On October 28, world-renowned Australian “fingerstyle” guitar legend Tommy Emmanuel CGP will release a new album of holiday music, Christmas Memories, showcasing new arrangements of Christmas favorites such as “Jingle Bells,” “Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!,” and “White Christmas.” In addition, the album includes three original tunes that are sure to become instant Christmas classics, including “Christmas Time,” “Let’s Make a Christmas Memory” and “Christmas Memories.”
In support of the new album, Emmanuel will embark on a U.S. Christmas tour in the fall of 2016. “The Classic & Christmas Tour” will feature one solo set of some of Emmanuel’s classic acoustic material, and one set of Christmas favorites where he’ll be accompanied by long-time friend and collaborator John Knowles CGP on guitar, Pat Bergeson on guitar and harmonica, and Annie Sellick on vocals.
“Making this new album was such a joy for us,” said Emmanuel. “We had just finished our last Christmas Tour, and we were ready to go in and play the songs LIVE in the studio. Every performance is how it went down…no studio tricks or fix-ups, just honest singing and playing. This brings a feeling to the music that can’t be manufactured. It sizzles…
The UAB Gospel Choir is a cherished ensemble by the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Music under the direction of Kevin Turner. The choir performs traditional and contemporary American Gospel Music tours throughout the United States and abroad. Joining the choir is Alicia Olatuja, who has been praised by The New York Times as “a singer with a strong and luscious tone and an amiably regal presence on stage.” Olatuja first came into the spotlight in 2013 while performing as the featured soloist with the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir at President Barack Obama’s second inauguration. She continues to astound audiences with her exquisite vocals, artistic versatility and captivating demeanor.[read more…]
A self-made singer/songwriter, Matt Wertz spent years creating soulful, feel-good pop music on his own terms. Nashville — a city that doubled as his muse and adopted hometown — always played a big role in that creation process. It was the place where Wertz wrote his songs, the place he recorded his albums, the place he’d return after touring the country with songwriters like Jason Mraz, Maroon 5, Parachute and Gavin DeGraw.
Something changed after 2014’s Heatwave, a record that shone a neon light on Wertz’s appreciation for ’80s pop music. Wertz realized he’d grown perhaps a bit too comfortable in Nashville, where he’d been making music for more than a decade. Looking to write an album that tackled contemporary pop music from a different angle — literally — he headed to Los Angeles, where he spent several months writing songs for his ninth album, Gun Shy. Fueled by infectious, 90’s-inspired beats, lush textures, and soaring air-tight pop melodies, Gun Shy fires twin barrels of modern pop and synthesized R&B, finding new life in old-school influences.
“I realized I’d been making records in a similar way in the same geographic area,” Wertz admits, “and I wanted to get away from that…[read more…]
COMIC BOOKS. BOREDOM. ROCK N ROLL. VIDEO GAMES. MISFITS. RAMONES. WEEZER. THE MIDDLE OF AMERICA. THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE. NIRVANA. PIZZA. DAD’S RECORD COLLECTION. SKATEBOARDS. AFROPUNK. MORE PIZZA. A QUEST TO END FALSE ROCK.
That, in a nutshell, is Radkey. Def: Rad-Key. As in: “The Key to Rad-Ness”.
That’s what you get when the needle hits plastic with Radkey. It’s the sound of rock sharpened to its primal essence. Blasted over 15 tracks, courtesy of the Brothers Radke (the band name is a spin on their shared last name): 23 year-old guitarist and Danzig dead-ringer vocalist, Dee Radke, 21 year-old bassist Isaiah and 19 year-old drummer, Solomon, Radkey’s Another Century debut, Delicious Rock Noise is the rare kind of power-riffing rock n’ roll phenomenon that literally explodes out of the speakers the minute opening track, “Dark Black Makeup” comes skulking in like a gang of disaffected teens on a goth-punk rampage.
Like any great rock band, the gas in Radkey’s tank has been a will to rock on their terms. As pre-teens growing up in the Nowheresville of Saint Joseph, Missouri, they enrolled in rock n roll high school as their ticket out. With music-obsessed dad-and-former Wal-Mart employee, Matt Radke as road…[read more…]
Steve Vai is a virtuoso guitarist, visionary composer, and consummate producer who sculpts musical sound with infinite creativity and technical mastery.
At age12,he started taking guitar lessons from Joe Satriani. At 18, he began his professional musical career transcribing for, and then playing with, the legendary Frank Zappa. More than three decades, 15 million album sales and three GRAMMY Awards later, Vai continues to use unbridled guitar virtuosity and soulful artistry to explore the spectrum of human emotion. He has proven himself, in his own right, to be one of music’s true originals.
“I make music to push my own buttons,” explains Vai. “I’ve always been
“I make music to push my own buttons,” explains Vai. “I’ve always been driven by an addiction to create sounds that are unique — not better than what other people do, just different.”
That obsession remains the guiding force behind Vai’s ongoing musical evolution and what he loves most about being a musician.
“For me, the real gravy is when I hear a strange or beautiful sound in…[read more…]