Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Newsletter #2 Is Here

With 2010 coming to an end, I thought this might be a good time to release David Minasian Music’s Newsletter #2. It’s been about 5 months since the last one, and to say a lot has happened during the intervening time would be a monumental understatement.

Our album Random Acts of Beauty was released worldwide on October 5th. Nine weeks prior to this time, it had been available only through ProgRock Records and its sister company Mindawn and had spent all 9 of those weeks at the #1 position as the best selling album download at Mindawn. Since October 5th, the album has been available at various retail outlets all over the world including Amazon, Best Buy, Barnes & Noble, HMV, ebay, and itunes. If you don’t have the album yet, what are you waiting for! Check http://www.davidminasian.com/shop.html for a retail outlet near you.

Many of you have commented on how wonderful it has been to hear Andy Latimer of Camel in action once again after such a long absence. His guitar and vocal contributions to the album’s opening track, the 12 minute epic Masquerade, are truly amazing and again, I can’t thank Andy enough for his beautiful playing. Many of you have also expressed your enthusiasm for my son Justin’s incredible lead guitar work on the rest of the album. Both Justin and I are truly thankful for the fantastic response the album has been getting. The good reviews seem to outnumber the bad ones 20 to 1, with many of them actually leaving us speechless. Check these out:

http://www.seaoftranquility.org/reviews.php?op=showcontent&id=10039

http://s14.zetaboards.com/Zeitgeist/topic/6645473/1/

http://www.progarchives.com/Review.asp?id=313236

http://www.dangerdog.com/2010-music-reviews/david-minasian-random-acts-of-beauty-review.php

For those who might be interested in hearing what I have to say about a variety of music-related topics, I’ve recently completed a series of interviews which you can access here:

http://www.lordsofmetal.nl/showinterview.php?id=3575&lang=en

http://homenucleonics.wordpress.com/2010/10/23/interview-with-david-minasian/

http://www.progarchives.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=71509&FID=47

http://www.deliciousagony.com/

That last one is a 40 minute audio interview with Don Cassidy of Delicious Agony Progressive Rock Radio. Just click on the word ‘interviews’ on the left side of the screen and then scroll down the center until you find my name. More interviews are on their way including ones which will appear in the next editions of Terra Incognita Magazine and Cosmos/Big Bang. Just check http://davidminasian.com/news.html for all the latest news.

Random Acts of Beauty did get a mention in the October 2010 issue of Classic Rock Presents Prog Magazine (in an article featuring an interview with Camel’s Andy Latimer) and will be featured in the upcoming issues of Classic Rock and Classic Rock Presents Prog as well. Masquerade has been nominated for the ‘Best Long Track of 2010’ by ARfm Radio in England and the album seems to have become a favorite of some who are in the process of compiling various ‘Best of 2010’ lists, including Sea of Tranquility and Delicious Agony Progressive Rock Radio. Up until last week, the album had been in the running for the ‘Best Album of 2010’ on the Prog Archives website until a rather disgruntled reviewer decided to take it out. But there’s still a few days left in the year, so get your 5 star reviews into Prog Archives before Dec 31st and let’s see if you can get the album back in the running.

http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=29867

Finally, there’s a new YouTube video up that includes extended clips from all of the album’s tracks:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vqD5TEgOSkY


And for all you Camel fans, don’t forget to check out the new Camel DVD The Opening Farewell directed by yours truly. It’s an incredible performance by one of the best bands in the world. You don’t want to miss it.

http://www.camelproductions-store.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Category_Code=dvds

Those of you on the mailing list are the first to know that I have decided to re-record many of my old songs that originally appeared on the Tales of Heroes and It’s Not Too Late albums in a style similar to Random Acts of Beauty rather than try to get those old albums re-released. This process is going to take some time and there’s hopefully going to be an album of new material next year as well, so it’s not going to be anytime soon, but it will happen eventually. At least that’s the plan for now.

Happy Holidays to all and best wishes for the New Year.
David

Friday, September 10, 2010

Mellotron Man

A few weekends ago, Justin and I had the great pleasure of attending a special screening of a couple of music documentary films in Hollywood - The Moody Blues at the Isle of Wight and Mellodrama: The Mellotron Movie. The directors of both films were there along with Mike Pinder, original keyboardist for the Moody Blues. Mike graciously took time out to speak with Justin and I. It was Mike Pinder who probably had more of an impact and influence on my playing and arranging style than any other keyboardist. I can honestly say that Random Acts of Beauty would not exist were it not for Mike and his work with the Moodies. Thanks Mike!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

CD's Have Arrived

For the musician, there's nothing more satisfying than holding a copy of your own hot-off-the-press CD in your hands for the very first time. For me the release of Random Acts of Beauty on CD today represents the culmination of an incredible journey that started with Masquerade a little over a year ago. Although I've already heard the songs a zillion times, I played the album all the way through as soon as it arrived. I must say, Chris Brown out of Nashville did a tremendous job of mastering the CD - this is the best it's sounded to date.

For those of you who ordered the CD through ProgRock Records, your copies will begin shipping out right away. Justin and I sat down and signed copies for the first 100 of you who ordered the album through ProgRock.

Earlier in the week, I did an interview with Don Cassidy of Delicious Agony Radio out of New York which should post to their website shortly. Check davidminasian.com for all the latest details. The ARfm UK radio show Rock On hosted by Shane Carlson last week featured the world broadcast premier of four tracks from Random Acts of Beauty. And according to Shane, the show was very well received. Reviews of the album are beginning to pour in from around the world and so far have been mostly positive. For example, take a look at the review posted by Dr. Nick on the Amazon.com UK website.

Incidentally at this very moment, the album is amazingly at the number one and number two position on Mindawn.com - the sister company of ProgRock where you can get downloads. How can one album hold two positions you ask? Well, Mindawn is currently offering two versions of the album - the regular version, and a high quality 'flac' version. In addition, four individual tracks are currently in the top 10 - Masquerade at #1, Frozen In Time at #4, Blue Rain at #7, and Storming The Castle at #10. What can I say except thank you!!

I truly hope you all enjoy the album. I'd like to hear from you after you've had a chance to listen to it.

Cheers;
Dave

Friday, July 30, 2010

#8? Really??

Hi all:
Since the completion of the album, things have been happening at lightening speed around here. Downloads are now available from Mindawn.com, and listings for the Random Acts of Beauty CD have started popping up all over the place, such as on Amazon and Prog Archives. Speaking of Prog Archives, one surprise was to find myself today at the #8 position on the website's most popular artist list. What?? The album is still a week away from being shipped! Some of you may know that ProgArchives.com is the biggest of all the progressive rock websites on the net. It lists thousands of progressive bands from all over the world and ranks the 40 most popular bands each day. In front of me were Yes, Genesis, King Crimson, and Rush - obviously. But I found myself ahead of acts such as Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, Steve Hackett, Renaissance, The Flower Kings, Kansas, and even Camel. What's going on?? Has everyone simply gone mad???

Happy, yet confused;
Dave

www.davidminasian.com

Saturday, July 24, 2010

New David Minasian Album Random Acts of Beauty Out Now!

Well here it is… Newsletter #1 from David Minasian Music. The new album Random Acts of Beauty by David Minasian is officially in the can. Whew! Some of you have been with us since the journey began about a year ago. And I want to thank you all for your continuing encouragement and support. The reaction so far to the music has been overwhelmingly positive, with some folks in prog circles already referring to it as one of the albums of the year. I don’t know about that, but my hope is that many of you will enjoy it. I know a lot of you are anxious to hear Camel guitarist Andrew Latimer’s contribution to the album’s epic opening track Masquerade.

The CD has a street date release of October 5, 2010 and that’s when it will hit the stores. By then you will be able to find it at all the usual places such as your local CD store, Amazon, itunes, etc. However, those wishing to get their hands on copies right away can order them directly from ProgRock Records beginning today. They will most likely be shipped to you in early August. Not only will you get a $2 discount (for a limited time), but the first 100 orders made through ProgRock will receive a copy that has been signed by Justin and I:

http://www.progrockrecords.com/artists/view.php?id=143

And those of you looking for downloads will be able to get them at Mindawn fairly soon:

http://www.mindawn.com/

The album’s track listing is as follows:
1) Masquerade (12:32)
2) Chambermaid (8:53)
3) Storming The Castle (5:29)
4) Blue Rain (7:44)
5) Frozen In Time (14:37)
6) Summer’s End (8:00)
7) Dark Waters (5:12)

The album’s musicians are as follows:
David Minasian: Keyboards (Grand piano, mellotron, harpsichord, moog, pipe organ, organ, cello, violin, oboe, flute, recorder, clarinet, French horn, cornet, dulcimer, sitar, voices), acoustic 12 string guitar, classical guitar, bass, drums, percussion, lead and harmony vocals.
Justin Minasian: Electric lead and rhythm guitars, acoustic and classical lead guitars (tracks 2-7)
Guy Pettet: Drums (tracks 3, 5)
Don Ray Reyes Jr.: Drums (track 5)
Nick Soto: Electric rhythm guitar (track 2)

With special guest:
Andrew Latimer: Guitars and vocals (track 1)

There’s a few people I’d like to thank at this time: My son Justin Minasian for his brilliant guitar work and enthusiastic attitude; Camel’s Andrew Latimer for his encouragement and beautiful guitar and vocal contributions to Masquerade; Guy Pettet, Don Ray Reyes Jr., and Nick Soto for their expert musicianship; Shawn Gordon, President of ProgRock Records for his unwavering belief; Michael Leadingham for his breathtaking cover art; and Lara Feamster, Ashley Danielle, Mike Gillmore, and Joel Minasian for their superb photography.

And now here’s where you come in. Please join with us in helping to get the word out. After listening to the album, if you like it, then by all means post something on the internet about it during the next few months… or write a review and submit it to Amazon.com or ProgArchives.com or any number of retail or music review sites.

In addition, spending a few moments to post items about the album on facebook or on various band forums that have similar musical styles or other progressive music sites will be essential to the album’s success in the days to come. And it will be greatly appreciated! This type of internet ‘word of mouth’ really does work wonders.

One other thing: Please do what you can to stop any download piracy of this album that you might come across. Don’t hesitate to let us know if you find something suspicious. It’s a far bigger problem than you can imagine especially for independent releases such as this and it could very well threaten whether or not we can continue making music for you.

Let us know if there are additional items you may want such as t-shirts or posters featuring Michael’s beautiful cover art. If enough people tell us they want such items we’ll look into making them available. And again, thank you all for being part of this and joining us on this wonderful journey. You can contact us anytime at davidminasianmusic@gmail.com.

Cheers;
David Minasian
www.davidminasian.com

Monday, July 19, 2010

Done!

Finished! Time for a nap...

Monday, June 21, 2010

Down To The Wire

Hi all:
You'll be happy to know Justin is doing better and we've resumed our work on the album's final track, Frozen In Time. Michael Leadingham has completed the artwork for the CD cover and it is breathtaking. It will be revealed soon. Our distribution agreement with ProgRock Records has been signed and we've been added to their website. A release date will be announced during the first half of July if all goes well. And the website has reopened. Look for our first official newsletter in the weeks ahead and join the mailing list if you haven't already.

Cheers;
Dave

www.davidminasian.com

Monday, June 7, 2010

Good News Bad News

A lot of things have happened this past week, some good and some not so good. I'll start with the bad news first. Poor Justin sadly dislocated his shoulder this past weekend which resulted in a painful trip to the hospital. Not only has our work on the album's final track been brought to a grinding halt, but Justin also had to cancel an important gig with another band he plays with. The reopening of our website has now been delayed as well. But he seems to be in good spirits and anxious to get back into things. Let's hope for a quick recovery.

On a brighter note, a face to face meeting last week with Shawn Gordon, President of ProgRock Records went extremely well and negotiations should be wrapped up shortly with a release date for the album soon to follow. Also, talented fantasy artist Michael Leadingham has been commissioned to paint an original piece of artwork for the CD cover and from the looks of things so far, it's going to be stunning!

Thank you all for your continued encouragement and support.

Best;
Dave

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Light At The End Of The Tunnel

It's been over a month since I posted anything. Things have been rather chaotic to say the least. Some of you have noticed that the website has been down for a few weeks. We're giving it a minor overhaul while we prepare for the album's completion and release. Once we reopen (which should hopefully be soon) you may want to take a look at something new on there called David's Guide to Random Acts of Beauty under the discography section, where I give a behind-the-scenes commentary on each of the album's tracks. I also explain the reason behind certain last minute song title changes and talk about a few tracks which didn't make the cut.

Following the posting of a brief audio excerpt from the track Masquerade on our website, we received numerous emails from Camel fans all over the world who were delighted to hear a preview of Andy's beautiful contributions to the track.

Justin and I are right now in the process of finishing up the album's final song, an epic joint composition which will likely end up being the album's longest track.

We're also scheduled to finalize a worldwide distribution deal next week, and we'll be organizing the CD's artwork, printing, and mastering very soon as well. So things are looking good. Hang in there...

All the best;
Dave

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Another Busy Week

This last weekend yielded a mix of the 12 and a half minute track Masquerade featuring the wonderful guitars and vocals of Andy Latimer. I've sent a copy off to Andy to get his evaluation and have my fingers firmly crossed. We hope to put up some audio clips on the website in addition to MySpace and Facebook within the next few days.

Justin and I have one track to finish up - the epic instrumental which will in all likelyhood get a name change before we're through.

We continue to update the website with new things so check it out when you have some time. We hope to set up a mailing list shortly so you can be kept up to date on all the activities.

Best wishes to all of you, and thank you for your continued support.

Dave
www.davidminasian.com

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Stop The Presses

It's a beautiful sunny Easter afternoon here in California and we just had a 7.2 earthquake a few moments ago. We're a little shaken up (no pun intended... ok it was intended) but we're ok.

We should hopefully be mixing the nearly 13 minute epic Masquerade sometime next week and will be putting up some audio clips on the website soon thereafter. We're now aiming to complete the album sometime in May. If you have some extra time, you may wish to check out David Minasian Music on Facebook and become a 'fan'.

Cheers;
David Minasian
www.davidminasian.com

Monday, March 8, 2010

No Longer Untitled

A busy weekend in the studio has proven to be very fruitful. After a number of failed attempts at trying to mix the very complicated and highly over-produced (lol) Chambermaid, we finally succeeded and have added some clips to the website:

www.davidminasian.com

I also managed to finish the lyrics to the previously untitled track which shall now be known henceforth as Summer's End. Justin pulled out all stops on this one and came up with what has got to be one of the most amazing guitar solos in all of rock history. You can hear a brief segment for yourself at the website under the audio/visual link.

Andy Latimer mentioned that my moog solo (which can be heard on Panic Attack clip #1) reminded him of the late great Pete Bardens of Camel. Thanks for that, Andy!

I know that in my original post I stated that I thought we'd be finished by now, but things always seem to get in the way. But we're nearly there - 5 songs completely mixed and in the can and only two more to go. Shouldn't be long now...

Cheers;
Dave

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Website Is Up!

My son Justin has been pulling double duty as guitarist extraordinaire and website designer. The website is now up and running with a couple of soundclips. Check out:

www.davidminasian.com

Only a few things are working at the moment (Home, Bio, Blog, and Audio/Visual - which is where you can hear the samples)

Vampyre has been completed and mixed and once again Justin's powerful guitar leads are the highlight. You can hear a snippet of it on the sample, along with an excerpt of his gorgeous Blue Rain leads.

We're in the middle of recording the untitled track at the moment and if the past is any indication, I'll probably have the whole song finished sans vocals before I write the lyrics. This one's turning out very Floydish-Camelish-Moodyish-Crimsonish. In other words, very "Dave."

Cheers;
David Minasian

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Guest Vocalist Revealed

Well, it's time to reveal the identity of the guest vocalist who was to have appeared on our album... It was none other than Justin Hayward of the Moody Blues. Unfortunately, he won't be appearing on the track Blue Rain due to scheduling conflicts. However, he did have some nice things to say about the song, a track which, even without his assistance, has wound up sounding eerily similar to something the Moody Blues themselves would have recorded around the time of Seventh Sojourn...

"It's a lovely song... The guitar solo sound is fabulous and it's a very Moody track. I'm sure it will be a great album for David." (Justin Hayward, January 7, 2010)

Although understandably disappointed, I was still very encouraged by Mr. Hayward's enthusiasm for my own vocals which will now grace the final version of the song instead of his...

"I don't think they need me anyway as I really like the feel of the vocal on there already." (Justin Hayward, January 7, 2010)

I think a lot of people besides myself would have loved to have heard Andy Latimer and Justin Hayward appear on the same album.

I have now completed the work I was scheduled to do on Camel's forthcoming DVD The Opening Farewell and will be heading back into the studio momentarily.

Best;
Dave