MP3 Leon Vest - So Blue
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8 MP3 Songs
ROCK: Progressive Rock, POP: California Pop
LeonVest is an original band/songwriting team performing primarily in the San Francisco Bay Area.
BAND FEATURES: singer/songwriter SANDY LEON VEST - keyboards and vocals, JAMES VEST (other half of Leon Vest songwriting team) - keyboards and bass, Tom Duarte - guitar (played w/Merle Saunders), Garth Webber - guitar (played w/Miles Davis, Greg Allman, Mose Alison, Bill Champlin, Kingfish with Bob Weir, Cold Blood...), Brent Rampone - drums (New Riders of the Purple Sage), Mike Prichard - percussion (It's A Beautiful Day).
As songwriters, the team of Sandy Leon Vest and James Vest are as gifted as they are prolific - so prolific, in fact, that the band rarely has time to play all of their original material during the course of one show. LeonVest features a world class band of musicians and a compelling repetoire of original material, which is what their SF Bay Area fan base wants to hear.
LeonVest's local fan base currently consists of SF Bay Area locals, many of whom know the words to all of their songs and want to hear Leon Vest original material; but recently their local base has fanned out to the east coast and as far away as Latin America and Europe. LeonVest is presently recording their upcoming CD, ALIVE BY REQUEST, at Red Rooster Recording Studio in Berkeley with their band (and featuring saxophonist and friend Paul Mc Candless, Bolinas' local celeb of Bela Fleck and Oregon).
Review appearing in the local "Bolinas Hearsay News":
LEON VEST AT SMILEYS FRIDAY NIGHT
In the world of music, the songwriting team of LeonVest is nothing less than a breath of fresh air. Whether you're already a diehard LeonVest fan or only recently heard the buzz, you won't want to miss LeonVest at Smileys on Friday night. Once you've experienced the compelling sounds of this original songwriting team and their remarkable cast of musicians, you'll know why their grassroots fan base in West Marin has blossomed into a local phenomenon. Together with their band, Sandy Leon Vest and songwriting partner James Vest have managed to create a sound that sparkles with originality, yet waxes evocative of the idealism and romanticism that graced the music of the sixties and seventies. LeonVest's songwriting has been finely crafted over their years of performing and playing in Marin County, and it shows - more today than ever before. The songs of LeonVest are lyrically poetic, while at the same time reflecting a fiercely political point of view.
Sandy LeonVest's melodies, lyrics and whimsical vocal style supported by a driving percussion section of world class musicians (see flyer above) simply deliver the goods. LeonVest offers much more than a musical performance of the highest order. Their music produces an undeniable high that transforms the room - and the people in it. See you at the show!
Derek Tracy (DTI Records - President)
A word from Sandy Leon Vest:
I think probably the most compelling thing about LeonVest is our unabashed originality and our love for playing the music...we dont pretend (nor aspire, for that matter) to be anything other than who we are - and who we are is a diverse group of SF Bay Area musicians who love the songs and love playing them together - and our sound reflects exactly that...we all grew up with the (Marin-based) Sons of Champlin, the Beatles, Joni Mitchell, Miles Davis, Hendrix, Dylan, Chrissie Hynd, Fleetwood Mac, Traffic...
LeonVest - and the material - is quite literally in a class all by itself and our audience is growing rapidly as the material evolves. I think what resonates with our fans is that while LeonVest's songs are uniquely original, they hearken back to a more idealistic era - melodic and even romantic, yet with a funky, no-holds-barred groove. We've been described as 'psychedelic, hard-driving and idealistic all at the same time,' and I think that's accurate...
These days I listen a lot to Cold Play (love Chris Martin), MJ Blige, Dave Matthews...I like Sara McLaughlin, Alanis Morissette, of course, U2...
Enjoy the CD!
Sandy Leon Vest
LEON VEST'S PERSONAL STORY:
On August 6, 2001, after working for years as a political journalist and songwriter/recording artist, I was diagnosed with a sub-type of Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma considered "clinically terminal" (because it rarely responds favorably to chemotherapy). Although mostly I feel quite well, I am told that at this point only a very radical procedure, known as a "stem cell transplant" can save my life. Still, I am an optimist, and have made it my mission to prove that statistics do not always tell the story of the person.
In December, 2004, just before Christmas, my husband and songwriting partner James Vest was diagnosed with Leukemia - also currently considered an incurable hematological cancer.
Today our primary source of hope and inspiration is eachother, our band and the music we write and play together. We both hope and believe we can save our lives through the performance, recording and subsequent sales of our original music.
Our community in West Marin has been amazing. When I was first diagnosed with NHL, a group of friends set up an account, "Friends of Sandy Leon Vest." The donations to that fund helped save my life. But that was in 2001 and despite thousands of dollars donated, the money was quickly absorbed by medical expenses not covered by insurance. At this point, LeonVest would prefer to garner support through our music. We are not interested in begging for donations. We have a beautiful gift to offer and our new CD (ALIVE BY REQUEST) is scheduled for release in early 2006. Our first album, SO BLUE can be purchased now at https://www.tradebit.com.
James and I have a lot of faith in ourselves, the universe, our friends and families, our karma, and most especially our music. We continue to believe that our efforts, determination and love will see us through...meanwhile we are determined to come up with a plan for getting our music to the public. Our hope is to keep ourselves and the music alive by continuing to write and play great original material.
Our new CD is without a doubt the best work we've ever done. We think once people listen, they will want to have both CDs - and the added satisfaction of knowing that by purchasing these CDs, they are quite literally "keeping the music alive."
Donations can be sent to: Friends of Sandy Leon Vest, Box 734, Bolinas, CA 94924; checks made out to: Friends of Sandy Leon Vest.
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