Sunday, March 1, 2015

Jasmine Jordan

Jasmine Jordan’s Time Travel  is a thing of beauty,  past,  present and future.  Release: Jasmine Jordan does something with R&B and pop that is quite unusual. There is the familiar tempo and feel of  R&B, but there is also a longing, a maturity, a personal connection and a heart to heart conversation that is rare to find and hard to accomplish. Jordan accomplishes it with what appears to be little effort. When you listen to her EP, Time Travel, you feel you know her with the kind of knowledge that you get from listening to a person talk while you read their face and body language.
Time Travel is her first EP, but is moves with the sophistication of a much more experienced artist. She knows exactly how to frame her songwriting and her smooth, precise voice so that, even coming through speakers or earbuds, she creates a relationship with her listeners.The result is a thing of beauty that travels through past, present and future.

Time Travel is a spare four songs, all about relationships in various states – some long ended in the past, some tentatively searching for a future, and some trying to cope with the here and now.  


In the title song “Time Travel”, she asks  wistfully, Lets go back in time/When you and I, were uncomplicated. We have all had that moment, wishing we could  go back in time to a place where life was uncomplicated and Jordan captures that universal longing. But she is a pragmatist – she bring us back to reality in the chorus: “time travel ain’t possible”. And then she unreels the rest of the story with a beautiful alliterative line, “before I felt what I felt and we did what we did that night”,  creating an impression of a passionate, loving  union but then quickly erasing it in the second verse with the words, “before you took advantage of me”. As the slow, soft drum and light-touch keyboard notes paint a pastel backdrop for her voice, she introduces a new element, the artist Blanchard De Wave, rapping gently, a perfect male counterpoint to her confident, but longing melody.
In the song “Time Travel”, she uses gentle R&B with a tinge of romantic pop to tell us the past is past,  she is wiser now, too strong to be taken advantage of.  But she shifts the mood from confidence to doubt and the time from the past to the present in “Possibilities”. With a strong bassline, swirling keyboards and multilayered chorus she asks if she should go ahead, full of fear and excitement and start a new relationship. “I’m afraid to love again/Cause of what I’ve been through/But your patience and your perfect touch/Got me focused on you”.  She nails it with an addictive hook, “And the Possibilities/Got you’re here with me” . I could  listen to “Possibilities” all day long. ifs/And will this lead to tears” But, despite the very human inner conflict, she is ready to go, to feel what she felt, to do what she did, but this time in control; she is  doing the asking.


“Closer”  is music in  its own class. Framed with  magical keyboard rifts, synths and gauzy guitar strums, but energized with very sophisticated baseline beats, Jordan uses her flexible voice to carry us over the line from R&B into romantic pop. The music matches the story, “Baby come closer/there’s no need to fear/Let’s just live and we’ll see.” But, as she asks her partner to put away the fear, she reveals that she cannot do the same: “So scared of the what. But no matter who does the asking, the final song, “Best  I can”, warns us that the future of even the closest relationships is fraught. ”Best I Can” doesn’t cross the line from R&B into romantic pop, it erases it. With a sharp snare drum and complex tom patterns driving the chorus, “I’ve been loving you/The best I can”,  Jordan tells her here and now partner that she can’t do any more, she is doing everything she knows how to be the perfect lover.  Her lament is carried up with swirling keys that add urgency, building her case almost to the level of anger, but not quite. You woke me up and you show me how to give/Selflessly/I gave all my love/But now that I’m giving my best it’s not enough” And once again, Blanchard De Wave answers her, this time with a firm, conversational rap, himself lamenting how they lost touch. The conversation between De Wave and Jordan fills out the lyrical story and widens the musical frame, making a powerful song even more interesting. Producer Andre de Santana navigates Jordan and De Wave smoothly through a shimmering wonderland of rifts, notes, echoes and overdubs.
Jordan relocated from her native Washington State to California for college and then to LA for the energy and creativity to follow her dream. It obviously was a great move. Time Travel is a thing of beauty for the present and a signal that Jasmine Jordan has a great future in front of her.

Time Travel is out now and available on itunes

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LA. Correspondent
Patrick O'Heffernan




Friday, February 27, 2015

J.W. Cudd


Release: “Open Your Heart” was just launched by 26 year-old Pop/Country Artist J.W. Cudd. Cudd wrote the song “Open Your Heart” in honor of his good friend Michelle Leidke, who came upon the ending of her life due to complications in receiving a new pacemaker for her heart condition. The song is currently available on iTunes and supporters can also watch and share the “Open Your Heart” music video, featuring submitted photos from celebrities and fans! 100% of net profits from the campaign will go to the American Heart Association to promote education, research and public awareness!

Celebrities who have already supported the cause include:Taber (Power Rangers Dino Charge), Linc Hand (42, ABC’s Revenge, NCIS), Lindsay Bushman (CSI, The Young and the Restless), Mark Daugherty (The Amazing Spider-man, Awkward), Grace Victoria Cox (Under the Dome), Josh Sussman (Glee, Fish Hooks, The Winklers), Bella Thorne (The Duff), Winters (FX’s ‘Tyrant’), Beau Wrick (ABC’s The Middle),Kato Kaelin, Maria Elene Infantino (JOB’s Daughter), Aaron Kelim (Gin Blossoms, One Lone Car), and Asjha Cooper (Secret Diary of an American Cheerleader).

The “Open Your Heart” campaign  is asking young adults across the nation to share their own “I opened my heart” photo  on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and call out others to do the same—all to build awareness for ‘healthy hearts’ and raise money for the American Heart Association.

To participate, share your own photo calling out others to #openyourheart and include a link where supporters can purchase J.W. Cudd’s song, “Open Your Heart"
Suggestions:
I’m calling out ______________ to #openyourheart and buy “Open Your Heart by J.W. Cudd on iTunes. 100% of net profits go to @american_heart to promote education, research and public awareness. Don’t let the chain of love stop and repost with a pic of you!
·      I’m calling out _____________to #openyourheart! Support @american_heart by buying J.W. Cudd’s song “Open Your Heart” on iTunes! Share the love by reposting your own pic and calling out your friends and family! #ahavideo

                                                    


"Open Your Heart" is available on iTunes

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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Kristin Hoffman


Release: Ethereal composer/producer Kristin Hoffmann announces the release of the title track, “Amazing Space,” from her forthcoming soundtrack album, due out April 7th, 2015. Having shared stages with musical luminaries including The Wallflowers, Feist, and Brandi Carlile and with features in tastemaker outlets such as Yoga Teacher Magazine, Impose Magazine, and Common Ground, Hoffmann has built a reputation for her “elegant, baroque-tinged melodies, precisely nuanced piano, hypnotic rhythms and out-of-this-world gorgeous, dynamic vocals.” (Lucid Culture) She is also the singer for BELLA GAIA, an internationally-touring audiovisual experience created in conjunction with NASA.


In 2009, when filmmaker Ralph Stevens met Hoffmann and described his vision for a meditational movie combining music and images of space, Amazing Space was born. Inspired by a once-in-a-lifetime view of the night sky that Stevens witnessed on an expedition to the Andes Mountains, Amazing Space is a film that captures the uplifting and unifying feeling of experiencing the cosmos at its peak brilliance. Recognizing Hoffmann’s sound as being “heartfully courageous, perfectly poignant, edgy yet lucid, and classically infused,” (Common Ground Magazine) Stevens tapped her to compose the soundtrack, which formed the foundation for the film’s visual exploration through stars, galaxies, and nebulas.



Having studied extensively with French sound healing pioneer Fabian Maman, Hoffmann decided to correlate the movie’s visual ascent from Earth to space with a sonic rise through the body’s energy centers, or chakras. From guttural, Earthly songs like the soundtrack opener “All is One” to the stratospheric wind synth sounds on “Elixir Field” and the ethereal male/female vocal duet on “Celestial Sight,” the Amazing Space soundtrack immerses listeners in the enormity and mystery of the universe while simultaneously making them feel intimately connected to it.

                                          

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Jamie Lynn Hart

Release: Boston based artist Jamie Lynn Hart creates a seamless blend of rock and pop that backs up her powerhouse belt and infectious melodies. With her captivating voice, poetic lyrics and mastered musicianship, she creates a commanding sound reminiscent of Joss Stone meets Grace Potter. Hart discovered her love of songwriting as a teen in Milford, New Hampshire. She later attended Florida International University to earn her Bachelor's of Music in Vocal Performance, then went on to pursue her Master's of Music at Boston University, while collaborating with local musicians and creating her own original band. Since then, Hart has released two EPs, Jamie Lynn Hart (2007) and Contract Called Love (2009), and performed at notable venues along the East Coast, including Showcase Live and Brighton Music Hall in Boston and The Bitter End and Sullivan Hall in New York. Years of studying music, touring with her band and releasing two EPs have all led to the inception of her debut full-length album Anticipate. "I’ve been anticipating a full-length release that truly represents my sound and message. I really took my time with this project to make sure it was something I’d be really proud of," said Hart. From retro-soul and pop melodies to intimate acoustic ballads, Anticipate highlights Hart's lyrical pop voice layered over a roots rock groove. Heavily influenced by her personal experiences, her songs are relatable stories filled with honest messages. "I strongly dislike generic or trite lyricism, so I strive to make sure my writing is original yet accessible," said Hart. Hart just released her new full-length album The Let Go on February 17, 2015, which features 11 original tracks with Hart's signature vocals that Music Box Pete calls Hart's vocals "soothing and powerful". Check out more information at JamieLynnHart.com.

The Let Go is out now and available HERE


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Monday, February 23, 2015

Dani Mari

News: An avid fan of Billie Holiday and Mazzy Star, Dani Mari was born to sing. Her music is fueled by personal narratives embedded in the craft of classic storytelling and the emotional insight of a most unlikely “old soul”. Audiences across the United States and throughout Europe have gravitated toward her beautifully haunting voice and the simplistic elegance of her lyrics which transcend our current snapshot of popular music.She has been featured on NPR, BBC, MTV, WXPN (including the Gene Shay Folk Show on WXPN) and Brooklyn Vegan and has collaborated with FEAR CLUB from Paris, Sun Glitters and was formerly in the dream pop duo, Lockets. She has performed at SXSW, The Philadelphia Folk Festival, Musikfest and many other festivals and venues across the world. In addition she has performed with acts such as Sylvan Esso, St. Lucia, Twin Sister, Exitmusic, Widowspeak, Mates of State, Patti Smith, Edward Sharp & the Magnetic Zeros, Of Montreal and more.



Dani Mari is currently working with the folk-pop band Lovers League and is set to release a wider body of work for her solo project with boutique art label, Someplace Called Brooklyn. With nothing more than an acoustic guitar and stories of her life experience, her songs merely hint at Dani Mari’s desire to transport listeners the world over to an era of nostalgia which exists within the depths of her soul.

                                                        

This month Dani Mari and Will Hanza are curating a few different tribute shows at Cameo Gallery in Brooklyn, NY. February 26th will be a tribute for the 20th anniversary of Radiohead's album "The Bends." The goal of the event is to encourage creativity, collaboration and community through art and music. We will also be donating part of the proceeds to charity. There will be 12 bands performing one cover song from an album and two original songs. Tickets can be purchased Here.


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Music

Friday, February 20, 2015

Honey & the 45s

Release: Honey & the 45s is a Chicago based blues/rock band featuring two female front-women. Known for its soulful sound and jazzy undertones, the band was originally formed as an acoustic group by lead singer, songwriter and guitarist Kristina Cottone, and singer, violinist and saxophonist Kim Kozel.  Honey & the 45s’ unique sound has evolved into a soulful rock ‘n’ roll band by adding lead guitarist Jon Gould, bassist Sean Tatum, and drummer Jarad Kleinstein.


Honey & the 45s’ debut album, The Need, was released in September of 2012.  Five of the tracks off The Need were remixed by Grammy-Award nominated engineer Fred Breitberg and ‘spun’ on over 100 radio stations nationwide.


In 2014, the band took home the award for best Blues/Jazz band at the Chicago Independent Music Awards, and went on to open on the main stage for Cold War Kids at the Rock ‘N’ Roll Marathon in Chicago and Big Data in St. Louis. Honey & the 45s has been featured in print, on commercials, in press conferences and has performed at some of the most prestigious music festivals and venues in Chicago and the Midwest.


Their new EP captures seven tracks of progressive soul, fusing elements of rock, blues, jazz, funk and Americana. Core members Kristina Cottone and Kim Kozel formed Honey & the 45s in 2009 as a folk/acoustic group.


Honey’s album, MAD, was released in December of 2014 and has received critical acclaim. We were lucky enough to braved the winter cold and catch up with Kristina Cottone from the windy city of Chicago.


R. Thanks for taking the time to catch up with R360. For the purpose of our audience please introduce yourselves and tell us how the band came about?

KC. Thank you, R360.?I am happy to give an introduction of the band: Honey & the 45s is a Chicago based blues/rock band featuring two female front-women. We're known for our soulful sound, jazzy undertones, and our magnetic live shows.


R. MAD is your current release. Could you share with us the over-all influences that shaped both the making and production of the new album. How different is it from your last?
KC. MAD was (and is) a special project for us. It was important to the band that this new album was top-quality and recorded in great Chicago studio. We launched a Kickstarter to support our efforts and were overwhelmed with the response. We ended up surpassing our Kickstarter goal. The album was recorded at IV Lab Studios and, once we got in the studio, the creativity kept flowing and we ended up going over even our over-funded budget. The sounds on the record are a mix of blues, jazz, rock, soul, and pop. The theme of the album was inspired by the Jack Kerouac "Mad Ones" quote from On The Road:

The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars.


This quote struck a chord with us because as a band, we have been making the effort to stay focused on being a totally original project. We have really been narrowing in on our sound, our goals, our passion and what it means to be an artist, or a 'Mad One.' It’s not an easy path, but it's an exciting and fulfilling one. We do burn, burn, burn to make make music. MAD is a very special record to us. We are proud of it.





R.How would you describe and rate the music scene of the city you are currently living in and how important is it in terms of what you're actually writing about?
KC. Chicago is a fantastic music city. You can find any kind of music on any night of the week. With roots in Jazz and Blues, the city's music scene has really paid homage to those genres and also expanded way beyond. Does the city's music scene affect what we are writing about? We are a product of our environment, we are surrounded by a lot of music we love, and so yes, I think the vibe of the music in this city plays a part in our sound.


R. What constitutes a good live performance in your opinion? What’s your approach to performing on stage?
KC. What constitutes a good live performance is weather the band itself and the audience are engaged. It doesn't matter if you're playing to two people or to 2,0000. If you "have them," you have them. If you don't, you don't. Perhaps the most important thing musicians can do is be genuine and be alive in the moment. If people get the sense you are "playing at something" they will become disengaged and move on. A good live performance is a genuine performance. We don't spend a lot of time chatting it up with the audience. We want to focus on the music and our chemistry playing together. Being honest and passionate, that's what we strive for.

R.Do you feel it's important that an audience is able to deduct the processes and ideas behind a work purely on the basis of the music? If so, how do you make them transparent?
KC. No. Honestly, I don't think that's important. It's the mood that's important. Mood first. Sure, I think some people care about the process, but mostly people want to know "does it move me?" Maybe even literally dancing! If a fan or audience is going to connect with you, it's going to be the whole package. The vibe. The honesty. The groove. Plus, it's no fun if everyone knows all your secrets. Where's the magic in that?

R. What are your up-to-date performance plans? tours? or festivals for 2015 and beyond?
KC. We have a lot of plans! We are currently booking summer touring in support of our new album. We have a lot of Midwest mini-tours in the works (Bloomington, Springfield, St. Louis. Milwaukee, Madison). We hope to have a longer tour to the east coast this summer as well. We keep our website up-to-date with our shows as we lock them in.

We also have a licensing/sync deal in the works and we are hoping for the best with that. Our biggest goal is to support our album and songs in the best way that we can. We want our music heard.

Last but not least...

R. The future of music will become...
KC. Influenced with the good stuff from past; everything good comes back around (or does a 360) ;).

MAD is out now and available for download HERE


  
Upcoming Shows

03/01/15 The Hideout - Chicago, IL
04/18/15 9th Street Pub - LaSalle Peru, IL
05/29/15 Reggies Rock Club - Chicago, IL
08/27/15 Ayre in the Square - Milwaukee, WI


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Sunday, February 15, 2015

Sweet Suspense

X Factor fan favorite girl group, Sweet Suspense. Since their time on The X Factor the girls have signed to Jason Derulo's record label, Future History, and have been busy recording new music and establishing themselves as positive role models for their fans. Sweet Suspense's  original holiday song, "Just Another Night" [recorded with Derulo and grammy-winning producers] debuted nationwide and is currently available on iTunes.

The girls took over Chicago and shot their music video for "Just Another Night" which debuted this week!

                                                  

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