MP3 Zan Zone - Time & Materials
Modern eclectic acoustic songs and instrumentals which are well played, poignant and deep.
10 MP3 Songs in this album (48:06) !
Related styles: FOLK: Modern Folk, FOLK: Fingerstyle
People who are interested in Neil Young Ryan Adams Josh Rouse should consider this download.
As the heart is the fundamental driving force of the human body, so the songwriter is the heart of a band. Zan Burnham has been the songwriting heart of numerous versions of his band, Zan Zone, since the early 1990''s. On two EPs and on one eleven-song CD, Zan''s award-winning songs consistently received praise. Those recordings featured electric instruments and an eclectic rock ''n'' roll format. Zan Zone is now, in 2009, releasing an all acoustic album, Time & Materials. Zan recently described writing acoustic songs this way: "Even though I''ve written a great many rock songs, there''s an intimacy that seems to feel so natural in a song composed and played on an acoustic guitar. You feel like your song expresses exactly the profound experiences and passionate feelings that inspired you to write.”
The songs on this new CD explore a panoply of emotions: The dark feelings of fear and alienation, frustration stemming from the loss of direction and purpose, melancholy and the blues, as well as the bright feelings coming from the beautiful sound of a woman''s singing, the joys of nature, and the zen-like simple pleasures found in the present moment. For every dark night of the soul, there still exists great beauty in the world which can inspire hope and the possibility of love and happiness. The songs on Time & Materials express all of these.
Back in 1995, Zan Zone released a critically acclaimed CD. The Musician''s Exchange called the eponymous album, "Way cool.....truly an original CD..... the playing is first rate and so are the grooves and songs......It''s wonderful and a definite keeper.” Time And A Word said "This very cool little album is an impressive debut disc." The Music Paper noted its variety and excellent production. Performing Songwriter said that Zan Zone "has something to say," and Rockline''s Guennivere simply stated that "This is one of the best CDs I''ve reviewed. The music is solid, the vocals are great, and I think everyone should check them out."
Together since 1991, the band found that shortly after the album was released, marriages and children caused the band to splinter and re-group a few times. While a three-song EP was released in 1997, the pressures of everyone’s family lives finally put a halt to the group in 1998.
Zan continued to practice and write while gut-renovating a 100-year old house in Brooklyn, NY, where he currently lives . He also worked on the sets of TV shows and movies, which came to play a part in the new Zan Zone CD when, in 2004, Woody Allen decided to clean out his warehouse of extra props. Among them was a drum set used in the movie Melinda And Melinda. Woody''s producer, Helen Robin, and production designer, Santo Loquasto, offered the drums to Zan. He used the drums on the 2005 EP Watching The World, and on the new album, Time & Materials, and they are featured in the band shots on the new album cover and lyric booklet. Thank you, Woody!
Drawing on decades of great folk music, acoustic blues, jazz, and fingerstyle guitarists, Time & Materials is an album of songs that are at once familiar and yet unique. While rooted in the classic styles of such singer-songwriters as James Taylor and Neil Young, and fingerstyle guitarists like Leo Kottke and Jorma Kaukonen, the songs also have similarities to contemporary singer-songwriters like David Grey, Josh Rouse, Pete Yorn, Damian Rice, Ryan Adams, and Joseph Arthur.
The core of the group consists of Zan on guitar and percussion, mandolin, dulcimer, and banjo, Justin Cawley on upright acoustic and electric bass, and Ramon Echegaray on drums and percussion. Justin is a fairly recent grad of the University of Miami''s famed jazz department. Justin continues to study with the Jazzmobile program in Harlem, and he also hosts a weekly jazz jam at the nightclub Puppets in Park Slope, Brooklyn. Ramon is a veteran of many Brazilian groups. He was essentially the house drummer for years at the well known NYC club SOB''s. Also on the new album, five additional musicians and singers add more colors to the songs, including accordion, harmonica, and fiddle.
In the 1990''s, Zan Zone frequently performed at NY clubs such as CBGBs, The New Music Cafe, Kenny''s Castaways, The Lone Star Roadhouse, Fat Tuesdays, The Bitter End, Arlene''s Grocery, The Pyramid Club, The Village Gate, and numerous others. Now, Zan Zone will be looking to play the songs from their new album at some of NYC''s premier songwriter showcase rooms like The Living Room, Rockwood Music Hall, and The Bitter End. They will also be appearing at other clubs in NYC as well as performing at other venues outside of NY.
Zan Zone is all about the song, its meaning, its essence, and its ability to convey keen observations, deep feelings and a variety of emotions. Zan Zone is also dedicated to instrumental excellence and compelling performances. Listen to the album, see them live - no one will be disappointed.
"Great job Zan! ''Better Dream'' is the bomb!" Oren Waters - singer on over 250 gold & platinum albums, including "Thriller" & albums by Paul Simon, John Fogerty, Rod Stewart, Don Henley, and many more.
"I love the instrumentals, and ''Better Dream'' makes you stop and think about stuff like your life and how you can maybe make a better dream for yourself." Doug Gorlin - Owner Hollyview Sound Recording Studio, Hollywood CA.
"Thanx for the fab CD - I love it!!!"
Joanna Hartell, Assistant Property Master, Law & Order, NYC
Time & Materials
An award-winning songwriter, Zan Burnham has been writing since the early 90s for his band Zan Zone. While previous recordings have featured electric instruments in a rock ‘n’ roll format, his latest release, Time & Materials is a stripped down acoustic approach. With mandolin, dulcimer and banjo accompaniment combined with acoustic guitar, bass and percussion, the album has an enjoyable eclectic vibe. From instrumental tracks “Skydog Salute” and “Bipolar/Hilarity Rag” to the more emotional “Better Dream,” the band’s talent is undeniable.
A mix of folk, Americana and blues, Time & Materials is a versatile release that offers much to its listeners. Whether it’s an eight minute instrumental song or a bluesier track (aptly titled “The Blues”) featuring multiple harmonica interludes, the album has that laidback, personal and at times campfire feel.
“Even though I’ve written a great many rock songs, there’s an intimacy that seems to feel so natural in a song composed and played on an acoustic guitar. You feel like your song expresses exactly the profound experiences and passionate feelings that inspired you to write,” Burnham said. I couldn’t agree more with his sentiments.
Starting off Time & Materials with “Better Dream,” the listener quickly feels the emotion in Burnham’s longing vocals. “Clock is tickin’ there upon the wall/Sunset scatters long shadows in the hall…I hear whispers and screams/Maybe there’s somethin’ better/Maybe there’s a better dream,” he sings with fitting finger picking as the questioning of life and its adequacy is displayed. In addition, a confused edginess is felt mid-song throughout the more somber lyrics.
“Carey Won’t You Sing For Me” is a more uplifting track with the man in the story requesting a beautiful song from his lady, Carey. “Carey won’t you sing along/You put such magic in a song/Your notes are never wrong,” Burnham sings. Obviously, the title says it all.
Time & Materials encompasses many instrumental tracks. While on any other album this may seem peculiar, Zan Zone proves to be the exception. Each song allows the listener to decipher as he wishes, making up his own story as the guitar or banjo plays along. The flow between each track seemingly provides the album’s own tale. Case in point: “September Rain” segues nicely after instrumental “Charles O’ Connor” so well in fact; it seems that both songs belong as one.
Whether it’s providing self introspection on “That Flame” or jamming throughout eight minute track “Skydog Salute,” Zan Zone demonstrate their prowess on each instrument. The variation keeps the listener on his toes, not quite sure what to expect next. While solely instrumental tracks are often hard to sway the listener, Zan Zone manages to keep the audience engaged, and that for any band is an impressive feat.
Reviewed by Annie Reuter, a New Jersey/New York-based freelance writer and music blogger, covers shows in and around the tri-state area. Some of her reviews and interviews have been featured on https://www.tradebit.com, https://www.tradebit.com and https://www.tradebit.com