TORONTO September 20, 2004: Internationally recognized Jazz violinist, composer, arranger and producer Lenny Solomon is part of a unique musical echelon. Not only is he an extraordinarily gifted violinist, but his incredible technical skill and emotional openness allow him to pass seamlessly between genres - whether he is performing classical works, burning rock adagios or navigating the waters of straight-ahead bebop. As many critics have pointed out, Lenny Solomon is the logical successor to the legendary Gershwin-era composer/violinist Joe Venuti, Stéphane Grappelli or Stuff Smith, and certainly on an equal footing with the more recent stars of jazz violin, such as Jean-Luc Ponty, Marc Feldman and Regina Carter.
Transparency has been produced by Lenny, his long-time associate Shelly Berger and cellist/composer Wendy Solomon. The recording (which also contains an original composition entitled, "Transparency"), is a descriptive musical narrative that paints a melodic picture of Lenny's innermost thoughts about the nature and beauty of jazz. According to Lenny, "jazz, in its pure form is 'transparent', in that the music itself is honest, and reveals its true essence". Jazz projects, by their very nature, are collaborative and joining Lenny on Transparency is an all-star line-up of first call jazz musicians: Phil Dwyer on piano, Pat Collins on bass, Geoff Young on guitar, Barry Romberg on drums and Guest Artist, Wendy Solomon on cello.
Included in Transparency are a number of original compositions, "Leila's Waltz" by Geoff Young; "Don't Tell Me What to Do" by Lenny Solomon and Shelly Berger "The Reel Thing" by Shelly Berger, and a highly original rendition of a well-known classical piece by the iconic composer / conductor of the late 19th Century, Paganini. It's been re-worked here by Lenny Solomon and Geoff Young, and titled "Paganini Blues"-this piece has never been adapted for jazz, and Lenny has done a beautiful job with this rendition-complete with "scratchy 78 sounds" in the beginning of the tune! Also on Transparency are Lenny's takes on the traditional Stephen Foster war-horse, "Oh Susannah"; Oliver Nelson's "Hoedown"; "Sweet Georgia Brown"; Gershwin's "I Got Rhythm" and Hoagy Carmichael's classic, "The Nearness of You". Modern and venerable composers have also contributed ! repertoire to the CD with "Black Satin" and "Wild Dog" by Joe Venuti and "Calgary Stampede" by the late, great pianist/vibraphonist/drummer/composer Victor Feldman.
Transparency is being released independently, and is available on-line at RadioDirectX.com, JAZZ FM 91's "Jazz e-Store" and the newly launched website, www.lennysolomon.com. About Lenny Solomon...
Lenny Solomon has long been regarded as one of the most skilled and innovative violinists on the scene. He is a Juno Award winner, and in the seventies, was a member of the successful pop duo "Myles and Lenny". They recorded two albums for Columbia Records and toured internationally. The group was distinguished by Lenny's cutting edge rock violin, which effectively utilized electronic effects and sound processing. In the eighties, Lenny returned to a more traditional, acoustic violin sound. It was during this period that he (along with long-time associate and fellow "Trio Norte" member, Bill Bridges) worked with the pop string quintet, "Quintessence". It was also during this time that he established himself as a busy studio musician, performing on literally hundreds of recordings, films, TV shows and commercials. He has appeared on stage with major headliners such as Dionne Warwick, Plant and Page, John McDermott, Liza Minnelli, P! aul Shaffer, Daniel Lanois, Anne Murray, Tony Bennett, Ruby Braff and David Byrne. In the early nineties, Lenny established his reputation as one of the leading jazz violinists. He released two well-received jazz CDs, After You've Gone and The Gershwin Sessions, and toured internationally with his own trio. He was also the recipient of The Jazz Report's annual "Violinist of the Year" award three times. This prestigious honour is now called "The National Jazz Awards", and Lenny continues to be nominated on a yearly basis. Recently, Lenny put together an intriguing and popular jazz group, "The Galaxy Trio" featuring classical violinist Moshe Hammer and jazz pianist Bernie Senensky. The group fused classical and jazz violin motifs, and has recorded and toured North America to rave reviews and sellout crowds. Lenny is also very proud of his work with his recent project the world-music ensemble, "Trio Norte", which feat! ures Bill Bridges on guitar and the remarkable Russian accordi! onist Sa sha Luminsky. "Trio Norte" released its first self-titled CD on Marquis Classics/EMI, and received rave reviews from critics and music lovers alike. The unique fusion of Latin, Klezmer and jazz sensibilities has been a huge success-in fact, Lenny Solomon has recently been honored by SOCAN for his #1 video (BRAVO/Factor) of "Fernanda"- certainly one of the most stirring tunes on the "Trio Norte" CD, and a composition that lent itself brilliantly to the visual mileau. Lenny Solomon also has a new ensemble for the new millennium, entitled "Bowfire". With virtuosity in the hands of modern-day string masters, dancers and a thrilling theatrical presentation, "Bowfire" promises to be one of Lenny's most successful ventures yet. There is a large international tour planned, which will be sponsored by YAMAHA. For further information about "Bowfire", please log on to www.bowfire.com. With his current performance ensembles up and running, Lenny is hoping to achieve a new direction in entertainment and performing highlighting the art of string performance, as well as fusing and coalescing a myriad of styles with some of the most sought after musicians in the business.