Doug Hammer | Travels

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Travels

by Doug Hammer

Travels (double CD), Doug Hammer’s follow-up to Solace, includes 39 new original songs from meditative to melodic. Personal and intimate, it tells a story of past, present, and future, of places seen and places only in dreams.
Genre: New Age: Solo Instrumental
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1. Travels
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3:40 $0.99
2. The Turn of Time
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4:01 $0.99
3. Country Road
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3:48 $0.99
4. Maine Morning
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5:04 $0.99
5. Days of Summer
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4:29 $0.99
6. Pendulum
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4:22 $0.99
7. Reflections of a Distant Past
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5:39 $0.99
8. Can't Go Back
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3:47 $0.99
9. Moving
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3:42 $0.99
10. City of Dreams
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3:25 $0.99
11. Outbound Train
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5:10 $0.99
12. The Castle
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3:45 $0.99
13. Lost City
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3:18 $0.99
14. Here With You
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4:18 $0.99
15. After the Storm
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2:48 $0.99
16. Whirling Dervish
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5:19 $0.99
17. Jonathan's Song
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4:14 $0.99
18. The Brightness of Days
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4:51 $0.99
19. Travels (Epilogue)
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2:10 $0.99
20. Moving On
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3:39 $0.99
21. Back In Your Arms
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4:03 $0.99
22. The Place We Once Knew
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3:09 $0.99
23. Glory Days
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3:21 $0.99
24. Have Faith
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2:19 $0.99
25. Old Piano
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1:21 $0.99
26. Ragtime Blues
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2:50 $0.99
27. Jekyll and Hyde
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3:20 $0.99
28. Frozen Night
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3:42 $0.99
29. Here At Last
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3:02 $0.99
30. My Heart Belongs to You
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3:21 $0.99
31. My Precious One
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4:38 $0.99
32. Thinking of You
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3:39 $0.99
33. Going Home
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2:22 $0.99
34. It'll Be Alright
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4:30 $0.99
35. Stillness
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4:32 $0.99
36. I Am With You
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2:16 $0.99
37. Remembrance
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3:56 $0.99
38. Marching On
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39. In Memory
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3:35 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Travels, Doug Hammer’s follow-up to Solace, includes 39 new original songs from meditative to melodic. Personal and intimate, it tells a story of past, present, and future, of places seen and places only in dreams.

Disc 1 is Travels, a collection of 19 handcrafted songs.
Disc 2 is Travels: Detour, 20 songs created during the making of Travels.
It continues the story, goes to some unexpected places, but finally comes back home.

Life, love, loss. Moments, journeys and the brightness of days.


Reviews


to write a review

Amethyste

A roller coaster emotional journey
Is it Christmas already? It feels like it is, because Doug Hammer has just spoiled us not only with a new release, but TWO!!! Double the pleasure, double the fun, double the tears, double the time I spent in my own mind putting Doug Hammer's music to what I have lived in my life. The tile "Travels" really is the perfect word for this Album. It does bring you on a wonderful excursion of feelings, life happenings and leave you with a sentiment of hope for another tomorrow filled with excitement and wonders. Doug's playing is beyond worldly. I cannot describe in words what it is, but it is from a divine world that I have been able to experience by listening to his beautiful creations. This CD is a MUST have for anyone who wants to experience what it is to "fly free". Doug Hammer's "Travels" takes you on a wonderful journey. Trust me, I know you'll be glad you did!!

Gunnar Spardel

Travels: A Musical Journey Through Life
After 4 long years, Doug finally presents his brandnew double album "Travels" that is extraordinary in many ways.
Travels sure is a cinematic, musical mind movie full of pure experience, feelings and emotion, that have stunned me by their perfection. Right after the first song started playing I saw memories of my own life in front of me (growing up, falling in love, dealing with hardships, etc). I don't know a whole lot of artists that can do something like this. Doug's music goes straight to your heart and touches you deeply.

My favorites so far are: Outbound Train, Maine Morning, In Memory and the gorgeous title track "Travels".

The tip-toe between a perfect production (crystal clear piano sound) and emotional, heartfelt music is put into scene ideally - and very successfully! The beautiful and unique CD package with added texts by Doug, complete the picture of a wonderful, timeless production. Let's hope that we don't have to wait too long to see what Doug will do next.

Donovan Johnson

From Enlightened Piano Radio
Doug Hammer
Travels
2011

Ah, Doug Hammer's "Travels." This album is a true gem! And one of the brightest of them for that matter.

From the moment this two disk set arrived in the mail, I've been captivated by it. "Travels" has a way of doing that. Just looking at the album artwork is enough to draw you in. A pleasant shade of green, a weathered wooden floor and an old, used up piano intrigue the eyes. Then, you ask the questions. Travels. What kinds of travels? What is the inspiration for this work? That piano on the front cover--where has it been? What kinds of musical travels am I about to take as I listen?

Then you turn the disk over and read the song titles. "The Turn Of Time." "Country Road." "Maine Morning." "Days Of Summer." The list continues with titles that reach out to you, demanding your attention. "Reflections Of A Distant Past." "Can't Go Back." "Here With You," "The Place We Once Knew." These songs are instrumental stories, and one can tell just by reading the list of titles.

Then you do listen. And listen, and listen, and listen. Each piece is uniquely different and has it's own flavor, yet each piece is also familiar enough to be a part of the collection. Doug Hammer definitely has his own signature sound, but "Travels" as a work has a signature sound all it's own as well. You'll hear jazz influence, along with ragtime and gospel, all worked into refreshing contemporary arrangements. On the whole, the album is very warm and inviting. The places Doug takes you are places where we've all been. These are places in the world, in the mind, and in your own backyard. The familiarity that Doug is a master at creating within his songs is welcoming, encouraging, inspiring. "Travels" has a way of making you believe you've never been without this album, that somehow it's always been there in your collection. I'm sure that's because the thoughts and the moods that Doug is able to convey here have always been in your mind and in your Spirit.

I would strongly recommend this album to anyone. Period. I'd especially like to recommend it to anyone who may have some misconceptions about what fresh, original New Age piano music really is. I have no doubt that one listening, with an open mind, may change your opinion of this genre. As for the rest of us, get ready for something that will take your New Age piano listening experience to another level completely.

"Travels" is a true work of art. A creative masterpiece. And after spending a decent amount of time with it, I can say that I'd feel musically incomplete if I'd never listened to this work. Doug, bravo.

Donovan Johnson is an internationally recognized New Age pianist, and the owner and operator of "Enlightened Piano Radio," an online New Age piano radio staion. Visit his website at www.donovanjohnson.net, or the radio staion at www.enlightenedpiano.com

REVIEWS NEW AGE

Un piano muy variado, lleno de vida, melancólico, romántico, incluso triste
Hacía tiempo que no sabíamos nada del pianista Doug Hammer y ahora, cuatro años después vuelve, y nos sorprende con un doble trabajo que atrapará a los oyentes por su variedad de estilos, técnica y calidad en todos los sentidos. Travels es un doble-CD presentado en formato Digipack, con un diseño fantástico y rodeado de casi cuarenta pequeñas historias personales; un primer CD que describe lugares y paisajes que un día cautivaron al pianista y un segundo CD que contiene veinte piezas totalmente improvisadas. Durante años, Hammer se encontraba saltando de composición a improvisación continuamente y el resultado fue Travels. En Travels se pueden encontrar melodías aptas para cualquier momento, idóneas para cualquier estado de ánimo.. rozando géneros como el Jazz o el clásico, Doug tiene como objetivo no dejar indiferente al público, de ahí la gran variedad de sentimientos y estilos que se pueden encontrar en este elaborado álbum.

Doug Hammer nos regala más de dos horas de asombroso piano. En Travels podemos disfrutar de un piano muy variado, lleno de vida, melancólico, romántico, incluso triste, una diversidad muy importante para tantas horas donde sólo es protagonista un instrumento. En Travels podemos elegir qué queremos escuchar dependiendo de nuestro estado de ánimo. Para vibrar y el primer CD es fantástico, para relajarse y fundirse en sueños, el segundo. Travels es un álbum muy altamente recomendado!.

reviewsnewage.com
12/11/11

Kathy Parsons

From MainlyPiano
"Travels" is an incredible two-disc solo piano release by Doug Hammer. With a total of thirty-nine original compositions, it is amazing that there is no filler on either disc. Disc 1 is a collection of nineteen “composed” pieces written over the course of several years, and Disc 2 contains twenty improvisations that were “written” and recorded in one take. Disc 2 is subtitled “Detour” because it arrived unexpectedly while working on Travels. Hammer’s album covers are always exceptional, and "Travels" features a photo of a really beat up old upright that, if it could talk, would have some fascinating stories as well. Both discs have an eclectic selection of music recorded on a Schimmel concert grand piano. Most of it is played in the beautifully-flowing style Hammer is known for, but there are also blues, gospel, jazz and classical stylings.

With thirty-nine tracks, I’ll just hit a few of them on each disc. Disc 1 begins with the title tune, an energetic piece that suggests anticipation and excitement. “The Turn of Time” is a lovely ballad that is much quieter and more relaxed. “Pendulum” has a catchy smooth jazz rhythm that suggests joyful movement. “Reflections Of a Distant Past” is quiet and introspective - almost dreamy. “City of Dreams” has a gorgeous, gentle melody that is soothing and optimistic. The magical sparkle of “The Castle” is light and lively at the beginning, becoming bigger and more majestic as it unfolds. I really love this one! “Lost City” is dark and almost mournful - I love this one, too! “After the Storm” is poignant and bittersweet - soft-spoken and lovely. “Whirling Dervish” begins slowly in the bass of the piano, gradually building energy. The melody is mysterious, giving no hint of how this piece will develop. A little before the middle, it takes on a completely new tempo, maintaining the melody, but getting faster and faster and taking on a more Middle Eastern flavor. After peaking, the original melody and tempo return and fade out - fascinating! “Jonathan’s Song” is a tender lullaby and love song. Disk 1 ends with “Travels (epilogue),” which is much quieter and more reflective than the first version. It could be subtitled “The Weary Traveler Returns” - a very fitting end to a great ride!

Disc 2 begins with “Moving On,” which has a repeated bass chord rhythm that suggests movement and a sense of urgency while the melody is more relaxed. “Back In Your Arms” expresses the warmth of a welcoming embrace - tender and loving. “The Place We Once Knew” is a wistful and nostalgic ballad that expresses deep feelings. “Have Faith” and the next few songs were a surprise - and a happy one at that! “Have Faith” is pure, soulful gospel. “Old Piano” is obviously played on a different piano - perhaps the one on the album cover! Honky-tonk fun that ends too soon. I love “Ragtime Blues” - slow and sultry with a touch of humor. Great stuff, Doug!!! “Jekyll and Hyde” begins slowly and mysteriously, becoming much bigger and more dramatic and then going back to the quieter side. The two sides alternate several times to great effect, and then it trails off at the end. “Frozen Night” returns to a softer style but conveys the chill of a very cold night - another really great piece! “My Heart Belongs to You” is a deeply emotional love song that comes from the heart - another favorite. “Going Home” expresses warmth, hope, and contentment from a special place within - just beautiful! “Stillness” soothes and relaxes with quiet tones and open spaces between the notes. “Remembrance” and “In Memory” are both gentle, thoughtful pieces for loved ones who have taken the ultimate journey.

"Travels" is excellent from start to finish. The variety in the music gives a well-rounded travelog for “life, love, loss. Moments, journeys, and the brightness of days.” This is sure to be one of my favorite albums for 2011. I give "Travels" my highest recommendation.