ICYMI: Keyboardist/composer Michael Whalen, from GMA’s theme song to 2 Emmy Nominations

Featuring: Michael Whalen (2-time Emmy Award winner),
Simon Phillips (Toto),
Bob Magnuson (Frank Zappa) and Tony Levin (King Crimson)

Michael Whalen w/Simon Phillips, Bob Magnuson & Tony Levin

Combining elements of fusion “jazz”, progressive music, electronic music with Michael’s own distinctive melodic style as an Emmy® Award winning television composer, Future Shock represents a new frontier for instrumental music.

Michael Whalen is a two-time Emmy® Award winning composer who has worked in advertising, television, film and video games for over 30 years. Michael is also an internationally renown recording artist with 35 solo and soundtrack recordings to his credit. He has also produced and executive produced over 100 recordings for other artists. As well as his music work, Currently, Michael is the General Manager and the Head of A&R for myndstream. An independent label based in Los Angeles (part of The Cutting Edge Group).

A lifelong devotee of jazz fusion, world music and progressive rock, Michael’s early exposure to the music of Emerson, Lake and Palmer, Return to Forever and Keith Jarrett has been hugely formative and influential to him. Future Shock is a bringing together of all of these early experiences along with Michael’s renown gift for melody. Rather than being a showcase of “show-off” playing, this project is compositionally based with one of the best back-up bands on the planet.

The players include, longtime Toto drummer Simon Phillips. To date he has toured and recorded with many bands and artists, including: Mick Jagger, The Who, Jeff Beck, Jack Bruce, Peter Gabriel, Joe Satriani, Tears for Fears, Judas Priest, Roxy Music, Michael Schenker, Nik Kershaw, Phd., Al DiMeola, 801, Pete Townshend, Russ Ballard, Robert Palmer, Stanley Clarke, The Pretenders, Jon Anderson, Whitesnake and Dave Gilmour… to name but a few.

Multi-instrumentalist, Bob Magnuson, has played on the soundtracks of hundreds of television commercial campaigns including Coca Cola, Macy’s, AT&T, J.C. Penney, and Chevrolet. He’s recorded and performed with popular artists such as, Whitney Houston, Patti Austin, Phoebe Snow, Cleo Laine, Marc Cohn, Michael Bolton, B.B. King, Issac Hayes, Eddie Murphy, Expose, Glenn Alexander, and Frank Zappa’s Universe, to name a few. As a studio musician Bob has enjoyed playing next to saxophone greats David Sanborn, Lenny Picket, Michael Brecker, Lee Konitz, and Ronnie Cuber.

Musician and composer, specializing in electric bass, Chapman Stick and upright bass.  Tony Levin sings and plays synthesizer. Levin is best known for his work with King Crimson (since 1981) and Peter Gabriel (since 1977). He is also a member of Liquid Tension Experiment (1997–1999, 2008–2009, 2020–present), Bruford Levin Upper Extremities (1998–2000) and HoBoLeMa (2008–2010). He has led his own band, Stick Men, since 2010. A prolific session musician since the 1970s, Levin has played on over 500 albums. Some notable sessions include work with John Lennon, Sarah McLachlan, Paula Cole, Stevie Nicks, Pink Floyd, Paul Simon, Lou Reed, David Bowie, Joan Armatrading, Tom Waits, Buddy Rich, The Roches, Todd Rundgren, Seal, Warren Zevon, Bryan Ferry, Laurie Anderson, Kate & Anna McGarrigle, Gibonni, and Jean-Pierre Ferland. Additionally, he has toured with artists including Peter Gabriel, Paul Simon (with whom he appeared in the 1980 film One-Trick Pony), Gary Burton, James Taylor, Herbie Mann, Judy Collins, Carly Simon, Peter Frampton, Tim Finn, Richie Sambora, Ivano Fossati, Claudio Baglioni and Lawrence Gowan.

Levin helped to popularize the Chapman Stick and the NS upright bass. He also created “funk fingers,” modified drumsticks that attach to the fingers of the player in order to strike the bass strings. Funk fingers achieve a sound which can be compared to the “slap” style of bass playing. In 2011, Levin ranked #2 behind John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin in the “20 Most Underrated Bass Guitarists” in Paste magazine. In July 2020, Levin was ranked #42 on the “50 Greatest Bassists of All Time” list by Rolling Stone magazine.

1.Future Shock 5:58
2.Hop, Skip and Jump 4:38
3.La Hermosa Noche 5:41
4.Lights of Home 5:11
5.Memories of You 5:01
6.Poly Jam 4:59
7.Miracle Mile 5:16
8.Morning Song 3:49
9.Wanderlust 5:35
10.You Eyes, Your Touch, Your Kiss 5:47

All music composed, arranged, produced & mixed by: Michael Whalen

Michael Whalen: keyboards, synthesizers, electronic percussion & programming
Simon Phillips: drums & additional percussion
Bob Magnuson: saxophones, flute and shehnai
Tony Levin: electric & upright basses, Chapman stick

Copyright © 2021 Kari-On Productions, All rights reserved.

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