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RECORDING IN SENEGAL

The last song I wrote for the album is about our fathers and elders, their legacy… At the time of the songwriting my father was critically ill in the hospital. As he has been living in African during the last years of his life, I decided for “La Memoire” to use some African folk elements and mix themwith a traditional folk acoustic guitar and vocal. More than giving it a feel I wanted it to be part embedded in the song. Meaning I wanted to go beyond using African percussions and instruments but collaborate with a singer using the question – answer that is common in traditional African music.
I have been very lucky to meet Karismatik and he agreed to join the project and recorded the various artists in his studio in Senegal during 2020. He introduced me to Ombré who kindly agreed to sing some of the lines I wrote for the backing vocals but took it to another level when writing some solo parts text and music. His beautiful melodies and very interesting rhythm signature have transformed this song and I feel very grateful to have had the chance to meet and collaborate with Ombre and Karismatik.
The outro part of the song “La Memoire” which I called “An African Prayer” is a mix of classical and African instruments and voices. I wrote it as I was facing my father passing and wanted to channel emotions in the song. Great and very emotional contribution from Ombré on this part again!

WRITING CLASSICAL MUSIC

In my pre 20’s I did 3 years of classical piano and had the dream to learn counterpoint, harmonization. Life had it other way and I could not follow this path for some years. As I resumed songwriting in 2018 I slowly went back to my passion for classical music and the study of orchestration. I spent time reading scoresheet, attending classical concerts, reading books about how to score for an orchestra. With recent technology some digital music plug ins are able to emulate instruments sound and dynamic quite well (if you are patient enough to program them for hours) and I started to invest time and money in those. I wrote 2 songs that are more classical influenced and 1 is on the album being released this summer, called “Fermer les Yeux”.
This song took many shapes and forms. Written around some repetitive notes patterns on acoustic guitar, changed to piano to electric guitars… and finally end up being using classical instruments and piano to tell this story. The vision was to offer a classical score using Flutes, Clarinets, Bassoon, Strings and from the Horns family only a light French Horn to keep sound quite aerial.
My journey brought me back to collaborate with Javier Zacharias, a talented and awarded multi instrumentalist and film scoring composer. Javier has been mentoring my work on classical composition, sitting with me (online) for long nights to rearrange classical instruments parts, brainstorm, rewrite and start again. For this song I am pleased to announce that Javier extended his collaboration and wrote some beautiful piano lines.
Next for the song will be to collaborate with Roby Tola on fitting electric guitars to this classical piece. He came with a beautiful counter melody on the Oboe which will make its way to the final version of the song and give a very 70’s vibe to the chorus.
The main vocal part has been recorded and special care has been put in backing vocals, knowing that I wanted to keep a light sound approach but also offer trademark harmonies.
More to come soon.

A WONDERFUL YEAR

“Une Annee Formidable” is the first single from the Les Rivières Folk album. Recorded during 2020, it marks a collaboration between several folk and country artists, who worked online from different countries. The single arranged by multi-awarded Italian musician Roberto Tola,  who toured and recorded with Bob Minzer, Tom Harrel, Carla Bley, Steve Swallow, Shakatak and many more.

RECORDING ADDITIONAL INSTRUMENTS

After recording the musical core of Une Année Formidable we wanted to give the song some extra color with the addition of a slide guitar and solo guitar for the finale played by a country artist from the USA Paul Tooley. To accompany the chorus and the drums parts arranged by Roberto Tola, I wanted to flesh out the sound by collaborating once again with the percussionist Daniel Sadownick, a session musician from the USA who played for Taylor Swift, Joe Bonamassa.

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