Kitaro is one of the most popular and influential new age artists of all time, having sold millions of records and toured across the world numerous times, in addition to winning Grammy and Golden Globe awards. His style fuses contemplative, highly melodic synthesizer work with acoustic instrumentation, drawing from Eastern musical traditions as well as folk, classical, and rock influences. Interestingly enough, the famous Japanese composer taught himself to play electric guitar in high school – inspired by the R&B music of Otis Redding. In the early '70s, Kitaro formed the Far East Family Band, which released two albums of progressive rock. In 1972, however, he met the innovative German synthesist Klaus Schulze during a trip to Europe. Kitaro was hooked. He built his first synthesizer and began experimenting with all kinds of unusual sounds…
Dare to Dream is the eighth studio album by Greek keyboardist and composer Yanni, released in March 1992 on Private Music. The album peaked at No. 2 on Billboard's Top New Age Albums chart and at No. 32 on the Billboard 200 chart in the same year. It went gold within two months of its release and was nominated for a Grammy.
There have been many Huey Lewis & the News hits compilations released overseas, but 2006's simply named Greatest Hits is only the second U.S. comp, following Time Flies, which appeared a decade earlier. At a generous 21 tracks, Greatest Hits is not only five songs longer than Time Flies, but it's a better-chosen collection, too. It may be missing "Bad Is Bad," but it has a stronger selection of early songs, like the wonderful "Hope You Love Me Like You Say You Do," plus a better selection of latter-day songs, including Huey's duet with Gwyneth Paltrow on Smokey Robinson's "Cruisin'." That doesn't mean the disc is perfect, however – although this does have a stronger representation of their earlier material, it could use just a little bit more, and the non-chronological sequencing is a bit of a headache. That said, this has all the hits and no weak songs, making it the best Huey Lewis & the News compilation yet.
Having proved his writing credentials with his debut album, Bill Wyman mixed his own compositions with outside material second time around. Issued in February 1976, Stone Alone was Bill Wyman's second solo album. As per usual Bill had worked with a star-studded session band, the contributions this time around including Van Morrison, Joe Walsh, Dr John, Ron Wood, Al Kooper, Nicky Hopkins, and Jim Keltner. Van Morrison added sax to a revival of Gary Bonds' A Quarter To Three, Ron Wood and Joe Walsh played guitar, and Bill Wyman steered his superstar band through a righteous set of bluesy rock'n'roll.
Although Jane's Addiction's 1987 self-titled debut was an intriguing release (few alternative bands at the time had the courage to mix modern rock, prog rock, and heavy metal together), it paled in comparison to their now classic major-label release one year later, Nothing's Shocking. Produced by Dave Jerden and Jane's Addiction vocalist Perry Farrell, the album was more focused and packed more of a sonic wallop than its predecessor; the fiery performances often create an amazing sense that it could all fall apart at any second, creating a fantastic musical tension. Such tracks as "Up the Beach," "Ocean Size," and one of alt-rock's greatest anthems, "Mountain Song," contain the spaciousness created by the band's two biggest influences, Led Zeppelin and the Cure.
American band formed in 1960s whose reverent revival of 1950s rock 'n' roll made them a sensation. Sha Na Na parlayed their straight-ahead '50s rock & roll revivalism into a successful touring career, even if they were never as popular on record as they were live. The group's image and style were unabashedly anachronistic, as they covered '50s pop and doo wop standards, slicked their hair back in the greaser fashion, and dressed in flamboyant '50s costumes. Sha Na Na formed at Columbia University in 1968 and quickly built a name for themselves with live performances, often at the Fillmore East, featuring such theatrics as a dance contest for audience members. The original lineup consisted of vocalists Rob Leonard, Scott Powell, Johnny Contardo, Frederick "Denny" Greene, Richard "Ritchie" Joffe, and Don York, plus guitarists Chris Donald, Elliot Cahn, and Henry Gross, bassist Bruce Clarke, drummer John "Jocko" Marcellino, pianists "Screamin'" Scott Simon and John "Bowzer" Bauman, and former Danny and the Juniors saxophonist Leonard Baker.
On September 17, 2008, the legendary Levon Helm took his beloved Midnight Ramble on the road to one of America’s treasured venues, Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium. Accompanied by such luminaries as Buddy Miller, John Hiatt, Sheryl Crow, George Receli, Sam Bush and Billy Bob Thornton, the Levon Helm Band created an unforgettable night of stage magic. Ramble At The Ryman – Live CD & DVD (each sold separately) captures the joy, essence and reverence of Helm’s live shows. This collection features the Levon Helm Band in a veritable tour through the American songbook, performing classics from Helm’s tenure with The Band, as well as song’s from his Grammy winning release Dirt Farmer and selections from artists such as Chuck Berry, the Carter Family and more. Ramble at the Ryman came on the heels of Dirt Farmer’s stunning debut which won a Grammy in 2008 for Best Traditional Folk Album and landed Helm a spot in Rolling Stone’s The 100 Greatest Singers of All Time.
Flesh & Bone is an improvement from Paid Vacation, mainly because Richard Marx isn't trying as hard to be contemporary. Marx has accepted, more or less, that he isn't fighting for a position in the Top 40 and has resigned himself to the adult contemporary charts. While that means Flesh & Blood doesn't even rock as hard as, say, "Don't Mean Nothin'," it does mean that is pleasantly and inoffensively melodic, with more memorable moments than its predecessor.