Mr. MoonJune Recommends - Volume 1
"THE OPEN ROAD"
After the great success of the "MoonJune Compilation: $1 and then $2 min. donation for 60 tunes" promotion launched in November of 2012, I'm now ready to offer another selection of extraordinary sounds.
Over the years I have received more than 1,500 albums from artists all around the world soliciting a CD release, trying to find a proper 'home' for their projects. I've done my best to answer every single solicitation, and to listen to every single album, although I must admit that some of the listening was done in 'fast-forward mode.'
I suggested to some of the artists that they approach other labels that might be more appropriate for their music, or that they self-release their albums, and some, simply I couldn't afford and they are now on bigger labels.
"Mr. MoonJune Recommends - Volume 1" will be the first in a series of 25-track compilations drawn from these submissions plus few tunes from few of my friends, legendary musicians. It features one track from each CD that over the past few years I have wanted, even yearned, to release on MoonJune but couldn't for a variety of reasons: lack of time, the fact that the label can only release a limited number of albums per year, I'm busy on tour with a band, or involved with my other two businesses..
Except for a few musicians who are known to fans of progressive music, most of these artists are only known in their own country or region, and some not even in their own city; however, they are all musicians whom I respect and whose music I dig.
The whole purpose of this compilation is to expose these musicians' recently recorded music to the constantly growing MoonJune audience, and also to pay due respect to their artistry. Each track comes with complete information about the artist and the album from which the tune was selected, and most importantly a direct link to the artists' sites where those albums can be purchased.
"Mr. MoonJune Recommends - Volume 1" features the music of legends, special friends I've known for many years, others I've met and heard on my travels, and artists recommended by knowledgeable peers, whose impressive albums I'm introducing through this compilation, including the following:
- I've traveled worldwide and shared friendship and exceptional live music with Chad Wackerman, Jan Akkerman, the late Elton Dean, Beppe Crovella, and the musicians they've been involved with across the globe, many of whom are featured here.
- Some musicians, such as Beledo, the Uruguayan master guitarist based in NYC, with whom I've been good friends for years.
- Some musicians I've friended on my innumerous travels like Ernesto Holman from Santiago de Chile, and John Sund from Copenhagen or they came to visit me in NYC, like Daniele Cavalca from Claudio Scolari's projects.
- Personal discoveries such as the Swedish "mystery" band Nude Fox Ensemble; a Serbian axeman based in Barcelona, Dusan Jevtovic; and El Trio, a power trio from an unexpected tropical latitude, the Dominican Republic.
- A few fantastic guitarists suggested by my reviewer friends, such as Mustafa Dönmez from Turkey and his band Atmosfer, Michel Sajrawy a Palestinian from Israel, and Mark Wingfield from the UK.
- Two phenomenal UK-based musicians, the Swiss guitarist Nicolas Meier and the Israeli drummer Asaf Sirkis, who were suggested to me by my friend the legendary Bill Bruford.
- I had known of Welsh jazz pianist Geoff Eales, but it was thanks to my longtime friends Roy Babbington (ex-Soft Machine and now with Soft Machine Legacy) and Mark Fletcher (Phil Miller, Elton Dean) that I finally got in touch with Geoff.
- October Equus from Spain and guitar fusionist from Luxembourg Claude Pauly, whom I discovered thanks to the great buzz about them on the Internet.
- Finally, one of my absolutely favorite bands on MoonJune, Marbin. I was instantly enamored of the two stunning, brave Israeli youngsters, guitarist Dani Rabin and saxophonist Danny Markovich, when I saw them perform as a duo in their Chicago base two years ago; they were signed to MoonJune that same night!
All the featured music represents in some way the philosophy of MoonJune Records - progressive music exploring the boundaries of jazz, rock, avant, ethno, and the unknown - and anything in between.
In the world we live in, with its oversaturated music market, rapidly disappearing record stores, and a record business that ignores real musicianship, and with fewer and fewer outlets where quality progressive music can be exposed, it's becoming more and more difficult for artists to be noticed unless they have a well-known legacy or they tour frequently and intensively, which many are unable to do.
This compilation (the first of many) is my tribute to these musicians and contribution to their cause. I hope that all who download and listen to this remarkable music can appreciate the artistry of these musicians and their determination to keep great music alive.
Note that the tunes chosen for this compilation do not necessarily represent the best tracks from the featured CDs; they're purely my personal choice.
(Note: this compilation does not include any artists from Indonesia. Because they deserve a very special chapter of their own, a special 25-track compilation of Indonesian progressive jazz-fusion will be launched in January.)
The whole compilation has over three hrs of music and iis priced at only $1 (or more - whatever you would like to or can afford to pay) for 25 tunes. The tracks are downloadable in any (or all) of the following formats: MP3 320, FLAC, MP3 VBR (V0), AAC, Ogg Vorbis, or ALAC. If that list leaves you scratching your head, you probably want the default, MP3 320, which will play back beautifully in iTunes, Windows Media Player, your iPod, etc.
More info on downloading procedure: bandcamp.com/faq_downloading