Through the Years!
This Week at Café

February 26th, 2012
Edition #646 Previously Next

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This Week at Cafe A 15 Season Retrospective (Part 1):
On this edition it's the first in a four part series celebrating music we've played over the past 15 seasons. This first installment is called Through the Years and spotlighted are Dan Siegel, Thom Rotella, and Marcos Ariel while also appearing are Blue Knights, Vibes Alive, and Torcuato Mariano. And as we work 'through the years' we have tracks from as far back as the early 70s right on thru to the 00s - but to get the whole thing started there's a Special EFX's tune from Chieli Minucci & George Jinda and the final cd they recorded together - from the Body Language release, it's called Seduction and it one of the selections that highly influenced the concept that became Café Jazz!
In This Issue:

After Hours - Vibes Alive
Soft Silk - Blue Knights
Green Eyes - Marcos Ariel
Lady of the Moon - Thom Rotella
Ocean Way - Torcuato Mariano
Soft Touch - Dan Siegel

SPINLIST: Spinlist

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Highlights Hour One
After Hours - Vibes Alive:
Dirk Richter became serious as a mallet player when he was eight and in his early years, he was influenced by many of the greats of the day. After high school, he met up with Randall Crissman, a guitarist who had also composed for film and TV. They soon began collaborating and shared the credits for the 1997 Vibes Alive release, a project that was initially issued under Richter's name. Then eleven years later, the team of Richter and Crissman miraculously re-surfaced as Vibes Alive, borrowing the name of album title from their first collaboration as their band moniker. The project entitled After Hours featured several 'Vibes Alive' alumni - Jeff Lorber, Luis Conte, and Jimmy Johnson all reprised their roles - while Gary Meek and Vinnie Colaiuta further enhanced the ambiance! From that sophomore effort we present the mood-drenched title tracks and one of our favourites from 2008!

CD: After Hours (2008)
Label: Swingding Records

Vibes Alive - After Hours

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Blue Knights - Red Night
Soft Silk - Blue Knights:
One of the more popular groups back in the 90s was a project out of Germany billed as Blue Knights. Initially the band was a collaboration between Curtis McLaw and Jan-Heie Erchinger (aka Jay Heye). The pair had struck up a friendship and discovered a shared love for some of the funkier sounds emanating out of the USA. After a bit of experimentation, they launched Blue Knights, a project that was inspired by the world of fashion and one which featured light jazzy piano, simple but beautiful melodies, and rich layers of sound. Their Blue Night debut issued in 1992 was a great success, and that was followed by Red Night shortly after. From that sophomore effort we have Soft Silk with Bill Joseph Flynn and Mr. P.T. on guitar and sax round out the sounds of the combo!

CD: Red Night (1993)
Label: Innovative Communication
Marcos Ariel - My Only Passion
Green Eyes - Marcos Ariel:
In a career that dates back to the 70s, Marcos Ariel has long dedicated himself to promoting the music of his homeland. The Brazilian born keyboardist began piano at seven - he studied classically in his youth and as early as nine, he dreamed of recording his own music. Later, his interests broadened to include jazz and while adding flute to his repertoire, he also underwent intensive studies at the School of Music for the Brazilian Symphonic Orchestra. Afflicted with a passion for both classical music and jazz, Ariel began crossing musical frontiers with his first solo effort issued in 1986. A follow up released a couple of years later led to international recognition, and through the years he's continued to enjoy a measure of success with each of his subsequent efforts. In particular, My Only Passion in 1999 proved one of his most focused. From that release, we present Green Eyes, a track featuring Ricardo Silveira and one of the most exquisite that we've ever played!

CD: My Only Passion (1999)
Label: Paras Recordings

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Highlights Hour Two
Thom Rotella - A Day in the Life
Lady of the Moon - Thom Rotella:
Back in the mid to late 90s thru until the early 00s, the smooth genre was really beginning to blossom. Music was creative and inspired, and among those setting the standard was our good friend Thom Rotella. A native of Niagara Falls New York, Rotella had launched his solo career toward the end of the 80s, with a trio of efforts that established him as a favourite in an emerging non-formulaic field. However, for a good portion of the 90s, Rotella was unable to land a record deal; but when he did 'resurface' it was well worth the wait - the resulting projects were arguably among the finest ever in the format. In addition, Thom was one of the first performers gracious enough to give us an interview when The Café had but 'a single table' - so we've always thought of Thom and his music with fondness! By 2002, our establishment had undergone a few renos and that was when Rotella returned from a 5 year record hiatus. From a project that compounded the excitement of an earlier day, we present the vibrant and fresh as ever Lady of the Moon!

CD: A Day in the Life (2002)
Label: V2 Records / Trippin 'n Rhythm
Torcuato Mariano - Last Look
Ocean Way - Torcuato Mariano:
Many of the musical flavours emanating from Brazil have long found a natural fit with the music that we love here at The Café - of those, one of the more prominent voices has belonged to Argentine-born Torcuato Mariano. When he was 14, Mariano moved from his native Buenos Aires to Rio de Janeiro and there, his focus soon turned to jazz. Within the matter of a few years, Mariano had performed with Leo Gandelman, toured Europe with Ivan Lins, and done extensive session work while recording with many of Brazil's finest including Sergio Mendes. It wasn't until the mid 90's, that Mariano finally moved toward a solo career. His 1994 debut made history as the first album to be released simultaneously in both Brazil and the US. Meanwhile his follow-up in Last Look reached the US year-end top 30 with the single, Ocean Way, placing in the top 20 songs for 1995! Now many years after its release, Ocean Way remains one of our all-time favourites!

CD: Last Look (1995)
Label: Windham Hill
Dan Siegel - Clairevoyance

Soft Touch - Dan Siegel :
With a solo career that extends back to 1979, Dan Siegel can be considered a genuine pioneer in the smooth movement. His debut featured appearances by both Lee Ritenour and John Klemmer while his sophomore release, The Hot Shot, reached No.1 on the jazz chart in 1981. A couple of years later, Siegel relocated to LA to pursue scoring opportunities in film & TV while continuing his solo career. Both prolific and highly regarded, Dan has issued nearly 20 cds under his own name, plus there have been a trio of efforts as well as a best of as leader of the all-star Birds of a Feather project. Slick is the word that comes to my mind when describing a Siegel selection - catchy, beautifully structured, and brilliantly played. Apart from expounding upon the quality of his music, we have long held a fondness for Dan not only as a musician but on a personal level as he was the very first to grant us an interview back in the day when The Café was merely in start-up mode. In keeping with this thought, we now return to that time for one of Dan's prettiest pieces, the delicate Soft Touch and a long-time favourite!

CD: Clairevoyance (1998)
Label: Countdown Records / Unity Label Group

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After Hours ~ Exclusive to our Web Site and Select Affiliates:
More Years: The fireworks continue for After Hours and for part one in a series. Included on the show are Shades of Soul and Voodoo Village. There's music by Jonathan Cain and Michael Paulo; while also appearing are Everette Harp and Chieli Minucci. In addition we have The Clayton/Scott Group, Carlos Reyes, Blake Aaron, The Didgeridoo Project, trumpeter C M, and the legendary Crusaders! They're all cued as part of a 13-track set and that begins with Chris Camozzi and the smooth sounds of Suede! Spinlist

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