A few months ago I recorded a beautiful jazz album featuring some of NY’s top jazz musicians (saxophonist Vincent Herring, Saturday Night Live trombonist Steve Turre, pianist Anthony Wonsey, vocalist Paulette McWilliams and more) and incredibly charming and gorgeously performed music with lyrics written by Wyland, an amazing environmentally-driven American painter and visual artist whose humongous and larger than life art you probably saw at least once in your life somewhere in the US.
As a Hawaii resident and lover of the sea, Wyland has always been extremely dedicated to the conservation of the aquatic fauna (the subject of his art), so he decided to explore and reach out to different types of arts to promote global awareness. As an environmentally-conscious person myself (not to mention avid kitesurfer and lover of the sea), I felt absolutely honored and privileged to work on this magnificent album and I can’t wait to hear it and see it (I hear the artwork is amazing, which is pretty obvious and expected at this point, isn’t it?).
The album just was announced a few days ago and is available on the Home Shopping Network and in selected stores. You can preview some tracks excerpts here: http://www.wylandstudiostore.com/index.cfm?ProductID=2274&do=detail
Here is the official press release:
Debut Release From Wyland Records
New Jazz CD Gets in the Swing of Conservation
NEW YORK, NY — Renowned marine life artist Wyland has assembled the brightest jazz talents in New York City to create, “Rhythms of the Sea,” a new collection of “eco-conscious” music set to the artist’s
The 13-song CD album (Wyland Records — $15.95) is a unique extension of the artist’s mission to bring
awareness through art and is dedicated to inspiring conservation through music. Rhythms of the Sea, was
recorded in New York City with saxophonist Vincent Herring, Saturday Night Live trombonist Steve Turre, pianist Anthony Wonsey, vocalist Paulette McWilliams performing as the Earth Jazz Agents.
“With this debut music project, Wyland’s goal is clear as the turquoise water of a South Pacific island,” says said Laurence
Donohue-Greene, managing editor of AllAboutJazz-New York.
“We can only hope that future collaborations between marine life and earthbound musicians continue along these paths.”
“Rhythms of the Sea” was arranged and produced by Herring, who called upon other collaborators, including as trumpeter Jeremy Pelt, pianist/keyboardist Nat Adderley, Jr., cellist Akua Dixon, and two-time Grammy Award winning engineer Marc Urselli. Noted for his fine Cannonball Adderley-inspired alto work, Herring also performs on soprano sax and flute From “Flow”, “Sacred Seas”, and “Ocean Paradise” to “Turtle Time”, “Rhythms of the Sea”, “Ocean of Light” and “Endangered Species”, vocalist Paulette McWilliams connects Wyland’s environmentally-conscious thoughts and words into song. Wyland himself composed lyrics for six of the seven songs that McWilliams sings and even makes a brief cameo on “Endangered Species” by adding spoken word over the backing vocals of Andromeda Turre’s repeated refrain of “Protect our Planet.”
Turre bridges the worlds further with his musical mastery of the conch shell. His composition “Flying Fish” is a celebratory number, from Herring’s high-spirited alto lines leading to trumpeter Jeremy Pelt’s Hugh Masakela-influenced smears, blasts and bent notes, trombonist Turre and Wonsey’s soulful upbeat piano.
“Whale Song” pairs composer Turre’s overdubbed conches and Dixon’s arco-played cello with the as-credited “backing vocals” of a recording by the humpback whales of the Silver Bank.
“Rhythms of the Sea” is available at www.wyland.com
About the Artist
One of the world’s most recognizable artists, Wyland has developed an international reputation for his commitment to marine life conservation, most notably his monumental marine life murals, the Whaling Walls. He is considered one of the most successful working artists today, with galleries throughout the United States, and more than half a million collectors around the world. Each of his works speaks of our beautiful but fragile marine ecosystem. Dedicated to saving our water resources through art and education, his non-profit Wyland Foundation seeks to further that end.