||From the Vault...
"Fresh Aire II"
© American Gramaphone Reco
Year of Release: 1977
The First Door
The Second Door
The Third Door
The Fourth Door
The Fifth Door
The Sixth Door
A Shade Tree
Going To Another Place
Mannheim Steamroller related sites:
"Fresh Aire II"
"The Fresh Aire albums have always been inspired by the eclectic
possibilities of various musical styles, as well as inspiration, technically
based on the various forms of performance."
-- Chip Davis
Chip Davis said it best, concerning his Fresh Aire releases for
Mannheim Steamroller. His popularity with these albums have proven that
music can be incorporated into the next level -- combining various styles such
as Classical, New Age Jazz, Theatrical, and even Medieval themed music.
What is also inspiring, is that the Fresh Aire series started in
the late 1970s (Volumes 1-3), long before New Age music would become popular
in the 1980s, likewise Classical, which has always been popular, but not as
fast growing, as it would become in later decades.
The short intro "Chorale" has a more Medieval-styled sound, as heard
in the Royal entrance. "Chorale" blends into what is called the Door
Series: "The First Door", "The Second Door", "The Third Door", "The Fourth
Floor", "The Fifth Door", "The Sixth Door" and "Door Seven". The
first and second doors blend in together; the third and fourth are both
individual songs on their own; the fifth, sixth and door seven blend into
one another as well. All in all, they have the medieval theme, as in such
classic solo albums released by former Yes keyboardist Rick Wakeman
(King Arthur, Softsword to name just a few...)
"Door Seven" blends into "Fantasy," as the piano on
"Fantasy" finishes the medieval-styled sound. "Chorale",
the 7 Door pieces, plus "Fantasy" are meant to be played continuously,
for pure entertaining enjoyment.
"Interlude V" is simply a beautiful relaxing Classical piano piece, and
again, it is easily compared to the solo piano works of Rick Wakeman
(Heritage Suite, Country Airs to name a few...)
The piano stands out again on "Velvet Tear," accompanied by other
sources of musical instruments. Yet, it is another classic piece of relaxing
piano music, very impressive, and is also great mood music.
Classic accoustic guitar is played beautifully on "A Shade Tree,"
with a full orchestra; another truly beautiful relaxing song. "Toota Lute"
and "Going To Another Place" is best described as Irish/Celtic music,
featuring the flutes and full orchestra accompaninent.
Each Fresh Aire album represents a theme -- The first four represented
the four seasons. Fresh Aire II represented the Fall season. The
remaining four (Fresh Aire V, VI, 7, 8) represented mankind's curiosities:
To the Moon, Greek Mythology, Mystic 7 and Infinity. No matter
what the season or curiosity, any Fresh Aire album can be enjoyed at any
time of the year.
Talented musicians such as Chip Davis and Rick Wakeman takes music into
another dimension and sound. Listening to their albums bring a breath of
Fresh Air to those who look for something different in music.
Incorporating music themes such as Classical, New Age Jazz, and even Progressive
Rock (as in Emerson, Lake & Palmer) have always turned heads into a positive
direction for those looking for that different approach in music. Listening
to Chip Davis proves that music can be enjoyed more, and is a break away from
the common popular styled music heard on regular pop radio playlists.
As the title says, take a Fresh Aire approach into the music of Chip
Davis and Mannheim Steamroller. It is definitely worth the cool breezes and
musical differences you will easily recognize.
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