About Aventurera Album
*10 tracks (+ 2 bonus tracks), in English, Spanish and French
Released March 19th 2016, this album symbolizes rebirth. It calls to the adventurer in each one of us to go beyond what we know, reach into the unknown, challenge ourselves to grow. it is woven into a concept with each song being part of the “Aventurera’s” story: “the adventurer” is each one of us, in some form or another.
It’s the Aventurera who goes beyond the Known (the Zone) and is able to grasp, and be thankful for, the beauty of the unknown: the changes and challenges of Life.
In a very personal way I am reinventing myself by branching out musically, letting go of the past and sharing life’s lessons. I believe that there is something on this album that you will be able to make your own and relate to in the messages embedded into the soundscapes of these songs.
This album is groundbreaking in its richness, representing the synergy of collaborations with talented independent San Francisco Bay area artists and beyond.
Album artists include: Sang Matiz on title track Aventurera, Rahman Jamaal (Change, Once Again), Carolyn Smith (Zone, Can’t Touch), Chatterbox (Take my hand), Seneca (Take my hand), as well as musicians from the Fyah Squad Band (Waddell Bell, Lou Neuburger, Little Sister, Life), Raliegh Neal (keys, Little Sister, Life), Jayme Arredondo (drums, Aventurera, Once Again, Take my hand, Zone), Anthony Ant (trumpet, Once Again, The World, Thankful, Can’t Touch), Dave Eagle (percussion, Life, Take my hand, Thankful, The World, Winds, Can’t Touch), Luke Thomas (guitar, Little Sister, Life) and Joe Newton (drums, Can’t Touch, Winds).
AVENTURERA Album track listing:
AVENTURERA, which means “the adventurer” in Spanish, fuses sweet South American sounds and rhythms together with a flavor of reggaeton, on this modern world fusion track. It represents the intertwining of cultures, bringing together the talents of Razteria and Yuriza Jared from Afro-peruvian funk band Sang Matiz. The listener becomes the adventurer in the song, traveling either physically or spiritually, to grow and heal. Now available for purchase on all digital platforms 1/15/16. Listen to on SoundCloud.
CHANGE, a trilingual crossover track, is a collaboration between Razteria and Rahman Jamaal, two contrasting musical artists, who bring world music, rock and hiphop together on this lyrically conscious track. The music calls for the need to revolutionize our current mind-state as we hold the power to change, without fear. Change is the only constant in Life. Now available for purchase on all digital platforms 1/22/16. Listen to on Soundcloud
LIFE, the oldest track on the record, recorded with Fyah Squad Band, was written 11 years ago, and has finally melted into its first published form, fusing haunting vocals with a tribal beat and 80’s rock. This song’s theme is ageless, calling us to never give up and take on life in all of its forms, symbolized by the contrasting musical passages.
TAKE MY HAND, a funk rock form of ballad, is a song about wishing that the other could see inside your mind, bypassing the misunderstandings that come as a result of the imperfections of communicating through language or the misinterpretation of one’s actions. It features two Bay area based lyricists, Seneca Schachter and Chatterbox who give their personal takes on the theme.
LITTLE SISTER (Lil Eyz Riddim), recorded with the Fyah Squad band and mixed with Suisse label Kinyama Sounds is a lively reggae-pop tune emanating the importance of nurturing relationships, mentorship and love. This is Razteria’s a personal message to her younger sisters and nieces. Listen to on Soundcloud.
ONCE AGAIN is an odd cross of funk and rock and features a rap by Rahman Jamaal and drums by Jayme Arredondo (Don Carlos). It is Razteria’s personal favorite on the album and represents for her true growth artistically and also potentially the most relevant message; a humble wish to live to see, hear and feel loved ones all over the world, once again.
ZONE This was a true empirical experiment. A jam trippy track extracted from on a 30 minute long jam Halloween night (10.31.15) together with pianist and songwriter Carolyn Smith. Jayme Arredondo and Waddell Bell (Fyah Squad Band) redid the drums and bass.
THANKFUL is a simple spiritual song of praise, in the same thematic vein of Gracias a la Vida by revolutionary folk songwriter Violeta Parra. I wrote it while running in the hills of Wildcat regional park, singing to myself, being appreciative of life and ability to feel the beauty of the world.
WORLD is a bittersweet, positively melancholic track which emanates tragic beauty, juxtaposition of the contrasting struggles of so many in this world, with the beauty of this world. It calls for us to recognize and share our lives in solidarity. This fully arranged fully acoustic track featuring Dave Eagle on percussion and Anthony Ant on trumpet.
WINDS this experimental track is layered with me inhaling and exhaling, mimicking the wind. It is inspired by the emotional storms needed to wash away the destruction of a long toxic relationship.
CANT’ TOUCH is a reggae-jazz instrumental tune which fuses Carolyn Smith and Razteria talents. The only vocals are a nearly subliminal french spoken voice, which is a woman leaving a voice message in french to her lover, who she can no longer touch.
ONCE AGAIN (bonus vocal mix) is a powerful yet ethereal mix featuring a multitude of Razteria’s signature harmonies together with rapper Rahman Jamaal. The harmonies are reminiscent of Queen’s complex vocal harmonies.
Recording & Production
90% recorded & produced at my home, Truffula Oak Studio, James Ward, with whom I have been working for the past 9 years, of Live Oak Studio in Berkeley, has helped me take my mixes to the final level and Justin Weiss of Trakworx has mastered the album. Two of the tunes (Change, Little Sister) were mixed at Kinyama Sounds, a Suisse based label.
About Truffula Oak Studio
The home based studio has been progressively building over the past 3 years with Josh Petersen (sound engineer, long-time friend and housemate) with a big help from the Big Tadoo Puppet Crew with the overall construction (framing and creation of the isobooth etc). We are currently up and running with plethora of instruments and minimum recording gear so we are able to rehearse and record. In addition to offering recording and rehearsal space at low cost, once the space is finished, and has some time and experience under its belt, I would like to provide small workshops in recording engineering for artists, with a focus on bringing more women into the scene.
While I can teach the basic level, the advanced workshops would be with experienced engineers from Bay area studios. This training for artists will hopefully build their technical capacity in production so that they can take the entire process into their own hands, as I have been able to do so.
Where does the name come from?
The studio name comes from being nestled in an old growth of live oak trees up hidden in El Sobrante Hills and symbolizes a more general goal of sustainability with the imagery of the Truffula tree, the central focus in Dr. Seuss’s environmentally themed children’s book “The Lorax”. A powerful tale written in 1971 which is more relevant now than ever before, the dire need to conserve the earth’s precious and finite natural resources. The studio is currently 100% solar powered and we are working towards having a food forest and full grey water system.
The message of the Lorax: “UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” Check out http://www.theloraxproject.net for ideas on how to spread the message of the Lorax.
About the artists on the album
Sang Matiz has been performing for 6 years, fusing World and Afro-Brazilian/Peruvian beats with contemporary rhythms such as Pop, Jazz, and Funk. Thanks to a grant awarded by The California Arts Council Endowment for the Arts and The San Francisco Arts Commission for Cultural Equity, they released the album, “Ship It!” Most recently in August 2015, they were chosen and honored to open for the legendary Cuban band Buena Vista Social Club Orchestrafor their “Adios Tour.” Throughout the years, they’ve also had the great opportunity to collaborate with various renowned Bay Area musicians such as: Jackeline Rago (Master Percussionist), Miguelito Martinez (Flutist/Composer), Silvestre Martinez (Composer/Percussionist), and Grammy Award-winner Braulio Barrera (Pacific Mambo Orchestra), among many others. In addition, they’ve had the pleasure of sharing the stage with national and international acts such as Jorge Santana (Malo) and Pete Escovedo.
Members: Yuriza Jared (Lead Vocals/Songwriter/Composer) Eddie Cabezas (Lead Guitar/Arranger) Caroline Chung(Bass/Singer/Vocals) Jesus Martinez (Drums/Vocals/Composer) Clark Seal (Congas & Chimba)
Rahman Jamaal is a performing artist, emcee, musician, actor, and educator who first debuted in the 2003 Sundance Film Festival as the star of the movie “The Beat”. Rahman Jamaal performs for Rondavoux Records, the San Jose-based rap group Projekt S.E.E.R., and the Redwood City-based funk/rock tribute band Blood Sugar Sex Machine. He works with musicians and youth in the Bay Area as founder of the Rap Force Academy, and nationally as the Executive Director of Hip Hop Congress. He also works with organization such as with The Riekes Center for Human Enhancement, The Bring It Back Tour, The Hip Hop Chess Federation, Performing Arts Workshop, StoryTeller Project, and All-Star Karate Center. In 2014, he won the Lennon Award for Hip Hop in the International John Lennon Songwriting Contest (JLSC).
Fyah Squad Band is a Reggae, Funk, & Soul band based in the San Francisco Bay Area. They work with local artists and are one of the top as a backing bands for touring artists in the area. Founding members Waddell Bell (bassie) and Lou Neuburger (drums) are jazz trained musicians who have specialized in Reggae. Artists we currently work with: Rocker T ~ JuniorToots ~ Empress Meditations ~ Razteria ~ Messenjah Selah ~ Irae Divine ~ Sol Atash and more. Touring Artists we have backed: Wayne Wonder and more.
Classically trained pianist, composer and vocalist, Carolyn A. Smith has been teaching piano in the San Francisco Bay Area for over ten years. Her passion is the continuation of learning world music and jazz. She loves to collaborate with musicians of all styles and backgrounds to further her musicianship and carry on this knowledge to the next generation. Her compositions are a infused with jazzy catchy melodies.
A diverse hip-hop and reggae drummer from the Oakland-bay area, he has toured the world from Africa to South America playing for many of the reggae greats and modern dancehall artists. His passion is in diverse musical endeavors suchas Neosoul drumming and indigenous sounds, with reggaeton and salsa in his blood having avoided the traditional western school route, growing up as a punk rocker with hiphop playing all day. “What ever I do .. I do with my whole heart and conduct the energies from all the elements around to make a groove come to life.” Artists he has worked with: Don Carlos, Jr. Reid, Lutan Fyah, Uroy, The Congress, We A Dem, Paris King Band, Soul Captives, Ishi Dube, Jah Sun, Soul Majestic, and more.
Berkeley born and grow, Dave Eagle began learning percussion before he could even walk, accompanying his father to the Ashby drum circle. A supremely cosmopolitan artist well versed in many African diaspora rhythmic traditions, weaned on capoeira, the graceful Afro-Brazilian martial art dance form, Eagle credits the East Bay’s wealth of musical talent with providing an invaluable cultural education. “This is the coolest place ever,” Eagle says. “I haven’t even been to Brazil yet or Cuba, but I’ve played with Cubans, Puerto Ricans, Brazilians, Jamaicans. It has everybody you can imagine at the top levels. Either I’m playing with them or I can go see them at La Peña or Ashkenaz, venues that understand the importance of music.” While he plays in more than half a dozen ensembles, Eagle continues to gather more information. He studied jazz drumming with Alan Hall at the Jazzschool and recently took timbales lessons from Louis Romero, the New York salsa legend who played and recorded with Celia Cruz, Rubén Blades, Héctor Lavoe, and Willie Colón before moving to the Bay Area in 1984. (article credit, Andrew Gilbert, Berkeleyside)
Raliegh J. Neal
At 4 years old Raliegh Neal, learned to play and sing “Proud Mary” on a baritone Ukulele. At the age of 5 he performed for his kindergarten class. It all seemed natural for him. He formed a jazz Quartet in 11th grade called Moment’s Notice named after the John Coltrane classic. While in High School the band “gigged” professionally and participated in many jazz band competitions. Later Raliegh auditioned and was accepted to the University of Miami’s school of music. Raliegh moved to New York City in 1991 and truly discovered the power of music and the arts in direct Community service. He became the Music Director for the CityKids Repertory Company where he implemented a music composition course for beginners and an audio engineering class for more experienced youth composers. After traveling through Europe as a freelance musician, Raliegh returned to New York City and later moved across the country to the Bay Area where he joined Michael Franti and Spearhead as a instrumentalist/singer and songwriter. He also plays Organ for the Allen AME Church of San Francisco, sings and plays drums with the Native American performance group Eagle Spirit which has shown him yet another dynamic to the powers of music in human lives. For Raliegh Neal, II his diverse musical influences and upbringing has equipped him with skills that are rare but essential to developing any positive group dynamic. (bio from Michael Franti website)
Guitarist-Composer-Producer , Luke Thomas is a musical chameleon. His command of many different styles from jazz to progressive metal, afro-beat to funk and reggae, to pop and classical makes him one of the most sought-after session and touring guitarists in Southern California. He is the house band guitarist for Music Skool featuring Justin Hopkins (The Voice) with a residency at American Junkie in Hermosa Beach. After graduating from college with a degree in jazz studies, Luke has established himself as a composer, collaborator, sideman, songwriter, and band leader. He has served as guitarist and backup vocalist as a member of SuperNaked, Empire of One, and eEnik. He has also worked repeatedly as a featured guest with the Midwest-based Jazz Orgy and performed and recorded with San Francisco-based world music and reggae artist Renee Asteria. As a in-demand musician in LA, he has had the honor of working as Musical Director of the Witzenders (houseband for legendary LA West-side club Witzend), and has performed and recorded with artists as diverse as famous session bassist Abe Laboriel Sr., British singer-songwriter James Carrington, Twiggie Ramirez (Marilyn Manson, Nine Inch Nails), LA artist Bianca Caruso (Zabruso), The Voice alumni Jordis Unga and Justin Hopkins, Carmen Perez, and American Idol finalist Justin Carter.
Born in San Francisco and raised in Berkeley on classical and jazz music, he has been playing trumpet since he was 9 years old. Anthony Ant plays with multiple Bay area bands, primarily funk, soul, r&b, jazz and classical music, such as Oakadelic, la Misa Negra, Lucky Devils etc. He currently hosts popular jam sessions at multiple locations such as “Oakadelic Wednesdays” at Era Art Bar and Lounge.
Sirraum Nash aka Chatterbox was born and raised in the South Bay Peninsula of the San Francisco Bay Area in CA. He developed a knack for writing & composition at a very young age beginning to write words in rhyme and poetry at age 7. At age 13, he began to hone his lyrical improvisation skills. In the early 2000’s he became a founding member of Jazz Funk Hiphop band, Precise Device. Since 2009 he has been an integral member of the Big Tadoo Puppet Crew & The PuppetPlex, based out of Berkeley, CA. He currently uses beat boxing, singing, character voice acting and Emcee skills for environmental activism, food and social justice issues, for adult and children’s entertainment.
Raised in Florida, lyricist, singer producer and Dancehall artist Seneca Schachter has made the Bay Area home since 2003 And has been rocking stages since 2000. He has always combined activism and Hip Hop culture to uplift and entertain! He has also established himself as a prolific producer, working with such artists as Myka 9, Dead prez And Bicasso. He is a long time member of the Jazz Mafia and Earth Amplified, touring the Jazz festival circuit and performing over 500 times. He also is a Member of Hip Hop for Change and ROTC hosting every few months at ROTC’s weekly cypher at the Boom Boom Room. He has shared stages with Stevie wonder, Mos Def , Chali Tuna , Will.i.am, Lyrics Born and many more!! Look out for his next project “The Wheel” an ode to real And raw Hip Hop of the 90’s Simple Beats and rhymes. Visit Earthamplified.com for music and culture and email him at Lionsmoke82@gmail.com for Beats and bookings!!
My journey with percussion began when I was born. My father who is a practicing musician, taught me how to play very early on in life. I have created music with several groups throughout the years and complete every year in the national Drum Off competition. I try to speak to the rhythm of the soul.