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Home Again by Loren Evarts
- posted by Dyan Garris on 5/21/2018
Home Again
Loren Evarts is an accomplished multi-instrumentalist, composer, and arranger. His most recent release, ‘Home Again,” is a collection of contemporary solo piano compositions produced by Will Ackerman and engineered by Tom Eaton.
Loren holds a Master’s degree in music education, taught for several public and private schools, and is now an instructor for five colleges.
“Home Again” is twelve tracks, four which were previously recorded by Loren, plus eight new compositions. The piano used for this recording is a Steinway B. The album is mellow, smooth, and soul-soothing all through.
Loren opens the album with “A Day on the Concord River,” which nicely sets the tone for all that comes next. Here we can almost feel the light breeze on our face and see the sunlight filtering softly through the trees as we gently canoe along on this peaceful journey. “Dugong Dance,” track 2, is graceful and enchanting. The dugong is an herbivorous marine mammal related to the manatee and the dolphin. Legend has it that the dugong was an inspiration for mermaids. This song perfectly captures those feelings.
“Far and Away,” track 3, is a personal favorite. Dreamy and delicious. “Ktaadn,” a spelling variation of Mount Katahdin in Maine, is track 4. Mount Katahdin is the highest mountain in the state of Maine and has inspired various artistic works. This one is lush and luxuriant, and one I found myself listening to several times.
“Sunset Island,” track 5, is truly gorgeous. Peaceful and resplendent, this brings up images of a charming place untouched and unchanged by time. The elegant and reverent, “Evensong,” (evening prayers), was stirred by Loren’s many visits to medieval cathedrals in England.
Track 7, title track, “Home Again,” has a light, whimsical feel, and was almost named “Poohsticks” which is game from a Winnie the Pooh book The House at Pooh Corner.
“Outermost House,” track 8, is full and splendid. I really love this one. “The Outermost House” was a small beach cottage refuge sitting high atop a dune on Cape Cod and belonging to writer Henry Beston, who spent a year there chronicling life on the beach. One can actually feel that “beachy” perspective through Loren’s excellent composition.
“Baker Lake” and “Nine Mile Bridge,” although a bit more somber, are equally as likeable as the rest of the album. “Wedding at Sunrise” is perfectly evocative of a joyful day – any joyful day; a celebration of life. “The Good Life,” gentle, ultra-melodic, and contemplative, winds up the album very nicely. This composition prompts us, perhaps, to give some thought to what ultimately makes life “good.”
Comforting, yet not so “comfortable” as to be boring or insipid. Sophisticated and unique, yet completely unpretentious. Glamorous, yet elegantly classic and classy, “Home Again” by Loren Evarts, is an album you will want to come home to again and again. Beautiful and recommended
Time Not Forgotten by Rhonda Mackert
- posted by Dyan Garris on 5/21/2018
Time Not Forgoten
Rhonda Mackert’s fifth album release, “Time Not Forgotten,” is an absolutely exquisite collection of twelve original solo piano pieces inspired by some of her various lifetime memories.
Feeling yourself completely relax from the very first notes, this is solo piano to immerse yourself in, for sure, whether we are “Chasing Fireflies,” “Dreaming of Sedona,” or watching the “White Cliffs”[of Dover] disappear in the distance.
Rhonda, seemingly one with her piano, is a master of quintessential elegance in both timing and touch – a wonderful artist to see in concert – and “Time Not Forgotten” is forty-eight minutes of pure bliss. Uncontrived, and with a completely effortless feel to it, every song on the album is wholly memorable.
“Dancing Through My Memories,” aptly opens the album. This has a such a nice light flavor to it, yet with an artful richness and depth at the same time. Beautifully performed with ease and grace, “Walking Among Giants” expresses, perhaps, a reverence for life and the gifts of life. Track 3, is the title track, “Time not Forgotten.” Like good memories, the song sticks in our head long after it has ended. Pure, graceful elegance.
To say Rhonda paints pictures with her music is truly an understatement. We are there. It is almost impossible to choose one track as a favorite, as they are all so beautiful. I am enamored of “White Cliffs,” which is both flowing and lovely and one to return to again and again. As well, “Healing Places,” on track 9, is exceptionally beautiful and calming as one would expect special healing places to be. “Dreaming of Sedona” perfectly evokes the soulful essence of that majestic place. Track 11, “Skipping Stones,” is fine and delicate, with a melody that skips across crystal clear water to settle deeply and indelibly into our heart space. The album winds down with the perfectly gorgeous and timeless, “Free Floating,” which feels dreamy, yet grounded, and well-suited, it seems, for peaceful sleep.
Superlatively calming, the album, “Time Not Forgotten,” by Rhonda Mackert is a must have and recommended for any solo-piano lover, and anyone who wants and needs an unparalleled experience of utter serenity. You won’t forget it.

Melodic Voyage by Mark Dunn
- posted by Liliian on 5/16/2018
Voyages Around The World Inspired New Mark Dunn CD
VOYAGES AROUND THE WORLD INSPIRED NEW MARK DUNN ALBUM

The music is exquisite on the new album, MELODIC VOYAGE, by American pianist Mark Dunn. This is his first solo piano album following a jazz album, a world-fusion CD and Brazilian band recording. Musically and physically Dunn is not one to stay in the same place for long. His music is inspired by traveling. He has been around the world three times and has lived in Costa Rica, Brazil and the United Arab Emirates (Dubai), always playing music along the way. As you will hear, Dunn writes extremely melodic instrumental tunes and performs them with a flair. Two tunes were inspired by time spent in Honduras, another is named after a Brazilian dancehall, one tune is based on an old Mandarin melody, and another piece is a tribute to Dunn’s father and Irish heritage. This a trip worth taking.
Rating: Excellent
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