tomorrow.

In just a basic glance of the album’s artwork, Swallow Tales comes across as something one might listen to on that of the dreariest, dampest of days. Turning on the intro track, “She Was Young” reveals quite the opposite of mindsets. It’s cool, simple, film-like beginning lays the groundwork for an enjoyable nine-and-a-half minute electric guitar getaway. The flicks and picks amid the track keep the listener wondering where he might go next as he eases back into solemn, quiet playing.

“Falling Grace” is more of a somber tune but appealing nonetheless. Its shuffle-like sound and the consistent rise and fall structure throughout the playtime is a fun way to incorporate different techniques through the tracks. “Portsmouth Figurations” brings about a more-defined drum beat to change up the sound-alike chain of the prior two tracks, even if you can spot the differences. Instrumental pieces, often make it difficult to capture what separates one track from another, however, it is very-much still possible to do so.

“Awful Coffee” is most certainly apparent in its more mellow style, especially as the track opens. The track aligns very closely with the design and setup of the album’s artwork, where it might be best listened to within the confines of a darker room or under the haze of a gray, cloudy sky. “Eiderdown” blends quite seamlessly with its predecessor up until about the 2-minute mark where it differentiates with a rumble-like tone and more staccato-type form. The seven-minute tune avails more zig-zag maze imagery than the others heard so far as there does not seem to be one set theme in this track.

“Hullo Bolinas” brings the listener back down from a high of excitement and pop-infused playtime. The more elongated, allegro formation of this track appeals to those who like tracks that are more at ease and with less of an intensity that jazz can often possess. That’s the thing with jazz, it can range from a calm, soothing notion, to a highly clashing, bombastic, and lively sound that surprises the listener at every turn.

Next on the record, “Away” begins its music with an apparent country-like sound, like someone who has lost a love or who has moved away from settings or people familiar and typical to the individual. With every note that is played, your heart feels for when the guitar tweaks and crescendos with each note. The song reminds me much of the Christmas song by The Carpenters, “Christmas Waltz” (“And this song of mine in three-quarter time. Wishes you and yours the same thing too.”)

Rounding out the album, “In F” is a funky, groovy track bound to put anyone who listens in a great mood and get some up off their feet to dance. Its rock-pop vibe carries a difference from the rest of the record which might go unnoticed if you are one who likes to skip tracks or select your favorites rather than listen to the record in its entirety for what it’s worth. Finally, “Radio” keeps with the appeal of “In F” succeeding to send off the listener with a smile and a feel of how each groove and divet of jazz can be peculiar in their own right. Just when you think the artist is going in one direction, he or she takes your trained ear and throws it reverse. And just like everything else, oftentimes it works, and sometimes it misses the mark. Here, Swallow Tales accomplishes the mission of entertainment and experience for the unexperienced musician or just plain music lover.


Gregg Keniston- MuzikMan.net Staff
May 17, 2020

 

Track Listing:
1. She Was Young
2. Falling Grace
3. Porsmouth Figurations
4. Awful Coffee
5. Eiderdown
6. Hullo Bolinas
7. Away
8. In F
9. Radio

 

19 May 2020

Sandy McKnight With Fernando Perdomo Releases New EP "San Fernando Beat"


Sandy McKnight is a songwriter, producer and performer. Fernando Perdomo is a multi-instrumentalist, producer and noted session player. Together, their individual talents are exponentially enhanced. Their first product together is a six-song EP, “San Fernando Beat.” Fernando takes the infectious melodies that flow freely from the prolific McKnight and adds musical textures and his trademark energy, and the result is magical. PowerPop.com claims, “'San Fernando Beat' is clearly the best EP of the year.”

Before it was even released, one of the songs they recorded at Perdomo's Reseda Ranch Studio in LA made its way to legendary disc jockey Rodney Bingenheimer, who immediately played it on his influential national radio show. An auspicious start, for sure.

Says Sandy, “The idea behind San Fernando Beat was to bring together two top-tier songwriter/musicians (myself and 'Echo in the Canyon's' Fernando Perdomo) to interpret, or should I say, bash out my latest Power Pop songs. Beyond that, there was no specific theme, although there's a timely topicality to a few of the songs, while keeping the fun quotient high.”

Perdomo and McKnight had met a year earlier, while Sandy was recording his '70s homage “Wow and Flutter,” produced by Chris Silagyi of the band 20/20. A session at Reseda Ranch resulted in a connection between Sandy and Fernando, and in November 2019 they spent 2 productive days recording Sandy's songs in LA. Fernando was immediately blown away by Sandy's songwriting skills. They did 3 songs in those sessions, and decided to cut 3 more tunes bi-coastally (Perdomo works out of SoCal, McKnight is based in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts). Sandy cut the bass tracks, vocals and mixes for the 3 long distance songs at New York's Systems Two Studios, with Grammy-winning engineer Mike Marciano.



Sandy is a 40+year veteran of the music business. In the '70s, he was an in-demand bassist for live and studio work. He played with the New York City-based bands Numbers, The Coupons (with future Smithereens drummer Dennis Diken), Spitfire Boys, The Truants, and others. His dues-paying gigs included 2 years in the seminal “punk-funk” outfit Free and Easy, with future 5-time Downbeat poll-winner, trombonist Ray Anderson.

By the 1980's, Sandy was working with top-name artists as a session player, while continuing to be a part of successful NYC bands. Working in the studio with names like Todd Rundgren, Jean-Yves Labat (M. Frog), and legendary producer Joel Diamond, Sandy learned the ropes in the control room, and soon tried his hand at producing records. He honed his craft at famed Brooklyn studio Systems Two, and by the end of the decade was adept at producing recordings for all genres and budgets.

In the '90s, Sandy moved to the west coast, and opened Arrow Productions in Hollywood. There, he recorded diverse acts and up-and-coming singer/songwriters, along with composing music for film and television soundtracks. His solo career as an artist also took off in L.A., and he recorded his first solo album, “12XME,” which was released in 1992 to critical acclaim. It was in L.A. where he met a young singer/songwriter named Liv Cummins, who he developed and signed to his new indie label, 22 Records.

Liv's debut disc, “Some Days,” was recorded at Paul Antonell's The Clubhouse, and featured such top session players as Gary Burke (Joe Jackson, Bob Dylan, Shania Twain), Sara Lee (B-52s, Indigo Girls, Gang of Four), John Platania (Van Morrison, Chip Taylor), Vinnie Martucci, and a vocal duet with legendary folk-pop singer/songwriter Jonathan Edwards. Her record was an international smash, garnering airplay and rave reviews. Sandy produced a follow-up for Liv, “...exactly,” which was also well-received.

Sandy continued to write and record his own material as well, and soon was heard regularly on many TV shows and several film soundtracks. His 2003 release, “In Solitary,” was a production and songwriting tour-de-force. The ambitious, eclectic CD featured musicians like afro-cuban jazz piano great Oriente Lopez, Argentine-tango violinist Leonardo Suarez-Paz, rock drummer Dennis Diken, and other top players. Sandy has self-produced in a range of styles from latin-tinged jazz pop to British-flavored power pop to atmospheric strings-and-piano arrangements. “In Solitary” continues to find new fans and is regularly re-discovered on Spotify, iTunes, and other internet sites.

Along with his current release with Perdomo, “San Fernando Beat,” his bands Sandy McKnight & the Idea and Pop-Clique also have current releases. His box set, “How I Changed the World,” is a 66-song collection of songs he wrote between 1978-2010. Much of Sandy's music can be heard on Spotify, YouTube, etc.

In closing, Sandy has this to impart about SFB, and what he hopes to communicate to the listener. “I wouldn't call it a message, so much as a feeling. A joy, a strength...what rock music has always been about. The feeling you're listening to a friend tell you about his life, his loves, his attitude. And, since I'm just a bassist from Brooklyn, my ideas are fairly universal. The main reason for listening is that, hopefully, you've never heard these ideas expressed in quite this way. Writing songs conveys not only lyrical imagery...the melodies and chord changes, the arrangements, and the energy all contribute to making a unique statement.”

To purchase: https://www.amazon.com/Fernando-Sandy-McKnight-featuring-Perdomo/dp/B085NWPH8X
or
www.sandymcknight.com

For more information: www.sandymcknight.com

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 1-828-350-8158 (US), glassonyonpr@gmail.com

13 May 2020

Reggae Legends Chalwa Release New Single "Cool Mountains" From Upcoming Album 'NewRootz'


For the past 15 years, Chalwa has been sending out Positive Earthly Vibrations from the Mountains of Western North Carolina, and now the WORLD has finally found out what our friends in the “cool mountains” have known all along! “Cool Mountains” is the first Single off Chalwa‘s upcoming album, “NewRootz”, set to drop June 21, 2020. This album is a compilation of Chalwa’s most popular songs written over the past decade, now recorded with the current lineup at New Rootz Studio with J Ferris at the master command console. “NewRootz” is truly the band’s new foundation.

“Cool Mountains” represents Chalwa’s unique Mountain Reggae sound and their love for their beautiful home in Western NC. Chalwa fuses music from the Blue Mountains of Jamaica with the Blue Mountains of Appalachia.

Watch the video:


Chalwa plans to release 2 additional singles and a 2nd album this Summer with more of their newest hits!

This 8 piece Mountain Reggae band out of Asheville, NC represents a community giving thanks for life, one love and the continual growth of Music, Mind and Spirit.

Sharing a connection with the Blue Mountains of Jamaica, Chalwa draws from the ancient roots of the Appalachia to grow and spread their musical mediation and positive vibrations. Their high energy shows are one of a kind and always get the diverse crowd dancing and groovin’ to the message. With 50 shows a year on Sunday afternoons at Highland Brewing alone, Chalwa draws an ever growing crowd wherever they go. Welcome to the tribe!

The band consists of a diverse, all-star line-up of local musicians from bands such as the Asheville Horns, Hope Massive, Josh Phillips Folk Festival, Biodesiel, and the Everydays. After hitting the scene in 2006, Chalwa toured throughout the southeast US and Jamaica. The band has shared the stage with reggae greats such as: Steel Pulse, Midnite, Groundation, The Meditations, Bambu Station, SOJA, Pato Banton, and many more. Chalwa released it’s first CD in 2009 and was voted one of the top World Music, Reggae bands by the ASHEVILLE entertainment paper the MountainXress in 2010.

Members: 

Dennis Berndt: Lead Vocals, Guitar
Dusty Brown: Bass
Nethali Percival: Percussion, Vibes
Timothy Marsh: Guitar, Vocals
Bernard Carmen: Keys, Vocals
Joshua Lyn: Drums
Jason Hazinski: Saxophone
Evan Ackerman - Guitar
Jay Ferris | NewRootz Studio: Master Engineer

For more information: 
https://www.chalwaroots.com/
https://chalwaroots.com/map

Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 1-828-350-8158, glassonyonpr@gmail.com

12 May 2020

Blues Royal SHIRLEY KING, Daughter Of B.B. KING, Unveils New Studio Album With A Court Of Special Guests!


Features performances by Joe Louis Walker, Robben Ford, Elvin Bishop, Junior Wells, Pat Travers, Steve Cropper, Martin Barre, Harvey Mandel and others!

Los Angeles, CA - Being the blues-singing daughter of B.B. King has earned Shirley King the title “Daughter of the Blues,” but she is an outstanding singer and performer in her own right and capable of singing any kind of music that comes her way. Just witness her newest full-length album, Blues For A King, which crosses musical genres from blues to rock to soul and back again. Even next to such high wattage guests as Joe Louis Walker, Robben Ford, Junior Wells, Pat Travers & Elvin Bishop, King absolutely shines as she performs spectacular version of the blues classics “Gallows Pole” and “Hoodoo Blues Man” as well as the soul hit “Johnny Porter” (originally by The Temptations) plus two songs by British rock band Traffic, “Can’t Find My Way Home” and “Feelin’ Alright?.” The album closes with a powerful version of Etta James’s unforgettable “At Last,” which signals that, at long last, Shirley King is finally getting the attention and recognition she so richly deserves.

“I’m so thrilled that these great artists lent their amazing talents to my new album. I can’t thank them enough for believing in me. I’m so proud of this album and can’t wait for the world to hear it. I feel it’s my best work yet,” enthuses Shirley. Blues Hall of Fame guitarist Joe Louis Walker, who guests on two tracks on the new album, says, “I’ve had the honor of performing on two B.B. King albums. Now I have the distinct honor and pleasure of playing on his daughter’s album, Shirley King, who is also my dear friend. Keep the thrill goin’ on, Shirley….”

Blues For A King will be available on both CD and vinyl starting June 19 from Cleopatra Blues, a subsidiary of Cleopatra Records, Inc.

To purchase the album: https://orcd.co/shirley-king

Track List:
1. All Of My Lovin' feat. Joe Louis Walker
2. Feelin' Alright feat. Duke Robillard
3. I Did You Wrong feat. Elvin Bishop
4. That's All Right Mama feat. Pat Travers
5. Can't Find My Way Home feat. Martin Barre
6. Johnny Porter feat. Arthur Adams
7. Feeling Good feat. Robben Ford
8. Give It All Up feat. Kirk Fletcher
9. Gallows Pole feat. Harvey Mandel
10. Hoodoo Man Blues feat. Junior Wells & Joe Louis Walker
11. At Last feat. Steve Cropper

BIO
Born and raised in Memphis, Shirley began singing in the church choir at age nine. When she was thirteen, she met another music legend – Etta James. Young Shirley was so impressed by Etta’s performance that she made Etta her musical role model. Ruth Brown and the late Mahalia Jackson also greatly influenced the fledgling singer. Shirley says, “I grew up around the stage watching my dad become famous, but I never imagined I’d become a blues singer too.” Ms. King came late to the blues, first trying it on in 1990. Within six months, she was a regular performer at famed Chicago blues club Kingston Mines. Two years later she saw the release of her first CD, “Jump Through My Keyhole.”

In 1999, Shirley released her highly acclaimed blues album, “Daughter of the Blues,” which featured her soulful, bluesy versions of classics like “Wang Dang Doodle,” “Sweet Home Chicago,” “Every Day I Have the Blues” and, fittingly, “The Thrill is Gone.” Once her father caught her act he lent his full support to Shirley’s efforts at carrying on the blues. She admits that having a legendary father helped open some doors for her, but it was her talent, charisma and high-energy stage presence, along with her big, beautiful singing voice, that put her on the musical map. From traditional blues to gospel to funky R&B to smooth soul, Shirley defies genre and her singing and stage antics never fails to excite her growing number of fans worldwide.

Shirley also believes in giving back. She has worked with kids as an artist-in-residence with the highly acclaimed Urban Gateways Arts in the Schools Program at Chicago Public Schools and continues to expose school children to the history blues has played in American culture. All in all, Shirley King continues to be the quintessential ambassador for the blues - and that’s something that would certainly make her daddy proud.

For more info, visit Shirley’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/shirley.king.790

Press inquiries: 
Glass Onyon PR
Billy James
PH: 828-350-8158
glassonyonpr@gmail.com

CLEOPATRA RECORDS, Inc.
11041 Santa Monica Blvd #703
Los Angeles CA 90025
www.CleopatraRecords.com


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11 May 2020

Ex-HAWKWIND Bassist ALAN DAVEY Releases 4CD Box Set Of Home Demos Including Early HAWKWIND Songs!


Los Angeles, CA - Alan Davey, the brilliantly creative musician/songwriter/producer perhaps best known for being the protégé of Motörhead’s Lemmy as well as filling Lemmy’s leather boots as the bassist for space rock icons Hawkwind, is an astoundingly exhaustive artist. Just this year, Davey has overseen the release of new singles by his superstar project Hawkestrel that featured Rick Wakeman, Pat Travers and electronic violinist Shankar (Peter Gabriel, Frank Zappa) as well as the release of a 3-album set from his side project Pre-Med. And now comes the release of a 4CD collection of home studio recordings, awesomely dubbed Four-Track Mind. With recordings that date back to the mid-‘80s all the way up to this decade, Four-Track Mind will give the listener a glimpse into the creative evolution of this amazingly adventurous artist. Packaged in a deluxe clamshell box with individual wallets for each disc along with a 12-page booklet with detailed liner notes and vintage photos, this is a box set that no Alan Davey fan should be without!

Davey has this to say about the collection: “Rarely do musicians ever release their learning curves of writing, mixing, and production skills, with all the clicks and pops and unedited flaws, but I thought people would find it interesting to see how I evolved my style and sound over the years. From a 4-track cassette machine, here are 60+ demos of many of my songs and some not yet used!”

Four-Track Mind will be available on both CD and digital everywhere starting May 22!

To purchase: https://orcd.co/alan-davey-four-track-mind

Tracks:
DISC 1
1. Spiritual Modulator (1986)
2. R.E.M. Time (1986)
3. Chinese Whispers (1986)
4. Transient (1986)
5. Slumber Head (1986)
6. Dragon Chaser (1986)
7. Hypno Trip (1986)
8. In A Sphere (1986)
9. E-On Strings (1986)
10. Wind Of Ghosts (1987)
11. Dark Light (1987)
12. Moody Motion (1987)
13. Flight To Andromeda (1987)
14. Sunrise Assassins (1988)
15. Moonstone (1988)
16. Dragon Chaser (1988)
17. Sword Of The East (1988)
18. A Shot In The Dark (Motor Pink Head) (1988)

DISC 2
1. Spiritual Modulator
2. The Call
3. Fire Tribe
4. Return To...
5. Simulator
6. Chased
7. Dragon Chaser
8. Drive
9. On Acid Bass!
10. Hitze Seeker V
11. Of Wings
12. Out Of My Box
13. Robby's Rap
14. Jigging
15. The Noise
16. Abab Fed
17. Backwards Thru Water
18. Tribal Daze

DISC 3
1. Lost In The Smoke
2. Snake Charmer
3. Up And Up
4. The Animal
5. Deep Space Rock
6. Don't Fret
7. From The Deep
8. Blue Shift
9. OSC Squared
10. Stan's Middle 8
11. Astron Belt
12. Special Place
13. Received
14. Fear At Night
15. Endoparasitoid
16. Wave Upon Wave
17. Space To Go

DISC 4
1. Greenback Massacre
2. Shahadah
3. Many Voices
4. Bird Nebula
5. Creamy
6. Holosuite Program
7. Assimilation
8. Alien Fingers
9. The Wind
10. Be Still
11. Magic B
12. LGM
13. In The Game
14. Reality Foil

Press inquiries: 
Glass Onyon PR
Billy James
PH: 828-350-8158
glassonyonpr@gmail.com

CLEOPATRA RECORDS, Inc.
11041 Santa Monica Blvd #703
Los Angeles CA 90025
www.CleopatraRecords.com


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10 May 2020

Alt-Blues Review: Mark Lanegan - Straight Songs of Sorrow

Release Date: May 8, 2020
Label: Heavenly

Mark Lanegan comes right out and says it, so don't say you weren't warned. These are Straight Songs of Sorrow. The deep lyrics riding upon guttural resonance evokes a cathartic empathy for the state of the world and the people inhabiting it which is nothing short of beautiful. It may not be the artist's desired effect, but after I put my headphones down, I feel a whole lot better about my own personal lot in life and the future of humankind. I suppose in this respect one could call this a blues album, but the blood mixed in makes it more purple. 

Founder of grunge pioneers and extremely underrated Screaming Trees, Lanagan rides the tailwind of his recent soul-bearing memoir, Sing Backwards and Weep. His book details the youthful search for "decadence, depravity, anything, everything." In it, Lanagan reveals the guilt he feels to this day about the death of his friend, Kurt Cobain. The vocals are reminiscent of classic blues singers yet bent with a blend of dark Iggy Pop mixed with Leonard Cohen, and infused with a twist of Nick Cave.

The distressed sonic texture strikes a chord from which the lyrics jump off and strike a nerve with tales of heartache and sorrow and warning signs of the hard road ahead. The album begins with Lanegan warning listeners not to take his advice. "Suddenly, everything I ever had is on ice. All those who tried to help me scattered like mice. No, I wouldn't want to say."

"Bleed All Over," the song with the most velocity in the collection, still reverberates with a vengeful sorry. "Don't you say it's over… I never wanted to… I'm a bleed all over." On "Skeleton Key," Lannegan laments, "I'm ugly inside and out… Love me, why would you ever love me? No one has ever loved me yet, pretty baby."

On Straight Songs of Sorrow, slow and soulful guitar travels on a gravel road of heavy bass and subdued drums. In the driver's seat, Lanegan couldn't care less what his passengers think. Unburdened by obligation and pretension, the artist is free to express his true self and travel wherever he wants. That is precisely what Lanegan has done, and we're all the wiser for coming along for the ride. 

- Tom Endyke | Guitar & Pen

09 May 2020

Rock Review: Eric Burdon & The Animals-When I Was Young – The MGM Recordings 1967-1968

Release Date: February 28, 2020
Label: Esoteric

When I Was Young – The MGM Recordings 1967-1968 is a 5-disc set covering Eric Burdon & The Animals. Each of these discs shows a pattern. As you stream through the music, the tone and themes overall go from disc one, and five shapes themselves up to be more of a darker sound than that of the other three discs. In ascending order, discs two through four increasingly become a bit lighter with the themes surrounding them. Minus a few extra tracks and one being formatted in stereo and one for mono, the two bookend discs play out similarly. It’s well worth playing on a day of reminiscing or if you might have a grey feeling throughout your day.

Eric Burdon & The Animals came about in 1966 when the actual band The Animals abruptly parted ways, he formed a similar but newer version of the group. It took hold of a Psychedelic rock type of influence rather than that of its former R&B stylings. He possessed a particular skill few in the Rock world could bring to life and not have the message and sound overdone or duplicated.

Disc two still carries a bit of a darker undertone but, generally, The Twain Shall Meet is an album of eventfulness and storytelling. You can feel a sense of wonder and awe in songs like “All Is One,” and “Just The Thought.” The album is rightly titled because it comes off very poetically. However, it also speaks to songs of war and unfortunate sorrow in the song “Sky Pilot.” You get an action-packed album amid this packaged deal.

Everyone Of Us is a blend of items. It contains an instrumental piece, “Serenade to A Sweet Lady,” along with a spoken-word track of “The Immigrant Lad.” It also includes a short story-styled song of “New York 1963 – America 1968.” You can tell by the titles of the tracks, that a lot of historical context surrounds the entirety of this album, and while it may be for a select group of ears (as many may not find the album impactful), it does carry an impressive framework about it.

Think of disc four as the icing on the cake, or the joy and celebration of light after a series of unfortunate events. There’s a common theme of love and its lasting effects both good and bad. “River Deep, Mountain High,” is that excitement burst of how much intensity one’s love could be another while, “Ring Of Fire,” represents how much power and heat can be put into love itself and loving someone, who may or may not return the same feeling.

This album certainly has an eclectic sense of emotion and lessons to be learned. Moreover, it is a great representation of laid back, mellow vibes to give younger listeners a sense of how music can captivate both a message and create an endless earworm to soothe the mind after an eventful day or stimulate the mind to think more introspectively.

Key Tracks: “Monterey,” “A Girl Named Sandoz,” “Year of the Guru,” “Gemini,” “Ring of Fire.”

Gregg Keniston- MuzikMan.net Staff
May 8, 2020

Track Listing:
 
Disc One: Winds Of Change (Re-Mastered Stereo Mix)


01.    Winds Of Change
02.    Poem By The Sea
03.    Paint It Black
04.    The Black Plague
05.    Yes, I Am Experienced
06.    San Franciscan Nights
07.    Man – Woman
08.    Hotel Hell
09.    Good Times
10.    Anything
11.    It’s All Meat
12.    When I Was Young
13.    A Girl Named Sandoz
14.    Ain’t That So
15.    Gratefully Dead
16.    Anything (Single Version)

Disc Two: The Twain Shall Meet


01.    Monterey
02.    Just The Thought
03.    Closer to The Truth
04.    No Self Pity
05.    Orange and Red Beams
06.    Sky Pilot
07.    We Love You Lil
08.    All Is One
09.    Sky Pilot (Part One) (Mono Single)
10.    Sky Pilot (Part Two) (Mono Single)
11.    Monterey (Mono Single Version)

Disc Three: Everyone Of Us


01.    White Houses
02.    Uppers and Downers
03.    Serenade to a Sweet Lady
04.    The Immigrant Lad
05.    Year of the Guru
06.    St. James Infirmary
07.    New York 1963 – America 1968
08.    White Houses (Single Version)

Disc Four: Love Is


01.    River Deep, Mountain High
02.    I’m An Animal
03.    I’m Dying, or Am I?
04.    Ring Of Fire
05.    Coloured Rain
06.    To Love Somebody
07.    As The Years Go Passing By
08.    Gemini
09.    The Madman (Running Through the Fields)
10.    River Deep, Mountain High (Single Version)

Disc Five: Winds Of Change (Re-Mastered Mono Mix)


01.    Winds of Change
02.    Poem By the Sea
03.    Paint It Black
04.    The Black Plague
05.    Yes, I Am Experienced
06.    San Franciscan Nights
07.    Man – Woman
08.    Hotel Hell
09.    Good Times
10.    Anything
11.    It’s All Meat