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  1. The drums being a rhythmic – as opposed to a melodic – instrument, songwriting is not a natural progression for drummers.  But drummers can be multi-instrumentalists and well-rounded musicians, and do cross over, sometimes to outstanding results.

    As a songwriter who started with drums as a teenager, then learned to play basic parts on the keyboard – just so I could play the melodies I was hearing in my head – the following drummer-songwriters have made particularly strong impressions on me: 

     

  2. 120414-Toto-TurnBackAlbumCover

    The percussions on Toto’s “Africa” were my guide when composing and recording “Tierra del Fuego” and clearly influenced the feel of the track… so today allow me to pay homage to one of pop-rock’s all-time greatest bands.

    Style

    "Pop-rock" doesn't quite do them justice in fact.  Toto’s style has always been one of fusion. Their self-titled 1978 debut fused disco and prog-rock.  While the prog-rock influences remained dominant on the first 3 albums, a wide range of other styles have fused in and out of the Toto “sound” over the years, including many flavors of "world" music, jazz, funk, hard rock, California "FM" pop-rock, and ballads...

     The band further demonstrated its musical prowess and versatility by writing and producing the mostly-orchestral soundtrack to David Lynch’s 1984 “Dune”.

    If it’s impossible to pin Toto down to a specific musical style, there is however a definite Toto “sound” that emerges from its distinctive, sophisticated and melodic songwriting, vocals and playing techniques…

  3. 120402-EnriqueIglesiasWith the spotlight on Latin-flavored “Tierra del Fuego” this month I am going to focus the next few blog entries on Latin pop.

    Who better to start with than the “King of Latin Pop” himself Enrique Iglesias.

    Enrique, son of 1970s Spanish superstar Julio Iglesias, started his Spanish-language recording career in the mid-1990s and broke onto the US charts with 1999’s “Bailamos”, part of the “Wild Wild West” movie soundtrack.  The single went to no.1 in the US and Enrique’s native Spain, and in the top 10 in many other countries.

    Since then, Enrique has alternated albums in English and Spanish and sold over 100 million records worldwide.

    His best-selling single to date is “Hero” from his sophomore English-language album, 2001’s “Escape”.

    While his looks and sexiness are 100% Latin-hot, his music has evolved from his Spanish roots into a more global dance-pop sound, particularly on his last 3 albums, 2003’s “7”, 2007’s “Insomniac” and 2010’s “Euphoria”...


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