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Archive for the ‘Piano Music’ Category

Jim Brickman is a popular pianist who really needs no introduction to most people, having crossed over into mainstream piano and Christmas music that is adored by millions of people. I happened to find this extra nice song video taken during his Beautiful World Christmas Special during 2009, which is available on CD or DVD.

The Beautiful World DVD is one of many Jim Brickman DVDs. I read the photography footage on the Beautiful World DVD was taken on the Peace Bridge, between the U.S. and Canadian borders at Niagara Falls. The song titled Peace (Where The Heart Is) gives a perfect example of why Jim Brickman’s piano songs are so popular.

Performing on song Peace (Where The Heart Is) are vocalists Anne Cochran and Mark Masri, with Tracy Silverman on violin. Together they give a wonderful performance on this song video, and the entire 15 song selection on the Beautiful World release.

Jim Brickman is a popular concert pianist so check the Holiday Concert schedule at his website which is billed as “A Christmas Celebration” tour.

Visit jimbrickman.com or find the Beautiful World CD/DVD at amazon.com. Photo is courtesy jimbrickman.com.

Acclaimed composing Jazz pianist Lisa Hilton has released her newest instrumental album entitled Underground. Lisa’s continuity for producing trendy and progressive music that takes the high road over the years may not have surprised those who know her best. After the release of 12 significant recordings, her earlier albums have indeed helped pave the way to place her name recognition alongside other top Jazz artists.

Lisa Hilton from Southern California was raised in a family of musicians after having taught herself to play piano and compose music at an early age, before setting her sights on formal educational studies in classical and twentieth century piano. Her early love of music in a variety of styles became the early foundation before a transition into the contemporary Jazz excursions in which Lisa is so highly regarded today.

The progressive nature of her work as a pianist have not gone unnoticed either since her songs have received airplay prominence on hundreds of radio stations including the United States, Canada and other countries internationally. This includes syndicated programs like NPR Morning Edition, Sirius XM Radio, along with numerous online radio stations which have led to strong radio chart listings at College Media Journal, Earshot Jazz and JazzWeek radio charts.

Lisa Hilton’s thirteenth album entitled Underground features her band performing 9 songs that are quite adventurous in compositional style, even by her own standards. Recording and producing an album every year since 1997, her band features world-class musicians Larry Grenadier on bass, Nasheet Waits on percussion, and J.D. Allen performing tenor saxophone.

Together this talented group does a magnificent job of openly communicating Lisa’s reintroduced vision of Jazz expressions as a team, and during their key roles in the spotlight as soloists.

The title song from the Underground album is lively and up-tempo with great counter rhythms, which offset the quietly laidback moments in Just A Little Past Midnight & B Minor Waltz. The bands interactive poise is apparent on the stylish song Blue Truth and throughout the classic swing and sway of Jack & Jill during Lisa’s extensively driven movement up and down the keyboard.

Lisa Hilton is a great talent who personifies Jazz improvisation with creativity and imagination. While Underground, Nuance, & Twilight & Blues reflect her achievements as a Jazz musician, and are refined lexes in their orientation to New Age albums, her distinguished piano performances of improvisation either as a soloist or with the band under her direction is definitely worth a listen. Lisa Hilton’s newest release is boldly expressive in Lisa’s already exploratory viewpoint as a Jazz pianist. Clearly an innovative escapade in elegance, Underground is like a smooth journey down a newly paved road.

Visit lisahiltonmusic.com to sample / purchase or visit her Amazon.com page. Read our pages dedicated to Lisa Hilton.

Photo courtesy Michael Weintrob. Cover art courtesy lisahiltonmusic.com.

Fiona Joy Hawkins has just returned home to Australia after her successful United States recording and concert tour. This visit to the U.S. has proven to be a productive recording and concert tour according to her press release where Fiona Joy Hawkins states; “The trip was absolutely exhilarating, considering I would spend weekdays recording and doing interviews and then on the weekends concert performances.”

Fiona has finalized her newest projects 600 Years in a Moment & Christmas Joy due to be released in October 2011. The word is that Fiona lends her own vocals on some songs for the first time too, so we will have to see if this is a new trend for her. The YouTube song video below is a preview of Flight of the Snowbird from her soon to be released Christmas Joy album which will arrive well before the holidays. She also has a concert DVD and has a number of live shows in Australia planned this year.

Actually the song video is a re-recording of Flight of the Albatross from her earlier album, Angel Above my Piano, already a beautiful piece and one of my favorites. This time around however she performs on an Australian 102 key Stuart & Son’s piano, which was later overdubbed with instrumentals at Will Ackerman’s Imaginary Road Studio. Needless to say Flight of the Snowbird is a masterful re-creation!

Fiona Joy Hawkins most current album Blue Dream is a piano and instrumental collaboration with other artists that had received top music honors and again extended the worldwide admiration for her work. Recognized as an awarding winning pianist who covers New Age, Classical, Contemporary, Jazz and World Fusion genres, it’s easy to see Fiona’s music is well worth the wait!

Visit fionajoyhawkins.com.au for news and concert date info in Australia. Visit Fiona’s official YouTube channel and read my reviews of Blue Dream & Ice on my pages dedicated to Fiona Joy Hawkins. Photo is courtesy fionajoyhawkins.com.au.

Another April Day by Marie-Thérèse McCartin.

Acclaimed pianist, singer and harpist Marie-Thérèse McCartin from Newtowngore, Leitrim, Ireland has released a debut album of special interest to people who appreciate beautiful vocals with piano and light orchestrations of distinction, set to a wonderful Celtic and Folk theme.

Another April Day offers listeners a collection of the most beautiful Irish songs ever written and in fine cohesion with compositions of her own. From the haunting notes of Carrickfergus to the unique rendition of Clare to Here, her release was over six months in the planning and recording of the 15 track album which features the 60 piece National Symphony Orchestra of Moldova.

Marie-Thérèse McCartin, who began playing piano at the age of six, had attended The Royal Irish Academy of Music and went on to graduate from Trinity College, Dublin, with a bachelor’s degree in Music Education. Marie-Thérèse is also an accomplished harpist, singer, and former member of Anuna, the original chorus in Riverdance. In addition to the recent release of her current album, Marie-Thérèse realized a lifelong dream in 2003 when she founded the Cavan Academy of Music. The school teaches a range of instruments and styles of music and welcomes students of all ages.

Another April Day offers listeners a fresh interpretation on some of Ireland’s best known melodies including The Rose of Tralee, Black is the Color & Galway Bay along with original compositions by Marie-Thérèse. The bonus track, Another April Day is a beautiful piece that has become somewhat of a family affair with lyrics that read like poetry composed by her father Tommy, having both the piano and vocal arrangement provided by the artist. Keeping with tradition, her debut album of Irish melodies are wonderfully heartfelt.

Visit marietheresemccartin.com to sample / purchase or at her Amazon.com page & CDBaby.com page.

Cover photo courtesy marietheresemccartin.com.

Midnight Orchestra by Spencer Stanley

Spencer Stanley is a composing musician who first developed his love for the piano during his elementary school years. Composing musical scores during junior high then became a constant activity and form of creative enjoyment for him. Spencer’s performance in various school bands, jazz bands and orchestras reflects his own compositional phrasing in his Midnight Orchestra debut album from 2010.

Midnight Orchestra has a Classic Piano, Contemporary Instrumental & New Age presentation. This album contains 11 pieces which takes listeners into the depths of melodic piano flow, with appealing resonances of strings, some woodwinds and lively percussion rhythms on snare and timpani drums. I was really impressed with his talents, along with the performing instrumentalist in accompaniment. Songs from Midnight Orchestra are currently being played on various internet radio stations, and his YouTube videos feature the song Velocity, and the title song.

Spencer Stanley has received training in piano, trumpet and French horn during his high school years. His scholastic studies earned him top scores in band ensembles, jazz and orchestras in competitions throughout the state. He is currently attending Brigham Young University for academic studies, and was selected an all-star youth musician with the Utah Symphony. Even though his background skills are centered on brass instruments, these songs are comprised of mainly piano, strings, and percussion rhythms blend remarkably well by their light melodic harmony.

Midnight Orchestra is compiled of songs Spencer composed and co-orchestrated with Dave Zimmerman during their high school years. It features Spencer on piano and Dave Zimmerman on percussion, with other musicians he became friends with over the years; Andrea Hughes (violin) Natachia Li (cello) and Sophie Stanley (classical guitar). Together these musicians have produced an impressive instrumental album, and I am sure you will reach the same conclusion.

Visit Spencer Stanley on his Facebook page.  Sample or purchase his album at Amazon.com and iTunes. Visit our page dedicated to Spencer Stanley.

Composing pianist Louis Colaiannia from Denver Colorado has a classic contemporary instrumental release you may want to know more about. His most recent New Age album expresses his love of Classical music by composing pianists like Beethoven and Mozart, but you will also hear a freestyle influence in his original compositions that give one the impression of more contemporary orchestrations. It’s like modern improvisations on classical music!

Louis Colaiannia has composed a number of classic piano and instrumental releases over the years. With earlier albums having titles of Desert Winds, Journey Of The Soul, Sailing On A Dream & Sea Of Stars, it is easy for anyone to envision that his modern orchestrations are divine and dreamy in nature. They are, much like the album titles themselves.

I found this true regarding his earlier albums, along with the wonderful piano and instrumental release Louis Colaiannia has produced in 2011, A Moment Between Eternities. With divine piano music evenly centered by a classical and contemporary atmosphere, why would anyone want to change this fine balance?

A Moment Between Eternities is a classic New Age Contemporary Instrumental release comparable to earlier albums by a wonderful range in thought and feel. The mood variations in the 9 songs are as if transitioning between one season to another, so in relation to the emotional content of his work, you will hear light graceful songs carefully blended with pieces emboldened by a more impassioned frame of mind.

Louis Colaiannia has composed each of the 9 songs total, performing on piano and synthesizer. The instrumentalist in accompaniment are; Jenna Ehrle (vocals and lyrics) Melvin Morford (bass) Jess Allen (cello) Bob Glassman (percussion) Evelyn Rutenberg (flute) Bill Kerr (guitar) and Rex Spease (saxophone and clarinet).

There is one recent variation in Louis Colaiannia’s music where a new innovative single titled City Scapes takes on a whole new direction. Moving in a new trend like his classical and contemporary orchestrations, City Scapes takes a melodic shift in what Louis terms “Orchestral Jazz”. I listened to this song and found the upbeat melodies with lively rhythms another beautiful performance of his modern classic improvisations.

Visit louismusic.com to sample / purchase and find out more. You can also visit his Amazon.com page.

Cover artwork courtesy Steve Hamilton.

Midsummer album by Uwe Gronau.

Uwe Gronau is a top musician and composer who has just released his latest New Age, Contemporary Instrumental album titled Midsummer. Presently living in Bocholt Germany, Uwe began music at a young age and later majored in music during college. Prior to his solo career, he was a band member in a popular, award winning music group that was often featured in television appearances. Uwe has also been a guest artist with groups like the award winnng band Luna Blanca.

Midsummer is an excellent 2-CD collector’s edition in a wide range of modern instrumentals in a variety of musical styles, containing an extensive 35 songs total. This release is comprised of rich instrumental songs, with the exception of one sung in English, and one in a spoken German poem format. The modern instrumental music covers smooth rhythms, and features mostly moderate in tempo instrumentals.

Uwe Gronau performs most of the instrumental music, which consists of mainly piano and keyboard-synthesizer, but Uwe also plays organ, bass, and acoustic guitar. Guest artists include co-producer and co-percussionist Clemens Paskert, along with Martin Brom and Wolfgang Demming who perform electric guitar on prominent songs.

Midsummer features a full blend of Acoustic and Electronic music with fine elements of Jazz, Pop, Progressive Rock, plus some songs are in an Ambient, Techno, Chill, and Space music format. The first CD is mainly an ensemble of instrumentals with fascinating rhythms and percussion. The second CD is more reflective with various Solo Piano, and piano with light synthesizer backing. I enjoyed every song, and since Uwe composes original music only, this quality 2-CD collector’s edition indeed has a lot to offer.

Visit his German language website at uwe-gronau.de or his English version at MySpace.com/uwegronaumusic. Sample or purchase at his Amazon.com page. Also available at CDBaby and iTunes. Cover art courtesy Jolanta Krym.

Kathryn Kaye is a talented pianist releasing her first piano and instrumental album. After learning every detail like her lifetime of music experience, the collaborating artists and production credits, I had a feeling her new release was going to be great. In fact Kathryn Kaye’s new release greatly exceeded my expectations since this album really goes the distance.

Dreaming Still is an Acoustic, Contemporary Instrumental, New Age release having many integral advantages, one being the importance of music in Kathryn Kaye’s life, which began with playing the piano at age four.  She attended college and began working toward a major in music, earning a performance degree with a double major in voice and keyboard.  In addition to her strong educational background she pursued classical training while living in Germany, appearing on television in both the U.S. and Germany as a vocalist during concerts, recitals and operas.

Kathryn Kaye is a musician and songwriter presently residing in Colorado. The beautiful Rocky Mountains region and Appalachian mountain territories in Kentucky recalled from childhood are in part a focal point for this contemporary nature inspired release. Dreaming Still contains 14 songs she composed, half of which are Solo Piano, with the balance in piano and instrumental harmony support by violin, cello, bass and English horn.

The world-class musicians providing instrumentals with piano are commendable, and are as follows: Charlie Bisharat (violin) Eugene Friesen (cello) Dan Greenspan (bass) Jill Haley (English horn) Derrik Jordan (percussion) and Noah Wilding (vocal). Dreaming Still is a Will Ackerman production, with recording, mixing, and mastering by Corin Nelsen at Imaginary Road Studios. The assistance from these two Grammy Winning talents is a fine enhancement to her proficiency as a composing pianist.

Dreaming Still is a delightful album, and I was pleased to hear a wonderful cinematic touch at times. Waiting For The Rain with piano and cello, then a Solo Piano song August Light were my two favorite songs, however this album is consistent and enjoyable throughout.  I believe Kathryn’s commitment and expertise in music has been vital to the level of quality on her first album, and her choice of music artists was first-class. In contrast to the vast expanse of the Appalachian territory, I expect the appreciation for this beautiful album will go the distance and travel far.  At the time of publication, Dreaming Still by Kathryn Kaye is #1 in the ZMR Top 100 Radio Chart for January 2011. Congratulations Kathryn Kaye!

Visit kathrynkaye-music.com to sample and then purchase at her CDBaby.com page & Amazon.com page.

Photo courtesy Delanda Licata. Cover art courtesy Robert Kooken.

When you unite the Cinematic Piano talents of award winning Marc Enfroy with the production abilities of Billboard-charting musicians 2002, the conclusive result is a work of music bound to be a success. Arriving with this creative transformation in contemporary instrumental music is the impression a new and innovative sound entity has just been born.

Marc Enfroy has released his third Cinematic Piano album Unconditional, and the newly formed alliance with Randy and Pamela Copus of 2002 certainly does deliver a rather unique chord in piano and Contemporary Instrumental fanfare.  Already admired for their singular inspiring melodies, the union of their two unique styles into one creation of beauty is exemplary.

Marc Enfroy’s music career emerged after the death of his sister Suzanne Whiting to cancer, but it was from this profound loss his progressive music legacy arose. Finding his inspiration in memory of Suzanne, Marc proceeded to compose music for the senses just like a painter would use brushstrokes to fill in the empty spaces on white canvas, and as it turns out, Marc indeed has the gift of a true artisan.

His Solo Piano debut Unbounded acquired Best Neo-Classical award in the ZMR Lifestyle Music Awards in 2008, and Best New Artist nomination. Awakening was the second colorful music portraiture, with classic orchestrations by Janet Sullins on violin, Jack Chen on flute, and vocals by Jillian Aversa. Awakening was also an award finalist which aired on many popular Internet radio stations worldwide.

Unconditional will be unveiled to the public when released on March 1 2011. The 10 song classics display Contemporary Instrumental orchestrations and fine piano detailing expertly blended with flute, strings, bell tones and chorales, with admirable performances by Jack Chen on flute and Pamela Copus on vocals.

If you are familiar with both Marc Enfroy and 2002, then you can imagine this new arrival in Cinematic Piano, Instrumental and celestial soundscapes is the ultimate music experience. While I can only speculate on the success of this, or any album, I can give you the assurance Unconditional is a passionate creation and absolute beauty that was empowered by design to take flight, in uplifting music made to celebrate life.

Visit marcenfroy.com to sample / purchase or at his Amazon.com page. Visit Randy & Pamela Copus at 2002music.com.

Cover art courtesy Marc Enfroy.

Even if the holiday celebrations of Christmas and New Years are behind us now, one contemporary composing pianist has an important message to share. Having equal relevance to the honorable offerings of peace and harmony we celebrate during the close of one year and the hopeful new beginning of another, his album arrives just in time for Valentine’s Day.

Evan Wish is a classical trained concert pianist from Encino California with a brand new release titled; Forget-me-not, blue.  Incorporating the spoken words of honorable Nobel Peace Prize recipients, and like their principled humanitarian message of peace and hope, Evan Wish gives a heartfelt message of peace and hope, told by his beautiful design in inspiring contemporary instrumental music having a classic touch.

Evan’s contemporary classic Solo Piano debut album titled Lullaby Of Love acquired the number 3 position in global charts, and remained in the Top 10 position for three months and the Top 100 for 6 months, earning a NARAS consideration for a Grammy Nomination for 2005 in the Best New Age Album of the Year category on his original composition.  Evan travels and performs concerts in Europe, and does television, film, and theatre production writing, and is an active ASCAP & ACF member, plus you can find his music on Syndicated, Public, and College Radio Stations, along with AOL, Music Choice, Live 365 and numerous others.

Forget-me-not, blue has 10 songs of Contemporary Instrumental bliss with 5 Solo Piano pieces and 5 piano with string ensemble of violin, viola and cello.  Together in unison Evan Wish delivers gently contemplative and some inspirational songs while sharing the message of peace and hope in a positive upbeat manner.  Recent recognition for Forget-me-not, blue is the # 3 chart success for December 2010, in ZMR’s Top 100 Radio Airplay Chart listings.

In a universal message of harmony in tune with a multitude of people who share the same beliefs and ideals, the song What will man’s legacy be is the heart of the humanitarian side of this project.  Here you will find past Nobel Peace Prize recipients incorporated spoken words of Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Theresa, and Martin Luther King are included, along with Native American reciting, an Israeli singer and ethnic percussions.

Forget-me-not, blue is a true achievement after many years as a Canadian born and educated pianist, beginning his first music instructions at age 7, where his gift as a pianist became apparent as a young adult which then led to formal studies at the Conservatory of Music institute in Canada where he won first class honors among many talented competitors.

In addition Evan attended the prestigious Dick Grove School of Music in Los Angeles and received tutoring from top composers in the entertainment industry.  His unique gift at an early age was discovered thankfully, and those early formative years were the strong foundation for his composing skills.  Today Evan has achieved international recognition while performing worldwide for the past 25 years.

The Solo Piano and strings ensemble songs each retain their individual merits of quality, and Evan performs on a Bosendorfer Grand Piano, widely accepted as a fine tonal instrument which transfers a pianist musical arrangement with warmth and clarity.  When touring the Provence region of France, Paris, or the French Riviera, Evan Wish is widely publicized as “The Passion of a Romantic” and you will find his Solo Piano and Instrumental release with ensemble allows one to hear his passionate work as others have discovered for themselves.  In recent news, Evan has just returned from Cannes, France while attending the Midem 2011 Music Conference, meeting with music companies and industry leaders, in addition to performing an exclusive solo concert.

While peaceful ambassadors of our past have arrived to us in the form of an ideological leader, an advocate for the poor and a nonviolent civil rights crusade of another, the beautiful Solo Piano and strings instrumental expressions from the heart of Evan Wish constitute a gallant and notable gesture too, arriving in a truly inspiring manner sure to be embraced by all.

String orchestration by Marcy Vaj (violin) Robin Ross (viola) Vahe Hayrikyan (cello).  Engineer/Co-produced by Peter Granet.

Visit evanwish.com to sample / purchase or visit his CDBaby.com page & Amazon.com page.

Photo courtesy John DeCindis. 

The Christmas season has officially arrived and what a special time of year !  While I believe most site visitors realize the true meaning of Christmas and the real reason we celebrate this special day in the highest regard, our time honored tradition of gift giving continues which naturally raises the question of what makes a suitable gift for our friends or loved ones.

Lisa Downing from Littleton Colorado is a musician with a promising answer on what makes not only a suitable gift, but a personalized one most people would enjoy receiving and a gift most likely to renew their true reason for the season Christmas spirit like her CD album did for me.  Actually, when you take into consideration every aspect of purchasing the relatively inexpensive and long lasting gift of music for nearly every gift occasion, this easy to make decision translates into a logical choice.

Lisa Downing has a Solo Piano album titled Christmas for Two that may be of interest to you and while there are many exceptional Christmas albums in the New Age genre along with every musical taste, Lisa Downing has a special gift herself as a top solo pianist in every sense of the word and this is precisely articulated on her Holiday music release.  Plus, knowing Lisa was a youth pastor at her church in Littleton earlier in life and performed in the Christian, Folk, Pop-Rock band named Wings of Faith, you know that Lisa’s heart is in the right place.

Her lifelong commitment as a professional musician are praiseworthy too since Lisa Downing earned a university degree in music, attending both the University of Colorado at Denver and Metropolitan State College, receiving a joint specialized BA degree in Traditional and Non-Traditional Music with keyboard emphasis.  Lisa is also an esteemed concert pianist having toured or performed with other renowned artists like David Lanz, Suzanne Ciani, Liz Story, and Peter Kater.

Christmas for Two on her Vision Quest Entertainment label is a Solo Piano Christmas album cordially personifying Lisa Downing’s expressive talents in several ways, plus the 12 holiday tracks are perfect in the sense they reveal traditional holiday music in her skillful expressive touch like you would hear while attending one of her highly personalized concerts.

While Christmas for Two is considered New Age / Neo Classical, I trust any label is of less regard here since every piece chosen for the album will be identifiable and appreciated by everyone like The First Noel / Joy to the World.

You will notice her Holiday release is composed with a delicate balance by the companion format where two songs are united into one like heard on All through the Night / Away in a Manger so there are actually 22 titles in all with the single song exceptions of Silent Night, Canon in D Christmas Medley, and Angels We Have Heard On High.

The traditional holiday pieces What Child Is This / We Three Kings and then O Holy Night / It Came Upon a Midnight Clear were my 2 favorites, plus I found the richness in depth and quality intonation regarding her performance on a Yamaha C7 Acoustic Piano was proficient in entirety like I had expected.

Every song on Christmas for Two is delivered with precision and Lisa’s personal creativity shines by the unique manner in which the songs were impeccably composed into one, with treble and bass notes reaching many proficient runs and chords in all ranges along the piano keyboard.

Christmas for Two varies from soft and contemplative at moments to spirited phrasing with majestic crescendos like her amazing version of God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen / Carol of the Bells which give new meaning to the term Holiday music.

Now that you know I believe simply listening to Holiday music will help renew the Christmas spirit for anyone like it did for me, and where to search for Christmas Piano Solo music that brilliantly succeeds in establishing the seasonal tone, I hope to have been of some assistance today.  I trust everyone will have an especially joyful Christmas this year while recognizing the greatest gift of all and true reason we celebrate the season.

Visit lisadowning.com to sample / purchase.  You can also visit her CDBaby.com page or Amazon.com page and read my review of A Delicate Balance on our pages dedicated to Lisa Downing.  Lisa and her husband Pete Foster own a combined talent agency and record label representing over 1200 Colorado musicians so find out more at visionquestmusic.com.

Album art courtesy NW Media.  Photo courtesy Russell Smoak – The Inner Image.

David Lanz is a GRAMMY® Nominated new age pianist getting more recognition with a little help from his friends on a new release with an almost certain destiny to become a radio chart topping release in 2010.

Pianist David Lanz has reunited with longtime friend and flutist Gary Stroutsos and cellist Walter Gray to form The Liverpool Trio, in a special instrumental tribute release of the greatest iconic band of all time.

Liverpool: Re-Imagining The Beatles by David Lanz & The Liverpool Trio is the release many people are talking and writing about at present including yours truly.

This release is more than just a name tribute to the fabulous four Beatles and is quite special by the respected musicians comprising this instrumental album with Lanz delivering his admired by many piano presentations.

David Lanz is easily remembered for his 1988 album Cristofori’s Dream release which remained at the top, number 1 position on Billboard’s Adult Alternative/New Age chart for 27 consecutive weeks and went platinum, establishing his position as a top New Age Solo Pianist.  In addition to several decades in recording work, GRAMMY® Nominated Lanz is also a concert pianist with appearances scheduled at many venues around the country.

While The Liverpool Trio is comprised of David Lanz, Gary Stroutsos, and Walter Gray, brother Gary Lanz co-produced this release featuring Keith Lowe on bass, Eric Eagle drums, David Revelli percussion, Larry Knechtel Hammond, Alonzo Davideo guitar, James Reynolds synthesizer and Richard Olivier on vocals.

Liverpool:  Re-Imagining The Beatles is based on the original song compositions of John Lennon & Paul McCartney and a new release that takes you back to the memorable Liverpool England of yesterday where John, Paul, George and Ringo were born.  While most are lesser known songs by design, songs like Norwegian Wood & Yes It Is are included in this fantastic release that becomes your ticket to ride during your modern times musical tour of The Beatles.

The YouTube video of Yes It Is featured below shows you wonderful images of The Liverpool Trio performance.  You can discover more on their YouTube video Interview Presentation with David Lanz & Gary Stroutsos.  The video gives their personal reflections and the creativity that went into on this production.

Visit DavidLanz.com for more information and to sample or purchase the Liverpool album. Photo courtesy davidlanz.com.


Steven C is an acclaimed composing pianist recognized by many for his inspirational piano and orchestral music having a graceful vibrancy that gently touches the inner spirit in a mindful way, and while music in all forms reaches out for some level of emotional response in each of us, music that inspires while moving the inner spirit is the greatest of all.

Heart Strings is the current release by Steven C. Anderson and one highly regarded in the music industry as the greatest of every release he has produced so far. After listening to Heart Strings for myself, I felt you too will find this refined beauty a classic portrayal of popular music in harmony with finely tuned orchestrations a moving and inspiring one. In fact there is a good chance many of you have already heard and felt the majestic scores of Steven C in television programing.

The true sincerity of his efforts as a musician happens to be a matter of record since the recordings and live performances of this St. Paul Minnesota resident have already been presented on The Today Show and Oprah Winfrey, along with PBS, QVC, and the Discovery Channel, so chances are everyone will have another opportunity to hear his television productions again in the near future.

With over 2 million units sold, Steven C has also performed with top artists Mannheim Steamroller and his presence on digital music programming and broad radio audience includes Music Choice, in addition to over 150 radio stations worldwide.  Steven C’s earlier Solo Piano release Signature made a number 2 debut on the ZMR New Age Charts in 2008.

Heart Strings has several fundamental components which nicely enhance the energetic structuring and vibrant resonance behind this unique project having the sustenance to brighten your spirits every single day. One being the original 15 piano melodies composed and performed by Steven C on a Bosendorfer Grand Piano was combined with the prestigious London Symphony Strings Orchestra with some additional strings provided by Brigid McCarthy and Michelle Kinney.

If the admirable inclusion of The London Symphony Strings Orchestra is not enough assurance to inspire and warm your heart, there are the dynamic elements of Grammy Award winning arranger, orchestral conductor, and Mannheim Steamroller band member Arnie Roth, with additional contributions from Andrea Bocelli, Charlotte Church, and Mannheim Steamroller founding leader Chip Davis.

In another fact of distinction, the piano and orchestrations heard in Heart Strings were recorded in London England at the renowned Abbey Road Studios, and where a countless number of beloved musical greats including Cliff Richard, Pink Floyd & The Beatles had performed their cherished classics in studio. Just like the music icons before him, the same innovative recording techniques were used to enhance and achieve the noticeable audio refinements on this uplifting instrumental classic by Steven C.

Heart Strings is an extraordinary project given the instrumental enchantment it conveys. Moving by expressing a highly sought after level of emotional content for the listener, this vibrant album has the power to transport the inner spirit onward for a multitude of people, effectively inspiring each and every individual response along the way.

To sample or purchase Heart Strings visit StevenCmusic.com or visit his CDBaby.com page. Pianist Steven C also offers the unique services of personalized custom piano music for your wedding, anniversary, or any special occasion. Find the details on his custom music page. Picture copyright BigStockPhoto.com – jgroup.

When listening to New Age music, the multiple genres and subgenres of World, Ambient, Contemporary, Instrumental, Chill Out, and Groove in most cases are heard from one album to another. Today I have a chance to tell you about a novel new release that explores the multitude of influences I have listed throughout the entire album.

The Landing ( Special Edition ) is polarizing by this fine balancing act of multiple influences and is a wonderful feat of artistry from beginning to end, plus The Landing in original form with 6 songs has achieved worldwide airplay while catching the attention of not just the buying public, but some music retailers too after landing directly onto their best sellers section.

David Clavijo from Seville Spain seems to have a natural inclination of what multi influential New Age music is all about and I felt his performance on acoustic & electric guitars along with piano & keyboards are a fine line balance that blends together quite nicely by having these diverse instrumental strengths.

The compositions of David Clavijo likewise have universal appeal after featuring in television commercials, soundtracks, festivals and numerous cultural events held in Spain. In addition, his music has acquired a global audience by extensive radio airtime having also collaborated with many international labels in the Ambient & Chill Out categories, so there are additional compilation projects that feature his original scores.

The Landing ( Special Edition ) has 10 songs and is a natural acquisition for those who like lively instrumentals with wonderful upbeat rhythms since every songs carries at least a moderate or upper tempo with liberal percussion accents. Another point of interest is almost every song exhibits piano and electric guitar harmonies with appealing vocals which nicely enhance the instrumental music environment.

Dancing on the Moon features some beautiful orchestration for the very beginning song, where piano, oboe and violin weave a bold and dynamic theme into a colorful interblending that instills a cosmopolitan touch of class. Light soprano vocals with excluded lyrics also regulate this effect on several songs like Distant Love, where electric guitar runs revolve into a memorable Rock styled rendition that is in direct contrast with a lighter piano melody.

One sensational method of exploration is the usage of upper register notes on piano which inscribes a lighter perspective while comingling the stronger melodic guitar runs and deeper tenor vocals. Es Vedra likewise paired mid register piano notes with upper range octaves backed by guitar runs and deeper tenor vocals, making an admirable blend by this interchange.

Sailing in my Dreams projects a more mysterious presence given the deeper keyboards and piano melody accents suspended in moderate timing by bass percussion. The longest song Nowhere gives a wonderful mood to relax with by the lighter arrangement. The World influences in African Spirit are moving by an ethnic choir of children vocals set to a nice percussion rhythm and turns out to be a pretty colorful song.

Las Dunas is the first of 4 new bonus songs added to the original The Landing lineup and like most songs, carries an upbeat tempo and has a modern groove feel with soprano vocals backed by saxophone and guitar. East Winds has a far reaching atmosphere by long extended electric guitar long notes, where Uttara Kanda blends exotic influences from the lands of India and with indigenous percussion, brings a spice of life presence into the picture.

Promises with an orchestra blend is the last song on The Landing ( Special Edition ) and while the Original album was indeed a success, this latest release with the 4 bonus tracks holds even greater expectations for this promising new multi influential release that really is quite special.

Visit davidclavijo.com to sample / purchase or at his CDBaby.com page and major retail outlets. Learn more about David Clavijo at his website profile page. Connect with David Clavijo on his social network sites MySpace page & FaceBook page.

Picture copyright BigStockPhoto – Copestello.

Eric Chapelle is a composing pianist from Austin Texas whose original music scores conceivably calm the waters by the gentle ambient music he produces.  Born in France, Eric is also an avid photographer who has lived in several countries around the world and his piano music retains the essential element of relaxing music by the calm buoyancy in sound that finds neutral ground with the pounding waves heard in some music today.

Across The Water is his Contemporary Instrumental 2010 release that impart 16 songs of ambient expression and creative imagination.  Eric has performed his original compositions in concerts across the U.S. for over a decade, plus movie soundtracks in television, film, and commercials have been the scores that yielded wider recognition in addition to the 2 albums to his credit.  Our Time was his 1998 album admired by many and had justifiably earned Eric a place alongside more esteemed pianists after his opening debut.

Eric Chapelle’s contributions in The Heart Aid Project has inspired me to tell you more about his dedicated efforts on a tribute CD in memorandum of the fateful World Trade Center events on 9 / 11.  Eric conceived and produced the tribute CD and compiled with 16 additional pianists who donate all royalties to the families and to me, greatly represents the caliber of people comprising the New Age genre today.

Across The Water is another fine illustration of the resourcefulness put into every composition while retaining another harmonious notation since some of the 16 songs were recorded at the Norton Island Retreat residency program in Maine.  Tide Pool is one song where the comparatively timed piano solo is casual in ambient recollection to convey an impression of calm by the fluid detailing in chord phrasing in a lighter melody that offers subtle reflections.  Below is my review quote for Across The Water and song video of Tide Pool.

Visit the hamsamusic.com website and then purchase on his music page or at CDBaby.com to sample / purchase.  Read more at our page dedicated to Eric Chapelle and at his biography page.  The Heart Aid Project CD is currently offered through the Spring Hill Music website.

Across the Water by Eric Chapelle is an inspired by nature collection of calming ambience with a wealth of restful harmony for many of the challenging moments in life, smoothing out the rough edges of today while residing in a state of readiness for the next enduring wave of life challenges that are sure to arise.


While water is one natural element necessary to sustain life, music is one non essential we can certainly live without but then again, fluid and tranquil music can be a calming neutralizer to a more harmonious life, especially when one is caught in a hurricane of stormy life challenges.

Eric Chapelle is a composing pianist from Austin Texas whose original music scores conceivably calm the waters in several ways.  Born in France, Eric is also an avid photographer who has lived in several countries around the world and his piano music retains the essential element for relaxing music by the calm buoyancy in sound that finds neutral ground with the pounding waves heard in some music today.

 Across The Water is his Contemporary Instrumental 2010 release that impart 16 songs in ambient expression and creative imagination.  Eric has performed his original compositions in concerts across the U.S. for over a decade, plus movie soundtracks in television, film, and commercials have been the scores that yielded wider recognition in addition to the 2 albums to his credit.  Our Time was his 1998 album admired by many and had justifiably earned Eric a place alongside more esteemed pianists after his opening debut.

Eric Chapelle’s contributions in The Heart Aid Project has inspired me to tell you more about the story behind his dedicated efforts in a tribute CD in memorandum of the fateful World Trade Center events on 9 / 11.  In addition to Eric who conceived and produced the project, he and review publicist Kathy Parsons had corresponded with 16 additional well respected pianists and everyone compiled the tribute CD without royalties.

Simply put, their time and virtuous work on this 9 / 11 remembrance album is to be commended, in addition their efforts have also reaffirmed my current knowledge that the 17 contributors response is very much representative of the caliber of people who comprise the New Age genre today.

Across The Water is another fine illustration of the resourcefulness put into every composition.  Julia Cory is a cellist from Texas joining Eric on songs Every Wish & Soft Landing then guitarist John Inmon & cellist Dawn Biega offer their contributing instrumentals on Across The Water ( Title Track )  Their level of performance and musical drama they offer expressively impart gentle movement into the picture and is well suited to the principal ideals this album represents.

This album retains yet one more harmonious notation since some of the 16 songs on Across The Water were recorded at the 150 acre Norton Island Retreat residency program created by the Easter Frontier Educational Foundation in Maine.  Eric has characterized the island as an inspiring destination of solitude where writers and musicians like him can compose in peaceful moments of relaxing clarity.

Norton Island is one song where the natural environment of the retreat is evenly transferred then shown like a scenic picture of captured images.  The comparatively timed piano solos, casual in ambient recollections like heard in Tide Pool wonderfully convey an impression of calm by the fluid detailing in chord phrasing and lighter melodies that offer subtle reflections using even handed moderation, much attune to Wild Iris in the mellow point of view it brings.

Remembrance is another beautiful song that carries a wonderful Cinematic overtone with every measure, and although the song on the surface is light the well placed notes engrave a deep feel of melancholy, in nicely placed emotional content I found quite moving.  Contrasting soprano chorals evenly trace the piano melody while outlining lower octaves then model into more dramatic posturing and boldly crescendo as if gentle waves were moving across the shoreline.

While Across The Water from Eric Chapelle is not essential to daily living, his inspired by nature album is a solid collection of calming ambience that provides a wealth of relaxing harmony for the listener, smoothing out the rough edges of today while remaining anchored in a state of readiness for the next enduring wave of life challenges that are sure to arise.

Visit the hamsamusic.com website and then purchase on his music page or at CDBaby.com to sample / purchase.  Read more about Eric at his biography page.  The Heart Aid Project CD is currently offered through the Spring Hill Music website.

Photo copyright Hamsa Music courtesy of Eric Chapelle.

Solo instrumental albums are a natural source of personalized music, so when two reputable soloists merge their singular talents, an alliance from soloists to duettists is an even more valuable source of personified music for everyone.

Devin Rice & Erin Aas are seasoned musicians already recognized by their proficient styles as individual artists. Now they emerge as a team that write and perform original piano with guitar, and finger styled guitar duet compositions with hand selected artists adding polished accompaniments on their new release titled Arrival.

Residing in the state of Washington, Devin and Erin traveled to the Imaginary Road Studios in rural Vermont to enlist the expertise of GRAMMY® Award-winning artist Will Ackerman. The level of quality with the album’s production retraces their visit to a highly specialized destination.

Arrival is an album where Devin plays piano and guitar along with Erin, showcasing their 15 song compilation that is adventuresome and symmetrical from the first song to the last. After meeting for the first time several years ago, I felt their earlier mainstay as professional soloists has been doubled and enhanced using simple math, along with their broad variance in individual styles.

Devin Rice and Erin Aas, have selected skilled team of artists, along with GRAMMY® Award-winning producer Will Ackerman, to emerge as a fortified musical team. By virtue of each artist’s specialized skills, they have attained an award-winning strategy with Arrivial.

Thyn Ayre is the crisp beginning song that sounds like a down to earth journey put to sheet music, like Procession, where a wonderful just right feel becomes the standard atmosphere. These folk styled narratives flourish during the piano and guitar duets set in a moderate tempo like most of the 15 songs.

Borderline is a breezy guitar duet by Erin and Devin, while their Tribute to Robert Frost expresses a more stately approach that includes percussion rhythms backing majestic piano melodies with subtler acoustic guitar highlights.

Lively acoustic guitar and percussion rhythms are heard on the memorable song Nevada, while Something About A Harbor has piano lead in for guitar, with rich melodic tones showing depth in a natural way. 

Perdido En Granada, Lullaby For Now & For JB are gentle and more introspective songs with English horn and cello support that compliment the pleasing atmosphere.

Whiskey In The Watertower is a spirited melody, and nicely coordinated guitar duet that features a wonderful guitar solo performed by Will Ackerman.

This song resembles Pulborough Spring by taking an up-tempo direction from the primarily moderate paced piano and guitar duets with instrumentals.

Rich cello harmonies are the scenic backdrop in songs, Morning With Annie, Southern Breeze, & Stars of Winter, with the latter song taking an adventurous free flight expression during the melody and refrains that gently lands with guitar, cello, and piano uniting in an ensemble.

Although solo albums are a mainstay and pleasing source of enjoyment, Arrival is a nice departure from singular solo albums given the enriching instrumentals and contrasting styles of the two principal soloists.  This departure notably doubles the fine harmonic value for the listener, along with Devin and Erin who have likewise doubled their musical achievements together as a team, and as individuals.

Additional artists are Derrick Jordan on djembe with Eugene Friesen and Traci Hoveskeland giving cello performances on several tracks. Jill Haley lends her talents on English horn and Will Ackerman plays guitar on the final song.

Visit devinriceanderinaas.com to sample or purchase, and at their CDBaby.com page. Read their biography page with how it all began. Visit the Imaginary Road Studios of williamackerman.com. Big Stock Photo copyright – MelMcNaughton.

Fiona Joy Hawkins has just released a YouTube video with excerpts of her recent concert performance at the Q Theatre in Sydney Australia.  In this concert, Fiona is featured showcasing her talents as a pianist, and sings soft vocals.  The entire supporting cast of music professionals on the video are Rebecca Daniels playing violin and vocals, Trish McMeakin on cello and Andy Busuttil on percussion, clarinet, and reed instrument, saxillo.

I have watched this new video several times now, and found it gives an excellent sampling of her classic material with several songs from her recent Blue Dream album. 

Fiona is also one of many currently under consideration with Zone Music Reporter’s awards ceremony taking place later in February and March.

Speaking of the ZMR awards, we have a special post ready for this weekend displaying 20 qualifying artists and their albums currently under consideration that we have written album reviews on this past year at NewAgeMusicWorld.com.

We invite you to check back for a nice story about the ZMR awards ceremony this weekend.  You can go to zonemusicreporter.com for the complete details.

Visit fionajoyhawkins.com.au to find out more about this music professional.

Cover art is courtesy Fiona Joy Hawkins.

The Piano as the leading musical instrument can be appreciated using just a few simple well placed notes. It’s the pianist who takes the leading role by their note by note delivery to determine the style and complexity of the note structure in hopes of creating a classic piece of music everyone can appreciate.

Ann Sweeten is one musician widely recognized for her classic style. She also sets a high standard in quality among many pianists in the wide range of genres employing piano music as the chosen manner for pleasing an audience. In a skilled full range delivery on a Steinway Baby Grand, her classic signature sound deserves respect in a natural way, lending itself to beautiful music that many have found, gives new meaning to the term music appreciation.

Just This Side Of Spring showcases her latest composing lead performance as a Steinway Artist and music professional, with several talented artists at her side. Windham Hill Records founder Will Ackerman performs on acoustic guitar on the title song, along with co-producing the album with Ann, who also conducts vocals and synthesizers. Andrew Eng on viola & violin, along with bass performer Michael Miksis, and Trisha Craig on Flute are the accompanying musicians of several songs contained on this album, who do excel in terms of fluidity as a collective unit.

Being the author of numerous solo piano reviews in the New Age genre, I promptly identified an admirable level of richness and depth in tone I rarely hear in many comparative piano solo albums. Stylish tonal qualities held in even the quietest patterns give complex sequences and a prolific feel of realism within every individual phrase. I likewise concluded the classic instrumentals supporting Ann Sweeten on Just This Side Of Spring clearly strengthen this opulent quality, validating my initial first impression.

Ann Sweeten is a Steinway Artist & Composer, and her achievements are numerous, including voting privileges in the National Recording Academy of Arts & Sciences, ASCAP Popular Award Recipient starting in 2002 thru the years 2009.

The ZMR nominations and awards are just as numerous and her talents are not limited to music achievements and concert performances on piano. Ann is also a professional actress, singer, and ballet dancer, realizing many achievements in her diverse life.

Just This Side Of Spring is a thoughtful Piano Instrumental album that holds many elegant touches leaning towards the classical side of life, while shown in a natural realistic way too, becoming a great follow up for her previous Piano Instrumental album Grey Sky and Bittersweet.

I concluded that both Just This Side Of Spring & Grey Sky and Bittersweet make you feel a pleasant sense of comfort and enjoyment in a much desired way, given by a qualified pianist who delivers an admirable performance on a Steinway Baby Grand, in another new release of her music almost everyone can appreciate.

Visit AnnSweeten.com to sample or purchase. Find at popular music outlets like Ann Sweeten’s CD Baby.com page.

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