Tag Archives: jazz

James Woolwine Brings Fresh Energy to the World of Instrumental Music

James WoolwineMulti-instrumentalist James Woolwine has been blessed with a rather heterogeneous musical life up to this point.  From Classical to Jazz, Rock and even Heavy Metal interests, his background in music certainly offers the potential for great things to come.

James began studying piano at the age of 7. He immersed himself in Classical music, with dreams of composing symphonies and concertos. (James used to “air-conduct” Beethoven’s 9th symphony). By the end of high school he was winning scholarships and competitions, seemingly on track to a conservatory education. However, his adolescent urges to “rock out” overwhelmed his Classical inclinations. At the age of 16 James added guitar lessons to his piano studies. Dreams of composing symphonies were replaced by dreams to form the next great Heavy Metal band. He carried this ambition to Berklee College of Music, as a guitar major.

James threw himself into his college studies; adding Jazz harmony and contemporary songwriting to his Classical skills. Ultimately, his Heavy Metal aspirations were not achieved; but he discovered a new fascination in acoustic fingerstyle guitar. James graduated from Berklee cum laude with degrees in Performance and Music Business.

After college, James played in several bands; but found that working in groups can be frustrating. He sought refuge in his roots, composing and performing more frequently as a soloist. In 2009 he began a songwriting collaboration with a talented singer. Together they completed a large catalog of original material, but after three years the partnership fizzled out. Unwilling to give up on their songs, James began singing them himself; while continuing to compose new solo music. However, after three more years experimenting as a singer/songwriter, he ultimately realized his true musical voice is not sung; but played. With renewed focus he committed himself to his (by now) large catalog of solo compositions.

James’s diverse musical upbringing is reflected in his debut album, Solo Piano Destruction.  Featuring a rather bold and daring album cover, Solo Piano Destruction offers up a couple of  Katy Perry cover songs as well as 8 of his original compositions.  It has been a Menu Favorite on KC Cafe Radio since November, 2015.

Recently KC Cafe Radio Music Director Kathy Forste talked with James via Skype.  He describes his diverse music background, and the influences that shape the music that featured on his album.  They also touch on the business of making music, including working as a session musician, performing live and recording.

Listen to the interview here:

Download the interview here: Interview: James Woolwine, 1/5/2016

Music by James Woolwine on KC Cafe Radio

Chappell and Dave Holt Performs With the Passion of Stone and Fire

Chappell and Dave HoltIt’s not everyday that two such diverse individuals come together to make beautiful music.  In the case of Singer/Songwriters and husband/wife duo Chappell and Dave Holt, their diverse upbringings bring together a unique music sound that is music to everyone’s ears.

They call their brand of music “The Jazzy Side of Americana,” with musical influences that range from Ella Fitzgerald to Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell and Steely Dan.

Dave studied piano at Toronto’s Royal Conservatory. The 60’s brought rock ‘n’ roll, blues, jazz, and a move to Northern California, while honing his songwriting skills. He toured and recorded with Rosalie Sorrels and Frontier, was accompanist to blues/jazz singer Pamela Polland, and her “Melba Rounds Review,” with his mastery of the James P. Johnson piano style, and fronted his own rock/jazz band before he and Chappell began their partnership. Later he earned an SFSU BA and Master’s in Creative Writing and has become a published award-winning poet, and is often in demand to read and perform his poetry accompanied by his drum and Chappell on guitar and vocals.

Chappell, the daughter of a minister, grew up singing gospel music. Frequent moves took her Navy family to San Diego. With a guitar, dulcimer, and autoharp she left for Northern California during the 70’s folk music reviva,l inspired by the new singer/songwriters and the soulfulness of jazz. She began to explore merging poetry with music in songwriting, performed extensively, wrote and recorded for independent films and was an in-demand studio singer. She is an artist, a professional seamstress, and designer.

Together they carve out a blend of musical styles that travel the breadth of the American landscape in both original contemporary stylings and interpretations of classic songs from all eras.  Their newest album, Stone And Fire is a genuine representation of their unique sound.

Recently, KC Cafe Radio Music Director Kathy Forste talked with Chappell and Dave Holt via Skype.  They each tell the story of their unique musical lives, and how they eventually came together  both musically and as true soul mates.  They also talk about their artistic lives outside of their music, and how even those experiences play a creative role in their music.


Listen to the interview here:


Music by Chappell and Dave Holt on KC Cafe Radio:

Chappell and Dave Holt - Stone & Fire Chappell and Dave Holt – Stone & FireRequest this album

New Music on KC Cafe Radio: April 14, 2015

For our April release of new music we welcome 8 new albums and 3 new Performing Artists into the rotation. Check them out here:

Dave Panico - Tasty Treat Dave Panico – Tasty Treat

  • Jazz/Smooth Jazz

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The Vogts Sisters - My Own Dixie The Vogts Sisters – My Own Dixie

  • Americana/Folk

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John Roy Zat - Who Zat? John Roy Zat – Who Zat?

  • Americana/Folk

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Tim Duggan - Obscurity Tim Duggan – Obscurity ~New Artist~

  • Americana/Folk

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Tom Levin - Them Buffalo & Them Feet Tom Levin – Them Buffalo & Them Feet ~New Artist~

  • Folk/Alternative

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Steve Epley - Butterfly Steve Epley – Butterfly ~New Artist~

  • Folk/Jazz

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Steve Epley - It Took a Village Steve Epley – It Took a Village ~New Artist~

  • Pop

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KC Cafe Radio Walt Cronin – Sense the World (single)

  • Folk

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New Music on KC Cafe Radio: January 20, 2015

Doug Adamz - National Steel Doug Adamz – National Steel ~New Artist~

  • Americana/fingerstyle

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Bob Marshall - Horses That Run far Away Bob Marshall – Horses That Run far Away ~New Artist~

  • Country/Country Rock

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The Better Halves - All Over the Map The Better Halves – All Over the Map ~New Artist~

  • Folk

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Steven Gellman - Revisited Steven Gellman – Revisited

  • Folk/Acoustic

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Judy Nazemetz - Variety Pak Judy Nazemetz – Variety Pak ~New Artist~

  • Country/Traditional Country/Comedy

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Susan Enan - Plainsong Susan Enan – Plainsong ~New Artist~

  • Folk/Alternative Folk

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Victor & Penny and Their Loose Change Orchestra - Live at the Living Room Theatre Victor & Penny and Their Loose Change Orchestra – Live at the Living Room Theatre

  • Pop/Jazz

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Kasey Rausch - Guitar In Hand Kasey Rausch – Guitar In Hand

  • Folk/Traditional Folk

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KC Cafe Radio Concert Series: Elliott Ranney

EElliott Ranneylliott Ranney is a Jazz musician and recording artist. His album, An Aging Sailor’s Dream, was released in the Spring of 2001 through Wildstone Media, based in St. Louis, Missouri. The recording was re-released internationally in 2012 through Inpartmaint, LLC, on the Rip Curl Records label, based in Tokyo, Japan. Ranney released his second album of original songs, Bellevue Shuffle, in Autumn of 2013.

Elliott performs finger style classical guitar, backed with his cool mellow vocals. His original music is derived from Bossa, Swing, Ballads and popular Jazz standards. In his live show, Ranney covers all the bases with an energy that is laid back, yet engaging and in the groove. His brand of sound can be described as a Jazz/Acoustic hybrid, with undertones of Latin and Swing. Like a warm soft breeze blowing your troubles out to sea, if only for a little while.

Elliott Ranney: Bellevue ShuffleElliott has shared the stage with Folk Rock icons: Brewer & Shipley, Shawn Phillips, and singer/songwriter, Jonatha Brooke. He is a regular performer at Blue Sky Vineyard, near Carbondale, Illinois.; Peaceful Bend Vineyard in Steelville, Missouri.; and Picassos Coffee House in St. Charles, Missouri. From time to time, Elliott is joined on stage by his wife, Ellen Claire Ranney on vocals his sons Stephen Ranney on upright bass, and Bryan Ranney on mandolin, and his long-time friend and superb Latin percussionist, Patrick Rodriguez.

Saint Garamonds Armenian Church, Kansas CityKC Cafe Radio was pleased to present Elliott Ranney in his very first visit to Kansas City on Saturday, September 13.  He performed works from Bellevue Shuffle, as well as An Aging Sailor’s Dream.  Our venue for Elliott’s performance was also new to the KC Cafe Radio Concert Series, Saint Garabed Armenian Church in Kansas City.   We were pleased to host such an amazing and talented performer in such a unique venue.

Listen to the performance here: