Tag Archives: jazz
Records and recording
LONDON — Tucked in a trendy co-working complex in West London, just past the food court and the payment processing start-up, is perhaps the most technologically backward-looking record company in the world.
LONDON — Tucked in a trendy co-working complex in West London, just past the food court and the payment processing start-up, is perhaps the most technologically backward-looking record company in the world.
The Electric Recording Co., which has been releasing music since 2012, specializes in meticulous recreations of classical and jazz albums from the 1950s and ’60s. Its catalog includes reissues of landmark recordings by Wilhelm Furtwängler, John Coltrane and Thelonious Monk, as well as lesser-known artists favored by collectors, like the violinist Johanna Martzy.
But what really sets Electric Recording apart is its method — a philosophy of production more akin to the making of small-batch gourmet chocolate than most shrink-wrapped vinyl.
Its albums, assembled by hand and released in editions of 300 or fewer — at a cost of $400 to $600 for each LP — are made with restored vintage equipment down to glowing vacuum-tube amplifiers, and mono tape systems that have not been used in more than half a century.
The goal is to ensure a faithful restoration of what the label’s founder, Pete Hutchison, sees as a lost golden age of record-making. Even its record jackets, printed one by one on letterpress machines, show a fanatical devotion to age-old craft.
“It started as wanting to recreate the original but not make it a sort of pastiche,” Hutchison said in a recent interview. “And in order not to create a pastiche, we had to do everything as they had done it.”
Electric Recording’s attention to detail, and Hutchison’s delicate engineering style in mastering old records, have given the label a revered status among collectors — yet also drawn subtle ridicule among rivals who view its approach as needlessly expensive and too precious by half.
An original Lyrec T818 tape machine that the label has painstakingly renovated, in its London studio.Credit…Tom Jamieson for The New York Times
Hutchison, 53, whose sharp features and foot-long beard make him look like a wayward wizard from “The Lord of the Rings,” dismissed such critiques as examples of the audiophile world’s catty tribalism. Even the word “audiophile,” he feels, is more often an empty marketing gimmick than a reliable sign of quality.
“Audiophiles listen with their ears, not with their hearts,” Hutchison said. He added: “That’s not our game, really.”
So what’s his game?
“The game is trying to do something that is anti-generic, if you like,” he said. “What we’re doing with these old records is essentially taking the technology from the time and remaking it as it was done then, rather than compromising it.”
To a large degree, the vinyl resurgence of the last decade has been fueled by reissues. But no reissue label has gone to the same extremes as Electric Recording.
In 2009, Hutchison bought the two hulking, gunmetal-gray machines he uses to master records — a Lyrec tape deck and lathe, with Ortofon amplifiers, both from 1965 — and spent more than $150,000 restoring them over three years. He has invested thousands more on improvements like replacing their copper wiring with mined silver, which Hutchison said gives the audio signal a greater level of purity.
The machines allow Hutchison to exclude any trace of technology that has crept into the recording process since a time when the Beatles were in moptops. That means not only anything digital or computerized, but also transistors, a mainstay of audio circuitry for decades; instead, the machines’ amplifiers are powered by vacuum tubes (or valves, as British engineers call them).
“We’re all about valves here,” Hutchison said on a tour of the label’s studio.
Mastering a vinyl record involves “cutting” grooves into a lacquer disc, a dark art in which tiny adjustments can have a big effect. Unusually among engineers, Hutchison tends to master records at low volumes — sometimes even quieter than the originals — to bring out more of the natural feel of the instruments.
He demonstrated his technique during a recent mastering session for “Mal/2,” a 1957 album by the jazz pianist Mal Waldron that features an appearance by Coltrane. He tested several mastering levels for the song “One by One” — which has lots of staccato trumpet notes, played by Idrees Sulieman — before settling on one that preserved the excitement of the original tape but avoided what Hutchison called a “honk” when the horns reached a climax.
“What you want to hear is the clarity, the harmonics, the textures,” he said. “What you don’t want is to put it on and feel like you’ve got to turn it down.”
These judgments are often subjective. But to test Hutchison’s approach, I visited the New Jersey home of Michael Fremer, a contributing editor at Stereophile and a longtime champion of vinyl. We listened to a handful of Electric Recording releases, comparing them to pressings of the same material by other companies, on Fremer’s state-of-the-art test system (the speakers alone cost $100,000).
Hutchison bought the two hulking, gunmetal-gray machines he uses to master records — both from 1965 — and spent more than $150,000 restoring them over three years.Credit…Tom Jamieson for The New York Times
I am often skeptical of claims of vinyl’s superiority, but when listening to one of Electric Recording’s albums of Bach’s solo violin pieces played by Martzy, I was stunned by their clearness and beauty. Compared to the other pressings, Electric Recording’s version had vivid, visceral details, yielding a persuasive illusion of a human being standing before me drawing a bow across a violin.
“It’s magical what they’re doing, recreating these old records,” Fremer said as he swapped out more Electric Recording discs.
Hutchison is a surprising candidate to carry the torch for sepia-toned classical fidelity. In the 1990s, he was a player in the British techno scene with his label Peacefrog; the label’s success in the early 2000s with the minimalist folk of José González helped finance the obsession that became Electric Recording.
Hutchison’s conversion happened after he inherited the classical records owned by his father, who died in 1998. A longtime collector of rock and jazz, Hutchison was entranced by the sound of the decades-old originals, and found newer reissues unsatisfying. He learned that Peacefrog’s distributor, EMI, owned the rights to many of his new favorites. Was it possible to recreate things exactly has they had been done the first time around?
After restoring the machines, Electric Recording put its first three albums on sale in late 2012 — Martzy’s solo Bach sets, originally issued in the mid-1950s.
Hutchison decided that true fidelity applied to packaging as well as recording. Letterpress printing drove up his manufacturing costs, and some of the label’s projects have seemed to push the boundaries of absurdity.
In making “Mozart à Paris,” for example, a near-perfect simulacrum of a deluxe 1956 box set, Hutchison spent months scouring London’s haberdashers to find the right strand of silk for a decorative cord. The seven-disc set is Electric Recording’s most expensive title, at about $3,400 — and one of the few in its catalog that has not sold out.
Hutchison defends such efforts as part of the label’s devotion to authenticity. But it comes at a cost. Its manufacturing methods, and the quality-control attention paid to each record, bring no economies of scale. So Electric Recording would gain no reduction in expenses if it made more, thus negating the question Hutchison is most frequently asked: Why not press more records and sell them more cheaply?
“We probably make the most expensive records in the world,” Hutchison said, “and make the least profit.”
Electric Recording’s prices have drawn head-scratching through the cliquey world of high-end vinyl producers. Chad Kassem, whose company Acoustic Sounds, in Salina, Kan., is one of the world’s biggest vinyl empires, said he admired Hutchison’s work.
“I tip my hat to any company that goes the extra mile to make things as best as possible,” Kassem said.
But he said he was proud of Acoustic Sounds’s work, which like Electric Recording cuts its masters from original tapes and goes to great lengths to capture original design details — and sells most of its records for about $35. I asked Kassem what is the difference between a $35 reissue and a $500 one.
He paused for a moment, then said: “Four hundred sixty-five dollars.”
Yet the market has embraced Electric Recording. Even amid the coronavirus pandemic, Hutchison said, its records have been selling as fast as ever, although the company has had some production hiccups. The only manufacturer of a fabric that Hutchison chose for a Mozart set in the works, by the pianist Lili Kraus, has been locked down in Italy.
The next frontier for Electric Recording is rock. Hutchison recently got permission to reissue “Forever Changes,” the classic 1967 psychedelic album by the California band Love, and said that the original tape had a more unvarnished sound than most fans had heard. He expects that to be released in July, and “Mal/2” is due in August.
But Hutchison seemed most proud of the label’s work on classical records that seemed to come from a distant era. He pulled out a 10-inch mini-album of Bach by the French pianist Yvonne Lefébure, originally released in 1955. Electric Recording painstakingly recreated its dowel spine, its cotton sleeve, its leather cover embossed in gold leaf.
“It’s a nice artifact,” Hutchison said, looking at it lovingly. “It’s a great record as well.”
Source : The New York Times
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ROD BEST ON RADIOSATELLITE
Over the years Rod Best has been involved in training and
developing of singers and musicians as well as writing music
arrangements for small stage band through to large
orchestras, direction of major musical productions and song
He studied at the Sydney Conservatorium of
Music in Jazz Improvisation and Advanced Arranging,
developing a wealth of experience in composition and
arrangement in jazz and contemporary keyboarding styles.
He has also studied under some great Australian jazz piano
players including Tony Ansell, Mike Nock, Michael
Bartolomei, Chuck Yates, Judy Bailey, Dave Fennell, Vince
Genova and Kevin Hunt. He studied at Jazz Worx in
Brisbane and received an Associate Diploma in Jazz.
Rod is married to Jan and lives in Queensland, Australia.
Rod has released five instrumental albums called “Best Of Smooth”,
“The Best of Rod Best”, “Groove On”, “A Peaceful Place”
and “The Next Level” as well as a number of instrumental
singles including “Sweet Emotion”, “In the Groove”, “Move ‘n’
Groove”, “Besty’s Bossa”, “Lazy Days”, “Turn Up the Heat”,
“Lasting Impression”, “Going Places”, “High Energy”, “Piano
Groove Time”, Smooth As”, “Listen Up Now”, and “A Good
He has also completed a collaboration EP project with
“Light of Love” from Chicago called “The Best Of Christmas”.
All Rod’s music is available at http://www.rodbestmusic.com or
from iTunes, CD Baby, Apple Music, Songtradr, Spotify or
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For RadioSatellite : Instrumental music / Lounge / Jazz :
Guido : Presenting his program : In the Zone (Lounge) (Netherlands)
Michael Maretimo : Presenting his program : Maretimo Sessions (Lounge) (Nethelands)
Steve Hart : Presenting his program : Cool Nights ( Soft Jazz) (New Zealand)
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Rojene Bailey : Presenting his “week end” program : Blues Time In the City ( Blues) (USA)
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FATS DOMINO 02-1928- 10-2017
Antoine “Fats” Domino, Jr. (February 26, 1928 – October 24, 2017) was an American pianist and singer-songwriter of Louisiana Creole descent.
He had 35 records in the U.S. Billboard Top 40, and five of his pre-1955 records sold more than a million copies, being certified gold. During 1955 to 1960, he had eleven top 10 hits and his record sales were reportedly surpassed only by Elvis Presley. During his career, Domino sold over 65 million records.His musical style was based on traditional rhythm and blues, accompanied by saxophones, bass, piano, electric guitar, and drums.
Video : Source Youtube : Historic Films Stock Footage Archive
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Folk, Jazz, Blues, Oldies on RS2
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Here is the presentation done on this video
COOL NIGHTS WITH STEVE HART
You love / like jazz??
You love / like Soft and smooth jazz??
You will LOVE : COOL NIGHTS
Proposed, produced and presented by STEVE HART
Daily at 08h00 PM Paris Time (07h00 PM GMT ) ( 02h00 PM Eastern US time)
After Midnight Paris Time ( at 01h00 AM paris ) (=> Midnight GMT ) (=> 07h00 PM Eastern US time)
Daily excepting for this time slot => Mondays 01h00 AM Paris / corresponding to saturdays 07h00 PM Eastern US
FATS WALLER …
Thomas Wright “Fats” Waller (May 21, 1904 – December 15, 1943) was an American jazz pianist, organist, composer, singer, and comedic entertainer, whose innovations to the Harlem stride style laid the groundwork for modern jazz piano, and whose best-known compositions, “Ain’t Misbehavin'” and “Honeysuckle Rose”, were inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1984 and 1999.
Thomas Wright Waller was the youngest of 11 children (five survived childhood) born to Adeline Locket Waller and Reverend Edward Martin Waller in New York City.
He started playing the piano when he was six and graduated to the organ of his father’s church four years later.
His mother instructed him as a youth. At the age of 14 he was playing the organ at Harlem’s Lincoln Theater and within 12 months he had composed his first rag. Waller’s first piano solos (“Muscle Shoals Blues” and “Birmingham Blues”) were recorded in October 1922 when he was 18 years old.
He was the prize pupil, and later friend and colleague, of stride pianist James P. Johnson.
Overcoming opposition from his clergyman father, Waller became a professional pianist at 15, working in cabarets and theaters. In 1918 he won a talent contest playing Johnson’s “Carolina Shout”, a song he learned from watching a player piano play it.
Waller ultimately became one of the most popular performers of his era, finding critical and commercial success in his homeland and in Europe. He was also a prolific songwriter and many songs he wrote or co-wrote are still popular, such as “Honeysuckle Rose”, “Ain’t Misbehavin'” and “Squeeze Me”.
Fellow pianist and composer Oscar Levant dubbed Waller “the black Horowitz”. Waller is believed to have composed many novelty tunes in the 1920s and 1930s and sold them for relatively small sums, the attributions of which, on becoming widely known, went only to a later composer and lyricist.
Standards alternatively and sometimes controversially attributed to Waller include “I Can’t Give You Anything but Love, Baby”.
Biographer Barry Singer conjectured that this jazz classic was written by Waller and lyricist Andy Razaf, and provides a description of the sale given by Waller to the NY Post in 1929—for $500, to a white songwriter, ultimately for use in a financially successful show (consistent with Jimmy McHugh’s contributions first to Harry Delmar’s Revels, 1927, and then to Blackbirds, 1928).
He further supports the conjecture, noting that early handwritten manuscripts in the Dana Library Institute of Jazz Studies of “Spreadin’ Rhythm Around” (Jimmy McHugh ©1935) are in Waller’s hand.
Jazz historian P.S. Machlin comments that the Singer conjecture has “considerable [historical] justification”.
Waller’s son Maurice wrote in his 1977 biography of his father that Waller had once complained on hearing the song, and came from upstairs to admonish him never to play it in his hearing because he had had to sell it when he needed money.
Maurice Waller’s biography similarly notes his father’s objections to hearing “On the Sunny Side of the Street” playing on the radio.
Waller recorded “I Can’t Give You…” in 1938, playing the tune but making fun of the lyrics; the recording was with Adelaide Hall who had introduced the song to the world at Les Ambassadeurs Club in New York in 1928.
The anonymous sleeve notes on the 1960 RCA Victor album Handful of Keys state that Waller copyrighted over 400 songs, many of which co-written with his closest collaborator Andy Razaf.
Razaf described his partner as “the soul of melody… a man who made the piano sing… both big in body and in mind… known for his generosity… a bubbling bundle of joy”.
Gene Sedric, a clarinetist who played with Waller on some of his 1930s recordings, is quoted in these same sleeve notes recalling Waller’s recording technique with considerable admiration: “Fats was the most relaxed man I ever saw in a studio, and so he made everybody else relaxed.
After a balance had been taken, we’d just need one take to make a side, unless it was a kind of difficult number.”
Waller played with many performers, from Nathaniel Shilkret and Gene Austin, to Erskine Tate, Fletcher Henderson, McKinney’s Cotton Pickers and Adelaide Hall, but his greatest success came with his own five- or six-piece combo, “Fats Waller and his Rhythm”.
His playing once put him at risk of injury. Waller was kidnapped in Chicago leaving a performance in 1926. Four men bundled him into a car and took him to the Hawthorne Inn, owned by Al Capone.
Waller was ordered inside the building, and found a party in full swing. Gun to his back, he was pushed towards a piano, and told to play. A terrified Waller realized he was the “surprise guest” at Capone’s birthday party, and took comfort that the gangsters did not intend to kill him.
It is rumored that Waller stayed at the Hawthorne Inn for three days and left very drunk, extremely tired, and had earned thousands of dollars in cash from Capone and other party-goers as tips.
In 1926, Waller began his recording association with the Victor Talking Machine Company/RCA Victor, his principal record company for the rest of his life, with the organ solos “St. Louis Blues” and his own composition, “Lenox Avenue Blues”.
Although he recorded with various groups, including Morris’s Hot Babes (1927), Fats Waller’s Buddies (1929) (one of the earliest multiracial groups to record), and McKinney’s Cotton Pickers (1929), his most important contribution to the Harlem stride piano tradition was a series of solo recordings of his own compositions: “Handful of Keys”, “Smashing Thirds”, “Numb Fumblin'”, and “Valentine Stomp” (1929).
After sessions with Ted Lewis (1931), Jack Teagarden (1931) and Billy Banks’ Rhythmakers (1932), he began in May 1934 the voluminous series of recordings with a small band known as Fats Waller and his Rhythm.
This six-piece group usually included Herman Autrey (sometimes replaced by Bill Coleman or John “Bugs” Hamilton), Gene Sedric or Rudy Powell, and Al Casey.
Waller wrote “Squeeze Me” (1919), “Keepin’ Out of Mischief Now”, “Ain’t Misbehavin'” (1929), “Blue Turning Grey Over You”, “I’ve Got a Feeling I’m Falling” (1929), “Honeysuckle Rose” (1929) and “Jitterbug Waltz” (1942). He composed stride piano display pieces such as “Handful of Keys”, “Valentine Stomp” and “Viper’s Drag”.
He enjoyed success touring the United Kingdom and Ireland in the 1930s. He appeared in one of the first BBC television broadcasts.
While in Britain, Waller also recorded a number of songs for EMI on their Compton Theatre organ located in their Abbey Road Studios in St John’s Wood. He appeared in several feature films and short subject films, most notably Stormy Weather in 1943, which was released July 21, just months before his death.
For the hit Broadway show Hot Chocolates, he and Razaf wrote “(What Did I Do to Be So) Black and Blue” (1929), which became a hit for Ethel Waters and Louis Armstrong.
Waller performed Bach organ pieces for small groups on occasion. Waller influenced many pre-bebop jazz pianists; Count Basie and Erroll Garner have both reanimated his hit songs. In addition to his playing, Waller was known for his many quips during his performances.
Between 1926 and the end of 1927, Waller recorded a series of pipe organ solo records. These represent the first time syncopated jazz compositions were performed on a full-sized church organ.
Waller contracted pneumonia and died on a cross-country train trip near Kansas City, Missouri, on December 15, 1943. His final recording session was with an interracial group in Detroit, Michigan, that included white trumpeter Don Hirleman.
Waller was returning to New York City from Los Angeles, after the smash success of Stormy Weather, and after a successful engagement at the Zanzibar Room, during which he had fallen ill.
More than 4,000 people attended his funeral in Harlem, which prompted Dr. Adam Clayton Powell, Jr., who delivered the eulogy, to say that Fats Waller “always played to a packed house.”
Afterwards he was cremated and his ashes were scattered, from an airplane piloted by an unidentified World War black aviator, over Harlem.
One of his surviving relatives is former Georgia Tech Yellow Jacket and current Baltimore Ravens wideout Darren Waller, who is Fats’ paternal great-grandson.
For-Piano- Jazz lovers… From Paris with love.
Adrian James “A.J.” Croce (born September 28, 1971 in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania) is an American singer-songwriter. He is the son of singer-songwriters Jim Croce and Ingrid Croce.
Shortly before his father’s death in a 1973 plane crash, Croce’s family moved west to San Diego, California, where he was raised by his mother, Ingrid Croce.
At the age of four Croce was completely blinded as the result of serious physical abuse by his mother’s boyfriend. Between the ages of four and ten, Croce gradually regained vision in his left eye. It was during this difficult time in Croce’s life that he began to play the piano. “I learned to play music by listening and playing along to the radio and to records…” Croce says, “At some point I was given the music of Ray Charles and Stevie Wonder as inspiration, which it was, and has been ever since.”
Croce’s first paying gig was at the age of 12, when he was paid $20 to perform at a Bar Mitzvah party. By the age of 16, Croce was performing regularly at San Diego nightclubs as a sideman and band leader. Croce reflected, “I was into every kind of music… you might say I was unfocused, but I consider an eclectic taste in music to be the foundation of versatility.” His house burned down when he was age 15.
Croce and his wife Marlo have two children, daughter Camille and son Elijah.
Ron Goldstein and Peter Bauman of Private Music signed Croce to his first recording contract at age 19.
He recorded two albums for Private Music: his self-titled debut, A. J. Croce, produced by T-Bone Burnett and John Simon, and That’s Me in the Bar, produced by Jim Keltner, and featuring artists such as Ry Cooder, David Hidalgo, and Keltner himself. Croce is also the owner/operator of his own record label, Seedling Records.
Croce’s third release, Fit to Serve, was recorded in Memphis, and produced by Jim Gaines, who had previously produced Van Morrison, Santana, and The Steve Miller Band. Croce then took a musical turn with the release of his album Transit. He explained, “I had been playing blues-based music for a long time, and I was ready to try something new.
“Transit was compared by critics to the work of John Lennon, Elvis Costello, Bob Dylan, and Van Morrison. Glen Starkey of New Times labeled Croce “a song crafter of the first order”.
Croce’s next three albums were self-produced. Adrian James Croce (Croce’s only pop-oriented album) was the only independently produced album of 2004 to chart in Top 40 charts in America. In Europe it was on the charts for six months, sitting in between songs by U2 and Coldplay. That same year Adrian James Croce won Best Pop album at the San Diego Music Awards.
His 2006 release Cantos on his own label Seedling Records notably features Ben Harper. In 2009, his album Cage of Muses was released on Seedling Records, garnering a 4-start review from Rolling Stone Magazine.
In 2013, Croce signed with Compass Records and has since released his latest album, Twelve Tales. Croce considers Twelve Tales to be his most ambitious recording project to date. He recorded two songs with each of six legendary producers in five U.S. cities throughout a year long period, at the same time releasing one song per month exclusively on iTunes in 2013.
The full album was released on CD and LP in 2014. The album’s producers are: the late ‘Cowboy’ Jack Clement, famous for his work with Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash; Rock n’ Roll Hall of Famer Allen Toussaint, notable producer of classic New Orleans recordings by artists such as Dr. John and Irma Thomas; Golden Globe-nominated Mitchell Froom, whose work includes Randy Newman and Crowded House; Grammy winning engineer and producer Kevin Killen, who has produced multiple albums by Elvis Costello; Notable A&R executive and record producer Tony Berg whose sessions have included Bob Dylan and Fiona Apple; and Greg Cohen, avant-garde bass player and producer, known for his work with Tom Waits.
Croce co-wrote a few of the songs on Twelve Tales, including one song with legendary songwriter Leon Russell. Croce’s albums have charted on eight radio charts including AAA, Blues, College, Jazz, and Americana.
He has performed as an opening act for artists such as Carlos Santana, Rod Stewart, Aretha Franklin, Dr. John, Lyle Lovett, James Brown, B.B. King, Dave Matthews, Earth, Wind and Fire, Rod Stewart and Ray Charles. Croce has sat in with many notable artists live, including Willie Nelson, Ben Harper, Ry Cooder, the Neville Brothers, Waylon Jennings, and David Hidalgo (Los Lobos). He has also performed on national television, on shows including The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Late Show with David Letterman, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, The Today Show, Good Morning America, MTV, CNN, and Austin City Limits.
In 2015 Croce’s performance on the show “Music City Roots” began airing nationwide on PBS, including in Los Angeles and Nashville. It will air on 85 stations across the country 2015. It was announced that later this year Compass Records will release a re-issue of Croce’s highly regarded sophomore album, “That’s Me In the Bar” for its 20th anniversary. All of Croce’s 2015 concerts will feature a set from that album.
J. Croce (1993)
That’s Me in the Bar (1995) including chekin’
Fit to Serve (1998)
Adrian James Croce (2004)
Early On – The American Recordings 1993–1998 (2005)
Cage of Muses (2009)
Twelve Tales (2014)
JAZZ WITH DENA TAYLOR
Based in Austin, TX, Dena Taylor is a jazz vocalist who harkens back to the days of smoke filled clubs and smoky voiced chanteuses.
Her sound is solid; without a lot of vocal gymnastics in the Jazz Standards she covers. She inhabits the songs and makes them her own – feeling happiness, anger, joy, sorrow, love and hate. She draws listeners in and allows them to relate to these songs all over again. Dena was named “Best Female Jazz Artist of the Year” by Indie Music Channel in 2014. Her album “The Nearness of You” showcases her vocal talents and reminds us that even though she is a “seasoned” artist singing Standards, these songs don’t lose their ability to move and touch the audience just because they may have fallen out of vogue.
Dena is so full of passion for these songs that her jovial attitude can’t help but be contagious. An engaging personality, Dena wants to share her love of Jazz Standards and the American Songbook with her audience. She has honed her craft over the years – spending 12 years abroad serving her country in the US military and, whenever possible, performing with touring USO shows. Then, upon her return, Dena settled in Florida where she took to the stage as a member of the prestigious Cocoa Village Playhouse “Gold Star” company. She also began to reestablish her solo career and released her cd “Round Midnight” in 2008. With a voice that contains a bit of a knowing edge reminiscent of Gladys Knight in her prime, Dena became a “go to” vocalist for national Jazz and Blues groups touring in Florida.
After relocating to Austin, TX, Dena continued her collaboration with some of the best musicians in the jazz and blues genres including GRAMMY® Award Winners guitarist Redd Volkaert and keyboardist Floyd Domino and Gold Record drummer Ernie Durawa. Volkaert and Durawa both worked on her second album, “Certitude” in 2010. One of the tracks from this effort, “Song for My Father,” was rewarded with an IAIRA Certification of “International Top 100 Hit” shortly after its release.The team worked so well together that Dena chose to work with them for her next record in 2014, “The Nearness of You.” She was subsequently named one of the Top Five Vocalists in the SingersUniverse ” Best Vocalist Of The Month” Competition, in addition to the aforementioned IMC 2014 Best Female Jazz Artist of the Year Award.
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The path to success hasn’t been an easy one for Dena. In 1999 she suffered a horrific car crash, resulting in a traumatic brain injury. The damage was so severe that it took Dena two years to learn to speak and walk again. She persevered through that and a battle with breast cancer to come out on the other side with an outlook on life that allows her to pursue her music with even more zeal. Learning not to be paralyzed by the fear of what “might happen” has kept Dena moving forward and gives her vocals a ripened maturity that just isn’t found in the pop stars of today.
And, in advance of some serious surgery on her throat, Dena joined forces with Austin powerhouse friends to take a musical walk from her beginnings in country and ending where she most happily lives and that is tucked inside the American Songbook. No last minute throw-together, “You’ve Changed” (scheduled release is January 2016) is a carefully thought out project and, whether it’s the last music she records or not .. it will certainly be one of her best.
In a pre-release review, Bree Noble (CEO of Women of Substance Radio) said, “With the opening notes of “You’ve Changed,” it’s clear that what has changed is that Dena Taylor has confidently taken the reins of her music career and is making bold, risky decisions that are paying off.”
While she was initially going to keep her most recent health challenge to herself, she decided to share the journey to her “new” normal through a blog in the hopes that it will encourage others!
Dena continues to share her musical gifts and donates her time to various charities that are close to her heart including her own charity, The Lullaby Project. This charity is supported by the beautiful album, Lullabies, recorded and released in 2015.
Website: DENA TAYLOR
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