I’d like to dedicate this album to all of my drum and percussion students as well as our drum circle and music community here in NY. They’re incredible people. Of course a big thank you to my wife for her unconditional love and support and bandmates Anthony Richards, Mark Rowser and Joe Pauley, who unfortunately because of COVID-19 precautions could not participate on this album.
So, I play Latin Rock, Salsa, Folk, Funk, Jam Band, West African Djembe Ensemble, Rumba, Samba and I attend and lead drum circles. These songs reflect that, as they span many different styles and cultures. Some of the artists that influenced these sounds are: Osibisa, Santana, Fela Kuti, Ebo Taylor, Mamady Keita, Baba Olatunji, Jerry Gonzalez and The Fort Apache Band, Salif Keita, Seu Jeorge, Olodum and Mongo Santamaria—just to name a few. For me, these artists were groundbreaking in creating new ethnic styles of music by blending their traditional or folkloric rhythms and music with modern pop, rock and soul. That is the reason my songs do not "follow the rules" of Salsa, Rumba, Djembe Ensemble or Samba let's say. I wanted to do something different as there are so many great albums by the great music masters, there is no way I can even come close to replicating them. Besides, that is not who I am. I also did not want to create a "drums only" album, as the hope is that this has plenty hand drumming up-front and loud enough to be heard, but also enough melody that a non-drummer can find some enjoyment listening to it.
This project was a direct result of the COVID-19 Pandemic and produced and recorded from July to December 2020. I must mention I have never recorded, produced or mixed anything professionally. On a tight budget with limited equipment, this album was made entirely in Garage Band on Mac Desktop with only two inputs through the Focusrite Scarlet pre-amp and playback with small Mackie CRX Monitors. I recorded all percussion and drums live, except for some castanets and hand claps, with a Shure SM57 or a Sennheiser Condenser microphone. The melodies such as horns, guitars, flutes and keyboards are all digital samples or purchased live sounds and songs were built in Garage Band with tedious splicing and editing. On a sound quality level, it is what it is and it's the best I could do. By all means, in the future, we welcome producers to help us and we welcome your venture capital (LOL). Any record labels reading this?
Hopefully this music is the catalyst for starting more recording sessions with like-minded people, but before that happens, our full band World Beat Groove will be working on our first album in 2021 and that is gonna be hot!
Stay tuned and thanks for your support.
Peace and Love,