CD Review: Eric Van Aro’s “Endless Roads” By Brian Arsenault

The last time I reviewed an album by this guy in early 2014, I complimented his reclaiming stellar jazz singing for the guys in the face of so many fine current female jazz singers.

This time, withEndless Roads, Eric Van Aro has reestablished the stripped down rock/pop sound amidst an avalanche of overdubbed, over-produced, echo chambered, synthetic slop so dominant today. (We won’t name the purveyors as they know who they are; unshaken TV commercials abound for their concert tours; Good Morning America appearances before overexcited pre-teens. You know the drill.)

Eric Van Aro

Eric himself writes that he has “been taught that the musical roads one can and should take are endless . . .” He may need to be careful, though, as the musical world has long since shown an obnoxious need to characterize artists and their art forms, neat little boxes to keep our tastes in without a lot of thought.

Eric, though, can find room for works by Pat Metheny, Laura Nyro, Randy Newman, Jimmy Page/Robert Plant, Bruno Mars and himself in the same album. Really.

Maybe the bravest piece is Mars’ “Just the Way You Are.” Reworking a big hit by a pop giant is to walk on the edge of unacceptable, as the original version is tucked so deeply into our musical consciousness. Singing along with the car radio and such. Eric pulls it off anyway by tipping his hat to the hit while singing it in his raspier, deeper way.

Eric Van Aro

The lesser known Zep piece “Friends” moves effortlessly from bluesy at the start to jazzy at the end.

“This Is Not America” opens the album and sets the rocking tone with Max Elli’s slick rock guitar opening. Elli is a strength throughout the album, weaving in, under and around Van Aro’s vocals as if they had played together for years. In actuality, they seem to have met musically on Endless Roads.

Eric’s artistic generosity means this could almost have been billed as Elli’s album with Eric providing vocals, rather like the long ago days of Jeff Beck with Rod Stewart.

He notes that on this album he “really tried to let the producer in me stay at home and let myself by guided by my producer and my musicians.”

Kudos to Giordano Colombo for his production. As noted, a clean, crisp, basic sound is quite rare in these days of dubbing to the max.

Drummer Giordano Colombo is solid throughout and really breaks out on “Stratus.” If there’s such a thing as rock scat singing, Eric shows it off here.

Nyro’s “And When I Die”, recorded memorably by Blood Sweat & Tears, adds a little country flavor and Randy Newman’s “I Think It’s Going to Rain Today” has just a dash of Van Morrison flavor in Eric’s vocal.

The album closes with Van Aro’s co-written “One Life One Song” and as an earlier song notes: “. . . that’s the way to treat a friend.”

The friend in this case being any listener.

Endless Roads will be released on September 17.

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https://irom.wordpress.com/2015/09/01/cd-review-eric-van-aros-endless-roads/

(c)(p) 2015 The International Review of Music

#ericvanaro #endlessroads #brianarsenault #brunomars #jimmypage #lauranyro #ledzeppelin #patmetheny #randynewman #robertplant

INTERNATIONAL SINGING STAR ERIC VAN ARO DISPLAYS HIS REMARKABLE MUSICAL VERSATILITY ON HIS NEW RECORDING, ENDLESS ROADS

Eric Van Aro’s world-wide array of enthusiastic fans have long been aware of his stylistic versatility, which he serves up with ease, singing in English, Italian, French and German.  In the far-ranging selection of tunes on Endless Roads, he takes his performances up another level, applying his unique musical mastery to everything from rock, jazz and singer/songwriter classics, as well as his own originals.

Van Aro receives solid musical support from drummer Giordano Colombo, who also produced Endless Roads,  and a collection of enthusiastic young European players that includes guitarist Max Elli, bassist Andrea Torresani, and keyboardist Antonio Chindamo.

The results, as with Van Aro’s previous recordings for Eraki, his Switzerland-based label, are irresistibly memorable.

And it’s no surprise that the stunning skillfulness with which Van Aro interprets Endless Roads’ fascinating array of songs has already attracted critical attention.

Reviewer Matthew Forss writes that “Fans of Southern rock, blues, jazz, Americana, roots, folk, and some pop will find a place in their heart for Eric Van Aro’s Endless Roads.  Overall, there are endless possibilities of enjoyment with all of the songs on the album.”

Endless Roads will be released on September 17th  2015

Reviewer Heath Andrews accurately describes Endless Road as “a well-constructed collection of songs that are enchantingly sung and ferociously played.”

Eric Van Aro is the first to insist that his many accomplishments should be considered in the context of his creative heritage.  His mother, Caterina Valente, has been an international singing star since the early fifties, selling more than 18 million recordings worldwide.  His father is Erik Van Aro, Sr., a German juggler and producer.

Endless Roads is yet another example of the expressive versatility that is a primal element in that heritage.  It is also a compelling display of Eric Van Aro’s growing skill at applying that versatility to every area of contemporary music.

– Don Heckman

International Review of Music

Preview the whole album at amazon.com

#ericvanaro #donheckman #internationalreviewofmusic #endlessroads

RICORDI ITALIANI di Eric van Aro

L’altro giorno sono finalmente riuscito a mettere le mani su un libro che cercavo da anni…

“Non ho mica perso la bussola….” Autobiografia di Sergio Bernardini.

L’America aveva Jerry Weintraub (appena scomparso), la Francia aveva il mio padrino Bruno Coquatrix  e l’Italia aveva Sergio Bernardini.

Uomini senza i quali il mondo dello spettacolo di ieri e di oggi sarebbe molto più povero!

Personaggi spinti dal loro coraggio, dalla loro passione e da quel pizzico di follia…. per far sì che in America un Sinatra tornasse sulle scene ed i Led Zeppelin battessero tutti i record di pubblico, che a Parigi l’Olympia diventasse il tempio dello spettacolo confermando le carriere internazionali di personaggi come la Piaf,  Yves Montand, i Beatles, gli Stones, la Minnelli e quanti altri ancora,  insomma che in Italia non ci fosse solo la famosa Bussola, il Bussolotto oppure la Bussola Domani… ma che i più grandi artisti dello spettacolo mondiale venissero a fare delle tournee nel paese delle meraviglie.Lirico
Lo zio Sergio, lui volle che lo chiamassi cosi, me lo ricordo benissimo…. e lo vedo proprio raccontare quanto ha scritto su mamma nel suo libro….. da morir dal ridere…CV-by-BernardiniValente-Bussola

E’ vero… il mondo dello spettacolo italiano non riusciva a capire questa dura disciplina della mamma…. Disciplina d’artista d’avanspettacolo e circense, disciplina che le ha permesso di fare una carriera mondiale e lavorare più di 60 anni non stop ed oggi essere ancora in formissima. Questa incomprensione era una delle ragioni per cui mamma si fece molto… rara per quanto riguardava il lavoro in Italia. Infatti preferiva essere quasi quasi dimenticata per godersi il suo paese, che ama tanto, in tranquillità!

parisi

(C) Corriere della Sera – Italy

Comunque di tanto in tanto ci tornò a lavorare….. come quando Delia Scala e lo Zio Sergio le chiesero di partecipare agli spettacoli “Una rosa per la vita” sotto il tendone della Bussola Domani a favore della ricerca contro il cancro. Per una di quelle serate Mamma interruppe una tournee negli USA, stette 3 giorni a Viareggio per partecipare allo spettacolo per poi riprendere il volo verso New York e continuare subito il tour. Con disciplina si può…..

raimondocrop

Caterina con Raimondo Vianello (Bussoladomani) (c) ERAKI Entertainment

Ricordo anche alla stessa Bussola Domani, un Capodanno nel programma di Gianni Minà con una valanga di artisti italiani….. ma i più bei ricordi risalgono a quando eravamo in Versilia in vacanza…… serate alla Bussola o al Bussolotto con Don Lurio, Maysa la regina della canzone brasiliana e gli amici di sempre, Karin, Giorgio, Cristina, Georgia e Manolo, Vittorio e Paola….  a vedere e sentire  Alighiero Noschese, i Rokes, l’Equipe 84, Patty Pravo (che non gradiva tanto la presenza di mamma tra il pubblico…hahaha.) e tanti altri….

Che bei ricordi italiani…. grazie allo Zio Sergio….

By Eric van Aro © 2015 ERAKI Entertainment

Quincy Jones: Honey, we have no music industry

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Eraki Entertainment:

He is right…. as usual!!!

Originally posted on Fortune:

Before Apple and Taylor Swift and even the Moog synthesizer were born, there was Quincy Jones. Over the last six decades, the legendary composer and former record company exec has amassed 79 Grammy nominations (winning 27 actual awards) and produced hit albums like Michael Jackson’s Thriller. Today, he is involved with several projects. One of his latest? An online music-learning tool called Playground Sessions, which recently kicked off a fundraising campaign via Crowdfunder. But his role as co-creator of the self-proclaimed “Rosetta Stone” of music doesn’t mean he believes the Internet has had a positive affect on the record industry—a topic he remains as opinionated as ever about. Fortune caught up with Jones to ask for his take on new digital music distribution models and why he got involved with Playground Sessions. Read below for an excerpt of the recent conversation.

FORTUNE: Is the music industry better…

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