Rick Seaton | Ivory Angels

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Easy Listening: Background Music Classical: New Music Ensemble Moods: Mood: Christmas
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Ivory Angels

by Rick Seaton

Christmas carols; a masterful, creative, eclectic mix of new age, rock, classical and jazz. Not the same old new age "muzak." Hip, upbeat, unpredictable, addictive music.
Genre: Easy Listening: Background Music
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. What Child Is This
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3:32 $0.99
2. Angels We Have Heard On High
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3:46 $0.99
3. O Little Town Of Bethlehem
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3:40 $0.99
4. In The Bleak Midwinter
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4:30 $0.99
5. Once in Royal David's City
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4:52 $0.99
6. I Saw Three Ships
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3:02 $0.99
7. It Came Upon The Midnight Clear
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3:56 $0.99
8. Hark The Herald Angels Sing
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3:22 $0.99
9. Coventry Carol / Away In A Manger
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4:10 $0.99
10. Silent Night
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4:48 $0.99
11. Masters In This Hall
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2:48 $0.99
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes
About Rick: Rick is an accomplished pianist, organist, composer, freelance musician working and teaching in the Denver Metro area.

Rick holds a Master of Music degree in organ performance from Indiana University and a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance from the University of Denver. He has also studied piano abroad with the Royal Danish Conservatory.

Rick has been active as a church musician in the Denver area for 18 years, and is currently organist at the historic Central Presbyterian Church in Denver, Colorado.

Rick has just completed his next album "Such Dreams" which was debuted in concert on May 27, 2006 at the Newman Center for the Performing Arts, University of Denver. CD's now available.

Go to www.rickseaton.com for audio samples. Find "Such Dreams" here at CDBaby.com


Review of Ivory Angels:
Michael Woodhead of Wind and Wire - March 04 Issue
Date: 02/17/04 20:44:34
Ivory Angels: Christmas Carols Reinvented
Seaton Studios (2003)

Christmas comes early this year or, perhaps if you missed it last year, you can recall the joyous season with this marvelous collection of 'reinvented' Christmas carols.

And it doesn't have to be Christmas for anyone to enjoy this CD-the carols are so unlike the carols we normally associate with Christmas that we can delight in the music at any time of the year.

With a sprinkling of light jazz, contemporary pop, new age fusion and a very improvisational feel, Rick Seaton offers charming renditions of familiar melodies that delight, uplift and inspire on the one hand, and that make us pause for reflection on the other.

Just a few observations on some of the eleven pieces-

A sprightly version of "O Little Town of Bethlehem" stirs together fuzz guitar, piano, recorder, drums, and cymbals to yield a very contemporary version of this ages-old song.

"In the Bleak Midwinter" is a passionate piano solo that instantly draws one into a concert setting. Close your eyes and be carried away.

A carpet of synth music introduces "It came Upon a Midnight Clear" which is then carried along by piano, again, as the synth flows in and out to punctuate and enhance further verses on flute. A slight off-beat gives a new and different, but nice version.

"Hark the Herald Angels Sing" presents us with a syncopated beat that further enhances the more contemporary feel of the whole album.

Harp and angelic voices caress our ears with a lovely rendition of "Coventry Carol" and "Away in a Manger", and then the CD rounds out with a rousing, Celtic-type version of "Masters in This Hall".

As I said, the music presented here can be enjoyed year round without a Christmas-type atmosphere, and I look forward to seeing what Rick presents us on his upcoming fall 2004 album.

Rick is an accomplished pianist, organist, composer, and freelance musician working and teaching in the Denver Metro area, and is currently organist at the historic Central Presbyterian Church in downtown Denver.

Web Page: http://www.rickseaton.com
My Favourite: "O Little Town of Bethlehem"
CD Length: 42:26 minutes

New Age Music Reviewer for Wind And Wire
and Synchronicity Magazine
Woodhead & Son Creative Enterprises:

Review of Ivory Angels:
C.W. Ross - Christian Rockers Online
Date: Wed 5/6/2004 12:45 PM

With this CD Rick takes some well known and some not so well known Christmas carols and adds his own unique style of music to them. While in the broadest sense this is piano music the songs have many more layers to them.

The song arrangements are both interesting and invigorating. Some of the more well known carols you'll find on the CD are; "What Child Is This,"

"O Little Town Of Bethlehem," It Came Upon A Midnight Clear," "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing," and "Silent Night."

Well, all the songs have a more upbeat sound to them then their traditional versions do my favorite is, "O Little Town Of Bethlehem."
This version of the songs is like a melting pot of sounds that come together to form a musical treat for the ear.

This version of the song has enough tempo to get your grandpa off the couch even after a full day of drinking eggnog!

If you're looking for a new Christmas time release to add to this year's Christmas play list you should find this one to your liking.
C.W. Ross


Quote on Ivory Angels:
David Lanz - Grammy Nominated Artist
Date: Fri 3/12/2004 1:56 PM

Rick's arrangements are very creative and thoughtful. It sounds to me like Rick spent a great deal of time, energy and love in putting this holiday CD together....and I love the title:-)

David Lanz
Grammy Nominated Artist - Pianist (Narada)

Quote on Ivory Angels:
Michael Jones - Pianist (Pianoscape)
Date: Wed 4/14/2004 7:57 AM

Rick does have a wonderful imagination. My response - as you can imagine - was what more can be said about these old favorites that hasn't already been said many times before. But Rick does bring an original captivating and fresh interpretation to these old canons that captured my attention. With performances that are dynamic and bold on the one hand and tender and sensitive on the other he invites the listener to re - imagine the music of Christmas and their participation in its story of blessing in new ways.

Michael Jones

Quote on Ivory Angels:
George Winston, Pianist - Windham Hill
Date: Tues 3/30/2004 10:17 AM

Rick Seaton's CD 'Ivory Angels - Christmas Carols Reinvented' has beautiful harmonic and melodic variations on these carols - Great CD.

George Winston
Pianist with Windham Hill

Email Response to CD:
Wayne Gratz, Pianist - Narada
Wed 5/12/2004 3:07 PM

Hi Rick,

Sorry it's taken so long to get back to you about your CD. I got a chance to listen to it today and found your arrangements to be excellent>>>> very original. I also found your piano performances to superb. Sounds like you have had a lot of formal training. I especially like your arrangement of Silent Night and Midnight Clear in 5/4. Out of curiosity, what kind of piano do you record with? Anyway, best of luck with your CD.




to write a review

Kathy Parsons

Different, but not too different!
I made two incorrect assumptions when “Ivory Angels” arrived for review. From the title, I assumed that this would be an acoustic piano album, and it isn’t - all of the instrumentation is electronic and of excellent quality. The other assumption from the title was that these would be extremely different arrangements of Christmas carols - along the line of the first two Mannheim Steamroller Christmas albums or Silvard’s “Calling Upon Angels,” where the themes of the songs were there but he improvised his own versions. Rick Seaton’s arrangements are solid and have some very original interpretations, but are not radically different from the traditional tunes. Different, but not way out there. Seaton’s selection of carols is made up of non-Santa songs that are of a more sacred nature. Playing styles include mellow/new agey, gospel, smooth jazz, and most of the tracks are piano with other instruments accompanying (all performed by Seaton on keyboards).

All eleven tracks are very enjoyable, but I do have some favorites. “What Child Is This” is enchanting. Mostly a piano/guitar duet, Seaton keeps the melody clean and uncluttered, but has a complex piano part in the background that livens up the piece without taking it too far out of tradition. “O Little Town of Bethlehem” truly is a very different arrangement, and isn’t recognizable for the first 45 seconds. When the melody enters, it is jazzy and upbeat - a very joyful version that is also a lot of fun! “Once in Royal David’s City” starts out as a basic church hymn played on organ with choral voices accompanying. It then evolves into a soulful gospel piece with organ and piano that becomes an exuberant jazz trio (piano, organ, and percussion), ending with a phrase of the “Hallelujah” chorus - this one makes me smile each time I hear it. “It Came Upon the Midnight Clear” is unusual in that Seaton has changed the time signature to 5/4, giving it an edge that makes it fun to hear, but will probably throw off the sing-along folks (nothing wrong with that!). “Coventry Carol/Away In a Manger” is gorgeous. Mostly guitar and voices, the medley shimmers with simple beauty. I also really like “Masters In This Hall,” which I’ve heard before, but never knew the title. It sounds like it’s from The Renaissance, and is given appropriate treatment for that era - joyful, but in a minor key - a great way to end the album!

As I’ve mentioned many times before, I get really tired of Christmas music because I teach it so much, but I really enjoy “Ivory Angels.” If you’re in the mood for some fresh interpretations of Christmas carols, this is a great album! Recommended!