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A solo album featuring original compositions with one-of-a-kind New York musicians.

For the past two years, I've had the privilege to play with some incredible musicians in New York City. These people have been an amazing influence on my growth as a person and musician, and I want to mark this chapter in my life with a recording featuring a few of these folks. 

I'm so excited to present my debut solo project starring musicians Ross Martin, Rob Hecht, and Pat Falco, plus a couple special guests ;). The record will include 10 of my original compositions, a bluegrass vocal standard, and a collaboration with one of my favorite singer/songwriter/musicians in New York.

For me, this album is special because it's my first chance to put who I am as a composer, musician, and creative leader onto a record and share it with everyone. I can't wait for you to be holding a copy of this record in March!

To keep this campaign exciting, I'll be posting weekly duo videos with my friends in New York playing tunes off the record and other tunes and songs.

and...

I have a challenge for you! Check out the details here.

I am asking YOU to help me raise $10,450 to put this project into action. 

Your donations will be used for: 

1. Paying these wonderful musicians for tracking, rehearsals, and CD release parties

2. Tracking at Bunker Studios in Brooklyn, NY on December 15th and 16th

3. Mixing and Mastering

5. Production costs for 1,000 CDs

6. Hiring a publicist

The Band

Ross Martin: 

Guitarist Ross Martin has performed in concert halls, honky-tonks, theaters, rock clubs, living rooms, on festival stages, television programs and everywhere in between. Having grown up in the suburbs of Dallas, TX, with brief stints in East Tennessee, Ross headed West after attending the University of North Texas and earning a Bachelor of Music degree in jazz studies. After living for ten years in the front range area of Colorado, he relocated to the east coast and has resided in the New York City borough of Brooklyn for the past five years. His musical path has covered as much territory as his physical one. Reflecting his love of diverse genres like jazz, bluegrass, country, folk, experimental and classical music, Ross has always felt at home with fellow musicians who seek to reconcile, through their music, the incredible wealth of styles available to listeners in this global and digital age. He has toured and performed with a wide range of artists including Matt Flinner, Tony Furtado, Ron Miles, Mollie O’Brien, The Motet, Caroline Herring, Dwele, Sonya Kitchell and many others.

Along with bassist Eric Thorin, Ross has been a member of the Matt Flinner Trio for the past six years. Known in acoustic circles for his groundbreaking mandolin work, Matt, a composition major in college, developed a unique concept for the trio. His idea was for all three band members to write a tune each day while on tour and perform it that evening. After several tours, the trio picked twelve of their favorite tunes and recorded them. The result is “Music du Jour” which was released on Compass Records in April of 2009. Many more compositions have been written since and the trio is scheduled to record its second release in September of 2011.

Under his own name, Ross has one recording, “Volley", and another project in the works. The new recording is produced by Matt and features Darol Anger on fiddle, Ron Miles on trumpet, Greg Garrison on bass, Dominic Lalli on sax, Matt on mandolin, Ross on electric guitar and Marc Dalio on drums. Ross is currently performing and teaching in the New York City area as well as touring nationally and internationally with various projects.

Rob Hecht: 

Rob is from central Illinois and has been playing fiddle for 17 years. He grew up playing bluegrass and country with father Bill Hecht (pianist, composition graduate from Berklee College of music, pastor). Mark O' Connor's Fiddle Camp and mentor Casey Driessen played a big part in Rob's development. Rob then attended Downbeat Award Winning Decatur MacArthur High School and played first tenor saxophone in their band, as well as violin and saxophone in the jazz combo. Rob also performed in the second tenor saxophone seat with the Heartland Jazz Orchestra under the direction of Doug Tidaback and Thomas Shabda Noor. Rob was then whisked away to New Jersey to study Jazz Studies on Violin and Saxophone at William Paterson University. Rob studied here with David Demsey, James Williams, Don Braden, Rich DeRosa, and Mark Feldman. 

Rob now resides in Manhattan, and performs with Elizabeth and the Catapult, Adrienne Young, Joe Costa, Mike Block, Jefferson Hamer, Jared Engel, Rob Curto, Richie Barshay, Ross Martin, Todd Livingston, Jim Whitney, Tuey Connell, Dan Marcus, Dennis Lichtman, Jason Mercer, the Six Deadly Venoms, Clay Ross, Mark Guiliana, Josh Roseman, Edward Perez, Hans Holzen, Kari Denis, and the Falco Bros. 

Rob has recorded/performed with Casey Driessen, Noam Pikleny, Blue Merle, Clay Ross, Elizabeth and the Catapult, Jeff Taylor, Andy Friedman, the Defibulators, James Williams, Vassar Clements, and the Prigs.

Pat Falco: 

Patrick Falco is a native New Yorker bass player. Growing up in a suburb of NYC he was exposed to a wide variety of music. Coming from a musical family, both brothers Thomas and Andy (The Infamous Stringdusters) are musicians, Patrick chose to play the upright/electric bass. Receiving a BA (classical) and MA (jazz) from the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College he studied under Carlos Castillo, Pablo Aslan, Antonio Hart, Michael Mossman, Mauress Peress, and Henry Burnett. As a bass player, Patrick has experience in a wide variety of music genres including classical, jazz, blues, rock, pop, country, bluegrass, funk, fusion and has played with some of NYC’s leading musicians. Also a music educator, Patrick teaches orchestra at North Shore Public Schools on Long Island. He lives a block from the ocean and enjoys spending time on the beach with his family and surfing.

Alex Venguer(engineer): 

Alex Venguer was born and raised in Mexico City. After High School he moved to Boston to study at Berklee College of Music, where he studied Music Production & Engineering, as well as taking various classes from the Arranging and Classical Composition departments. After Berklee, he moved to NYC where he started his job as a general assistant at Sound On Sound Studios and eventually he moved up to an assistant position, and during that time he was part of the merge between Sound On Sound and Right Track which would become Legacy Recording Studios. During that period Alex had the opportunity to assist, learn from and work with some of the top engineers and artists in the world.  After some time there he went freelance, but to this day keeps his relation with the studio as one of the few and select engineers that Legacy Recording Studios uses for their sessions.

SInce 2006, when he went freelance, Alex has been recording & mixing for many of the top names in the industry as well as being part of the more indie movement in the city. In 2009 he was awarded a Grammy for recording and mixing Loudon Wainwright's record "High Wide & Handsome: The Charlie Pool Project" which won the "Best Traditional Folk" album of the year. Then, in 2010 he was awarded his second Grammy for his work on the album "Wake Up" by John Legend & The Roots which won the award for "Best R&B" album of the year. In addition to that, he's been involved in various other Grammy winning and nominated albums such as Maria Schneider's "Sky Blue", John Legend's "Evolver" and the song "Shine" as well as the cast albums for the Broadway productions of "Shrek" and "9 to 5".  

Alex is an engineer capable and comfortable with recording and mixing as large or small a project as can come and has had great experience on and working with the top names in styles as varied as jazz, rock, folk, classical, pop, hip hop, broadway, r&b, electronic and many others.  Some examples of the artists he's worked with include Sting, John Legend, Maria Schneider, Marcus Miller, Aretha Frankiln, Wynton Marsalis, Juan Luis Guerra, Phil Collins, Christian McBride, Cassandra Wilson, Sufjan Stevens, Regina Spektor, My Brightest DIamond, Rufus Wainwright, John Patitucci and many others.

Prizes

Everyone who helps me fund this project will get a prize! I will be giving out different awards ranging from CDs, free downloads, stickers, banjo lessons, a personalized video recording, dinner on me, and a house concert!  

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

As a sideman, I usually just show up for the gig, play, and then go home. I'm not used to being in charge and having almost total creative control, which is really exciting, but also thus far has been challenging. I'm not used to doing all of this work(and we haven't even started recording, yet!). I'm also not one to put myself in the spotlight, but I really want to share my music with you, and I think that this is the best way to do it. So, please be a part of this exciting musical adventure with me! (Any contribution helps, even $1!)

FAQ

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116
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    1 backer

    Three free download tracks of your choice, Statue of Liberty thank you video, and an official BSM sticker!

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    11 backers

    A free download of the entire record, Statue of Liberty thank you video, and an official BSM sticker!

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    5 backers All gone!

    An official Bennett Sullivan Music sticker.

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    26 backers

    A free download of the record a week before release and a BSM sticker.

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    38 backers

    A physical copy of the CD and a BSM sticker.

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    A physical copy of the CD, a BSM sticker, and alternate unreleased tracks from the recording session.

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    5 backers

    A banjo lesson from me, plus the previous prizes.

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    2 backers

    I'll record and film myself performing a fiddle tune of your choice and send it to you, exclusively! PLUS, You'll receive a physical CD and BSM sticker.

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    1 backer

    I'll write a personalized tune for you and include a video recording of it. PLUS, You'll receive a physical CD and BSM sticker.

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    You'll be listed on the record as an Executive Producer, as well as receive a physical copy of the CD, a free download of the entire record, a dedicated tune video, and a BSM sticker.

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    0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)

    I take you out to dinner before the CD release party and you get VIP access to the gig! PLUS, You'll be listed on the record as an Executive Producer, as well as receive a physical copy of the CD, a free download of the entire record, a dedicated tune video, and a BSM sticker.

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    House Concert! The band and I will perform at your house! PLUS, You'll be listed on the record as an Executive Producer, as well as receive a physical copy of the CD, a free download of the entire record, a dedicated tune video, and a BSM sticker. *travel outside of New York City not included.

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Funding period

- (30 days)