IAN HERMAN / SEAN HARKNESS - DUET
"Duet" is the dazzling joint venture from two of New York City's most ubiquitous musicians: pianist Ian Herman and guitarist Sean Harkness. Both are A-List arrangers, music directors, and accompanists for name brand artists and productions. This album is Ian and Sean sharing with you the music they compose on their own for the pure pleasure of creating. The all-original instrumental pieces include Jazz, Blues, Latin, Pop, and a little classical thrown in the mix. Ian and Sean met in the environment of accompanying great singers and theatre productions. Their musical and personal chemistry inspired them to explore their respective original compositions as duets. The results are extraordinary. If nothing else, it's a complete blast! Recorded live in the studio at Chung King Studios, New York by Ron Allaire.
JOYCE ELAINE YUILLE - WELCOME TO MY WORLD
Joyce Elaine Yuille co‐wrote most of the songs on the album, original compositions and her lyrics that reveal her profound nature through music – “I wrote a number of songs that kind of reflect my life situation, situations in my friends lives, world events, situations I see daily, maybe just walking down the streets.” Songs like “Late I Rise”, a tune that speaks about perseverance and staying positive, or “Come With Me (The Ride Is Free)”, where she urges us to forsake our biases, to refuse to partake in prejudices and judgement and just enjoy our time on earth, respecting others and ourselves. “A Time For Love Again”, composed by Marco Bianchi with Joyce’s lyrical skills, is another example of how this album goes beyond music and expresses a powerful and strong message: with this song Joyce speaks about disillusionment in love, telling us how thereʼs no sense in closing ourselves in a shell and giving into the fear of feeling and the ability to love again. We can all love again, reach out to others and feel amorous again. The album also includes some stand out covers, classics such as Marvin Gayeʼs “Itʼs Madness” and Donny Hathawayʼs “Trying Times”. The album features the renowned and astounding Finnish sax player Timo Lassy and his band – musicians who are amongst some of the best Jazz players on the international jazz scene. Timo and his guys bring that extra something, a subtlety with a powerful impact and a groove that was needed to fulfill the dream and the vision of Joyce Elaine Yuille. Joyce has excitedly stated, “these guys are wickedly fantastic, I keep telling everyone, donʼt close your eyes on Finnish Jazz scene, because these guys are really kicking major ”! She smiles…
RANDY ROBERTS & THE CAPITAL STROKES - CS
Randy Roberts & The Capital Strokes are a 12 element Italian funk outfit bringing the sound of mid 70s grooves directly into the now with a combination of tight musicianship and explosive energy. Led by frontman Randy Roberts, this group has become a stable presence at Porretta Soul Festival from 2012 onwards, and has taken their particular blend of funk, soul, jazz and R&B to clubs far and wide in Italy and beyond, such as Switzerland (including Estival in Lugano), Montenegro, Serbia and Romania. It’s no surprise that music runs in Randy‘s family, as his father, American singer Rocky Roberts, was a pioneer representative of soul and R&B in Italy who rose to fame in the 60s. Following in his father’s footsteps, for the past few years Randy“the Reverend” has been preaching a stone cold groove alongside Roman band The Capital Strokes. Opener "They Wanna Funk Me Up" immediately sets the pace of the album, with a riff that clearly draws from Curtis Mayfield's "Freddie's Dead" and provides a bridge between past and present. While "I Can't Do Without Love" channels Prince's classic song "Kiss" in an 80s-influenced blend of funk and rock. From first single "Oh Yeah" that fully displays the group's trademark sound, made of blasting horns and contagious rhythms, to anthem "Do It Like The Strokes" with its uptempo groove, or standout track "The Sound of Love" with its smooth vibes, "CS" delivers a powerful punch of sounds that is sure to place Randy Roberts & The Capital Strokes at the forefront of Italy's contemporary funk scene!