Indie Band Guru: Shambhu Helps Us Look to the Lilac Skies
Too often in today’s fast-paced world we are entertained and excited by much of the music we hear and we fail to enjoy the true beauty of music. Pop music has become littered with fast, attention-grabbing noise. But we can still find beauty in sound if we expand open our hearts and ears to new styles. Our friend Shambhu (who we interviewed in the past) keeps our mind at ease with his beautiful jazz guitar songs.
The acclaimed jazz guitarist and composer is an expert at transforming stillness and silence into calming sounds. Over his long career, he has been involved with well known projects and artists, playing on Whitney Houston’s “Whitney” with Grammy-winning producer Narada Michael Walden, and performing at a Nassau Coliseum benefit show with Carlos Santana. Shambhu has been a dedicated practitioner of meditation for the past 30 years which has allowed him to gain a feeling of the heart, the experience of personal reflection, and harmony with Nature and Sound.
Shambhu has recently released his 4th full-length album Lilac Skies. The 10-track instrumental record explores jazz, blues, and new age genres – a kind of ‘hybrid jazz’ to soothe the soul.
The opening title track, “Lilac Skies” gets right into it with Shambhu’s intricate guitar work, laying down a relaxed soundscape for all listeners to enjoy. On “Unspoken Words”, Shambhu finds a way to express feelings of love, when the heart is full, using acoustic guitars and without uttering a word. The winding elegance of the song whisps the mind away to another place.
There is a larger sound to “Blue Whispers” which dives into new age territory with the full palette of ambiance led by a tactfully played electric guitar. “Dream Walk” takes this even further with a faster tone and a drum beat that quickens the heart a bit as we enjoy the overall energy of the song.
Towards the end of the album, “Inspired by The Night” has a darker vibe led by Shambhu’s guitar, with beautiful interplay by Premik Russell Tubb’s on soprano sax. This 7:35 minute masterpiece evolves into a gorgeous and transcendent solo by pianist Frank Martin.
The performances overall across Lilac Skies are remarkable for an album that was recorded largely in one day. Kai Eckhardt’s bass playing is brilliant. Celso Alberti’s Brazilian drums and percussion are a master class in taste and time. Frank Martin’s piano performances are heavenly. And Shambhu soars across styles and songs. You will walk away from this album with a new sense of hope and relaxation under Lilac Skies. Sit back and Enjoy. ~Keith Pro