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Fashion Designer Pamela Quinzi

Pamela Quinzi Photo FivePamela Quinzi, a fashion designer originally from Rome, Italy, via Milan and who now makes her home in New York City, is considered to be one of the rising young stars on the international fashion scene. Her collection of couture shoes, Kilame is popping up in boutiques in Beverly Hills and in New York City and since there are no two shoes exactly alike you can also contact Pamela Quinzi directly through her website and follow her on the official Kilame Facebook page. Pamela Quinzi also has an accessories collection, but her main focus right now is Kilame. In the past she has collaborated with some of the world’s leading designers and fashion houses to design dresses, handbags and other accessories and she still does create new designs for dresses, jewelry and accessories. Kilame however is her baby and she works feverishly day and night to grow the international presence of her brand (the shoes) and it has earned her the nickname Cinderella of New York.

During our recent conversation Quinzi was in the southern part of Italy on the coast of the Adriatic Sea for a month where she works closely with manufacturers, creating new styles and in May she will be heading back to Los Angeles for the second time in 2017.

“I had been before to LA for traveling and for checking out everything, but this was the first time for the collection to be in LA and a whole new world opened up to me.  I will be in New York and then in Los Angeles for a month in May. I will be with the showroom (in Los Angeles) that is representing the shoes for all of the celebrities. We had a connection with the Oscars through Blanca Blanco the actress. We are (making connections) every day in photoshoots and we have other possibilities. For Kilame shoes right now it is really important to get into the celebrity world and that is what I am focused on. Then I will come back to Italy, before heading back to New York to get ready for September when we will be in New York Fashion Week, then back to LA again. There is a lot of traveling.

Right now this whole new opportunity in Los Angeles is important to me. Things  Read More

Elisabetta Russo

Elisabetta Russo front page imageElisabetta Russo is an Italian soprano soloist and Opera star who was born in Bari in the Puglia region of Italy and who grew up in Calabria in the town of Cariati. She now makes her home in Los Angeles, California and recently she received her green card. She has performed with some of Europe’s and North America’s most well-known members of the music community including, Andrea Bocelli, David Foster and Renato Bruson.

Describing her childhood she says, “It is a beautiful city in the Calabria region. I had a loving childhood and I was raised in a very loving family who always supported me. Living in Cariati it was nothing short of an amazing privilege, because I was incredibly lucky to play by the sea, inspired by nature and the coastline. I was twelve years old when my father brought home a magazine, along with a Classical CD of the opera Aida by Giuseppe Verdi. I fell in love with the story, but most of all with the beautiful music. It was my soundtrack for the whole next month. I just couldn’t stop listening to it.

I used to sing Pop music as a child, but then I am an old soul and Rossini, Verdi and Puccini were the right companions for the musical adventure that I was about to start.”

During her youth Elisabetta Russo played Classical piano and she also took vocal lessons. She later auditioned for the S. Cecilia Conservatory of Music in Rome, from which she graduated in 2004 with a Bachelor degree in Vocal Art and she also has a Master’s degree cum laude in Chamber Music and she attained the highest marks possible. She studied with some of the most iconic figures in Italian music, Edda Moser, Renata Scotto, Alberto Zedda and Renato Bruson.

Ms. Russo refers to her time with Alberto Zedda as being, “a unique opportunity. He was a very important figure in my career and my whole life.  He was very demanding, but also so encouraging and joyful. He loved his students more than anything else.” (Editor’s note – Mr. Zedda passed away in March of 2017. He was eighty-nine years old.)

With her decision to embark on a career in music she says, “In the beginning it was  Read More


Singer Andrea Celeste - Jewerly by Comotto Gioielli

Andrea Celeste Front Page Photo
 
Photo by Roberto "Robbo" Vigo

Christine Flowers, Jazz & Mini Ninjas

Christine Flowers front page photoTake a white American girl who grew up in North Carolina and Georgia, and who attended the first integrated school in the state of Georgia, where many of her fellow students were the children of civil rights activists, mix that with listening to a healthy dose of Martin Luther King Jr. and Ralph Abernathy on Sunday mornings and she has now lived in Paris, France for most of her adult life and what do you get? You get a terrific Jazz singer named Christine Flowers, who is also a voice actress, and recently launched her own YouTube channel featuring weekly ten minute restorative and therapeutic yoga sessions. You also get a woman who knows who she is, has strong convictions concerning human rights and who appears to be very comfortable in her own skin.

Looking back Christine Flowers describes herself as, “I really am an artist and I was a failure at academics. I was so flighty and I was so daydreamy about other things, music and poetry and all of that stuff.  I didn’t (care) about anything else. I was just allergic to that stuff. The funny thing is when I finally got out of high school and had I not graduated out of a performing arts high school (she pauses) all of my credits were because I was a singer, an actress and a dancer or I don’t think that I would have graduated.

There were a few years that went by that all I did was act and sing. Then I decided to go back to university. I realized that I was quite good at studying and academics. It was a choice and I even got really interested in physics and astronomy. I found out I was really, really good at that, but the only thing was, I wasn’t good at math. I got my head around the theory about it, but I couldn’t go ahead in that discipline, because  Read More

Jenny Jones - Blondies Recipe

Blondies Recipe front page photoJenny Jones hosted her own nationally syndicated talk show but that was just one of many jobs that Jenny has held, including waitress, bookkeeper, author, comedian, musician, singer, songwriter, caterer and chef.

Jenny Jones Easy One Bowl Blondies

You only need 3 tablespoons of butter for these yummy, chewy bars. Toasting the pecans makes a huge difference in taste and there’s almost no cleanup if you line your pan with foil. Do not overmix or overbake. - Jenny Jones

Prep Time: 12 minutes

Cook Time: 18 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Makes:       16 servings

Ingredients:

3 Tablespoons butter, melted & cooled

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla 

Read More

Nilla Nielsen Releases New Album

Nilla Nielsen Photo Front PageSinger, songwriter, musician and suspense novelist Nilla Nielsen may be the best kept secret outside of Sweden or at least to North American music fans. The very congenial Swede has just released a brand new album Good Day and it opens with a fabulous the fabulous title song. It starts out slowly, before hitting stride as a mid-tempo song and Nielsen’s vocals are backed by strong musicians, Bengt Johnson on drums, Niklas Ekelund (electric and acoustic guitar, mandolin), Erik Urban on bass, Tomas Pettersson on Hammond organ and Nilla Nielsen also plays harmonica.

Nielsen describes “Destination Unknown,” in this way, “It is about a true adventure. I was traveling around in Sweden with my best girlfriend at the time and we met so many wonderful people. When I sing this line about, “Angels in worn out shoes,” it was a homeless person that we met on the street and it just moved us. We had a very special connection. The song is about us traveling around, all of the meetings, how open the feeling was, how open the world was and how it felt. We were never alone. It doesn’t matter where you are, (because) it is about who you are there with.”

Most of the songs on the album were both mixed and mastered by Nilla Nielsen, with the exception of a couple of them that are from older recordings, but she mastered those ones as well in her own studio. Good Day, the album, showcases Nielsen’s ability to easily transcend genre boundaries.

“It (the album) is put together from different sessions in different places Read More

Scott Tarulli New Album in the Works

Scott Tarulli front page photoWhen a big name performer utilizes quality musicians to accompany their performances the contributions of their sidemen and women can sometimes get overlooked when the glare of the spotlight is on the featured performer. There is also however, another train of thought and that is smart and talented artists surround themselves with people who make them look good and often give them a lot of space, so their talents can be showcased as well. Scott Tarulli falls into the latter category and he has recorded with and / or shared the stage with the likes of, Jerry Marotta, Tony Levin, Mark Egan, Ira Coleman, Nile Rodgers, Steve Gadd, Abe Laboriel, The Temptations, Bernard Purdie, Chuck Rainey, Peter Eldridge and Guthrie Govan.

Scott Tarulli has also released three solo albums, Transitions in 2002, September in Boston Live in 2004 and the 2012 release of Anytime, Anywhere. There is also a fourth album in the works for 2017.

In addition, to being a very good guitarist and composer, Scott Tarulli teaches at Berklee College of Music in Boston.

Scott Tarulli’s story begins in Medina, Ohio where his family lived until Tarulli was ten years old. At that point they moved to Boston and he has lived in the Boston area ever since.

“My dad’s side (of the family) was very artistic, although nobody actually entered the arts. My mom’s side was very musical. She Read More

Celeste Yarnall & Nazim Nazim

Celeste Yarnall Photo Front PageWhat happens when art meets the clothing design world? Well in the case of Nazim Nazim (first name and last name the same) and Celeste Yarnall, actress turned entrepreneur the result is wearable art in the form of the Art of Wellness collection and the Celeste Yarnall Curated Wearable Art Collection.

“Almost from the moment that I met Nazim and fell in love with his art and as our relationship progressed and we fell in love with each other, I kept thinking how magnificent his paintings would be if we could translate them to scarves, kimono style sheer wraps and especially jewelry. You know what they say, be careful what you wish for, because if you envision it, it is going to happen. The opportunity to do this kind of design work together just fell out of the heavens. I am thrilled that my dream has come to fruition,” says Celeste Yarnall.

Her husband and partner in this enterprise, Nazim Nazim contributes, “As to the inspiration behind the designs, like Celeste said it is very much based on a vision that she had and the fact that she could see in my work the potential to create a unique fashion style and fashion sense. It was very much born out of our collaborative view of the world.”

Celeste joins in, “As an actress I always had the ability to see what the camera sees.  I have the ability to see how people see me and I can see how I see them. When I look at one of Nazim’s paintings and sometimes they come from an idea that I’ve had, I might say darling what about this? He will immediately get his sketch pad and he will create something and I will say wow that is exactly what I had in my head. There is often a Read More

Barbara Dennerlein - DVD / CD

Barbara Dennerlein fpBarbara Dennerlein one of the world’s most highly regarded organists and Jazz composers just released a brand new CD and DVD, My Moments, recorded live at Studio Acusticum in the northern Swedish town of Piteá. The original Jazz compositions are played on both the Hammond organ, for which she is more widely known and the pipe organ. The very congenial Dennerlein who has become a good friend of Riveting Riffs Magazine over the years spoke to us from her home in Germany and referred to this CD / DVD as her most personal recording so far.  

She explains why, “It is so pure. It is a solo situation. I am alone with both instruments. It is so personal. I think my personal style has developed over many, many years and it is very special. When you have a solo situation you can hear it more clearly. Also you can hear the little things. Very often when you have a drummer with you no matter how good he is it is always covering details from the organ sound. I do so many little things, because I love the sound and I love the colors that you can make and little changes. I like to experiment with sound and I can do this alone with my instruments. That is why I think it is my most personal one.

(Also), there is nobody else that you can hide behind. You have your own inspiration. I play the pedals very intensely, I have a whole band in a way, as I play with my feet the bass player’s work and I have both of my hands for comping and soloing. It gives me a lot of freedom and my style, which is very different from other organists, can be heard very clearly on the solo performance. It is wonderful and I just can let it go and it flows. Read More

Katie Garibaldi and Rooted Clarity

Katie Garibaldi front pageCalifornia singer, songwriter and musician Katie Garibaldi is not a rocker, not a twanger and nor is she a jazzer. Her pretty and ethereal vocals and her relatable songs are self-described as being gentle Americana or orchestral Americana. Certainly the gentle Americana description is appropriate for the five songs from her new EP Rooted Clarity. Nathan Lowry’s beautiful violin and cellist Emily Nelson give a fuller sound to “Bird In A Cage,” and help to create a breathtaking beauty that compliments Garibaldi’s vocals.

“I have heard that a lot of artists sometimes think that louder is better and I don’t fit into that belief. I think the way my voice is naturally and pairing it with the string players and the orchestral sound is what comes with that description. The gentle and ethereal (description of my music) comes from my voice and how it is naturally soft.

Americana to me is music from the heart, it is storytelling and it is truth from your heart. It is all about showcasing the lyrics and the emotion behind the lyrics. It is always most important just to get the story across,” says Katie Garibaldi.  

The other common theme throughout the music of Katie Garibaldi is that of love. It is evidenced on several of her albums in songs such as the upbeat and fun, “Lock the Door, Lose the Key,” and “Always Kiss Me Goodnight,” both from the Follow Your Heart album, “Hey, Hey Darlin’,” “Love Without Chains,” “and “Falling For You,” (all from Next Ride Out), and her single “Baby We’re In Love.”

“I think I am a romantic at heart. I Read More

Anna Danes Has Found Her Wings

Photo front page Imagine if you will for a moment living in three different countries by the time you are eleven years old and having to escape the first one under the guise of a vacation. Then you achieve scholastic excellence in your new found home, begin a promising career as an attorney, give it all up for love and move to a fourth country. As a single parent you think you are giving your child a gift by providing her with singing lessons, she stubbornly refuses to take part in them and then magic, at the suggestion of the vocal coach you take the rest of the lessons and you launch a career as a Jazz singer, topped off by recording your most recent album in the very same studio where Frank Sinatra once recorded. It sounds a little farfetched I know, except all of this really happened and it could not possibly have happened to a more deserving person than the warm and gracious Jazz singer Anna Danes, who now makes her home in San Diego, California. This is only part of Anna Danes’ story, read further and you will discover a courageous lady who is always looking forward, who does not dwell on the disappointments of the past and who just released her second album.  

Anna Danes’ story begins in Gdansk, Poland, “Life (in Poland) was certainly very, very different than it is here, especially on the economic side of things and with personal freedoms, because there were none.  It was the time of the communist regime in Poland and so things were scarce and you had to fight to survive every day.  You couldn’t leave the country, unless the government gave you permission to leave the country.  You couldn’t speak your mind and if you could speak your mind it could backfire and it would affect your career, your family and life sometimes.  It was living in Read More

Design by Moises Nieto

Moses Nieto Photo One

Photo by Sabado De Frebrero, Courtesy of image.net

Gypsy Soul - 20 Years of Great Music

Gypsy Soul 2016 front page photoGypsy Soul, the husband and wife duo of Roman Morykit and Cilette Swan, augmented by an assortment of musicians, just announced the North American release of their new album, simply titled True. It is their thirteenth recording and the songwriting, instrumentals, vocals and production capture the essence of this superbly talented and equally congenial twosome. There are no weak links with this collection of eleven songs.    

When asked to reflect upon the fact that Gypsy Soul has established a musical legacy that has endured for almost twenty years, Roman Morykit says, “It is interesting, because I have never even given it a lot of thought. It is just one of the things that we do, it is like breathing. It’s like it is time for another record, we have enough material. It is part of who we are and what we do. It is only when people like yourself who are friends and fans point out that we have made thirteen albums that we realize we have had a career of (almost) twenty years as Gypsy Soul. It will be twenty years next year.

Back to Cilette’s earlier point, it is short and time flies by and all of a sudden you are on number thirteen. It is astonishing to us actually that we have managed to keep doing this for this long.”

For the Oregon couple, the story of Gypsy Soul begins twenty-seven years ago in Edinburgh, Scotland.

That would make us twenty-nine now,” says Roman.

“I know we met as toddlers right,” chimes in Cilette, before recalling how they met, “I was in a band with Roman’s brother and that is how it all started. I had been living in France and I moved to Edinburgh. I went there on a little weekend trip and I fell in love with Edinburgh. I said to myself, I must live here and I made it happen.

I met Roman’s brother in a recording studio.  We started writing together.  Read More

Cindy Alexander and Deep Waters

Cindy Alexander Photo One 2016Earlier this year Cindy Alexander released her album Deep Waters, a collaborative effort with Colin Devlin of The Devlins. It is Cindy Alexander’s best album yet. It is a collection of songs that are original tunes, with two exceptions a cover of “Heaven’s Wall,” by The Devlins and Jann Arden’s “Good Mother.”

The new album opens with Cindy Alexander covering “Heaven’s Wall,” a 1990s song by the Irish band The Devlins, from their 1997 album Waiting. She has always had a good voice, but this song fits very well with Alexander’s vocals and her phrasing is excellent. As the song builds to a crescendo at the 2:30 mark Cindy Alexander’s connection with this song is evident as she repeats the chorus “Come on, take my hand, we’ll rise above it all / Then we can meet as planned outside of heaven’s wall.” 

“When I was going through Colin’s material, before we were going to start writing together, I was listening to his music and I came across this song. It is a Devlin’s song from the ‘90s and it hooked me. I loved the groove and I loved that the beat was relentless, but there was this slow and steady build. It kept going through my head and it was an earworm. When it came time to put the songs together I thought it would be nice to cover one of his songs. I love the guitar solo by Colin,” says Alexander.

The album Deep Waters was difficult for us to get through the first time and only because each of the songs is so well presented that the tendency is just to keep replaying them, before finally convincing yourself to move on to the next song.

The current album originally started out with the premise Read More

Katie Ferrara Takes to the Streets

Katie Ferrara Front Page PhotoNot all buskers get a big breakthrough and not all artists who play in popular clubs make a lot of money or see their stars rise, but we think that Katie Ferrara will likely soon establish herself as an artist who can write her own ticket. The bubbly twenty-something year old singer, songwriter and guitarist has performed at clubs such as the House of Blues and the now departed Key Club, but she saw an opportunity to grow her fan base and her financial reserves more quickly by taking to the streets, breaking the mold of artists who usually start with being a street performer and then graduate to something else. However, her bold moves and her good business instincts opened up opportunities to perform in places such as New Zealand and Italy. Katie Ferrara took time out recently to talk to Riveting Riffs Magazine about her new EP titled Dream Catcher.

Dream Catcher is Ferrara’s third recording, being preceded by Naturally in 2013 and before that When Love Is Not Around in 2011.

“I started (putting together) Dream Catcher in March of 2015. I was looking for a producer and I was doing a lot of busking at the time. I think the song writing is a little bit more developed (than the previous two albums) and it is deeper. (In the beginning) I just wanted something to give to people. I think I am at the point in my career now when I am really starting to think about the marketing side and I (want) to be a better songwriter. I think the EP shows that progression in my artistry.

When I was starting out I didn’t know if I was going to make music my career. I was just kind of doing it and hoping something would happen. In the last couple of years I have put a lot of my time into my music and with this release I just put a lot of thought into it compared to the other ones,” says Ferrara.  

It is easy to get excited about Katie Ferrara’s music both because her songs and her vocals are very good. It is also easy to find yourself “pulling for” this young woman, because she is Read More


The Shack Artwork One

Artwork Courtesy of Summit Entertainment, A Lionsgate Company ©

Time Sailors of Pizzolungo

Time Sailors front page photoIn a world where children have video games, high definition televisions to watch their favorite programs and parents take them to the cinema to watch the latest and greatest movies; it takes a special parent to give a child the gift of a book. Scott Abrams and Adam Blockton are the co-authors of a remarkable children’s book, Time Sailors of Pizzolungo. It is a timeless and classic adventure book that will entertain children and adults alike. More importantly this beautiful book stimulates the imagination in a warm, positive fashion in a world in which our children need to hear a message of hope and dream dreams of what someday might be and that they might become.  Join Guillermo, Piccolo, Enzo, Mario, Luca and Tony as they sail the high seas and create magic five centuries before any of these children were bornAs for staging Love Letters in Germany, Welsch explains, “It was my idea. Christina, Michael’s wife, was my former acting agent years ago and at the time he was still very busy doing TV serials. He is quite well-known in Germany. When I changed my agency and I lost track of Christina, but when I opened my gallery in September (2015), she went there and meanwhile Michael had returned to Solingen, which was his family’s home years ago. Christina and I talked about what Michael was doing and what I was doing. I always dreamt of having a literature salon, something pure, theater work at home and reading something very intimate. I asked him if he was interested in doing Love Letters. At first I felt that we might do it at their house and then I thought we might do it at my gallery. Since the feedback was so great we couldn’t do it at home. I talked to a theater contact that I had worked with already. Michael said that he always wanted to do Love Letters and we rehearsed it over and over again, usually with a good meal, because Christina is a good cook.  I agreed (to do the play) before I knew she was a good cook, so this is a very nice (benefit).”.

Scott Abrams sat down with Riveting Riffs Magazine recently to discuss this children’s Read More

 

 

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