Ken's associate producer for his groundbreaking album "Music For Guitar And Orchestra" was a man whom Ken had previously worked with for many years. However this album was a new and multi-faceted challenge which Dan LaMaestra took on with a commitment to excellence. Dan handled the hiring of many of the musicians and coordinating the communication and preparation for the recording sessions with each of them as well as finding just the right recording studio for this special album. In addition, Dan served as the copyist for Ken's music and also as a consultant during the mixing of the music. This podcast episode is full of fascinating stories and behind the scenes details of how a complex orchestral recording of new original music successfully comes together.
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Virtuoso jazz harpist Lori Andrews was one of the first musicians Ken called when he started writing and orchestrating the music for "Music For Guitar And Orchestra". Lori is one of the few true jazz harpists on the planet and she and Ken speak in detail about how Ken used the harp on this new album. They also discussed some of the techniques Lori has created to make jazz music “groove” on a harp and the way she learned to solo on an instrument which is not known for improvisation. This is an amazing insight into the harp and as an added bonus, an incredibly informative journey into how a classically trained harpist becomes a jazz virtuoso.
Ken hangs out with 2 of the virtuoso musicians who played on Ken's new album "Music For Guitar And Orchestra". Dave Perkel (trombone), MaryAnn Perkel (cello) and Ken talk about everything from putting together an amazing custom orchestra for Ken's groundbreaking new music to the differences between performing as part of an orchestra in a concert vs. performing in the recording studio to the specific challenges of playing this emotional and interesting music. Fascinating behind the scenes stuff that you won't find anywhere else.
Ken and his special guest Jay Rowe listen to Ken's groundbreaking album "Music For Guitar And Orchestra" and talk about the music - how it was composed, orchestrated, recorded and much more. This podcast is an excellent way to preview this breakthrough album with some very interesting commentary from Ken and Jay.
Ken has an in depth conversation with keyboardist and composer Bill Laurance. Best known for his three #1 solo albums including his brand new one "Aftersun" as well as numerous Grammy Award winning albums with Snarky Puppy, Bill is currently on tour with Snarky Puppy and spoke with Ken from the road. Music excerpts included in this podcast are Ken Navarro's "The Stars, The Snow, The Fire" from his album "Dreaming of Trains" and Bill Laurance's "Never Ending City", "Swag Times" and "Money In The Desert" from his album "Flint" and "Soti" and "A Blaze" from his latest album "Aftersun". For more information, please visit: billlaurance.com, kennavarro.com
Ken speaks with saxophonist Tony Craddock Jr, a young and gifted musician who has already released two excellent albums including 2014's "Convection" featuring Ken on the composition "1102 Bradfield Hall". Ken and Tony discuss how Tony is successfully making his way in the competitive world of music and smooth jazz as well as the the importance of time management, practice and building a career in music, one brick at a time. Tony and Ken will be performing a special concert together on Feb 14, 2016 in Tysons Corner, Virginia. You can get your tickets here.
Ken previews each song on "Unbreakable Heart", his new album for 2015. He takes the listener on a behind the scenes journey through each song, explaining why and how he composed them and the ways he recorded the guitars and created the arrangements - Monday Podcast Series, episode 8. For more information, please visit: kennavarro.com
Ken has a conversation with keyboardist James Lloyd who released his first solo album this year, after a storied career with with the group he co-founded almost 40 years ago, Pieces of a Dream. James talks about being discovered at the age of 16 by Grover Washington, touring with Grover (including his first tour with a broken hand!), his process for composing and recording and the creative, improvisational way he learned to be an exceptional cook - Monday Podcast Series, episode 7. For more information, please visit: jameslloydmusic.com, kennavarro.com
Elan Trotman moved to Boston, Massachusetts from his home in Barbados to attend the Berklee College of Music. He decided to stay and pursue his musical ambitions in the USA and has since become a sought after and in demand contemporary jazz saxophonist. This was the first time Ken and Elan had spoken and so these two musicians spent some time getting to know one another - Monday Podcast Series, episode 6
Sandy Shore is the founder and president of Smoothjazz.com, the leading smooth and contemporary internet jazz radio station and website. Ken and Sandy have known each other for 20 years and talk about the past and future of contemporary jazz and radio - Monday Podcast Series, episode 5
It's been 12 years since Ken produced Eric Darius's first national album "Night On The Town". They had a lot of catching up to do - Monday Podcast Series, episode 4
Ken discusses making music, the road and the music business with keyboardist Jay Rowe - Monday Podcast Series, episode 3
Ken discusses and shares his process for composing new music - Monday Podcast Series, episode 2
Ken gives advice on how to begin to learn to play the guitar - Monday Podcast Series, episode 1
Ken narrates an audio preview of "Strength" from his new album for January 2015 "Hope, Joy, Strength"
Ken narrates an audio preview of "Joy" from his new album for January 2015 "Hope, Joy, Strength"