Mike Casey - new album and US live dates.
Tuesday, February 11, 2020
We have received the following press release;
For Feb 19 (Audio), Feb 26 (Music Video) Release
Rising Saxophonist Mike Casey Re-Imagines Nat King Cole’s “Unforgettable”
Mike Casey is a melody poet. The New York based story-telling songwriter, producer, and sonic alchemist is a multi-talented force whose soul stirring saxophone sound and creative use of phrasing reaches out with love and embraces your musical desires, one note at a time.
After his 3rd album (A remix project, working with producers like Emmy winning Apple Juice Kid to re-imagine cuts from his first two albums that were recorded live at The Side Door in a variety of hip hop styles, tracing back to his own childhood DJing roots), recent single Venus, (a musical prayer for peace inspired by The Venus Project), Mike kicks off his 4th album Law of Attraction rollout with a meditative re-imagination of Nat King Cole’s classic “Unforgettable”.
Recorded in Brooklyn NYC in July 2018 with his longtime trio (Matt Dwonszyk, Corey Garcia) right before leaving to Spain for a yearlong master’s in Contemporary Performance/Music Production with Berklee’s Valencia campus, Mike’s arrangement radically downshifts the tempo to a minimal, sparse ballad with a haunting re-harmonisation. Over two days in a hot basement studio without air conditioning, the trio (with Grammy nominated pianist Benito Gonzalez of Pharaoh Sanders/Kenny Garrett esteem joining on 3 tracks) recorded what would become the 15 tracks that make up Mike’s 4th release “Law of Attraction”. The music was recorded “old-school”, all in one room, the musicians facing each other, with no isolation and no studio tricks.
Equal parts inspired by his love for Houston hip hop’s “chopped-n-screwed” slowed music concept, Charles Mingus’ dark, dreamy harmonic counterpoint, and the arranging style choices of Betty Carter (who he began exploring in depth while in an immersive Betty Carter Jazz Ahead residency at the Kennedy Center in 2015), the arrangement was originally conceived in late 2015 and originally intended to be featured on the 2016 Side Door show that resulted in 14 first takes live and ultimately his debut and sophomore live album releases, The Sound of Surprise (2017) and Stay Surprising (2018) but didn’t make the cut.
Twice a month from mid February through mid October Mike will release either a new track or music video from the album, with the full album coming late October and an EP of alternate takes & outtakes coming mid November.
Mike is on tour at the following venues to support Law of Attraction’s 10 month rollout:
Kennedy Center Millenium Stage (Washington DC, Feb 13)
Side Door Jazz Club (Feb 28, Old Lyme CT)
Headroom (Jersey City NJ, Feb 29) featuring Grammy nominated special guest pianist Zaccai Curtis
SXSW (Austin TX, March 18)
Rockwood Music Hall (NYC, April 2)
Montpelier Arts Center (Riverdale MD, May 1)
More dates TBA soon
More about Mike:
Bringing the joy of jazz across genre lines to a diverse young audience around the world, Mike’s music passed 4.2 million streams in less than the first 3 years of his recording career (against all odds, without a record label or a team - an anomaly in the genre). On a mission to be a passionate vessel for “jazz” in the 21st century, his searing sound, always aiming to connect emotionally and tell a story, demands the attention of the listener. This is not your parent’s elevator music.
“I’m not interested in sizzle over substance,” he says. “Improvising, or as I like to think of it, spontaneous composing, is not about displaying skill for ego’s sake. I aim to deliver each musical statement with power, honesty, and passion to connect with audiences.”
Fresh off his trio’s headlining showcase at Barcelona’s Future Music Forum (one of EU’s top mainstream music industry conferences), APAP showcase in NYC, and packed USA Return shows in Philadelphia, New York, and Augusta GA, recent praise for Mike’s music and journey have come from both within and outside the jazz world: Huffington Post, Forbes, Music Ally, Radio Primavera Sound, Worldwide FM, Downbeat, Jazz in Europe, Songtrust, Jazz FM, DJbooth, Connecticut Magazine, WBGO, Evernote, Rapchat and much more along. Mike is endorsed by Yanagisawa saxophones, and recently worked with industry leader Splice to create their first ever saxophone sample pack.
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