Karen Lyu Jazz Experience
Label: JazzMine Records
Ain't Misbehavin'; God Bless the Child; Cry If You Want To; Stormy Monday; Stand By Me; Autumn Leaves; Moon River; Feeling Good; Changes with Time
Additional Personnel / Information
Lonnie Plaxico: bass; Mike Melito: drums; Misha Tsiganov: piano; Karen Lyu: vocals
THE STORY BEHIND THE KAREN LYU & FRESH JAZZ CD From Korea to New York, playful and heartfelt jazz recorded by world-class pros to light up your world! Why did I fly from South Korea to New York to record this special CD? It's quite a story!!! It starts in 1995. I was starting my jazz career in Minneapolis, MN, but I was considering moving to New York City, because things weren't going so well, being a newbie Korean-American jazz singer in MN who just graduated in 1993 with a BSS in Jazz Studies from Cornell College in IA. So, I decided to check out NYC. Amazingly, my old college roommate, Naomi, worked with the mother-in-law of legendary actor, Nathan Purdee, who played Hank Gannon on the soap opera, One Life to Live, and she put in a good word for me! So, I got to house-sit his extra NYC apartment with my high-school friend, Jenny. I had a nice, healthy lunch with Nathan, and he amazingly took me on the set of One Life to Live and introduced me to everyone, which was unforgettable!!! While in New York, I had dinner with Ravi Coltrane (son of John Coltrane)—who I met in Minneapolis 3 weeks prior, when he played with veteran jazz pianist, Joanne Brackeen, at the Dakota. I asked him about his dreams, and he mentioned that Lonnie Plaxico was his favorite bassist, but that he was too green and doubted that Lonnie would ever play with him?! I encouraged him, but he was humble. Lonnie has played with multiple Grammy-award-winners, including Cassandra Wilson, Art Blakey, Chet Baker, Dexter Gordon, and Wynton Marsalis!!! Two days later, I went with my friend, Jenny, to Birdland. And, Lonnie just happened to be playing there! So I gave Lonnie Ravi's number, and they have gigged, recorded and toured together a number of times over the years since then!!! I went back to Minneapolis, got a day job, started my Karen Lyu & Global Jazz band, and never returned to New York. But, Lonnie kept in touch with me about once a year, by phone or email. Then, he found me on MySpace and we later connected on Facebook, when I lived in Nashville, and he always remembered to wish me a happy birthday! Suddenly, last November, Lonnie called to let me know that he was flying to Seoul, where I live now, to perform with Cassandra Wilson!!! I tried to see him perform with Cassandra Wilson in Minnesota before, but he wasn't playing with her at that time. Sadly, we missed each other again due to circumstances beyond our control. I was despondent, but Lonnie said, "We'll meet in New York, someday. Don't worry!" Then, out of the blue, 3 months later, Dave Anderson, a renown Rochester, NY producer/recording engineer/songwriter/and radio show host friended me on Facebook based on our mutual platinum award-winning songwriter friend, Roy August, in Nashville, TN. After a few video chats about songwriting and potentially recording vocals of his original songs in Seoul, Dave bought and listened to my Karen Lyu & Fresh Jazz CD. And, he was so inspired that he generously invited me to record a new CD on spec at his dream recording studio, which he was building in Rochester, NY!!! The first thing I did was contact Lonnie Plaxico, who offered to record with me for free. (minus room, board, and airfare)!!! And, it was on!!! Miraculously, the resources suddenly appeared in my life to not only make this unexpected recording opportunity happen, but also to fund a 3-City US Birthday Tour!!! The music tour took me to Minneapolis, MN to perform with my former Global Jazz band members, to Nashville, TN to perform with my former Fresh Jazz band members, to NY to record at Saxon Recording in Rochester, NY, and also to New York City to perform at Rockwood Music Hall with Lonnie and world-class NYC jazz cats!!! It was great to see old friends and fans, and meet new fans!! CLASSIC CONCEPT - 8 Great Songs + 1 Original Piano Solo * Recorded live in the studio with a classic approach, using vintage microphones by Neumann, RCA, and Altec, from the golden age of recording! * All the songs were recorded live in the studio within 10 hours—with no overdubs! * The Baldwin grand piano was the same one used by The Fray for the recording and the music video for their platinum single "How to Save a Life"!
Album uploaded by Karen Lyu