January 26, 2015
Rustic Justice provides the services required for artists to advance from the studio to center...
Rustic Justice is proud to welcome long-time friend, artist, singer-songwriter, community organizer and activist Kristoph DiMaria to it’s ranks. With The Lucky Jukebox Brigade and Ragliacci already in full bloom, we can’t wait to see what’s coming up next! Read more about Kristoph…
Pulsar Li: piano, electric piano, organ
Alex Kikuchi1-5, 7: alto, tenor, soprano saxophones
Jeff Koenitzer5-7: alto saxophone
Chris Skelly: upright & electric bass
Ryan Socrates1-4, David Landes5-7: Drum set
Music composed by Pulsar Li1-5, Jeff Koenitzer7, and Radiohead6.
Recorded at the Vlahakis Recording Studio, Carnegie Mellon University School of Music, Pittsburgh, PA as a product of the Certificate Program in Advanced Music Studies in Audio Recording and Production, under the direction of Riccardo Schulz.
Produced by Pulsar Li
Edited by Eric Damashek
Mixed by Eric Damashek and Dan Bozek1-3
Mastered by Dan Bozek
CD design by Pulsar Li
Photo by Swati Shroff
Released Friday, April 17, 2015
© all rights reserved
Peter Hazen is a musician, artist, writer, philosopher and freedom-fighter who travels the world searching… for what only he can tell you. Whether it is the force that binds us all together as a people or killer blues guitar riffs, Pete is in search of the answers; many of which you can find laced within his thoughtful tunes or on the page in his short stories and haiku. Check out more Peter Hazen and see for yourself!
Elijah Foulks goes by the alias “Knowle’ge” when it comes to matters of lyricism and Hip-Hop. It is his firm belief that music is a form of communication. Like all forms of communication, spoken or unspoken, music contains a message for the audience to intake and interpret. The lyricism of Knowle’ge began in poetry and rap at the age of 7, but wasn’t consciously cultivated in a serious manner until 17. His greatest influences include his father (who was an MC himself), his cousin Elijah Fiddemon, (who goes by the stage/producer name “Stay Tune”), and his good friend David “Dangerous” Turner (MC and founder of the Hip-Hop group “Death Before Dishonor”). These individuals are responsible for exposing Knowle’ge to Hip-Hop in all its forms; stimulating his development as a writer and performer, and showing him that a voice of truth would be taken seriously. Upon graduating from SUNY Potsdam, Knowle’ge made the choice to complete a master’s degree in English & Communications, resulting in a recess from recording music. Now that his education is complete, he has taken on two solo projects that will serve as his reintroduction into 518 Hip-Hop and set the stage for a life of music.
Most recently, Knowle’ge is featured in Josh MIRK’s latest hip-hop single “Suspicious” (Available Soon!), which was named a semifinalist out of 19,000 submissions in the International Songwriting Competition judged by Nasir Jones amongst many others.
The Ameros are a rock, reggae, hip-hop, and funk powerhouse that combines thought-provoking lyrics, incendiary guitar, party vibes, and solid harmonies into a musical revolution. Their debut album, “Backs Against the Wall” was picked as one of the best of 2011 by the Daily Gazette in Schenectady. I Am Entertainment Magazine gave it 4 out of 4 stars for songwriting, and a 3.5 out of 4 overall rating.
“The songs, primarily written by Calhoun and Muniz, showcase influences ranging from classic rock – artists like The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, and Led Zeppelin – to metal acts like Dream Theater, to hip-hop, to reggae. All these influences can be felt throughout the album, sometimes in the same song – the epic-length title track features a winding metallic riff with a midsection rap.”
Brian McElhiney – The Daily Gazette
“Each song has a different approach, making them diverse and interesting vehicles for the ideas that inspired them. They’re like several bands in one. Rap, rock and folk meld around lyrics that are consistently conscious and driven to express.”
Melissa L. Walker – Utica Music and Arts Festival
They have shared the stage with Paranoid Social Club, Rusted Root, Matt & Kim, Vanilla Ice, Naughty By Nature, Bell X-1, and Moby, and are currently touring the Northeastern United States.
The Ameros also have a reputation for being fiercely independent, and host their own DIY podcast, helping to promote other musicians, following the mantra, “we all rise together.” Not only are they a band that is on the rise, but they seek to lift those along with them up as well.
Jesse Calhoun – Lead Vocals / Rhythm Guitar
Sean Muniz – Bass/Vocals
Kiki Vassilakis – Percussion
Kawari – Lead Guitar / Back up Vocals
Hear The Ameros right here or check out their latest performances, tracks & videos at: ReverbNation, Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube or purchase their incredible LP, “Backs Against the Wall” on iTunes or Amazon today!
An incredibly beautiful world surrounds us. The sorrows and joys inherent in the human experience inspire us to achieve great heights, reach out to one another, share and simply live well in whatever way we desire. Human beings have the unique capability of uniting together their ideas and emotions with one another to create a myriad of societies that reflect the values, passions and creativity of its participants. Kristoph has been actively perpetuating that notion in the hopes of sharing music, creating art, working to right social injustice and bringing people together since he realized that the whole is often greater than the sum of its parts.
Raised in the Capital Region of Upstate NY, Kristoph DiMaria has been playing music and expressing himself since early childhood. Music, theatre, and activism have all been ongoing narratives that continue to shape the context surrounding his life into the present day. Academic merits include a Theatre Arts Certificate from the New York State Theatre Institute, an Associates Degree in Music and Vocal Performance from Schenectady County Community College and a Bachelor’s Degree in Cultural Anthropology from SUNY Albany. Professional credits include 7-piece indie-dance-wastrel-punk band “The Lucky Jukebox Brigade” since 2010, a brand-new solo folk-Americana act “Ragliacci”, several regional theatrical endeavors including the SCCC Players and Albany Civic Theater, plus a passion for responsible food and drink with New World Bistro Bar and the Charles F. Lucas Confectionery.
Participation in many local activist movements such as Albany United Against the Cabaret Law, March Against Monsanto, Occupy Albany, PANDA Take Back Tour, Albany Political Prisoners Support Committee, and most recently Rustic Justice Productions provides a platform for organizing to positively effect the milieu we live in and hopefully resonate outwards and upwards to the echelons of city, state, and federal governments appealing for a more transparent, interactive system that really listens to and genuinely cares about its people.
Come engage with Kristoph at a show with The Lucky Jukebox Brigade – also on Facebook, YouTube, and Bandcamp– or while serving up wine and charcuterie up at the Confectionery in Troy, NY. Remember that every individual is valuable in their own way and that the connections between us are growing ever more important as we continue to live and work in our time on this fledgling planet. Be aware, be responsible, love, and play on.
Singer-songwriter Carl Daniels began his career at age 12, writing and playing with various bands in and around his hometown of Clifton Park, NY. In 2011, Daniels found himself without a group project and launched on a solo career, blending soulful guitar and powerful vocals with influences like The Shins, Radiohead, The Doors, The Beatles, and Fleet Foxes. Check out more Carl Daniels on Facebook, @crldnls on Twitter, and Bandcamp.
In his debut solo EP, “Carl Daniels & The Black Box”, Daniels takes his sound to new heights as he skillfully and masterfully balances indie folk rock and blues, delivering insightful lyrics about our common experience—the daily trials and challenges that bind us all together.
Carl Daniels & The Black Box Credits
1. The More (Featuring Laura Baboulis – Vocals)
2. Chasing A Ghost (Featuring Mike Thornton – Guitar)
3. Teeth (Featuring Kate Sgroi – Bass)
4. No King, No Crown (Featuring Mike Thornton – Guitar, JC Woods-Bass)
5. Lovely Lovely
6. Drinks For Chinaski (Featuring Peter Hazen – Keys)
Artwork by Caitlin Fitzgerald Graphic layout by Alex Colaruotolo
JPlus (Jessie J. Andrews) taps into the heart and soul of hip-hop as a versatile MC, lyricist, and producer. His refreshingly silver-tongued creativity flows from a turbulent past, and serves as a call to change the social and economic inequity that saturates society.
Punchy, hard-hitting lyrics are common for MCs rising in the post-industrial ghetto, but JPlus takes the technique to the next level. Once, on a hot streak, Ms. Cleo the psychic humbly retired after failing to guess J’s delivery rhythm in the 3rd verse of “Crisis,” the ninth track on “L.Y.R.I.C.S.” JPlus perfects this technique, taking listeners on a journey of uncompromising personal and societal reflection in his latest album, “Tripolar.” (3 singles featured on “The JPlus EP”)
A paragon of clashing brilliance with a crumbling society, “Tripolar” explores the three personas J has created to survive. ‘Jessie’ is a hopeful, intelligent young man who wants to have the same opportunity to succeed, regardless of color, creed or culture. ‘JPlus’ is entrepreneurial and confident—the “Urban King”—whose street-smarts allow him to escape the toils of the ghetto. ‘Muzzle Off’ is the third, the darkest, the most ruthless, the metabolite of societal churning: he is a hateful monster who stews in blame—blame towards a world that stole his humanity and forced a personal choice between poverty or violent crime.
But can you blame him? Growing up poor, Jessie had to visit homeless shelters, watch his mother get beat, and try to make sense of his father’s abusive tendencies and repeated incarcerations. Jessie started using music to break free, because death, both figurative and literal, was the only alternative. At the young age of 8, J began his grueling upward climb, memorizing Eminem verses and spitting rhymes with his childhood friend Sin-City.
In high school, the rhyming progressed to freestyling and J was now writing his own verses daily. Soon, he realized that rap music was more important than the hypocrisies preached in school and college, and he dropped out. JPlus then started to gain local buzz, began dominating MC battles in upstate New York, and has since been developing his own vision for the future of hip-hop.
At 27, JPlus has released eight albums, many self-produced. Starting with “Wasted Talent,” spoken from the depths of poverty, each album captures a snapshot of J’s life, and features a different style. “Force of Habit” expresses his distaste for the new ‘dance hip-hop,’ a genre which dilutes the pain of the ghetto. In “New Time Sake,” JPlus balances old hip-hop styles with new commercial attributes, releasing a music video for “Never Gonna’ Stop.” J returns to witty, cerebral linguistics in “L.Y.R.I.C.S.,” no doubt earning himself a future honorary doctorate in English Composition. With a good set of ears, you’ll have no problem groovin’ to every track’s unique instrumentals, whether based in jazz, hardcore, R&B, or rock.
MIRK; an edgy 7 piece alternative hip-hop powerhouse that seamlessly blends elements of Soul, R&B, Rap, Rock and Pop into a completely original, utterly unique hit making machine. Formed in Albany, NY in 2009 and led by frontman Josh “MIRK” Mirsky, MIRK has quickly established themselves as the MUST SEE live show in the region, starting with a sellout debut performance to mark the release of their album “LOVE”. Instantly recognizable hooks, 5 part vocal harmonies, world class sax and an unrelenting rhythm section have made their live show an explosive, dance heavy in-demand event. The Band has performed alongside notable artists such as J. Cole, Mr. Cheeks, Third Eye Blind, Fabolous, Red Café, French Montana, Badfish and more.
An already accomplished producer, Josh “MIRK” Mirsky has produced tracks for and worked with artists including Jay Z, Ciara, Yung Jeezy, Petey Pablo, Mickey Factz, Eamon and many more. In 2010 MIRK was recognized by Russell Simmons and given a celebrity blog on the site GLOBALGRIND.com. The SOURCE magazine said, “Mirk Music always comes correct – with soul, style, and bearing gifts…Mr. Cheeks! This team gets the “I’m focused man” award. The music, lyrics, and stage presence are equally sealed tight. If only Drake and Ryan Leslie could see this…they’d be jealous.”
MIRK’S upcoming sophomore release “GRIND” is further evidence of genre twisting excellence, and is completely self written/produced/recorded/mixed/mastered in house. Boasting 13 new songs and a wall of sound mix approach, MIRK has also worked with graphic designer Robert Simpson to create artwork inspired by the lyrics the female form for each individual track. A futuristic approach to marketing is taken with the introduction of the MIRKcard; a swivel USB flash drive in the shape of a credit card that contains mp3’s, videos, links and allows fans to access bonus materials at live shows via MIRK’s merch table, simply by uploading new content.
With the upcoming release of their sophomore album “GRIND”, MIRK has raised the bar yet again with an 8 video promotional campaign, including the single “Beautiful music” featuring Mr. Cheeks. A national tour is set to begin in March in NYC with the official release of “GRIND” taking MIRK to SXSW , the midwest and along the east coast. Stay tuned for their new album in 2014
Most recently, Josh Mirsky’s recent hip-hop single “Suspicious” featuring Mic Lanny & Knowle’ge was named a semifinalist out of 19,000 submissions in the International Songwriting Competition judged by Nasir Jones amongst many others.
By Emily Dorr