World Music

“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)


Guitar meets Kora – Planetary Coalition’s Africa-inspired tunes

How did Planetary Coalition’s Africa-inspired tunes come into shape? Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at the first practice duet of Alex Skolnickand Mali’s famed kora player Yacouba Sissoko, and a background of the man who lent his voice to the tracks “Alla La’ke” and “Back to the Land.”

While the inspiration for “Alla La’ke” came during this afternoon practice session, “Back to the Land” is a melody Alex had composed back in 2012 and wanted to infuse some authentic African instrumental music and voice as well, which Yacouba made possible.

Kora – the 21-string traditional Malinese instrument: Yacouba Sissoko
Guitar: Alex Skolnick

Filmed and edited by Maddy Samaddar


 

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.)


 

 

It’s 11/11 and our album has been officially released!

New York, New York, 11/11/2014. Our album is now officially released! This date also marks the centenary celebration to mark the end of World War I.

As we often say here – Make Music, Not War.

We are grateful to all who have contributed, supported and appreciated this project. Please support the arts by getting your copy of the album today and/or spreading the word to your friends and families.  Here’s a sneak peak into some pages from the album. Enjoy!


From Inception to Implementation

From its inception in Union Square on summer solstice day, June 21st, 2012 – Planetary Coalition has now grown into a truly global music project. Our CD will be released on 11/11/2014.

Twenty seven musicians. Five continents. One vision. Alex Skolnick’s Planetary Coalition - featuring Rodrigo y Gabriela, Adnan Joubran, Horacio “El Negro” Hernandez, Kiran Ahluwalia, Pablo Aslan, Yacouba Sissoko, Yihan Chen, Gadi Seri, New York Gypsy All Stars & many others - infuses the passion and artistry of the musical styles of Latin, Gypsy, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, Indian, Balkan/Eastern European, East Asian, African and other indigenous lands.

Twenty seven musicians. Five continents. One vision. Alex Skolnick’s Planetary Coalition – featuring Rodrigo y Gabriela, Adnan Joubran, Horacio “El Negro” Hernandez, Kiran Ahluwalia, Pablo Aslan, Yacouba Sissoko, Yihan Chen, Gadi Seri, New York Gypsy All Stars & many others – infuses the passion and artistry of the musical styles of Latin, Gypsy, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, Indian, Balkan/Eastern European, East Asian, African and other indigenous lands.

An ethnically flavored collective of diverse musicians from all over the world, Planetary Coalition is driven by the acoustic guitar of Alex Skolnick, whose work spans jazz (Alex Skolnick Trio), metal (Testament), and world music (Rodrigo y Gabriela).

In the virtuoso’s own words from the upcoming album’s notes:

“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. And I must confess that with respect to all prior musical collaborations, this is the album I feel most proud of. It’s hoped that in the future, these pieces can be performed not just in concert venues but as audio-visual presentations in galleries, museums and classrooms.”

Alex Skolnick's Planetary Coalition

“I am grateful to all the incredible artists who eagerly took part, some from across the world, others a few subway stops away; some eluded by mainstream recognition, others who worked on their parts in between sold-out concerts and national television appearances; a few from regions that have long been politically at odds yet refusing to let politics or ideology dictate art, music and humanity; and all of whom are the type of musicians I’m most inspired by – master players for whom technical virtuosity exists, but never at the expense of artistic expression, emotion and collaboration……”

Planetary Coalition album artwork detail

(click image to enlarge.)


Alex Skolnick on the process of music writing

This is a trailer of one of the processes that participants will be privy to. There is much more. Visit PLanetary Coalition’s project page at Artistshare  (http://artistshare.com/v4/Projects/Ex…) to learn more.and join as a basic or Bronze, Silver, Gold and/or Executive Producer level participant to get exclusive personal access to Alex and various artists, and to help make the recording of this world music project possible.

A glimpse of some of the sounds and textures of Planetary Coalition

This video consists of a few excerpts from live performances giving an idea of the sounds and texture of the music of Planetary Coalition.

Founded by guitarist Alex Skolnick, the group includes a core team of musicians and artists in New York and will include special guests from across the world. The final recording will constitute of other international musicians from various countries, as explained in detail in our Welcome video.

Planetary Coalition will be making its debut recording through ArtistShare® To support this project go to: http://www.artistshare.com/v4/project…

The beautiful artwork and graphics of Planetary Coalition, as well as compilation of its welcome video and others available for purchase on artistshare, is made  by the incredibly talented architect and landscape architect Maddy Samaddar  (of Nomad 9 Design, New York & Open Building Research, Italy,) who has worked on over 80 design projects in 15 countries in five continents. She will also be co-ordinating the project’s artwork and its ecological and environmental aspects. 

Thank you for your interest and we hope you’ll join us in this process, and on this musical journey with Alex Skolnick and his musical guests.

As described in our welcome video, you can contribute through your ideas, essays, artwork, photos, postcards as well. An address will be placed soon for receiving mail on this site.

For those who want to help fund the project through small or large contributions go to: http://www.artistshare.com/v4/projects/experience/325/439/1/6

Planetary Coalition: a world music project by Alex Skolnick. An artistshare fan-funded project. (Artwork of this poster  © 2013 Maddy Samaddar Nomad 9 Design.

Planetary Coalition: a world music project by Alex Skolnick. An artistshare fan-funded project. (Artwork  © 2013 Maddy Samaddar Nomad 9 Design.)