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Guitarist Wanted - Springhill, FL ... Submitted: 09-25-2016 ... 10:24 EST
Very professional 3 piece band drums/bass/guitar looking for a very pro oriented 4th member to round out the type of music we are focusing on which is dual guitar Rock/Blues/Southern rock/Funk Blues. We do songs by Gov't Mule, Skynyrd, Foghat, Allmans, Meters, ZZ-Top, Jeff Beck, Jo Jo Gunn, Ram Jam, many more. Many songs are those that rarely get played as often as in the past, so please don't expect songs like Ramblin Man or Gimme 3 Steps to be on the list. Our goal is to play in all the popular venues and make a few $$. The 2nd guitarist must be adept at learning dual harmonies that are in m any of the tunes we cover. We hav e our own studio for practicing and at the moment meet twice a week. We're very anxious and would prefer a like minded individual to feel the same about our project. Thanks! ... 5851631 ... Contact: Joe
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Bassist Available - Pinellas Park, TampaBay Area FL ... Submitted: 05-11-2016 ... 09:43 EST
Mature Bass Guitarist with Back Vocals Playing since 1965 Pro since 1969 From Monterey, California - Now permanently local Florida but can travel. Own Pro Equipment and Equip-Van. All genres of music played but not into; Heavy Metal, Head Bang, Hip Hop, Rap, Reggae, or Noise... Also limited ability on Guitar and Keyboards... I'm not interested in Tracks, Loops, and Machines, I am a live musician for other live musicians. Not looking for $50 Bar bands either... (NO DRUGS)... Sorry my list is all negatives but that list is much shorter and I don't want to waist anyones time. I do my homework so others are not standing around waiting for me to learn. I'm interested in Pro Groups or Pro Start-ups. So if you are an individual MorF or Band that sees eye-to-eye with the above information, PLEASE "E" or Call... I'm Ready, Steady, and Huggable :-) ... 9537177 ... Contact: zses456@yahoo.com (831) 238-8540
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Vocalist Wanted - Clearwater, TampaBay Area FL ... Submitted: 04-19-2016 ... 14:50 EST
We are a high energy cover band looking for a vocalist who can sing Skid Row,Maiden,Priest,Sabbath,Dio,Alice in Chains,Ozzy etc.We are a no nonsense band with full PA ,lights and soundman.Your personal life is yours but our rehearsals and performances are drug and alcohol free. If interested contact Brad @ 727-768-2690 ... 252130 ... Contact: Bama ( James) 727-657-6593
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Drummer Wanted - ST PETE, TampaBay Area FL ... Submitted: 04-09-2016 ... 10:16 EST
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Other Musicians Wanted - Dunedin, TampaBay Area FL ... Submitted: 03-17-2016 ... 09:05 EST
I have an acoustic jazz, R&B, funk, blues duo (guitarist/ vocalist) and also do some Gypsy jazz and Spanish fusion. We are looking to add a percussionist, namely a Cajon player who can play some funky beats, some Latin and swing beats. I work with a very talented guitarist who plays anything. I play a bit of Cajon, Doumbek, and Djembe but I just can't sing and drum simultaneously,so I've just been jazz-egging it and adding some tambourine, I also play Zills (brass castanets/finger cymbals. We are still relatively new, under a year, but have had some mild success and have a few venues we've played and have on the schedule, Beachfyre Grill, LPs Pub, and Wine&Brew Dunedin. We'd also like to start booking private parties/events. We feel adding a percussionist will give the music the edge & excitement needed. We'd like to do more 'danceable' stuff. I'm the singer/clarinetist. If you're interested in collaborating, give me a text or call. We are located in Dunedin. Thanks! Kim 727-485-5444 ... 216971 ... Contact: Kim. 727-485-5444
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Riviera Bay Yard Sale
Sep 27
2016
You have a few days left to prepare to shop or sell at the BEST & MOST POPULAR neighborhood yard sale in all of St Pete. Multiple sales will be located throughout the 1,250 homes from 78th Ave N to 98th Ave N, just east of 4th St N, where large signs will direct you into the neighborhood. We advertise Fri, Sat & Sun starting at 8am, but sellers set their own days and hours when they'll be open. Some can only do Fri, some only do Sat, some only open Sun. We usually have sales address maps available at each sales location. "Happy Hunting and/or Selling"
SAFETY NOTICE: The streets will be packed with vehicles and people looking all around, so please drive slow and be cautious.
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St Pete Pier Meetings
Sep 07
2016
St. Petersburg residents hoping for an update on what’s happening with the pier project will have three chances to learn more during the month of September. The city has announced three open house-style meetings.

“All programs are the same and you are welcome to attend any of the three sessions,” the city wrote in a media release. “Information about the Pier process will be shared – what has happened to date and what’s coming up.”

The city is also hoping to get input from residents during the informal, round-table discussions. The open houses are set to take place:

Tuesday, Sept. 13 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Roberts Recreation Center, 1246 50th Ave. N.
Wednesday, Sept. 14 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at J.W. Cate Recreation Center, 5801 22nd Ave. N.
Tuesday, Sept. 20 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Lake Vista Recreation Center, 1401 62nd Ave. S.
The project remains in its design phase with construction hoped to begin in early 2017 with completion on the $66 million project targeted for the third quarter of 2018.

For more information about the pier project, stpete.org
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MARCONI UNION HAS FOUND THE SECRET RADIO WAVELENGTH FOR GHOST STATIONS
Aug 24
2016
MARCONI UNION
GHOST STATIONS


Ghost Stations, the ninth studio album by UK-based Marconi Union, combines many aspects of their classic electronic sound with some new musical elements that take the music in exciting and unexpected directions and is released on the UK ambient label, Just Music.

After fourteen years of writing and performing, the trio – founder members Richard Talbot and Jamie Crossley with keyboard player Duncan Meadows – are thought to be “amongst today's most talented musicians” according to London's Sunday Times. They have continually steadily developed and refined a unique musical identity, evoking emotions by gracefully blending elements of dub, jazz, ambience and electronica within their richly melodic compositions.

With Ghost Stations, Marconi Union’s music continues to straddle the worlds of artistic credibility and musical accessibility. They were not afraid to accept the challenge of making new music rather than just repeating their earlier work and were well aware of the risk of trying new things.

“People who have bought our previous records may think we've gone too far in this direction or that direction or that we don't do enough of some particular aspect anymore, but we've already done those things in our previous work and we have to keep pushing our boundaries otherwise what is the point? We want people to hear Ghost Stations and say “'What the fk is that' either in a good or bad way!”

Before making a record, Marconi Union usually have a clear idea about its ultimate direction. But this time, they decided to set aside any preconceptions, they spent the last two years experimenting with playing, programming, editing, re-editing, (agreeing and disagreeing) until Ghost Stations naturally evolved. Once the title was decided upon, everything fell into place connecting ideas of abandonment, empty spaces and dereliction.

“We always want to move forward and try new things, there's no point in just treading water, so it was great to use a couple of guest musicians [Digitonal's Andy Dobson on clarinet and Giorgio Li Calzi on trumpet]. Sometimes you need real playing, especially when it comes to feel.”

Over the last fourteen years, their studio albums, Under Wires and Searchlights (2003) [“sonically immaculate” -- Uncut], Distance (2005) [“one of the most successful ambient albums of recent years” -- The Sunday Times], A Lost Connection (2010) [“minimal, introspective, ethereal electronica – gorgeous” -- The Guardian], Beautifully Falling Apart (2011) [“places MU firmly in the vanguard of acts making atmospheric, ambient music” --Music OMH], Different Colours (2012) [“a work of bewitching beauty” -- DMC], and their last album, Weightless (2014) [“an ethereal sense of free flowing dimensions” -- DJ Mag], have brought them to the attention of ever-larger audiences and international critical acclaim.

Marconi Union have accepted Festival invitations from Brian Eno. They also have collaborated with the Marina Abramovic Institute and recorded “Weightless,” now hailed as the “most relaxing song ever,” with its tens-of-millions of streams and You Tube views, (even earning the accolade of being named as one of the “Best Inventions Of The Year” by Time Magazine). Their music has been selected to accompany art installations, independent arts-based projects, and theatre and ballet, and to serve as the beautiful musical backdrop to television commercials, drama and documentary films worldwide.

Tracklist:
01 Sleeper
02 Remnants / Shadow Scheme
03 Abandoned / In Silence
04 Riser


______________________________________________________________________

Marconi Union’s music -- CDs, vinyl albums and digital downloads -- are available both in record stores and at many of the main worldwide Internet sales websites. More information about the group and their music is available at their website (the group’s name dot com) or at their record company’s website (Just Music dot co dot uk).


Note: Marconi Union is considered one of the most creative and top electronic and ambient groups in the world based on sales, acclaim and online viewing/listening.
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VOCALIST KIMBERLY HAYNES ALSO WRITES HEALING, SELF-EMPOWERMENT LYRICS
Aug 17
2016
KIMBERLY HAYNES
AWAKEN ME

Kindled by an awareness of divine guidance and conscious connection with spirit, new age singer/songwriter and Music Medicine Woman Kimberly Haynes delivers her debut album, Awaken Me, which brings forth an uplifting invitation to discover a sacred space deep within the heart. The spectrum of her eclectic and enlightening vocal performances evokes both the tenderness of a mother’s touch and the ancient feminine power of a tribal priestess singing her truth for the betterment of the community. The album, subtitled “Songs From the Heart of a Seeker,” is a musical journey of discovery, healing, personal growth and devotion.

“My songs are my prayers,” explains Haynes. “It is truly a privilege to carry those prayers into the world. It is my hope that they will be a blessing to all who hear them. So I raise my voice in song to awaken a place deep within myself and in others where we can collectively begin to remember our own sacred hearts, our sacred connection to Creation, and the sacredness in each other.”

This is harmonious music that blends new age, world-fusion, gentle folk and soft pop into a well-crafted production of 11 devotional songs cultivated by accomplished producer and multi-instrumentalist David Vito Gregoli (a recording artist in his own right). Gregoli co-produced and co-arranged with Haynes. On the recording Gregoli performs on a vast array of instruments such as guitars (steel and nylon-string acoustic, electric, 6 and 12-string, and the South American charango), bass, mandolin, sitar, banjo, piano, electric piano, synth, udu, drums, percussion, bells, Native American flute and other flutes, gopichand and kalimba. Haynes additionally adds backing vocals, hand drums and percussion.

The album also unifies brilliant special guest performances by some distinguished and well-respected musicians such as pianist Peter Kater, vocalists Tina Malia and Ken Stacey, drummer/percussionist Christo Pellani, violinist Jesus Florido, tabla player Cooper Madison Lanier, dulcimer performer Joellen Lapidus, players of Native American flutes Gareth Laffely and Al Jewer, accordionist Andy Mitran, didjeridu player Stephen Kent, hang-drummer Aeb Byrne, frame-drum/percussionist Byron Metcalf, vocalist Aeone and others. The result is a rich tapestry of sound combining ethnic instruments from around the world with traditional Western ones to conceive a true world-fusion flavor.

The focus of the album is the pure, sensitive, spiritual voice of Kimberly Haynes. Her major influences include Shawn Colvin, Joni Mitchell, Alison Krauss and Sarah McLachlan. Haynes’ voice showcases her original music and inspirational, poetic lyrics. Each song shares a unique story born from a life of tremendous trials and blessed tribulations, all flowing from a heart expressing love of music and life. “I write and sing from the depths of my own life experience. It’s a powerful thing to do this from a place of personal truth,” states Haynes.

More information on Kimberly Haynes and her music is available at her website (MusicMedicineWoman dot com). Her album is available as a CD or as digital download tracks at a variety of online sales sites such as CDbaby, Amazon, iTunes, eMusic and many others.

“The title of the album, Awaken Me, comes from the song of the same name and seemed appropriate because it is such an important starting point,” says Haynes. “Each of us has the daily opportunity to awaken to our personal destiny -- to who we truly are and what we each have to give, and to the sacredness of both our individual and our collective journey. This song was born out of my yearning for clarity for the betterment of my own life and all those I touch. It is a universal need. The song ‘My Heart Knows The Way’ is about finding my own way, my own truth and personal freedom, and to live by that truth. It’s about recognizing that we are all free to do that because deep inside each of our hearts is the knowledge and the courage we need to meet every moment of our lives authentically.”

In the “Great Divide,” Haynes sings about the distance she felt when performing for an audience, and how that changed when she began doing personalized sound healing and recognized that connecting with other hearts is the goal. “To touch the heart is the miracle and where all separation dissolves.” Similarly Haynes wrote the song “Light Of My Soul” when she had a powerful spiritual insight. “The truth is in everyone’s heart. Everything we need is inside of us, and we all have access to it through daily practice, connecting with our Spirit, with the Creator and with all life-forms around us. It is an on-going process of awakening, healing, strengthening and fine-tuning our direction.”

Other songs with similar themes include “The Pathless Path” (which contains the line “in my heart is the holy spark”), “The Dream” (“You are not alone; Grace will guide you; Faith protects you; Love is in you”), and “The Jewel” (“don’t let the moment slip by, the jewel is waiting inside”).

Her path to music started early. A young Kimberly (adopted when she was three days old) was featured in gospel church choirs from the moment she was old enough to participate, and began studying voice, guitar and songwriting in her early teens which lead to placement in a gifted music program in high school. By the age of 17 she began studio singing and had been featured in television appearances and radio interviews within her Christian community. Her formative years paved the path for a powerful journey deep into self-discovery, greatly influenced by tragedies and loss, addictions and recoveries, joys, wonders, and victories. “Having risen from my own ashes multiple times, it is my mission to carry music of the heart into the world. My life and my music are richer and deeper for the challenges I have overcome, and my songs are a reflection of my personal journey from brokenness to wholeness,” she conveys.

Motivated by fond childhood memories of being mesmerized by the talents of musical greats such as Doris Day, Billy Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald, she shifted into the world of jazz and big band music. Kimberly developed an extensive performance background in her early twenties as she took part in a multitude of recording projects as well as performing in Japan, Denmark and a variety of Los Angeles nightclubs. She attended the Musicians Institute in Hollywood to study jazz vocals, vocal improvisation and songwriting. Eventually Haynes became a sought-after vocal coach herself. She often composes on guitar.

In 1999, Haynes was guided to connect with Spirit in a deeper way. She married and started a family. In revisiting the gift of being part of a spiritual community, she wanted to give her own children a container in which to discern Spirit. In 2004, she began an apprenticeship as a cantorial soloist and started leading the prayer services alongside the rabbi for a local synagogue, which she now continues to do once or twice a month. Kimberly shares, “It was here that I first learned what it means to be the one who raises their voice on behalf of the community, inviting the Divine into their midst.”

Haynes then began 15 years of intense study of sacred music from around the world. She simultaneously completed five years of sound healing apprenticeship, while discovering the world of Peruvian shamanic practices and ceremony in the process. Through this discipline, she spent five years in her own deep healing process and learned to use her voice along with sacred instruments with the intention to facilitate healing for others. This powerful work led to the beginning of a multi-faceted private practice, combining voice lessons with shamanic practices and private healing sessions. The past ten years she has helped her husband with an illness and they explored alternative healing through plant-based medicines and supplements, diet, sound healing and shamanic energy healing.

Whether Kimberly is leading prayer services for her community, facilitating voice workshops and sacred ceremonies, performing at musical venues, or simply gathering her family and friends for a sacred meal, it’s all done with a fierce passion and commitment to connecting with Spirit and with the hearts of those present.
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Gyuto Monks Of Tibet Join Voices With Heather Lee Who Sings In Several Languages
Jul 20
2016
GYUTO MONKS OF TIBET
FEATURING KIM CUNIO & HEATHER LEE
Beyond Karma

The musical album Beyond Karma is a rare mix of sacred sounds from different cultures. The Gyuto Monks of Tibet (the group that ushered in the West’s appreciation and fascination with traditional chant through a series of best-selling albums starting in the late-1960s) are joined by Australia’s finest sacred music duo, Kim Cunio and Heather Lee, on this recording of traditional and newly-composed music from Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

The album on New Earth Records (NewEarthRecords dot com) was arranged and produced by Dr. Kim Cunio, a renowned musician, musicologist and composer of sacred music, and Australia's leading interpreter of traditional sacred musical traditions. Heather Lee is a multi-lingual soprano singer. Theirs is a professional and a personal partnership, and their marriage is a celebration of religious diversity including Jewish, Christian and Hindu traditions. With their adopted Indian son Babu (who sings on one piece from this album), they are a model of interfaith marriage. Cunio and Lee are prolific in their explorations of sacred music. For example, they worked together on an historic, audacious and scholarly musical project in 2000 based on the Dead Sea Scrolls when they transcribed the 2000-year-old music of the Baghdadi Jews and merged it with the text of the Scrolls. In addition to the team’s expertise in singing, Cunio plays many traditional instruments, and has had a number of ancient instruments specially reconstructed for specific projects.

The Gyuto Monks of Tibet are pure tantric masters whose strict daily practice stands at the very pinnacle of Tibetan Buddhist tradition, but they are no strangers when it comes to recording. Their sound has been recorded by musicologists (Huston Smith in 1967; David Lewiston in 1974 and 1977; among others), pop stars (Mickey Hart of the Grateful Dead in 1989) and kirtan masters to name but a few. Considered one of the world’s music treasures, the Gyuto Monks are especially known for their sonorous, grandiloquent sound, immensely low range and the sheer power of their harmonic chant. Chanting between a low A and C, almost an octave below the regular male range, the clusters of their notes and harmonics are one of the greatest living vocal techniques. The monks’ lives are lived in prayer. Their sound is not just music, but tantric practice, and this does not change whether they are in a temple, on a stage or in a recording studio. The Gyuto Tantric University is one of the great monastic institutions, founded in 1475 by Jetsun Kunga Dhondup who is believed to have started the monks tradition of overtone singing, also described as chordal chanting. Some Westerners heard their recordings from the Sixties and Seventies, but the Gyuto Monks rose to widespread prominence and worldwide acclaim with their 1986 album Tibetan Tantric Choir, a series of concerts with the Grateful Dead in the USA in 1995, their 1997 appearance in the film and on the soundtrack of Seven Years in Tibet, and their previous recording on New Earth Records, Pure Sounds, which was nominated for a 2011 Grammy award in the Traditional World Music category.

Cunio is a regular lecturer at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music in Brisbane. He has composed and produced numerous music projects for CD, radio and television. An accomplished researching composer, he was awarded an ABC Golden Manuscript Award in 2004 in recognition of his work with traditional and Islamic music. Commissions have included music for the Art in Islam exhibition and Indian sacred music for the Garden & Cosmos exhibition, both at the Art Gallery of New South Wales; Songs to RA, music for the Egyptian Antiquities exhibition from the Louvre; The Temple Project, setting ancient Psalms and Biblical texts to Baghdadian Jewish chant on replica instruments; and Buddha Realms, a compilation showing the diversity of Buddhist music. CDs have included Music of the Dead Sea Scrolls, The Sacred Fire: The Music of Hildegard of Bingen, The Temple Project: The Thread of Life (a reuniting of Arabic and Jewish musicians), and Sweet Dreams (lullabies from around the world). Lee is an award-winning singer and soloist who has focused on both sacred traditional music and western classical music in her career. She has performed in many of the leading venues and companies of Australia including the Victorian State Opera, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, the Sydney Opera House, and the Cameron Macintosh CATS tour of Australia and New Zealand.

While the focal point of the Beyond Karma album is the wide-range of vocals, both sung and chanted, the recording also features a combination of Eastern and Western instruments, including piano, harmonium, tanpura, santour, violin, viola, cello, joza, wooden flute, oud, didjeridoo and percussion.

“What I love is finding ways to make the endangered music of the world live again without affecting its lineage or integrity,” states Cunio. “And in between that I will write music in many settings with anything from fully scored Western instruments, to traditional instruments that are rarely notated, or with samples and synthesis. Beyond Karma has a bit of all of that.”

Cunio says, “In April 2014, Heather and I spent an incredible week with the Gyuto Monks, chanting, singing, playing together and giving a concert. In this album we have recreated the feeling of that concert, combining Tibetan chant with other traditions, as well as writing accompaniments and responses to the music of our dear friends.”

“Beyond Karma is a meeting of two ensembles who take sacred music to places it does not normally go,” explains Heather Lee. “Singing high with the Gyuto Monks is an experience like no other for me. I am anchored in a well of sound and our combined range of more than five octaves is an aural feast.”

The combining of Lee’s voice with the monks begins on the title tune which combines two traditions of sacred chant sung at the same time -- the Morning Meditation practice of the Gyuto Monks with the exquisite Ashkenazi Jewish prayer “Y’hu L’Ratzon.” Australian aboriginal music meets Tibetan culture on the second piece, the solo “Karma Burning” chant backed with a didgeridoo played by Ash Dargan. The setting shifts again on track three, “O Pastor Animarum,” written in Germany in the 1050s by Hildegard of Bingen, and featuring the singing of Lee. On “Tantric Grace,” Cunio accompanies the monks on piano and strings, and the piece unfolds slowly to allow great introspection. In this, as in all the texts of the Gyuto Monks, the actual words and their meanings are secret.

“Unity of Life,” explains Cunio, “is a live recording and the epitome of this project as the ‘Homage’ and ‘Invocation’ chants of the Gyuto Monks are heard throughout the recitation of the ‘Sh’mah Yisrael,’ a prayer of Baghdadi Judaism.” “Unity of Life” has a full ensemble: The Gyuto Monks, Kim Cunio singing and playing harmonium and tanpura, Heather Lee singing, Anne Hildyard singing and playing flute, Llew Kiek on oud and Tunji Beier on percussion. The piece “Mahakala” is central to the life of a Gyuto Monk and is chanted alone, here by Lobsang Tsetan (also playing the traditional Nga Chen drum) and accompanied by Ash Dargan on the didgeridoo. “Lament for a Lost Home” is a new composition by Kim Cunio using a poem by contemporary Iraqi poet Bader Shakir Al-Sayyab and featuring Iraqi string master Nawres Al-Freh (joza and violin), plus Lee singing in her operatic voice while the monks chant at their deepest in a cycle of six beats, and capturing a shared symbolism between both Tibet and Iraq as lost homelands for the thousands of refugees forced to flee. “As The Sun Sets” is a solo piano piece by Cunio inspired by his time with the monks. “The Suffering of the World” is based on the favorite prayer of the Dalai Lama and is sung by the nine-year-old Samarai (Babu) Cunio.

“Working with the Gyuto Monks reminds me that it is possible in this life of ours to embody the qualities we value. If the Gyuto Monks can preserve such dedication and practice, we can be motivated to do more, both for ourselves and for others,” states Cunio. “I feel this album heralds the beginning of a wonderful musical journey together as well as a support to the grandest of spiritual ambitions.”

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Acoustic Guitarist Ciro Hurtado Is A Master Of Gentle Latin-Based World-Fusion
Jul 20
2016
CIRO HURTADO

Many of guitarist Ciro Hurtado’s earliest memories are of the jungle, the Amazonian rainforest in his homeland of Peru, the world’s most bio-diverse place, an isolated and barely-populated wilderness with many tall broad-leaved trees and liana climbing vines forming a high canopy. Hurtado, who moved to California when he was 20, named his new album Selva (Spanish for jungle) and continues to explore the sounds of Peruvian folk music mixed with music from other countries that he first heard on short-wave radio as a child.

In fact, Hurtado has become one of the leading proponents of a new world-fusion blend that often uses elements of native Peruvian music -- whether it is rhythms from the Amazon Basin jungle or flute melodies from the Andes mountain tribes -- as a base which he then incorporates with a variety of styles from other Latin cultures as well as the United States and India. Hurtado, who gained early acclaim as a guitarist, is now also acknowledged as a top composer, arranger and producer of Latin-based world-fusion. Although he sometimes performs solo on acoustic guitar, he most often brings together a wide-array of musicians and singers fluent with many different musical genres and instruments.

“I spent the early years of my childhood in Moyobamba, a small town located in the Peruvian rainforest, about 500 miles northeast of Lima where I eventually went to school,” Hurtado says. “At that time Moyobamba was completely isolated from the rest of the country. There were no roads, trains or boats to get there. The only form of arrival was via airplane, a long, very bumpy trip crossing the Andes on a Douglas DC3 plane from World War II. At first the town had no electricity or running water. When electricity was finally available for two hours a day, my window to the rest of the world was the radio. I listened to stations from Lima as well as neighboring countries such as Ecuador, Colombia and Brazil. On short-wave radio I could catch Radio Moscow, the BBC from London and Radio La Habana Cuba which expanded my awareness of many musical styles including blues, jazz and rock. My taste in music became very eclectic from the very beginning, which is reflected on this album. I had heard Peruvian folk music all my life, and members of my family played it on guitar, but as a child, the first time I heard The Beatles on the radio, I also became mesmerized by rock’n’roll.”

With Selva, Ciro Hurtado has released nine albums under his own name (In My Mind, Tales From Home, The Magic Hour, Guitarra, Echoes of the Andes, Guitarrista, Los Angeles Blues and Ayahuasca Dreams). Most of the recordings feature ensemble music with a few solo guitar tracks (although Guitarrista and Los Angeles Blues are primarily solo guitar). His last three recordings received international marketing campaigns, found a passionate audience in the world-fusion and new age music genres, went Top 5 on the international Zone Music Reporter Top 100 album airplay chart and made the lists of the Top 5 best world music albums of the year named by the radio programmers reporting to ZMR.

Many of Hurtado’s recordings are available online for purchase as CDs and/or digital downloads at CDbaby, Amazon, iTunes and a variety of other sales sites. More information about the artist and his music is available at cirohurtado dot com.

Hurtado also is a founding member and currently the musical director of the band Huayucaltia (pronounced why-you-call-TEE-ah) that has group members from Argentina, Peru, Colombia, Mexico and the United States. “In this group I have gotten the chance to explore virtually every kind of Latin rhythm,” he says. He has appeared on and co-produced their seven albums -- Despertar, Caminos, Horizontes, Amazonas, Origenes, Destinos and El Tiempo. During the past decade the group performed “Misa Criolla” by Argentine composer Ariel Ramirez at the Hollywood Bowl to critical acclaim, and performed four times with the Los Angeles Master Chorale at the Walt Disney Concert Hall. The last two performances featured a modern-classical piece specifically written for the band and chorale by renowned composer Gabriela Lena Frank.


The music on Ciro Hurtado’s Selva album is Latin-guitar-based; he plays acoustic guitar on every tune (and occasionally electric guitar or charango). He plays solo guitar on “Zamba Triste” and features just his guitar and the vocals of his wife, Cindy Harding, on “Solo Tu.” But on the rest of the album Hurtado surrounds himself with both Cindy and other top-flight musicians and vocalists (females singing in Spanish). The recording contains five instrumentals, another mostly instrumental piece (“Un Pacto de Amor”), and seven compositions with singing (one with wordless vocals -- “Rio”). In addition to singing on several tracks, Harding also plays ethnic South American flutes (quena, zamponas) and the requinto jarocho guitar.

Other special guests include members of Sabia and Cojunto Jardin (Libby Harding, Gary Johnson and Cindy Harding), Trio Ellas (Stephanie Amaro, Nelly Cortez and Suemy Gonzalez) and Gliese 229 (Rosalia Leon), as well as Grammy winners Ricky Kej (from India) on keyboards and Wouter Kellerman (from South Africa) on alto flute on “Pacto de Amor.” Kej also played on “Un Pacto de Amor” (featuring Butto on bansuri flute and Vanil Veigas on santoor). Some of the other key supporting players include bassist Guillermo Guzman; drummer/percussionist Ricardo “Tiki” Pasillas; Julio Ledezma on drums, bombo, cajon and other Latin percussion instruments; Gino Gamboa on cajon and quijada; and Luis Perez on pre-Columbian instruments (on “Corre, Salta y Vuela” and “Chullachaqui.”

Ciro began playing guitar at age nine, and started studying it seriously when he was 13. He played acoustic guitar in traditional folk ensembles and electric guitar in rock groups. After moving to the United States, he studied at the prestigious Guitar Institute of Technology. Hurtado appeared on the Strunz and Farah Misterio album and toured for four years with this popular group including concerts at the Montreaux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, the Havana Classical Guitar Festival in Cuba, and the Kennedy Center in Washington DC. Hurtado has returned to Peru for performances, tours with Strunz and Farah and Huayucaltia, and more recently several times for solo concerts.

Hurtado was awarded the prestigious Durfee Master Musician Fellowship. “The highlight of that experience was playing with and collaborating with musicians from Africa, Japan, Iran, Ireland and Vietnam. I felt like we were creating universal music.” In addition, Hurtado has produced and recorded albums for Michele Greene, Conjunto Jardin, Rosalia Leon and numerous others. As a composer, Hurtado has scored and participated musically in various feature films and documentaries such as Ron Fricke’s classic film “Baraka,” “Dead Women in Lingerie,” “Max is Missing,” “Hope Street,” “Monsters,” “Peru: The Royal Tour” and “From Wharf Rats to Lord of the Docks.” In addition, Hurtado has toured extensively by himself with a show called “One Guitar, Many Stories” that pairs his compositions with stories to illustrate the cultural and social contexts behind the music.

Hurtado has studied a wide range of Latin music plus rock, blues, new age, folk, jazz, classical, flamenco, Celtic, African and Middle-Eastern music and numerous other styles. In the ‘70s and ‘80s he listened to rock (The Eagles and Fleetwood Mac), jazz (John McLaughlin’s Mahavishnu Orchestra and Pat Metheny) and blues (B.B. King, Albert King and Freddie King). Paco de Lucia inspired Hurtado to study Spanish music and flamenco. He also enjoys Afro-Peruvian music “because I heard that music played in the streets in Peru when I was young.” Additionally Hurtado has enjoyed listening to acoustic guitarists such as Pierre Bensusan, Tommy Emmanuel, Laurence Juber, Michael Hedges and Andrew York.

“With my music I am always exploring my roots, both the early influences from Peru and also the cultural diversity I encountered when I moved to Los Angeles,” Hurtado says. “I have worked hard for many years to combine all my influences and make my own style so that I don’t sound exactly like anyone else. My music is a reflection of the many people, cultures and musical styles that have touched my life. I truly believe music knows no borders.”
Music CD Release
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Geoff Hall's Understanding The Signs Album Features Lovely Orchestration
Jul 20
2016
GEOFF HALL

Multi-instrumentalist, composer, and producer Geoff Hall has released a new age, orchestral-ambient debut album, Understanding the Signs. “The CD is a collection of instrumental pieces, each written and orchestrated to depict a particular image, story, and feeling,” states Hall. “While remaining true to individual, everyday experiences, the pieces are also symbolic of our ability to recognize and respond to the world around us – the signs.”

Hall, a graduate of the prestigious Berklee College of Music Professional Program, composed these modern instrumental pieces by combining elements of electronic, film, new age, ambient, and neo-classical music. Featuring gentle melodies, a variety of synthesized sounds, carefully arranged string sections, and orchestral instrumentation; these original compositions pull the listener into a well-developed soundscape.

“When I finished the CD and stepped back to think about how these pieces might fit together - musically and emotionally - I realized there could be a connection to this music for other people. It's easy to get caught up in the daily routine, the stress of a job, the often-hard realities of the choices we have to make. But some people find their way to the things that really matter. That awareness helps those people to see and understand the value of 'the little things' and to appreciate the 'small moments' in their lives. Ultimately, I think that leads to bigger questions like, 'what am I doing every day and why,' 'if I only get one shot at life, am I spending my time the way I should be,' 'What's really important?' Understanding the signs that are in front of us every day and coming to that awareness is a personal journey for those who have the ability to make it. These compositions attempt to capture elements of those moments. They represent some of the thoughts, emotions, and events we all experience. Whether it's sorrowful, hopeful, triumphant, lonely, wistful, exhilarated or reflective, I believe there's something in these pieces that people can relate to.”

For more information about Geoff Hall and his music, visit his website at www.geoffhallcomposer.com. Understanding the Signs is available in the CD format and as digital downloads at a wide variety of online sales sites including iTunes (mastered for iTunes available), CDBaby, eMusic and other outlets. Hall’s music can also be heard on over 90 streaming radio sites including Pandora and Spotify.

Born in Virginia, Hall moved frequently as a child, but spent the majority of his developmental years in Memphis, Tennessee. His earliest memories of music are of listening to his parents play John Denver records at home and of the orchestral concert performances on the Fourth of July. At age 12 he began playing guitar when a friend introduced him to the rock‘n’roll music of Rush and taught him some basic chords. “In those days I was influenced by a wide range of guitar players -- Alex Lifeson of Rush, Eric Johnson, Yngwie Malmsteen, Trevor Rabin of Yes, David Gilmore of Pink Floyd, and Andy Summers of the Police among others.”

Throughout his teens and early twenties Hall performed in a local rock band and as a solo act. Hall continued to study music and music theory throughout his teen and college years. At 21, “I was introduced to acoustic fingerstyle music and heard Will Ackerman for the first time. I fell in love with that style of music, and my emphasis shifted from electric to acoustic, both steel-string and nylon-string. I also started listening to Alex de Grassi, Franco Morone, Don Ross, Michael Hedges, Andrew York, Ottmar Liebert, and others in that solo guitar space. That was when I got serious about acoustic guitar and shifted, almost completely, to acoustic fingerstyle.”

Hall spent the first half of his music career performing on guitar and the latter half studying piano/keyboards/synthesizers, composing, orchestrating, arranging, and producing - while managing to continue playing both electric and acoustic guitar along the way. He has studied and performed electric, acoustic fingerstyle, and classical guitar across numerous genres that include solo guitar, classical, folk, rock, and heavy metal. Hall is especially grateful for the guitar instruction he received over the years from legendary players such as Shawn Lane, Alex de Grassi, and Franco Morone.

The next musical evolution for Hall encompassed his passion for film scores. “When I was a teenager learning about guitar from Shawn Lane, he was a huge fan of film scoring and an accomplished pianist. He helped expand my awareness of film scores. Years later, I heard the soundtracks for the films Gladiator, Braveheart and others, and realized the impact and complexity of orchestral music.” The works of John Williams, Hans Zimmer, Harry Gregson-Williams, and James Horner have inspired Hall, and the styles of these and other composers echo in Hall’s film score compositions, some of which can currently be heard on SoundCloud. Hall’s study program at Berklee College focused on “Orchestration and Scoring for Film and Television.”

In the early 2000s Hall purchased his first keyboard, built his own studio, and began to explore the possibilities of creating orchestrated works using a combination of live musicians and modern technologies. “When composing I will often begin by sitting down at our piano; I have always found it easier to visualize concepts on the piano as opposed to the guitar,” explains Hall. “I often start with piano to begin ‘sketching’ where I generate the initial idea, melody lines, harmonies, and progressions. Then I move those ideas to my studio and begin orchestrating them through a MIDI keyboard where I have access to a huge range of sonic possibilities. From that point, the final orchestration and arranging falls into place.”

Although Hall plans to play guitar prominently on future recordings, a nylon-string guitar is only heard on one piece, “Gone But Not Forgotten,” from the Understanding the Signs album. The music on the project was created using a wide range of instrumentation. Everything from modern synthesizers to ethnic instruments to traditional orchestral instruments were used — and in many cases, blended — to create the sonic ambience in these soundscapes. In addition to a brass section on “Gone But Not Forgotten,” tympani on “Perseverance,” and cymbals on “Knowing,” Hall employs some ethnic instrumentation including the bazantar, a 38-string acoustic bass most often used in East Indian music, on “To Go Alone”; African drumming on “Toward a Perfect Moment”; and a variety of synthesized and ethnic drums on “The Run” just to name a few.

The album begins with “The Run,” an energetic, yet somehow relaxed and flowing, modern hybrid-orchestral piece with a strong rhythm and a prominent cello section. That piece is about the harmony you can achieve with your surroundings and that rare out-of-body experience you can have when you've worked hard enough to earn it. While athletes are familiar with this experience, it can also apply to any other hard-won success in life.” “To Go Alone,” the most ambient composition on the album, exudes a high and lonely vibe that represents the journey or trial of an individual who must find a way on his/her own. The title piece, “Understanding the Signs,” uses the five voices of an orchestral string section to layer a series of beautiful melodies, countermelodies, and harmonies featuring everything from multi-layered arpeggios to pizzicato and sustained strings. While the instrumentation and arrangement typically lend themselves to a decidedly classical style, the piece also features a modern compositional approach with an uplifting energetic feel.

“Toward a Perfect Moment” features synthesizers, effected piano, strings with various effects, and ethnic drumming. The piece has strong forward momentum and captures the emotion you feel when you're on your way to a special destination or event. The slow and sorrowful “Gone But Not Forgotten” utilizes nylon-string guitar, a boys choir, piano, horns, and strings, especially a strong cello line. It combines a sense of both loss and reflection. “Perseverance” features an ambient vocal line that transitions to a strong percussion section with triumphant energy. “Knowing” depicts awareness both learned and innate. This tune flows along with rhythmic and melodic piano, synth, and a blend of traditional and effected percussion. The orchestral “Something More” is a reflective piece that lends emotional weight to many everyday questions about the direction of our lives and what might be next.

“It's exciting to have completed Understanding the Signs,” states Hall. “I hope that anyone who takes the time to listen will find some personal connection with these pieces.”

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