March 20, 2007

Quarterly Report

Dear Friends

Later today we celebrate the spring equinox, which makes it seem a perfect time to take stock of the events in the creative side of my life in 2007. So read on dear reader . . . It’s been an exciting time

DARLENE LOVE recorded "A Night of Peace" for her Xmas album produced by Kevin Killen. That song was actually written on Xmas day some years ago with Seth Glassman. Seth and I met when I was writing and recording with Cyndi Lauper. Mostly Seth sends me lyrics and I write the music then send the song back and Seth produces them. We have a decent sized catalogue now and have started pitching the songs around.

Lots happening too with my other writing partner CHICO FREEMAN. We have been working together since the beta testing days of the Rocket Network. Mostly Chico sends me music and I write the lyrics. Having said that we both wrote the music for the title cut of the just released Leader's album "Spirit's alike" and another track "Alas poor John" . . . Jazz at its finest as played by Chico along with Cecil McBee, Bobby Watson, Fred and Eddie Henderson.
Our main project this year is completing "The Second American song book" a collection of “new” jazz standards. Some beautiful tunes and songs here! We are always looking for that perfect voice to sing it . . . Our publishing company Icoja Music just licensed music for the film "I hate my job"

I have also started writing with BETSY ULMER, one of Craig Wiseman's protégés who is signed to Big Loud Shirt in Nashville. She is destined for great things. Her mentor is probably one of the most successful songwriters in the history of country music. I met him donkeys years ago when I had just come to TN and he was drumming and "getting going" We even wrote a couple of songs together before he took off into the stratosphere . . . don't you love success stories when they are well deserved! "Live like you were dying"

One of the songs Betsy and I have written will be on the JAJUCHA album that will be recorded this summer. This is a project that Julian Marsh, Charles Green and myself unwittingly started when we recorded a couple of songs for a remix compilation album for Klone Records in the UK. Julian and I were introduced when I started working with Charles back in his Happy Charles days and was a very successful hi NRG DJ. We ended up recording four tracks for his Centaur Pride Compilations. I say was because he no longer does live DJ-ing but just remixes and studio work. . Everyone from Kristine W to Norma Lewis. The JaJuCha album is going to be a very exciting project with lots of guest artists. Watch this space and work out how the name JaJuCha came about . . . haha!

Talking of guest artists. . I have recently got to know a true living legend. The one and only MELANIE. What a treat to meet an artist who lives and breathes music with principles! Her son Beau is just as talented as can be and I have so enjoyed spending time with them between their busy touring schedule and look forward to making music with them both very soon

5250 MUSIC is close to completion. Just seems to have been thwarted by technology gone bad and taken a lot of work! This is a collection of music for film and TV with Dustin Michael of the Experimental Division who I met when I was working with the Project (the ambitious CD that had so much potential but like so many fell apart before it had begun) This is an exciting collection of music and I am looking forward to releasing it this summer

Sadly drummer/musician IAN WALLACE lost his battle with cancer on Feb 22nd. I was lucky to have worked with him whilst he lived in Nashville and Merlyn was lucky enough to have had him as a drum teacher until he moved back to LA. Thanks Ian. R.I.P.

JEFF OSTER has just finished mixing his CD True with two co-written cuts and club remixes in the works. Produced and engineered by Will Ackerman and Bryan Carrigan and now Bruce Sweiden!! A very nice mixture of melodic ambient chill.

TONY GERBER was one of the first people I met when I first arrived in TN. Tony is one of the gurus of ambient electronica with his band Spacecraft and his record label Space for Music. He has performed at Planetariums and festivals around the world. I will never forget when he introduced me to the Internet in the early 90s and disappeared for weeks. . Maybe months into deepest cyber space. Our lives have crossed over the years both in Real life and in Cyber Space and last year he introduced me to Second Life where he resides as CYPRESS ROSEWOOD.

As my life exists mainly in my head the virtual world of second life makes perfect sense to me. So I have jumped in feet first and built the music ALL music Peace Park with streaming radio, live shows, market, shops, galleries and all the trimmings LOL. . and a stage. We start “live” performances in April. WATCH THIS SPACE! Oh yes and my avatar is Jana Kyomoon . . . It's a long way from my Tandy and phone cups!

ANGELS4 TAEGAN is very close to reaching its goal. If you haven't contributed already there's still time. . Go to and read the blog and donate

Also have to mention 3kstatic, Athina, Cyndi Lauper, Roger Rounce, Stephen Seifert and Richard Oakland . . .

. . . and I walked/ran/stumbled and trotted a half marathon last week . . . so I feel like the sky's the limit

Until the next quarter!
Jan P