Fresh and clean, the jazz pop trio from Hungary called Mizar debuts their first international release, called Natural Design.  Reminiscent of 80s soft jazz and pop, the group’s tunes often call on a world beat flavor to add international dimension .  Lead singer Fanni Sarkozy’s vocals are smooth and mellow, even soothing.  And the overall feel of Natural Design is up tempo with warm tones.  Track 7, A Tale of Two Hearts, is my personal favorite and offers up some gorgeous violins and treats you to a dose of traditional Hungary seeping into the mix, just to remind you where you are.

I’ve enjoyed getting to know this CD, and it seems I’m far from the only one.  Smoothjazz.com, a longtime favorite internet stop among jazz fans, has been giving Mizar air time on their online radio station.  Several jazz radio stations around the U.S. have been taking notice and spinning their tracks as well.  And that beloved of jazz magazines Jazziz?  They’re calling them “engaging and atmospheric“.   And carp(e), a smaller fish in the big pond of indie music (that’s me in case you hadn’t yet noticed where you’ve landed), thinks the original Mizar, famed star of the Big Dipper, may have a bit of shining competition.  This jazzy version of its celestial self has its own way of expression:  smooth jazz drawing on various eras and cultures to build its own Natural Design.

Want to win your own copy of the Natural Design CD by Mizar?  I’ve got 3 to give away!  Scroll below the video clip for entry rules (but be sure to give the music a listen first!)

Video: While Natural Design is performed in English, the below Szombat Reggel is in Hungarian.

Multiple Options for Multiple Entries:

1.) Just tell me what you enjoy about Mizar’s music based on the above clip. Or visit BeagleBeat and tell me what else you liked there and why. (***You may enter once a day, but please list a new item you like each time.) Remember, leave an interesting comment. If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Blog about, Twitter, and/or Subscribe! Get an extra entry for each of these activities.  This time just leave a separate comment for each (only one time for each extra activity completed), giving me a link to your blog post, your Twitter name, and/or a note saying you’re a subscriber. (Subscribe in the upper right!)

(Psst!  My Twitter name is dkMommy.)

Feel free to do all four to gather multiple entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Wednesday, May 7, 2010, to enter.

Click Here for More Giveaways

When sitting still is just not an option, it’s time to pop in Marianni Ebert’s CD Vai Saber.  This Brazilian Jazz singer puts on quite a show at the Zinc Bar in New York City, and fortunately you can hear a live performance anytime you like when you have Vai Saber on hand.  An amazingly talented woman, Marianni has already built herself quite a reputation in Brazil as a well-known actress, singer, dancer, and songwriter.  She’s been making her mark in New York as well, with a weekly gig at the Zinc Bar (West Village of Manhattan, if you’re in the area).  She’s even appeared in an episode of Law & Order. But she’s not limiting herself to only two countries. With the vivacity that exudes every track of Vai Saber, no one can doubt she’ll continue to take the globe by storm!

Vai Saber is alive with the sounds of Brazilian jazz – cool rhythms, a hot voice, and a sound that bears hitting the play button again and again.  Listeners will be in for a real tropical treat, as all tracks are written by Marianni and lead guitarist Jair Coelho.  The overall feel of the music is fun, sexy, and filled with motion, so it’s with great excitement that I tell you I have one copy of Marianni’s Vai Saber to give to one of you!  Please take a moment to visit Marianni’s My Space Page and take a listen!

Too impatient to see if you win the CD?

Multiple Options for Entry:

1.) Just visit Marianni’s MySpace page and give her music a listen.  Come back here and tell me why you like it!  (You may enter once a day.) Remember, leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active.

     Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway.

     Want to subscribe?  Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box on the left. (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post.  Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post. (If your comment doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry – I may have to approve it first.  My blog might think it’s spam but gosh darn, I certainly don’t!)

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry! (I’m dkmommy if you want to follow me.)

Feel free to do all four to gain several entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Friday, May 29, 2009, to enter.

Click Here for More Giveaways

In their new CD Altamira, guitarist Gabor Olgyay and percussionist Aurel Hollo of Hungary give us an intensely entertaining blend of world music and jazz.  While the musical stylings vary throughout, the most present sounds are those of the classical guitar, the meringue and wind instruments as well as occasional gentle vocals.  The compositions range from a more classic Spanish feel and hints of Hungarian folk, to more experimental jazz and new age flavored pieces, and each song progresses throughout the CD from the classical to modern jazz, making for a most enriching musical journey.

In this journey, listeners will start out with Abel, a gorgeous melody rich with the sounds of a Spanish inspired classical guitar, flute, bass guitar, even maracas.  Sunny, mediterranean, and a little jazzy, the feeling remains throughout the CD, but merges more often with gentle jazz rhythms and a decidedly contemporary sound.  The overall impression is of a warm and vibrant collection of Old World meets New, making Altamira a project worthy of an earnest listen.

Want to win your own copy of Altamira?  We have TWO to give away! ($12.97 retail, each)

Or if you can’t wait…

Multiple Options for Entry:

1.) Just visit the Altamira CDBaby page and listen to a few samples in the left-hand column.  Tell me what you like about the music and why. (You may enter once a day.) Remember, leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active.

     Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway.

     Want to subscribe?  Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box on the left. (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post.  Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post. (If your comment doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry – I may have to approve it first.  My blog might think it’s spam but gosh darn, I certainly don’t!)

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry! (I’m dkmommy if you want to follow me.)

Feel free to do all four to gain several entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Thursday, May 14, 2009, to enter.

Click Here for More Giveaways

I’m a sucker for Latin jazz, especially the likes of Afro-Cuban and the sounds of the Charanga era.  Perhaps that’s why I’ve found myself lost in the sounds of Bomba, a latin-jazz group based out of Toronto, Canada.  The clean sounds of Cuban and improvisational jazz have been a real treat to my frazzled ears.  Mellow, crisp instrumentals, lively vocals and violin, and on-the-spot Latin congas and percussion give their latest CD, Cuatro Caminos, a winning sound that will appeal to a variety of jazz lovers.  

Bomba is led by percussionist Mario Allende and bassist Rubim de Toledo.  This CD also includes drummer Raul Tabera, violinist Aldo Aguirre, and singer Luis Emilio Rios.  What results is a phenomenal Latin group that has toured the world to great acclaim.  Bomba has even been heating things up globally, having played in the UK, Italy, Cuba, and even South Korea’s top international drumming festivals, but I’ve no doubt they’re just getting warmed up.  A musical force to keep your eye on!  

Ready to win your own copy of their latest, Cuatro Caminos?  Multiple chances to win listed below the video clip.

 

Multiple Options for Entry:

1.) Just watch the above video (from their previous CD Entre Sol y Luz) or visit their CDBaby page to hear clips, and tell me why you’d like to win Bomba! Cuatro Camino.  (You may enter once a day.) Remember, leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active.

     Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway.

     Want to subscribe?  Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box on the left. (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post.  Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post. (If your comment doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry – I may have to approve it first.  My blog might think it’s spam but gosh darn, I certainly don’t!)

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry! (I’m dkmommy if you want to follow me.)

Feel free to do all four to gain several entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Thursday, April 30, 2009, to enter.

Check out all current giveaways for both my blogs here.

Click Here for More Giveaways

Looking for some sexy music to warm things up for a dramatic evening?  QuinTango’s dynamic chamber tango music is certain to heat you up enough to steam the very windows of your casa.  This tango quintet has just released its fifth CD, Triunfal, and its sound is wonderfully elegant, hot, sexy – everything a tango should be.  The quintet is made up of two violins, a cello, a bass, and a piano.  They’ve performed live the world over and have a dedicated following.  QuinTango has even performed at a White House State Dinner in 1999 when President Clinton hosted the President of Argentina, his Excellency Carlos Saul Menem.  

Starting in Buenos Aires during the turn of the 20th century, the Tango became one of the great dances of the Golden Age and has seen quite a resurgence of late through the rediscovery of ballroom dance.  QuinTango celebrates that history with its vivid collection of music.  The songs vary from the more slow and restrained to the all-out exotic and passionate.  If you don’t know how to Tango at the beginning of the CD, you’ll be looking for classes by the end!  Triunfal is certainly a triumphant collection for any serious music lover (or perhaps any serious lover, period!)

From the Washington D.C. area, this dynamic group has won 5 Wammie Awards, D.C.’s local music award, for Best Latin Recording.  See why in this video, then tell me what you think to win your own copy of QuinTango’s Triunfal CD.

Multiple Options for Entry:

1.) Just watch the above video and tell me why you’d like to win QuinTango’s Triunfal (You may enter once a day.) Remember, leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active.

     Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway.

     Want to subscribe?  Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box on the left. (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post.  Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post. (If your comment doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry – I may have to approve it first.  My blog might think it’s spam but gosh darn, I certainly don’t!)

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry! (I’m dkmommy if you want to follow me.)

Feel free to do all four to gain several entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Thursday, April 2, 2009, to enter.

Check out all current giveaways for both my blogs here.

Click Here for More Giveaways

Few instruments are as beautiful on their own as the piano.  I grew up with a piano teacher for a mother, so naturally I took lessons too.  There was piano music in my house everyday, so it’s no wonder I find the sounds of this instrument to be soothing.  When set in front of pianist Dana Cunningham, the sounds this instrument produces are magical and relaxing.  Cunningham’s CD The Color of Light will transport listeners to a place of tranquility and peace.  

The music, all composed by Cunningham, has an Enya-like contemplative quality.  While the music focuses mostly on piano, occasionally a guitar, strings, or a voice play lightly into the pieces, adding another layer of warm color.  There is something lighthearted and comforting to The Color of Light.  If you love having some relaxing music in the background or perhaps a soundtrack to your quiet moments, this is certainly one to get for your special collection.  Dana Cunningham has a light touch and coaxes a vibrant quality from her music that will bring you back to The Color of Light again and again.

Want to win your own copy of The Color of Light by Dana Cunningham?  I have one to give away!

Multiple Options for Entry:

1.) Just visit Dana Cunningham’s Site, turn up your speakers, and listen.  (You’ll be hearing Leap of Faith.) Come back and explain to me why you like her music.  (You may enter once a day.) Remember, leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active.

     Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway.

     Want to subscribe?  Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box on the left. (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post.  Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post. (If your comment doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry – I may have to approve it first.  My blog might think it’s spam but gosh darn, I certainly don’t!)

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry! (I’m dkmommy if you want to follow me.)

Feel free to do all four to gain several entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Monday, March 30, 2009, to enter.

Check out all current giveaways for both my blogs here.

Click Here for More Giveaways

When you need good music and jazz is the answer of the day, try a little Tri Boro Trio.  Band leader and trombonist Rob Susman, with guitarist Ed MacEachen and Bass John Loehrke,  serve up a soothing and mellow jazz menu with the trio’s self-titled CD.  Many of the songs, written by Susman himself, feature the smooth sounds of his trombone as the lead.  Also featured are a couple Duke Ellington favorites such as “It Don’t Mean a Thing if You Ain’t Got That Swing”, and “In a Sentimental Mood”; both are fantastic arrangements with some very entertaining solos.  Having been a featured soloist with the Duke Ellington Legacy Band, Susman certainly knows his Ellington!  

Listening to the Tri Boro Trio, you might just forget you’ve got a CD in the player; instead you’ll be transported to a cozy little jazz bar where the music is hot and the evening is for relaxing.  Or perhaps dancing – tracks such as “Running with Scissors”, written by Susman, will make it hard to keep your feet still.  The way the guy can move that trombone slide, you may have a hard time concentrating on your dance moves, however.  Jazz lovers will want to catch the Tri Boro Trio in concert to see for themselves.  

If you can’t get to the concert, you should at least enjoy the CD.  Shoppers can purchase Tri Boro Trio at CDBaby for $9.99; or enter to win your own here at carp(e).  Rob Susman is giving away one copy to a carp(e) libris reviews reader!

Multiple Options for Entry:

1.) Just visit Tri Boro Trio’s CD Baby Page, turn up your speakers, play a few track samples in the lower right.  Come back and me why their sound interests you.  (You may enter once a day.) Remember, leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active.

     Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway.

     Want to subscribe?  Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box on the left. (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post.  Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post. (If your comment doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry – I may have to approve it first.  My blog might think it’s spam but gosh darn, I certainly don’t!)

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry! (I’m dkmommy if you want to follow me.)

Feel free to do all four to gain several entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Wednesday, March 25, 2009, to enter.

Check out all current giveaways for both my blogs here.

Click Here for More Giveaways

Qawwali:  a form of Sufi devotional music popular in South Asia, particularly in areas with a historically strong Muslim presence, such as southern Pakistan, and parts of India. (Wikipedia)

You’ve probably never heard anything like the Brooklyn Qawwali Party.  I know I never have.  Energetic, jazzy music with a Middle Eastern hook, BQP gives us a whirlwind of sound in their self-titled CD.  Celebrating the music of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, this collection features four intense tracks:  Mustt Mustt, Man Kunto Mavla, Beh Haadh Ramza Dhasdha, and Allah Hu.  

Who was Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan? He was a Pakistani musician famous for his qawwali music.  His traditional songs, put in the hands and the souls of BQP’s 14 capable and talented band members, results in a magical, heartfelt musical explosion.  Band founder and percussionist Brook Martinez became hooked on Nusrat’s music while attending the World Music Institute.  Martinez was struck by how closely the spiritual sounds were related to the jazz he loved.  He proves his point brilliantly through the arrangements performed by BQP. 

If you have eclectic tastes, if  you like  your music to take you places both global and spiritual, BQP is the place you want to go.  We can start you on that journey now – BQP is giving away a copy of their CD to one carp(e) libris reviews reader.  Please take a moment to visit the band’s site and listen to their sounds.  I want to hear what you think!

Or buy the BQP MP3 version here.

Multiple Options for Entry:

1.) Just visit BQP’s Website, turn up your speakersand explain to me why their sound interests you (You may enter once a day.) Remember, leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active.

     Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway.

     Want to subscribe?  Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box on the left. (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post.  Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post. (If your comment doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry – I may have to approve it first.  My blog might think it’s spam but gosh darn, I certainly don’t!)

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry! (I’m dkmommy if you want to follow me.)

Feel free to do all four to gain several entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Wednesday, March 18, 2009, to enter.

Check out all current giveaways for both my blogs here.

Click Here for More Giveaways

Today’s CD review takes us on a musical tour of the distant and otherworldly Tibet, melded with the beauty of India, to experience the music of Yoko.  Treasury of Jewels is Yoko’s first release.  Interestingly, this Canadian woman isn’t in the habit of just performing Tibetan mantra music.  Also a jazz singer who has sung R&B and hip-hop, Yoko’s first CD release is instead a testament to her faith.  Strongly rooted in the Tibetan Buddhist and Indian traditions of the mantra with the familiar low vocal intonations of Tibet as an occasional backup, listeners will be surprised to find Yoko’s love of jazz discreetly emerging and blending rather effortlessly.  I was pleasantly caught off guard at the occasional gentle fusion of jazz and far eastern music.

Yoko’s strongpoint no doubt is her beautiful one-of-a-kind voice, able to handle the foreign vocal maneuvers that frequently occur in the Tibetan and Indian styles.  Calming and peaceful, Yoko’s voice is backed by flutes, traditional Tibetan and Indian instruments, and gorgeous orchestrations that beckon the listener to stop and focus on simply being.

Would you like to win a copy of Treasury of Jewels?  One carp(e) libris reader will win!

Multiple Options for Entry:

1.) Just turn up your speakers and visit Yoko’s CDBaby Page. Listen to some music samples in the left-hand column and tell me what you most like about her music (You may enter once a day.) Remember, leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active.

     Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway.

     Want to subscribe?  Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box on the left. (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post.  Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post. (If your comment doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry – I may have to approve it first.  My blog might think it’s spam but gosh darn, I certainly don’t!)

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry! (I’m dkmommy if you want to follow me.)

Feel free to do all four to gain several entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Monday, March 16, 2009, to enter.

Check out all current giveaways for both my blogs here.

Click Here for More Giveaways

Sam Lamont’s self-titled folk blues CD is a taste of sheer brilliance sure to inspire spontaneous fits of joy.  Pure, clean accoustics, earthy down-home vocals, and a musician who can do it all.  Lamont’s style is an easy, free-flowing sound with fantastic harmonies which gives the listener a break from the fast-paced soundtrack to life most uf us are accustomed to.  Lamont writes some clever lyrics as well, reflecting the things we all can relate to – broken hearts, worrying about wasting life’s opportunities, enjoying the perfect day with the perfect girl.  Hist oft-times Dylanesque stylings will have you lost in singing along.  Track #10, Nebo, gets me belting it out every time, now that I’ve heard the CD numerous times.  Many of these songs already feel like old friends.

Probably the most impressive aspect of Lamont’s feel-good music occurs when you realize he’s every guitar, bass, vocal, harmonica within the Cd.  he composed every song – a one-man folk and blues band, the production of such a work may just make you feel like quite the underachiever.  But no need to fret over your possible lack of self-motivation – just pop the Sam Lamont CD back in the player, grab a spot of sunshine on your porch, and press the play button again.  When you’ve got this one playing, everything’s gonna be alright.

Options for Multiple Entries:

1.) Just visit Sam Lamont’sCD Baby Page and give his songs a listen (down in the left-hand column).  Come back here to tell me what you like about it.  (You may comment once a day.) Remember,leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active.

     Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway.

     Want to subscribe?  Just enter your email address in the “Subscribe” box on the left. (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post.  Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post. (If your comment doesn’t show up right away, don’t worry – I may have to approve it first.  My blog might think it’s spam but gosh darn, I certainly don’t!)

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry! (I’m dkmommy if you want to follow me.)

Feel free to do all four to gain several entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Monday, March 9, 2009, to enter.

Check out all current giveaways for both my blogs here.