Longe Magazine Staff Writer

Longe Magazine Staff Writer

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Wondrous Love" (Ambient, smooth jazz) by Ashley K. Davis

"Wondrous Love" by Emmy-nominated and award-wining musician Ashley  Davis is a Jazz/Ambient song with a lot of vibes... Ashley is a music consultant, arranger, and Director. The song is currently getting good radio airplay and has been playing in open Clubs and bars. Listen to the song and let us know your thoughts.

What first got you into music?

  • I started playing piano at age 5. My mom was a musician.  She played flute in the concert band and piano in church.  She immediately identified the musical gift that I had.  Both of my grandmothers were either singers and/or musicians in the church also, so music is “the family business,” so to speak. 

    How would you describe the music that you typically create?

  • I would describe my music as ambient influenced by jazz, soul, gospel & classical.  My musical background and taste is extremely diverse.  All of my projects have had a travel motif attached to them.  I’ve had the opportunity to travel to 30 countries and have lived in a number of different cities (London, New York, Vicenza, Dallas, et. al). The vicissitudes of life make for good songwriting and art.   I realize that the consistent thing that has maintained my life during years of travel, some bad relationships/marriages, etc. was the love of God.  His love is truly unfathomable and “wondrous”, if you will, hence my current offering “Wondrous Love.”  The song itself is an old hymn of the church that I arranged.  It is written in Dorian mode, so it has an exotic quality to it.  With the instruments I used for the melody, it sounds very Eastern.  This is also indicative of my travels.  

    What is your creative process like?
  • I’m a pianist by training, so my composition process always begins at the piano.  For my instrumental output, I always begin with a theme or some subject or idea.  Even though my music is primarily instrumental, I compose like I’m writing for a singer.  The voice gives a lyrical flavor as well as an emotional bent to the music.  With that in mind, I try to make the piano or synth lead lines “sing” as a voice would.  Life (personal issues and current events) and God are my primary inspirations and subject matter for composition.  All of my past projects (Introspection, A Soul’s Odyssey, & Passport were autobiographical to a degree and writing them and performing them have been a source of personal therapy and healing for me.  

Who would you most like to collaborate with?  

  • Sting, Peter Gabriel, Jonathan Butler, Larry Heard, Thomas Dolby, Quincy Jones, Alice Coltrane, Gino Vannelli, Stewart Copeland, Donald Lawrence & Richard Page.


If you could go open a show for any artist who would it be?

  • Sting & Jonathan Butler absolutely!!

What is one message you would give to your fans?

  • Producing good music & being an artist is like a slow-cooked home meal.  It’s not a fast-food, overnight quick endeavor.  I believe that the music that stands the test of time is music that was created slow & deliberate.  I think that character also affects your artistry too.  Character is who you are when you’re by yourself and nobody hears you but God.  If you can stay humble, deliberate, open for development & musical & emotional evolution, I think that the sky is the limit.  Be in love with yourself and with your own creativity.  If you operate using what you have, I believe that will be enough to escort you into realms beyond your wildest imagination. 


What is the most useless talent you have?  

  • Don’t have an answer for this one.  If it’s a talent, how can it be useless? 

Do you sing in the shower? What songs?

  • I don’t really do much singing in the shower.  I love the acoustical environment of the shower, so I do more instrumental and percussive-type of singing instead.


What would you be doing right now, if it wasn’t for your music career?  

  • In addition to being a music professional, I am also a minister.  I’ve been involved in pastoral ministry for almost 20 years.  I love ministry, so I’d probably be fully-immersed in working in a local church.  


Where have you performed? What are your favorite and least favorite venues? Do you have any upcoming shows?

  • As a traveling musician/sideman, I’ve performed in 30 countries.  I’ve played in venues all over the world.  My favorite places to play have been the IndigO2 in London, the Basilica of San Marco in Venice, Italy, MSG in New York, and, of course, the Cannon Center in my hometown of Memphis.   I really don’t have a least favorite.  Currently, I don’t have any live shows upcoming.  The COVID-19 virus has canceled all of my future bookings for right now.  I will have a live online concert that will be streamed through various outlets.  It’s gonna be epic and conceptual, with video and interpretive dance elements throughout.   


How do you feel the Internet has impacted the music business?

  • It has had both a positive and negative influence.  The upside is the ability to distribute music swiftly.  Your music can be heard and purchased in NY, Berlin or Copenhagen at the same time and on the same day.  The downside of the internet is the issue of piracy.  With streaming packages and services like Spotify, YouTube, etc., it takes an inordinate amount of streams just to make any money at all.  There’s no real money in recorded music these days.  The money to be made is in performing and selling your merchandise at the gig.  



What is your favorite song to perform?

  • I love playing hymns for solo piano.  My favorite hymn to play is the classic “It Is Well With My Soul,” by Horatio Spafford.


Which famous musicians do you admire?

  • I have a few heroes:  Bill Dixon (my first piano teacher), Eddie Pryor (my first organ teacher), John David Peterson, Thomas Dolby, George Duke, Jeff Lorber, J.S. Bach, Bill Meyer, & Michael Omartian are a few.  My compositional/arranging influences are Debussy, Michael Colina, Quincy Jones, Cesar Franck, Michel Camilo, Michael Kamen, Hans Zimmer, John Williams, Isaac Hayes, Lester Snell, David Foster, just to name a few.  I am also a die-hard Prince fan.  His creativity & artist transparency, coupled with just sheer raw ability has always been inspirational for me.  

What is the most trouble you’ve ever gotten into?

  • 2 failed marriages. (haha!!)

What is the best advice you’ve been given?

  • The best musical advice that I’ve ever received came from the guest conductor of the All-State Jazz Band that I auditioned and played for.  After being completely off-base in my interpretation of Count Basie’s music, the jazz band director made a statement of great profundity:  “Ashley, less is more.”  My mother has a saying that I live by:  “Never let anyone’s opinion become your reality.” My father had a saying equally as profound: “Son, a wise man learns from his mistakes, but a wiser man learns from the mistakes that somebody else makes.”

If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?

  • I’ve always been bothered by the “cookie-cutter” nature of the recording industry.  When you get certain artists that are popular, what tends to follow is a wave of copycat artists with copycat songs.  After a while, many artists start to sound alike.  They have similar vocal styles & the songs are often flavored the same.  This has been the marketing strategy of countless A&R reps, to go out and find “the next it-girl or boy” or to find another artist that sounds like “you know who.”  The effect of this is simply trendy music and artists are forced to keep up so that the industry machine doesn’t grind to a halt.  Popular music playlists are extremely narrow & songs have a seasonal shelf-life...  As an educator, I also wish that the industry served a more purposeful function besides just churning out music for commerce.  The arts are a powerful tool of social commentary and society is greatly impacted by the arts.  If the industry would make this a priority as well as creating revenue, they would be on the cutting age of making the earth a better place.  Why?  Because the entire world loves music.   

What’s next for you?

  • I’m in the final stages of completing this full album project.  I am exploring unique opportunities to perform music.  My music is intended for healing, relaxation & personal reflection as well as being a soundscape for film, so I am open to those opportunities too. In addition to being an artist/composer, I am a college professor, teaching piano & music theory and I am a musical director in theater, so I am busy, busy, busy. 

Cheflodeezy 3 Hot new releases “Koockin & Juggin”, “Ass Up”, and “She Don’t Belong To Me”.

Miami Rapper Cheflodeezy has three hot new releases which are “Koockin & Juggin (https://open.spotify.com/track/3kOtfXLugigPhrqo26mqve?si=HH0ELxAXQe-8x5ivmQkkqA), 

“Ass Up (https://open.spotify.com/track/7JnclsIb9qMVI6D2ONYilJ?si=k4HDnoVgRfK2LF9spjVTtw)", and 

“She Don’t Belong To Me”(https://open.spotify.com/track/4CA3uEShxofldR0kZaOiwD?si=uoa4K9fJRsOTdGK9RRpLPQ

Cheflodeezy has a mixture of Hip-Hop & Reggae with a touch of R&B in his songs; with this, it makes his flow unique and his sound stands out among the crowd.  From the way in which he rides his beats, his flow, and his amazing punchlines are superb, it makes him different from any other artist.

Mr. Neal by Step 2 Calvary

The record label Divers Music Inc release Mr. Neal's New song called "Step 2 Calvary". (https://lnkfi.re/PKJG5Ol9 ) Please review the songs and let us know your thoughts on this hot new release.

 

Mr. Neal response to interview questions!

What first got you into music?

I grew up on Andrae Crouch, Jesse Dixon, Danielle Hall, and Walter Hawkins. But it wasn't until I heard Donn Thomas, who is now my mentor, that I began my career.

Who inspired you to make music?

Donn Thomas

How would you describe the music that you typically create?

Universal and Positive

What is your creative process like?

It sounds crazy, but God gives me songs when I wash dishes.

Who would you most like to collaborate with?

The Minnesota Orchestra

What is one message you would give to your fans?

This is not an individual SPRINT or a MARATHON. It's a relay, and you're the ANCHOR. Your turn is coming. DON"T QUIT!!

What is the most useless talent you have?

Not sure.

Do you sing in the shower? What songs?

Step to Calvary

What would you be doing right now, if it wasn’t for your music career?

I’m doing everything I dream of doing. My degree is in Design & Advertising. I am currently a Marketing Manager.

Where have you performed? What are your favorite and least favorite venues? Do you

Internationally. My favorite place so far was Canada. The least favorite is any place of worship with a bunch of religious rules that point to a man and not God.

Have any upcoming shows?

In the works considering our current social situation.

How do you feel the Internet has impacted the music business?

It has weakened the ability to make a modest living & has made it convoluted by saturating it with clutter thus blocking out the sun.

What is your favorite song to perform?

Step 2 Calvary

Which famous musicians do you admire?

Donn Thomas, Andrae Crouch, Bobby Caldwell, Peabo Bryson, Luther Vandross, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Kevon Edmonds, Gavin Christopher, Gary Oliver...just to name a few.

What is the most trouble you’ve ever gotten into?

Not giving my mother all her change back after going to the store and lying about it...didn't end well for me.

What is the best advice you’ve been given?

Get a lawyer to read the CONTRACT!!!!!

If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?

Put more control in the ARTIST's hands.

What’s next for you?

Continue to share STEP 2 CALVARY, then wash some more dishes to see what's next.

Timothy Pauls' new song LIVIN COVID-19

Timothy Paul has loved music since he was a child. He found an old guitar in the trash when he was 6 and begin playing. Timothy was inspired by great artists like Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, and George Benson. He loves creating music that moves your soul. He can hear a sound and become inspired to make music from it. He would love to collaborate with Alicea Keys, Jayz, and others like Kanye. If he could open a show it would be great to open a show for Alicea Keys. The message he wants to share with his fans is music can change people because it can change our feelings. His most useless talent is his music composing gift.

 

Timothy Paul currently works with many community organizations promoting social and economic change. He has performed mostly at festivals and church concerts. The internet has helped launch my music career from his latest video. Timothy received much streaming across social media platforms. His favorite song to perform is Cherie Amour by Stevie Wonder. He admires George Benson and Kenny G.

The most trouble he has ever got into was fighting against a giant casino operator trying to put a casino in a distressed neighborhood. Timothy was frowned upon by individuals who do not understand the effect a casino can have on an urban community. He learned that the key to taking on challenges like this is the negotiate and bridle his words before speaking out on certain issues. The best advice given to me was never to allow anyone to stifle your dreams. He is already in the studio writing new music. He wants his music to bridge race and generations.

 Biography:

Timothy Paul, a native of Springfield, MA, is a veteran community leader with over 37 years of service providing leadership to non-profit organizations and formally recognized around the country and by both the   City of   Springfield and the   Commonwealth of Massachusetts. He is President of New England Partners in Faith and is currently serving in his third term as president of the Council of Churches of Western Massachusetts.

Timothy  Paul is a gifted speaker, songwriter  and musician with several completed music projects. He aims to produce music that touches your soul.

Timothy  Paul also serves as  Pastor of  The Christian Cathedral in Springfield, MA, and president of Epiphany  Development Corporation which completed a $14 million  Holiday Inn Express hotel,  downtown Springfield, MA. which created over 250 construction and permanent jobs.

The recent LIVIN COVID-19 Song was produced after a video of Timothy  Paul singing goes viral with nearly  10 million views across social media. Timothy  Paul released his latest song and video to touch lives during the corona pandemic.

Love Won't Stop by Adrian Davis

Adrian Davis's new song "Love won't stop" is doing well. The radio DJ's are loving the song. Once the COVID-19 is over this song is ideal for the clubs. Listen to the song below and let us know your thoughts on this hot new single.

What the artist had to say:

What first got you into music?

I started singing in church when I was 3 years old. 

Who inspired you to make music?

My mother initially inspired me, and still does. She’s a brilliant musician herself. My father took me to music lessons and always attended my concerts as a child. It meant everything to me to see my parents at all my performances growing up.

How would you describe the music that you typically create?

I describe it as music that fits the occasion as needed. That’s how it comes out.

What is your creative process like?

Most ideas come to me in my sleep, or while I’m driving. Sometimes I take a simple motive, and I build layers around it. Other times, I may read something or see something in real life, and it inspires me to create.

Who would you most like to collaborate with?

Quincy Jones, Stevie Wonder, Phil Collins, Questlove, John Williams, Kirk Franklin, Mary Mary, Jazmine Sullivan, Celine Dion, Eric Whitacre, Terrence Blanchard

If you could go open a show for any artist who would it be?

Definitely Usher, Katy Perry, EWF, Dave Matthews, Coldplay  

What is one message you would give to your fans?

Put God first, and you can be what you want to be. I’ve lived by this idea my whole life, and I believe it as my truth.

What is the most useless talent you have?

No such thing. I would call it the least useful talent. Honestly, I think every talent I have, regardless of level, is useful as needed. I just don’t want to be disrespectful to the talents I’ve been blessed to have.

Do you sing in the shower? What songs?

I’m a choir teacher, so I do a lot of vocals in the shower. I also come up with beats in the shower.

What would you be doing right now, if it wasn’t for your music career?

I am a music teacher at Roosevelt High School in Minneapolis, and I am also a P.H.D music education student at the University of Minnesota. So, my plate is full.

Where have you performed? What are your favorite and least favorite venues? Do you have any upcoming shows?

I don’t have a favorite or least favorite. I just enjoy sharing music with people. As far as upcoming shows, I plan on looking into a possible virtual concert in my basement this summer, only because of our current COVID-19 situation.

How do you feel the Internet has impacted the music business?

The internet has been great for allowing independent artists to showcase their music without any hindrances or gatekeepers. There’s more music accessible to the public than ever. The internet has also made it harder to find great music because there is so much out there for consumption.

What is your favorite song to perform?

I have a song called "Alive" that is on my "Divers" album. It rocks

Which famous musicians do you admire?

Stevie Wonder, Brian McKnight, Marcus Miller, Aretha Franklin, A Tribe Called Quest, Erykah Badu, Chick Corea, Lauryn Hill, The Yellowjackets, Prince, Jimmy Smith, Dr. Dre, Pharrell Williams, Timbaland, Frank McComb, Jay Z, Mint Condition, Donny Hathaway, Phil Collins, Ray Charles, Queen, Robert Glasper, and many more…

What is the most trouble you’ve ever gotten into?

I got suspended from school for skipping class…hanging out in the band room.

What is the best advice you’ve been given?

My mom always tells me to plan the work, then work the plan.

If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?

Creating more collaborations between industry and music education. Our schools need a greater connection to the music industry. It will make a music career more relevant when a child can have real experience in music beyond the traditional formats that exist in schools today.

What’s next for you?

I’m so close to finishing my doctoral work at the University of Minnesota in 2021. I will continue creating and sharing more music from Divers, being a great educator who teaches music, looking to collaborate musically with great people, and providing opportunities for others to create and develop their gifts and talents.

New single 'ILEKE" by Roze

Roze is a Nigerian American music duo based in the US with real names 'Row' Rodney and 'Zuwa' Osazuwa Agbonayima. Roze is signed to U & I Music. They are a blend of Hip Hop, RnB, and most notably Afrobeat which is a hot and legendary genre in their home country Nigeria. Their new single 'ILEKE' talks about the African woman, her shape, and the Waistbeads that are mostly synonymous with the African Woman. The song "ILEKE" is produced by Mekoyo (IG: @mrmekoyo).

NYC party king SkullandHeadphones releases Without Your Love

The New York dance-scene legend SkullandHeadphones has dropped his addictive new track 'Without Your Love', and it is the summer anthem we all need right now!

It's vocodred vocal mantra, phat bassline and pounding house beat may bring Daft Punk to mind, and the classic house cuts of 80s Detroit, but SkullandHeadphones is redefining disco for a new era!

Divers Music Inc Three Hot New Releases!

Divers Music (diversmusic.com) is located in Minneapolis, MN. Divers Music's CEO is Adrian Davis. He is also the lead producer for the record label. Mr. Davis believes in great talent, and that is why he seeks out each artist's talents before creating a musical marriage.

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