Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick | Waterfallin'

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United States - Hawaii

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Easy Listening: Mood Music New Age: Healing Moods: Type: Instrumental
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by Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick

1st ever CD to feature the Chapman 10 string Alto Stick in a blend of contemporary, Spanish and classical influences.
Genre: Easy Listening: Mood Music
Release Date: 

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1. Waterfallin' Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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2. Butterfly Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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3. California Dreamin' Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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4. Parisian Bistro Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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5. Fragile Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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6. Tradewinds l Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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7. Nights In White Satin Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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8. Spanish Serenade Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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9. Sands of the Sahara Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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10. C'est La Vie Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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11. Renaissance Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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12. Summertime Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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13. Granada Rose Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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14. Tradewinds ll Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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15. Baby Elephant Walk Michael Kollwitz & Chapman Stick
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Album Notes
Waterfallin' is the first-ever CD to prominently feature the new Chapman 10 string Alto Stick®! Over the years Emmett Chapman (inventor of The Stick) has introduced many different models and improvements of his amazing instruments- the original 10 string Stick in 1974, the 12 string Grand Stick in 1991 and the new Alto Stick in 2004. The Alto is about 10 inches shorter than Emmett's other models and the notes are in a much higher register (guitar & violin range) than the other models. The beautiful, pure tone of the new Alto can be heard on 11 of Waterfallin's 15 tracks. Many of the songs were inspired by a trip to the island of Kaua'i and they will whisk you away to a peaceful place where the warm and balmy tradewinds are blowing...

Ever wanted to REALLY see someone play the absolute heck out of The Chapman Stick? Look no further! Get Michael's new DVD (right here on CDBaby) and experience a 20 song, 80 minute live concert that Michael gave in 2006 before a live audience and three digital cameras. Consider this: 90% of the population has never even heard about this amazing American instrument- let alone having seen a true master perform on it. Now you can have this great experience right on your TV screen anytime! Bass, chords, melodies and leads all at once. Hey-is that popcorn I smell in the microwave?

Michael Kollwitz has been performing on The Chapman Stick® * since 1976 and was one of inventor Emmett Chapman’s first music students. He studied with Chapman for 10 years and is considered one of the world’s top players of this new American instrument.

Michael began playing the revolutionary stringed instrument after witnessing a live performance given by Chapman at a college coffee house in the 70's. In the 80's-after years of practice and study- he began his performance career. Since that time, he has performed extensively throughout California, Nevada, Arizona and Hawaii. He has given over a thousand performances at every type of venue.

He has been an opening act for The Beach Boys, The Goo Goo Dolls and was offered full-time work as a musician at Disneyland. He has an extensive client list that includes everything from Fortune 500 companies to civic organizations. He's performed at festivals, fairs, upscale resorts, fine dining establishments, weddings and many other venues. (You can view 65+ reference letters from happy past clients at: http://www.michaelkollwitz.com/?page_id=156

Michael has also been- and continues to be- featured on numerous TV and radio stations in the Western US and nationwide, including “All Things Considered” on PBS. He’s been featured in many newspapers, magazines and other media. His music was included in the very first CD compilation of ‘Stick’ music and his photo can be found in the first edition ‘Stick’ instruction book, “Free Hands”. In May 2007, CurrentTV purchased the rights to one of his videos for national broadcast. NPR’s popular nationally broadcast show, “Morning Edition”, began featuring tracks from his recent releases in the summer of 2008- delighting listeners in hundreds of markets across the country. His DVD "Live In Concert" is aired frequently by Akaku TV on the island of Maui.

One of the most prolific Chapman Stick musical artists, Kollwitz has had twelve (12) independent releases: 9 audio CDs, a “Live In Concert” DVD (10/06) and 2 digital download albums- one of which was the world’s very first digital download album of Chapman Stick music. They are currently offered on more than 30 different premium digital music sites. "Under The Banyan Tree" (01/09) is his most recent audio CD release. Recorded 'live' under the famous banyan tree in Old Lahaina Town on Maui, it also features master flutist Lance Israel on wooden flutes from around the world. Prior to that, his CD “Hawaiian Paradise” (08/08) was created entirely on Maui with a distinct Hawaiian flair- including four tracks in duo with pedal steel guitar. “Waterfallin’” (05/06) was the first-ever CD to prominently feature the new higher-range Alto Stick® developed by Chapman in 2005. His other releases are: “Steppin’ Out” (01/00), “Moments” (03/03), “Carnival” (12/03), “Memories” (05/04), “Frosty The Stickman” (12/04) and “Here Comes Spring” (05/05). His digital download albums are “20 Greatest Hits” (10/06) and “Greatest Hits- Vol.2" (02/08).

Although he has an extensive repertoire, his music has been described as a relaxing blend of jazz and blues with a Hawaiian flair. The Stick has a very unique, pleasant tone that tends to relax listeners almost immediately. The sweet, soothing tones of the instrument are said to simply melt away the stress of the day. He resides in Lahaina on the island of Maui and performs at some of Maui’s most prestigious events and resorts.

* The Chapman Stick® is easily the most radical innovation in stringed instruments since the invention of the electric guitar. The Stick is played with both hands; simultaneously playing BOTH bass and melody parts independently- by tapping and holding strings to frets (rather than by plucking, picking or strumming). The essence of guitar, bass, keyboards and drums- all from a single instrument! In the hands of a seasoned, master player, The Chapman Stick can sound like 2 or 3 musicians at once.

For more info on Michael and The Chapman Stick, please visit:



to write a review


The colors he creates are warm, vibrant and all encompassing
Michael’s expertise on this instrument is absolutely amazing! The feelings and colors he creates are warm, vibrant and all encompassing. I have all his CDs and in my opinion this is the best one so far. This CD includes some very beautiful and technically interesting original compositions. His fingers seem to fly over the strings at times with this wonderful melodic expression of music. There is also a tasty selection of tunes written by others but interpreted as only Michael can. What can I say but Thank You Michael for your gift of this wonderful album.

Wilma/Alex A.

It's amazing, a must hear album
I purchased this CD for my husband and he absolutley loves it. He has been listening to it non-stop since it arrived. It's a superb album and I am definitley interested in purchasing another album by Michael Kollwitz.


Love it, love it, love it!
A wonderfully calming, soothing CD that I use in my third grade classroom. The children love it while they are working and unbeknownst to them I'm hearing some fav. classic rock songs in a new way: California Dreamin' and Nights in White Satin are fantastic!


Alto nova
Kollwitz's tasty use of the Alto stick parallels the use of the 'Ukulele in island music and the higher register rings true. A unique instrument tastefully utilized throughout the album.

Jim Reilly- StickNews monthly digest

It’s hard to find any faults with this disc...
Jim Reilly
Calgary, Alberta
Oct. 30, 06
Michael Kollwitz “ Waterfallin’
It used to be, that if you wanted to show someone what a Stick sounded like, all you had to do was put on one of Michael Kollwitz’s CDs. There is no finer example than Michael’s of the left hand-chord, right hand-melody Stick technique. Now, you can play his latest release, Waterfallin’, for anyone who asks what the new Alto Stick sounds like. Waterfallin’ is the first full-length recording to feature the Alto Stick, and it’s fitting that Michael is the first artist to bring the Alto to the fore. You see, he has been there, playing Stick, since just about the beginning. He started in 1976, and was one of Emmett’s first students. His updated Website www.michaelkollwitz.com is like a trip through Stick history. Check out some of the photos in particular.

Those of you familiar with Michael’s previous releases will recognize left hand arpeggios and the clear, clean Grand Stick with MIDI sweeteners on the melody side. That’s present on Waterfallin’ too, but on top of that, Michael has added the crisp, bright Alto. The Alto cuts through the mix and adds any upper register shimmer to eleven of the disc’s fifteen tracks.

The Grand with MIDI and the Alto Stick are perfect compliments to each other. On the first tune, appropriately titled ˜Waterfallin’ a cascade of notes fall from the Alto over a bed of Grand chords, arpeggios and subtle counter melodies. My personal favourite is Michael’s version of Sting’s “Fragile”. Here the range of the Alto seems to match Sting’s tenor seamlessly. Michael also covers, “California Dreamin”, “Nights in White Satin” “C’est La Vie” “Summertime” and “Baby Elephant Walk”. The other nine tunes are originals. All stay true to his sonic formula: lay down a solid foundation, then sweeten it with a strong melody on top.

It’s hard to find any faults with this disc. I’ve written before, how Michael’s music is a wonderful to just put on, sit back and relax too. My favourite thing to do with his music is to put on headphones and use it as live soundtrack while I go walking. He always manages to stimulate and sooth simultaneously.

Waterfallin’ is an important addition to any Stick library. Not only because it marks the introduction of the Alto Stick, but also because it makes a fine musical statement that rises above both the Grand and Alto instruments.

Jeffrey Leep

An Absolutely Outstanding Musician
This review is for Michael K as a musician, rather than for a specific album. I am a musician/bandleaer/booking agent myself, and I have known and played with Michael for over 15 years. He is a wonderful talent who plays with an open heart. You can feel his presence when listening to his music, and now that he is living in Hawaii, the beauty and heart come out even more. His musicianship is first class, and when listening to any of his tracks, you know that you are in the presence of someone very special. I highly recommend any of his albums or live performances, and that he plays the Chapman Stick is even more amazing!