Produced and arranged by Ken DeAngelis & Julie Ziavras at JAZ Music Productions, Inc.
Ken and Julie: vocals and acoustic guitars.
Ken: accordion, keyboards, harmonica, keyboards, hand percussion.
GUEST ARTISTS: Steve Bernstein, mandolin; Doug Heinsman, flute, Elana Meyers, cello, Paula Mlyn, piano and Barry Wiesenfeld, bass.
“Ken and Julie: love, energy, songwriting talent, two great and diverse voices... the pure talent of DeAngelis and Ziavras combine to generate some real gems, sparkling with energy and life.” (Cindy Hill, CDReviews.com)
Singer/songwriter Ken DeAngelis and soprano Julie Ziavras present acoustic, original, contemporary folk music with story telling, thought provoking lyrics, rich harmonies, and a strong repertoire of contemporary and traditional folk covers. They appear either as a duo or as Ken and Julie & the Eclectic Folk Project with up to six additional players including; bass, cello mandolin, flute, piano and hand percussion, adding depth and diversity to their sound.
Ken and Julie's recently released debut album entitled "The Dream" features 16 of Ken's original songs. The music and lyrics tell stories, often describing personal experiences, and reviewers have described them as "personal, yet universal in scope, poignant and heartfelt.” The songs focus on critical events in people's lives; events that will end in tragedy or growth, taking listeners through an emotional journey. Ken and Julie perform these songs as a beautiful and lyrical story of life.
"Together they make wonderfully detailed music that features evocative lyrics, lovely harmonies and melodies that stay with you long after you hear them." (Steve Isreal, Times Herald Record)
Ken and Julie's music is heard in concerts, folk venues and festivals throughtout the Northeastern US, on radio, and webcasts with The Art Music Coffeehouse, RelaxRadio, Perth, Australia and on Ellopia TV in Greece. They have been recipients of the New York State Council of the Arts Grants. In 2005, Ken & Julie completed a concert tour of six cities in Nova Scotia. "Civil Defense Drill" was chosen to be part of a compilation album entitled "Protest Songs for a Better World, Vol. II" released in summer '07, which receives worldwide airplay. The Dream" is part of the distinguished Peace Autograph Project collection at the International Museum of Peace and Solidarity in the Republic of Uzbekistan.
"...the folk world should keep a weather eye open for DeAngelis' future compositions; he may well become the rudder for the next generation of contemporary American folk songwriters." (Cindy Hill, CDReviews.com)
Singer/songwriter Ken DeAngelis, a native of the Hudson Valley, NY, studied music, accordion and songwriting at an early age, teaching himself guitar and harmonica. His original songs incorporate his unique guitar flat and fingerpicking styles. “DeAngelis demonstrates remarkable breadth and technical skill, avoiding the rote sameness that many singer-songwriters fall into…the keys and chord progressions vary widely, with themes and pace running from the silly to the sublime,” (Cindy Hill,CDReviews.com) making his music expressive, "vivid and riveting"(Richard Ross, The River Reporter). Ken has been featured on radio, television, at numerous song festivals and has won awards at song competitions. He has performed with the "Fast Folk" organization of NYC and has shared the stage with prominent artists in the folk scene such as Pete Seeger, Cliff Eberhardt, Artie and Happy Traum, Richard Schindell, blues artist Savoy Brown, among others.
Soprano Julie Ziavras, is known for her diversity of repertory and styles and her ability to infuse a classical technique with the popular and folk genres. She has been featured as both a folk and classical singer in concert, radio and television in the U.S. and abroad in a repertory ranging from opera and traditional folk, to Greek and international ballads. She holds both bachelor and master's degrees from the Manhattan School of Music. A New York Times reviewer described her as "an estimable vocalist with a silvery voice…cradling her guitar, Miss Ziavras sang a variety of Greek numbers , plaintive to rhythmic, then rounded out the set with a group of English folk ballads…she held the spotlight alone." Dr. James Cotter of the Times Herald Record said that "Soprano Julie Ziavras masters the most difficult instrument, wowing her Montgomery listeners with her warm and compelling voice, appealing presence and wide range of repertoire… pour(ing) her full energy into each number with virtuosity and verve." She is also featured on CdBaby with her solo album "Simply Mavroudis", a collection of songs recorded for her tour of Greece and sung in Greek.
"Husband and wife duo Ken DeAngelis and Julie Ziavras present the first public offering of their musical marriage in their self-produced album The Dream, sixteen songs composed by DeAngelis, the songwriter half of the partnership. A collection of wholly original works is an awesome undertaking, and DeAngelis demonstrates remarkable breadth and technical skill, avoiding the rote sameness that many singer-songwriters fall into when stacking one composition after another. The keys and chord progressions vary widely, with themes and pace running from the silly (like 'Civil Defense Drill,' a tongue-in-cheek fond remembrance of those childhood under-the-desk exercises those of us over 40 all recall) to the sublime. Ziavras' classically trained soprano rings particularly true on DeAngelis' aching ballads like 'Great Neck Farewell,' yet blends well with DeAngelis' folky alto in vocally complex weaves on 'Timber Wolf.' The duo is joined by a handful of musician friends; Steve Bernstein's mandolin work and Elana Myers' cello strains in particular add depth and diversity to the disc.
The pure talent of DeAngelis and Ziavras combine to generate some real gems, sparkling with energy and life. 'Splash,' 'Hanging on to Every Word,' and 'Friday Next to the Sea' are all heartfelt additions to the folk genre that are likely to find themselves worked into other performer's repertoires around the folk festival circuit.
…all the elements are here for a highly successful folk music future for Ken and Julie: love, energy, songwriting talent, two great and diverse voices, and a community of talented musical friends ready to jump in and fill out the sound. Singer-songwriters would be well advised to listen carefully to this disc and learn how to keep their sound fresh and interesting over the course of a full-length set of original pieces; dj's for folk and college stations looking for fresh material will find plenty of play-worthy pieces amidst the sixteen tracks. And the folk world should keep a weather eye open for DeAngelis' future compositions; he may well become the rudder for the next generation of contemporary American folk songwriters.”
Cindy Hill, CDReviews.com
"A pair of delightful composer/folksingers. Their eclectic selections of original songs and adaptations of other people’s work featured gentle harmony and beautiful resonance. Their lilting songs filled the café and captivated the audience. Each song had a story or connection to it that made their short set vivid and riveting. One of these included an original by Ken called 'The Dream,' a great rendition of 'The Kid' and a song that was written to commemorate Ken’s long-overdue cruise to the Bahamas. That tune, entitled 'Splash' was named after a Canadian band he met while on board. They concluded with a beautiful duet called 'Kate and the Ghost of Lost Love.'" -Richard Ross, The River Reporter
"They have been making quite a stir in the Hudson Valley with their beautiful harmonies and haunting songs. Their harmonies are pure and sweet, and their lyrics thought provoking. They say that music soothes the savage beast. When you hear these two sing and play together you will know why the phrase was coined." -Bodles Opera House
"Songs for an artistic experience" -Sandy Tomcho, Times Herald Record
"...when they took the stage together, in short - it was magic." -Restoration Coffeehouse
"Ken is among the best of the Hudson Valley singer/songwriters". -Mane Productions
"Best Folk Singing duo 2002: Listen, hear and explore something in their hearts" -Chris Farlekas, Times Herald Record