This month I am pleased to bring you three very special artists from very different corners of the world. Anthony Papamichael - a Greek-American native of Astoria, Natasha Kozaily – a half Caymanian/half Lebanese singer songwriter from San Diego, California, and Yuichiro Tokuda – a saxophone virtuoso from Japan. Each of these musicians is unique in their own way and truly shows the diffusion of culture in music across the globe. Their sounds are unique and their music fantastic.
by Peter Douskalis*
Astoria native and current resident of Atlanta, Georgia, Anthony Papamichael, is a musician of great talent. With 5 CD releases, his newest “Open Heart”, and a track record that would leave most in the dust, Papamichael is a guitarist to be reckoned with. With multiple corporate sponsorships, world touring experience and a discography and work history of astounding accomplishment, Papamichael’s newest CD is certainly an intriguing object for the ear. “Open Heart” is the newest release of the Papamichael World Group and features 11 tracks ranging in various styles with influences of jazz, rock, world, and has great shredding guitar technique. Perhaps one of the most enjoyable aspects of this album and of Papamichael in general is his ability to shred on the guitar in yet a melodic fashion that is even pleasing to the ear of the average listener. You can find Anthony Papmichael online at www.papamichael.com.
Natasha Kozaily is a singer in San Diego, California with 2 CD releases and a terrific voice! She was raised on the island of Grand Cayman is half Caymanian and half Lebanese. She has been around the world having studied in New York, Wales, lived in Grand Cayman, and of course now residing in San Diego. The culture that Natasha has absorbed as a human being can truly be heard in the uniqueness of her sound. A blend of Caribbean, Middle Eastern, and European sounds set Natasha apart as a rare treasure in suffering world and music industry. When Natasha is not performing she is involved in environmental activism and community development. All of this contributes to a unique personality that be heard in both her voice and her music. Her first release “Between Shores” encompasses all of those elements of culture and personality for a set of beautiful songs. The release won the Album of the Year award by the Cayman Music and Entertainment Association for 2011. Her newest release “A Tale of One Fish” tells her story as she has come to find herself both as a person and a songwriter. Having travelled many times to Lebanon, influences of Middle Eastern music can heard in the CD. She has also dedicated a song titled “Letter to Beirut” to the beautiful city. The song is a finalist in the 2011 Malibu Music Awards Song Contest. Check Natasha out online at www.natashakozaily.com for more information and to purchase her CD’s.
Saxophone madman Yuichiro Tokuka… I can’t say enough about this guy. I have had the pleasure of playing some of his music on RadioNeo’s JazzCity program and I have loved every second of every one of his songs. The perfect blend of jazz fused with rock styles makes for truly the most appealing cross-genre grooving music. Yuichiro is an emerging name in the Japanese jazz scene. You might be wondering why we would feature him here…. Well, because his music is AMAZING. Open your ears and your mind and take a listen to any one of his songs. I suggest listening to the song “Nothing There” from the album Initial Impulse. Listen to JazzCity on RadioNEO to hear more of his music and also check out his website www.yuichirotokuda.com.
*Peter Douskalis is the host of RadioNEO’s weekly program “JazzCity” on Sunday’s from 6:30-8:00 PM. He is a nationally and internationally acclaimed jazz guitarist and music educator.