Friday, June 30, 2006

E D E N - NYC '06

E D E N ...the journey unfolds...

A few of my friends have been listening in the back door for a little while to a new project I've been working on. Most have shared their honest feelings about it, and overwhelmingly it's been positive.., but there's a few who have yet to fully express themselves and I don't pretend to know what they're thinking.., or feeling, for that matter. I suspect, like with anything that's a little different from what's in the marketplace, you can have that initial reaction, "yeah, it's nice, but can it play at drive time?" That would matter to me, if that mattered to me, and since it obviously doesn't, that's all I will say about that statement.

"I don't know who your audience is", usually appears around the second or third listen.., and once again, my instinct is to ignore that comment as well.., but this one deserves a response. My audience for these new tunes is, in fact, the audience I've been attempting to reach from the very first song I ever recorded... heck, that I ever sang! I just want to help people get from Monday to Tuesday without slitting their wrists. But, if I'm honest, I don't think I've been terribly successful, however. I listen back to my old tunes and I hear an attempt to reach this audience lyrically, but musically, the tunes have always been sub par to me.

Enter KEMO and GOERSCH and BEN HUMAN and FRANZ of, evocators and angels with electronic wings.

Back at the beginning of the year, I was approach by KEMO of Germany who wrote an email asking about collaborations.., to which I was willingly about to pass on to Jeremiah Alexis, the other half of the entity TaoBrothers, to whom I just knew he was referring to. But, surprise!!, he had listened to "How Can I Tell You" and felt that I could bring something fresh to the snippets of beats he was offering. At first, I must admit, I was flattered, but quickly that turned into, ..."what can I do with these rhythms?" and I put the email aside.., for nearly three months!! When I finally decided to listen, again.., something incredible happened. I found myself humming along, singing old hymns and other lost treasures from my childhood over these sample beats. I would go on to choose three and would later get the full tunes, but alas.., intimidated by the daunting task.., I put the project aside. Once again, I was spurred into action by another twist of fate.., KEMO was passing through New York City to visit his mother enroute to a Hawaii where his father lives and he's asking, via email, if we might finally meet and get together in the studio and work on a tune, or two. "Yeah, ...sure", I confidently said, while screaming inside my head, "oh my God!!".

We would go on to meet.., and an hour later, take up residence in Jay Deasel's studio ( on Roosevelt Island (where I had created DaRk LoVE and my vocal technique of mulitple track singing).., and when the beat dropped for what now we know as RISE.., I felt that I had finally gotten to say, what I'd been trying to say to an audience that would not only listen to these wicked beat.., but would certainly find solace in the lyrics that the Spirit gave me that day.

I was on a high for weeks to come.., but once again.., the tune set on a shelf for another month as schedules conflicted and all the other producers involved had things to work out concerning their feelings about this new direction to their music that seemingly came out of nowhere, but was 'here' now and I felt in my spirit that there might be questions like, "now, what" lurking in the background, too. In the end, the first upload happened over this past weekend and SAVE ME, Tonight is well on it's way to becoming a favorite amongst some of my most cherished arists friends who I respect dearly. I wrote this lyric in honor of my brother, who passed away from Aids in the early 90's. But, recently MERCIES MAY reviewed SAVE ME and I must admit, he touched more than a few nerves with his dead on observations. It's posted on 23 June, in this blog, so that you can also experience this talented muse at work.

Soon you'll get to hear JOY from the Goersch beatbook. That lyric is honor is our grandmothers, now deceased, 'tho we never shared our respective stories 'till I had already conceived of and sang my lyric to the music that I would later learn had a commonality with his grandmother.. and eventually you'll hear RISE featuring KEMO on spoken word, the one that started it all. That lyric is going to become our anthem..., I just have a feeling. It's a tune of empowerment and a reminder that we have a serious job to do, as creative souls, and we must renew our minds and efforts to accomplish our goals with determination to be our best selves, in the process.

Where do I go from here? As E D E N, I pray I'll just get to sing more and more of this music that heals and reveals and allows the listener to work out their own salvation, as they dance themselves into a sacred place. I know that I'm having the time of my life.., and I pray that you'll experience this jubilation, too.

I am, now and forever, E D E N ... the name is often used as a reference to paradise, or the first home of mankind.., but for me, it's unused reference is my reason for this moniker: A state of innocence, bliss, or ultimate happiness. I'm challenged, daily, to live up to my new name..., and you know what, "it's finally happening".





There's an overwhelming, ever growing list of independent artists, and believe it or not, many are finding their way, daily, to MySpace. If a person really wanted to, you could literally find a quality, ready to be signed talent, on the hour, each hour of the day, for a week. That's 24 times 7, for you math geeks for a total of 168 new artists. It's a challenge I make to any industry insider that might be reading this review. Dare me to do your job for you and I promise I could not only 'improve' your artist roster for the better, but put some quality music and artists into the marketplace and off of welfare in the process. Yeah, it's boastful.., but true. This edition of SOUND MIND and MUSIC WEEK in REVIEW is going to highlight a few of the hardest working artists I know at various stages of their careers. If you're in a position to assist them, no matter how small a contribution, please do so..., they're deserving of every little honor.., especially the LOVE that's free to give, the last time I checked. Oh yeah, industry insider.., I humbly accept your offer. I really want to see all the talent of this caliber, 'make it'. It's only righteous.

Brother EDEN Douglas

New York, New York


1. THE O

If I were giving out an award to the most ingenious marketing ever of an indie artist, THEO EASTWIND would win hands down. I know of many artists that have taken their music on the road and broken their acts at a grassroots level, but few have done it, literally, on the streets on a consistent basis. Theo must have a cot someplace in the subway system of NYC 'cause he's down there more than the travelers. I can't even count the number of times I seen him, heard him.. and each time I've experienced him I always think.., 'why is he still here', especially after such the incredible release of ONE (his third CD) a few years back.., 'surely he should be on his way to certain fame?' I'm beginning to suspect that this is just another 'venue' to Theo..., he always seems totally at peace, geniunely interested in being this intimate with his transient crowd and always gracious and accepting of the compliments, contributions and random purchases of his CD's. THE O is his latest release and it's extremely well-produced and has some stunning songwriting and well performed vocals much like his debut. You can follow his well documented exploits on his official site, where you'll discover much press has already happened for this transplanted Austrian soul. Do experience his bio for his really heartwarming story that proves just how 'badly' he wanted his life to change after several setbacks as a young man learning some of life's most intense lessons. His presence on MySpace is a chance for those of you that don't travel the NYC subway system on a regular basis to experience him and become another intimate friend of Theo. You'll hear the depth of his talent.., and witness just what singing literally for your supper teaches you about 'performing' your original songs like they're old classics. Highlights of the release for me is CLOSE, HOME and HEAD Again, but you'll have to get the CD to hear one of those choices. It's a worthy investment in an artist that would really be appreciative. I know, he said thank you with his eyes when I stooped down and bought my copy.


I just 'discovered' VINNIE JAMES this week and I will be first to say, 'shame on me' for not being even more plugged in to have heard this incredible artist's work, before 'his invite' to listen to his artistry. So, this review is redundant in the sense that he's got quite a following, but in the strange universe that there's another soul, like me, that didn't know of his philantrophic and political musings in some of the most provocative lyric writing I've heard (since last weeks' Derek Kehler) this week, all sang with an intensity and played with the adept skill of a troubadoor. I'm sure there's much press about his 'race' and how that plays into the marketing of his music, but in the end, .he's just really good at what he does. BLACK MONEY is a video on his page, and his bio will speak volumes of the 'who's who' that he's worked and toured with.., so just go get filled up to overflowing with the talented Vinnie James and join in the long list of fans and supporters he's garnered through hard work, preseverance and pride in his craft. While there, give a listen to HOMELESS MAN for a truly unique approach on a timeless subject.


Another new artist to me, but certainly not 'unknown' is ALEXI MURDOCH. His tunes have been a part of many prime times shows like Dawson's Creek, Everwood and The O.C. He's on a mini-tour promoting his new release and he's got quite a schedule to keep for the next couple of months almost working daily up and down the East Coast before heading cross country over to the West Coast. For this artist, it's really all about the music and ORANGE SKY is a truly magnificent work of art. This is songwriting at it's finest. This tune will be his signature song, I bet, for many years to come. The tone of the piece, like his voice, is reflective and honest and doesn't try to be anything, except it's own truth. You get the feeling he writes, first for himself, like he's healing his own soul, before he ever thinks of the depth of his lyrics and how they might affect another. TIME WITHOUT CONSEQUENCE is his much anticipated release and he's getting nothing but great press from it. It would appear that he's acheived what every artist strives for.., critical and commercial recognition. I don't have much in the way of bio information.., so with this artist, I'll just have to say the music is all that I have to inform me of 'who he is' and with the EP, FOUR SONGS that included ORANGE SKY, became the all time no. 1 selling artist on CDBaby, moving nearly 50,000 units of this auspicious debut. Go, listen and find out for yourself, how the old adage, 'your gift will make room for you' applies so aptly to Alexi. Remember this as model, my artist friends.., less is indeed 'more', if your heart and soul is truly represented in that humble offering.

Okay.., it's hot in NYC and I can't hold this laptop in my lap another second.., but I just wanted to say that this edition, like all the others, is a joy to release, but, namely 'cause this time around, yours truly finally has some music he's awfully proud of as well that finally answers the questions if I'm ever going to 'sing again'. There'll be some special press about it all, in time, but in the meantime, my dear friend, Mercies May has said of few incredibly nice words on my behalf that you can read, here, also in this blog on 23 June. The tune that's just the tip of melting iceberg is SAVE ME, Tonight. In many ways, it's prophetic that all of this music that I've had the pleasure of reviewing is doing exactly that, saving my sanity.. and it's my way of saying 'thanks' for allowing me to listen to you, one and all.




I have great respect for songwriters.., maybe even a little bit more than I do for vocalists. The juxtaposition of words in the melody and the choice of words, even more so, can make a good song, great. This blog this week is really about the songwriters.. and in most cases, they and the artist are the same and what a treat you're in for in this abbreviated edition of SOUND MIND and MUSIC WEEK in REVIEW.

Brother EDEN Douglas

New York, New York


I know that you think you know my 'style' of music and you might be correct in some of your assumptions. But if the truth be told, I have more in common with todays' opening song stylings than might first appear. I was born in the rural Texas and I never got FM radio till I was in my late teens, so Motown and all the 'soul' music that most have grown up on was only on the stereo and seldom on television in my childhood. What I heard, daily, was southern gospel, country, blue grass and folk music on AM radio. I learned (and still know) lyrics to some of the strangest tunes, and trust me, learning this one has been my joy, this week. I make no bones about it.., I love this song and how it tells such an honest tale and as you're listening, you'll think, 'there but by the grace of God, go I'. Mr. Kehler has given us a very timeless reading of his lyrics and the comparisons abound to all the great troubadors of yesteryear. I won't mention them, 'cause it'll distract from such a young man singing in what is truly his own unique and distinctive voice, and to saddle him with comparisons will lessen his important contribution to the art craft. This gift of lyric and delivery really can't be 'taught', this style of writing and singing has to simply be felt and those that do it well, should be honored as masters of their craft. Ladies and Gentlemen, prepare for a particularly appropriate song on this Father's Day edition of SOUND MIND and MUSIC WEEK in REVIEW. I'm honored to get to introduce to you one of the best artists I've had the pleasure of listening to. I bet you're gonna feel the same. I present, BEAT UP OLD HOBO...


Byron Isaacs, Tony Leone, Amy Helm, Fiona McBain, Glenn Patscha

SummerStage NYC


Singing, as if enraptured.., this ensemble is really special. Their blend is a touch of southern comfort soul and down home gospel, the kind that used to raise the dead on a hot Saturday night tent meeting. You do yourself a favor to experience this multi-instrumental tour-de-force of raw talent and adept skill. Vocalists, one and all, you will be amazed at the textures the different blends of the individual voices create as they harmonize seemingly from another plane, always landing in and around the chord. Ollabelle is truly a delight and a perfect way to have spent a warm Saturday in the city. Every song had it's own signature and harmonic stamp and it's difficult to single out a precious moment of the many. Just listen to them on their MySpace page, and be sure to catch them in performance the next chance you can.


Like I said, in the beginning.., this isn't my normal review. These two artists represent the best of a particular style of writing so that to add any more would be in poor taste. I personally feel. Just listen to them, honor them for their craft and I'll be here again, next week with more music that got me through another week of trials and tribulations. Promise.


Teddy ThompsonOllabelleSummerstageRhett MillerOllabelleVerve Forecast



This week was another intense one.., but instead of talking about that.., I'll just say THANK YOU to the universe for taking me through these changes 'cause it's had me truly 'listening' beyond my normal intake to artists that are decidedly unique and special and especially gifted. At some point this is becoming a little redundant to say that each week is equal or better than the week before.., but there seems to be a never ending progression of truly talented souls out here in cyber space that I'm blessed enough to stumble across, now, on a regular basis. Some are friends of each other's and others just find me, somehow.., but in the end, we all end up here, in this latest edition of SOUND MIND and MUSIC WEEK in REVIEW, together. And, that's a good thing.

Brother EDEN Douglas

New York, New York


CHRISTOPHER Dallman - North Hollywood, California

Christopher is on tour this summer. I know 'cause it's so prominently displayed on his page. This might seem like another artist who's just marketing himself ad nauseum, but in this case, we would do well to pay attention. This artist truly has 'something to say' and is quite proficient with a lyric. OVER MY HEAD sneaks up on you and when you realize that he's actually making 'good sense', you're already hooked by the tone of his voice and the arrangement so much so that when you finally do receive the message of the lyric, it's not only welcomed, but a truly life-sustaining breathe of pure spirit! This tune begins this week of wonderful message songs that taught me a thing or two about myself and my struggles to find my sense of 'home'. Enjoy.

PLURAL Z - Nashville, Tennessee

I'm beginning to wonder if we have done a disservice to Nashville in that when we think of this city, we automatically think 'country'. An awful lot of intesting artists and music that's certainly not country seems to be based in Nashville these days. This dynamic duo is certainly leading the pack with their infectious beats and groove music. This tune has a lot to offer from the timely and meaningful lyrics (a rarity in dance music) to the debut of this stunning vocalist, RUBY Amanfu, who I will be talking more about later. TOM Gingerich and AARON Shannon both have some pretty impressive list of credits as producers and engineers for a literal 'who's who' on the music scene in Nashville. So it's all that more impressive that they wouldn't just rest on their laurels but would continue to 'create' for themselves, first (I'm sure) and for others, this truly wonderful music. Kudos for the gift of FLOW at 2:30a, it was just what my soul needed to 'remember' to hold on. Now go have Tao Good Time...

SAM & RUBY - Nashville, Tennessee

This is a coupling made in heaven. Now, don't take my word for it.., just listen with your heart and prepare to be dazzled and humbled in the same instance. These artists are so gifted as individual vocalists that their union almost seems too much to bear. You're equally interested in them as they take solos, wanting in the first instance to hear more.., only to find the sum of the parts is even better. They have a few behind the scene type videos floating out here in cyberspace (on Sam's personal main site) that will reveal their process (recorded live at a cabin in the hills 'in the elements.. for the natural sound...) they're really a special addition and treat to my musical vocabulary, now. SAM Brooker, multi-instrumentalist, engineer and vocals and RUBY Amanfu on vocals... all a part of the ARTIST Revolution that's also their label, but so much MORE.

DANIELA Bove - United Kingdom

Another incredible find this week is DANIELA Bove who sings from a depth that few ever touch, let along are able to be so literate having been there. This tune introduced me also to the wonderful production and artistry of Stephan Altman, who's heard here on cello and several other instuments. Their musical sense of timing, placement, backing vocals in atypical arrangements allows Daniela to really shine in a way that's just pure genius. I know in her bio she sees herself as being a 'bit confused' about things in her formative years.., but from an OUTSIDE perspective, I believe she's well on her way to full clarity of thought .., and heart. Open your eyes, now to this unique experience.

MERCIES May - Gothenburg, Sweden

MERICIES May is my friend. And 'tho we've never met, we're connected in such a way that makes reveiwing him a little difficult. I previously blogged about his project, "Anatomy of Dying Star" as brokenword, so if you're a consistent reader, you know that I adore his lyrical prowess and his ability to contribute to the bed of beats that accompany his musings. This new tune is yet another in a long list of great songs that he has every right to be proud of. Part dance, part funk, with a touch of Roger Troutman ( ZAP Band) thrown in, but all soulful. The music was written by Mercies and Alex Goya, with the sterling extra drum production provided by the magnificent Effraim Kent....hand drums are played by Mikael Sarabi, Guitar by Gustav "munkey" Moberg, and Bass Synth by HÃ¥kan Wirenstrand. This song has so much to say.., so do listen closely as Mercies weaves and rhymes throughout this intricate arrangement to literally take us on the RIDE of our week. From the forthcoming, Crooked Valentine, Broken Heart EP destined to drop, soon. This is the party break... okay??!

LEON - Vienna, Austria

Keeping the party going for another tune or two.., is LEON, my new friend (and first) from Austria. Not sure if this is band or concept name, but he's got a uniquely spiritual vibe to his creations, with DON'T WASTE YOUR TIME, leading the way. The message is straight forward and one you've heard before, but not in six different languages, I bet!! He's a wanderer and philosopher and a talented writer, rapper, producer and visionary and he's surrounded himself with an equally adept group of supporters. Be introduced to the happenings in Vienna, now...

MILOSH - Toronto, Canada

I suppose if a tune gets over 28,000 hits one might want to give a listen to it, to see what everyone is listening to. MILOSH has a few that are in that range, which makes him all that more remarkable and obviously a fan favorite. Although classically trained, his grooves are laid back and YOU MAKE ME FEEL is a nice cool down, now, to this last group of tunes.. and he's basically just singing about the joy of being in love, when it's new... I honor him here for having missed him on so many other opportunities to make known his gift to the world.., simply put, it's just pure joy. You hear Milosh, you smile....

ZACH Williams & The Ramparts -West Palm Beach, Florida

I'm a little at a lost to describe adequately all that ZACH Williams and The Ramparts represent. But just know that they're so deserving of every accolade that will eventually be bestowed upon them. They're a solid band with a truly gifted lead vocalist, but there's a load of talent in the remaining members, as well, and they write tunes that matter and address issues of the heart, life and faith with honesty and a knowingness. I'm a fan of songs that question the 'why' we do whatever we do, especially when we do those things in the name of love. MAYBES will become a classic.., just wait and see if I write the truth. Zach, you're a patient man, and deserved to have been mentioned when I first listened, but I wanted to savour you guys just a little before I 'released' you back to the universe.

Be Blessed, now, as you discover just a great tune.., from a great band.

9. HALF of ME
JEREMY Lister - Nashville, Tennessee

JEREMY Lister dropped a new release this week. SHOOTING STAR. I got an email about it from CD Baby and admittedly I had been waiting for this momentous event for a little while now, thus the email notice. But I can't wait to review it..., cause seeing his name in my email box this week, reminded me of a tune of his that I absolutely love and if you don't know HALF of ME, you're about to have a new favorite tune. It's so good, I literally tear up just listening to it 'cause it's heartbreakingly beautiful and sad and joyous in a very spritual way.., especially when you remember a love you lost but in the end, you knew you just had to go on, anyway.., although 'half of you' was gone. Go get a good cry on and be sure to pick up this artist's music.., you won't be disappointed by the depth of his skill as a musician, writer and certainly as a vocalist. He's got good genes, too, but you'll just have to read about him to find them out!! The music stands as his greatest asset.

Hey Jeremy.., sorry for being so tardy with the review.

RYAN HUSTON - Santa Rosa, California

I sorta end, like I began. Taking about the marketing of music and sometimes there's so much attention to the banners and emails and merchandising, the really good music can be buried by the sheer weight of the deluge. For a moment RYAN Huston was lost to my ears and my sensibility and this week we became reintroduced to one another and without compromise, he's quite good, very palpable and certainly able to translate to a large audience. I give him credit now, where credit is due, with a simple song, sang well from a deeply knowing source of inspiration. That's all that's required to be a part of the next WEEK in REVIEW.

So if you're out there listening and reading and you think I've missed an artist or two.., just let me know.

Until the next time...


Friday, June 23, 2006

SAVE ME, Tonight : a mercies may review

Jun 22, 2006 6:00 AM
A Message and Review from Mercies May of Gothenburg, SWEDEN to 'E D E N'
rather unfortunate, that you can't review your own work for the sound;
*save me* marks a radical departure from the norm for eden, accustom, to a more traditional approach to his vocal style, this new track (as well as several others i have had the pleasure of previewing) showcase a number of aspects and colors to his performance that could easily be lost or go unexploited by a lesser producer and collaborator than the sure footed KEMO. Save me explores the idea of *need* in a way that strangely seems to work backwards from a framework of faith, becoming a sensual, and more personal plea for acceptance from someone more intimate to the narrator(a strange inverse of the formula for some of al green's best work). The production is lean, and balance with a musical composition that draws primarily on the smoother polished pop of mid-career madonna or George Michael with strong subversive leanings towards the likes of late wave trip hop groups like portishead, and even funkadelic (shading nuances in Douglas' voice in a way that for me, conjured Bootsy Collins through the lead melody). *Save Me* marks a turn, or perhaps a paradigm shift for Eden, but if its salvation, or a higher power that he's really looking for, he need look no further than these exciting collaborations for proof.


Saturday, June 03, 2006



There were many moments this week, I truly wanted to 'give up'. I mean the pressure, at times, was unbearable. When your 'livelihood' is threatened and you see yourself down thousands of dollars that must be paid, without delay, it's no time for little faith. I needed momentumental Faith and a firm belief that the Universe is over-whelmingly kind. I also was prohibited from 'begging' the usual suspects for assistance, as this wasn't a test of just finding money as much it was a test of just what I believed to be true about all that I teach and preach. In the end, the Universe did not fail me. I was shown a level of interest in the minutia of my life that hitherto I had not experienced. As always, there was a soundtrack to the evolution of my week and the healing of my heart and faith. Here's a few of those artists and tunes that got me through. Enjoy, like never before, this heavenly edition of SOUND MIND and MUSIC WEEK in REVIEW.

Brother EDEN Douglas

New York, New York



This song is from Micah Dalton's new EP release, ADVANCEMENT. He's challenged us before wtih his first indie release, "THESE ARE THE ROOTS", defying us to truly locate his style, 'tho his influences shine through like the noon day sun. He's a little Marvin Gaye and James Taylor with a dash of Bill Withers sprinkled over influences of Tommy Sims and Bob Dylan. To call him a musical mutt would be kind.., and accurate, and he wears his mystique proudly. His heritage is soul, folk and gospel, finding the common spirit in all those styles while still being able to create something altogether different than the sum of those parts. DISAPPOINTED shows us a master songwriter and storyteller that explores a broken heart in a way that's ingenious. We can apply this lyric to life and this week, I drew strength from it as I realized how much of my own life seems to pale in comparison to places I've already been, people I already met and known.., and sometimes, I'm disappointed at the ordinariness of my life, today. I've been left 'disappointed' when I've only looked at the surface of things. Go, now, and take a listen to an incredible gentle giant in this sea of unsigned sea of talent.


Have you experience pressures that affect you like GRAVITY, pulling you away from your faith 'tho you desire to be in the center of the God's Will and yet you feel constantly out of sync and off-balance? This tune sings to that very conflict and Shawn McDonald allows us a voice through his, to say to GOD that we're doing our best.., and yet that best is lacking. I found this tune at the right moment and this artist in the nick of time. There's many songs like this, but most are written in very preachy terms that often makes one want to run in the opposite direction of the advice. He just lets us peer into his soul and in that we find the courage and strength to hold on..., another day.., another hour..., another 4 minutes and 19 seconds as we listen to a man who 'cares' about the Gravity in our lives, and offers his heartfelt insight. He's got some geniune insights in his blogs, too. Pay attention to this artist. He's one of the one's 'called' for this moment in time..., and as an added bonus, give a listen, too, to I AM NOTHING..., the lyric speaks clearly as to the reasons, why.


There are some songs that you can hear, once, and they stay with you forever. I DON'T KNOW WHY is written and sang beautifully by Shawn Colvin and I've been a fan of the tune since I first heard it, but when I heard Steve Balsamo's version (complete with a guest vocal appearance by Ms. Colvin), it has literally become a song I've had to listen to weekly since I originally heard it about nine months ago as I first came on board at MySpace. Steve's having a ton of success with his group, The Storys, supporting the likes of Elton John on tour, but this song and this sentiment was more than the doctored ordered as my spirit healed this week. Sometimes, we might not totally understand all that's happening, when it's happening, but I've learned to say 'thank you' in my darkest hours for I know I'm in the presence of the Spirit of Change and in the end, whatever I lose will be worth it, in order to advance to the next level. I Don't Know Why allows you to sing away your fears as Steve so eloquently interprets this now classic tune. What a humble and talented man he is, too. You're in for a treat if this is your first introduction to his beautiful tenor.


Another beautiful tenor and friend is Joshua Payne. I cannot adequately prepare you for your first experience of this incredible instrument. I remember, however, that I was listening around the internet as I'm prone to do, clicked on him and keep working..., and in the instance I heard him for the first time, I stopped to read everything I could on him. Yes, he's that good. And having had the major contract on Verve, you might think he'd be 'removed' from barring his soul as he does in his blogs.., but he's also very real. I've learned alot from his posts and I cherish him as one of those whose music touches me as much as a simple email response. This tune is my statement to the universe after my hectic week of struggles.., I CHOOSE NEW YORK is my battle cry as this city hasn't defeated me yet! What a struggle it's been to remain here.., but I'm on a mission to build this creative vision and I'm not down, anymore... not in the slightest.

Thanks, Joshua for giving me a soundtrack to my decision.


Just for pure inspiration, I listen to my friend, Redd Soul. He's got so much going on (about to be a father for the first time) and holding down the 9-5 while entertaining offers always to 'turn him into a star'.., while he continues to create and manage his own label and well, you get the picture. But with all of that going on, every now and then he sneeks upon me to encourage me and without knowing what was going on he posted a message to me that reminded me to 'hold on' at just the right moment. I'm blessed to have gotten this post from many as if I needed to see before my very eyes the tangible results of being an encourager to those whose paths I cross. Listen as Redd sings from his heart about love (and lovemaking) which is as close to heaven as you might can get in this realm. (But, that's a whole 'nother blog, which I'm probably no longer qualified to write about !!) His voice is strong and masculine and full of passion as he sings MORE and lyrically he reminds me to live life to it's fullest, live more ...laugh more and more. Now go get your groove on...

6. I LUV U

This is a new artist to me. But there's much info on his official site, that will allow you to follow his musical journey. I'm only going to address him as a talent that deserves not only a closer look, but a deeper listen. I particuarly admire his statement in his bio that says, "I'd rather be relevant than talented, but hopefully my talent is relevant." To that end, Daniel has earned a spot in this weeks' review with I LUV U from his 2002 release, Hiphopcrisy. This tune is my praise song of the week. It's church, it's soul.., it's a little seductive and it's full of passion. I use the lyric to honor GOD and how I feel about being 'delivered' from the edge of the cliff this week. I invite you to just experience the song and use it as a template to whomever you really love, this week. Now turn it up and let it sweep you away in ever higher ecstasy.


I know this artist from the seventies although you wouldn't know just looking at that photograph that she's been in 'the business' over 30 years, now! Patience (Patti) Howard is a formidable talent whether writing, singing, producing, arranging or just being a spirtual guide.., she does it all with a measure of grace. LIVE OUR LIVES is such a fitting close to this week's journey. It encourages me to recognize that we're literally reaping what we sow at all times. So 'how we're living' directly affects our experiences as we move in and out of other's lives. A constant source of inspiration, as she, too, writes often to keep me focused and on track in this journey, her contribution to this musical week is perfectly suited lyrically for all that I've determined to do 'better' in the week's ahead. Do visit her page, listen, read and be introduced to a menagerie of artists and friends that will further enhance your musical and artistic taste. Keep a watchful eye out for LAMENTATIONS, her next release on Sky Balanced Records.