STRUT, the funky single from Philip Lassiter's DreamZzz, is an anthem for misfits. The newly released video showcases some bona fide individuals who aren't afraid to get up and dance to the beat of their own drums. Anytime, anywhere, "no matter what, you gotta STRUT!"
A beautiful bird, bangles jingling, falls down a well. It’s her friends who help her out. That’s the tale behind the Greek folk song “Yerakina,” and the spirit that animates New York’s Banda Magda.
This spirit thrums on the big, vivid band’s latest album. The perfect complement to 2013’s Amour, t’es là? (named one of the year’s best world music albums by NPR), Yerakina vibrates with the same bright, bold strokes. Now, instead of charismatic bandleader/composer Magda Giannikou’s wild and wildly romantic originals, the Banda had turned to traditional and classic tunes. They are tales of love and devotion as strong as the bonds that bind the band’s diverse players.
“I wanted this album to be about the band,” Giannikou reflects. “I wanted my bandmates and collaborators have more freedom and initiative in the creative process. The album sprang from our friendship and love, and you can really feel that in the songs.”
The camaraderie echoes in the music, as diverse rhythms and melodies from different corners of the globe cross-pollinate, giving chansons Afro-Peruvian sway or Greek folk tunes with a mad dash of Northeastern Brazilian beats. Traditional Greek rockers (“Trata,” “Yerakina”), gentle but driving ballads (“El Pescador,” “Petite Fleur”), samba and baião numbers incorporate everything from kitchen ware to hammered dulcimer, from full and rich horn arrangements to shimmering vibraphone, in wonderfully seamless, addictive songs.
“In many ways, Yerakina has nothing to do with music,” smiles Giannikou. “It's about one hand holding the other, climbing up that deep, dark well, together, towards the sunlight.”
From the DVD Yerakina released September 23rd, 2014 on GroundUP Music
Written by Luiz Gonzaga & Zé Dantas
Produced by Magda Giannikou, Michael League & Fab Dupont
Magda Giannikou: voice & accordion
Ignacio Hernandez: nylon-string guitar
Mika Mimura: vibraphone
Jordan Perlson: drum set
Marcelo Woloski: percussion
Keita Ogawa: percussion
James Shipp: percussion
Haggai Cohen-Milo: upright bass
Michael League: baritone guitar
Mike Maher: flugelhorn
Matt Holman: flugelhorn
Matt McLaughlin: french horn
Bill Laurance: piano
primi: Maria Im, Emily Ondracek
secondi: Eylem Basaldi, Allyson Clark
viole: Lev Ljova Zhurbin, Dana Lyn
celli: Maria Jeffers, Colin Stokes
Background Vocals: Marcelo Woloski, Michael League, Bob Lanzetti, Justin Stanton
Special Guests: Gregorio Uribe, Juan Andrés Ospina, Nicolas Ospina on vocals
String and Horn arrangements by Magda Giannikou
Our rhythm section was recorded by Fab Dupont & Mike La Tona at Kaleidoscope Sound, NJ with Ian Cassel assisting.
Strings were recorded by Fab Dupont at Flux Studios, NYC.
Background vocals were recorded by Ira Senak at Flux Studios NYC.
Lead vocals were recorded by Mike La Tona at Flux Studios.
Mika's vibraphone and the alegre were recorded at Atlantic Sound Studios in Brooklyn, NY by Diko Shoturma, with Sean Van Doornum assisting.
Piano on "El Pescador" was tracked by Daniel Sanint at Flux Studios NYC.
All the rest were recorded at Flux with Mike La Tona.
All the music was edited by Mike La Tona.
Flux Studios assistant engineers: Asher Zeitschik, Jin Hwang, Ira Senak, Dan Cherouny
Mixed by Fab Dupont at Flux Studios NYC.
Mastered by Pablo Lopez Ruiz & Diego Calviño at 3:3:2 Studio.
Photography by Daniel Hilsinger
Artwork by Magda Giannikou & Christos Mastorakis
All the recording process was filmed, directed and edited by Andy LaViolette.
Additional filming by Beto Durán for “El Pescador”.
Executive Producers: Randraiz and Yolanda Wharton, Chico.
Made up of Lost Tribe founder Adam Rogers on guitar (Michael Brecker, Chris Potter, Norah Jones, Joe Jackson, Cassandra Wilson, Paul Simon) Rudder founder Henry Hey on keyboards (Jeff “Tain” Watts, Joe Locke, Chris Botti, Bill Bruford, Seamus Blake, David Bowie, Empire of the Sun), Snarky Puppy founder and Grammy Award-winner Michael League on bass (Kirk Franklin, Wayne Krantz/Ari Hoenig Quartet, Lalah Hathaway), and Jason “JT” Thomas on drums (Roy Hargrove’s RH Factor, Marcus Miller, D’Angelo), Forq is an all-star ensemble of sorts - but with the spirit and cohesiveness of a garage band.The debut album, Forq, will be released on GroundUP Music. Pre-order your digital album or DVD/album now!Catch the group on tour starting in September and pick up your own copy of Forq right away. Dates and venues announced in the tour promo video.
To All Soulful Peeps Around The Globe...Here's the info for Philip Lassiter's new album release!Please click the banner and comment/leave a review on iTunes. It's very important! Also, if you like what you hear, please forward this to your friends with a personal note telling them about the project. Thanks for your support!
Introducing "Funkenstein," a kit used by the masterful drummer on Bill Laurance's album, Flint.
Today brings the release of Bill Laurance's debut album, Flint.
THE LONG AWAITED RELEASE OF DreamZzz, THE ARTISTIC STATEMENT AND SOPHOMORE STUDIO RECORD OF PHILIP LASSITER (CURRENTLY ON TOUR WITH PRINCE) IS ANNOUNCED BY GROUNDUP MUSIC TO DROP JUNE 10TH.
When you tour the world with Prince, yes THAT Prince, the eyes and ears of said world are upon you. However, this is nothing new for Philip Lassiter, who has been playing on, arranging, and producing records for some of the entertainment industry's biggest artists for over a decade (Prince, Kelly Rowland, Fantasia, Anthony Hamilton, Kirk Franklin, and many more). This means that an opportunity to hear his own, unﬁltered musical opinions, is a highly anticipated event. Fans and curious by-standers can seize this opportunity on iTunes/PhilipLassiter and Bandcamp/PhilipLassiter, June 10th, 2014. This is the ﬁrst studio record to be released by Lassiter since signing with GroundUP Music (an imprint of RopeADope Records).
When Philip Lassiter signed to GroundUP in early 2014, plans immediately were drafted to release the material Lassiter had been working on for the last 6 years. The record is a testament to his incredible talent and the talent surrounding him, which includes Mike Stern, Tommy Sims, Michael League (Snarky Puppy), Jeff Cofﬁn, Bernard Wright, and Mark & Joey Kibble, to name a few. The masterful ear of Grammy winning mixing and recording engineer James Waddell has beautifully extracted and highlighted each of these mega-talents' contributions to the project with ﬁnishing touches to the record that will undoubtedly lead to another nomination for the highly sought after mixer/engineer. It is becoming clear that this record will serve as an inﬂuence for jazz and soul musicians for many years to come.
When DreamZzz is released digitally on June 10th, 2014, it will be held enclosed in a replications of a beautiful hand-painted masterpiece by Jessica Volpe, which will be revealed as the cover on the day of the release. The artistry of the Volpe album cover is the only ﬁtting wardrobe for what portends to be an industry bell-weather for Contemporary Jazz. DreamZzz is the follow-up to Lassiter's successful freshman record, PHILTHY. For more info on Philip Lassiter, including his discography, video tour footage, complete biography and more, please visit philiplassiter.com.