Dubopera. There's serious truth in advertising in that title: Bill Laswell, a man who has never been hemmed in by any genre boundaries, here combines the melodic glory of opera arias with the rhythmic richness and unique sonic texture of dub reggae. Japanese opera star Masahiro Shimba (the first Japanese artist to receive the Maria Callas Award from the International Maria Callas Foundation) sings a selection of famous arias in an urgent tone over Laswell's strikingly creative reimaginings of the songs' accompaniments, supported by an array of jazz horns, drummers from a wide array of styles including reggae legend Sly Dunbar, electronic keyboards and strings, and of course Laswell's distinctive electric bass sound, so long influenced by the dub style.
Masahiro Shimba is a leading Japanese operatic tenor based in Milan and Tokyo. He is highly evaluated by the Italian classical/opera world and has performed as a solo singer at the Royal Opera Canada, Teramo City Theater, Lincoln Center (NY), Dal Verme Theater (Milan), Verdi Conservatory Puccini Hall (Milan), St. Paul's Outside the Walls (Vatican City/Rome) with Orchestra Sinfonica G. Rossini conducted by Daniele Agiman, and more.
You've Never Heard Such Sounds In Your Life!
C&P 2016 ESP-Disk’ Ltd.
released November 18, 2016
Masahiro Shimba vocal
produced & arranged by Bill Laswell
Material Strings arranged & conducted by Karl Berger
Mary Bogan: vocal
Karl Berger: electronic keyboards
Rob Burger: Fender Rhodes
Josh Werner: Hammond organ, Fender Rhodes
Yukari Fujita: piano
Peter Apfelbaum: tenor saxophone
Graham Haynes: cornet
Bill Laswell: bass
Adam Rudolph: percussion
Guy Licata: drums
Hideo Yamaki: drums
Sly Dunbar: drums
recorded & mixed at Orange Music, West Orange, NJ
engineering: Robert Musso & James Dellatacoma
mastered by Michael Fossenkemper
at Turtle Tone Studio, NYC
voice trainer: Diego D’Auria
concept & production coordination: Yoko Yamabe
designed by Yoko Yamabe @ Randesign
artist photo by Toshiya Suzuki
ESP Disk’ Executive Producer: Garret H. Morris
special thanks: Masaharu Moriya
thanks: Taeko Matsuda