New York, NY - Monday Michiru, long in the forefront of Japan's underground music scene, has teamed up with the innovative internet music company ArtistShare for her first US-based full length release. The delightfully organic Naked Breath" is a departure from Monday's previous, more production-intensive works: a beautifully intimate guitar-and-vocal duet album, it features her own original compositions and accomplished Manhattanbased jazz guitarist Adam Rogers. Monday was based in Tokyo for over 13 years before moving back to the States and has a prolific list of releases from Japanese labels both as a soloist and featured artist; many of her Japanese releases made their way to Europe, Australia, and South America as well. Her impressive roster of collaborations run the gamut from club hipsters including Masters At Work, Joe Clausell, Mondo Grosso, Basement Jaxx, and Kyoto Jazz Massive to jazz and world musos Kenny Garrett, Airto Moreiro, Bill Laswell, Lisa Ono, and many others. She has performed at the Blue Note clubs both in New York and in Japan, and at a host of music festivals such as the North Sea Jazz Festival, the Baltic Music Jazz Festival, Montreux Jazz Festival, Stuttgart Jazz Festival (where she performed with her father, Charlie Mariano), and the Madarao Jazz Festival (where she met her husband, Alex Sipiagin). It was Monday's move to New York in 2000 to start a family that eventually led to her introduction to ArtistShare. I was impressed with how (big band jazz composer/arranger/leader) Maria Schneider, who I think is just brilliant, realized her epic album through ArtistShare's participant project, where true fans of her music can not only monetarily support and sponsor it, but also can witness the creative process at various levels. I think it's the future of music making and selling, bringing back the creative control to the artist without the record company breathing down their neck about the bottom line." It is obvious the ArtistShare formula works: Maria Schneider's CD through ArtistShare has just been nominated for 3 Grammy Awards. Monday is also launching another previously planned participant project through them this month ("The Future Is Yours - 2005"); her initial experiences with the company propelled her to record and release Naked Breath" in the spirit of the freedom her involvement in ArtistShare brings. I've been itching to do an album like this for years which showcases me more as a singer-songwriter without the embellishment of arrangements and productions which sometimes pegs songs into a style but none of the records labels I'd been with wanted to risk low sales numbers for such a specialized project." The result, a thoughtful mix of Monday's new and older compositions, is a beautiful blend of ethereally pure, lilting vocals and deliciously deft guitar work. Both earthy and airy, Naked Breath" is a fittingly innovative US debut from underground music's most prolific muse. Naked Breath" will be available directly through Monday's website and ArtistShare: www.mondaymichiru.com www.artistshare.com
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