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Rick Sparks Half Moon Bay album on RADIO nuages playlist

According to new-age keyboardist Rick Sparks, “There’s something special about the ocean. The beach is a great place to relax, meditate, commune with nature, fall in love, nurture love or just escape from the pressures of everyday life. For me, Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys were the absolute best at capturing that summertime beach magic. I used the ocean and Brian’s great musical legacy as the inspiration for my new-age instrumental album, Half Moon Bay. My hope is it will transport the listener to a place of peace which I always find walking along a beautiful beach with the sounds of the surf.”

 Half Moon Bay is Sparks’ fifth album and contains seven new original tunes along with his instrumental arrangements of three Brian Wilson compositions. The music features the hallmarks of Sparks’ sound — exquisite piano and stunning string arrangements. These are augmented with soft angelic voices doing wordless vocalizations, plus solo string instruments (violin, cello), electric and acoustic guitars, flute, bells and other sounds. Sparks calls his recordings “music to replenish your spirit” aimed at fans of new-age and neo-classical music. Piano is most-often the featured instrument, but Sparks is an adept arranger who uses synthesizer to give his music layers, textures, colors and additional depth....(New Age Music Guide) Rick Sparks’ musical influences have been many and diverse, from a grandfather who played Tennessee banjo clawhammer-style, to being an FM-radio DJ in the 70’s & 80’s, to programming a leading new-age music station today on (The Cove). A lifetime spent as a pianist, broadcaster and teacher has led to four quiet-music albums since 2014: Half Moon Bay (2018), Nightfall London (2017), Matilda's Flowers (2016) and Endless (2014).

Rick got an early taste of public performance when he started playing piano in church as a teenager. "Mom was a church pianist & organist and Dad played guitar & sang in church, so my brothers & I got an early education in the spiritual power of music. There's no doubt that those gospel songs helped lead me to faith in Christ when I was 12." Rick's teen years set the pattern for decades of service as a church pianist. Along the way, he earned a master's degree in music and accompanied legendary artists like The 5th Dimension's Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis Jr., gospel great Alvin Slaughter of Brooklyn Tabernacle, and American Idol finalist Phil Stacey.


Hear Mark Dunn's Melodic Voyage on RADIO nuages

Mark Dunn was born and raised in Philadelphia, and took to the piano at an early age, beginning lessons at age seven. By the sixth grade he was composing, and he studied classical music at the Bryn Mawr Conservatory of Music, though he had developed an interest in jazz by his teens. He also studied jazz harmony and improvisation with Jimmy Amadie and formed his own jazz band, featuring a young Kurt Rosenwinkel, in high school. Later, he took music courses at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. He played in jazz bands in the area, taught music, and played on cruise ships. His first album, Mark Dunn, was a jazz date, but he became more interested in Celtic, new age, and particularly Caribbean music, learning to speak Spanish and Portuguese as he spent more time in Central and South America. A 1997 backpacking trip through Central America, on which he took a pennywhistle as a composition tool, inspired his second album, Return to Peace, subtitled "A Celtic Journey Through Central America," which he pressed up for sale at his shows in 2004 and released formally to retail in June 2005. ~ William Ruhlmann

Jim Pearce album A PIANO STORY on RADIOnuages playlist

Beautiful , Evocative and Deep music, featuring piano with orchestral elements. Music that tells a story. Pianist and synthesist Jim Pearce, who has composed and recorded music for more than 300 television shows, has released his first new age/neo-classical album, A Piano Story. Previously known for putting out seven jazz recordings, performing extensively in the jazz genre, and winning numerous award competitions, Pearce says with his new album he simply wanted to offer beautiful, melodic, “feel-good” music.

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