The road to “Jazzy Lounge”.
20 years ago , on July 1996, I was leaving Japan , where I had just spend 7 years, and moved to London.
Japan was an incredible adventure. I started my music career there , signing record deals with Virgin & Nippon Columbia. recording my debut album at Peter Gabriel Real world studios and meeting up with the man himself. Releasing all together 3 albums in Japan and also making my first steps into media & Tv music. I did and learned a lot in Japan. But I had to move on to learn new things and London was the place I would continue growing.
In Japan I was producing & releasing pop songs. I would play guitar & already world influenced instrumental music in clubs around tokyo and write instrumental music for Tv & media but never had the idea to actually release it.
Landing in London in 1996 was a real musical challenge. From day one I understood that if I wanted to find my place there I had to produce something they had not heard before. The search for what I now call “Jazzy Lounge” had started.
I went back to my instrumental work and started developing it … And I wrote Sirocco an “Arabiant” (as it got labeled later) fusion track. That track started it all. All of a sudden media & TV people where calling me, I did my first compilations, signed a new record deal with a UK label. Ethno fusion was just coming up in Europe and Sirocco came at the right time in the right place.
I was onto something and I work to develop that Ethno Lounge sound.
I also wanted to work on more guitar, jazzy, orientated music and was secretly working on my first instrumental album “Secret Garden”. A guitar , smooth jazz orientated album very much influenced by Artists such as Pat Metheny.
“Secret garden” got released in Japan by Nippon Columbia. Back In London I was enjoying the success of Sirocco and working on more world projects such as “Radar”, establishing myself more & more as a fusion lounge producer in Europe.
With Secret Garden I realised I could release guitar jazzy instrumental music. But I had to give it an edge and find my sound.
The result was “Show me the way”. On this album for the first time, I was using World music as I had done with Sirocco but this time mixed together with Jazzy harmonies and guitar solos all wrapped up with lounge production. Also moving onto playing nylon guitar was giving me a more Mediterranean touch. I was getting there.
I left London in July 2004 to Sweden and from then started focusing more on that Jazzy side in me, leaving world music behind for a while.
Also working on my Jazz guitar technic. I did not want to be a jazz guitarist but I had to see how far I could go with this.
From this came out “Turning Inside”. No world music at all in this album but Jazz influences all over the place, also focusing more on the Lounge down tempo sound.
“Someday I will” is I think a clear indication of the path I was taking.
Then came “The long way home”. The title itself says it all. I was on my way to find the sound I really wanted to produce.
On “At the end of the street”, I invited my friend Jazz guitarist Marc Antoine to play the lead guitar and Ravi Prasad with whom a few years back I had produced an Indian fusion album to perform some Indian vocals. From there it was clear that mixing World, Lounge and jazz influences was the way to do it.
I recorded this album traveling around Europe looking for a place to land. Everywhere I went I had my laptop and portable studio with me. And I was recording.
“At the end of the street” was written in Rome and recorded in London and mixed in paris. Hello in Paris, Moonlight in the south of France. A new beginning in Sweden. It is funny to loo back now and realise that moving around not really knowing where to settle , I actually found who I really was musically.
In Cielo, The nightfly , “We’ll meet again” , my latest productions, or the new version of “At the end of the street” I have finally produced the sound and style I was after finding the receipe, the right balance between Ethno, Lounge and jazz . Music is like cooking. To much of one ingredient and your dish is going to taste completely different … even bad .
I could have presented this compilation with a chronologic order , but putting the tracks together I realised they all had that same flavour. almost 20 years had passed between “A bord de toi” and “The Nightfly” but the energy and soul behind those tracks are the same. I just felt to rework 3 tracks as I was not 100 % happy with the original production and arrangement and remastered the whole album to give it an even better sound. “Something about me” had never been released before because it would not fit in any of my projects.
With the CD comes a book of photos I took around Europe to illustrate the tracks I was recording.
I first started to make photos to use as covers for the single or albums releases . But in some occasions the photo came before the music and inspired the song.
“Jazzy Lounge” is not just a compilation of tracks , it is a 20 years musical search & journey that took me around the world looking for the musician I really wanted to be.
Enjoy “Jazzy Lounge” and lets see where music will now take us …