Archive for the ‘Jazz’ Category

snakebite

Earlier this year we brought you an interview with the amazingly talented Brev Sullivan (Rock of Ages). In case you missed it, make sure to check it out here. Interview with Brev Sullivan.  Brev has been quite busy, with the release of his contemporary jazz guitar CD, Brand New Day (available on iTunes here) and performing with his bands. His band, Snakebite are about to set sail next month for the 4th KISS KRUISE which will sail to the Great Stirrup Cay on October 31st to November 4, 2014.   The headliners of the cruise feature Kiss, Cheap Trick, Robin Zander’s, and Pat Travers. Snakebite will be performing on the Soundcheck Stage and will deliver some old school Original Heavy Vinyl Rock definitely proving that Rock n Roll is alive and thriving!

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Snakebite are also set to release their new CD, Feel the Bite in early October. Just in time for you to be singing along with them on the Kiss Kruise! Make sure to visit their social media sites and stay up to date on their latest news.  Make sure to also pick up Brev’s CD, Brand New Day on Itunes or CDBaby.

Brev Sullivan at NAMM 2014

Brev Sullivan at NAMM 2014

 

Snakebite features:

  • Tim Brown (McBrain Damage): lead vox
  • Brev Sullivan (Rock of Ages): guitars, vox
  • Patrick Johansson (Yngwie/WASP/Lynch Mob): drums
  • Crystalline Entity (Brubaker Artist): bass, background vox

Get ready for their new CD Feel the Bite and if you are in the Ft. Lauderdale area, don’t miss their show this Saturday on September 27th at Cheers, Food and Spirits. Visit their Facebook page for more details: https://www.facebook.com/Snakebiterockband.

~ Marisol

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Photo Credit: Matt Zack Photography & Design

Photo Credit: Matt Zack Photography & Design

Sometimes you have one of those days, weeks or even months where you feel a bit overwhelmed and that was me last week! Music has always been my medicine, my drug, my answer to my questions. This past weekend, the music that helped me get out of my “funk” was the new catchy tunes by Allen Cruz & The Galaxy. Allen Cruz & The Galaxy is Allen Cruz on Vocals & Guitar, Josh Huddleston on Guitar & Vocals, Paul Merendino on Drums & Vocals, Brian Crace on Bass & Vocals. Together they have created a unique style of music which can be referred to as Jazzy Pop Rock.

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One thing is for sure, when I first put on their new EP I instantly smiled and knew that their music was my mood elevator. They could market their music as the new anti-depressant! No Pills needed! Just plug in and listen and let their songs take you on a musical journey to feed your soul with upbeat catchy tunes. They remind me of a mix of early Barenaked Ladies and Bruno Mars.

Allen Cruz & The Galaxy are set to release their new EP, Talk About the Moon and is going to be a must have for you. The first track Hugs N Kisses had such a nostalgic 50’s style intro that really captured their energy and resonates an upbeat jazz style. The  next track Mirrors is probably one of my favorite songs. The vocals are mysterious yet commanding and has some really nice jazzy soulful drums and a sweet guitar solo creating a Latin sensual vibe.

You will then enjoy the fun and flirty song of Strawberry Pie which is a playful tune. Cancer has soaring vocals reminiscent of Bruno Mars style. It is a very powerful song that creates such an impact and is another one of my strong favorites. I love how this band brings a variety of influences into their music without imitating. They truly have created their own unique style. Chewing Words has the perfect intro to pick yourself up. It is the perfect fun inspiring song for your new Go To song. I love the emotionally driven lyrics that are present in every track. Little Red is a romantic love song done the Allen Cruz & The Galaxy way. It paints such a beautiful picture and I love when a songwriter can create such passion through their words and create such a connection with the listener.

The EP comes out on July 5th and I hope you get a chance to pick it up. There will be a CD Release Show in Akron, Ohio at MUSICA. You can get more details by visiting their Facebook page or Website.  Make sure to also visit their social media sites so you can stay up to date on their latest news. We will see if we can bring you an interview as well.

~ Marisol

Information & Links:

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FORREST DAY

Not many bands today can boast of an audience that has interests ranging from ska, funk, jazz, punk, hip hop, rap and so much more. One band that is certain to draw an eclectic crowd who are pure music lovers of all styles of genres is Forrest Day. Forrest Day is our Bay Area treasure of a band but their fanbase has rapidly grown and they have fans from all over the country and even internationally.  One thing is for sure, when you see them perform live, you are instantly hooked. When you listen to their album or hear their songs, you love them but when you see them live, the love affair intensifies, the heat is raised and you are just head over heels in lusty love with their sound. It is truly indescribable.

Forrest Day is going to be heading down to perform at The Viper Room in Hollywood, May 15th at 8 pm. Do whatever you can to get yourself there, because it will definitely be a night to remember. We had the chance to chat with lead singer and the band’s namesake Forrest and are pleased to bring you that interview here:

 

FORREST DAY recently signed with Breaking Bands LLC, the new management firm directed and founded by the powerhouse team of Testament vocalist and co-manager Chuck Billy, Adrenaline PR CEO Maria Ferrero, and former MegaForce Records and Crazed Management owners Jon and Marsha Zazula. Chuck Billy states, The first time I saw FORREST DAY play live, they were just such a fresh sound to my ears and I thought the frontman Forrest was such a great vocalist with an original style. Coincidentally, I ran into them at Soundwave Studio where Testament rehearses (they happen to rehearse there, too), and it turned out that they were looking for management. The rest is history.”  

Maria Ferrero adds, “Working with FORREST DAY is very rewarding for me because FORREST DAY’s music is the epitome of outside the box: unique and inspiring.”  “We love working with FORREST DAY because we’re gluttons for punishment and we’re absolutely in love with Forrest’s mind,” adds Jonny and Marsha Zazula.

Make sure to visit their social media sites so you can stay up to date on their latest news. Also head over to iTunes and be sure to pick up their latest release, The Second.  Check out their upcoming show dates on their website and see if they are coming to a venue near you.

~ Marisol

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NAMM 2014 was once again filled with so many great displays, new gear, artists performing. We looked forward to seeing Brev Sullivan once again and he was awesomely shredding away! We will have to try and get some videos up so you can check him out.

Brev not only is an amazingly talented musician, busy performing with his many bands; Lazy Bonez, FOF, an Snakebite to name a few, but he also shares his passion for music by teaching as well.

This week he had the opportunity to catch up with Brev and are pleased to bring you that interview here:

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Music Junkie Press: Thank you Brev for taking the time out to talk with us here at Music Junkie Press! It was great seeing you once again at NAMM. This year was a great one. How was your NAMM trip?

Brev: It is always an adventure and it gets better every year. I love it!

Music Junkie Press: You have been quite a busy man, what are you currently working on?

Brev: I just finished up a contemporary Jazz CD entitled Brand New Day. It has 8 tracks on it, a variety of contemporary sounding or smooth jazz original compositions. 4 out of the 8 feature my father (renowned jazz musician, Ira Sullivan) playing one of his many horns and he is a multi-instrumentalist so that could be any tune could be sax or flute or both.

Music Junkie Press: That is great! You told me before about how your father was instrumental in getting you into music. How was it working with your father?

Brev: Yes, well, my father is a mentor and a teacher to all, so it is no different him working with his son, than working with any of the many young people he has worked with throughout his careers, starting with Jaco Pastorius back in the ‘70s to now. So he won’t let me slip up either, just because I’m his kid.

Music Junkie Press: How old were you when you first picked up and played the guitar?

Brev: I actually started late. I didn’t really get serious until I was about seventeen, but my earliest memory was playing.. plinking around on the classical around 15.

Music Junkie Press: Do you remember what was the first song you learned to play in it’s entirety?

Brev: Yes, it was “GreenSleeves”. Well, you hear it around the holidays but it is considered a secular tune even though they play it at the holidays. I got to play that quite often.

Music Junkie Press: Do you remember what was your first guitar?

Brev: Yes, I do. That was the classic story, I was kid and I worked all summer cutting grass and trimming trees and I got a Palmer.

Music Junkie Press: Do you still have it? I know many like to keep their first guitar.

Brev: Not that one. Oh No, I don’t remember what happened to that.

Music Junkie Press:  How about now, what is your current rig rundown?

Brev: I have two separate rigs that I am trying to combine. I have been currently using a combination of Bogner amps, DV Mark Amps which is still relatively new to the scene and they are wonderful amps. And then, I have been making use of some of the modern digital technology, I have been using the Axe FXs.

Music Junkie PressCheck out Brev and his band FOF as they performed at Sam Ash Music and utilizing the Axe FX II:

Music Junkie Press: In addition to being so active in performing, recording you also teach music. With all the different genres, sub genres, and that seems to be changing and ‘80s style Rock n Roll is definitely making a big comeback! Do you see a rise in young students who want to learn and play more original style rock n roll?

Brev: That is an interesting question. I see a rise in certain musical groups and artists out there that want to play, that are making headlines or headway in different style but, I see with most of my students that I encounter, I see them revisiting the old grassroots techniques of Jimmy Page and Hendrix. They find it new today as I did when I was growing up and as the people before me did. So, I would say in seeking originality, they would have to seek the grass roots first.

Music Junkie Press: Right now, it is so funny to see the young teens out there and you introduce them to other styles of original music, some of them just grasp on to it and they start researching all types of music on their own. Then they can incorporate it into their own style.

If you could go back and talk to your 14 year old self, what advice would you give to yourself?

Brev:  That is a good question. At the time I was growing up, all these great bands that as you just mentioned are coming back and are still touring and still surviving, market themselves as a gang or as four great friends and that nothing can go wrong. I think that is a great model because they wouldn’t be able to sell what they are selling, which is great music and cool posters, cool lifestyle, however, it can limit your ability to survive in the real world which is, what I would tell myself, ‘These are great bands but maybe you should learn a few more tunes like the blues, some adventurous tunes, I know as silly as it sounds some Frank Sinatra, because these are the decades of music that people for the last century have listened to time and time again.” That music will allow any musician who can play to work constantly.

Music Junkie Press: Rock Of Ages was an iconic film that we loved. We can’t get enough of the ‘80s! Did you get to keep some of those crazy ’80 outfits from it?

Brev: Well, some of that stuff was my own, so Yes.

Music Junkie Press: What song from the ‘80s era would you say is your theme song or anthem song?

Brev: Well, interesting enough Mari, the music from Rock of Ages, I was aware of it and I loved it but I was more of a progressive guy. I was into Rush and I was into Van Halen, so Panama or Jump or something like that was more my theme song.

Music Junkie Press: That is great. Now do you have any shows coming up with Featured on Fridays or SnakeBite?

Brev: Yes, I do. In fact I have an interesting day tomorrow. I am playing with LazyBonez at Pirate Fest on the Treasure Coast in Florida and then I have a gig in the evening with Snakebite at the Coconut Creek Casino so geographically, I will need a plane to get to both gigs but it will be great.

Music Junkie Press: That is a busy one for you, a weekend of music!

Brev: Yes, and that is how I like it. FOF, Features on FridayBand will be throwing my CD release party in March, I haven’t set the date yet.

Music Junkie Press: So your CD will be released in March?

Brev: The CD is actually available now on Itunes, CDBaby under Brev Sullivan “Brand New Day”.

BrevSullivan-BrandNewDay

Music Junkie Press: We will definitely share those links on our site. Lastly, is there anything else you would like to share with our audience?

Brev: What I would like to share is, keep in mind that music played on a guitar, or a piano, or a trumpet, or any type of instrument is an age old tool that has absolutely no microchips, it doesn’t have the screen on it, it doesn’t have any texting on it, it is an age old creation of wire and wood and to this day, it is still the center of our universe as a musician or a fan and that is very powerful.

Music Junkie Press: That is so beautifully said. Music truly can heal them, help them,  be there for them through the hardest times as well as be there for all the range of your emotions. I know for myself, it has been all those things. I am glad to see the younger generation finally appreciate that and get to the point where they know the music is there for them and it takes you on the journey of your life.

Brev: Yes, and I get that vibe when I look at MusicJunkiePress.com. It sounds like it is run and orchestrated by very excited people and seems very hip and up to date and very cool. Thank you for having me be a part of it.

Music Junkie Press: Thank you so much Brev. We are so excited to feature you and we will be sharing all your social media links and also where to pick up your new CD. Thank you so much for your time and have a wonderful weekend.

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We are excited to hear about the new CD, Brand New Day. One thing is for sure, listening to Jazz makes me feel so alive and that is exactly what you will feel listening to Brand New Day. It takes you on a musical journey filled with vibrant melodies, lively beats, and guitar tracks that actually sing to you. It is amazing and just after my first listen today, I wouldn’t even be able to tell you my favorites since they all captivate me.  Blue City is the first song and sets the perfect tone for the whole album. Get ready to feel invigorated and Coming Home does just that for me. It literally took me back to the late 1970s as I would watch my older sisters sing and dance around in the garage, a time of simple fun and innocence. It has such a fantastic 70’s vibe meshed with amazing guitar and instrumental work. All the songs are magical and captivating and literally tell a tale with each song as the instruments speak to you in such a personal way. I have to thank you Brev, for reminding me of my long lost love of Jazz and congratulations on your excellent album.

I hope you have the chance to pick up Brev‘s new album and also visit  his social media sites so you can stay up to date on all his latest news. If you are in Florida, see if you can catch one of his shows tomorrow! I will leave you with some videos of Brev performing.

~ Marisol

Information & Links:

MMflatagainst wall55

This Saturday, August 17th, if you are lucky enough to live in New York and can get to the East River Park for Summerstage 2013 you will be treated to passionate and wonderful multi-media concert and dance piece inspired by the songs of Marla Mase.  Marla Mase’s 2013 album “SPEAK” feeds your soul and your senses as you are treated to live music, spoken word, dance and visual imagery. This event takes place at The East River Park on August 17th and is FREE to the public!  You can get more information here. 

Marla’s music and writings are so in depth and challenge all of us to be more peaceful and to bare our souls as we learn to love ourselves and others. Marla broke into music in her 40’s after dealing with several challenges and obstacles. As Marla describes, it was a “Break up. Break down. Break through.”  In addition, she was awarded the “Messenger of Peace” award from Friends of the UN.  Her punk/rock n roll, soul inspired music and style remind me of a cross between Patti Smith and Chrissy Hynde with some Joan Baez and Joni Mitchell fused in there.  I truly love her music and when I listen, I can’t help but get inspired, empowered and just feel harmony in my life. I hope you get a chance to listen to her. Take a listen and watch her video here for “Piece of Peace

 

We had a chance to talk with Marla and are pleased to share our interview with you here:

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Music Junkie Press: Marla, Thank you for taking the time to talk with us here at Music Junkie Press. We are excited to tell everyone about your Summerstage Appearance in August. Can you tell us more about it?

Marla: Sure, SPEAK, is a multi-media performance concert based on the music of my album SPEAK DELUXE. It explores the themes of confinement, freedom, oppression, body image, sexuality through the movements, voices, bodies of women. It features 7 dancers, 4 actresses, video projections, and of course the Tomás Doncker Band. It is a big show and I’m very grateful to have been given the opportunity to develop this show for Summerstage. After that I have plans to bring it over to Europe. I already have choreographers over in Holland and Germany ready to take it on and add their voice to the themes being explored in the songs. My goal for this show is to have it travel — a global concert/theatrical quilt of sorts, where female artists (painters, sculptors, filmmakers, dancers, actresses, choreographers) from all over the world will get a chance to SPEAK out on these themes. That way it becomes much bigger than me and is truly about all of us.

Music Junkie Press: You have challenged us to all be caring and peaceful as well as inspire us. Who would you say is your biggest inspiration in your life?

Marla: My parents. My parents have been nothing but unconditional in their support for me and they gave me the greatest gift of all – LOVE. Starting out with a base –knowing that I am loved and cared for has given me the courage to live my life, to believe in myself, and to believe that I am worth something. Unfortunately, so many people are not given this base. More specifically, my father’s optimism, teaching me to believe that ‘every decision is the right decision’ , that ‘I’ve gone about as far as I can go’ (when it came to studying or knowing that it was time to leave something behind and start anew, to let go and know I’ve done everything I could about a situation), his love of people and sincere interest in them, their lives, their thoughts — plus he is brilliant. My mom, on the other hand, taught me just by who she is, that to be different, unique, quirky is a gift and a blessing. She tries so hard to be ‘normal’, whatever that is and she is not. She is this beautiful woman who defies explanations and convention without even knowing she does. She is also very talented – a songwriter, a singer, a humorist — when I was little my favorite times was when she pulled out the guitar and sang to me. Loved that.

Music Junkie Press: Those are some beautiful memories! How old were you when you started performing? Can you remember what was your first performance?

Marla: Yes, I sang ‘Where is Love?” from the musical Oliver at a talent show at a beach club I belonged to when I was 4. I lost. I didn’t start seriously performing until I was in my 30’s. I was always very shy and stayed away from it (other than taking up the dance floor at discos in Brooklyn in my teens) – when I was 26 I took my first acting class. And fell in love with it. Then when I was 33 I took a “Writing the One Woman Show” class and let’s just say, the rest is history. People have always assumed I’ve been performing forever after they have seen me perform. HAH!

Music Junkie Press: You truly are a natural! Your music has such a blend of everything, I can tell you are a true lover of all music. What artist would you say was the most influential for you?

Marla: Kafka, Theodore Dreiser, Milan Kundera, Isabel Allende, Martin McDonagh (the Pillowman is one of the most beautifully written plays I’ve ever heard) to name a few. I know it’s odd to name literary influences but the truth is that’s where I get my musicality from — all those words I’ve read over the years, a symphony — a truly great writer knows it’s about the rhythm of the words, even more than the content.

Music Junkie Press: That is so true. With “Speak Deluxe” you truly open yourself to us and it is so emotionally driven and passionate! Will you be doing more touring for it?

Marla:  Absolutely. I’ll be performing at the MEOW Conference in Austin TX in October, and have been in the preliminary stages of touring (the duo version of it- me and Tomás Doncker) in Holland, Germany, Poland, Mexico and Spain. Plus as I mentioned before, turning the SPEAK show, into a global project. I’ll also be performing at The Blue Note in NYC for the launch of Tomás Doncker’s True Groove Label (I am their flagship artist-along with Tomás Doncker Band, Kevin Jenkins and Lael Summer.)

Marla Mase-SPEAK CD cover

Music Junkie Press:  That is exciiting and so glad you are taking “SPEAK” globally! If you could share three things about you Marla that we might not have known, what would they be?

Marla: I am a rule follower and hate confrontation.Shopping terrifies me.Love corny musicals — one of the few things that makes me cry.

Music Junkie Press: Lastly, is there anything else you would like to share with our audience?

Marla: Yes, I’ll be back in the studio by the end of the month recording my next record. This is the first I’ve spoken about it publicly so I guess it’s official.

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I am excited about  Marla’s next record! I hope you all get a chance to listen to her and also take the time to be the change that you want to see in the world.  Together we all can be the Piece to Peace.

~ Enjoy, Marisol

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