Robby Steinhardt and Solar Studios announce Robby’s first and only solo recording, Not in Kansas Anymore. Release date: October 25th, 2021.
You know him as the legendary violinist, vocalist, and frontman for the band KANSAS, recording 9 albums that reached gold, platinum, and double platinum status, and is now making another mark on the world with his first and only solo album.
The new album, Not in Kansas Anymore is a powerful, well-thought-out offering of Prog Rock magic. Timely songs with incredible arrangements and virtuoso performances. Robby’s vocals and signature electric violin come through on this continuous work labeled a “Prog Opera”.
In his only interview for the project, he spoke with Bill Shafer of PBS. Steinhardt was asked what the meaning behind the title Not in Kansas Anymore was. Steinhardt responded, “It’s not slight against the band, no never! My time with Kansas defined a big part of my life, of which I am very proud of. Ever since The Wizard of OZ, those words have become an American axiom for moving forward, you can never go back etc.” Robby laughed, “I guess it has a special meaning when it is fixed to me.”
The album, produced by Michael Thomas Franklin, is his latest production since the highly acclaimed Jon Anderson 1000 Hands Chapter One. Franklin used a similar approach using a large cast of renowned musicians to lend their talents. Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull, Steve Morse of Deep Purple/Dixie Dregs, Billy Cobham of Mahavishnu Orchestra, Bobby Kimball of Toto, Chuck Leavell of The Rolling Stones, Liberty Devitto (Drummer on Billy Joel’s hits), Jim Gentry, Pat Travers, Billy Ashbaugh (Moody Blues/Pat Benatar), Lisa Fischer (longtime vocalist for The Rolling Stones), 1000 Hands members Michael Franklin, Tommy Calton, Tim Franklin, Jocelyn Hsu, Rayford Griffin and Benoit Lajeunesse and many others including Orchestra and Choir.
The songs provide powerful lyrics, hard to forget choruses, combined with crafty playing. All this combined with Franklin’s lavish and complicated arrangements makes listening toNot in Kansas Anymore a wonderful hour well spent. The stunning album artwork created by Tom Lupo of Magnificent Pictures and subliminal song quotes from the Wizard of OZ are another added feature to this complex Prog Opera. Currently, four videos are in the works.
Robby was a big fan of local vinyl vendors. Here is where you will be able can to find LPs and CDs locally www.solarmusic.com/
Bill Shafer Growing Bolder at PBS Growing Bolder episode featuring Robby in 2018 before he started the project can be found here: https://growingbolder.com/stories/robby-steinhardts-unlikely-incredible-journey/
Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy & Randy George recently announced their return to the Cover To Cover series of albums with ‘Cov3r To Cov3r’, the brand new third instalment. Featuring their renditions of classic tracks by the likes of King Crimson, Jethro Tull, Gerry Rafferty, David Bowie & more (including their cover of ‘No Opportunity Necessary, No Experience Needed’ featuring vocals from Yes singer Jon Davison), the album will be released on July 24th, as CD, Gatefold 2LP + CD & as Digital Album.
Today they are pleased to reveal a video for their cover of ‘Baker Street’, originally by Gerry Rafferty, and you can watch it now here:
Randy George comments: “Baker Street’ is one of the songs that is instantly recognizable. When I first mentioned the idea of doing ‘Baker Street,’ Neal said that it was funny because he and Mike had just been discussing that one as well.“
Neal Morse adds: “To be honest I was never that big of a fan of this song. It’s one that Mike really wanted to do as I recall. But as we dove into it and I began singing it, I really felt it. Lyrics about thinking that it’s going to be really easy to succeed and then hitting walls and becoming disillusioned are very relatable to me. I found myself really digging into it and taking a kind of “The Who” approach to the song really works well!”
As well as this, the ‘Cover To Cover Anthology (Vol. 1 – 3)’ will be released on the same day, collecting all 3 installments together over 3 discs. The first two albums have also been newly re-sequenced and remastered, and will also be available on all digital services. All the albums have also been given brand new artwork, created by Thomas Ewerhard (Sons of Apollo, The Neal Morse Band, Avantasia).
1.Where The Streets Have No Name (U2) 2.I’m The Man (Joe Jackson) 3.What Is Life? (George Harrison) 4.Badge (Cream) 4.Maybe I’m Amazed (Paul McCartney) 5.Day After Day (Badfinger) 6.Pleasant Valley Sunday (The Monkees) 7.Tuesday Afternoon (The Moody Blues) 8.Can’t Find My Way Home (Blind Faith) 9.I’m Free / Sparks (The Who) 10.Where Do The Children Play (Cat Stevens) 11.Feelin’ Stronger Everyday (Chicago) 12.Rock N Roll Suicide (David Bowie)
CD 2 (Cover 2 Cover):
1.(What’s So Funny About) Peace, Love & Understanding (Elvis Costello) 2.Lido Shuffle (Boz Scaggs) 3.Crazy Horses (The Osmonds) 4.Driven To Tears (The Police) 5.Come Sail Away (Styx) 6.Rikki Don’t Lose That Number (Steely Dan) 7.Lemons Never Forget (The Bee Gees) 8.The Letter (Joe Cocker) 9.I Saw The Light (Todd Rundgren) 10.Teacher (Jethro Tull) 11.Southern Man/Needle And The Damage Done/Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young) 12.Starless (King Crimson)
CD 3 (Cov3r To Cov3r):
1.No Opportunity Necessary, No Experience Needed (Yes) 2.Hymn 43 (Jethro Tull) 3.Life On Mars (David Bowie) 4.Baker Street (Gerry Rafferty) 5.It Don’t Come Easy (Ringo Starr) 6.Baby Blue (Badfinger) 7.One More Red Nightmare (King Crimson) 8.Black Coffee In Bed (Squeeze) 9.Tempted (Squeeze) 10.Runnin’ Down A Dream (Tom Petty) 11.Let Love Rule (Lenny Kravitz)
Morse, Portnoy & George first worked together on Neal Morse’s Testimony Live project back in 2003, and since then they have devised and recorded countless Neal Morse albums, including three with The Neal Morse Band.
The three friends have also released music as Morse, Portnoy & George: so far, two Cover to Cover albums have been produced, each being a collection of covers of their favorite songs. As Portnoy explains: “One of the first things myself, Neal and Randy usually start talking about what we can cover when we gather for one of Neal’s solo albums, should we have some leftover time at the end of the session. Most of the songs are rooted in the 60s and 70s and are songs / bands we grew up with.” Explains George, “We all share an attachment for this era of music, so we each throw out song ideas, see what sticks, and record the ones we like the most!”
The trio has covered songs from such greats as, Paul McCartney, Cream, The Who, Jethro Tull, Steely Dan, and many more. They also have also covered some prog classics from the likes of King Crimson and Yes.
Blood Like Red is the 3rd track from the 2014 Music From An Expanded Universe album. The video features Leon Alvarado on Keyboards and Drums. Trey Gunn (King Crimson, The Security Project) on Warr Guitar and Bass and Jerry Marotta (Peter Gabriel, Hall & Oates) on Taos Drums percussion. Produced by Leon Alvarado, Engineered by Leon Alvarado, Trey Gunn and Mastered by Andy Jackson
For years I had wanted to add visuals to what it is one of my favorite pieces from my music. Leon Alvarado
Leon Alvarado is Texas-based prog drummer, keyboardist, composer, and illustrator, Alvarado has recorded with many talented musicians including Bill Bruford (Gong, Yes, Genesis, Earthworks), John Goodsall (Brand X, Fire Merchants), Trey Gunn (King Crimson), Jerry Marotta (Peter Gabriel, Hall & Oates, Paul McCartney), Billy Sherwood (Yes, Asia), Rick Wakeman and Tony Levin.
On the graphics front I have done album covers and touring materials for bands such as Brand X, Genesis, Phil Collins, Jethro Tull, Jeff Beck, Peter Gabriel, Roger Waters, The Australian Pink Floyd Show, and King’s X.
A Critics Point of View
This is not one of those balls-to-walls prog-rock affairs. For instance on “Blood Like Red,” the artists execute a slowly moving and budding rock pulse, steered by Gunn’s prominent bass lines, in support of the leader’s polytonal voicings, sounding somewhere in between a mellotron and synth strings type soundscape. Moreover, Alvarado layers a tabla vibe to incorporate a world music background into the mix, followed by Gunn’s stinging and crunchy Warr guitar notes. All About Jazz
“Blood Like Red” starts and ends with atmospheric wind effects with the middle brimming with Alvarado’s spacier synth exploits and Gunn’s textural Warr guitar crunch. It is here the band really gets into a full but subtle groove. Jon Neudorf – Sea of Tranquility
The Night of the Prog festival is showcased at The Loreley Amphitheater is a UNESCO World Heritage and holds legendary ROCKPALAST shows in the 70s and 80s. On the hill of the River Rhine, it is located between Frankfurt and Cologne in Germany. Since 2006 the Night of the Prog Festival is happening at the legendary rock.
Featured bands and artists over the last years were: Dream Theater, Eloy, IQ, Riverside, Jethro Tull, Asia, Anathema, Steven Wilson, Spock’s Beard, Arena, Pendragon, Tangerine Dream, Fish, Steve Hackett, Marillion and many more.
VOYAGER IV will perform Sunday, 19th July at Night of the Prog 2020 promoting their current release Pictures at an Exhibition
The classic piano-cycle “Pictures At An Exhibition” by Modest Mussorgsky from 1874 was only the start of an exciting musical journey. VOYAGER IV then just stop along the way at 70ies supergroup ELP (Emerson, Lake & Palmer), who reworked three of Mussorgsky’s “pictures” for their album “Pictures At An Exhibition” back in 1971.
Arriving in the 21st century, those three and further five of the “pictures” can be found on VOYAGER IV’s most recent album and live shows, reworked with vocals and virtuous instrumentation. London based producer Jon Caffrey is responsible for the fresh sound design.
They have a stunning light show, special and rarely seen instruments and they create a mix of cosmic space rock sounds and vocal arrangements plus instrumental passages. VOYAGER IV is one of the most exciting cross-over projects within the prog genre. Singer and songwriter Johannes Kuchta also has a stunning voice, that reminds fans of Peter Gabriel, Greg Lake, Phil Collins or Fish.
“Really enjoyed the new album! Some very bold and adventurous avenues taken with Modest Mussorgsky. I always enjoy listening to someone’s interpretations of otherwise well-known themes. I like that fact that you incorporated those ideas in your own way and varied them enough to make it your own. Well done!”
Marc Bonilla (recorded 4 albums with Keith Emerson)
4CD/2DVD Collection Expands The Legendary Group’s 1979 Album With Steven Wilson’s Newly Remixed Version Of The Original, Plus Studio Outtakes, An Entire Unreleased Concert Recorded In 1980, And More!
LOS ANGELES – Jethro Tull released Stormwatch in September 1979, completing a folk-rock trilogy the band started with Songs from the Wood in 1977 and continued the following year with Heavy Horses. Certified gold in the U.S., Stormwatch was also the final album to feature the classic late-1970s Jethro Tull lineup, which included Ian Anderson, Martin Barre, John Glascock, John Evan, David (now Dee) Palmer, and Barriemore Barlow.
To celebrate the album’s upcoming anniversary, Rhino will release STORMWATCH: 40th ANNIVERSARY FORCE 10 EDITION. This new 4CD/2DVD set will be available on October 11.
Highlights include: – Original album and associated recordings newly remixed by Steven Wilson – Full concert from the Netherlands recorded in March 1980 – Original album and 13 associated recordings mixed to 5.1 DTS and AC3 Dolby Digital – Flat transfer of the original 1979 mix at 96/24 LPCM stereo – 15 associated recordings mixed to 96/24 LPCM stereo and five original mixes at 96/24 LPCM stereo – Presented in a case-bound DVD book filled with an extensive history of the album, track-by-track annotations by Anderson and Palmer, rare photographs and more
The recording sessions for Stormwatch stretched from August 1978 to July 1979 as the album’s ecological and maritime themes slowly came into focus on songs like “North Sea Oil” and “Flying Dutchman.” The band recorded several tracks that were left off the album because they didn’t fit the theme. Many of those can be found on the second disc of this set, including “Man Of God,” “Crossword,” “Kelpie” and “The Lyricon Blues.” In addition to those outtakes, the disc also features early versions of the album tracks “Dark Ages” and “Dun Ringill.”
STORMWATCH: 40th ANNIVERSARY FORCE 10 EDITION also includes a previously unreleased recording of Jethro Tull’s concert at Congreßgebouw in the Netherlands on March 16, 1980. The career-spanning performance mixed new Stormwatch tracks (“Something’s On The Move,” “Home” and “Elegy”) with older hits, like “Locomotive Breath,” “Aqualung,” “Thick As A Brick” and “Minstrel In The Gallery.”
STORMWATCH: 40th ANNIVERSARY FORCE 10 EDITION concludes with two audio-only DVDs that feature various mixes of the original album along with the associated recordings featured in this set.
Stormwatch marked the end of an era for Jethro Tull. Due to his deteriorating health, bassist John Glascock missed most of the sessions for the album and only appears on three of its songs (“Flying Dutchman,” “Orion” and “Elegy.”) Tragically, Glascock died shortly after the album was released. The lineup changed even more following the tour to promote the album as Barlow, Evan and Palmer left the group.
Disc Four: Live in the Netherlands (March 16. 1980) [Previously Unreleased]
1. Flute Solo (incl. “Bourée/Soirée/God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/Kelpie”) 2. Keyboard Duet (Bach’s Prelude in Cm from the “Well-Tempered Clavier 1”) 3. “Songs From The Wood” 4. “Hunting Girl” 5. “Jams O’Donnel’s Jigs” 6. “Thick As A Brick” 7. “Too Old To Rock ’n’ Roll: Too Young To Die!” 8. “Cross-Eyed Mary” 9. Guitar Solo 10. “Minstrel In The Gallery” 11. “Locomotive Breath” 12. “Dambusters March”
DVD One: Audio Only
– Stormwatch mixed to 5.1 DTS and AC3 Dolby Digital – Flat transfer of the original 1979 mix at 96/24 LPCM stereo
DVD Two: Audio Only
– Contains 13 associated recordings mixed to 5.1 DTS and AC3 Dolby Digital – 15 associated recordings mixed to 96/24 LPCM stereo – Five original mixes at 96/24 LPCM stereo
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