MP3 Brent Magstadt - ROCK: Funk Rock
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10 MP3 Songs
ROCK: Funk Rock, ROCK: Acoustic
"Typically, I lean towards music with a more progressive slant, but there are often times when the simplest of acoustic guitar riffs can really carry me away." On Brent Magstadt's self-titled solo release, these elements definitely come into play.
Commenting on the disc: "There's a mean rock Samba groove that really makes me want to jump up; the disc is intro'd with an experimental vocal piece, and my friend Annie (Roberts) joined me on cello for 'Edifice of Life,' which is really nice listening."
Lots to hear, across many genres. And all the musicians on the CD currently live on Vashon Island, in Puget Sound just outside of Seattle. Local, yet universal.
Magstadt grew in Missoula, Montana, listening to the rock bands of the seventies: Boston, Kansas, Yes. Rush was just breaking out. These acts had great influence on him. It's obvious that -- as a guitar player -- Brent loves to grab those high energy power chords, yet there's also a not-so-subtle tingeing if jazz influence on this disc. Check out the generous dashes of saxophone and trumpet throughout. The horn punches on 'Percolator,' or the 5/4 power fusion in the middle of 'Journey,' which resolves into a very sweet guitar solo.
After playing around in the early eighties with a couple of power rock bands, Brent decided to check out higher learning within the musical arena and enrolled in a private music school in Studio City, CA, to study jazz. "That experience was definitely life changing. No more being tied to patterns on the neck or wondering what people meant when they referred to 'stepping outside.'"
While in class, Magstadt also worked for a gear rental company, tweaking and delivering tape machines to light and heavyweight studios in the L.A. area. Brent then moved back to Montana and enrolled in the University of Montana to pursue a music degree. This is where the classics took a hold of him. "I remember this one birthday ... my girlfriend had tickets to a string trio performance. We did dinner and then hit the theater for this show. I was right in front, and the intensity was amazing. They were playing Beethoven's Sting Trio in G minor, I think. It was one of those epiphany moments where the tears suddenly well up -- it's just that powerful."
Following that experience, it seemed composition was the natural choice, and that's where he's been ever since, composing jingles, filming and scoring a short video in the early nineties; even writing over 40 individual pieces in 3 days for a software sales CD-Rom -- and moving into more of a fusion style.
"I was playing with a small ensemble and the band had the ability to both go into some pretty wild places, and to play fairly difficult compositions. It was an absolute kick. From there, I became hooked on that groove sound -- like early Billy Cobham, Jeff Beck, Chick Corea Electric Band, Weather Report. I started writing pieces in this style." Listen to the disc.
Classical music is still a huge influence on Magstadt. For this release, he wrote a cello line to accompany the acoustic-based "Edifice of Life." Annie Roberts' great cello playing accents this song perfectly in both intensity and tone. "She's great, I love her playing, and hope to do more pieces with Annie."
Next up? "Likely all instrumental, unless the voice is used as an instrument also, not for text delivery. And definitely avant-garde, left of center." Brent is focusing on pulling in eastern musical influences, and coupling them with the rock he loves so much, to build more grooves from various sources -- just to see what happens.
One thing that will remain throughout the music of Brent Magstadt, however, is his love of the guitar as a rock instrument. "For pure tonal energy, it's amazing. There can be this most wondrous and beautiful piano or string or acoustic line going on, and mixing in accented power chords behind just does amazing things to the momentum."
Magstadt is right. Check out the disc, available now on CDBaby!
in partnership with CDbaby (ID 443805)
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