Neil Tatar, guitarist/pianist, is a graduate of Music for People’s Musicianship and Leadership Program who currently serves on Music for People’s board. In his new CD Learning to Fly, Neil “winged in” inspiration from memories of life experiences, meaningful moments and changes that shaped his world. Each composition came from the heart expressing personal life stories. He wrote 9 compositions of smooth gliding music with jazzy colors on the piano and guitar.Neil also spread his wings by orchestrating and leading some of the world’s finest musicians into the compositions. Neil was joined by Paul Winter Consort member Eugene Friesen on cello, Jill Haley on English horn, and bassist Tony Levin, who has performed with Peter Gabriel and King Crimson. Noah Wilding added ethereal voice and Premik Rusell Tubbs, soprano sax, has performed with Carlos Santana and John McLaughlin. Other musicians include: Jeff Haynes, percussion, Charles Bisharat, violin, Michael Manring, bass and Grammy award winning guitarist, Will Ackerman.
How did Learning to Fly take flight? After Neil’s first award winning CD, Where Did the Time Go (2013), with cellist David Darling, Neil contacted Will Ackerman, guitarist and founder of Windham Hill Records. Will expressed immediate interest in Neil’s composing and playing after listening to his CD, and they subsequently had some email exchanges and phone calls before they met face to face. They both felt a strong creative connection, and the evolution of a CD evolved. During the process, Will had high standards and expectations, yet was completely supportive. Working along with Tom Eaton, the highly acclaimed sound engineer at Will’s Imaginary Road Studios, they produced Learning To Fly. The recording process was demanding and highly detailed but the results were well worth the effort. Neil wrote and arranged his music to include 9 different instrumentalists on the album. The theme of Learning to Fly, portrayed beautifully through the music, is about coming to a new turn in the journey of life. Neil has aviated that turn, flown from the roost and is now soaring through this magnificent CD.
You can purchase downloads of Learning To Fly on CD Baby.
Reviewed by Lynn Miller