Jason Becker’s story is one of brilliance, talent, determination, adversity, and, ultimately, triumph. A child prodigy on guitar, Jason rose to prominence as a teenager when he was one half of the legendary rock guitar duo Cacophony (with his great friend Marty Friedman).
After wowing audiences all over the world with his amazing guitar chops and deep compositions, Jason got a gig with David Lee Roth, following in the huge footsteps of Eddie Van Halen and Steve Vai. He wrote and recorded the DLR album A Little Ain’t Enough and was poised to take over the rock guitar world when a nagging pain in his leg was diagnosed as ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease, a debilitating and fatal condition with a life expectancy of maybe five years.
That was 29 years ago.
Today Jason’s busier and more prolific than ever, as evidenced by Triumphant Hearts. Many of the guitar parts are performed by a who’s-who of 6-string gods including Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Neal Schon, Steve Morse, Paul Gilbert, Joe Bonamassa, and many others. And, in what will absolutely delight his fans, Jason’s amazing guitar playing—recorded in the ’80s and ’90s—graces several tunes.
Triumphant Hearts will be released worldwide on CD, double vinyl and digital.
The double vinyl includes a code for a complimentary MP3 download of the album.
Free poster with every pre-order from the Official MLG store!
Official video for Valley Of Fire featuring guest performances by Michael Lee Firkins, Steve Vai, Joe Bonamassa, Paul Gilbert, Neal Schon, Mattias IA Eklundh, Marty Friedman, Greg Howe, Jeff Loomis, Richie Kotzen, Gus G., Steve Hunter and Ben Woods.
Joe Frazier – Round 3 smokes because the players are smoking. They took a wonderful piece of music and lit a fuse under it! – Jeff Berlin
Nashville – Legendary bassist Jeff Berlin will be releasing on May 11th a 30th Anniversary Edition 12-inch vinyl of his signature song “Joe Frazier.” The EP “Joe Frazier – Round 3” will include a newly remastered version of the original song from his critically acclaimed 1987 album “Pump It!” and a completely re-imagined version, composed and performed by Jeff, Steve Vai (lead guitar), David Sancious (keys), Keith Carlock (drums) and Tom Hemby (rhythm guitar). This limited-edition EP will be available as signed audiophile vinyl, signed CD, or digital release, with collector’s editions including an autographed chart of the new arrangement. Digital “mix minus” tracks of the single will also be offered so you can play along with these iconic musicians.
Says Jeff, “’Joe Frazier’ is a song that has remained with me throughout my career. No matter where I am in the world, people ask to hear this song. 2017 marks the 30th anniversary of the rendition that I recorded on my second solo record, ‘Pump It!’ While chatting about the tune with producer John McCracken, we thought to come up with a new version, calling it ‘Joe Frazier – Round 3.’ For me, this new song is almost entirely different from the previous two renditions and, quite honestly, I think that this is one of the best tunes I ever wrote.”
Bass and Keyboards: Jeff Berlin
Guitar Solo: Steve Vai
Additional Keyboards: David Sancious
Drums: Keith Carlock
Rhythm Guitars: Tom Hemby
Shakers: Gabriela Sinagra
Says Jeff, “Steve Vai’s guitar solo was searing. He showed why he is one of the greatest of the great guitarists in the world. David Sancious’ keyboards put color and style into JF. The man is a legend and helped to put the ‘orchestra’ into ‘Joe Frazier.’ Keith Carlock’s drumming is like a train clicking down the tracks. He instantly grabbed the quarter note and never let it go for over seven minutes of musical percolating. Tom Hemby is one of Nashville’s top studio guitarists. But on ‘Joe Frazier,’ he sounded like the guitarist for James Brown and AC/DC.”
Produced by: John McCracken for Headstrong Media Group
Engineered and Mixed by: John McCracken @ Studio 225 Brentwood, TN
Drums Recorded at: Velvet Cinema Studio, Franklin, TN
Mastered by: Randy Merrill @ Sterling Sound, NYC
Markbass “Jeff Berlin” and “Players School” bass cabinets
Cort Rithimic bass
Babicz Bass Bridge
DR Bass Strings
I. The Collector’s Package
1. Signed 180g audiophile 12” vinyl EP with a newly remastered version of the original (“Joe Frazier – Round 2”) and a completely re-imagined version (“Joe Frazier – Round 3”) written and performed by Jeff and an all-star group: Steve Vai (guitar), Keith Carlock (drums), David Sancious (keys), and Tom Hemby (rhythm guitar)
2. Signed CD of both songs, and
3. A signed and dated print of the full score for “Joe Frazier – Round 3”
All of Jeff’s signatures will be original!
Available July 2018 (pre-order bonus!!: digital bundle sent to you FREE on May 11, 2018)
$39.95 + shipping and handling. International shipping available
II. “Joe Frazier” 30th-Anniversary Edition CD
This signed, special-edition CD will include a newly remastered version of “Joe Frazier – Round 2” and the all new “Joe Frazier – Round 3”
$14.95 + shipping and handling. International shipping available
III. “Joe Frazier” 30th-Anniversary Digital Bundle
This packed special-edition digital bundle will include:
1. the newly remastered “Joe Frazier – Round 2”
2. the brand new “Joe Frazier – Round 3”
3. an extra bonus track: the original “Joe Frazier – Round 2” demo
4. a digital download of the full “Joe Frazier – Round 3” score
IV. “Joe Frazier – Round 3” “Music Minus One” Alternate Mix Bundle
This interactive “Music Minus One” digital bundle will include alternate mixes of “Joe Frazier – Round 3” that allow you to play along with Jeff Berlin, Steve Vai, Keith Carlock, David Sancious, and Tom Hemby. This bundle includes the full digital score and 4 alternate mixes:
1) Minus drums
2) Minus bass
3) Minus guitars
4) Minus bass solos and guitar solos
Each of these “Music Minus” mixes is available for individual purchase ($4.99) and will also include the full digital score along with the alternate mix.
The newest album of Inside The Sound (Ukraine) – a project of guitarist and composer Max Velychko (also appeared in Karfagen, Sunchild, Hoggwash, Modern Rock Ensemble) – contain tracks that were composed through the years, and now, after 6 years of silence we are proud to release this album. It sounds a more like prog-melodic- instrumental with wide range of deep guitar works and keyboards palettes based on groovy and powerfull rhytm section. If you’re a fan of Liquid Tension, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai etc – you’ll difenitely like this record.
Each of 11 tracks of this album has its own story and mood – from power and energy of “Wizard’s Eyes” and ” Dreaming Deja Vue”, through a deep and emotional “Horizon”, “Fantasia” and a bit of vedic and phylosophic “Haribol” – to absolutely “flying” “To The Sky” and intimate-feeling “The Cold Spring”. We invite you to take part in our musical journey Inside The Sound, and to be a part of our music stories!
Steve Vai’s Favored Nations Entertainment in association with MGP Records and MoonJune Music is releasing the new studio album Infinity by UK based Swiss-born guitarist NICOLAS MEIER featuring JIMMY HASLIP and VINNIE COLAIUTA
It is rare to come across a musician whose vision for his instrument is so vastly expansive as that of Swiss-born Nicolas Meier. Even rarer still is finding a level of creative brilliance, precision and an almost reverential sensitivity — delivered with conviction and authority, no less! — in so many distinctly different musical settings … but here’s your proof!
The a bum Infinity is, at its core, a trio outing; supported by the sublime efforts of legendary LA studio veterans, bassist Jimmy Haslip, and drummer Vinnie Colaiuta. They provide a corporate foundation that never lacks in flow or imagination, providing the perfect compliment to a delightfully divergent musical bill of fare.
The Favored Nations debut of this fabulous UK-based axeman — whose support work behind Jeff Beck has already garnered him considerable fame and abiding respect among guitar afficiandos across the globe — features eleven songs showcasing Nicolas’ chameleon-like adaptability (as a player and composer), as his pristine sonic exploits defy stylistic bounds and transport listeners. Whether he’s the spy sprinting through a Middle Eastern bizarre, a chilled morning breeze winding through the Alps, or the 6-string acrobatic, dancing madly with abandon a couple hundred feet up, Meier provides compelling, convincing evidence that he’s one of today’s most accomplished and visionary guitarists.
For fans of ambitious guitar adventures, there’s plenty to sink your ears into, here!
Available directly from Nicolas Meier’s website: http://www.meiergroup.com
Or available via Favored Nations in stores and online:
In just a few short years, UK-based guitarist Nicolas Meier has carved a reputation out as one of the UK’s most original and uniquely talented guitarists. Drawing from a love of Turkish, Eastern & Middle Eastern music, Flamenco, Tango and more — all mixed with jazz — Meier is one of the rising stars in a vibrant British jazz scene, but his versatility and musical fluency extends well beyond that … so much so, that his considerable talents drew the attention of rock guitar legend, Jeff Beck, who has since made Nicolas a mainstay in The Jeff Beck Group, carrying him on two world tours during the course of the last several years.
Meier originally hails from Switzerland; born in 1973 to parents who are great lovers of the arts, with wide-ranging musical tastes extending to the Classical, Jazz, Latin, Flamenco, Rock and (even) Pop genres. After picking up guitar at the age of 12, it was his father’s gift of Joe Satriani’s legendary “Surfing with the Alien” and Tony MacAlpine’s “Maximum Security” (both, major intelligent rock “guitar-god” albums), shortly thereafter, that served as Nicolas’ earliest motivation. Attending the Montreux Jazz Festival while still a young teen would further expand Nicolas’ vision for guitar, with John McLaughlin, in particular, being of particular interest and inspiration.
A true gypsy spirit with a disciplined maestro’s touch, Nicolas has embraced a number of different cultures and studied their music forms, nuances and idiosyncrasies. (It was during his Eurasia travels, early in the new millennium, that Nicolas met his Turkish wife, Songul.) Meier’s sound is rooted in his love of playing jazz on acoustic guitar, especially his Godin nylon-string guitar. It’s a sound that lends itself especially well to flamenco and middle-eastern music, also — conveniently — as these influences, and more, are brilliantly fused in his unique multi-lingual style. He also plays fretless acoustic guitar, the Saz (a traditional Turkish stringed instrument), electric guitar, steel-string acoustic guitar, glissentar (an 11-stringed fretless insturment) and a baglama.
During the course of his six-string baptism and global sojourns, Nicolas has been the recipient of numerous awards. A truly dedicated student of the instrument, he has pursued advanced studies at Switzerland’s prestigious Conservatoire de Fribourg, and studied arranging, prior to earning a scholarship to Boston’s illustrious Berklee College of Music. His burning passion for both rock and jazz persists to this day, something he partly credits to his teacher, Francis Coletta (at the Conservatoire de Fribourg), who, while inspiring a profound love of jazz and world music, encouraged the young man to transcribe rock solos, as well!
In fact, Meier is one of the rare musicians who plays both metal and jazz fluently, and has written books on both: “Heavy Metal, Part I: Rhythm Guitar,” and; “Jazz, Part I: Chord Tones.” When asked about his two seemingly divergent loves, Nicolas had this to say: “I deeply love both styles. There is magic in each style that the other one doesn’t have. I just love metal’s power and energy, and at the same time I love jazz’s deep emotion. Both styles can give high energy, but in different directions or different worlds.”
During his time at Berklee, Nicolas immersed himself in classic American jazz (Parker; Coltrane; Miles; etc.), while performing primarily acoustic jazz and fusion. After graduation, he returned to Switzerland in 1998 and formed the Meier Group, a band that would quickly become popular European festival regulars. Naturally, he gravitated to Montreux, finding himself performing with the likes of Rachelle Ferrel, George Duke, Macy Gray and Will Calhoun, among others.
It wasn’t long, though, before Meier found himself missing the vibrance and vitality of Boston. After considering possible relocations, he settled on London as the perfect destination for combining the energy of the US with a happening European music scene. Shortly after arriving in London, Nicolas met drummer Asaf Sirkis, whom he credits with helping open his ears to Middle Eastern music, as well as helping him find his feet in London. “He (Asaf) is such a passionate player that I just had to keep playing with him whenever I could. I met Gilad Atzmon through him, and many other great players.”
Never short on ambition, Meier founded his own record label, MGP Records, in 2009. To date, he has produced ten albums: as a solo artist; in various group formats (The Meier Group; Nicolas Meier Trio; Eclectica!); with his progressive metal band, Seven7, and; in a duo format, with UK jazz maestro guitarist, Pete Oxley. (Their most recent 2015 release, “Chasing Tales,” is a masterful, benchmark album, in the dual-guitar format.)
Having made a lasting impression on gentlemen the likes of Jeff Beck, Bill Bruford, Steve Vai — just to name a few! — Nicolas Meier is unquestionably one of today’s most well-rounded, ambitious, masterful up-and-coming talents on guitar.
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