Polar Bears in the Snow
POLAR BEARS IN THE SNOW by LIONEL ROBINSON Lionel on Keys & Vocals Andrew Oh on Saxes, Flutes & Percussion Darcy Wright on Double Bass Sunil da Silva on Percussion Diane Hirlian on vocals Maryanne Slavich on Vocals 'It is a testimony to the vanity of man to want to leave a footprint on the planet after he has gone - something to prove he existed, that he made a difference for the good, however slight. I should speak for myself, shouldn't I? As a musician, I derive great comfort from the thought that, after I've shuffled off this mortal coil, someone somewhere might be listening to a song or two of mine. I expect this planet would be a much more desolate place for me if I had not found all those magical footprints others left behind! So here I am, vanity intact, putting on a comfortable pair of size 9 1/2 Latin loafers and stepping out again... This album came from two live sessions at Moonlight Studios, and both were an absolute treat for me. At the first one Jimmy Stead blew some sax while I played keyboard and sang. Jimmy had walked into a gig of mine with his sax and politely asked if he could play along. It was a perfect meeting. He was on holiday and glad to find someone who did his kind of stuff, and I was amazed to find myself playing with a member of the original John Barry Seven! (Google that one if you're not a trainspotter like me) This man played on the original James Bond theme for Dr. No in 1962! "Let's get in the studio", says I. The second session I was tinkling my FP7 again while Andrew Oh & Sunil de Silva got percussive together and Darcy Wright showed his mastery of the double bass. After the fun was over, Andrew overdubbed all manner of flutes & saxes and I did some singing with a little help from my friends, Diane & Maryanne. All the while John Cobbin twiddled the knobs for a great live sound. I wrote a couple of new tunes. Mademoiselle (aka Lady Love) features some gorgeous alto flute amid my pontificating about that old she-devil, Love, and Boys Talk gave me the chance to create a keyboard collage using groovy Roland E80 sounds - Wurly, clav, Hammond, marimba & strings, to name a few. The rest of the repertoire features faves of mine from the likes of Jobim & Porter, and even a pair of beauties from Lennon & McCartney - another first for me. A big thank you to the musos for being who they are and playing the way they do. Also to John for rising to the occasion and helping me meet the deadline. Huge thanks gp to Andrew Oh for his input - his musical genius, total professionalism, time, encouragement and friendship - and for putting up with my dubious sense of humour. This CD is dedicated to my big brother Harry, who still shares my passion for music, particularly from those surreal sixties, when music defined our lives. Thanks for introducing me to all that wonderful stuff! Love from Lionel.' Review: 'POLAR Bears in the Snow is the new album by Avalon musician Lionel Robinson and it's even more laid back than his last record, Dear Moon. The ''Latin-playing lounge lizard'' has a raft of excellent musicians joining him on this record, adding their touches, with people such as Sunil de Silva on percussion, Andrew Oh on saxophone and Darcy Wright on bass guitar. But it's unmistakably Robinson at the helm, stearing the mood of Polar Bears on vocals and at the keyboard. This is an album of standards apart from a couple of classy originals. Robinson once touted the expression ''music to watch girls by'' to describe his live performances, and this album suits that phrase - maybe while lying on a faux critter rug with someone special.' - Rod Bennett MANLY DAILY.