Sunday, November 3, 2013

CD Review – 600 Years in a Moment, by Fiona Joy Hawkins

Fiona Joy Hawkins' latest release is a world music album in the truest sense. Not only does it feature musical influences from around the planet, it was also recorded the world over, including Newcastle in Hawkins' native Australia; Los Angeles; New York City; Bremen and Portland, Maine; Halifax, Canada; and co-producer Will Ackerman's Imaginary Road Studios in Vermont.

Featuring Hawkins playing an Australian Stuart and Sons handmade piano, the CD contains a world-class lineup of session all-stars, including Rebecca Daniel, Eugene Friesen, Tony Levin, Jeff Haynes, Heather Rankin, Marc Shulman, Todd Boston, Paul Jarman, Michael Jackson, Phil Aaberg, and Alfredo Rolando Ortiz, among many others.

As always, Hawkins maintains her high standards of performance and creativity, with elegant compositions and accomplished playing that brings out their intricate beauty. The other musicians also provide excellent backup and support, without ever overshadowing Hawkins' piano. At the same time, Hawkins gives her cohorts ample space to embellish her vision with their unique, artistic voices. The result is a nice balance between soloing and accompaniment.

Those who appreciate fine, tasteful music, as well as aficionados of piano, can't go wrong with this disc.

--Raj Manoharan

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