February 15, 2003
In the showcase spotlight on this edition is Gentle Force. That's the new one from 3rd Force and we have a few selected tracks that we'll be playing throughout the show. Then in hour 2 on Fresh Trax, we'll be featuring the much anticipated release from the original Crusaders, their first in over 20 years. We have something from Chuck Yamek; there's a tune from Yanni and his latest while J. Thompson and saxman Don Diego fill the bill.
Gentle Force - 3rd Force
At its nucleus, the group is an instrumental trio composed of William Aura, Craig Dobbin, & Alain Eskinasi. Each is a multi-instrumentalist as well as being an accomplished producer and arranger. When playing together something quite unique happens - a type of synergy occurs. In fact, their name refers to the force that is generated when collaboration yields a product that is larger the sum of its parts. Creating a background laced with percussive grooves, the band establishes a platform that allows them to spotlight the talents of various guest artists. As we open our feature the selection we’ve chosen is highlighted by Tom Scott on sax and Greg Carmichael & Miles Gilderdale, both of Acoustic Alchemy, on guitar on Young Again.
|Fresh Trax: Part One|
- Chuck Yamek
Chuck is based just outside of Music City USA, ( Nashville Tennessee), and he's been playing guitar since the age of seven. For a time Yamek resided in Los Angeles, and became highly sought after for tours and session work. He’s enjoyed a career which to this point includes work with industry heavy weights such as Richard Elliot, Tower of Power, George Benson, and Eric Clapton to name but a few. In addition, he’s toured the world with his renowned guitar clinics, and in so doing, introduced his passion and signature sound to thousands of enthusiastic listeners. To a large extent his debut release is a collection of songs that grew from these performances.
de Funk - The Crusaders
The original members; Joe Sample, Wilton Felder and Stix Hooper have a history as a band that dates back to about 1954 or so. For a period in the 70s, they were considered one of the most popular and influential combos in contemporary jazz, and they've recently reunited for their first project in over 20 years. It’s called Rural Renewal and from it we have Viva de Funk, the first single.
|Fresh Trax: Part Two|
Me The Truth - J. Thompson
Thompson is a Bay area guitarist, songwriter and producer with over 20 years of music industry experience. He began his professional music career in the 1970’s, as the guitarist for a group managed by Tommy Smothers and at the age of 19, gained national recognition when he performed on the Merv Griffin show. He’s enjoyed studio work with Greg Allman, Steve Smith, and Tom Coster, and as well played bass with the Jorge Santana band in the late 70’s and 80’s and with the Pablo Cruise band in the 90’s. His first SJ release back in 1989 was described by the Gavin Report as "One of the year’s best", as it enjoyed national airplay in the US for an extended period. The new one is called Romantic Night and features an all-star line-up of musicians which includes Will Kennedy and Mark Russo, both formerly of the Yellowjackets, and Terence Disley who has recently worked with Acoustic Alchemy. The cd presents an interesting mix of vocals and instrumentals and from it we have Tell Me the Truth with lyrics in French seductively whispered by Maggie Colby.
Too Late - Yanni
The Greek-born composer and arranger achieved his first taste of success surprisingly not a musician but as a member of the National Swimming Team for his country. It was when he was just 14 that he broke the freestyle record. Shortly after high school Yanni relocated to the U.S. and enrolled at the U of Minnesota where he earned a degree in psychology. It wasn’t long however, before the self-taught keyboardist embarked on a career in music. His first independent release gained a large following which has grown with each successive effort. Now 20 or so cds later, Ethnicity is his latest.
Must Be Heaven - Don Diego
A veteran sax player, Diego has received numerous awards in his home state of Texas and over the past few years, he’s had several releases that have gained national exposure. His new one is titled Heaven, and from it we have This Must Be Heaven to cap off the FT segment.