A new generation of musicians produced by Will Ackerman, the founder of Windham Hill Records...
||Bread of Angels
||Intimacy (Into Me See)
||Porch With a View
||The Brightest Night
||Hide and Seek
||The Color of Sunshine
||Dawn On Red Mountain
||Shades of You
- Genre: New Age: Contemporary Instrumental
- Release Date: 2012
Produced by Will Ackerman
1. MASAKO Glastenbury, Vermont (3:22)
From her album MASAKO
Masako : piano
P 2012 Masako
In the Green Mountains of Vermont, which is now my chosen home, is the ghost town of Glastenbury.
I hope my song captures the mystery of this place from which people have vanished and Bigfoot has been sighted.
2. PAUL JENSEN Taoist Winds (2:41)
From his album THE OTHER SIDE
Paul Jensen guitar, Eugene Friesen cello,
Noah Wilding vocals, Corin Nelsen Ting Sha bells
P 2008 Paul Jensen (BMI)
3. STANTON LANIER Bread of Angels (4:00)
From his album A THOUSAND YEARS
Stanton Lanier piano, Noah Wilding vocals
Selection Stanton Lanier (BMI)
P 2011 Music to Light the World, Inc.
Inspired by Psalm 78:24-25 and dependence for daily provision, which is like manna from heaven.
4. KATHRYN KAYE Mountain Laurel (3:44)
From her album HEAVY AS A FEATHER
Kathryn Kaye piano
Selection Overland Mountain Music (BMI)
P 2011 Kathryn Kaye
“The simple melody in this song first came to me many years ago while I was living in Kentucky.
At Imaginary Road studio, on the last day of recording Heavy as a Feather, the song blossomed (much like the Mountain Laurel) into its current form.
It’s now one of my favorite compositions.”
5. RUDY PERRONE The Prophet (2:13)
From his album THE LANGUAGE OF SPIRITS
Rudy Perrone guitar, Michael Manring fretless bass
P 2007 Rudy Perrone (BMI)
6. FIONA JOY HAWKINS
Feeling Sunshine (2:23)
From her album BLUE DREAM
Fiona Joy Hawkins piano, Michael Jackson
didgebone, Will Ackerman electric guitar, T-Bone Wolk bass, Derrik Jordan percussion
Published Larrikin Music Pty Ltd
P 2008 Fiona Joy Hawkins
7. JEFF OSTER Serengeti (4:14)
From his album TRUE
Jeff Oster flugelhorn, synthesizer & loop
programming, Keith Carlock drums, T Bone Wolk bass, Philip Aaberg synthesizers, Samite vocals.
P 2008 Retso Music (ASCAP)
There are places in the world where things still run wild and free. I hope you can feel the soul of the Serengeti in this music.
8. DEAN BOLAND Intimacy (Into Me See) (2:26)
From his album SOUL WHISPERS
Dean Boland piano, Jill Haley English horn
P 2011 bolandmusic
Intimacy is allowing others to see our true selves…into me see.
9. FRANK SMITH Porch with a View (3:06)
From his album GARDENS OF HOPE
Frank Smith guitar, Eugene Friesen cello,
Jill Haley English horn, T Bone Wolk bass
Open Tunes Music (BMI)
P 2007 Frank Smith
I write instrumental songs that tell stories which allow my listeners to feel my music through their own emotions and experiences.
This piece was written while sitting on my porch with Mt. Washington in front of me, showing off it’s new blanket of Fall snow. It was magical.
10. TODD BOSTON The Brightest Night (4:20)
From his album TOUCHED BY THE SUN
Todd Boston guitar, Charlie Bisharat violin
Eugene Friesen cello, Jeff Haynes percussion
Aaron Sterling drums
P 2012 Todd Boston (ASCAP)
Thanks to Will Ackerman and the musicians
who contributed to this track and played
with their pure heart and soul !
11. ROCKY FRETZ Kim’s Song (4:15)
From his album THE PATH AHEAD…AND STEPS THEN TAKEN
Rocky Fretz piano
P 2009 Rocky Fretz
In honor of and inspired by my one true love..Kimberly.
12. SHAMBHU Hide and Seek (3:33)
From his album SACRED LOVE
Shambhu Guitar, Claytoven Richardson Lead Vocal,Tony Levin Bass, Jeff Haynes Percussion, Michael Denten Background Vocal
P 2011 Shambhu Ltd. (BMI)
As paths converge, the lover and beloved merge, the struggle falls away, and Light shines and emerges anew.
We prepare, each of us, for the unexpectedness of the vast, all-encompassing journey to liberation or happiness.
13. KORI LINAE CAROTHERS Carpe Diem (3:53)
From her album TRILLIUM
Kori Linae Carothers synthesizer/programming,
Vocals performed, arranged and produced by Aeone ,David Cullen guitar, Will Ackerman guitar,
Jeff Haynes percussion, Jim McCarty drums,
Jeff Silverman bass, sound design and production.
Selection iRoknNod Records (BMI)
P 2009 Kori Linae Carothers
I like a new day to seize the moments in life. This song inspires: To take those moments and Live!
14. PETER JENNISON Anthem (2:34)
From his album LONGING FOR HOME (SONGS FROM WAR)
Peter Jennison piano, Jeff Haynes percussion
P 2010 Peter Jennison
Music can bring peace to our world…it’s up to
us to listen...Thank you everyone, near and far.
Peter Jennison Music at Facebook.com
15. DENISE YOUNG Livia’s Song (3:13)
From her album SOMETHING YOU DREAM OF
Denise Young piano
Selection Dancing Horses Music (BMI)
P 2006 Denise Young
Livia’s Song is dedicated to a cherished friend, and her song seemed to be a gift from the heavens, just before she left this world.
16. DEVIN RICE & ERIN AAS Thyn Ayre (3:01)
From their album ARRIVAL
Devin Rice guitar and bass, Erin Aas guitar
P 2010 Devin Rice /Erin Aas (BMI)
17. LAWRENCE BLATT The Color of Sunshine (3:40) edited version
From his album THE COLOR OF SUNSHINE
Lawrence Blatt guitar Hopi drum & piano,
Jeff Oster flugelhorn, T Bone Wolk bass,
Derrik Jordan percussion, Will Ackerman guitar
P 2009 LMB Music
18. RONNDA CADLE Shalom (3:08)
From her album WILL’S EMBRACE
Ronnda Cadle guitar, Monica Pasqual piano,
Edo Castro fretless bass, Denny Fongheiser
percussion, Jeff Haynes percussion, Noah Wilding vocals, Jeff Oster flugelhorn, Betsy Tinney cello
P 2012 RiNCE Music Publishing (ASCAP)
I wrote this for my favorite soundman after he’d survived a heart attack; wishing him peace in a time of uncertainty.
“Shalom” is his given name which in Hebrew means “peace.”
19. ANN SWEETEN Dawn on Red Mountain (3:36) edited version
From her album GREY SKY AND BITTERSWEET
Ann Sweeten piano, Jeff Oster flugelhorn,
Noah Wilding vocals
P 2007 Orange Band Records (ASCAP)
20. KEN VERHEECKE Forever (2:55)
From his album DRIFTING INTO THE SUBLIME
Ken Verheecke guitar
P 2012 Ken Verheecke
Late one evening, staring through a rustic cabin window in the Big Horn Mountains... the weight of time sat heavily upon my heart.
Time is temporal... but the gift of friendship can last forever.
21. PATRICK GORMAN Shades of You (3:03)
From his album CHASING TORNADOES
Patrick Gorman piano
P 2009 Movements in Glass Music (BMI)
May this music find you well. It is an honor to
share with you.
22. WILL ACKERMAN The Wheel (3:04)
From his album NEW ENGLAND ROADS
Will Ackerman guitar, Charlie Bisharat violin,
Tony Levin bass, Jeff Haynes percussion,
Noah Wilding vocals
Selection p Imaginary Road Music (BMI)
P 2010 William Ackerman
I will never forget Charlie nailing his violin part in take one without having even heard the song !!!
Thanks also to Tony, Jeff and Noah.
1 MASAKO Glastenbury, Vermont 3:22
2 PAUL JENSEN Taoist Winds 2:41
3 STANTON LANIER Bread of Angels 4:00
4 KATHRYN KAYE Mountain Laurel 3:44
5 RUDY PERRONE The Prophet 2:13
6 FIONA JOY HAWKINS Feeling Sunshine 2:23
7 JEFF OSTER Serengeti 4:14
8 DEAN BOLAND Intimacy 2:26
9 FRANK SMITH Porch with a View 3:06
10 TODD BOSTON The Brightest Night 4:20
11 ROCKY FRETZ Kim’s Song 4:15
12 SHAMBHU Hide and Seek 3:33
13 KORI LINAE CAROTHERS Carpe Diem 3:53
14 PETER JENNISON Anthem 2:34
15 DENISE YOUNG Livia’s Song 3:13
16 DEVIN RICE & ERIN AAS Thyn Ayre 3:01
17 LAWRENCE BLATT The Color of Sunshine 3:40
18 RONNDA CADLE Shalom 3:08
19 ANN SWEETEN Dawn on Red Mountain 3:36
20 KEN VERHEECKE Forever 2:55
21 PATRICK GORMAN Shades of You 3:03
22 WILL ACKERMAN The Wheel 3:04
All music produced by Will Ackerman, except: Glastenbury, Vermont produced by Will Ackerman, Tom Eaton and Masako;
The Brightest Night, produced by Will Ackerman, Todd Boston and Tom Eaton; Shalom, produced by Will Ackerman, co-produced
by Corin Nelsen and Ronnda Cadle; Forever, produced by Will Ackerman, Tom Eaton and Ken Verheecke; and The Wheel,
produced by Will Ackerman and Corin Nelsen.
All of the basic tracking and all but a handful of overdubs were recorded at Will Ackerman’s Imaginary Road Studios in Windham County, Vermont. (www.imaginaryroadstudios.com)
THE GATHERING was edited and mastered by Tom Eaton for Imaginary Road Studios.
Photography by Ken Verheecke (www.ktvphotography.com)
Design/Layout by Cynthia Reed (www.cynthiareedartist.com)
© and P 2012 West River Records
Visit us at http://www.WestRiverRecords.com and http://www.facebook.com/TheGatheringCD
A magnificent musical mansion
Listening to “The Gathering” is akin to entering a magnificent musical mansion of contemporary expression and taking in the amazing textures of exquisite composition of light and color in every room and corridor. “The Gathering” is a handpicked collection of songs from 22 artists recently produced by Grammy winning guitarist and founder of Windham Hill Records, Will Ackerman at his Imaginary Road Studios in Vermont. The twenty-two tracks are united by the extraordinary vision of the wizard behind the curtain, whose magic is clearly audible for all to hear. The joyful discovery of the majestic nuances of sound and interplay abound, whether solo, duet or ensemble, all created by this colorful stable of brilliantly expressive artists. Piano and guitar dominate, but the addition of cello, violin, flugelhorn, bass, voice, and percussion add a multi-hued palette of elegance to the flow. What they each have in common is a distinct gift to share, and an uncommon depth of feeling, all brought to light by the sheer genius of Ackerman’s Midas touch. Will’s influence on modern instrumental music reaches far beyond his own distinguished career as a superb guitarist and composer. While at the helm of Windham Hill, he played a key role in launching the careers of groundbreaking artists including Michael Hedges, Alex de Grassi, Liz Story, Michael Manring, Shadowfax and George Winston.
The depth and breadth of the music on The Gathering is astounding, as is the emotional range it evokes. While the variety of the music is impressive, Ackerman managed to select tracks which present a cohesive musical vision. Nothing here moves too quickly or lingers too long. If you have made the acquaintance of any of the Imaginary Road-recorded works (Todd Boston, Shambhu, Jeff Oster, Masako, Stanton Lanier, Paul Jensen et al), you know that Ackerman employs a group of stellar guest players including such luminaries as cellist Eugene Friesen, violinist Charlie Bisharat, vocalist Noah Wilding, bassist Manring, and English horn player Jill Haley, among many others. “The Gathering” draws to a poetically compelling conclusion with a lovely composition entitled “The Wheel” by none other than the maestro Ackerman himself, accompanied by violin, voice, drums, and bass. Will’s acoustic guitar playing is stunning in its tone, articulation, phrasing, and the way it sets the stage for the cream of the crop of his studio musicians to shine. This is surely one of the best compilations in the 30+ year history of this genre. And the price is right, especially considering the amount of music it contains. Ackerman stated that increased exposure for the artists is more important than profit, and I know you can resonate with that. A new generation of musicians produced by Will Ackerman ... this is dream material, on every level.
by Lloyd Barde, Music Editor, Common Ground Magazine
The RajMan Review
This 22-track collection comprises various previously released album cuts by 21 independent musicians produced over the last five years by Will Ackerman, with the final song provided by the Grammy Award-winning guitarist and Windham Hill Records founder himself.
The CD strikes a nice balance between piano-based compositions and guitar-centric tunes, with the one exception being a number from ubiquitous trumpeter Jeff Oster. Although the artists are independent, they are every bit as creatively brilliant and technically accomplished as their major-label counterparts. In fact, this album sounds just like a Windham Hill Records sampler. These musicians deserve to be represented by major labels, if it weren’t for the fact that major labels aren’t as interested in new age and contemporary instrumental music these days.
While this is basically a various-artists compilation, it is not a typically haphazard collection of discordant styles and idiosyncrasies. Ackerman has done a fantastic job of culling different songs that, although composed and performed by musicians each of whom have a unique and distinct voice, are of one accord musically, resulting in a gentle and tranquil soundtrack that’s perfect for road trips both real and imaginary.
"The Gathering" is a stunning sampler and collection of twenty-two tracks from as many artists whose music was produced by Will Ackerman in the past six years at his Imaginary Road Studios in Vermont. The legendary and multiple-award-winning founder of Windham Hill Records, Ackerman has continued to add his magic touch to dozens of recordings since selling Windham Hill to BMG in 1992. As a reviewer, any music that comes in with Ackerman’s name in the production credits promises to be exceptional - and I can’t think of any examples of when this wasn’t true. Most of the twenty-two tracks are either mainly piano or mainly guitar, backed by a stellar group of mostly acoustic musicians. The playing order is perfect, which is an amazing feat in itself with such a big group of artists. It is obviously a compilation album, but it flows so seamlessly that there are no jarring changes from one piece to the next, providing well over an hour of music heaven. Unless you are a reviewer, the chances are small that you’ve heard very many of these artists, so this is a fantastic opportunity to hear a sampling of some of the best music that this genre has had to offer in the past several years. "The Gathering" is certain to be one of my favorite albums of 2012. I give it my highest recommendation.
A "gathering" of fantastic talent all on one album
If one could perform the aural equivalent of a blind taste test on an astute listener of the compilation CD The Gathering, that person might guess that the album is a "newly discovered" collection of tracks from the archives of the pioneering instrumental label Windham Hill. If that same listener was informed that the tracks were selected and sequenced by none other than Will Ackerman himself (founder of Windham Hill in 1976), that same listener would probably exclaim "See! I told you so." However, that listener would be wrong. These are all tracks from independent artists, each of whom are recording and releasing on their own label. The album's uniting factor is that the estimable (I am tempted to call him "legendary" although that might imply he is either dead or retired) Ackerman produced or co-produced each song.
However, one could conceivably make a solid case for the assertion that the 22 (!!!) tracks on The Gathering could have come from the vaults of Windham Hill. Each of the artists' songs (lifted from their respective albums) exemplifies the best qualities of that ground-breaking label– the elegant simplicity of relatively sparse acoustic instrumentation played in a thoroughly unostentatious manner, filled with honest sincerity, an uncommon depth of feeling, and an abundance of technical talent. Not only did Ackerman produce/co-produce all the albums that these songs were culled from, but in addition, nearly all of the tracks were recorded at his Imaginary Road studio (in the mountains of Vermont). Perhaps one would not be remiss in stating that The Gathering is, in fact, a Windham Hill compilation minus being on the label, that is.
Having reviewed many of the albums featured on this amazing collection (and it is amazing when one listens to it all the way through), I recognized many of the songs on the first playing, while a few others were brand new to me. However, no matter how many of these artists' CDs you may currently own, I urge you to still consider adding this to your collection (hey, I'll bet you own at least one of the Windham Hill collections, don't you?). However, since these artists do not, in fact, share a label, it seems highly unlikely that you own more than half (if that) of these artists' albums. And, in that case, you really have no reason whatsoever to not purchase this puppy pronto (provided you enjoy excellent acoustic instrumental music, that is).
The sheer variety of the music on The Gathering is impressive, yet Ackerman still managed to select tracks which present a cohesive musical vision. Nothing here races too fast and nothing here moves too slow. While piano and guitar dominate the pieces as lead instruments (plus a song by flugelhorn player Jeff Oster, that being the funky "Serengeti"), the assorted accompanists who are sprinkled throughout the cuts more than compensates for the two-pronged approach. If you have made the acquaintance of any of the Imaginary Road-recorded works, you know that Ackerman works with a group of stellar guest stars whom I refer to as "the usual suspects" including such luminaries as cellist Eugene Friesen, vocalist Noah Wilding, bassist Michael Manring, and English horn player Jill Haley, among many others.
With so many tracks on the CD, singling any of them out, except as personal favorites, would require a two-part review. However, I will mention a few songs merely so that you, dear reader, can gauge the depth of musical magic that awaits you herein: "Taoist Winds" from guitarist Paul Jensen features his adroit fingerstyle picking matched by evocative cello, pianist Kathryn Kaye's "Mountain Laurel" exudes a flowing sensation of warm nostalgia colored with a shading of melancholy, the appropriately titled "Feeling Sunshine" from down-under pianist Fiona Joy Hawkins is a jaunty tune on which her lead is counterpointed by buzzing didgeridoo plus an undercurrent of midtempo percussion, "Porch With a View" features the superlative talents of guitarist Frank Smith (joined by cello) in a sublime, soft, yet sad ballad, the guitar and vocal combination on Shambhu's "Hide and Seek" evokes a tropical island feel, somewhat akin to the many fine works of Bruce BecVar, pianist Denise Young paints a sepia-toned minimalist portrait on the forlorn "Livia's Song," Ann Sweeten's characteristic flowing melodicism can be distinctly heard on the peaceful "Dawn on Red Mountain," and Ken Verheecke plays his acoustic guitar sans accompaniment on the impressionistic "Forever." Ackerman himself, accompanied by strings, drums, and bass, closes out the album with "The Wheel," a moderately energetic conclusion to all the great music which has preceded it.
The Gathering may be–no, is, the perfect gift for any acoustic instrumental music lover. I'd find it hard to believe that anyone will recognize every single artist here and it’s equally unlikely she/he will own more than a handful of the original recordings. However, the selection of specific tracks and their sequencing is so spot on that prior ownership is irrelevant. I have been sent the majority of these artists' works for review and I still found myself hitting the PLAY button each time when The Gathering ended–I simply couldn’t get enough of this music. Major kudos to Ackerman (and mastering engineer Tom Eaton) and, of course, all the talented artists (and their many accompanists) who grace this album, which is surely one of the best compilations in the 30+ year history of this genre. One last point–the CD is very affordable, especially considering the amount of music it contains. Ackerman stated that increased exposure for the artists is more important than profit, and I know you can resonate with that.
Bill Binkelman - Zone Music Reporter
Best Instrumental Song Collection 2012
Best Instrumental Songs Review: The Gathering by Will Ackerman.
When deciding on a review title for Will Ackerman’s collection of contemporary instrumental songs, the first caption that came to mind involved the word best. There are several reasons why I gave The Gathering a desirable best instrumental song collection title, and I am prepared to give the reasons why. Synonymous with quality music, the name Will Ackerman alone seems to shout excellence! This is apparent, whether it is his own music recording, or one of the 20 plus gold and platinum albums he produced throughout his 35 year professional career.
The Gathering is the newest 2012 instrumental music compilation album from the acclaimed, GRAMMY® Award winning guitarist and producer Will Ackerman. Featuring an exclusive music collection of 22 top-quality songs by 22 great artists, The Gathering is a decisive who’s who of the best quality artists Will Ackerman selected for this release, out of the many fine musicians who had their album produced at his state-of-the-art Imaginary Road Studios.
Will Ackerman is famous worldwide for his production talents as founder Windham Hill Records, and his strong influence in the instrumental music recording industry yesteryear and today. In addition to his role as producer, Will Ackerman is an award-winning composer and guitarist, having performed a vital role in launching the careers of many award-winning artists. Over the past 35 years Will Ackerman has produced albums for over eighty four artists. Some of the most notable artists are Alex de Grassi, Michael Hedges, Michael Manring, Shadowfax, Liz Story and George Winston.
The Gathering by Will Ackerman is an excellent compilation album with 22 of the best contemporary instrumental songs on Will Ackerman’s West River Records label. Famous for founding Windham Hill Records, the legacy of the highest quality artists endures on Will Ackerman’s West River Records label.
The Imaginary Road Studio today engages the expertise of producer and engineer Tom Eaton. Taking the high road in quality studio productions, William Ackerman and Tom Eaton’s expertize help artists embolden their
music compositions with grace, elegance and imagination.
Listed below are the 22 artists and 22 song credits for The Gathering 2012 compilation release at CDBaby.com.
The Gathering Credits – 22 Artists and 22 songs:
1. Ann Sweeten song Dawn on Red Mountain, from Grey Sky And Bittersweet album.
2. Devin Rice & Erin Aas song Thyn Ayre, from The Arrival album.
3. Fiona Joy Hawkins song Feeling Sunshine, from Live At The Q album.
4. Jeff Oster song Serengeti, from Surrender album.
5. Kathryn Kaye song Mountain Laurel, from Heavy as a Feather album.
6. Kori Linae Carothers song Carpe Diem, from Trillium album.
7. Lawrence Blatt song The Color of Sunshine, from The Color of Sunshine album.
8. Masako song Glastenbury, Vermont, from Masako album.
9. Paul Jensen song Taoist Winds, from The Other Side album.
10. Peter Jennison song Anthem, from Longing From Home album.
11. Shambhu song Hide and Seek, from Sacred Love album.
12. Todd Boston song The Brightest Night, from Touched by the Sun album.
13. Will Ackerman song The Wheel, from New England Roads album.
14. Dean Boland song Intimacy, from Soul Whispers album.
15. Denise Young song Livia’s Song, from Something You Dream Of album.
16. Frank Smith song Porch with a View, from Earth Spring album.
17. Ken Verheecke song Forever, from A Place Called Home album.
18. Patrick Gorman song Shades of You, from Chasing Tornados album.
19. Rhonnda Cadle song Shalom, from Will’s Embrace album.
20. Rocky Fretz song Kim’s Song, from The Path Ahead album.
21. Rudy Perrone song The Prophet, from The Language Of Spirits album.
22. Stanton Lanier song Bread of Angels, from A Thousand Years album.