A collection of original, beautiful Christmas songs mixed with intimate, rare and amazing renditions of Christmas classics, performed by great artist, such as Michael McDonald, Arianna Grande, Maria Mena, Kenny Loggins, Keb Mo, Alison Krauss and many more. 202 songs, over 12 hours of Christmas Joy Simply follow our playlist. Play it in seqence or ramdom and enjoy it. Merry Christmas 2016!!
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
Friday, October 2, 2015
Swedish singer/songwriter Andreas Sandlund has worked as a musician (pianist & vocalist) collaborating with the best artists in Sweden. He has also collaborated on songs written by Andreas Carlsson (Britney Spears), Johan Åberg (Christina Aguilera) and Desmond Child among others. As a songwriter, besides writing for himself, he has written songs for other well-known Swedish artists through his collaboration with major publisher Warner Chappell Scandinavia, where he was signed for a number of years. To date, he has released 3 albums, “Destiny” in 2012, “Sacred Love” in 2009, “Diamond No. 1” in 2006 and several singles such as “Although I Love You” a remake of a well-known South Korean song, which Andreas was asked to do in 2014 by the South Korean label Some Music Korea. His single “Tänd ett ljus” with former winner of the major Eurovision Song Contest, Carola was released in 2013. His songs have also appeared on album by record labels in Hong Kong, the Czech Republic, Russia and Slovakia. In 2014 Andreas devoted a lot of time writing music for various projects. He also visited South Korea for the first time, doing some promotion and various performances.
Now in 2015, Kithara Music in France has released a compilation album comprised of his most amazing compositions and his best works to date. The result is a heartwarming, fresh and beautiful set of songs immersed in a radio-friendly atmosphere. An incredible collection of original works embraced by pop rhythms, alternative stylings, beautiful vocals and sensibilities, which create a smooth contemporary vibe full of love, longing, sadness, happiness and everlasting emotions. Discover the fuzz around this sensible contemporary artist. The album is available worldwide only on CD Baby and in all digital stores in France.
Saturday, November 15, 2014
Every once in a while an album touches you in unexpected ways and “Momentum” by Tulio Cremisini is one of those albums. Cremisini studied the acoustic guitar at an early age but had to give it up in exchange for percussion as a result of an accident, which severed several of his tendons on his fingers. But after many years of diverting his musical skills in other directions, Cremisini bought a guitar and started fooling around trying to reconnect with the young boy who, decades ago, began learning how to play the instrument. After many hours of practice, several ideas began to flow as musical pieces and Cremisini found himself working overtime to keep the “Momentum” going and let the flow of ideas manifest itself into musical works, which he then recorded at his home studio. The result is a heartwarming, fresh and beautiful set of acoustic guitar pieces comparable to the works of Pierre Bensusan, Michael Hedges, Anthony Phillips and many other acoustic guitarists. Tulio Cremisini is a multitalented, classically trained musician, composer, songwriter and producer with over 35 years of experience working on original music for films, TV (shows for NBC/Universal/Telemundo), advertising, records and musical theater. He has been the Principal Timpanist with Miami Symphony Orchestra since 2008 and he has won several ASCAP and TV awards as well a 2010 Latin Grammy. He has worked as producer/songwriter or arranger for numerous top Latin and international artists. Tulio’s multicultural and eclectic educational background has given him such a special versatility to seamlessly embrace any musical style with class and effectiveness. And as a sample of such versatility please check out his work on a grand scale symphonic project: “Symphony of the Soul” (Ilan Chester). Chester expressed perfectly the achievement of Tulio Cremisini’s latest work: "…In his latest work, "Momentum", Tulio reveals his introspective and sensitive nature through the careful selection of melodies; and playing as if caressing his guitar, he manages to take the listener to a serene and beautiful place, a place where the feeling of longing and the goodness of heart are the all-pervading elements. ”Momentum" is a musical privilege to have and to cherish…"
Buy it at Amazon or
Monday, September 29, 2014
Brazil’s Bossa Nova emerged as one of the most influential movements in musical history, standardized by its anthem “Garota de Ipanema” (The Girl from Ipanema) written by Antônio Carlos Jobim and Vinícius de Moraes. But the influence of Bossa Nova with its strong jazz flavor has endure the test of time and it has embedded itself into the composition and performing style of many English-singing artists, some of which comprise “Bossanovanglo”. Published by Kithara Musique, this is an incredible collection of Bossa Nova originals and covers sung entirely in English and performed by some amazing international artists who have embraced bossa nova rhythms, jazz stylings and nylon string guitar colors with their own beautiful vocals and pop sensibilities to create a smooth contemporary vibe full of love, longing, sadness, happiness and everlasting emotions normally depicted on this Brazilian music genre. Featuring Canadian singer/songwriter Marc Jordan (famous for having written "Rhythm of My Heart" for Rod Stewart) a duo with Canadian jazz singer Molly Johnson; American composer, pianist and educator Don Grusin accompanied by sensual soul stylist singer Leon Ware of Mowtown fame; the amazing vocal-piano duo of American vocalist Cecily Gardner with famous Canadian composer, pianist, producer David Foster; German crooner Peter Fessler accompanied by the amazing NDR Bigband; German vocal extraordinaire Nikola Materne & Bossanoire; sultry Swedish vocalist Anna Nygren; American jazz diva Sylvia Bennett; the insideful American singer-songwriter Amy Holland (wife of Michael McDonald); the duo of German guitarist, composer Dago and acclaimed soul jazz singer Tokunbo Akinro; the ever cheerful Canadian singer Michele Mele and French awesome newcomers Aymeric Frerejean and Joel Virgel. Beautiful cover painting by Sergio Lazo.
Sunday, June 8, 2014
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
After and very long absence I am back with this controversial topic
Controversial? some might say!!
Well, for the artists, musicians, composers, sound recording owners and music publishers it is a controversial issue but one that doesn’t seem will go away.
For those of you who don’t know, Music Streaming services such as Spotify, Qobuz and Deezer have taken over the world making available practically every music recording to anybody in a vast spectrum of countries, either for free or for a subscription basis, which differs depending on the service’s business model and its terms and conditions.
The free subscriptions are basically invaded with advertising every 3 or 4 songs and are basically made that way to allure you into getting into a paid subscription. The advertisings are quite annoying and you can’t simply fast forward to your next chosen song, so you have to wait until the advertising is over to continue to listen to the music you’ve chosen.
Services go something like this:
Spotify: On mobile or tablets, you can always listen to artists, albums, created or ready-made playlists for free but always in shuffle mode. If you want to play any song or album in any order as you wish, any time, just upgrade to the Spotify Premium: Web access only without the ads and no commitment, for $4.99/month or Web/Mobile access without the ads and no commitment, for $9.99/month and you can play any song, anywhere. You also have the option of downloading music for fees such as those of iTunes, etc. & you’ll also be able to listen offline.
Deezer: Three subscription modes are available, Discovery: Web access only with ads, this is free. Premium: Web access only without the ads and no commitment, for $4.99/month; Premium+: Web/Mobile access without the ads and no commitment, for $9.99/month.
Qobuz: The world's first high-definition music streaming service based in France and only available in France, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, The United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Their subscriptions are: Premium 1: Web access only to music on MP3 (320 kbps resolution guaranteed) without the ads and no commitment, for $4.99/month; Premium 2: Web/mobile access to music on MP3 (320 kbps resolution guaranteed) without the ads and no commitment, for $9.99/month; Qobuz Hi-Fi: Web/mobile access to music on True CD Quality (FLAC 16 bit/44.1 kHz resolution guaranteed) without the ads and no commitment, for $19.99/month (Also available with listening limited to classical music for $14.99/month). One feature which separates Qobuz from other services is the option of downloading music at high resolutions. There are two levels of high quality audio available: Lossless, the uncompressed "True CD Quality" at 16-bit, as well as 24-bit Studio Masters range, boasting the actual quality of the files you purchase. Even thou Qobuz service is only available in the countries mentioned above, you can get them to change your account so you can purchase from other countries by emailing customer support in English or customer support in French. I guess this will bring foreign fees charged to your credit card, but Qobuz does have quite a larger selection of HD Tracks for sale (24 bits / 192 kHz on 12000 plus albums called “Qobuz Studio Masters”) making it very attractive for the Hi-Fi aficionado.
There are other services and business mdels as well, but I just wanted to give you an overall picture.
Now, you might say that this is “awesome”, to be able to listen to any music, any time, create your own playlists, etc. and it is wonderful indeed, but it comes at a price not to the consumer but to the artists, musicians, composers, sound recording owners and music publishers making this a controversial issue among music industry professionals.
And this is why:
One download sold at $0.99 purchased from any store, such as iTunes brings approximately the following revenue for the creators involved:
Store: $0.29; digital distributor: $0.10; sound recording owner: $0.60 and for example in the US the sound recording owner must pay the owner of the composition a fee of $0.091 before they pay the artist, so that leaves roughly $0.50 to be shared between the sound recording owner (Record companies, most of the time) and a percentage paid to the artist based on their contractual percentages. In other countries the author/composer/publisher share gets discounted by the store and paid to the pertaining performance rights society.
One listen at a streaming site, let’s say Spotify in the US, brings approximately US$ 0.007219 for the digital distributor, so approximately $ 0.006136 to the sound recording owner who for example in the US will have to pay 10.50% of that to the owner of the composition, leaving $0.00549172 to be shared with the artist.
So as you can see you would have to sell approximately 92 streams to reach the price of simply one download.
Of course, you cannot compare the two in the sense. A stream is like a personal radio where you choose what song to listen to and you don’t own anything and the download you actually own but this gives you an idea as to why this is a controversial issue in spite of the fact that record companies and artists alike have embraced the streaming revolution as a media which is here to stay. But the issue is that a lot of people feel compelled to just stream and not buy.
It is a fact that sales have suffered a great deal and many artists and small independent labels find themselves struggling to survive as these revenue streams make it very difficult to recoup the investments needed to produce and market an album.
Some artists, such as Peter Gabriel or record labels such as ECM Records and many others have even blocked their recordings from being offered through streaming services, meaning that if you want their music, you should buy it. Others have decided beforehand that they will make their money on the shows so they use streaming as a mean to get fans to enjoy their music and then go to their shows. Some of the streaming services even alert you as to when your favorite artist will be in town. Other artists simply say that their streaming revenue surpasses the one form downloading, which is actually understandable as the revenue from sales of downloads has decreased dramatically due to people turning to streaming.
But as a consumer, the experience is often different than the one described above. Consumers find quite a few advantages from these services. First of all you are your own radio station; you decide what you want to listen. Some of the cons include the ability to be able to have almost all the music in the world available at your fingertip, the ability to create playlists with your favorite artists or with the albums or songs you would have never bought. For example, you like the Rolling Stones, but you never bought any of their albums because you had other preferences. Well by using these services you can actually create your own personalized Rolling Stones playlist and you would actually find yourself listening to it more often than not. Perhaps it is a list of 80s recordings, the sky is the limit. Some listeners, specially 40 and older are using these streaming services to fulfil their dreams of having their record collection completed with every release from the artist they love or like. And this is especially true since you can create a playlist with as many albums as you like but you also can delete the songs you dislike from each album on the playlist, and they stay deleted; a powerful tool indeed.
And then there is the discovery process. You will find yourself jumping from one related artist to another and soon enough you will have discovered a great deal of new music, meaning new for you as some of the discovery can take you to groups or songs from earlier years, which you never heard before. Or what about rediscovering that great song you always liked but never knew who performed until now that you find it through the related artist tool.
This brings me to another point. If you discover something you really like, then you feel inclined to buy either the CD or the downloads, and perhaps this is one of the most positive aspects of the streaming revolution, if you like something you might then want to buy it so that you can listen to it at your own pace and through different media systems. I can tell you from my own experience that I have bought a great deal of CDs and album downloads, just because I discovered them through my streaming subscription service.
And party music has never been as exciting. The playlists from people’s iPods or telephones have been replaced by the search engines on the party host’s computer streaming service or the playlists created beforehand by the host on his/hers subscription service. Music has indeed become global.
Another advantage of the streaming revolution is that it seems illegal music sharing and downloading has decreased as people can now simply send a URL corresponding to a created or existing playlist and their friends can then open it on their computers using their own subscriptions, or they can share their playlists in any social media making the discovery and sharing process legal and compelling. Some people find it easier to simply have the music on their subscription service available at all times and on any media than actually going on those annoying file sharing searching for something, which readily available on the streaming service, and downloading it with the risk of infecting their computer with a virus.
This brings me to my point concerning this blog.
From now on and when I start posting again, I will list most of my future posts using Spotify playlists (unless it is something, which is not available). That way you can join the revenue stream so needed to keep music, artists and composers alive so that we can continue to enjoy music as we’ve know it.
Streaming is here to stay and even if I resisted in the beginning, I have succumbed to the streaming revolution but please remember:
If you love the music please buy it!!
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
The Venezuelan-born pianist/composer has synthesized his classical and jazz training with the rich musical traditions of all of
1. Farmacia del Angel
2. Monsieur Petit Noir3. Song for Jacques, Pt. 1
4. Song for Jacques, Pt. 2
5. Sno' Peas
6. Forgotten Gods (sampled above)
8. Black Saint
Buy Unconditional at Amazon or
Sunday, July 17, 2011
We have all heard the crooning voice of Lou Rawls (1935 - 2006) through his biggest hits such as "You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine", “See You When I Git There” and “Lady Love”. From gospel, R&B to soul and jazz to blues and straight-up pop, Lou Rawls was a consummate master of African-American vocal music whose versatility helped him adapt to the changing musical times over and over again while always remaining unmistakably himself. Rawls' smooth, classy elegance permeated nearly everything he sang, yet the fire of his early gospel days was never too far from the surface. Rawls always remained a highly visible figure on the American cultural landscape, pursuing an acting and voice-over career in addition to his continued concert appearances, and doing extensive charity work on behalf of his consuming passion, the United Negro College Fund. “Love All Your Blues Away” is not his best album. Quite honestly I didn’t even know it existed until recently, but it’s an interesting find. Produced by the great Jay Graydon, with contributions by David Foster, it has become sort of an obscure “West Coast” classic. It embodies a mixture of typical 80’s synthesizer-pop and classic Rawls soul and jazz ballads, which seem to come from two different production camps, most likely in an effort to maintain Rawls current with pop music developments of the time and at the same time remain true to his fan base. I have not been able to locate any information on the musicians on this production and this classic has never been released on CD but there’s very decent rip to vinyl on the comments. Portions of this write-up were provided by Steve Huey from AMG.
1. Change Your Mind
2. Are You With Me
3. Love All Your Blues Away (2nd sample above)
4. Stop Me From Starting This Feeling
5. Learn To Love Again
6. Willow Weep For Me
7. We'll Be Together Again (1st sample above)
8. The Way You Look Tonight
9. It Never Entered My Mind
Sunday, June 26, 2011
Songwriter, guitarist, vocalist and producer Mac McAnally has assured his place in music history. McAnally draws from his Red Bay, Alabama birthplace, his Belmont, Mississippi hometown roots and from his Muscle Shoals musical foundation, and at the other end McAnally offers the best of his vocal abilities, songwriting, instrumental gifts and production talents. He signed his first record deal, with Ariola, at 20 and launched two singles to moderate success, "It's A Crazy World" and "Minimum Love". Kenny Chesney cut Mac's "Down The Road" and the song reached the No. 1 spot in the spring of 2009. Alabama took his "Old Flame" to No. 1 in 1981. Jimmy Buffett, Hank Williams, Jr., Reba McEntire, T.G. Sheppard, David Allan Coe, Shenandoah, Ricky Van Shelton, Charley Pride, Randy Travis and Steve Wariner are just some of the artists who have cut McAnally's songs over the years. McAnally also became an in-demand producer, along the way working with Ricky Skaggs, Restless Heart, Chris LeDoux, Jimmy Buffett, Little Feat and Sawyer Brown. Meanwhile, as a musician, his guitar and vocal skills continue to build an enviable registry of credits that include Roy Orbison, Hank Williams, Jr., Amy Grant, Jimmy Buffett, Travis Tritt, Linda Ronstadt, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Dolly Parton and many more. In 2007, McAnally was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and in 2008 the Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame followed suit. Even in the midst of creating a prodigious body of behind-the-scenes work, McAnally always continued to make his own music. He has recorded 10 albums. He was the first artist signed to David Geffen's legendary rock label Geffen Records, and that’s when he released “Nothing But The Truth” in 1983. There's just something special about this album from start to finish, the tight playing, the crisp production, the hair raising vocals and harmonies and the intelligent and poetic lyrics, which in all created a very good pop album with just a hint of country roots, where McAnally has headed ever since, culminating with McAnally's triumphant return to the airwaves with a recent No. 1 single (as a writer and an artist) and the release of his new self-penned album “Down By The River”, under a prominent Nashville label. These are all significant pieces of this breathtaking career canvas of a fully developed and self contained music maker who is confirmed as one of the most accomplished and revered creative forces in the music business. Musicians: Mac McAnally on vocals, guitars and keyboards, Duncan Cameron, Hugh McCracken, Kenny Mims and John Willis on guitars, David Hood and David Hungate (Toto) on bass, Brandon Barnes, Clayton Ivey and Steve Nathan on keyboards, Roger Hawkins and James Stroud on drums, Tom Roady on percussion, Randall Bramlett on saxophone and background vocals by Robert Byrne, Mike Cunningham, Lenny LeBlanc, Sarah McAnally & Terry Woodford. Produced by Clayton Ivey & Terry Woodford. This album came out briefly on CD and now is nowhere to be found but you can find a great rip from vinyl on the comments below.
1. How Cool
2. Middle Man
3. On The Line
4. Minimum Love
5. Lookin' For The Good Life
6. Like Your Mother
7. The City
8. Nothin' But The Truth (sampled above)
9. Other People Say
9. Other People Say
10. Dark Ages
Saturday, June 18, 2011
Vocalists Paul Hyde and guitarist-vocalist Bob Rock formed the Payolas with drummer Chris Taylor and bassist Larry Wilkins. After "China Boys" was released on their own Slophouse Records, A&M signed the band and released four albums, “No Stranger to Danger” (1982), “Hammer on a Drum” (1983), “In a Place like This” (1984) and “Here's the World for Ya” (1985). With the release of “Here's the World for Ya”, the record label decided to put lead singer Paul Hyde's name out front in an effort to hang some fame onto a single recognizable person instead of a fairly anonymous group. The tactic didn't really do much for Paul Hyde's own career or the band, though this David Foster-produced album did net the group a few hit singles, including "Stuck in the Rain", the title track and the power ballad "You're the Only Love”. This is a great pop good sounding album featuring David Foster's slick keyboards and amazing production skills, which in this case failed to bring the band onto a truly compelling platform. At the time Foster had just produced albums for Chicago (16 & 17) and The Tubes (The Completion Backward Principle & Outside Inside), which did propel those bands into higher levels. In the case of the Payolas, the album was indeed a great album but maybe at the time, Foster’s production might have contributed to rob the band of a bit of their earlier identity. You can hear traces of Chicago’s sound prominent in Foster’s contributing songwriting, the vocal harmonies and a production sound similar to that of The Tubes on “Outside Inside”. Nonetheless, this is a superb album, full of great songs, an amazing production and craftsmanship as it truly stands the test of time. After breaking up in 1985, Rock and Hyde continued on, releasing a popular single in 1987 called "Dirty Water." Paul Hyde left for a solo career in 1989; Bob Rock later joined the band Rockhead and then became one of the most sought-after producers in the music business. Musicians: Paul Hyde on vocals, Bob Rock on guitars (he also recorded and mixed the album), Chris Taylor on drums and Larry Wilkins on bass with contributions from David Foster and Christopher Livingston on keyboards, Christopher Allen on harmonica, Mark Rousseau on saxophone, Richard Marx, Paul Janz, Henri Lorieau, Sugar Jones, Mark Lafrance, Todd Smallwood and David Foster on background vocals, Steve Porcaro (Toto) on synth programming and horn arrangements by Jerry Hey. "20th Century Masters: The Best of the Payolas" collects 4 of the 10 songs from this album, "Stuck in the Rain", “It Must Be Love”, “Here’s The World” and “You're the Only Love" and singles and album tracks, including "Eyes of a Stranger", "China Boys", "Never Said I Love You" and "Dirty Water (Rock and Hyde)”. This compilation focuses more on the smoother, poppier side of the band rather than the earlier, punkier work, making it a good overview of this somewhat overlooked band's career. The rest of the album can be found on a link within the comments from a great rip from vinyl.
1. Struck in the Rain
2. You're the Only Love
3. It Won't Be You
4. Cruel Hearted Lovers
5. It Must Be Love
6. Little Boys
7. All That I Want
8. Here's the World (sampled above)
9. Rhythm Slaves
10. Never Leave This Place
Buy 20th Century Masters: The Best of the Payolas at Amazo
Saturday, June 11, 2011
Lodgic was formed by childhood friends Michael Sherwood (keyboards, backing vocals) and Jimmy Haun (guitar) with Gary Starnes (drums) and Mike Hulsey (keyboards), Guy Allison (keyboards) and Michael's younger brother Billy Sherwood (bass and vocals). They recorded their debut and sole album "Nomadic Sands", released in 1985 on A&M Records. The album was co-produced by Steve Porcaro and David Paich (both members of Toto) and producer/recording engineer Tom Knox. “Nomadic Sands” is heavily influenced by progressive icons Yes and by pop craftsmen Toto with a dose of typical 80’s sounds, but the result is a fine debut for a short lived band with plenty of good songs and a great production. Although the album failed to chart in the U.S., the first single "Lonely Man" was featured in the movie Prince of Bel Air, starring Mark Harmon and Kirstie Alley. While Lodgic's output was limited, its legacy was in future collaborations. Lodgic later evolved into the band “World Trade”, which released two albums featuring Billy Sherwood and Guy Allison, “World Trade” and “Euphoria”. Both Sherwoods and Haun later worked with Yes, all three appearing on Yes’ album “Union”. Billy Sherwood and Haun later worked together in The Key, The Chris Squire Experiment and Circa and even performed live extensively with Yes. This album has been released on CD by a German company named YesterRock.
1. Romance (sampled above)
2. Step Back
3. Lonely Man
4. Red Light
5. Rise and Fall
6. Push So Hard
7. In the Cards
8. Nomadic Sands
9. Linda Sue
10. Bringing Me Back
Buy it from YesterRock
Buy it from YesterRock
Saturday, June 4, 2011
Novo Combo was a rock group which enjoyed some popularity in the early 1980s. The initial lineup was Pete Hewlett on vocals and guitars, Stephen Dees on vocals and bass, Jack Griffith on guitar and drummer Michael Shrieve who played with Santana from the very beginning. Guitarist Carlos Rios replaced Jack Griffith on the band's second album. The band scored minor hits in 1981 with the songs "Up Periscope" and "City Bound" from their debut album “Novo Combo”. “Animation Generation” was their second and last album. Although the style was a product of the era and sort of influenced by The Police, Novo Combo really stood out from the rest, due to its true musicianship and the group interaction brought together by the long live-performing history and great writing skills of its members. Lead singer and bassist Stephen Dees also performed with many other acts such as Hall and Oates and he would later form his own independent pop/art rock band Bandees. Lead guitarist Jack Griffith jammed out with Mick Jagger, Carlos Santana, Gary Moore and now owns a recording studio. Novo Combo's singer and guitarist Pete Hewlett toured with Billy Joel, Carly Simon, Joe Jackson, Julian Lennon, Amy Grant, and Eric Carmen and he made international news while performing with Billy Joel who brought a fully-staged rock production to the Soviet Union in 1985 as part of the first live rock radio broadcast in Soviet history. Michael Shrieve was the original drummer for Santana and at age nineteen, was the youngest performer at Woodstock. He helped create Santana’s first eight albums. Shrieve has collaborated alongside Mick Jagger, George Harrison, Pete Townsend, Steve Winwood, and Andy Summers among others and he continues to produce music for film & TV and many other projects. “Animation Generation” has never been released on CD or downloads but there is a great rip from vinyl, which you can find in the comments below.
1. Animation Generation
2. Too Long Gone
3. Slow Fade (sampled above)
4. Keep Your Love Alive
5. Anyone Can See
6. Welcome Innervision
7. Chained Man
8. Follow the Love
9. She Runs
10. No Wonder