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MP3 Robert Tom - new EP

Vocal jazz as if Frank Sinatra had a baby with Nina Simone, and he was raised in a prep school of happy, brainy apes.

5 MP3 Songs in this album (15:25) !
Related styles: JAZZ: Jazz Vocals, EASY LISTENING: Crooners/Vocals

People who are interested in Frank Sinatra Ella Fitzgerald Nina Simone should consider this download.

The straight-arrow EP project is now complete and for sale!

About it all…

ONE YEAR after tracking the band, the album representing my take on five of my favorite straight-ahead jazz tunes is printed and released. If you like super straight straight-arrow vocal jazz, executed in a totally awesome way, then I think you’ll find this recording to be wonderful. I made it as a snapshot in time, showing the way I was interpreting these tunes during the period of extensive local performing in the months leading up to June last year, but as it turned out, it’s really a great interpretation of five standards that’ll last a lifetime.

I’m pleased in that, for all of these songs, I have a different take from any previous existing recording (and these songs being great jazz standards have been recorded many, many times.)

“My Baby Just Cares for Me” is a little bit of a tribute to my favorite artist, in particular with the arrangement, but it’s different enough, and all the other ones are vastly different.

I think this recording of “Lady Be Good” should be published as it’s own melody, but that’s not how publishing works. It’s seriously an original song. A beautiful, haunting, original song. (For liscencing purposes it is NOT an original song.)

“All of Me” and “Paper Moon” have tremendous drive, and I phrase them as if I’m a trumpet. And my favorite comment on “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore” is that it sounds “a little too out there, too driving – 60’s NY jazz.” I think it could be much more out there, but that’s for another recording. I’ve grown a good long year from this recording, and I’m anxious to get into the studio again, both to round out this EP with seven more tracks, and to record a separate project with all my own original songs, which are totally awesome you’ll just have to take my word for it.

So please buy this album! If you can’t buy 10, then settle for just 5. Give four to your music loving friends, and tell them, “yeah, this guy, he’s my bud. I’m in on his very earliest email list, and when I hit ‘reply,’ he actually reads it and answers back.”

Then, when your friends are playing the CD you gave them at a dinner party, they can say, “oh yeah, you hear this guy? The guy who does standards but with more edge, thus making it exciting? He’s actually my friend’s (that’s you) dear close friend (that’s me.)” You’re in on the infancy of it all. You are awesome.

Most likely, I will finish this EP project to a full length (LP), and most likely not all these tunes will make it onto the full length album and I’ll stop printing the EP all together. You will be one of the only people to have it. This e.p. will be 1) your token and proof that you knew me when and that you are a true supporter of new music and musicians, and 2) you’ll actually have the tracks on this disc, which I won’t be making any more.

Thanks to all of you for being so supportive. I don’t know another artist like me, who, without (so far) any label or management or anything, can make such impressive draws to hear live local jazz. I can only do it because of you all. Thanks for listening and enjoy.

A note:

You might be listening to this recording, and hearing the killing performance behind me, and wondering “who are these guys??” Well, even if you are in jazz, you might not have heard of these musicians yet, because they are all men of my generation.

Everyone involved in this project, all of my collaborators and partners, are men of my generation. They aren’t as well known in the jazz world as guys in their 60’s, 70’s and 80+’s, but I deliberately sought out these musicians because they could feel what I felt in this music. It has to do with a different sense, a different sensibility. If anything, I’m sometimes frustrated because my peers don’t want to go as far out as I do. I think this mainly has to do with the genre, and the perilous path between being clichéd and being academic in US jazz today. I trust the sense of the people I choose to partner with, and appreciate when they have an ear for restraint when I want to reach for more. A new sound to old standards is not easy. But for me, it starts with hearing it differently in my own head (different emotionally, not different in the academic sense), and then finding other guys who hear it like me.

So, if you haven’t heard of any of these players, just wait. You will. With the exception of the last production stage (mix and mastering,) everyone who worked on this project, even with the photography and design, and every step from rehearsal to printing, is a kid like me. Also, I thank everyone who worked on this for taking direction from me as the producer, and I am always amazed at the ability that some have to take a sound or picture idea from my head, that I can only express in words, and to make it into a reality that I can’t express any other way.


To buy a real CD, for play in CD players, including the folio insert with the linernotes and the pictures and the whole bit, your in the right place. Just place your order on this very page!

And if you can’t buy 10, then settle for 5. (It’s cheaper per unit that way.)

Who’s gonna be the first person to make my official sale via CD distribution? If you are that first person, you MAY receive a hand-assembled copy of the CD, with a hand-stamp image on the disc itself. (I sent the first hand-done proofs to the distributor to set up my online sell page with them. The subsequent copies are extremely high-quality printings, but I didn’t do them by hand. All the copies, both hand assembled and HQ printings, are mixed together.)

You can tell if your copy is hand cut and assembled by:

1) the CD face is obviously stamped with a rubber stamp.
2) The glossy inserts are cut just a bit crooked.
3) my fingerprints are all over the thing.

I’m sure that these hand-assembled ones will appreciate an especial value, doubtless thanks to my smudgy hands. If you really want me to make you hand-done copies, then email me your order along with a burlap sack full of money, complete with “$” sign on the outside of the sack, because the hand-done copies are very expensive and tedious to make.

After making your purchase, join my MySpace or Facebook if you''re into that sort of thing. (Links are in the column to the left, if you''re reading from the https://www.tradebit.com page.) Bookmark my websites and check them often for performance dates and my irresistible writing (AFTER making your purchase.)

About me and my experience:

Regarding past work, I performed as the lead singer and featured act on tour with the Glenn Miller Orchestra, performing some 100 concerts throughout the United States and Japan, for crowds of about 600-3,000 people a night. After returning to Los Angeles, I performed as the featured act with my jazz band for upscale lounge venues, performing some 70 shows, each lasting 3 hours. Aside from these longer engagements, I’ve also headlined at The Derby, The Roxy, The Cinegrill, The Knitting Factory, and other major Hollywood venues, always on the main stage, performing my own arrangements with my own band, and always with a large draw.

So I can work, I can play, and I play well. But what I''m really interested in now is doing much more interesting and modern arrangements, electronic and hip-hop influenced crooning, and writing originals. Lyrics and storytelling are extremely important to me.

You can have a listen to my current recording, which features a straight-arrow, super straight, straight ahead jazz production. Even so, I hope it comes across that I''m trying new things vocally. What I need now is artists and sound makers who can mash up my sound with a fresh, modern beat. If you''re such a person let me know.

These days, I spend my time writing, rehearsing, and preparing for shows. If you''re a performer let me know and I''ll try to get you to sit in with me sometime.

Yes, Robert Tom is the same person as Robert Kalinowski, Harvard-Westlake ’97.

I sure love that Harvard-Westlake!

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