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A sunbeam has struck Paul Winter's Earth Band, and its name is Arto Tuncboyaciyan. This Armenian vocalist, percussionist, and instrumentalist sings in his own personal dialect -- which he calls "Arto-stan" -- and with extraordinary power. From rousing the imagined travelers in "Caravan at Dawn" and railing against the mountain who took his brother's life in "Singing to the Mountain" to the bittersweet tenderness of "Broken Arm" (the Armenian version of a broken heart), Arto charges Journey with the Sun with real guts and palpable emotion. The album's Middle Eastern and Balkan tinges are amplified into lofty new dimensions by Paul Winter's signature soprano sax, Paul Halley's 8,035 pipe organ, Davy Spillane's Uilleann pipes, and Eugene Friesen's cello. Among the more celebratory passages along the way are the stirring "Mountain Wedding," a circle dance inspired by the rhythms of the Balkans, and "Land of the Pipers," a noble march that morphs into a frenzied romp. Grateful Dead percussionist Mickey Hart performs on his self-designed "RAMU," a computerized sample bank set to explode with bursts of mbira, xylophone, and sand drum. Celtic singer Niamh Parsons adds a woman's touch on the traditional ballad "Green Grass, It Grows Bonny," with exquisite piano accompaniment by Paul Halley. There's plenty of exciting inter-band chemistry here, but beyond that, Journey with the Sun is a meaningful excursion that embraces the entire spectrum of the human experience, from anguish to compassion to ecstasy.
Performance CreditsPaul Winter Primary Artist,Soprano Saxophone
Paul Halley Keyboards
Jim Beard Keyboards
Niamh Parsons Vocals
Eugene Friesen Cello
Zan McLeod Guitar
Jerry O'Sullivan uillean pipes
Dorothy Papadakos Pipe organ
Davy Spillane uillean pipes,Low Whistle
Arto Tuncboyaciyan Percussion,Vocals,Sazabo
Eliot Wadopian Bass
Jordan Rudess Keyboards
Damian Pan Flute/Pan Pipes
Vardan Grigoryan Zurna
Dixon Van Winkle Recorder
Technical CreditsPaul Winter Producer
Mickey Hart Contributor
Dixon Van Winkle Producer,Engineer