Yearly Archives: 2004

Gordon Chambers: Introducing Gordon Chambers

Urban soul singer-songwriter Gordon Chambers’ days of writing hits for others may be ending. His debut CD stands out for its emotion, mood and musicianship. Chambers flips the script for urban pop featuring male vocalists. Instead of singing to women, … Continue reading

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Southern Backtones: Southern Backtones

The band calls it "music noir." But the third, self-titled recording by Houston’s Southern Backtones is really philosophical rock. The songs are rich-sounding, well-crafted rockers with plenty of rootsy and modern influences. But the lyrics are provocative and thoughtful in … Continue reading

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Alan Silvestri: The Polar Express

Film-composer Alan Silvestri has worked with Director Robert Zemeckis for many years. His latest soundtrack is for "The Polar Express," a famous Christmas book that the film’s creators turned into a movie about a boy’s belief in himself. The soundtrack … Continue reading

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Jon Hammond: Late Rent

Jon Hammond says "the fingers are the singers.’" The latest CD from this exceptional and soulful Hammond organist is the proof. "Late Rent" draws on decades of great recording sessions and top live performances to showcase his own playing and … Continue reading

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Ditty Bops: Here, There, Everywhere

The Ditty Bops are the Los Angeles-based duo of Amanda Barrett and Abby DeWald, whose debut recording "Here, There, Everywhere," was produced by Mitchell Froom. The pair, also multi-instrumentalists, sing upbeat, harmony-rich, quirky songs against a musical backdrop blending country … Continue reading

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Augusta Read Thomas: …words of the sea…

Augusta Read Thomas is the composer-in-residence at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. "Words of the Sea," her second self-produced recording of 2004, features the title work and "In My Sky at Twilight." These are exciting, modern compositions filled with great sweeps … Continue reading

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Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey: Walking With Giants

Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey is best known for exciting live shows. In their first studio recording in three years, "Walking With Giants," pianist Brian Haas, bassist Reed Mathis and drummer Jason Smart play rich, melodic pieces that are equally composed … Continue reading

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Maurice Brown: Hip To Bop

Jazz trumpeter-composer Maurice Brown’s "Hip to Bop" is a stunning debut. Ellis L. Marsalis, Jr. wrote the liner notes and for good reason. Brown and his quintet are playing exceptional bebop-influenced jazz with great emotion, finesse and musicality. Brown, who’s … Continue reading

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Hem: Eveningland

Less than two years after a critically acclaimed debut, Hem has revived the ‘countrypolitan’ sound of the ’70s. The eight-piece band, featuring Sally Ellyson’s smoothe, detached vocals, has recorded a CD mixing country, folk and tin pan alley songs backed … Continue reading

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Deb Ferrara: Anything But Ordinary

Deb Ferrara is a singer-songerwiter-guitarist who’s written plenty of material for others, but now has her own pop-rock CD. Deb loves big electric guitar riffs and melodic hooks, but it’s her compelling voice and edgey lyrics that stand out on … Continue reading

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