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A Cappella Vocal Group SWEET HONEY IN THE ROCK Sets Final Fall 40th Anniversary Shows for 2014 Performance Season

 

 

September 4, 2014, New York, NY – Sweet Honey In The Rock, the venerable and  Grammy nominated a cappella ensemble who've built a legacy for merging an inimitable and distinct harmonic vocal blend with a veracious commitment to activism, social justice, equality and freedom have announced their final fall shows to commemorate their SWEET HONEY IN THE ROCK - 40TH ANNIVERSARY: FORTY & FIERCE year and milestone achievement.

Sweet Honey launched their anniversary in mid-February of 2014 at the Zellerback Theater in Berkeley. CA, and have been performing throughout the year. The SWEET HONEY IN THE ROCK - 40TH ANNIVERSARY SHOW fall run will kick off September 18th at the University of Nevada/Reno's Nightingale Concert Hall in Reno, Nevada. Sweet Honey's tour will comprise fifteen shows and culminate on November 22nd at the Edmonds Center For The Arts in Edmond, WA. It will also include the final SWEET HONEY IN THE ROCK: 40TH ANNIVERSARY, FORTY & FIERCE larger production on October 14th at the Thrivent Financial Hall/Fox Cities Performing Arts Center in Appleton, WI.

Musically, the show relies on the depth of the ensemble's varied repertoire and newly arranged medleys and arrangements of some of their classics. Throughout the show each member will also share their own intimate personal stories in dialogue and perform influential songs that have highlighted their incredible journey over the past four decades. Audiences will also be warmed up and treated to a special pre-show presentation entitled “She-Rocks 5 Radio,” that will comprise an audio compilation of their most revered songs. The program is hosted by DJ Merk (Epatha Merkerson) and produced by Louise Robinson and Jordon Maillard Ware.

"We're extremely excited and feel blessed to have experienced and enjoyed such longevity, and we're very thankful to all our loyal fans who have stood by us all these years," stated Sweet Honey original member Carol Maillard. "They have been the driving force that has fueled all our artistic endeavors, and we're elated and happy to celebrate and share this special show with our fans and show them why we all feel "Forty & Fierce!”  Sweet Honey comprises Louise Robinson, Carol Maillard, Nitanju Bolade Casel, Aisha Kahlil and Shirley Childress (American Sign Interpreter).

Sweet Honey In The Rock began creating its adventurous and diverse mixture of blues, African, jazz, gospel and R & B music as a quartet in 1973. Formed by Dr. Bernice Reagon (who retired in 2004) the ensemble's patented sound was honed during a workshop at the D.C Black Repertory Theater Company in Washington, DC. Since that time, they have performed throughout the world, including Africa, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, at many of the premiere venues in the United States, released 23 recordings, been featured in documentaries and amassed a distinguished list of honors, awards and accolades.

The ensemble just returned from a short tour of Belize (August 26th - 31st) as part of the longstanding Arts Envoy Program and initiative by the US State Department that's hosted by the US Embassy in Belize. Sweet Honey performed concerts in Belize City, Dangriga and Placencia and conducted artist exchange workshops with a couple noted Belizean artists. 

Last year the band successfully launched their first ever fan based fundraising campaign with the IndieGogo online platform.  Funds derived from the campaign have been used to produce their 40th Anniversary show. They also toured Europe and Australia and performed at  the National Memorial Service for the late Nelson Mandela presented at the National Cathedral in Washington DC and were recipients of distinguished awards by the Search for Common Ground Organization in DC and "The Keeper Of Flame" Award" presented at the national convention and Signature Gala of the Delta Sigma Theta Society in Washington, DC.

In 2012, they performed at the unveiling ceremonies for the Martin Luther King monument on the National Mall. They also debuted their first ever orchestral collaboration, providing the lyrics for composer William Banfield’s “Symphony 10: Affirmations for a New World,” co-commissioned by the National Symphony Orchestra (Christoph Eschenbach, Music Director) and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, DC; the Minnesota Orchestra, (Osmo Vänskä, Music Director); and the Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, released a thought-provoking single and video, “Are We A Nation,” inspired by the controversial immigration law that was enacted in Arizona . The song captured a Gold Songwriter Award from the 27th Mid-Atlantic Song Contest and was featured on an all-star compilation, “Bordersongs,” that raised money for the No More Deaths organization, which provides water and humanitarian aid along the Arizona/Mexico border. Their latest 2-CD set, “A Tribute – Live! Jazz at Lincoln Center,” pays homage to some of the great female African-American vocalists whose songs helped shape the group, including Abbey Lincoln, Odetta, Miriam Makeba, and Nina Simone. 

The complete list of dates are listed below:

September 18th - University of Nevada/Reno Nightingale Concert Hall, Reno, NV

September 27th - Washington State University, Beasley Coliseum, Pullman, WA

October 8th - Georgia Southern University, Performing Arts Center, Statesboro,GA

October 9th - Wake Forest University, Wait Chapel, Winston, Salem

October 11th - Georgia State University, Rialto Center, Atlanta, GA

October 14th - Thrivent Financial Hall/Fox Cities Performing Arts Center, Appleton, WI

October 16th - St. Catherine University, O'Shaughnessy, St. Paul, MN

October 17th - Dimnent Chapel, Holland, MI

October 19th - The Center For The Performing Arts, Carmel, IN

October  22nd - Stoughton Opera House, Stoughton, WI

October 23rd - Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, IL

October 26th - Macomb Center For The Performing Arts, Clinton Township, MI

October 30th - East Tennessee State University, Martha Street Culp Auditorium, Johnson City, TN

November 21st - Admiral Theater, Bremerton, WA

November 22nd - Edmonds Center For The Arts, Edmonds, WA 

For more information go to: www.sweethoneyintherock.org 
 

NEW CD FROM VOCALIST CARMEN LUNDY, ‘SOUL TO SOUL’ SET FOR RELEASE SEPTEMBER 23

A Myriad Of Special Guests Including Patrice Rushen, Geri Allen, Randy Brecker, Simphiwe Dana, Bennie Maupin, Carol Robbins, Warren Wolf And More

 

 

Los Angeles, California.  “Soul To Soul,” a passionate new song cycle from vocalist, songwriter, producer and musician Carmen Lundy, is set for release September 23rd, 2014 via Afrasia Productions.  “Soul To Soul”, Lundy’s 14th album, is the next chapter in her critically-acclaimed career as both a musical artist and a visual artist; a return to her roots but also an exploration of these roots -- and the journey that those roots can take you on.  The release of “Soul To Soul” will be accompanied by tour dates both in the U.S. and overseas.

 

Carmen Lundy began working on “Soul To Soul” well over a year ago in a very hands-on manner – literally composing, co-composing and arranging eleven of the thirteen tracks and then playing and recording all the instruments - including bass, drums, piano, guitar and percussion - in her home studio to get a working “feel” for how the music might sound. She then “sweetened” the songs by adding string sounds and other software instruments to elaborate and experiment with the aural mood of each track, interpreting and identifying with each track’s sound individually as well as part of the overall song sequence.  On the final CD, Lundy plays guitar on all tracks, piano and Rhodes on many tracks, and drums on two.

 

“I wrote the music with specific players in mind for each respective instrument,” says Lundy.  “My producer and label co-owner Elisabeth Oei encouraged me to reach out to those musicians whose music I have loved and have been inspired by; some of whom I had worked with but never recorded with. I consider these artists specialists on their instruments.  These are players who bring a distinctive sound to everything they play and

add another layer of individuality to my original music.”

 

Patrice Rushen, for example, is featured on nearly every track on “Soul To Soul” because of the deep musical connection Carmen felt with her.  “I could hear her sound in my music,” says Lundy, “Patrice creates these beautiful sonic palettes from which I could soar freely through the music.  This project would not be as special to me if it were not for her incredible contribution.”

 

Featuring the stellar talents of guest artists Patrice Rushen, Geri Allen, Randy Brecker, Mayra Casales, Simphiwe Dana, Bennie Maupin, Carol Robbins, Ada Rovatti, and Warren Wolf along with Carmen’s core rhythm section members Darryl Hall and

Jamison Ross, “Soul To Soul” invites the listener on an intriguing journey. Whether the source of inspiration comes from time spent in Sardinia, Italy (“Soul To Soul” and “Sardegna”) or from her hometown of Miami in the songs “Kindred Spirits” and “Grateful” – “It’s important to acknowledge and remember where you come from and all those who provide unwavering moral support” says Lundy; from the beauty of Mary Lou Williams’ “What’s Your Story, Morning Glory” - “Geri Allen and I have spent many years performing the works of this great pianist,” Lundy remarks, “I could not miss the chance to have yet another of the great pianists/composers of our time be a part of this musical journey”; to the sexy bossa nova beat of “Everything I Need”, the moods and moments of  “Soul To Soul” are genre-bending and traverse many borders, both literally and figuratively.

 

Of special note is the story of the track “Grace,” the result of a meeting with South African vocalist Simphiwe Dana.  At the time of the meeting – which coincided with tour dates Lundy and Dana had in Johannesburg and Los Angeles – Lundy was in the process of writing the song on guitar and had been haunted by it for months.  She then played the track for Dana who immediately began to sing the melody in her native tongue, and whose contribution to the track on the CD adds yet another dimension to the journey of “Soul To Soul.”

 

Added Lundy, “It is an honor to have these players joining in this majestic musical adventure.  I hope listeners – both new and established - enjoy the voyage.”

is also a celebrated mixed media artist and painter, and her works have been exhibited in New York at The Jazz Gallery in Soho, at The Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles, and at a month-long exhibition at the Madrid Theatre in Los Angeles, CA.  For additional information and media requests, please contact Chip Schutzman at Miles High Productions, 323-806-0400; e:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

A complete track listing with credits is as follows:

 

TRACK LISTING:

  1. Kindred Spirits  (Carmen Lundy)
  2. Life Is A Song In Me  (Carmen Lundy, Julie Raynor)
  3. Soul To Soul  (Carmen Lundy)
  4. When Will They Learn  (Carmen Lundy, Julie Raynor)
  5. Daybreak  (Carmen Lundy)
  6. Between Darkness and Dawn  (Carmen Lundy, Julie Raynor)
  7. Grace  (Carmen Lundy, Simphiwe Dana)
  8. Grateful Pt. 1  (Carmen Lundy)
  9. Grateful Pt. 2  (Carmen Lundy)
  10. Everything I Need  (Carmen Lundy)
  11. Don’t You Know How I Feel  (Marilyn Castilaw)
  12. Sardegna  (Carmen Lundy, Deborah Ash)
  13. What’s Your Story, Morning Glory  (Mary Lou Williams)

Personnel:

Carmen Lundy – Vocals (all), piano (track 1) Rhodes (track 11), keyboards (track 8), guitar (tracks 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12), drums (track 12), percussion (tracks 1, 6), string arrangements and programming

Patrice Rushen – piano, Rhodes, keyboards (all tracks except 8, 13)

Darryl Hall – acoustic bass, electric bass (all tracks)

Jamison Ross – drums, percussion (all tracks)

Geri Allen – piano (track 8, 13), Rhodes (tracks 6, 9)

Randy Brecker – trumpet (track 3, 10, 11), flugelhorn (track 3)

Mayra Casales – percussion, congas (all tracks except 13)

Simphiwe Dana – Vocals (track 7)

Bennie Maupin – tenor sax, soprano sax (tracks 5, 9)

Carol Robbins – harp (tracks 4, 5, 6, 10)

Ada Rovatti – tenor sax (track 3, 10)

Warren Wolf – vibes (tracks 5, 8, 12)

Background Vocals – Carmen Lundy, Patrice Rushen, Jamison Ross (track 2), plus Mayra Casales, Darryl Hall, Elisabeth Oei (track 7).

All songs composed and arranged by Carmen Lundy, C. Lundy Publishing/ASCAP except * by Marilyn Castilaw (Redfield Music/BMI); ** by Mary Lou Williams (Cecilia Music), Paul Francis Webster, Jack Lawrence; *** by Carmen Lundy and Julie Raynor (Castle Dream Music/ASCAP); **** by Carmen Lundy and Deborah Ash (Compashe Music/ASCAP); ^ by Carmen Lundy and Simphiwe Dana (Black Carrot Publishing).

Produced by Elisabeth Oei and Carmen Lundy

Recorded and Mixed by Don Murray at Firehouse Recording Studios, Pasadena, CA and Mixed at Afrasia Studios, Woodland Hills, CA. Basic tracks recorded and played by Carmen Lundy at Afrasia Studios.

Mastered by Doug Sax at Mastering Lab, Ojai, CA

CD Cover Photo by Victor Dlamini 

www.carmenlundy.com
 
   

SHOTGUN HOLLER SIGNS TO LONESOME DAY RECORDS Debut Album Mixes Traditional Bluegrass With A Modern Alternative Edge

(LEXINGTON, KY) - It's not often that a bluegrass band comes around sporting tattoos and singing about things that some radio stations of that genre might find a bit too left of center. But that's exactly what Randall Deaton liked about Shotgun Holler, the new five-piece bluegrass band with an edge hailing from all over Kentucky, when he signed them to his Lonesome Day Records this month.

 

"They are willing to tackle subject matter that is often shied away from in bluegrass music," says Deaton, who has known the band's co-founder and mandolin player Shawn Brock since before he launched his label in 2002. Brock actually performed guitar and mandolin on Lonesome Day Records' very first release by Sam Wilson and will also appear on the Bob Seger tribute record, Silver Bullet Bluegrass, which will be released later in the year. “Sean’s one of the most talented people I know,” adds Deaton.

 

On signing with Lonesome Day Records, the 33-year-old Louisville, KY-based Brock says, Lonesome Day is not afraid to take a chance. They are not into censorship. They don’t mind being on the cutting edge and trying something different. Lonesome Day is a very reputable label that has a very successful track record in placing new artists on the top and keeping established artists on the top and that’s where we are striving to be.

 

The subject matter tacked on the band’s forthcoming debut full-length album dives into some darker topics not usually heard in traditional bluegrass music, such as drug addiction and prostitution. “We don’t really fit the typical bluegrass mold of today,” explains Brock. “Instrumentally we are pretty recognizable as bluegrass. We’re using the traditional bluegrass instruments-banjo, guitar, upright bass, mandolin, and fiddle. Where we tend to cross into other areas is the material that we choose, which can be very non-traditional. Lyrically, all the songs aren’t necessarily wholesome.”

 

One such song is the original 1930’s Washboard Sam version of the “My Bucket’s Got a Hole In It” popularized later by Hank Williams. “We do the Washboard Sam lyrics, which are totally different than Hank’s.” One verse says, ‘They ain’t standing on the corner/Everything was so slow/Can’t make no money/Tricks ain’t walking no more. Another verse says, ‘Gonna sell moonshine in the day/An peddle dope all night.’ This is not what you hear on the radio today, though the song was written in the depression era. These things happen, but they aren’t sung about. We carry all the news, both good and bad. However that song doesn’t necessarily represent the project as a whole. Three band members love to write, and along with material from other writers, we are cutting 8 original tunes.”

 

It was one fateful day listening to the radio that inspired Brock, a long-time session musician who also has two jazz albums under his belt, to start Shotgun Holler in February of this year. “I was listening to a bluegrass radio station and it was kind of like a volcano was building up inside of me. It seemed like people were cutting this watered down sterile material singing about the same subject matter and no one is trying to sound different. I listened to five songs and couldn’t tell one artist from another. I have been playing bluegrass for 23 years, and in the 90’s I knew every artist who came on just by their sound. Blue Highway had a great distinctive sound, which was vastly different from the classic sound of the Bluegrass Album Band. Both are favorites of Shotgun Holler members, but each unit had their own thing going. I called friend, and former band member from the group Blue and Lonesome, Matt Jones and I said, ‘I’m sick of hearing singers and pickers imitate each other and cover songs that were just recorded three years ago. Lets put and band together and do what we’ve always tried to do-be different.’ His words to me were, ‘Man, I’ve just been waiting on you.’ From there, the two co-founders, Brock and Jones – who takes on lead vocals and guitar for the group – put a band together featuring seasoned players Gil Benson (fiddle), Rod Lunger (bass and vocals), and Donnie Stevens (banjo and vocals). With their impressive resumes, they were able to book shows before the band even had their first rehearsal.

 

Shotgun Holler will hit the studio on August 22 at Lonesome Day Studio in Booneville, Kentucky, with noted producer and Mountain Heart founding member Jim Van Cleve at the helm.  Van Cleve has produced award winning projects spanning a variety of genres for acts such as Mountain Heart, Newfound Road, Del Shields, Celebration of Life II (Musicians Against Childhood Cancer), Annabelle Road, his own Grammy Nominated solo project, and the IBMA Awards Show Theme, among others.

 

 

"We've all known Jim through is work and watched him rise through the ranks. Jimmy is at the forefront of the progressive edge, which is where we strive to be.  Lyrically this will be in territory that Jimmy has not been in before, but instrumentally it's still very edgy, very modern bluegrass which is a specialty of his," says Brock.

 
   

NEWFOUND ROAD FRONTMAN TIM SHELTON SETS FORTH ON SOLO DEBUT WITH MOVING NEW SINGLE “LEARNING HOW TO LIVE ALONE ”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – August 20, 2014 – An already well-respected frontman and singer in the bluegrass community, Tim Shelton rose to fame with his band NewFound Road. After signing to Rounder, a string of hits and critical praise, Shelton aims to venture into a brand new creative project as a solo artist, combining his love for rock, country, and folk. To introduce his solo effort, Shelton is giving away his first single, “Learning How To Live Alone” free to the public in exchange for an email address via his Facebook.

“I’ve always loved and appreciated all kinds of music, and it was almost nagging at me that I wanted to do something else … I didn’t want to deal with reinventing NewFound Road, I’d been wanting to do other things musically, to go other places, and so I thought, now is the time.”

 

Recorded in Nashville and produced by Barry Bales, this first single to debut his solo album is both heartbreaking and soothing to the ear that one can empathize about living a lonely, single life. Shelton’s crisp vocals and simple guitar riffs are what make it a solid country song and a memorable anthem.

 

Honest lyrics and Shelton’s pure voice are what make “Learning How To Live Alone” such a relatable song with it’s repetitive, convincing chorus and steady pace. Shelton’s confident introduction to his full-length debut is only driven by his respected reputation and vision.

 

“I just want to make music that isn’t necessarily traditional Bluegrass.  I love it, but I also love James Taylor, Jackson Browne, Rock, hard Rock, traditional Country—all of those.  Just music.”

 

Shelton plans to release a Jackson Browne-inspired album February 2015.

 

Follow Tim Shelton:

http://www.timsheltonmusic.net/

https://www.facebook.com/timsheltonmusic

https://twitter.com/TimSheltonMusic

http://instagram.com/timsheltonmusic

 
   

SARAH BORGES' NEW SOLO CD, RADIO SWEETHEART, DROPS JUNE 24

Singer/Songwriter Adds Tour Dates with Girls Guns And Glory

 

(BOSTON, MASS.) - She's been Boston's singing sweetheart for the past few years as part of Sarah Borges & the Broken Singles. But, now, the singer-songwriter is claiming that title of her own as she readies the release of her new solo record, Radio Sweetheart.

 

The 10-track album, set for release on June 24 via Booneville, Kentucky-based Lonesome Day Records, is a return to self for the artist. "I wrote songs that felt important to me. Before, I had a lot of co-writes, so a lot of opinions in the mix, and this time I was able to think of just what I wanted. It was scary and freeing at the same time," says Borges, who Rolling Stone magazine describes as "friendly pop–rock with bits of twang, rockabilly, and '50 pop."

 

One song in particular, "Radio Sweetheart," was a track that always held a special place in her musical heart, but never had a home until now. "I wrote that song when I was really young, just out of college. For me, it was this version of my childhood self and very personal - it just didn't feel right to record with the Broken Singles. But, now, it means a lot to have it on my new record," says the Taunton, Mass.-born artist.

 

Radio Sweetheart was the perfect title of her new album as well as it represents her newfound optimism as she embarks on a solo career. "I titled the album Radio Sweetheart out of hopefulness about this record. I decided to call myself the radio sweetheart in hope that it comes true," she admits.

 

The album was recorded at Woolly Mammoth Sound, which is owned by Dave Minehan, singer/guitarist of Boston rockers Neighborhoods as well as guitar player for the Replacements. Minehan also engineered the album while Steve Berlin, who played saxophone and keyboards with Los Lobos for 30 years, produced the record, which features a few very special guests - NRBQ's Terry Adams and Lone Justice's Ryan Hedgecock.

 

"I'm a huge fan of NRBQ and we sort of checked a chord from their song, 'Ridin' in My Car' on my song, 'The Waiting and the Worry.' So it was an honor to have their piano player Terry Adams play on it. When I'm writing songs I always like to think of how it'll play live and this is one I really like to perform. It makes people happy. Lyrically, it tells the story of a girl driving in the car, listening to music, and thinking about a boy," she says.

 

Another standout track is "Record on Repeat," which was written with another special guest - Ryan Hedgecock of Lone Justice. "This is the closest to the live show out of the all of the songs. It has lots of energy. I went over to Ryan's house when I was out in L.A. one night. His band, Lone Justice, was instrumental in mixing punk and country, and I am so enamored of them and him. We drank some tequila and ended up writing this song that's just a vignette of a rock and roll; fast girl and guy get together in a burst of flames, personified in the record they can't stop listening to. It was a really fun and natural writing experience," she says.

 

Along with her famous friends, her fans helped Radio Sweetheart along as well. "We did a crowd-funding campaign and within one month, I received more than 150 percent of the money I needed. I couldn't believe it. Donations would come in and there'd be $1,000 from someone I didn't know, and donations from China. Holy cow!" she says.

 

Borges will be touring for most the year with many shows featuring label-mates Girls, Guns, and Glory's Chris Hersch (guitar), Paul Dilley (bass), and Josh Kiggans (drums) as her backing band.

June 14, Bull Run, Shirley, MA

July 3, Natalie's, Worthington, OH

July 4, The Livery 4th of July Show, Benton Harbor, MI

July 11, Black Potatoe Music Festival, Clinton, NJ

July 18, Hungry Tiger, Manchester, CT

 

More dates to be announced...

 

album art
 
   

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