Moto Fukushima

“PLANETARY COALITION” – FULL ALBUM (HD)

Alex Skolnick's Planetary Coalition

Here it is! A full album-excerpts video, which helps visualize the regions covered by the varied musical styles and instruments, and gives a glimpse of the musicians during the recording process.

“It started with a lone, handwritten sentence on a notepad, describing a musical vision: “An ethnically flavored collective of musicians from all over the world, driven by acoustic guitar and bringing together inspirational melodies, in-depth improvisation and the passion of the musical styles of Gypsy, Middle Eastern, Indian, Latin, East Asian, Mediterranean, Balkan/Eastern European, African and other indigenous lands.”

“The reality: coordinating over two-dozen musicians from five continents.”

“Yet despite the numerous logistical challenges, Planetary Coalition has been guided by a single hope: that by weaving the threads that connect musical expressions with regional identities, we can bridge the gap between diverse cultures and people, and increase awareness of the ecological and social issues facing the planet, our island in the sky.” – Alex Skolnick

Video compiled and edited by Maddy Samaddar (NOMAD 9 DESIGN)


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It’s all about the Bass!

Today we’ve featured one of our bass players who has performed on 4 tracks on the album.

Born in Kobe, Japan, Moto Fukushima is a Japan & NYC based six-string electric bass player, upright bass player, composer, mountain dulcimer and syamisen player.

Moto performed on Planetary Coalition’s tracks “Island in the Sky,” “Salto,” “Back to the Land,” & “Sleeping Gypsy.”

Moto will be part of our ensemble performing at ArtsLive, Dayton University on October 29, 2015.

Playing music since childhood, Moto received the scholarship and outstanding performer award before graduating summa cum laude, with highest honor, from the prestigious Berklee college of music in Boston, MA.

With a strong background in jazz improvisation, Western classical music, Japanese traditional music and African inspired musical sensibilities of South America, his playing is an amazing combination of finesse, subtlety, and power and he has performed with many great artists of our time. For more: http://www.motobass.com/


Moto Fukushima

Moto Fukushima


“Island In The Sky” live performance

On Earth Day, last Wednesday, we posted a video of the CD version of the track “Island in the Sky.”

For ‪#‎FlashbackFriday‬, here’s an early version of the track performed live in January 2013 during the launch of Alex’s book “Geek to Guitar Hero.” There are some improvisations here which are possible only in a live performance. Plus Rachel Golub joins us on her violin which is absent in the final CD.

Which version do you like better? The final CD one or this earlier live version? (Mind you, the audio is not that great here in the live performance as the camera was far away and the audience sounds get in the way.)


Album Excerpts and Preview Part 3 – tracks 10 to 14

This is the last of the album excerpts’ series for Planetary Coalition – with glimpses of the last 5 songs on the album. On Novermber 25, 2014, our itunes sales commenced and within a day the album had already climbed to the top 20 world music albums at number 13. Please help support the project – the link to buy the album on Amazon is here: http://www.amazon.com/Planetary-Coalition-Alex-Skolnick/dp/B00OTVQ0L4 and on itunes here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/planetary-coalition/id934930381

This series of excerpts begins with a composition with Cuban influences – with the great Grammy award-winning Cuban percussionist Horacio “el Negro” Hernandezand his daughter Jennifer who co-wrote the piece with Alex.

Following this, both countries of the Holy Land – Israel and Palestine are featured – with renowned Palestinian oud player Adnan Joubran of Le Trio Joubran co-composing a track with Skolnick (a piece with surprises in its full version where the melody takes a rather unexpected turn) followed by a duet with famed Israeli percussionist Gadi Seri (a frequent accompanist in the group of Israeli singing sensation Noa) in a piece inspired by travelling through the Negev desert. Initially both Seri and Joubran were to feature on the same track but, due to different rhythm styles, decided to have two separate pieces.

The fourth excerpt is the first guitar-pipa duet ever performed of a popular Chinese melody – with Skolnick and pipa virtuoso Yihan Chen playing on a variation of Wang Huiran’s tune Dance of the Yi People as “Return of the Yi People” and the colorful landscapes featured in the video are indeed from the region of South China where the Yi people reside. To see the very first meeting of Chen and Skolnick and how they clicked instantly go here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4G-ymgp5e-8

And finally, an excerpt of the popular signature tune of the project – the very first track which Skolnick had composed in 2012 when he conceived of the Planetary Coalition series: Sleeping Gypsy  which includes visual clips of the dancing crowds in Union Square where he kick-started the project in 2012 and later performed once again in the summer of 2014.

On Saturday November 29, 2014, about seven of the twenty seven musicians of Planetary Coalition will play at the Liberty Science Center coinciding with an exhibition on the history and development of the acoustic and electric guitar.

Album Excerpts and Preview Part 2 – tracks 1 to 4

A short video with glimpses of the first four tracks of the album, including two time Juno-award winning Indian ghazal/folk style as well as classically trained singer Kiran Ahluwalia; also, Turkish kanun player Tamer Pinarbasi along with other members of New York Gypsy All Stars; members of the group Raza Truncka from Salto playing Argentine indigenous drums and members of the Brooklyn-based world music group House of Waters. Stay tuned till the end of the video.   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87ncMQRiX44

(Photography and videography of the artists in-studio are by Tom Couture and Maddy Samaddar – who has also done the editing and album artwork. A separate page will be put up to list all other images used, including film clips with copyrights, permissions and detailed credits for all the regional, political and landscape photos used in this video.)


 

 

Twenty Seven Musicians. Five Continents. One vision.

Planetary Coalition’s musicians represent over two dozen countries and five continents and numerous ethnicities. Here is a photo montage of the extremely talented and eminent musicians who are part of this recording. (Click to enlarge.)

Alex Skolnick's Planetary CoalitionFrom left to right:

Row 1: Alex Skolnick, Kiran Ahluwalia, Rodrigo Sanchez, Yacouba Sissoko, Yihan Chen, Pablo Aslan, Tamer Pinarbasi

Row 2: Raif Hyseni, Gabriela Quintero, Adnan Joubran, Dario Boente, Gadi Seri, Jose Luis Terzaghi

Row 3: Horacio “El Negro” Hernandez, Moto Fukushima, Nitin Mitta, Rachel Golub, Jose Armando Gola, Vasko Dukovski, Juan Casanovas

Row 4: Jennifer Hernandez, Max ZT, Shane Shanahan, Luke Notary, Panagiotis Andreou,Engin Kaan Gunaydin, Fausto Nascimbene.