The Trick Is To Keep Going

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Island album available at cdbaby, iTunes, Spotify, Amazon

by on Sep.07, 2017, under Music

When Pulse was finally finished at the end of 1970, three of the members moved to Manhattan, Beau Segal, Peter Neri and Paul Rosano. We started writing in a slightly different direction from the original blues-oriented Pulse and the quartet that followed. It’s more of a pop direction but there are elements of rock, country rock and blues, jazz and even yes Island music. We recorded these tracks at Blue Rock and Capitol and signed a publishing deal with Sam Gordon through the Grossman-Glotzer management office. Sam set up the studio time and was really quite supportive. He even managed to get Todd Rundgren to come down to Blue Rock and help us produce three of the tunes in this collection. It was a cool ride. You can purchase this album or individual tracks at cdbaby.com

The album is also available on iTunes, Spotify, Amazon and all of cdbaby’s digital partners.

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Island album released at cdbaby

by on Sep.07, 2017, under Music


When Pulse was finally finished at the end of 1970, three of the members moved to Manhattan, Beau Segal, Peter Neri and Paul Rosano. We started writing in a slightly different direction from the original blues-oriented Pulse and the quartet that followed. It’s more of a pop direction but there are elements of rock, country rock and blues, jazz and even yes Island music. We recorded these tracks at Blue Rock and Capitol and signed a publishing deal with Sam Gordon through the Grossman-Glotzer management office. Sam set up the studio time and was really quite supportive. He even managed to get Todd Rundgren to come down to Blue Rock and help us produce three of the tunes in this collection. It was a cool ride. You can purchase this album or individual tracks at cdbaby.com

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Napi Browne’s Love You Everyday on cdbaby

by on Aug.08, 2017, under Music

The single Love You Everyday by Napi Browne has been released over at CDBaby.com The track is a funk-rock, pop-oriented tune with jazz and Latin influences. Written and sung by bassist Paul Rosano, the track features two outstanding guitar solos, the first by Nick Bagnasco, the second Dan Gulino, a trio of stellar background singers, Jayne Olderman and Peggy and Sarah Heath and some very funky drumming and congas by George Wilson.

https://store.cdbaby.com/Artist/NapiBrowne

 

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Pulse album remastered with bonus tracks

by on Jul.01, 2016, under Music

The Pulse album has been released at CDBaby.com, remastered with six bonus tracks and new cover art. The bonus tracks were intended for the group’s second album. Click below to buy the album or individual tracks. Enjoy!

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Napi: Love You Every Day, Background Singers Extraordinaire

by on Mar.01, 2016, under Music

NapiArt Small 530

Love You Ever Day was a tune I wrote in 1977 and was one of the first that Napi Browne recorded. To be exact, it was the third song we recorded during a home session over a few days during the summer of ’77 in the basement apartment of guitarist Nick Bagnasco (Nicky Nasko).

We had a control room set up in the furnace room of Nick’s house, and used my TEAC 3340S four-track machine along with a Ludwig mixing console that was also our PA mixer, along with a variety of mics, some borrowed, to record the proceedings. At one point Nick had a mic in the oven in the main part of the apartment to record his guitar. We cleared out his bedroom to set up a vocal booth, and we had guitars, bass and drums scattered throughout over the course of the two or three days. Complete chaos!

Still, this track has a very clean sound to it, some tasty guitar playing by Nick and Dan Gulino, our other lead guitarist, and a very funky percussion track by the group’s second drummer George Wilson, who had joined the group in late 1976 after Richie Catalano left the group.

It also benefits from an extraordinary group of background singers that included Jayne Olderman and Sarah and Peggy Heath. We were so lucky to have them join us on the vocal overdubs and their parts throughout are amazing. Just what I wanted for this tune, and it was a kick singing with them.

This was a bit of a departure from the group’s usual fare because in our early days most of the original material was straight-ahead rock. The song starts in a pop vein but quickly develops into something more jazz-rock oriented structurally and especially instrumentally.

I’m not sure where the inspiration came from. Well, actually I do but more on that later. Right now, I’m talking about the inspiration for the feel of the track, chord changes, melody and instrumentation. I was listening to a lot of fusion and Latin jazz in the ’70s and some of our cover list included jazz-rock material. So, that’s likely what inspired me.

Both Nick and Dan take nice solo turns on the track, Nick plays an infectious rhythm throughout and George is locked in on the funky Latin grooves. Nick takes the first solo during the main section of the song with a decidedly jazz feel. Dan takes three choruses at the end of the main section building throughout, incorporating more rock and jazz-rock ideas. Then we turn the rhythm around twice and he plays some incendiary fills against the background and lead vocals on the tag.

This song was a mainstay live in our early days. Eventually, I believe we dropped it from the set list as we wrote newer tunes.

The inspiration comes from one source emotionally, my wife, Lynne. We weren’t married yet but Lynne was an extraordinary inspiration then as she has been over the years.

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After Pulse, To The Island

by on Dec.03, 2015, under Music

When Pulse was finally finished, kaput, Beau, Peter and I moved to New York, rechristened as Island. The idea of the group was to have no limits. We played in a variety of styles. Eclectic would be the best way to describe our repertoire.

Pulse Paul Rosano Portrait 6 SmallerIt impressed some and probably put others off a bit, but we did garner interest and enough studio time to record an LP’s worth of tunes.

The first track here, Good Time, is one of the first, if not the first, we recorded at the cavernous Capitol Recording Studios. The tune was written by Beau and I sang lead, one of my first. Peter is on lead guitar and harmony and the track was pretty much recorded live in the studio as we didn’t even go back and put a rhythm track on to back Peter’s incendiary solo.

Pulse Beau Segal Portrait 3 SmallerWe did a lot of acoustic auditions in the offices of managers, promoters, agents and producers in New York and we almost invariably opened up with Good Time and it almost always generated interest in the listeners. An attention-grabber.

It can only be described as power country-rock, a territory we were just delving into.

The second track, Everybody’s Jumpin’, is one of my compositions and was recorded at Blue Rock in Soho with Todd Rundgren engineering as he had on a previously

Paul, top, Beau, middle, and Peter, above. This is how we looked at the time in New York.

Paul, top, Beau, middle, and Peter, above. This is how we looked at the time in New York.

posted track Where Am I Going? This is what I mean by eclectic. The song was inspired by one of my favorite vocalists at the time. I was trying to sing something in a lower register as most everything I did at that point was either high harmonies or leads in a high register. It doesn’t sound anything like the vocalist I had in mind. The music track is totally other than what inspired it.

We always envisioned the background vocals as horn parts, and perhaps we would have added those on a master, but it kind of works this way as well with three-part harmony. Barry Flast, later of Poco, lends a hand on the keys and as you can hear we gave him pretty much free reign.

All set up by Sam Gordon (RIP) the publisher who worked for Albert Grossman and Benet Glotzer. The SoundCloud photo includes Harvey, although he wasn’t with us by this time.


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Pulse: Two Unreleased

by on Aug.26, 2015, under Music

Pulse, the original six-piece band, from left: Carl Donnell, Peter Neri, Paul Rosano, Rich Bednarczyk, Beau Segal and Jeff Potter.

The two tunes below were intended for the second Pulse album, Reach For The Sun, which never saw the light of day.

Both were written while the original six-piece band was together but weren’t arranged and recorded until 1969 during the transition period to a four-piece group that included second guitarist Harvey Thurott along with Beau Segal, Paul Rosano and Peter Neri.

Sometime Sunshine was the only tune on which Peter and I collaborated in Pulse.  Peter wrote the main part of the song in late 1968, during a hiatus from the band for several months. When he came back in late ’68/early ’69 he had written a plethora of outstanding tunes that included Too Much Lovin’ (the Pulse album opener), Hypnotized, Garden Of Love and Days Of My Life (another unreleased gem), among others.

Sometime Sunshine was one of the band’s favorites of these tunes but Peter had no bridge for it. In early 1969 I had a song fragment that I believed would work in the middle of the tune. We tried it and somehow we made it happen in that little rehearsal shed at the back of the parking lot at Syncron Studios, our home base.

The song also became a showcase for the contrasting guitar tones and styles of Peter (Guild) and Harvey (Strat) as you can hear in the middle section call and answers between the two. And it was one of the highlights of the four-piece band’s live set.

Peter sang the middle section and I joined him in unison and harmony, one of my first recorded vocals.

The other tune, Heaven Help Me was one of my early compositions. At that time, I couldn’t pull off the opening acoustic and voice section of the tune so I taught the melody and changes to Peter, who developed the fingering style acoustic part and sang the melody exactly as I wanted it. I always thought that was amazing.

I sing the middle section, which still included Richie Bednarczyk on Steinway Grand, which attests to this being recorded during the transition, and Peter and I sing in unison mostly on the third section, which concludes the 7-minute tune.

An interesting side note on this song:

A license to use the song in a film by a Yale student was granted for an undisclosed (by my manager) sum of money. In fact, I didn’t even hear about this until weeks later when one of my fellow band mates mentioned it. When I went into the office of my manager/producer/publisher, he looked sheepishly at me, feigning disbelief that I didn’t know. He wouldn’t tell me for what the granting of the song’s rights were sold. Eventually, I was handed a check for $100, not an insignificant sum in the late ’60s, but for some reason I always felt it wasn’t commensurate with what it should have been.

One of the things that made me feel this was that when my manager’s accountant handed me the check he smirked and sarcastically remarked that I didn’t deserve to receive that much! Ah, the music business. Yet another familiar tale.

Anyways, I always liked both of these tunes and they were an indicator of where the band was headed. Unfortunately, this version of Pulse was no more after December of 1970. That then led to the New York-based Island.

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Napi Browne: Two more sides

by on Nov.17, 2014, under Music


These two tracks were again recorded in different locations and at different times.

Dennis Demorro, Nick Bagnasco, Paul Rosano and Dan Gulino backstage at the Oxford Ale House, New Haven, CT, circa 1977-78.

Spell On You was recorded in 1980 at Paul Leka Studios in Bridgeport, Connecticut with Vic Steffens on drums along with the original band members, Nick Bagnasco, lead guitar and lead vocals, Paul Rosano, bass and lead vocals, and Dan Gulino, lead guitar and background vocals.

Blame It On You was recorded in 1978 at Bearsville Studios in Woodstock, New York, with Dennis Demorro on drums.

A little on each track:

Spell On You was written by Dan and me. Dan came up with the initial musical idea, chord changes for the verse and chorus. I wrote most of the melody and lyrics (with a nod to William Blake in the second verse), although it wasn’t so clearly defined as we both contributed to the music and lyrics at various stages of writing it. Nick and Vic made big contributions to the arrangement of the tune.

I came up with the idea for the bridge and it’s one of my favorites to play. I recall that I asked the engineer Ron Bacchiocchi  if I could record the bass part during the main tracking from inside the control booth since it was always almost impossible to hear myself in the studio with the other guys. I was going direct so I didn’t believe it would be a problem. He eventually relented and it worked out great.

We pumped the bass inside the control booth during the basic tracking, I could hear myself extremely well and I didn’t lose any feel from not being in the same room with the other guys. They could see me and I them through the glass. It was particularly effective during that bridge.

This one was written in Fair Haven, as Street Talkin’ Ways was. Dan and I lived next door to each other and we worked on it in his music room and my living room for about a week.

The track definitely has a West Coast vibe to it. I sing lead, Nick and Dan harmony. Dan takes the scorching solo.

Blame It On You is Nick’s song. He wrote all the music and lyrics, came with it to us and we all worked on the arrangement. Dan takes a dynamic slide solo on the track and Nick plays an infectious funky rhythm that starts on the second verse as well as the lead lines in the intro. Nick sang it and Dan and I sang harmony.

Both tracks were live staples and a lot of fun to play.

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Kala Farnham, Anahata: Wake Up Your Heart

by on Sep.02, 2014, under Music


Kala Farnham sets the tone of her first full-length studio album with its opening track Naked Honest.

A rolling piano figure opens up into her familiar classically-tinged playing that underpins an arresting melody. It’s all propelled by Farnham’s impassioned and proficient voice that carries through to a soaring chorus.

The tune is one Farnham released on a live EP from 2009 but this arrangement is fleshed out with a small but full-sounding ensemble as opposed to a solo outing. The track as well as all of the album’s tracks are treated this way and they all benefit from what is really a new production approach from the Connecticut singer-songwriter. The arrangement even includes some tasty guitar playing leading into the bridge, somewhat of a departure compared with her previous recordings.

The group includes: Duke Levine (guitar/mandola);  Daisy Castro (fiddle/cello), Richard Gates (bass), and Marty Wirt (percussion/drums).

Anahata: Wake Up Your Heart is filled with new and older inspiring compositions by Farnham like that opening track. One of the most ambitious Niantic Bay has an almost epic feel to it similar to some of her past songs, but again is fully developed with background vocals, creative percussion and a wonderful sense of dynamics that runs throughout.

Her voice so easily transitions from full-bodied to delicate falsetto with a sparkling top end on this tune and others such as the staccato-driven, pop-oriented title track.

Farnham treads much new ground here in her approach even to her older tunes. Songbird, which first appeared on the Naked Honest Live EP has a contemporary jazz-waltz feel, straight from the ’60s. The jaunty Singin’ Along’s (Sparrow’s Song) dance hall feel in 2/4 further shows off Farnham’s versatility. Complemented by fiddle, the track illustrates a lighter and refreshing side to her compositions.

But one of the most surprising and pleasing tracks is her take on the classic traditional song House Of The Rising Son, the only cover on the album. She shows she’s fully capable of interpreting the blues though her own song styling and presents one of the most impressive recent versions of this well-worn staple that came to the public’s attention back in the early ’60s via Dylan and the powerhouse arrangement of The Animals.

The track also shows off Farnham’s voice perhaps better than any other with her soaring interpretation of the familiar lyrics. Never harsh always heartfelt, smooth and riding on top of the melody Farnham’s vocals throughout the album are in many ways the main attraction, holding the listener fixed by the music and lyrical content.

All her songs are infused with poignant and penetrating word play. The rushing Pencil and Ink weaves a story of love and love lost through the writing of a song. All this adorning a beautifully conceived arrangement with perfectly complementing drums and violin.
The spiritually inflected Anam Caram and Maitri, a song of unconditional friendship and love, speak to the center of the album’s focus while bringing the work to its satisfying conclusion. Both are arranged in 3/4 and carry an enlightened perspective through Farnham’s singular talents as singer and piano player.

Other surprises and delights within range from the infectious chorus of By Your Side to Mon Cher and La Coupe’s French-English lyrical content to the powerful and impetuous Ruthless, again featuring guitar.

In all, a complete and accomplished first full-album for Farnham that shows so many more sides to her talents than previous live and EP collections. She has the songs, she has the voice and she has a perfectly conceived piano approach that helps meld all the elements of her talents together into style and substance truly her own.

Kala Farnham’s web site: www.kalafarnham.com

Anahata: Wake Up Your Heart at CD Baby: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/kalafarnham3

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Napi Browne: Two sides to the band

by on Feb.24, 2014, under Music


The two tracks below were recorded about two years apart at different studios and with different drummers. They show off two distinct sides of the band Napi Browne, which played extensively in southern New England and Long Island in the late 1970s and early ’80s.

Napi Browne backstage at the Oxford Ale House in the late 1970s. From left, Nick Bagnasco, Dennis DeMorro, Dan Gulino and Paul Rosano

The first, Forget All About It,  is an all-out, straight-ahead rocker, written by Nick Bagnasco, one of our two lead guitarists. Nick also sang lead on the track. I used to love playing this tune. It’s an in-your-face, no-holds barred guitar rock song that never lets up. We recorded it at Paul Leka Studios in Bridgeport around 1981. Vic Steffens, who was playing live with us at the time, is on drums and he also co-produced the track.

But the band also liked to play other types of music, particularly fusion and funk, and the second tune, Phase In Phase Out, written by Dan Gulino, our other lead guitarist, displays that aspect. An instrumental, it shows off both guitar players and the rhythm section, which included Dennis DeMorro on drums.

Phase In, Phase Out was recorded at Bearville Studios in Woodstock, N.Y., and was produced by the band. We stayed up there for about three days in a little house directly opposite the Bear Restaurant. I had stayed there previously during the early ’70s with Beau Segal, drummer for Pulse and Island. At the time, we were working as session players for Sam Gordon’s Publishing house in New York.

Check out Dan’s lead on Forget All About it and the harmony guitars in the middle section. That was a trademark of the band and something Nick and Dan had worked on for years. They had a tight and tasty blend together.

The harmony guitars are also in evidence on Phase In, Phase Out. Nick takes the middle section solo and Dan plays lead all around his melody lines throughout the tune.

The band was versatile. We usually played about one set’s worth or our own tunes, including these two. Some of the bands we covered showed the range of the group as well as the original material. We played Bodhisattva by Steely Dan, Freedom, Wait Until Tomorrow and Message To Love by Hendrix, Good Times, Bad Times by Zeppelin, Jeff Beck instrumentals, including Cause We’ve Ended As Lovers on which Danny soloed, material from Les Dudek and Nils Lofgren as well as familiar club fare for the time by the likes of Bowie, ZZ Top and others, even the Beatles.


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