Zen Blues Quartet began two and a half years ago as an experiment in "Art for the sake of good Art". We had no expectations, no goals, no ideas that anyone would even hear what we were doing, other then our friends and fellow musicians. We recorded the first CD in one day, with no rehearsal and no plan, just to see what would happen. We did some gigs, sold a bunch of CD's, ended up being reviewed quite well, and a lot of people liked what we did. In fact enough so that we decided we wanted to do another one.
When Mike Finnigan joined us for a few gigs, (when Jeff Young left to go on tour with Steely Dan), it was pretty obvious that he and Tim had a magic quality that really clicks in when they sing together. The sound of the band got really huge when Mike joined, and so we decided it was time to do another CD.
We had always agreed that, should we go along and make another CD, we would introduce more original materials. On the first CD we covered some of our favorite tunes. On this CD we still do some unusual covers, but we also showcase great original music by the band members.
We spent a few days at Westlake Recording, again with the support and encouragement of my good friend Steve Burdick, owner of Westlake. The sound of the band just blossomed, and then when Bill Churchville and the LA horns came on board the whole sound just exploded beautifully!
We actually mixed and mastered the CD back in June before we all went on the road for the summer, but after mastering we were just not convinced that it was the best possible representation of the band, so we decided to delay distribution. We re-mixed and re-mastered and now believe we have made something unique and special. A truly beautiful exploration, both musically and sonically.
It seems to us that people have forgotten that great music is that which call our attention so intently, so passionately, to the moment, to this moment. Blues is powerful music because it is the heart speaking the truth in the moment. These days with computers and sequencing and cut and paste music, the soul of music seems to be eroding. We wanted, as always, to show that musicians in a room, playing powerful and exciting music, can make something unique that shines in ways that a lot of this "paint by numbers" music does not offer. What excited us about music when we all started playing, was musicians on the edge, taking chances and having the dedication and craft that allowed them to do that.
This CD is definitely a labor of love. A love for music that comes from the heart, the soul, for the music of the Blues. We are not trying to re-invent the wheel here, nor sound like what has come before. We are trying to be honest and true to who we all are as individuals and as a collective. In the end run that is really what the Blues is about; being true to the moment, the passion of that truth expressed in powerful music.
"The music on this CD is part of the brief and beautiful flame of my life. Precious and swift is this dream we all share. Music, and the gift of music, binds us in its ineffable call to attend the passion of the moment. I need this "music of the moment", because it risks stumbling, (even though that is not really possible with good music), and in so doing, creates something fragile and powerful, beautiful and fleeting. I am honored that the dream of my life has lead me here to this brief and flickering moment. To play music with my friends, and make something beautiful for no reason, other then simply because we can, because we must! That, for me, is a life well lived. To choose to make something unique and honest and powerful, simply because it needs to exist. Our world needs more senseless acts of beauty.
May all beings be free from the root causes of suffering, Again and yet again may it be so..."
John March 11/29/07
released October 27, 2012
The Musicians and credits:
Mike Finnigan - Hammond B3 Organ, Piano, Vocals
Tim Scott - Bass and Vocals
John March - Guitars, Producer, mix engineer
Steve Ferrone - Drums
Special guests The LA Horns, Featuring; Rev. Dave Boruff - Saxophones, Bill Churchville - Trumpets, Ed Wynne- Saxophones.
Specials Guests; Carmen Grillo - Background Vocals, Curtis Salgado - Blues Harmonica, Marty Grebb - Rhodes Piano
Horn Arrangements by Bill Churchville
Produced, engineered and mixed by John March
Principal recording February 2007 2nd and 3rd at Westlake Recording,
Vocal Overdubs at Big Surprise Music Studio
Keyboard overdubs at High Fidelity studios
Guitar overdubs at IAGstudios.
Mixed at IAGstudios.
Additional engineering credits: Westlake recording: Brian Warwick (Protools Op/Assistant Engineer), Eric Rennaker (Assistant Engineer), Brian Naguit (Assistant Engineer), Sara Clark (Organizational Goddess)
Carmen Grillo and Johnny Lee Schell
Audio consultants: Bruce Nazarian and Jim Baldree, without whom I would not have been able to mix this CD because they came, they listened, and they gave me honest perspective and invaluable support and advice when I was lost in the mixes! Thank You!!
John would like to thank and acknowledge:
Eliot Ivanhoe and Barbra Freidman for their invaluable and unconditional support that allowed me to be able to make this CD, My son Jesse, Deb and Paul and the entire Dempsey clan for love and friendship and great sing-alongs, Cheri Huber for her wisdom and Guidance in all things Zen, Myles Rose for his unflagging generosity and support, Steve Burdick and Westlake recording and for his constant willingness to take risks and support good music, Carmen Grillo and Johnny Lee Schell for their generosity and great studios, Dave Dewolfe and Quantum Wealth Management, and all the musicians on this CD who contributed their time and talents.
Tim would like to thank:
My Creator, family and friends, my co-creator in music and on these CD's and support buddy John, and the great fans of ZBQ.
Acknowledgements: Mesa/Boogie Amps, Spirit Musical Products, Fernandes Guitars, Dean Markley Strings, NADY Systems Ltd, AKG Microphones, Voodoo Lab.
Mixed at IAGstudios September - November 2007
Matered by Robert Vosgien at Capitol Mastering in Hollywood 11/07
Produced and Mixed by John March
Website by John March
CD artwork by D'Lanie Blaze, Leisa Ciaverelli and Jailhouse Graphics.
John March endorses the following products and wishes to thank:
Fuchs Audio Technology
Buzz Feiten Intonation System
Westlake Audio Section-For-Hire
Bruce Nelson at Nelson Guitarwerks
Tim Scott endorses the following products and wishes to thank:
Alfonzo Pinzon at Fernandes Guitars
Tien Lawrence at Mesa/Boogie
David Lienhard at Dean Markley Strings
Mike Perez at Nady Systems, Inc.
Tom Stotler at AKG Acoustics
Josh Fiden at Voodoo Lab
Steve Ferrone endorses the following products and wishes to thank:
Some rights reserved. Please refer to individual track pages for license info.
John March is a professional guitarist/musician, teacher, meditation facilitator, audio craftsman/technologist and
consultant with over 30 years in the Industry. Recent projects include Chord Alchemy, a tribute to Ted Greene, Zen Blues Quartet and Guitar Talk Podcast with John and Jamie....more