Monday, January 30, 2017

Jeff Siegel & Feya Faku's new album "King of Xhosa" comes out this month

Artist Recording Collective (ARC) is proud to announce the release of "King of Xhosa" by renowned drummer and composer Jeff "Siege" Siegel. On the Jeff Siegel Quartet's third studio recording, the stalwart drummer merges his high energy, straight ahead post-bop with the deeply spiritual stylings of trumpet master Feya Faku to produce a vibrant sonic tapestry of South African infused jazz. "King of Xhosa" brings together Siegel's longstanding quartet comprised of saxophonist Erica Lindsay, pianist Francesca Tanksley, and bassist Rich Syracuse with percussionist Fred Berryhill and trumpeter extraordinaire Feya Faku.

Jeff Siegel and Feya Faku first came together in 2014 in Siegel's home-turf of Woodstock, New York when Faku visited there to perform with Uhadi, his group of select South African musicians. Siegel was immediately drawn to Faku''s sound. "From the first time I heard Feya in Woodstock, I knew that he had the perfect vibe, sound and soul to fit with my own quartet," says Siegel. That summer, Siegel embarked on the trip of a lifetime to Cape Town and Grahamstown, South Africa, where he participated in the International Association of Schools of Jazz, and performed at the Grahamstown Jazz Festival.

It was during this profound trip that the idea of a collaboration with Faku truly took hold. "Because African music is the roots of what we play as Jazz musicians, there was a feeling of being home while I was there," he says, " was a blessing to meet, hear and play with wonderful musicians and experience the soul of Africa firsthand.

The title "King of Xhosa" is an homage to the South African musician as well as his people. "Feya's lineage is of the tribe known as Xhosa - the 2nd largest ethnic group in South Africa after the Zulus.  They are known as "prophets" and have had several kings," explains Siegel, adding that although Feya himself is not a "king" per se, he nonetheless "carries and conducts himself in a most regal manner."

Homage is a recurring theme on "King of Xhosa" with each of the nine tracks having been composed with specific inspirations in mind. On 'Totem,' the album's opening 'call to worship' inspired by Xhosa dancers, Faku's resonate vocals soar. On 'Prayer', composer Tanksley pays tribute to the "power of merciful love", while Faku composed 'Courage' with his teachers in mind. Siegel's poignant 'Ballad of the Innocent' is dedicated to the victims of the Brussells bombing while Tanksley's 'Life on the Rock' is dedicated to each of the musicians on "King of Xhosa".

All in all, "King of Xhosa" is a celebration of the intersection of cultures. "I hope this music in some way reflects the deep respect I have for the great cultures of both Africa and the United States.  While we are profoundly aware of the great pain that resulted in the birth of Jazz music, born from the tragedy of slavery, we are forever blessed with the positive outcome of the joining of these cultures in music.  I pray that this recording shall add some positivity, inspiration and strength to a troubled world in whatever small way it can," says Siegel.

Drummer/Composer Jeff "Siege" Siegel is a veteran of the New York Jazz scene and has worked with a virtual "who's who" of artists. He came onto the New York scene in 1980-83 as a member of the quartet of the legendary multi-instrumentalist Arthur Rhames.  After six years with the group Second Sight, which featured trumpeter Dave Douglas, Siegel became a member of the Sir Roland Hanna Trio from 1994-'99.  From the years 1990 - present he has been co-led several touring ensembles as well as The Jeff "Siege" Siegel Quartet.  Simultaneously, from 2001 - 2015 Siegel was also a member of the Lee Shaw Trio from whom he also produced several cds and a dvd.

Siegel's diverse career has also led him to perform and/or record with legends such as Ron Carter, Kenny Burrell, Jack DeJohnette, Pat Metheny, Benny Golson, Frank Foster, Sheila Jordan, Helen Merrill, Mose Allison, John Medeski, Stefon Harris, Kurt Elling, Ravi Coltrane, Ryan Kisor, Steve Wilson, John Medeski, Dena DeRose, Dave Liebman, Pete & Tony Levin, Steve Turre, and many others. He has worked in the avant-garde world as well with artists such as Wadada Leo Smith, Baikida Carroll and Esa Pietila. He has performed over 30 European tours including four as leader of the Jeff "Siege" Siegel Quartet and several others as co-leader at various festivals, concert venues and clubs. His touring has also led to performances and clinics throughout the United States, South Africa, South America, China and Canada.

As an educator, Siegel is a faculty member at The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, Western Connecticut State University, and The State University of New York at New Paltz .He holds a Masters Degree in Jazz from Queens College where he studied composition with Jimmy Heath.  He has been the recipient of several grants from Meet the Composer and endorses Vic Firth Drum sticks.  Please be on the lookout for two upcoming new cd releases with his quartet including "London Live" (ARC Records) and "King of Xhosa" featuring South African trumpeter Feya Faku.

Feya Faku  is an accomplished Jazz musician and composer. He graduated with a Diploma in Jazz Studies at the University of Natal in 1992 under the tutelage of Professor Darius Brubeck, pianist and son of renowned American pianist, Dave Brubeck.

The trumpet and flugelhorn player has performed with a significant number of South African music legends. Based in South Africa, Faku travels frequently to perform on international stages with global counterparts. One of these long standing collaborations includes a partnership with the Paul van Kemenade Quintet, which now celebrates 20 years. In the past twenty years, Faku has partnered with the quintet on seasonal projects across Europeans stages.

Faku has participated in teaching and fellowship programmes teaching trumpet and ensemble work. In April 2006 he participated in a residency programme in Switzerland teaching and performing with the Swiss-South African Quintet. The University Council of the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University awarded Fezile a Council Prestige Award, one of the highest award awarded by the University Council.

As recently as October 2012, Faku was Artist in Residence at the opening of the International Jazz School of the University of South Africa.  Over the past two years Fezile has recorded several cds as a sideman and toured the U.S. extensively with the South African group known as "Uhadi" as well as with Kesivan Naidoo & The Lights.

O depoimento de Arnaldo DeSouteiro ao portal Coisas da Música - Parte 1

Confira o depoimento de Arnaldo DeSouteiro ao portal Coisas da Música, agora na íntegra, em sete partes. No capítulo 1, o jornalista e produtor fonográfico fala das primeiras influências musicais. Tudo começou em casa, a partir de uma família extremamente musical: os pais Delza Agricola (pianista clássica e regente, primeira Maestrina formada pelo Conversatório Brasileiro de Música) e Walter Souteiro (pianista amador), a tia Elge Agricola (também pianista clássica, formada pela Escola Nacional de Música), a tia-avó Aurette Palermo (que também muito contribuiu para a sua coleção de discos iniciada ainda na infância), e os avós Ernani Agricola (renomado médico que tocava violoncelo, flauta e piano) e Aurea Agricola.

Entrevista realizada por Bernardo Costa em 11/07/2016.
O material foi publicado em duas reportagens no portal Coisas da Música. Veja nos links abaixo:
As memórias de Arnaldo DeSouteiro - Parte I
As memórias de Arnaldo DeSouteiro - Parte II

Imagem e edição: Bernardo Costa
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Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Hiromi Suda releases "Nagi" in March

Singer-songwriter Hiromi Suda will be releasing her third album, "Nagi," on the Blujazz label, on March 7, 2017! She will be appearing in New York City at Subrosa on March 9 to celebrate the release. The radio add date is February 21.

"Nagi" is the latest and most fully realized iteration of Suda's singular hybrid conception, by which she mingles and juxtaposes the musical cultures of Japan and Brazil. The album was first released in Japan this past July on Inpartmaint Inc. to critical acclaim. As of March 7th, "Nagi" will be available worldwide on HDTracks and on iTunes.

"Suda's uniquely clear, unaffected voice glides, honoring the lines and emphases that characterize Brazilian jazz...There are subtle tilts in new kindred directions... as Japanese folk inflections are woven with contemporary swing edges."--Katie Bull, NYC Jazz Record

CD Reissue of the Month - "Lalo Schifrin: Black Widow & Towering Toccata"

CD Reissue of the Month
Lalo Schifrin: "Black Widow & Towering Toccata" (CTI/Robinsongs) 

Rating: ***** (musical performance & sonic quality)

Produced by Creed Taylor
Engineered by Rudy Van Gelder & Joe Jorgensen
Arranged & Conducted by Lalo Schifrin

These albums feature some of the greatest jazz musicians of the period including Eric Gale, John Tropea, Steve Gadd, Hubert Laws, Don Alias, Sue Evans, Anthony Jackson & Joe Farrell to name but a few. Lalo Schifrin puts a jazz-funk vibe to some classic movie themes including Steven Spielberg's blockbuster "Jaws" which was released as a single and charted at 14 in the UK Singles chart, and became a worldwide Disco smash. Schifrin's CTI debut "Black Widow" proved a hit as it landed at no. 22 in the US list of Jazz bestsellers, and it also appeared on the R&B chart. There are stunning arrangements of "old" material: Ary Barroso's "Bahia" (Na Baixa do Sapateiro), Les Baxter's "Quiet Village", the lovely "Flamingo," and the standard "Moonglow" (Theme from "Picnic.") It's a joy to listen guitarists Eric Gale and John Tropea playing together in all tracks!

Buoyed by good sales and the encouraging public reception Schifrin returned to the studio to cut his second CTI album "Towering Toccata," featuring Jeremy Steig, Urbie Green, John Blair, Clark Spangler, Don Armando, Steve Gadd, Will Lee, John Tropea, Ralph MacDonald, Ronnie Cuber etc. Again there was plenty of effervescent disco-funk grooves (even on the title track, an adaptation of the famous "Toccata & Fugue in D Minor" by J.S. Bach!) plus big movie themes including "King Kong." But also some ballads like "Eagles In Love" and "France's Theme." My personal favorite track is "Midnight Woman," a song I've included in my compilation "CTI Acid Jazz Grooves" back in 1997, featuring Lalo's terrific solo on Fender Rhodes.

This reissue features liner notes by Charles Waring, contributor to MOJO magazine & Record Collector.
It's on sale at Dusty Groove and that's what they say:

A pair of CTI 70s classics from Lalo Schifrin – back to back on a single CD! First up is Black Widow – funky 70s work from Lalo – with a bit of a disco twist, and plenty of the electric jazz funk elements that were showing up in his soundtracks at the time! Lalo's on keyboards, playing a cool host of electric ones that give the record a nice spacey sound over the top of the funky arrangements. 

There's plenty of nice guitar work – either by Eric Gale or John Tropea – which gives the cuts some nice choppy funky bits that drive them a bit harder than you might expect. Includes an amazing funk remake of "Quiet Village", plus "Dragonfly", "Black Widow", "Baia", "Turning Point", and a version of the "Jaws" theme! 

Towering Toccatta is electric 70s work from Lalo Schifrin – with a tight uptempo funky sound that's similar to his strong "cop show" soundtrack themes of the time! This album's a pretty great testament to Lalo's durability as one of the great composer arrangers – sublime stuff from the late 70s, and a record that really works nicely alongside Schifrin's music for films. 

Lalo's got a great crew for the set, too – including Joe Farrell and Jeremy Steig on flute, Eric Gale on guitar, Anthony Jackson on bass, Steve Gadd and Andrew Smith on drums, accompaniment on keys by Chuck Spangler and a host of others! Titles include "Eagles In Love", "Macumba", "Theme From Most Wanted", "Theme From King Kong", and "Roller Coaster".

Beyond CD of the Month - "Hugo Fattoruso & Tomohiro Yahiro: Dos Orientales / Tercer Viaje"

Beyond CD of the Month
Dos Orientales (Hugo Fattoruso & Tomohiro Yahiro): "Tercer Viaje" (Beans Records BNSCD-7729)

Rating: **** (musical performance & sonic quality)

Produced by Hugo Fattoruso & Tomohiro Yahiro
Recorded by Tsukasa Okamoto & Shinya Matsushita @ Dedé Studio (Tokyo, Japan)
Mixed by Gustavo De León & Hugo Fattoruso @ Sondor (Montevideo, Uruguay)
Mastered by Gustavo De León
Album Design: Taiga Kuhara
Licensed by KaiYa (Tokyo, Japan) and Released by Beans Records

Featuring: Hugo Fattoruso (piano, keyboards, vocals), Tomohiro Yahiro (percussion)
Special Guests: Francisco Fattoruso (bass on "Barrio Latino"), Christian Fattoruso (electric guitar on "Barrio Latino"), Albana Barrocas, Diego Paredes, Noè Núñez & Fernando Núñez (percussion)

Pop CD of the Month - "Vitoria Maldonado: Vitoria"

Pop CD of the Month
Vitoria Maldonado: "Vitoria" (VMG 0001)

Composed, Arranged & Produced by Vitoria Maldonado
Musical Director: Ney Marques
Cover Photo: Danilo Borges
Graphic Design: Magno Ribeiro
Art Coordinator: Victor Rebouças

Featuring: Vitoria Maldonado (vocals, piano), Ney Marques & Elias Almeida (guitars), Zé Antonio (keyboards), Ary Nascimento (bass), Dadi (drums), Proveta (sax), Oswaldinho do Acordeon (accordion)