A wonderful review of Wild Monsoon by DyanGarris of New Age Notes:
Wild Monsoon by David Vito Gregoli and Ricky Kej
Album Review by New Age CD and New Age Notes Radio Staff
What could be better than a dynamic musical collaboration between guitar virtuoso, David Vito Gregoli and two-time Grammy® winner, Ricky Kej? Possibly nothing.
The 10-track digital album, “Wild Monsoon,” was years in the making, and also features guest artist, outstanding vocalist, Kimberly Haynes, on one track, “Badra” (Rain). As well, renowned South African flutist, Wouter Kellerman, joins in on "Mahatma,” making that track even more special.
Very well done in every regard, the album is an “East meets West,” world beat kind of thing, with flowing grooves and a joyful, cinematic feel. Some of the instrumentation includes, flutes, synths, piano, drums guitars, bass, and charango. It is a “celebration of the music in nature and an encouragement to find harmony and balance.” I’d say we all need that invitation right about now. So, let’s go. . .
The album opens with “Greeshm” (Summer), which is graceful and smooth, leaving one with a happy, upbeat feeling. Following is “Sheeth” (Winter). This is equally as delightful, with – like winter – its own unique beauty.
Like gently budding flowers and plants, “Vasant" (Spring), is fresh and magical. What I like here on every piece on the album is the perfect build, impeccable performances, intricate, yet not ostentatious instrumentation, percussive details, and truly lovely melodics. It’s just great music.
“Sharad” (Autumn), has an upbeat vibe, and everything has a seamless, sinuous, effortless feel. I love the interspersed male vocals, which bring even more depth to a wonderful composition.
Some other highlights: I am quite fond of “Jharna” (Waterfall), which most perfectly captures the essence of such. Great beat here, among all else, this is another one to love with its flowing elegance.
“Om Shanti, return to nature. . .” is the lovely lyric sung by Kimberly Haynes on “Badra” (Rain). Along with its gorgeous melody, this is very peaceful and upbeat at the same time, leaving one feeling completely refreshed.
The album closes out with “Baadal” (Clouds), which is a perfect close to this very enjoyable album. This has an exotic, mysterious feel, also capturing the majesty of clouds and opening the heart. I love everything about it. I think you will too.
Opposite sides of the world, different generations, same musical inspirations.
2X Grammy® Award Winner, US Billboard #1 artist, GQ Hero 2020, Ricky Kej is an internationally renowned Indian Music Composer and Environmentalist. He has performed at prestigious venues in over 30 countries, including the UN Headquarters in New York and Geneva. Ricky has won over 100 music awards in 20 countries. He serves as the UNESCO MGIEP “Global Ambassador for Kindness”, UNCCD “Land Ambassador”, UNICEF “Celebrity Supporter” & Ambassador for “Earth Day Network”.His vast repertoire of work includes 16 studio albums released internationally, over 3500 commercials and 4 feature films, including the natural history documentary ‘Wild Karnataka’ narrated by Sir David Attenborough.
Ricky’s awards include the United Nations “Global Humanitarian Artist” award and is conferred with the title “Youth Icon of India”. ‘Real Leaders’, a Signatory to the United Nations named Ricky Kej as one of the 100 Real Leaders who ‘Inspire the Future’. The House of Commons, Parliament of Canada awarded Ricky for his “Outstanding Musical and Humanitarian Achievement”.A chapter on Ricky’s life and musical journey is taught in the 7th grade English textbooks in India. Ricky Kej is also a professor at the prestigious National Institute of Advanced Studies.
Vito Gregoli's musical journey began in Pop, Rock and Blues. By the time he was in his teens, he was already hailed as a guitar virtuoso and working regularly in the L.A. club scene. He later studied classical music and received a Bachelors in Music from CSUN.
But it was Vito's spiritual quest that led him to the New Age and World Music scenes. He was introduced to Meditation at the age of 13, and later Yoga. This in turn exposed him to Global Music and World instruments, from sitar to charango. His interests in the healing power of music and his Classical background seamlessly blended in with his expansive experiments in New Age music, expressed in his 1st release as an artist, "Yoga Heart Healing". Each of his subsequent releases reflect the healing aspect of music and his desire to bring that music to a greater audience. Over the years, he's had the privilege of working with such New Age artists as Constance Demby, Jai Uttal, Deepak Chopra, Steven Halpern and Donna De Lory.
Meanwhile, Vito has embarked on the massive task of bringing the sacred text the "Bhagavad Gita" to the world as an album, "Song Divine - “The Bhagavad Gita Rock Opera”. Writer Lissa Coffey has translated the book: "Song Divine is written in verse and rhyme, the way the Bhagavad Gita (translated to "The Song of God" from Sanskrit) was originally intended." The album featured Indian superstar Sonu Nigam and was released in October of 2021 to great acclaim.
Vito’s next release is with 2x Grammy winner and environmentalist Ricky Kej. “Wild Monsoon” drops in June 2022. It’s a eclectic blend of World Beat and New Age. Ricky and Vito paired last on Vito’s “Om Land” album Vito brings integrity and unique artistry to music that defies pigeon-holes. "I have the ability to hear something in everything" I can see round the bend when someone plays me an idea. That inspires me in the job of Producer.