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Soundcheck Live Releases Multi-artist Cover of ‘Let It Be’ to Benefit MusiCares Relief Fund

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Soundcheck Live Releases Multi-artist Cover of ‘Let It Be’ to Benefit MusiCares Relief Fund

With the support of the MusiCares Foundation, the team behind Soundcheck Live is bringing together 68 of the brightest stars in the music world to deliver a stirring performance of “Let It Be” for a good cause.

The performance will feature Avril Lavigne, Nuno Bettencourt, Orianthi, Phil X, Gary Cherone, and dUg Pinnick, as well as a long list of brilliant musicians, vocalists, and engineers who have performed and worked alongside the likes of Lady Gaga, Aretha Franklin, Ariana Grande, and many more.

BASS LINEUP INCLUDES:
dUg PINNICK – King’s X, KXM
STU HAMM – Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, Caifanes
ASHLEY REEVE – Cher, Filter, Adam Lambert
MARTY O’BRIEN – Lita Ford, Kelly Clarkson, Celine Dion
JERRY JEMMOTT – King Curtis, Aretha Franklin, B.B. King
DEREK FRANK – Shania Twain, Gwen Stefani
JOE PESSIA – Steelheart, Dramagods, Tantric
JENNIFER JO OBERLE – Five For Fighting, Vertical Horizon, Air Supply

With the song and video (available on May 12th on all digital streaming services and Soundcheck Live’s YouTube page), the musicians, vocalists, and engineers involved hope to raise money for music industry professionals impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, as well as offer up inspiration at a time when the world needs it most.

Founded in 2016 by Avril Lavigne’s musical director, Steve Ferlazzo, Soundcheck Live is a monthly all-star jam featuring national/international recording artists, touring sideman and local L.A. entertainers. Founded for musicians and music lovers alike, the concept kicked off as a way for well-known performers and up-and-coming stars to showcase their skills and network with other artists.

When the COVID-19 pandemic shuttered all live music venues in California, including Soundcheck live’s home venue, Lucky Strike Live in Hollywood, CA, Ferlazzo wanted to bring together these artists to be a part of something larger than themselves and give back to the community.

He sought out the MusicCares Foundation for the benefit, as they had set up a relief fund specifically for musicians, engineers, producers, stagehands, and other industry professionals experiencing financial hardship.

“We chose ‘Let It Be’ as a song of hope in uncertain times.” Ferlazzo continues, “I like to think of this project as an entire three-hour Soundcheck Live show condensed into one five-minute song that will offer people some inspiration and help when they need it most.”

Fundraising efforts for donations as well as auction items by some of the more notable performers will be hosted through www.charitystars.com.

OTHER LET IT BE PERFORMER CREDITS

DRUMS:
GLEN SOBEL – Alice Cooper, Hollywood Vampires, Richie Sambora
MIKE MANGINI – Dream Theater, Extreme, Solo Artist
KEVIN “KFigg” FIGUEIREDO – Extreme, Dramagods
CHAD WRIGHT – Bruce Hornsby & the Noisemakers, The Jacksons
CHRIS REEVE – Avril Lavigne, Tom Morello, Filter
MIKE BENNETT – Richie Kotzen, Hilary Duff, Steve Stevens
RANDY COOKE – Smash Mouth, Gone West, Dave Stewart
CHRISTIAN HOGAN – RZA, Rose’s Pawn Shop, Faulkner

PERCUSSION:
RODNEY HOWARD – Avril Lavigne, Gavin Degraw, Regina Spektor
RYAN BROWN – Dweezil Zappa

KEYS:
STEVE FERLAZZO – Avril Lavigne, Soundcheck Live, Dramagods
BRIAN LONDON – Bruno Mars, Lady Gaga, Rihanna
MICHAEL BLUESTEIN – Foreigner, Boz Scaggs
JAMES KING – Fitz and the Tantrums, Jeff Goldblum
KOREL TUNADOR – Rob Thomas, Katy Perry, Goo Goo Dolls
MIKE MANGAN – Big Organ Trio, Glenn Hughes
SVEN MARTIN – Jonathan Davis, t.A.T.u., Liz Phair
DAVE KERZNER –  In Continuum, Sound of Contact
ROBBIE GENETT – Fuel, Everclear, Nick Lachey
ALEXANDER BURKE – Billy Ray Cyrus, Ben Lee, Jill Sobuel

GUITARS:
NUNO BETTENCOURT – Extreme, Generation Axe, Rihanna
PHIL X – Phil X, Phil X & The Drills, Bon Jovi
ORIANTHI – Michael Jackson, Alice Cooper, Solo Artist
STEVE FEKETE – America, Gwen Stefani, Avril Lavigne
JOE AUGELLO – Robin Thicke, Jennifer Hudson, Backstreet Boys
JOEY SYKES – The Babys, Honey River, Coward
FERNANDO PERDOMO – Echo In The Canyon, The Dirty Diamond, Dave Kerzner
BARRY POINTER – Hollywood Roses, Hillbilly Herald
LUIS GIL BETTENCOURT – Maria Bettencourt
DAVID IMMERMAN – Avril Lavigne, Goldfinger, Juliet Simms
AUGUST ZADRA – Dennis DeYoung & the Music of Styx, Waiting for Monday
DAN ELLIS – Avril Lavigne, Glassjaw, Fender Play
DEVIN BRONSON – Avril Lavigne, Sebastian Bach, David Cook

BACKGROUND VOCALS:
ANNETTE MARIE FRANK – Axs TV Worlds Greatest tribute bands, Soundcheck Live
LISA MARGAROLI –  Lou Gramm, Linda Perry, Seal
ANGELA MICHAEL – Rod Stewart, Disney’s Kim Possible TV Show, Get Him To The Greek
FELICE HERNANDEZ – Oingo Boingo Former Members, Hilary Duff, Pitch Perfect 2
HOLLY BISAHA – The Babys, Stevie Wonder, Bang Tango
MARIA BETTENCOURT – Solo Artist
MARK LENNON – Venice, Roger Waters

STRINGS:
ELIZA JAMES – Burt Bacharach, Paul Anka, Quartet 405
DANICA PINNER – Avril Lavigne, Jonas Brothers, deadmau5
REBECCA SCHLAPPICH-CHARLES – Mariachi El Bronx, Mariachi Divas, Quartet405
RACHEL GRACE – Ariana Grande, Foo Fighters, Rhye
GINNY LUKE – Britney Spears, Shawn Mendes, Meat Loaf
KINGA BACIK – Eminem, Camilla Cabello, Foo Fighters

HORNS:
JON MANNESS – The Red Line Horns, Gloria Trevi, Alejandra Guzmán
ALEXANDER MATHIAS – Amy Winehouse, Gloria Trevi

VOCALISTS:
AVRIL LAVIGNE
NUNO BETTENCOURT – Extreme, Generation Axe, Rihanna
GARY CHERONE – Extreme, Hurtsmile
CARL RESTIVO – Tom Morello, Perry Farrell’s Satellite Party, Rihanna
JOHN BISAHA – The Babys, Raiding the Rock Vault, BISAHA
GABRIELA – Solo Artist
TOMMY DEMPSEY – Solo Artist
LEAH MARTIN-BROWN – Evol Walks

ENGINEERS:
MATTHEW KING ROSS, Audio Engineer: Eliza James -Violin
ADAM BARTOW – Audio Engineer: Tommy Dempsey – Vocals

MIXED BY:
PAUL HAGER

MASTERING BY:
MAOR APPELBAUM at Maor Appelbaum Mastering
(Yes, Faith No More, Meatloaf)

VIDEO EDITOR:
MIKE SAVAGE

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Bassist/Music Educator Andreas Farmakalidis Candidate for LAUSD District 3

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Bassist:Music Educator Andreas Farmakalidis Candidate for LAUSD District 3

Bassist/Music Educator Andreas Farmakalidis Candidate for LAUSD District 3: A Champion for Music and Arts in Schools…

Andreas Farmakalidis, a renowned music educator and business owner, will be on the ballot for LAUSD District 3 School Board. As an independent candidate, Farmakalidis brings a fresh perspective and a passionate commitment to revitalizing music and arts programs in schools. With a proven track record of success and a vision for a brighter educational future, Farmakalidis aims to provide every child with a well-rounded education. Andreas Farmakalidis is not just an exceptional educator and business owner; he is also an accomplished movie composer, having contributed music to several renowned films.

His talent and dedication earned him a prestigious Spotify and Hollywood Music Award. Beyond music, Farmakalidis enjoys cooking, specializing in Greek and Cypriot cuisine. He is happily married to Alexis Lopez, a former American Idol finalist, and together they embrace the joy of parenting their two-year-old daughter, Mavis. Known for his unwavering hard work, dedication, and passion, Farmakalidis has always championed causes that are close to his heart, especially education. 

With a diverse and vibrant community in LAUSD District 3, Farmakalidis recognizes the unique challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. His commitment to this district is rooted in the belief that every child, regardless of their background or circumstances, deserves a high-quality education that equips them with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in life. 

“I have witnessed firsthand the transformative power of education in the lives of young people and the broader community,” says Farmakalidis. “It is our responsibility to invest in our schools, teachers, and students. By ensuring safe and welcoming learning environments and providing necessary resources and support to our educators, we can achieve equity and inclusivity in our educational system. 

Every child should have a fair shot at achieving their dreams.” Furthermore, Farmakalidis is dedicated to fostering strong partnerships between schools, parents, businesses, and the broader community. Recognizing that collaboration and engagement are essential to address the unique needs of the district, he aims to create opportunities for learning, growth, and success for all. In addition to his commitment to academic excellence, Farmakalidis firmly believes in the importance of the arts in education. 

He envisions a District 3 where every child has access to a comprehensive arts education, regardless of their background or neighborhood. By investing in music, visual arts, theater, and dance programs, and providing students with the necessary tools and resources, Farmakalidis aims to inspire creativity, foster innovation, and provide a powerful means of self-expression. The arts play a crucial role in developing critical thinking skills, enhancing cultural awareness, and building empathy by exploring diverse perspectives. “I am running for LAUSD District 3 because I believe that, with the right leadership, we can make our schools even better, provide our children with a brighter future, and strengthen our community as a whole,” says Farmakalidis.

 “Together, we can work towards a brighter, more equitable future for all our students.” In the upcoming election, LAUSD District 3 voters have a choice to make. Farmakalidis stands out as the only candidate who prioritizes bringing music and arts back to schools, recognizing the profound impact they have on students’ development and growth. The stakes are high in this election. The right candidate can shape the future of education in LAUSD District 3, ensuring that every child has access to a high-quality education and the opportunity to thrive. Andreas Farmakalidis’s proven dedication, commitment, and passion make him the ideal candidate to lead the way.

For more information on Andreas Farmakalidis and his campaign, please visit www.lausd3.com 

Follow him on social media @afarmakalidis.

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Freekbass Crowned TikTok LIVE Fest Finalist

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TikTok LIVE Fest

Hometown bassist and frontman, Freekbass is representing Cincinnati as a Top 30 Award Winner for TikTok LIVE Fest, with a ceremony set to take place in January 2024, in Los Angeles, CA.

TikTok LIVE Fest is a global event across 50+ countries and regions that recognizes and celebrates top creators. The contest took place from December 1st-16th, with each talent accruing points based on support from their communities during their live streams. What began as thousands of streamers competing worldwide, was reduced to a cut of 300, then 150, and ultimately the final Top 30 were crowned as the winners. Freekbass, who just started streaming on TikTok in March of this year, placed as Top 24 creator, globally. To give context, social media influencer and TikTok veteran, Jeffree Star, placed third in the same competition. All Top 30 winners receive airfare, hotel and travel expenses to appear at the TikTok LIVE Fest Awards Ceremony, along with other prizes.

Freekbass performs a one-man show, creating live music with his signature bass-playing, and also plays guitar, percussion, keys and vocoder, using DJ beats and samples, while staying continually engaged with the viewers via chat. He accredits his rapid rise in popularity to his loyal community, lovingly dubbed the “Freek Squad”. To meet them virtually and check out a nightly Freekbass live stream, visit TikTok.com/@freekbass most evening, starting at 10pm ET.

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Immortal Sÿnn Welcomes Former Grim Reaper Bassist Chaz Grimaldi

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Immortal Sÿnn Welcomes Former Grim Reaper Bassist Chaz Grimaldi

Immortal Sÿnn Welcomes Former Grim Reaper Bassist Chaz Grimaldi…

Denver-based heavy metal group, Immortal Sÿnn, proudly announces the inclusion of Chaz Grimaldi, former bass player of Steve Grimmett’s Grim Reaper, as the latest addition to their dynamic lineup. This development follows Sean Ryan’s departure from the band four months ago. With Chaz on board, Immortal Sÿnn is forging ahead, actively resuming live performances in the Denver area and strategically planning a forthcoming United States tour for the summer of 2024.

Chaz Grimaldi, an accomplished bassist originally from Silver Spring, MD, brings an impressive musical history to the fold. With a prolific career that notably includes his role in the 80s NWOBHM legends Grim Reaper, renowned for their iconic “See You In Hell” (2008-2016 & 2019), and Dave Lombardo’s Grip Inc. (1993), Chaz’s journey has been one of remarkable experiences. Reflecting on his global tours with distinguished musicians, he shares, “Having been fortunate to tour the world playing with some of the best musicians has been an incredible blessing in my life. The lifelong friendships of people I’ve met and the incredible places I’ve seen has been truly amazing.” Chaz’s recent endeavors with Tampa-based band Jezabelle garnered significant online attention. Now, as he joins forces with Denver’s Immortal Sÿnn, he eagerly anticipates contributing his prowess to the collective.

Chaz states, “I’m excited about the opportunity to play with Immortal Synn! The song catalog kicks ass and has all of the elements of METAL that I love to play. I look forward to being a part of this incredible band!”

Immortal Sÿnn recently unleashed their latest single, “Lady Nocturna,” on August 4th. Currently collaborating once again with engineer Nick Nodurft at Rusty Sun Audio in Parker, CO, the band is immersed in recording a 5-song EP titled “Hellspawn.” The EP is set to release on September 15th across major streaming platforms and digital stores, with physical CDs to follow.

Reflecting on the addition of Chaz Grimaldi, Tony Z, guitarist of Immortal Sÿnn, affirms, “We all knew Chaz was our guy when he came to the audition and actually knew all of the material and was well-prepared. He didn’t just ‘look at’ the songs we had sent him and fake his way through them like so many people in the local scene do when it comes to auditions.”

For fervent fans of bands such as Grim Reaper, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, and Megadeth, Immortal Sÿnn’s signature blend of heavy metal elements continues to resonate and excite.

Visit online at immortalsynn.com

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Listen to the First New Recording from The Fusion Syndicate in Over 10 Years!

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Listen to the First New Recording from The Fusion Syndicate in Over 10 Years!

In 2012, the world of fusion rock/jazz was shook by the introduction of a new supergroup of unparalleled musical virtuosos who came together under one umbrella for a blockbuster studio album.

Both the group and its debut album were called simply The Fusion Syndicate, and it featured some of the biggest names in fusion including members of Mahavishnu Orchestra, Yellowjackets, Brand X, Soft Machine, and Spyro Gyra PLUS Yes, Dream Theater, King Crimson, Tool, Porcupine Tree, Hawkwind and more! Now a new single is released today with the first new recording from The Fusion Syndicate in over 10 years!

That new single, “The Bottle,” is unique in several ways. For starters, it is the Fusion Syndicate’s first ever cover song, a trippy, groovy version of jazz poet Gil Scott-Heron’s 1973 dramatic story of alcohol abuse in the inner city. Second, the track is the first to incorporate R&B and soul music flavors into the band’s repertoire driven by a stellar vocal from intergalactic superstar Bootsy Collins. In addition, joining Collins is multi-instrumentalist Brian Jackson, who was a member of Gil Scott-Heron’s band and performed on the original recording of “The Bottle.” Here, Jackson recreates the vibe 1970s soul jazz while bringing a modern flair that perfectly suits The Fusion Syndicate’s style.

Could this be the first song from a forthcoming full-length album from The Fusion Syndicate? Stay tuned in to The Fusion Syndicate revolution to learn more!

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Eduardo Del Signore Calls Attention to Climate and Social Change

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Eduardo Del Signore Calls Attention to Climate and Social Change

Eduardo Del Signore’s A Call 2Peace Foundation Calls Attention to Climate and Social Change, Using Tools from Mojave Audio…

A Grammy-nominated artist with a career spanning over 50 years and numerous collaborations with artists such as Jon Anderson of Yes and Brazilian legend Milton Nascimiento, Eduardo Del Signore has found new inspiration by combining his love of music to support climate and social change. Recently, Signore created a platform for artistic expression called A Call 2Peace foundation, designed to bring awareness to other organizations and the work they’re doing through concerts, events and fundraisers.  

“A Call 2Peace is a reminder that we all possess peace in our hearts, and that it’s our responsibility to visit this each day and enjoy it, embrace it and live by it,” Signore says. At the start of the pandemic, the foundation began a food recovery initiative that collected ½ million pounds of food from supermarkets, which were taken to distribution centers. The foundation also puts on the Tuesday Night Jazz concert Series in Santa Monica where Signore uses the MA-D. “I use the MA-D for all live performances, I compared it against the standard and now I can’t go back. The Mojave is so much better,” he says. 

Signore was interested in adding a Mojave MA-301fet mic into his workflow to be a dependable microphone that captures the true sound to represent his instrument. Since adding the mic to his kit, Signore has recorded an opera singer, violin, Spanish guitar, viola, cello, and more and finds the Mojave microphone to be user-friendly and an ideal solution that works perfectly for his many applications. 

Music to engage climate change 

Signore has an ongoing collaboration with ClimateMusic in San Francisco, an organization that synergizes the talent and expertise of work-class scientists, composers, musicians, artists and technology visionaries focused on engaging audiences on the issue of climate change. The organization commissioned a composition from Signore that focuses on three primary aspects: the effects of the industrial revolution to the present, and then projecting into the future with two different outcomes. “The first scenario looks at the future — if we carry on business as usual. The second looks at if we become active in certain areas, and how that could influence climate change,” Signore says. 

As part of his audio toolkit, Signore deployed the MA-D and other mics from Mojave to record the music. “I look for the instruments and accessories that allow me to express with the utmost clarity what I have to say. Whether it is for singing, or an instrument or recording someone else. For this project, I used the MA-301 fet microphone for all vocals and acoustic instruments. This microphone is so transparent and true to the source. It is the perfect portal for any vocals or instrument that I want to record,” he says. 

For more information and detailed specifications, please visit: mojaveaudio.com

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