Jazz Group With A Twist
Guitarist Tung Le fronts Saigon Club, a jazz quartet with something you might not expect. Band member Mark King (aka DJ Rac One) plays turntables, as you might expect in rap or hip hop. The bands three song demo CD-R features an acid jazz number, a Latin and an extended Monk/Messiaen influenced composition which features free improvisation, modern harmony and bebop based improvisation. Saigon Club, therefore, sets itself up it's own unique musical territory with this mix, and Le's guitar work is the glue that holds it all together. Percussionist Brian Citak and bass player Nick Czarnogorski round out the band, and remarkably, all the members of Saigon Club are strong musicians in their own right. The strength of their demo shows the band headed in the right direction as they work towards their first full length CD. Remember the name Tung Le -- it may surprise you where this talented musician chooses to display his worthy guitar abilities. Saigon Club were originally profiled in the June-July, 2001 edition of The Undiscovered.
Saigon Club is the brainchild of guitarist Tung Le, who works simultaneously in various musical worlds including jazz, Latin, urban, rock, 20th century classical and traditional Vietnamese music. Tung has been playing for 16 years, starting in various rock groups, then attending the Mohawk College Applied Music program, with jazz guitar as his principle instrument. He worked as a full time musician from 1990-95, performing, touring and teaching. Tung held a house guitar position at Toronto's prestigious Saigon Club and also worked in two world music bands. He also completed the McMaster University Music program in 1999, with a major in Music Education. Tung still teaches and is working with several jazz groups.
A full length Saigon Club CD is scheduled for release in August, with a series of live showcases in New York City to promote the album.
6-241 Mohawk Rd. East
Hamilton, ON L9A 2H5
Real New Jersey Hard Rock
Offering challenging yet accessible music which is approximately equal parts hard rock and progressive, New Jersey's Ironia has released their debut CD, A Granite Scale. Guitarist/producer Nick Delonas propels the group, which walks the musical tightrope, keeping the driving music on edge at all times, without losing the audience in the process. Delonas rarely, if ever, plays a stock or expected guitar solo -- all his six-string excursions are creatively crushing or frenetically fuzzed out. In fact, the bulk of his guitar work can be commended for straying into alternative streams of sonic texture (check out "Rhino Racing" for an instrumental example of this). This kind of attention to vision -- where music is purposefully designed to set itself apart from the usual radio fodder -- is refreshing and should be encouraged and supported wherever possible. If a hard rock, progressive mix is up your alley, check out A Granite Scale. Ironia were originally profiled in the August-September, 2001 edition of The Undiscovered.
Founding guitarist Nick Delonas (who studied composition at the Berklee College of Music) had difficulty initially finding musicians who wanted to push the hard rock envelope without breaking it. Maverick drummer Jim Rilko was his first recruit, and talented singer Paul Zartler was the next to join. It took two more years, but finally studio bassist Art Hengst and keyboardist/producer Chris Midkiff signed on as well. The veteran players immediately infused the group with additional creativity. Since recording their debut, two songs from the CD broke the top five on the Rock and Alternative charts at SoundClick.com. Audio files of their music have been downloaded from their web site over 20,000 times over the past year.
Ironia plans to work hard to distribute their debut CD and spread the news about the band's direction and musical goals.
Ironia C/O Nick Delonas
P.O. Box 167
Ironia, NJ 07845
Web site: www.ironia.net