Life Seasons Reviews
Deeply positive musical expressions Richard Shulman – LIFE SEASONS: My, but time just flies, folks… it’s almost two years since I reviewed pianist/composer Richard’s inventive “Turned Into Lemonade” album, which got high marks from me, to be sure. To get an up-close and personal taste for Richard’s piano mastery, watch this video for “Early Spring” from his new album…
…since you’re right there already, be sure to SUBSCRIBE to his RichHeart Music – Richard Shulman channel on YouTube, where you’ll find a LOT more excellent video performances.
On the new release, Richard’s superb piano and compositional skills are complimented very nicely by Zack Page – bass; Rick Dilling – drums; Wendy Jones – soprano and flute; Paula Hanke – alto; Sherman Hoover – tenor; Bob Bencze – bass/baritone and Ron Clearfield – cello, especially on lovely tunes like “Bohemian Summer” (samples aren’t ready yet, as the album doesn’t go live until late June, 2020)… the contrast of vocals against Richard’s piano are simply stunning… DJ’s will be spinning this song OFTEN!
The combination of flute and piano on the intro for “Spinning into Winter”, as well as the tasty vocal, made this an absolute winner for me; another thing that is totally striking about Richard’s compositions is that they “paint” imagery that will stay in your head for a long time to come.
My choice for personal favorite of the thirteen seasonally-flavored sonic journeys Richard offers up is (without question) the cheerful and forward-looking “Hope for Spring”… these turbulent times make songs that are vibrantly alive ever more valuable – and this tune is top-of-the-line!
I give Richard and his high-talent crew a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED rating, with an “EQ” (energy quotient) score of 4.99. Get more information on Richard’s Richheart Music label as it becomes available. Rotcod Zzaj
#Deeply #positive #musical #expressions #Richard #Shulman
Life Seasons by Richard Shulman is a “brazzy” celebration of life and love. – Dyan Garris
Richard Shulman is a well-known keyboardist and composer who has recorded, to date, 28 albums along with an impressive amount of collaborations. Richard began playing the piano when he was seven years old and was trained in the classical and jazz fields. The music he creates is intended to be heartfelt and positive for audiences, himself, and for the world. One of the main focuses of his music is on meditation, healing, and inspiration.
Shulman’s new album “Life Seasons” is a vocal and instrumental “journey,” intended to express not only the seasons of life, but the depth of love possible from sharing life over many years.
The album, “Life Seasons,” (13 tracks, 6 of which are vocal tracks, and just over an hour), is not what we would call traditional New Age. It’s contemporary, but hard to classify or label. It’s a “brazzy” celebration of the beauty of life and love. What I mean by “brazzy” is this is an eclectic combination of what feels like Broadway showtunes along with some beautiful, relaxing, smooth jazz and a spoken word piece.
The album opens with the title track, “Life Seasons.” This is a vocal song featuring Paula Hanke, with Ron Clearfield on cello, plus Richard Shulman with a heartfelt piano performance. Lyrics were written by Brenda Lee Morrison. A good opener, the song is an invitation to the remembrance of a lifetime filled with love.
“Life seasons come and go,
We’ve each learned ebb and flow,
Somehow we grew together,
I will love you forever. . .”
Following is the mellow, soft jazz instrumental, “Summer Solstice,” which is the perfect segue into the most languid of seasons. The song features the trio of Richard on piano, Zack Page on bass, and Rick Dilling on bass. Very nice and relaxing.
Things heat up a bit with the trio performing a cool jazz samba, “Summer Night.” This is fun, upbeat and, yes, “summery.” Great bass, piano, and drums. Let’s dance.
“Bohemian Summer” is a vocal quartet piece (lyrics by Brenda Lee Morrison), that evokes an imaginary summer gathering, which I believe is a tribute to celebrating not just the season of summer, but summer solstice.
“We will gather here once more
On this familiar shore to be part of Bohemian lore,
Far beyond the saffron Sun
A journey has begun,
A cast of souls have dared to come
Returning to the One. . .”
Another pleasant, calming, jazz-based instrumental (trio) is “Pre-Autumn.” Featuring great piano, soft bass, and really good drums, this is nice, and gives us that feeling of wistfully bidding farewell to summer and beginning to embrace autumn. There is a carefree ambiance of wind-blown leaves twirling and dancing in the still warm autumn breeze.
Our hearts fully open to welcome the inevitable change of seasons in “Sweet Autumn.” New energy is ushered in by the trio again with a memorable piano melody and a gently flowing up-tempo feel. Excellent piece.
From the autumn season, we often DO just go “Spinning into Winter.” That’s a good way to put it. This is an action-oriented vocal piece with lyrics by Paula Jeanine Bennett and the great addition of subtle flute performance by Wendy Jones.
The time digs in and eases forward
The season of hope and new success,
By the time we get to “Winter Solstice,” the darkest time of year, we are invited to pause for a moment to contemplate inner light. This is beautiful solo piano by Richard Shulman. Gentle and poignant, with a good balance of the upper and lower registers of the piano, this is memorable and quite relaxing.
Have you ever walked in pristine white snow? It must be like having soft velvet shoes on your feet. The piece, “Velvet Shoes” captures and conveys the unique enjoyment of quietly walking in the snow. This is a pleasant vocal (quartet) piece with lyrics (poem) by Elinor Wylie.
“Let us walk in the white snow in a soundless space,
With footsteps quiet and slow, at a tranquil pace,
Under veils of white lace. . . “
It’s challenging to pick a favorite on this album, but I think the spoken word journey that is “Winter Solstice Dream: Keepers of the Light” may be it. Upon awakening from a dream, the quite touching words were written by Ron Young. This is a journey of “lightkeepers” moving from winter to spring. The excellent spoken word performance is by Wendy Jones, with Richard Shulman on perfect piano underlay. Here we are seeking a harbinger of spring within the deep depths of winter. So interesting, truly. We awaken from our own dream as we emerge from our own winter and get ready to embrace the optimism of spring. Reverent and special. “. . .Spring is coming. . .”
Spring is always a hopeful season with the inner knowing and promise that abundant life will not only return, but blossom and thrive. The songs, “Hope for Spring” and “Early Spring,” both performed by trio are two more lovely, perfectly balanced jazz instrumentals. Both, as one might expect, have an optimistic vibe. The land is awakening and “springing” into new life.
The album closes out with the blessings of new life in “The Fairy of Mystery Blue: Springtime Blessings.” This is a lighthearted, expansive vocal (quartet) that leaves us feeling happy and playful.
“Here’s what I have to say,
Start living your life today,
Let yesterday fade away,
Washing yourself in the morning dew. . . “
And here’s what I have to say: This is an interesting, different, refreshing sort of album that is kind of “all that ‘brazz.’”
Get “Life Seasons” here or wherever music is sold/streamed: https://RichHeartMusic.com
©℗ 2020 RichHeart Music, BMI
All music composed by Richard Shulman
Lyrics/Words by Brenda Lee Morrison tracks 1, 4, 13, Paula Jeanine Bennett track 7, Elinor Wylie track 9, Ron Young, track 10.
Richard Shulman – piano, all compositions and arrangements
Zack Page – bass on all except #8, 10, 13.
Rick Dilling – drums on all except #8, 10, 13.
Wendy Jones – soprano #4, 7, 9, 10, 13, and flute on #7
Paula Hanke – alto #1, 4, 9, 13.
Sherman Hoover – tenor #4, 9, 13.
Bob Bencze – bass/baritone #4, 9, 13.
Ron Clearfield – cello #1, 7
Ed & Stacey Bonk
Waltzing out of Town Reviews
The Richard Shulman Trio
Waltzing Out Of Town
RichHeart Music 2019
In addition to his solo projects, Asheville, North Carolina-based pianist/composer Richard Shulman has been heard on the Greenville Jazz Collective Big Band‘s Welcome To Earth (Greenville Jazz Collective, 2019) (also contributing one composition). Here he leads a trio with frequent collaborators bassist Zack Page and drummer Rick Dilling on a program of all-original compositions. Artist Marsha Hammel invited the trio to an event where she would paint a portrait while they performed: so the cover art actually inspired the creation of the album.
Opener “I Don’t Know Yet” (his imagined answer to a question about the name of the song) begins the album with a propulsive straight eighth rhythm. “Waltzing Out-of- Town” delivers the promised waltz with style and swing, and features a fine double bass solo. “Toasted” is a jazz blues with a pronounced Thelonious Monk accent (nice quote from Johnny Burke and Jimmy Van Heusen’s standard “Swinging On A Star”).
“Freedom” provides a dose of funk, while “Walkin’ to Your House” has a hooky ostinato pattern which proves to be a fine accompaniment to bass and drum solos. “For Chick” uses a sprightly Latin groove to honor pianist/composer Chick Corea. Closer “Afternoon Memory” brings the album to a close with a gentle bossa nova. A lovely ending to a varied program of piano trio music.
Richard Shulman – Waltzing Out of Town 74O’s Notes: Richard Shulman (p) forms a trio with bassist Zack Page and drummer Rick Dilling. They perform a set of twelve Shulman original compositions. The program includes gentle blues instrumentals like “Toasted” and the free flowing “Climb Up”. The all-instrumental selections continue for over an hour of relaxing listening. Waltzing out of Town was inspired by a session at The Gallery in Flatrock, NC where Marsha Hammel painted the trio while they performed. That painting is the cover artwork!D. Oscar GroomesO’s Place Jazz NewsletterP.O. Box 38430 Charlotte, NC 28278
Ernest Turner shows his church roots on this soulful post bop session with drummer Jon Curry and bassist Lance Scott Jr as he mixes and matches sources. The team shows sophisticated complexity that swings hard on the burning “Return Of Thanos” and the sizzling “In Or Out.” Turner’s hands stride well as he has fun on the Thelonious Monk tune “Monk’s Dream” and gives a warm nocturnal mood to Fats Waller’s “Ain’t Misbehavin’” while getting reflective with Scott on “Dienda.” Most impressive is his gospel solo spiritual refection of “Precious Lord” while giving an urgency with the team on “We Shall Overcome.” Sunday Morning power with a Friday night pulse.
Pianist Richard Shulman joins together with Zack Page/b and Rick Diling/dr for a dozen swinging originals. Shulman’s touch is uptown classy, elegant on “I Don’t Know Yet,” sweet on “Afternoon Memory” and bluesy for “Toasted.” The team gets into a modal mood on driving tunes “Climb Up” and “For Chick” and have some fun with a Monkish “Stop and Blow” while getting funky on the back beating “Freedom.” Straight-ahead and no chaser.
RICHARD SHULMAN TRIO/Waltzing Out of Town: The piano man serves up yet another delightful slice of jazz piano trio work. Easy going and enjoyable enough that it doesn’t even need a Friday evening bar on the water to compliment it. While he might yet again evade the jazz police, everyone else will have a great time with this upbeat, buoyant and bright set that just shimmers along so rightly. Well done.
(Rich Heart 1927)
Volume 43/Number 199 May 8, 2019 MIDWEST RECORD 830 W. Route 22 #144 Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher Copyright 2019 Midwest Record
A New Awareness Reviews
A New Awareness: Music Of The Twelve Rays
Richard Shulman is a versatile composer with dozens of albums behind him in which he has played various genres such as new age, ambient, neo classical or jazz.
“A New Awareness: Music of the Twelve Rays” is a work created in collaboration with the writer Michael G. Love, author of the book “The Reality of Your Greatness: A Personal Journey Through the Twelve Rays”, a disc that was conceived to listen while reading the mentioned book, since each of the themes of the album represents each of the chapters of that book.
Musically speaking, we are facing a work of calm, meditative music, a work in which each ray, which is the same, each theme, plunges us into a sea of tranquility, with sounds of the best new age, those deep and magical sounds that help our spirit find rest that the hustle and bustle of daily life does not allow us to achieve.
Beautiful work to follow those rays of light that allow us to take life with more tranquility.
A New Awareness: Music of the Twelve Rays – Richard Shulman
This two-disk set by new age keyboardist Richard Shulman was made in collaboration with Michael G Love and inspired by his book, “The Reality of Your Greatness: A Personal Journey Through the Twelve Rays.” It’s intended to help listeners connect to the power, energy and awareness of the Twelve Rays. The music centers on hope, healing, and encourages the listener to embrace new potential and experiences.
The tracks are intended to accompany the chapters in the book. Love’s spoken-word renditions are available at the book’s website (TheTwelveRays.com). The music works as a stand-alone product for meditation and healing modalities. Shulman improvised or channeled each composition as the author described the purpose and power of each Ray. He feels that the music emanated from Spirit and is meant to give practical empowerment to the listener.
The first three tracks are dedicated to “Rays of Aspect,” and are connected to the Creator and creation. Tracks 4 to 8 explore the “Rays of Attributes,” and explore the range of human characteristics that trigger life experiences. Tracks 9 to 12 comprise the “Rays of Soul Integration,” and the music for these enhances higher states of consciousness for achieving a fresh awareness. Each Ray offers a positive benefit for the listener.
The music was created with electronic keyboards and synths, and includes strings, horns, flute, drones and chimes. This gentle, uplifting music enhances any kind of meditation or healing work, and a wide range of other spiritual pursuits that benefit from the accompaniment of softly floating inspirational music.
~review by Elizabeth Hazel
Artist: Richard Shulman
You Are More, Inc, 2018
12 tracks, 1 hr 27 min total
AUSTRALIAN NEW AGE LIFESTYLE PUBLICATION
A New Awareness: Music of the Twelve Rays
Richard Schulman has on this divine work, demonstrated his absolute genius within the New Age genre of music, a talent, honed over the past decades, of which he considers is channelled from the Divine, to bring to the listener the awareness, on this album, of the Twelve Rays: a metaphor for the Twelve vibrations to encourage self-development and empowerment.
Composed to compliment the book by Michael C Love, The Reality of your Greatness: A Personal Journey Through the Twelve Rays, Schulman has simply taken his Musical Soul Portraits, for those who wish for music to be created for them for the higher good and broadened it to encompass the energies involved within the Twelve Rays.
Soul Portraits are composed on the spot; he meets with a group or person, feels their energies than sits at his keyboards to create a portrait for them. Creating the album was based on a collaboration where each of the Twelve Rays, as described by Michael Love to Richard Schulman who would then sit in a receptive state, allowing the music to arrive, to be transcribed onto the keyboards in pure form.
Schulman considers this music to be straight from God or Spirit, offering empowerment to make change, to discover that the basis for change is already within, and that spiritual change and growth can be achieved through ‘conscious creation’, through understanding and acceptance not pain and suffering as so many believe: these are the fundamental principles behind the Twelve Rays.
The work is absolutely beautiful, designed to be a part of the healing journey as presented in Michael C Love’s book. As each Ray is studied, the music particular to that Ray and set to that vibration, is there to relax, guide and encourage change to be undertaken.
As a standalone work, it is perfect for relaxation, meditation, empowerment and the conscious or unconscious invitation to allow joy and peace to enter to settle the turmoil within.
The first disc contains the 1st to 7th Rays which encompasses the Rays of Aspect and the Rays Attributes. The second disc commences with the 8th ray containing the five Rays of Soul, completing the journey at the 12th Ray where the listener is encouraged to understand that “We are Spirit and step into your power”.
Powerful and completely Spiritual this is a comprehensive body of work sent without doubt from the Divine to help connect to power, energy and awareness, encompassing healing, love, meditation and rebirth.
Richard Schulman equals Divine perfection on A New Awareness: Music of the Twelve Rays.
A Springboard to Great Music
SELF-HELP BOOK BEGAT LATEST RICHARD SHULMAN SYNTHESIZER ALBUM
The new Richard Shulman synthesizer album combines new age, ambient, space and neo-classical music, but the inspiration for the music began with a book! Self-betterment guru Michael G. Love wrote the book THE REALITY OF YOUR GREATNESS: A PERSONAL JOURNEY THROUGH THE TWELVE RAYS. The Rays are like steps to making your life better, more fulfilling with more awareness. Then Love meditated on each Ray and fed those thoughts, spiritual feelings and energy-bolts to Shulman who let them enter into his being while he composed the music on this album — A NEW AWARENESS: MUSIC OF THE TWELVE RAYS. Trippy, yes, but it resulted in some great music. This is a powerful musical creation that can help the listener on many levels from healing and meditation all the way through the Twelve Rays process.
ELECTRONIC MUSIC PORTAL
REFRESHINGLY PURE SYNTHESIZED NEW AGE MUSIC BY RICHARD SHULMAN WORTH A TEST DRIVE
ELECTRONIC MUSIC PORTAL
LEADING SYNTHESIST RICHARD SHULMAN RAISES LISTENERS’ CONSCIOUSNESS
Check out the new double-album, A NEW AWARENESS, by Richard Shulman. He has become one of the leading musicians in the new age genre over the past several decades, and since 1984 he has dedicated his music to Divine connection and the awakening of inner joy. Shulman has more than two-dozen albums under his own name as well as another two-dozen recordings for which he has provided compositions, performances or production (such as Bliss of Being by his group The Pure Heart Ensemble). He studied at the prestigious Eastman School of Music, got his Masters Degree in musical composition from State University of New York at Buffalo, and was a composer-performer for a decade with Theatre of the Heart — a New York City-based performance group working to bring higher consciousness and environmental awareness to audiences. Now he offers up great new age music on A NEW AWARENESS, created on synthesizers but also including the sounds of instrumentation such as piano or flute. The main thing is that the music ties in with a spirit-soul-and-consciousness-raising program called The 12 Rays (there is a book out as well — THE REALITY OF YOUR GREATNESS by Michael G. Love — that explains it all if you want to go beyond the music). Regardless, this music works like so much great new age music in that it promotes healing, growth, relaxation and well-being.
KEYS & CHORDS
THE MAGAZINE FOR THE MUSIC-LOVER WITH A BROAD TASTE
BASED IN BELGIUM
Music was our first love… and it will be our last…