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.

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Are you the Tito Puente type?  Like to live your life to the beat of hot latin rhythms?  Then it’s time to get yourself plugged into the Latin Giants of Jazz.  I’ve been mamboing my way through the house and down the street to the sounds of two of their CD’s: Ven Baila Conmigo! and Trip to Mamboland.  Both CD’s play homage to Tito Puente, and they do it masterfully.  In fact, Ven Baila Conmigo! includes several all-stars from the former Tito Puente Orchestra.  There’s just something about the Puente musical style that won’t let you sit still, from the moment you press play.  Each CD contains 13 tracks, so you know you’ll be moving for awhile! 

Perfect background music for a tropical summer party, The Latin Giants of Jazz goes well with mojitos and Cuba Libres, friends and lively conversation – or turn it up louder and rip up the dance floor!  Don’t believe me?  Just check out this video of No Me Molesto shot live at Birdland, NYC.  

Incidentally, you can hear No Me Molesto on their Trip to Mamboland CD on sale at CDBaby.  And of course for more Latin Jazz fun, be sure to check out their CD Ven Baila Conmigo!  Your parties will never be the same again.  Nor will your dancing shoes…

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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.

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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

Looking for something different to feed your jazz addiction?  Patrick Bebey may be just what you’ve been craving.  Smooth jazz beats, Bebey’s mellow flowing vocals, and a delicious blend of African rooted musical sounds give the CD Oa Na Mba a special something you won’t find in just any jazz.  The instruments used in Patrick Bebey’s work are probably a variety you’ve never even heard of: the sanza (or thumb piano), talking drums, the sabar, and pygmy flutes.  But when you add them to the more familiar pianos, bass, and trumpets, the mix is something worth giving a serious listen.

Bebey has no small musical resume.  He studied classical music at the Paris Conservatoire and is self-taught in Brazilian, jazz, and African music.  For a sold-out “Africa at the Opera” production at the Philharmony in Cologne, he performed a piece for the Pygmy flute and choir, together with Ladysmith Black Mambazo a Grammy Award winning South African a capella singing group.  I can only imagine what an impact that must have had on the audience!

I can tell you the impact Oa Na Mba has had on me, however.  I’ve listened numerous times and am happy to have discovered Bebey.  His style is relaxed, upbeat, and uplifting.  A truly enjoyable work filled with jazz  sounds both familiar and new; an unexpected pleasure on every track!

Listen to Patrick Bebey

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