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Archive for the ‘Inspirational Music’ Category

Legendary musician Kitaro continues the time honored tradition of bringing his ageless instrumental classics to millions of fans worldwide. The year 2012 is after all, much like another other year in the past, where fans of popular new age music can find many selections of the best new albums and songs all from a man who goes by the name Kitaro.

The fascinating story of Kitaro is legendary. Beginning his music career over 30 years ago, Kitaro’s intriguing journey to prominence arose with the release of his first album entitled Astral Voyage back in 1978.

Crossing many milestones along the way, Kitaro is a true innovator who remains in the forefront of the music recording industry today, just as he was the vanguard in the new age music scene years ago.

Fans of Kitaro know his discography has not only increased in volume, but has increased in popularity as time goes by too. In recent years to the present, some of the best new music from Kitaro has progressed in diversity more than ever, but the admiration for his work is at all times constant. It may leave many of us wondering what motivates or inspires him.

Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai – Volume 4 from 2010 is one of his best albums in the Ku-Kai series. The 4 CD Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai album collection is inherently monumental, and in an exclusive class by itself. The motivation for Kitaro’s Ku-Kai series as many fans may know arose after the global events on the fateful day of September 11, 2001.

On 9/11 Kitaro was on a jet from Japan traveling en route to Los Angeles when the transcontinental flight was diverted to Hawaii for 5 days due to the tragedy. It was during this time of disbelief and uncertainty Kitaro envisioned the Ku-Kai series as a means of uniting the world by music embracing a universal message of peace.

Peace thru music is not a new concept on the surface, but I, like other people find his personal belief and inner conviction with producing Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai, an honorable concept of peace and unity that is profound nonetheless.

The Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai series is an earthly travel that transports the listener to 88 sacred temples located on Shikoku Island in Japan. The music is a serene journey in its own right. The true to life excursion made over 1100 years ago on Shikoku Island in Japan endures to this day.

The music in Kitaro’s modern day journey has an itinerary of refined harmony made for reflection. Every instrumental song on the series is comprised of bells from one of the holy temples, integrated into the series with Kitaro’s internal vision of peaceful harmony in music and in life shown externally. It may be why many consider  Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai series the best new albums by Kitaro.

Nearly every day I describe an artist’s album and its qualities, but rarely do I focus or reveal the intrinsic motivation of an artist’s instrumental creation. Ku-Kai series Vol. 1, Vol. 2, Vol. 3 & Vol. 4 earned Kitaro a GRAMMY® Nomination in the Best New Age Album category, which basically speaks for itself. The admiration for Kitaro and his music that unites the world is, of all things, real and constant.

Sacred Journey of Ku-Kai  – Vol. 4 has 8 songs titled; Lotus Mountain, Yakushi, Magic Seeds, Reflection Of Water, South Wind, Circle Pray, Requiem & Ritual Winds. I have the privilege of interviewing Kitaro in the near future. During our interview I hope to reveal the central element that inspires one of the top instrumental music producers today.

Visit the Domo Music Group Kitaro pages to sample or purchase Kitaro’s music, and then visit DomoMusicGroup.com. Read Kitaro’s Ku-Kai page at Domo Music Group for more about this special series. Photos courtesy domomusicgroup.com.

Jon Anderson has a new Christmas song called Give Hope available as an MP3 download, just in time to begin the holiday season in style. Speaking of style, if you look at the photo you will see a trendy songbird on the album cover wearing a red scarf. It is a photo illustration, but this bird is one of the most fashionable Robins ever!

Give Hope is a new revision of Jon Anderson’s 3 Ships (22nd Anniversary Edition). I couldn’t find very much information on his new song release but there are plenty of locations where you can sample Jon Anderson’s Give Hope. It features Jon naturally, along with a children’s choir which really adds to the festive atmosphere.

This song is a special Christmas wish from Jon Anderson!

Visit jonanderson.com and sample on his music page, and his iTunes page. Watch the 2011 song video of Jon Anderson’s Christmas song – Give Hope song at YouTube.

Album cover photo illustration courtesy jonanderson.com.

AOMusic has a beautiful World Fusion music release after their up-and-coming albums Twirl & Grow Wild which share the identical trait of being lively, world-beat music rhythms you are sure to love. To me, what makes AOMusic special, aside from the beautiful melodies, are the central performers themselves knowing every artist is a veteran music professional.

AOMusic’s new release is enthusiastically titled – and Love Rages On! If the colorful album cover and title doesn’t immediately catch your attention, the 9 brilliant songs that integrate World Fusion music with inspiring children’s choir will. Already familiar with AOMusic, I am excited to tell you all about this special group!

Richard Gannaway, Jay Oliver, and Miriam Stockly are the leading artists in AOMusic. Between the three artist’s careers, they have worked with popular music celebrities like; Sheryl Crow, The Eagles, Joe Walsh, Queen, Freddie Mercury, George Michael, Chaka Khan, Jimmy Buffett, Celine Dion, Bonnie Raitt, Tina Turner, David Arkenstone and Mike Oldfield. Believe it or not this all-star music celebrity lineup is a partial list, but it gives you a pretty good idea about the high level of quality these artists are recognized for. And there is much more!

AOMusic shares a genuine message of unity with – and Love Rages On! – It is on this release where ethnic harmonies of children’s choirs from four continents are united with superb world music rhythms and contemporary instrumentals.

Founding artist Richard Gannaway also sings vocals and plays stringed instruments. Jay Oliver performs keyboards and synthesizers. Miriam Stockley, who is a key member, sings vocals on this release after joining Richard Gannaway and Jay Oliver during the time of their second album Grow Wild which went Top 5 on Zone Music Reporter’s Top 100 airplay chart.

And Love Rages On! – is a colorful and vibrant album that will make your heart soar! AO Music takes intricate World Music rhythms and beautiful choir music to the highest level. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if AOMusic – and Love Rages On! – is the recipient of one or more “Best Album of the Year Awards for 2011” when review publicists and music sites announce their best album awards at the beginning of 2012.

You will recognize the beauty of this release even more if you are familiar with lead vocalist Miriam Stockley, who makes a grand impression on Adiemus releases. Miriam Stockley ascertains herself an amazing talent with AO Music.  Other essential members in – and Love Rages On! –  are Sandeep Chowta who plays Indian flute tracks, and regular contributing artists Andy Georges (strings), George Bernardo (percussion), and Doug Lunn (bass guitar).

AOMusic and its central performers contribute more than a slogan of international unity in their music, having been involved with the projects AOMUSIC 4 HAITI campaign, the global benefit Project Peace On Earth, and the Beijing Olympic Committee by composing the theme music for the 2008 Summer Olympiad.

And Love Rages On! – Genuinely support their values while beautifully communicating their “One People, One World” perspective of solidarity, which couldn’t be more appropriate given the current social issues experienced worldwide. In terms of the unifying harmonies you will hear on their release, I believe you will find enough inspiration to go around it will make the whole world sing!

The children and boys choirs featured on this release are; CRC Children’s Choir (Beijing, P.R.C.), Martve Boys’ Choir (Tbilisi, Peoples Republic of Georgia), Bishop Bavin St. George’s Children’s Choir (Johannesburg, South Africa), Bishop Bavin St. George’s Children’s Choir (Johannesburg, South Africa), Chorus of Light (Orlando, FL), and Rainbow Mountain Children’s School (Asheville, NC).

Visit the aomusic.com homepage. There is a 10% donation on all music downloads at the AOMUSIC 4 HAITI campaign. Find more on my page for AOMusic. Photos are courtesy aomusic.com.

Our Last First Time by Sue Brescia.      

Sue Brescia, a New Age, Adult Contemporary singer, songwriter, and composing musician from Middletown, Rhode Island, recently released her second CD, Our Last First Time. By composing her original arrangements with simplicity, beauty and breadth, the 16 music compositions, title song and animated video are like a music symphony dedicated to the love shared between two people, even beyond the life experience of sorrow and loss.

The contemporary instrumentals in Our Last First Time are appropriately named after each line of every verse from the title song to encompass the full spectrum of the CD, which articulately capture emotions ranging from lightheartedness to an introspective tranquility. It is through the masterful blending of piano, woodwinds and strings that the heartfelt quality of her arrangements are conveyed.

Sue Brescia began her career as a singer in a top 40 band at age 18, while also performing in various cabarets and theaters in New England. After several years in Summer Stock Theater, a cabaret performance for the Royal Family, and an appearance at New York’s Catch A Rising Star, Sue Brescia began writing songs and produced her first CD release, Hope Rising in 2007. It was from this CD release that her song Forget You Never was listed among the International Top 40 according to the International Association of Independent Recording Artists.

The song Passage of Time from her Hope Rising CD, was another achievement for her after having been selected from more than 350,000 artists worldwide to appear with Natalie Merchant, Carly Simon and Livingston Taylor in contributing to the Life in the Years, and More Life in the Years CDs, a compilation of music to benefit the Alzheimer’s Association.

Our Last First Time comprises the collection of Sue’s life experiences and mortality’s reasoning which has sculpted her into the artist she is today. It is where her fervency for music originates. Writing lyrics to a song, composing an arrangement, all come from the core of her being, from a spiritual place. Sue’s album was also selected among the top entries and runner up status in the December 2010 round during the Song of the Year song and lyric competition.

Visit suebrescia.com and find at her Amazon.com page. Visit Sue’s YouTube channel. Album art courtesy Sue Brescia.

If you have ever heard the facts about our universe that there are over 1 billion galaxies other than our own, and there are more stars in the sky than grains of sand on every shore, then you know these truths about our universe make the interstellar space above us seem infinite and hard to envision.

Fred Thrane from Sandpoint Idaho has incorporated those fact based linear notes on the inside CD cover of his debut album Angels of the Sun, but in a related topic much closer to home and easier to picture is the like a grain of sand approach in which he composed and launched his first instrumental album. Presenting his exclusive talents on CD for his first official introduction, Angels of the Sun yields an expansive diversity in what you would expect to hear on a debut album, so it is a release that can be appreciated by a variety of people.

Angels of the Sun features diverse styles ranging from New Age, Flamenco and Contemporary, which likewise ascertain his aptitude as an accomplished guitarist of various styles. Relying on his strong background as both a student and music educator, I thought Fred Thrane has released a wonderful first album. Everything began when he picked up the guitar for the first time during his teen years studying Classical and Flamenco guitar.

The next phase of his education was Classical Guitar instruction during college years at UC Santa Barbra. Fred later transferred to Cal State Hayward, where he majored in guitar and earned a master’s degree in music, with a specialty in Classical Guitar. For the next 5 years he took lessons from distinguished guitarist Rey de la Torre. Fred Thrane then reached a turning point when he began his teaching career as Professor of Music at San Jose State University and Foothill College while educating students in Classical Guitar. It was during this time period he had composed some of the melodies for this release.

Angels of the Sun features 9 engaging songs, and brings with it the foresight and experience of a music professional that has devoted much of his life acquiring the skills needed to produce an album which is singular in its existence yet further reaching in its appeal among many.

Dennis Murphy and Jim Norris are two performers who provide accompaniment on this release.  While Denis plays bass and Jim contributes the variety of percussion parts, both complement the nucleus of Fred’s composition by magnifying his melodic theme, and then adding a good measure of vibrant harmony of their own.

The more extravagant Flamenco styled songs Big Sur, Fandango in Four, Farruca & Moraga Raga were my favorites. Like most songs on this instrumental album, you will find they are quite lively and up-tempo with great percussion enhancements which are in harmony with the energetic atmosphere one would expect to hear on Flamenco music. The Title Song, Dawn Dancer & The Third Heaven are more serene in tempo and rhythm, but they too are engaging and consistent in theme.

Finding a forte in blending New Age, Flamenco and Classical styles into a single orchestration, Fred Thrane is a music professional who shines on his first release by his diverse experience as a guitarist. More than capable of arranging a select number of music influences into a single improvisation of wonder, I can see where Angels of the Sun will please a wide variety of musical tastes. In the end, this makes his first release seem more like a universal commodity.

Visit the fredthrane.com homepage to find out more. Sample or purchase at his CDBaby.com page & Amazon.com page.

Hubble Telescope cover image courtesy NASA, B.D. Moore and J.J. Hester.

Picture yourself as a singer on stage in front of a large crowd of people with all eyes upon you. Now, even if you are well accustomed to performing on stage, and are within your comfort zone in front of an audience and do well, keeping audiences entertained year after year is of course a completely different story. To survive and remain a long-term success, everything is dependent on your abilities as a vocalist and the quality of the lyrical message you wish to deliver.

Jon Anderson, former lead vocalist and lyrical messenger for the group Yes, is while I write this review, standing on a stage entertaining audiences during tour venues in the United States, Canada, and Mexico, which is in support of his concept album – Survival & Other Stories. What I find most impressive about Jon Anderson is the fact he has been not only capturing, but keeping a firm grip on audiences with his music for the past 5 decades, and so it goes without saying that Jon Anderson is a wonderfully gifted vocalist with a exciting message people truly want to hear over and over again.

It was during my recent 2011 interview with Jon Anderson where he specified that while on stage, concert goers would hear original Yes songs, along with Jon & Vangelis songs. In addition he articulates the biographical aspects about his life to an audience, what the songs mean and how they were created, along with singing songs from his newest release – Survival & Other Stories. Jon also acknowledged the importance his fans are to him, which are of course the lifeblood for any artist.

Jon Anderson is a music superstar, even to those other than his most loyal fans who regard him as one of the greatest music icons past and present. While true he is best known as the former lead singer and key lyricist of the Progressive Rock band Yes, his prolific solo music career continues to be as positive and significant today as it was years ago, when people like myself were buying his vinyl records!

Jon Anderson’s influence and starring role in music over five decades is legendary, and one can say Jon’s divine voice and lyrical message is clearly unforgettable. Presently, it is estimated over 38 million records were sold during his years as the dynamic lead vocalist with Yes, and his successful solo career to date. Even today people are discovering the earlier works from Yes, in addition to his numerous collaborations with other top artists, and personalized solo projects.

Survival & Other Stories is a concept album Jon created after he nearly perished from a serious illness. The silver lining began after his recovery when this unique project began to take shape. During this time period, Jon published a message on his website inviting artists to submit their music for this new endeavor.

When musicians from all corners of the world turned in their ethnic music over the internet the substance of something beautiful was born. Jon then mixed, composed, and co-produced with wife Jane Anderson the first of three concept albums, Survival & Other Stories which has a collection of 11 songs with wonderful orchestrations unified with Jon’s heartfelt vocal energies clearly articulated both musically and lyrically as optimistic and positive.

The first song New New World which opens with bold drum cadence, snare taps, and dancing strings makes a clear distinction this release is like no other yet his lyrical propensity and alto tenor range vocals reassure the listener this release will be just as impressive as the melodies he released decades ago. Unbroken Sprit is a moving piece with a light percussion backed melody, while Love Of The Life & Big Buddha Song touch upon politics and religion with spirited instrumentals backing verses of inspiration.

The blend of harmonic ethnicities continues in the moderately arranged melodies Understanding Truth, Effortlessly, Love And Understanding & Sharpening The Sword. All songs are identifiable in a sense by vocal recognition, yet each has a varying metrical rhythm and unique melody which gives every song a singular timbre and atmosphere. Gentle introspective moments are prevalent qualities in the more serene songs Incoming, Just One Man & Cloudz.

Jon Anderson without a doubt has a wonderful story to share, and in the auditory sense, his new release has a personalized point of view that comes across as musical magic. And while many artists have abandoned their music careers or quietly faded away by stepping off and never returning to the stage, Jon Anderson has clearly reached the expert level while entertaining his audiences onstage and in the studio. As it turns out, 2011 now appears to be an exciting year for everyone.

On the 10 page CD cover booklet are all song lyrics and a memoir style narrative from Jon. The global musicians listed on specific songs are; Jamie Dunlap, Peter Kiel, Jann Castor, Dan Spollen, Kevin Shima, Stefan Poddell, Steve Layton, Jeremy Cubert, Christophe Lebled, Ryan Fraley, Daniel Reinker, and Paul Quinn.

Visit jonanderson.com for music news and concert info. Survival & Other Stories can be pre-ordered from Gonzo Multimedia and Amazon.com prior to June 6 release date. Read our 2011 interview article on our pages dedicated to Jon Anderson.

Concert photo courtesy jonanderson.com. Big Stock Photo – dws.

When you hear New Age Contemporary Instrumental music having great rhythms and a wonderful upbeat atmosphere expertly blended with beautiful electronic melodies, this may be a promising sign you are listening to one of many quality songs produced by Davol!

Davol has just released Good Sign which decisively aligns itself to symbolize my description above and become an encouraging assertion to those in the music world already familiar with his first name artist title they are indeed listening to someone known for producing top quality music.

Successful in many aspects of his life, after obtaining a Ph.D. in 1989 his earlier career as a medical researcher and microbiologist were judiciously shelved in 1996 when he began a commercial venture producing multimedia music. During the same year his debut Mystic Waters became another personal success and made it to # 15 on the Billboard New Age Chart, where it remained a lengthy 25 weeks.

The decision to pursue a full time music career was fantastic news to those who already knew of his premium quality melodies, plus the worldwide usage of his songs involving television, radio, video and numerous multimedia production scores has clearly magnified this proficient artisan to many more.

Good Sign is an album that upon closer examination is rapidly multiplying in popularity and already making waves with his fans since the April 2010 release date. ZMR has set at # 3 for the month of April, so another positive finding for the very latest from Davol.  The 4 additional albums A Day Like No Other, Open Book, Paradox & Nature Of The Beast are all relatives to his current yet each one is a natural variation that evolves into their individual class, each interrelated by a characteristic source of fascinating drama.

Davol has exceeded his artistic intentions with Good Sign and the early reactions granted to Davol’s progressive album does replicate the characteristic source of fascination one will find in his entire discography. Good Sign is symmetrical to Davol’s principal expression of innovative quality music nicely accented with inspiring drama.

Scarborough Days is the first song of 8 tracks that gives you a clear indication of the momentum and direction of this definitive album, along with the resulting positive influences his entire discography symbolizes. This lively song highlights the optimistic upbeat feel and beautiful keyboard synthesizer melodies those who collect his albums know so well and treasure.

Good Sign ( Title Song ) is more moderate by a light ambient feel that will brush a dark cloudy day away for anyone and promptly replace it with a bright sunshiny day full of color simply by the rich interwoven keyboard melody.

Truth 2010 is an electronic Dance / Club influences remix featured during the popular online video now available on this album. A heavier percussion tempo prepares the groove rhythms before exploration into deeper shades of electronic intensity and is very much in time when comparing to his conceptual Truth Video which captures the superficial and unbalanced influences often portrayed in television media.

Nautikos is another favorite by displaying a natural sophistication and contemporary elegance given the positively upbeat keyboard melody blending notes to perfection. This song steadily integrates harmonic spectrums in sound while harboring the glowing standard of inspiration Davol can readily achieve, making this album and his entire music collection an exceptional find for anyone.

Those familiar with his captivating music have another reason to celebrate. Newcomers can experience this sweeping source of fascination for themselves and learn why everyone is so excited about this promising new discovery by Davol.

Find the album Good Sign at DavolMusic.com or music by Davol at CDBaby.com. BigStockPhoto.com – Yakobchuk.

Vicki Logan is a musician who not only creates great music, but every song she has produced over the years reflects her heart and true spirit within each piece.   Vicki is a New Age artist who incorporates Pop, Jazz, Rhythm & Blues, and other genre influences that blend into memorable works of music many like myself find inspirational.

Enlisting the help of Randy Gildersleeve, Andy LaCasse, Peter O’Gorman, Matt Fink, and others to produce built with pride award winning music, every album has a personal touch I am certain you will find inspiring too. 

The 4 albums that chronicle each advancing stage in her music career include, Chasing Dreams, Finding My Way, The Ride, & The Journey To The Places In My Soul, which is now listed in the Top 100 New Age Albums for radio play in 2009.

Vicki Logan is also a creative graphic designer and has been busy launching her new website lately, but plans are underway to produce another album before long, and many like myself are highly anticipating her next release.

If you have missed the chance to hear Vicki Logan’s music on Internet Radio, we encourage you to visit her brand new website VickiLogan.com to sample or purchase her music, and sample her current release The Journey To The Places In My Soul at CDBaby.com.  There are 4 album reviews I have written, and our interview together can be read when you visit my pages dedicated to Vicki Logan.

Here is an album review quote I wrote about Vicki’s inspiring music, and the song video below of Don’t Be Afraid, is just one of many classic songs you will find memorable. Photo Copyright Vicki Logan.

Vicki Logan is an excellent example of what can be achieved when a talented artist shares a part of themselves by putting their heart and spirit into the creation of their music.  Incorporating elements of New Age, Pop, Jazz, and R & B influences provides the listener a fresh perspective with each classic piece she produces.  After discovering the music of Vicki Logan, you will find yourself recalling her inspiring melodies over and over in your mind daily.      Blog Host – John P. Olsen

Mars Lasar is one of the first musicians many people recall when thinking of nature inspired music. His music with a dedication to protect the heartland is a constant reminder of this gifted artist and his ability to promptly place you there.

Mars Lasar has just released another nature inspired project entitled Tahoe Spirit. This release really puts you on location, in a sharp salute that is a natural acquisition with his large fan base. This release should be of interest for all who appreciate his artistic creations gently carved from our native habitats of woodlands and ecosystems.

The time enduring Eleventh Hour Series, Olympic National Park, & Yosemite: Valley Of The Giants, are all earlier landmarks of his dedication to conservation music that, sure as our world turns, are steadily becoming more relevant each passing day. Every one is a great album with a wonderful theme.

Tahoe Spirit is his newest declaration into New Age/World/Nature genres to virtually guide you one heartbeat away from the Great North Western Sierra Nevada Wilderness, Lake Tahoe, and deep into Washoe Indian Territory, in a trail blazing expedition illustrating the territorial lands that are a vital part of our American Heritage.

David Rose is a distinguished talent from the band Painted Raven, and principal performer on Traditional Native Flutes, while a divine new age vocalist likewise join Mars Lasar on piano, bass, keyboards, and programming. It is during their unparalleled journey together where everyone can become a part of, and be a witness to the vast open wilderness, monumental mountain horizons, and the pristine waters that reverently hold the secrets of this regional gemstone.

Mars Lasar employs a careful artisans approach while composing all of his inspired by nature music, making a lasting impression on you every time. The effective result of a delicate polish given to Tahoe Spirit results in a fine grain finish, directing you to an exceptional visit to the pristine beauty of our native woodlands all Americans can call home.

Tahoe Spirit makes a bold first impact of 10 song legacies known with a deeply moving and beautifully synthesized Tahoe Legends. Beginning with a grand opening, this Epic song makes one quickly realize the musical terrain is going to be firmly held on a plateau of picturesque beauty. The woodwinds David Rose provides are encircled by percussion effects and heart pounding stanzas that Mars expertly recreates during your guided visits to memorable discoveries in music.

The Great Spirit has more of a calming presence by woodwind interludes and echoing drum rhythms that noticeably accent an inherent note by note recollection about a past civilization of people who are an important part of our heritage and who once called it home.

Washoe Meadows has the attribute as a gentle song with a relaxing melody, articulating a pleasing sense of atmosphere, perfect for those seeking an adventurous ambiance where gentle streams and natural forestry are a realistic part of the visual beauty you will hear in this total music experience.

Lake In the Sky gives a peaceful moment of reflection by woodwinds gentle tones and dreamy melody shown by a soft tranquil flow between stanzas, while bass and drums add a range of depth by the subtle undercurrents.

Alpine Meadows makes a heartfelt impression on me every time I listen to it, in an uplifting song where the bond of this trio shines so very brightly while standing together in musical unity. Mars places an Epic, yet comforting climate controlled feel on keyboards that instantly takes you there. David instills the calming winds with haunting flute passages recognizing the presence of the people living before us there, and the new age vocalist sings a soft radiant melody, glowing like the sun by her wonderful declaration to remind everyone why we become united there.

Tahoe Spirit greatly captures your attention by a bold testimonial about our native lands worth preserving, and is a wonderful presentation from talented artists united in heart, mind, and spirit, who give you the feeling that you also belong and can go there too.

Visit MarsLasar.com to sample and purchase the Tahoe Spirit album. Picture Copyright Big Stock Photo – mantonino.

If you are one in the multitude of dreamers with an ambitious goal in mind, permit me to tell you about one musician’s personal story for reaching goals since she is a source of inspiration for those who already know and listen to her music.

Vicki Logan first began without formal music lessons, having only a dream of becoming an accomplished musician someday. Her spirited philosophy of believing in yourself, boldly taking the risks, and then dreaming big since anything is possible, has proved to be more than just a mere statement about turning dreams into reality.

Vicki is now an accomplished and outstanding musician taking her own advice for years by creating a heartfelt 4 album portfolio where each album title and theme chronicles the subsequent chapters of her achievements along the way. Chasing Dreams began the first stage for her success and easily set a high watermark for future albums of Finding My Way, The Ride, & The Journey To the Places In My Soul, along with a much anticipated album now in progress.

Chasing Dreams reached nomination for Album of the Year in regional music charts, then her subsequent albums were established in NAR / ZMR Top 100 charts and abundant online radio airplay on AOL, Sirius Radio, and XM Satellite, grew to reach around 1000 station worldwide.

Writing the original music on Chasing Dreams, along with playing piano, strings and flute, Vicki enlists several exceptional musicians with co-producer Randy Gildersleeve on acoustic guitar, banjo & mandolin, Andy LaCasse on bass & electric guitar, and Peter O’Gorman as percussionist.

Change is the only true constant in life. Instead of fighting it, we should always look for the advantages to change, and then use them to our benefit. In the end, dreams are only dreams unless you are willing to make them a reality.     New Age Music Artist – Vicki Logan.

Chasing Dreams is a 10 song classic storybook of concertos, with chapter one titled as The Only Way To Say Goodbye. This first song reveals feelings of hope for those who have lost a loved one by a moving piano piece that marks the first song notation as a memorable one. Respectful by turning each page with a soft finger to key touch, drama crescendos with every step until an emotional full chord melody is expressed, reaching a finale that I can only describe as heartfelt and poetic. The Reprise version offers another impression and moving portrayal of this exquisite melody.

An Epoch Of Childhood represents growing to adulthood by a wonderful piano opus enhanced with guitar entries and percussion, reaffirming the positive vibes one feels from her entire album collection.

Highway 8 From Minnesota To Michigan is a piano and woodwind ballad that navigates at a mid tempo pace with flute passages describing the event as one of amazement, becoming one of your narrator’s favorites.

Beautiful by the emotion rich drama, this song is composed to stay in your mind and I do find myself recalling it often. It’s just one of the positive aspects of her classic New Age albums.

Title song Chasing Dreams is another beautiful piece to bookmark in Vicki’s story of dreams. Soft wind chimes herald in a thoughtful piano and guitar duo that unite in refined stages until the deepest emotions emerge.

The classic piano notes chord phrasing is pleasing not only to the ear, but to the heart and mind, having a wonderful rhythm that conveys only positive sentiments. The Reprise version gives another chance to hear this pleasing song in the same key, yet in a slightly faster tempo defined by synthesizer background that sheds light on this new perspective and classically displays her artistic originality.

The Hopper Song is a lively number that showcases the skills of all musicians starting with an upbeat percussion that leaps into expressive piano chords, while mandolin and banjo strum their engaging scripts with confidence. This song reminded me that writing songs to inspire people is what Vicki Logan’s music is all about.  It made me picture the multitudes of optimistic dreamers out there also becoming a success, in their own personal storybook of dreams.

Vicki Logan’s story of inspiration can be read at VickiLogan.com. Read reviews for her albums including our recent artist interview and discover even more on my pages for Vicki Logan. Picture Copyright Bigstockphoto.com – trebeb.

Some of the artists I write about find inspiration by discovering the scenic wonders here on Earth. Natural compositions with peaceful and majestic music themes from an individual and local perspective can indeed be very inspirational.

Ontario Canada is the geographical location of a New Age artist who brings a beautiful listening experience to a worldwide audience. Showing a fine music observation of the abundant natural beauty that surrounds everyone each day, here is a nice album where time was given and attention was paid while orchestrating their scenic recollections.

Bruce Mitchell is a composing musician blessed with a natural talent for bringing out the best of what mother Earth has to offer with the just released New Earth Goddess album on the Millennium Label. His music compositions have a great distinction of being the feature TV soundtracks for Nature Watch & The Global Family in Japan’s multiple language International Public Broadcast program (NHK) becoming a prime time success in Europe, among other countries.

Bruce Mitchell first began with earlier albums Hidden Pathways, Dancing on the Edge, and The Gathering, relying on rich orchestra movements to translate his natural music abilities. Celtic Destiny & Celtic Sanctity are also consistent with his prior work and shown with just a touch of Celtic influence and now leads to his current release.

New Earth Goddess is an album with 10 song exploration into the hearts and minds of ten charitable goddesses who provide a (song subtitle) depicting the gift endowment held within each individual song. Bruce once again engages his friend and world class flutist Ron Korb, who likewise solidifies the project playing concert flute, bass flute, and 2 exotic bamboo woodwinds Dizi & Bansuri, with both instruments having ancient origins.

New Earth Goddess by composer Bruce Mitchell and co-musician Ron Korb represent skillful craftsmanship in composition and piano skills of one, along with equally strong woodwind skills of another. Their performance gives a dramatic looking through the lens glimpse into the naturalistic side of music by powerful symphonic expression, choir entries, and harmony rich vocals.

Flowing song Athena grants (inner wisdom) by the brass horns that open eyes, ears, and minds to a mid tempo classic presentation of piano and flute melody backed by an orchestra landscape full of strings and winds that exhibit nature as pure scenic ambiance.

The display of lighter airy moments at times nicely build into full thunderous entries, symbolic that smaller streams do trickle into larger rivers, which then flow with increasing momentum until reaching the greater oceans.

Persephone vocalizes a moderate pace in (transformation) where changing North to South seasonal winds are recalled by moving harmonic vocals. Gentle peaceful winds are heard by flute and piano duo whispering in timely unison with the lighter vocals. Brigit implies a more noble statement in (stand for your beliefs) with deeper percussion and melodic piano passages alongside bagpipes, oboe, and woodwinds, while Aeracura opens with a much quieter beginning to (unfold & blossom) considering the melody soon orchestrates in a dramatic ascension, opening right along in time with fragrant vocals.

Damara suggests a gentler mindset for (guiding children) by lighter tone in flute melody set behind piano chords and soft xylophone runs, implying a gentler hand is always wisest when caring for the younger ones. Maeve (cycles and rhythms) in an epic way when piano and flute take on a dramatic performance with one another, creating a natural ebb and flow between the two musicians, leading to the conclusion that Bruce Mitchell and Ron Korb have succeeded by becoming a constant and enduring source of inspiration while performing their music orchestration, much like the Earth itself.

Visit newearthgoddess.net homepage to sample/purchase, or at Bruce Mitchell’s Amazon.com page or CDBaby.com page.

Picture copyright Bigstockphoto.com – PosterPuppy.

Since everyone must make life transitions whether they really want to or not, let me tell you about a musician from Fresno, California who has a successful history of making life transitions himself, and can perhaps offer you and I some insight on the subject of change.

Michael Stribling is an award winning New Age music composer who readily embraces change having already made many positive adjustments in his lifetime.

The newest album release entitled The Promise smoothly arrives at the next stage of his long career in music with a look and feel that confirms and conveys an admirable composite of electronic and ambient music.

His transitions include earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Music, work as a radio announcer, performing in theatre musicals and playing percussion for Johnny Mathis just for starters.

Michael Stribling’s story gets even better since after becoming a successful Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist offering help to those who needed a hand with their transitions, he returned to his love of music and formed Leela (Divine Play) Music.

Michael Stribling’s return to music is beyond more than just promising since Michael’s first album release Songs of Hope and Healing made it to #1 on the Top 100 in the Zone Music Reporter charts, securing the Electronic Lifestyle Music Award in 2006 and  Out of the Darkness, Into the Light, lit up the #2 spot on the Top 100 in January having 2 nominations for the Zone Music Reporter Lifestyle Music Award in  2007. Another Day in Paradise  is indeed praiseworthy, while Love, Light, and Water, earned ZMR nomination for Best Relaxation/Meditation Album in 2008, making each day even brighter for this independent recording artist with an optimistic outlook toward the challenge of change.

Michael Stribling has clearly made many successful transitions in his musical lifetime, giving him a first hand perspective to help others cope with change. The positive yes responses shown in his earlier music and in this brand new release only proves his natural composing abilities for bringing hope and inspiration to others.

The Promise  is Michael Stribling’s newest album to deliver 14 original songs like his newest composition in musical ambiance is an autobiography of his attitude, comprehension, and inner thoughts drawn from daily observations, then transcribed into beautiful music.

Beginning with Bright New Day a crisp new perspective is announced by abundant keyboard activity that vividly lights the occasion while percussion distinctively beats beside a synthesizer full of energy,  creating much animation by the opening number to forecast what lies beyond in future melodies. Daily Living  likewise moves right along in style and tempo by the upper register bell tones that counteract with middle range melody like the positive vibes given in  Angular Reasoning  and the uplifting theme projected during All In Good Time. 

Like many songs in his earlier projects, The Promise album does take timely breaks into the deeper hues of contemplation and reflection.

Forgotten Dreams  exemplifies this apparent yin and yang transition to a more down to earth reasoning with a single oboe tone melody bordered by a mesmerizing and hazy background, touching on a bit of sadness which is after all, a valid part of the total human experience. 

Love’s Anticipation brings a realistic and happier yes response by the lighter melody along side piano passages, much like the easy going natural feel presented in  Distant Shores. 

Title song The Promise begins with a quiet moment of solitude in a melancholy horn tone wrapped in sadness, but this moment gently advances forward in a creative moment of divine intervention nicely provided by the artist.

Changing the piece by one moving sweep in music composition, this percussion backed melody gently makes a beautiful transformation  from an already graceful song into a lovely song of splendor, very much like a caterpillar cocoon would change into a butterfly, keeping the promise of inner peace and harmony everyone discovers in the final stages during each of life’s transitions.

Visit Leela-Music.com and sample The Promise at CDBaby.com.

Vicki Logan has a history of composing and producing outstanding New Age music from the very beginning of her music career. By incorporating elements of New Age, Classical, Pop, Jazz, Contemporary Instrumental, plus a divine gift of creativity, her earlier releases set a high standard for her future projects.

It seems Vicki Logan charts a new direction with every album. Vicki Logan’s music is related to the passage of time, and how she experienced progress while composing and producing her albums along the way. Her upbeat music is an excellent example of what can be achieved when a talented artist shares a part of themselves by putting their heart and spirit into the creation of their music. This inspiration gives music lovers a chance to also feel special along the way too.

Discovering the positive and inspiring music of Vicki Logan, and then writing about this friendly and outgoing New Age artist who is so passionate about their music has been personally rewarding. Her music is drawn from self conclusions about the ride everyone must travel during our day to day life experiences, and many of her songs were in the top 100 charts, and granted impressive online radio airplay attention worldwide. New Age Music World blog host John P. Olsen has interviewed Vicki Logan. We are pleased to present this interview for Vicki Logan’s fans and our website visitors.

Interview with Vicki Logan;

John P. Olsen: You said you have not had formal piano lessons, do not read sheet music, and play practically everything by ear, which will be surprising to many people. How are able to compose such beautiful and creative music Vicki?

Vicki Logan: I honestly wish I knew. I’ve been asked that question for years and I still don’t know what to say. I can sort of explain the process though. (And yes, I do everything by ear, so to speak. Anyone I work with can attest…I “push the buttons and just do my thing!”)

I’ll sit at the piano and start messing around with the keys. Something will hit me just right and all of a sudden, I know what I want to play and how the whole song should be. I’ll record the base piece (usually some type of chord progression) and start layering a melody and other sounds to “paint a picture”.

I never really know how it’s going to sound until the end. I’ll “dial-a-sound” on my synthesizer and then something new hits me. Even after a song is supposedly finished, I could do more to it. I don’t start with an idea and a song doesn’t have a title until it’s completed and I listen to it. Whatever it makes me think about, that’s where the title will come from. Yes, I know. I’m backwards.

When I record the actual album, I’ll play the parts in a demo and bring that demo into the studio. I’ll record what I can and then hire other musicians to play the parts that don’t sound right on the synthesizer. These musicians get free reign to add their ideas to the material since I don’t know what the real instruments are capable of doing, although I do have final say. For example; guitars can bend a note when a string is slid up or down on the neck. I can’t do that with my keyboard. The song, I find, is only enhanced by their performances…as it should be. This is where it’s true “life” comes from. That’s why I’ve reverted back to playing with other musicians rather than letting people record things digitally; making the song “perfect”. Computers are wonderful tools, but, in the end, there just isn’t enough that can be said about the performers. The feelings/emotions and oopses are priceless!

John: Many of your songs and albums have been on New Age music Chartss, plus you have helped many musicians just starting out as artists. What song and album awards and personal recognition have you received as artist?

Vicki Logan: This is going to seem really disrespectful, I know, but I really don’t intend for it to be that way. I have received a lot of honors and awards from various organizations. I’ve won some song contests. I’ve been truly honored to receive these awards, and, for the most part, they were given to me in good faith, but, the more involved I’ve gotten within the music industry, the more I’ve found how political they are. For example – The Grammys. First off, you have to be a NARAS member. If you are not, you can’t even submit your material for consideration of any award. Next, if you do get in, you have to compete against the larger corporations who belong and have several of their staff as members as all members vote on the Grammy Awards. You can guess where those votes are going to. And then, there is a lot of “vote for me -s” e-mails that percalate to members. In the end, the memberships to these groups are expensive and I don’t have that type of money to waste. Like all of you out there, I have to figure out what gives me the most bang for my buck. An attempt at stroking my ego or doing more of what I love to do?

Again, don’t get me wrong, honors and awards are wonderful things, but only if done for the right reasons. The best award I could ever receive? If I could make the world a better place for even just one person so that that person could do the same for the next, then creating and sharing what I do was worth it all.

John: We are currently playing Enchanted Winds, The Ride, and other songs of yours on 365 Stars Radio. You told me The Journey To The Places In My Soul is your most creative and best album yet. Why is that Vicki?

Vicki Logan: I would say that The Journey is the most creative as I’ve learned so much since my first CD and I’ve attempted more than I have to date. For example, I’ve played more flute on this one; more than on any other album. I’ve recorded more of the album at home and just brought in the hard drive to the studio. I used some new ideas (for me) and made some of my ideas more pronounced. There is an actual story interwoven into the music for the first time.

Anyway, I believe that each album has a special place for me since each album helped me get to the next. If I didn’t do the first the way I did, the second one wouldn’t have come to pass. Same for the third and fourth. Each one builds on the last…each represents that time in my life in which it was created. Even the photos chosen represent what was happening; many were from my backyard.

In album number one, I was chasing a dream – trying something I never thought I’d be able to do, thus CHASING DREAMS only to end up FINDING MY WAY in the music industry. This CD I even arranged a couple of cover tunes, only to find that most people preferred my originals. I was on THE RIDE of my life realizing that I could do this and ended up with THE JOURNEY TO THE PLACES IN MY SOUL when everyone wanted to find out more about me…about how I came to this place…about my weird life! (And yes, it’s been strange…lol) So that’s why I believe it is the best so far…but even better is yet to come… By constantly moving forward, attempting new things and keeping an open mind, a person can only progress…even when they think they aren’t. It doesn’t matter what someone else believes. In the end, if YOU believe in yourself, YOU do the work, anything is possible.

John: There were a couple of obstacles you had to overcome with your latest album, if you don’t mind, could you tell our readers what happened during the release of the album?

Vicki Logan: I believe someone once said to me sarcastically, if anything can happen, it will. About 3 years ago, we purchased a home only to find that it had major mold and moisture intrusion issues. The previous owner was found guilty of fraudulent seller misrepresentation and was given the order to repair the home. Instead of getting our home repaired, someone arsoned it and we lost everything…our pets, our businesses. We literally had the clothes on our backs.

Then I got lyme disease because I am an over zealous lawn mower. I mow everything. Due to genetics, I found that I had back issues. I had stenosis. My bone was growing onto my nerves and causing massive pain. It was a quick surgery and I’m hoping it’s not the beginning of more because the pain is starting to come back yet again. Then I had cataract surgery. (By the way, those of you who would like to know, I’m 43.) I haven’t been able to see right since 3rd grade! To wake up and see the alarm clock in the morning – to actually see who someone is and not a big fuzzy blob – to go swimming and not worry about getting splashed and losing a contact lens – wow! And the list goes on! And I didn’t even added the rest of my families challenges! Maybe someday I’ll write a book… lol!

John: You and I are perhaps like most Americans by constantly being surrounded by Rock, Pop, Jazz, and other genres, which are all great forms of music, so how did you discover, or what brought you into the New Age music scene?

Vicki Logan: STRESS! (Just kidding…kinda)

Really, it’s the creativity I find within myself listening to this specific genre, but I think that many of you will find that even the term “New Age” covers a lot more than just one style of music and the term has a different meaning for a lot of people. (A subject for a much later conversation.) I think that, using my music as an example, “New Age” music can be found labeled Celtic Pop, Smooth Jazz, and a gazillion other things.

I love all music and I think that comes out in what I create. I hope people realize that it’s not the music people are attracted to or not. It’s the message of the artist using the music that people relate with. Music is but a tool that allows people to communicate with others. Instrumental music is all encompassing. There are no words so there are no boundaries. Not even for the deaf or animals, believe it or not. That’s how I view it.

It’s another medium with which to paint something. So, I like the “New Age” music best because I feel that most of the artists here have a more positive view on life and I think we really need to be more positive. Personally, a label is just something we put on something else because we need to be able to identify it when we communicate with others and we all label differently according to what that label means to us.

John: There are other talented musicians who perform on particular songs and albums, who are the band members, and is creating the albums fun for you and the group, or do you consider producing an album work ?

Vicki Logan: In reality, I am all the parts when I create the songs. The musicians I work with take the parts I create and give them life. Technology has provided me with a lot of sounds which are similar to the real thing, but it’s not like having the real item in the studio. People are capable of manipulating their instruments in ways computers can’t. To give credit where credit is due, these musicians all have excellent ideas to help make a song much more interesting. I don’t know everything and I don’t expect I ever will, so human interaction is something that we all need. Period.

The folks that help me out are Randy Gildersleeve (also my main mentor) who performs miracles on guitars, mandolin, banjo and pushes me to learn more and open my mind when we are in the studio during production. Then there is Andy LaCasse who does things with bass that I would never think of. He also puts my music into sheet music form so others can play the parts with backing tracks. I can’t read a stitch of it, but I guess it’s pretty cool since there is a lot of black all over the paper! The other person who helps me get the music where I need it to be is Peter O’Gorman – percussionist extraordinaire. He will play anything to get the sounds we need. Give him a garbage can lid, a stick, whatever. He’ll make it sound awesome.

There are several other people that help out depending upon what my needs are. Matt Fink (aka – “Dr. Fink”) is an incredible keyboardist and producer and taught me a lot about midi recording, computer work and pro-tools in his home studio.

I know why I hire people to do those things!

Too much information and I just don’t have the knack for that part! Then there are loads of other instrumentalists, producers, mentors and more that I’ve worked with but would take forever if I named them all. They ARE ALL listed in my CD packages and I could never thank them all enough. That’s why I get to be where I am. With all of them. Work? Music is NEVER work. Promoting and merchandising things, figuring taxes and making sure the right things go to the right places, THAT’s work!

John: You already have 4 exceptional CD’s now available for purchase. Are you presently producing, or plan to have another album in the future besides the 4 currently on sale?

Vicki Logan: Funny you should ask that question. I literally got my new equipment today (after waiting patiently for the past 2 1/2 years!) and when I started messing around with all the buttons, I found that I have more sounds then I had previously and songs were rushing out left and right. I hope to have a new CD for release sometime in 2010. We’ll have to see what happens until then, though. Timing is everything and it has a mind of it’s own! Beisdes, remember my little quote above? If anything can happen it will? I just have to see what will happen! lol!

John: After reading your homepage biography, you seem to be philosophic about a person obtaining their goals by your own life experience. What advice can you offer persons just beginning in the music business, or suggestion to others about overcoming obstacles in general?

Vicki Logan: Everyone is different, yet everyone is the same. What I have found is that if you do what it is that you truly love, you make time for it and you are happier. If you THINK you want to do something and have a million excuses as to why you don’t get to it, I’d say that you must not be that interested in it. Think about it. If you want to go to the park, you will find a way to go to the park. If you want to take a vacation, you will find a way to take that vacation. For the most part, we will do the work necessary to get instant gratification. For some reason, we don’t do the work necessary for LONG TERM gratification.

Time goes by so fast, even our so called long term is here before we know it. My favorite quote is “Dreams are only dreams unless YOU are willing to make them a reality.” Many someones out there said that opportunities don’t just happen, we make them happen and that is more right than any one can imagine. If you want something, then do what it takes and get it! Just be realistic. Life is a precious gift. Use it. Enjoy it. Live it!

Check out the VickiLogan.com website and  read my pages dedicated to Vicki Logan. Photos are courtesy vickilogan.com.

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