We have confirmation that "Vertical Voices" will arrive today. We've finished a sweet new documentary-style video about the CD that I'll post tomorrow in celebration of the release. For today, here are the three videos we've posted during the launch and creation of the CD...
Highlights from the comments of these videos, to date:
---Just as well I pursued a career other than music. These guys are depressing. How can one measure up to that? At the very least, being able to contribute to these artists' efforts feels like an extremely worthwhile cause. Kerry Marsh's work is the most amazing revelation I've had on YouTube to date.
---This was a great intro by Maria Schneider. Wow, you guys are going to take over the world, musically that is. I believe it. You two are amazing!
---Wow. I love Maria Schneider, and Kerry and Julia sound FANTASTIC! Wow!
---What's the name of the track playing at the beginng? I'm new to her music, and that is just amazingly beautiful
---I can't wait to experience the whole project. Singers Unlimited on steroids.
---The original compositions of Miss Schneider stand on their own but with this wonderful vocal musical collaboration with Julia & Kerry covering all the horns and strings it has new wings. They're singing is angelic and edgy and cutting edge and improvisationally magnificent. Grammy time!!!!! Any questions!!! I think NOT.
---Thats gonna be one epic CD
---Normally I can't stand scat signing, but you guys sound really good doing it!
TWO DAYS until Vertical Voices launches. Julia and I will be performing at Sac State on the release day, Tuesday at 8pm, with Jazz Singers and C-Sus opening the show. All about yesterday below, but here's the VOTD...Maria Schneider's "Pas de Deux," in honor of my little countdown thing, and, of course, in honor of the best composer on the planet...
Julia and I presented a clinic about our project at the California Music Educators Association conference yesterday. We sang "Sky Blue" and "Hang Gliding" in our 9am clinic (!) and talked about the project a bit. Attendance at the conference seems to be down, in general, certainly due, in part, to the recession, so the room wasn't packed, but we got a great vibe from the 25 or so people who made it. It was the first time for us to use the new computer setup in a live situation, and it didn't go off entirely without a hitch, as the tracks for "Sky Blue" cut out for a full second RIGHT at the climax of the piece...but we both sang the music about as well as we've ever done it live. We hadn't gotten much sleep, as we've been working furiously on last minute major items for the CD release. You'll surely see the products of that on Tuesday.
At 11:45, The CMEA High School All-State Vocal Jazz Ensemble performed. under the direction of our great friend and colleague Greg Jasperse. The all-staters were absolutely dynamite this year! They're always great, of course, but it seems that this year's combination of elements just gelled extraordinarily well. I hope even more California directors will encourage their students to submit auditions next year, because the level of the group's performance this year was extraordinary.
Greg's programming was very strong with this set: the group sang his "VoiceDance IV" and "Fields of Gold," Rosana Eckert's "Afro Blue" and "Virou Areia," Darmon Meader's "Charleston Alley" and Jennifer Barnes/Mervyn Warren's arrangement of "Confide in Me." The amazing Christine Guter, director of one of the very top vocal jazz programs in the nation at CSU Long Beach, was the coordinator of the all-state group, in association with the California Alliance for Jazz.
I had a great time meeting all of the students in the ensembles, who were clearly on a high from their experience over the past few days. It was also really great to meet Daniel Vu, the talented director of Orange Lutheran High School in SoCal, who had five students in the all-state group. Finally, Julia and I enjoyed reconnecting with Holly Shaw-Slabbinck and her dad...some guy named Kirby. You may have heard of him.
After a beautiful day reconnecting and sharing our project, we headed home and worked furiously on the CD release stuff. More about that on Tuesday. :)
I missed the four day mark in the countdown to the release of our CD, which may give you an idea of how busy things are around here. It doesn't really take long to post a blog entry (I started this one 20 second ago), and I don't absolutely have to have a video of the day...but it didn't take long to find "Three Is a Magic Number" from Schoolhouse Rock by Bob Dorough, a sentimental favorite.
But I'm still running...Julia and I are performing our live Maria stuff for the first time in the new technical configuration, and we're doing it at the California Music Educators Association in downtown Sacramento this morning at 9am. The CDs still haven't arrived yet, so we're absolutely counting on them showing up Monday...they just have to, period. Pretty intense right now in a lot of ways.
I'll be posting a major announcement here and on Facebook on Tuesday, along with the CD release celebration message and a mass email that will go out to everyone we know. New promo vids for the CD, a press release, and much more to come. It's just a huge time in our lives right now. Gotta run!
And here to help us celebrate...Take 6!
Go to www.VerticalVoices.us to pre-order either your Limited Edition CD ($18.95) or the High Quality mp3 download offer ($12.95) to get the album as soon as possible!