Kim Mitchell "The Big Fantasize"

Kim

“The Big Fantasize” marks the Canadian music icon Kim Mitchell’s eight studio album – plus five as the leader of pioneering rockers Max Webster and his first studio album since 2007’s “Ain’t Life Amazing”. But where its predecessor was a fiery and fierce rock album anchored by big riffs and bigger swagger, “The Big Fantasize” is more dynamic and musically expansive effort that perfectly encapsulates Mitchell’s prowess as a pure and compelling songwriter.

Kim’s latest studio album is co-produced by close friend and Grammy-winning hitmaker Greg Wells (Keith Urban, Taylor Swift). To cut it short “TBF” still offers a pretty sweet and sexy ride – just one where the focus is less on what’s under the hood and more on life’s journey itself !

Order available at Nehrecords


East Temple Avenue "Both Sides Of Midnight"

East

A new melodic supergroup? Well, in a way, yes! EAST TEMPLE AVENUE, the “baby“ of Australian Darren Phillps who collaborates with the Swedes Philip Lindstrand, Dennis „Butabi“ Borg and Herman Turin (WORK OF ART) as well as with the mighty voice Robbie LaBlanc (FIND ME, BLANC FACES) and delivers an AOR/melodic milestone.

Let alone ´“Don’t Make Believe“, “My Last Breath“ or “When I’m With You“ shine. The ballads “The End Of Me“ and “Where Love is“ are amazing, too. Great production, absolutely no fillers and stellar musicianship are key points here. Please more, guys! Stadion rock-like anthems and emotional tunes which will definitely stay.


Jarrod Lawson "Be The Change"

Jarrod

Portland, Oregon singer-songwriter-keyboardist Jarrod Lawson emerged seemingly out of nowhere, at the age of 37, with a self-produced debut album that took the world of soul and jazz by storm. Within a whirlwind couple of years the former stonemason and piano tuner played sold-out shows at London s Ronnie Scott s Club and Jazz Cafe, performed at the London Jazz Festival, Love Supreme and North Sea Jazz festivals and powered his way into the Dutch Top 40 albums chart. He has since performed in Tokyo, in Melbourne, at Indonesia s Java Jazz festival and across the United States in leading jazz venues from Washington DC to Seattle, New York to Atlanta.

Describing him as the blue eyed soul boy of jazz , the London Evening Standard wrote: It s not just Lawson s wide-ranging tenor and ability to swing, scat and groove that has made him the biggest soul-jazz sensation in years. It s the way he s bringing spirituality back to a genre that had lost its depth .

Lawson is now back, with his long-awaited second album "Be The Change" , accompanied by a talented band that benefits from the rhythmic presence of Grammy-nominated percussionist Sammy Figueroa, whose playing in a lengthy career has graced dozens of albums from artists as diverse as Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins and Quincy Jones to Hall & Oates, Chic and Carole King.

Lawson s trademark layered harmonies and vocal phrasing, his jazz fusion arrangements and his stunning keyboard skills are in evidence throughout the album, notably on title track Be The Change , Universal Chord and Connected . On the beautiful, intimate I ll Be Your Radio he is joined by Amber Navran on vocals and flute and her fellow members of Los Angeles alternative R&B trio Moonchild who contribute clarinet and flugelhorn, and on the smoulderIng torch song Love Isn t Always Enough Max Ribner s trumpet and flugelhorn provide the perfect mood- setting accompaniment. Lawson grew up surrounded by music.  His father ran a recording studio in the family s Redwood City, California home.  After moving to Portland, he studied music and was a member of his college chamber choir and jazz ensemble.  His near obsession with the piano blossomed when he was only 13 as he studied the masters from Chopin to Oscar Peterson, Ravel to Errol Garner, as well as Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell and, of course, the artists who have influenced him the most - Donny Hathaway and Stevie Wonder.  In 2015 he received an Artist of the Year Award from UK s Jazz FM.


Bill Champlin "Livin' For Love"

CHAMP

Hey, everybody. this is Bill Champlin. how's your 2020 going? I read a post about the daylight savings time change that said, "getting an extra hour in 2020 is like getting a "bonus track" on a yoko ono album!!" Ouch. anyway, I think 2021 will see more albums than new babies 9 months after the New York blackout.

Speaking of new albums, I got one coming out in january or maybe february; I'm pushing for january. this is a solo album and not a Wunderground or Sons record. this thing is 14 songs of deep material and solid grooves; I think it may be the best compilation of songs I've ever put together. the title is "Livin' For Love", named after a song entitled "Livin' For Love". that song may be the closest thing to an R&B Blues thing than anything I've cut in a long time. Tamara heard it when I wrote it and said, "Bill, It's time for you to do another solo album". She's usually on the money when it comes to this kinda' stuff.

The guys on the record are some of the best in the business: Tal Morris, a former Sons' member, played a solo on it, Carmen Grillo, Sons, engineered a lotta' stuff and played a great solo, too. Marc Russo, a former Sons guy, played some horns things and one of the wildest solos ever, wow!!! Alan Hertz, Sons, played drums on a lot and mixed all but one song. Vinnie Colaiuta and George Hawkins Jr, played drums and bass on a track that Bruce Gaitsch played keys and guitar on that he found in his stash of what he calls kernals; Tamara and I wrote the melodies and lyrics within 5 minutes of hearing it. I wrote three songs with Greg Mathieson, piano, hammond organ, keys bass, programming etc, I've had some success with Greg over the years and we co-produced 3 of those on the record; one of those songs has Abraham Laboriel on bass, Gorden Campbell played drums on a handful of songs, Gary Falcone played a solo and co-wrote a handful with me and Tamara. Andreas Carlsson co-wrote one with me and I put him to work singing on the album and, except for one song, Lenny Castro played percussion on the album and, as usual, killed it. I played a bunch of guitar, bass, keys and fender, hammond organ and we did most of the vocals with Tamara and me but also we sang handful with Gary Falcone and Andreas Carlsson. Oh, Steve Porcaro did some awesome synth programming on one song also; he's sooooo good at this.

We're looking at releasing the record digitally in late january, on Imagen Records, but Tamara and I will be selling the cd's at billchamplin.com/shop. She's taking pre-orders now, already, and as soon as the new year comes around it'll all be happenin'. it's been maybe 13 or 14 years since I did a solo album and I think I was more than ready and up to the task. I hope you guys like it. Hey, usually when I'm finished with hearing songs over and over again I can't stand to hear 'em again, at least 'til my ears are fresh. I still dig this one top to bottom. I hope you feel the same way. Remember the days when we played our favorite albums and, when the last song on side 2 was done we just turned it over and started again? This one may just one of those. I hope to see you all in person as soon as this virus stuff has run it's course. I miss playing live but, for some reason, stopping live gigs, for a while, led to this album. Next: live!!! I love you tons!

Be SAFE Be GOOD Be BAAAAAAAAAD, Bill


Steve Lukather and Joseph Williams will release individual solo albums on February 26.

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Steve-lukather-i-found-the-sun-again-2021

Steve Lukather's "I Found The Sun Again" was co-produced by Ken Freeman. The players feature many dignitaries that have been in Luke's life for decades. Amongst those are drummer Gregg Bissonette, keyboardist Jeff Babko, and bassists Jorgen Carlsson and John Pierce. Lifelong friend and TOTO bandmate David Paich performs piano and organ across the album, while Joseph Williams sang on multiple tracks alongside writing string and horn arrangements and tracking keys on the aforementioned "Run To Me". Other co-writers include Stan Lynch, Jeff Babko, and, of course, Joseph Williams.

Joseph Williams's "Denizen Tenant" was produced by Williams outside of the compositions "Black Dahlia" and "No Lessons" which were arranged and produced by Jay Gruska and mixed by Dave Way. The musicians and singers who made contributions in the studio reads like a who's who of players that have been in the artist's life over the past four decades. Amongst these contributors are bandmates from TOTO, David Paich and Steve Lukather. Simon Phillips, Leland Sklar, Lenny Castro, Nathan East, all of whom enjoyed tenures in TOTO, are also featured players on the album. Additional contributions include performances by Oscar Bugarin, Jay Gruska, Mike Landau, Barbara Gruska, Steve Overton, Dylan Ronan, Hannah Ruick, Steve Tavaloni, Weston Wilson, Ray Williams and Mark T. Williams. The album was produced and mixed at Digbyroad Studios in Sherman Oaks, California.

"Denizen Tenant" features a dozen new recordings. Amongst these are a cover of THE BEATLES' "If I Fell", which Williams cites as the one specific song that taught him about the power of harmonies and vocal arrangements. On Peter Gabriel's "Don't Give Up", a very special guest performance is featured in his daughter Hannah laying down a vocal track. Across the recorded repertoire, there is a consistent presence of performances by guitarists Steve Lukather and Mike Landau alongside percussionist Lenny Castro

The recordings will be available individually on both CD and LP, alongside all streaming services globally. A limited-edition deluxe edition is available with the two titles bundled together.

Read More at blabbermouth.net


Firefall "Comet"

Firefall

Firefall's first album of new music in 25 years. Formed by the former members of the Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Spirit and Zephyr, Firefall's commercial success includes three Gold albums, two Platinum albums and eleven chart-topping singles. The band's biggest hit, "You Are the Woman" has been played on commercial radio more than 8,000,000 times and has also appeared in over 75 films and television shows. Over the past four decades, Firefall has toured the world and shared stages with other iconic bands such as Fleetwood Mac, The Band, The Beach Boys, Kenny Loggins, Journey, Heart, ELO and Marshall Tucker Band. Currently touring with three original members (Jock Bartley, David Muse, Mark Andes), longtime drummer Sandy Ficca and talented newcomer Gary Jones. Includes the singles "Nature's Way," "A Real Fine Day," & "There She Is."

Pre-orders here!


Martin & Garp "Sentimental Fools"

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Musician and producer Phil Martin has always been interested in the West Coast music scene and distinctive sound from the late 70’s era. Artist like Steely Dan, Hall & Oates, The Doobie Brothers, Fleetwood Mac and The Eagles all featured heavily in his diet of music when he was growing up.

As a producer and song writer, Phil has historically been more active in soul and jazz music. He has produced albums for successful projects such as The Jazzinvaders, Laura Vane and the Vipertones and The Soul Snatchers, all busy touring bands with radio support. After working on a project with singer Lo van Gorp (Garp) from the Netherlands, Phil found the perfect vocal fit to his recordings for his own West Coast flavoured pop album. Together with other song writers like Joel Sarakula and Laura Vane he began writing and producing songs.

Lo van Garp is a well known backing singer and saxophonist in Holland, recognised for his work backing many bigger artists like Marco Borsato, Paul Carrack, Roger Hodgson, Chaka Khan, Trijntje Oosterhuis, Al Jarreau to name a few. The sound of Martin & Garp can best be described as feel-good, radio friendly melodies romantically looking back to California in the 70’s. In amongst the catchy guitar and synth licks and luxurious harmonies, the theme is the unifying effect of music in the quest for sunny optimism. This album spills groovy rhythms, together with jazzy harmonies and smooth vocals. Imagine that ‘feel-good record’ that has to be played loudly in your convertible, cruising down the coast with the wind in your hair, darting in and out of the shade created by beach-side palm trees.


Bernie Chiaravalle "Maybe One Day"

Bernie

"I'm proud to announce that my 11th solo CD, MAYBE ONE DAY, will be released on Oct 10 on both CD and digital formats. Most of these songs were written from Feb through Sept 2020 during the "shelter in place" era. All of them were recorded and produced in this period with me handling all the instruments and vocals. I'd like to say it's my best but I'm always more partial to newer stuff I write. But I do believe I was more focused on this album than any other. Some of the lyrics are very timely for the times we live in.

I'm also proud to have co-written 3 songs with a couple of stellar songwriters. I co-wrote 2 with the great Bill Lloyd; "All Heat, No Light" and "Washed Too Clean". Anyone who knows Bill and his work knows how great he is! It was a thrill to write with him and I love the 2 songs we wrote!

The other co-write was with my longtime friend and bandmate (so to speak), Michael McDonald. That song is "Promise of Love". The basic idea has been around over 30 years or so. It was one of the first things we wrote together but we never finished it. It came up on my iPhone on shuffle a few months ago and I decided to give the song a try in the studio. I'm pleased with it and I believe you can hear the McD influence in it!

I'm so excited to share the record! I'll be letting you all know on Oct 10 were to get it. I'll also be offering personally signed CDs. peace and love!

Bernie"


You like Bill Champlin, Chicago... Discover the music of Viktor Jacob-Jonsson!!!

Viktor

Hailing from a small town in northern Sweden’s Lapland region, Viktor Jakob-Jonsson now resides in Stockholm with his wife Jana and newborn son Benjamin. While he’s working with communications, journalism and graphic design for a living, music has always been a strong passion in his life. In many ways, this was to be expected, being the youngest in a big and musical family with the town’s music teacher as father. Early introduced to Westcoast music by his older brothers, he found the center of his musical universe early on. Michael McDonald, Richard Page and Al Jarreau were just a few of the artists that ruled the airwaves in the Jonsson household. Viktor was especially hooked by the brilliant R&B infusions of singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Bill Champlin and, fueled by youthful enthusiasm, created a website dedicated to Bill’s career at the mere age of 12 – a heartfelt project, which he took care of every night after school throughout his teens.

Needless to say, it kept him out of trouble but it also gave him a good reason to stay out of the practise room. Having started out on saxophone only to realize that he had more in common with a mallard than with Michael Brecker, he quickly switched gears to piano. Playing chords opened up a whole new world of possibilities as to what he could do with the melodies he kept hearing in his head. Through songwriting, he found his way of approaching music. Viktor is the singer of Swedish pop trio Stalon and is constantly working on a new song in his suburban cellar studio. During the covid-19 pandemic of 2020, he decided to start releasing songs in his own name. First out is the single “A Little Denial”, slated for release on August 25. When not making music or changing diapers, he enjoys being in the nature, especially in the beautiful area of his childhood, Vilhelmina.

Littke


Japanese Label P-vine reissues Michael Stosic 1982 album!

Stosic

A miracle reprint. The refreshing breeze of the west coast comfortably tickles your ears.

American singer-songwriter Michael Stosic, who is currently active in the Gospel/CCM scene, released his first self-titled album in 1982. The original LP is rare and contents wonderful songs that will please "Soft Rock" fans. Sounds featuring brilliant horns, strings and high-level arrangements. Musicians are Tony Savage, Ray Kinman, Buddy Emmer, Jerry LaCroix, Mark Ishikawa, Jim Stipech, Lynn Groom, Scott Young, Larry Kinman and all the horn and string players including Edgar Winter. The names of David Batteau and Moon Calhoun are also in the composition.

From light mellow AOR to light urban boogie and sweet ballads, this is a masterpiece boasting rare music quality that sets it apart from most reissues!