is a great way to pay anyone with an email address using a credit card or a checking account. They have
over 20 million registered users and have just been bought by eBay. Reputable
and a friend to the small guy.
Between the songs, the recording and the musicians, Shades of Images, like the shoebox in the song, was a long process of creating, processing and patiently sifting that has yielded this album.
In addition to her singing lead and background vocals and composing all of the lyrics (except "Woodstock" by Joni Mitchell - that she calls "Back To The Garden") and all the music (except "What Is So?" and "Dig Deep" written by Justin Gray), Aliah also plays keys on the songs: "Shades of Images", "Captain Jack", "Sweet Life", "Back To The Garden", "Silence Fills Sound", and "Listen". She co-produced these songs, along with "Little Shelf", with Mitch Watkins at his studio THE INSTITUTE and "Dig Deep", "What is So?", and "Come Alive" with Paz Rheinstein at PEACEFARM STUDIOS.
Mitch was a major force in making this album possible. In addition to his amazing Guitar work on songs 1-7, Mitch did all of the engineering and mixing for those songs and drum programming on songs 4-7.
In addition to being one of Austin's best and hardest working jazz and rock guitarists, Mitch has now become one of the foremost producers in town. His credits include Abra Moore's Strangest Places, Joe Ely's Hi Rez and a recent collaboration with Bob Schneider, Under the Onion Trees. Check him out www.mitchwatkins.com/
Paz plays flute on Back to the Garden, sings background vocals on Listen and plays guitar on Dig Deep and What is So as well as helping to engineer and mix those two songs.
In addition to being chief technical and emotional support for Aliah's infinite creative labors and her life partner, Paz plays guitar, flute, bass and vocals in Spiral, the couples' "psychedelic funk" band. He is soon to release Zoom Pop, an improvisation journey with bass virtuoso Steve Bernal and veteran drummer Brad Evilsizer.
Justin beamed into Austin and played in Aliah and Paz's band Spiral for a short while. The music for Dig Deep and What is So were composed and recorded (multiple bass tracks and drum programs) by Justin as a demo to show what he could do on the Bass. Aliah immediately had bigger plans. In addition to rounding out Shades of Images, these two songs were featured on the SOTV 2001 SxSW special.
Justin continues to orbit the outer stratospheres of Texas and will hopefully find a way to contribute his major musical talent and bass abilities somewhere where we all can here him!
Ambient Down Tempo
This is Aliah's most unusual song with it's story telling and spoken word poetic rap, it was hard to describe until a DJ claimed it as: Ambient Down Tempo.
"Little Shelf" has been described as: Laurie Anderson meets Bjork with a touch of Tori Amos. Aliah plans to perform it in her show that's currently in pre-production, Creativity Lives!, a celebration of the Artist in each of us and the Creativity in all of us.
Alternative Pop Rock
Sweet Life has been described as: a mixture of Tori Amos & Fiona Apple yet stands apart from them with its unique chanting vocal textures. Aliah's comments, "This song is about the wondrous miracles of love in our life, and how even with the bitter sweet stuff we all experience, with enough overview, we see it all as sweet as we come to understand just how precious every part
of life is."
Alternative Pop Jazz
This song is about how artists have bolts of inspiration and how this can be painful, if not fulfilled. Aliah comments,"I feel that creativity is what the Full Moon energy is all about- and we need to express ourselves. I also feel that everyone is an artist, so everyone should do something creative. Expressing creativity.. especially at the Full Moon, is a powerful source of energy that could help to heal many of the world's problems."
Alternative Pop Rock
Aliah's comments on the the inspiration behind the title song
of her new CD that celebrates being an artist.
"This song was about my choir teacher in high school who believed in my singing and encouraged my songwriting by telling me to keep collecting all the poetry I was writing. He said that they just might end up in future songs. So, there they were: written on napkins, scraps of paper.. really anything I could get a hold of when inspiration was coming. I just kept them all in an old shoe box that I kept under my bed, and actually I did end up using a lot of the pieces later.. writing poetry saved my soul and that teacher believing in my budding abilities meant everything to me. So reach out and encourage budding artists.. creativity is who we is."
Aliah remembers, "There really was a Captain Jack and I really did meet him in a laundromat. He was really drunk most of the times I was there and yet, he was often offering surprisingly insightful words.. he spoke about his 2 black cats & his friend who had just died. I got him an early demo of the song and it made him really happy..
life is so rich with material!"
Aliah's comments, "This song was on my first CD, Acoustic Perfume, then we re-did it for this one by cleaning it up a bit rhythmically and even placed each sitar part (by Chris Corbie) carefully back in. I sang it much lower and Mitch put a pitch control thing on my voice so that when I slid vocally, it would duel with me for the pitch.. it was a trippy experience and the effect turned out quite interesting. This song is about listening to your own intuitions and how what we perceive is what we create..."
"they offer us a garden, when we can already watch the flowers grow.. if we listen.."
Aliah's comments, "This song was an nod to Joni Mitchell (I did change the chords to the music and the melody is somewhat different) and her golden lyrics about a time when kids came together to teach the world what peace looked like.
One day I plan to turn it into a club re-mix."
Tablas and Digereedoo are the background for this very unusual pop song about letting your dreams come to you. The original lyric, "you can do anything you set your mind to" was rewritten by Aliah in response to a change of perspective: "I no longer feel that setting my mind to things is the best way to go about manifesting. In fact, I have found it often works against whatever I am trying to accomplish, making me less less flexible to respond to whatever is happening. I changed the lyrics to express the way I see things unfolding in my life at this point: 'see it, free it, watch it come alive'."
Alternative Pop Rock
Some have described this song as "Incubus-like". The song began as Bass and Drum tracks by Justin Gray. Aliah recalls where the concept came from,"The inspiration for the lyrics were taken from my first voice teacher's son who had O.D.ed and his brother (a friend of mine) gave me a poem that he had written and he wanted me to write something to it.
All I remember from the original poem was:
"a marble, a marble crystal, oh what a lovely sight, a world within,
a world where in, sad times never bother me."
I ended up not using his exact words, yet I did use his idea of a marble and I did want to give him credit for it. Sorry, I don't remember his brother's name or his for that matter anymore- it was many years ago. In the after life we are timeless so even though it's been a few years, I feel him smiling at me for giving him partial writer's credit."
Aliah to came up with the term Rave Rock when she was unable to describe this song to a friend - who countered 'Jane's Addiction meets U2'. Bass and Drum tracks by Justin Gray are complimented by lyrics Aliah reworked from a song she wrote back in the days of her San Francisco Band METRO.
Chorus: Ageless is the love that binds us,
that's the only truth I know
The rest of life seems a contradiction,
who really know's what is so?