The Gottabees (2015)


Lollipops For Breakfast – This is our second show with Bonnie Duncan (a follow up to Squirrel Stole My Underpants), and showcases the original score that Tony Leva & I perform live.

Album notes:  You can’t have lollipops for breakfast! But today, Sylvie decides she’s going to break that rule, even if it means she has to make her own amazingly perfect lollipop from scratch. Come along as she and her trusty pet bird search for missing ingredients, wrestle with giant candy machines, and get lost in a magical pop-up cookbook.

Phil Berman (2015)


Phil Berman & I started working on this album in the summer of 2013.  He initially approached with me some rough iPhone demos and I instantly fell in love.  We spent months working on ideas & arrangements and after a successful Kickstarter campaign, we booked a week at Dimension Studios to put it all together.

This album features an incredible collection of musicians.  Along with Phil leading on voice & guitar, we had two Rhythm Sections (Raky Sastri with Tony Leva, and Ariel Bernstein with Derek VanWormer), a String Trio (Valerie Thompson, Rachel Panitch, Abigail Reisman), a Horn Section (Danny Fratina, Rick Stone, Randy Pingrey & Kathy Olson) along with French Horn (Anne Howarth), Clarinet (Anna Patton), Piano (Brian Eyberg), Mandolin & Banjo (Colin Forhan), and Josh Mamaclay (Uke & Vocals).

It’s an epic collection of compositions and performances.  Check it out!

Kristen Ford Band (2015)


We recorded this album live at the Middle East Upstairs in Cambridge, MA on January 3rd, 2015.

All songs by Kristen Ford, arrangements by Kristen Ford Band.
Recording engineer, mixing & mastering by Ariel Bernstein

Kristen Ford  – lead vox & guitar

Brendan Burns – lead guitar

Kirsten Lamb – upright bass & vox

Ariel Bernstein – drums & vox

Kristen Ford Band (2014)


We recorded this at Dimension Sound Studios in late 2013.  It’s one of my favorite recordings by KFO and great representation of her wide musical range.

Completed in four days in what Ford described as a cohesive manner—“all in one studio, same group of people play guitar and sing at some time and give it live feel and keep it from being overproduced. Digital music can be too perfect.” Propelled by energetic guitar arrangements the power-punk-pop songs blend many elements. Folk, jazz, blues. Quite bold. It’s an organic, magnificently emotional and insightful collection of songs. – EntertainmentRealm.com

Will Dick (2014)


The Tide Is Turning is Will Dick’s latest album.  Like his previous release Ghosts In The Cove, it presents original songs dealing with matters of the heart, spirit, and experience.  Rock, folk, and country come together here in a consistently warm presentation.  I served as a Producer, Guitarist & Arranger for this project

Indiscreet Discretion (2013)


In the summer of 2012, I wrote the score for Silvia Graziano’s play Indiscreet Discretion (originally produced by Fort Point Theatre Channel).  It was my first collaboration with Silvia, and she wrote a beautiful script that I fell in love with instantly.  Her use of tension and subtext inspired music from me that evoked the challenging and sometimes tortured feelings of unconscious desire.  The location of Fort Point Theatre Channel also had a big influence on this music.  It’s large and open concrete, brick and wooden room generated bright and harsh sounds.  That, coupled with trucks loudly rumbling down the street made a magic mixture for The Music Of Indiscreet Discretion.

Originally performed as duets with Kirsten Lamb (Upright Bass), Kathy Olson (Baritone Sax) and Tony Leva (Upright Bass), I recorded The Music Of ID with Kirsten & Kathy in the spring of 2013 with Ariel Bernstein.  On Sunday, November 24th we performed the full suite as quartet – with Tony joining us again on bass.

I feel very grateful to have composed and recorded this music.  These are sounds that I was challenged to make and now are part of my language.  Thank you to Fort Point Theatre Channel & Silvia Graziano for the opportunity.

Schooltree (2013)


Lainey’s primary instrument, the keyboards, provide a solid framework for her bandmates.  The consistently excellent Brendan Burns (guitar), Derek Van Wormer (bass) and Jordan Ross (drums) deploy their dexterity. Elegant, whimsical piano flurries embellish the album’s nine songs, complementing Lainey’s assertive yet emotional singing, and contrasting with the bite of the guitar riffs, while a judicious use of the harmonizer adds layers of airy vocal harmonies that fit the music to a T. – Prog Archives

More scrumptious music by Lainey Schooltree that firmly nails her and her new band like a story house into a sprawling castle. ‘Rise’ is officially Schooltree’s debut but Lainey put out a solo called “My Metal Mother” ( see my review last year ) which I raved about. In fact a couple of songs off that private solo are redone on this one (‘Foreverish’ and ‘After You’re Gone’). It’s wonderful to hear them with full band and slight mods. This one is just as stunning and on the nine tunes, has a full band consisting of Jordan Ross on drums, Brendan Burns on guitar, and Derek Van Wormer on bass. Lainey does all the vocals and piano.

I still give strong references to Kate Bush, Happy Rhodes, Jane Siberry, and add Amy Neuberg and the classic Laura Nyro. All in all, Lainey has her own stamp and an incredible sense of all aspects of music, from basic structure to finished master. Her arrangement skills are regal. Her composition smarts are sorely beautiful. Schooltree move from art pop to symphonic rock, to haunting ballad to unforgettable music all over. This is totally impressive and much of the time jaw dropping….

There’s not much left to say about how great this disc is. I could empty the dictionary of adjectives but just one listen and that’s all you need. Lainey Schooltree is a remarkable artist and her perfection is your reward. This is surely one of the best recordings of 2013 on my list. Totally and highly recommended!!! – Prognaut.com

TimeStamp (2012)


On the third week of February 2012 I asked fifteen musicians who I love & trust dearly to join me for an experiment at the Somerville Theatre. Over the course of three days, I presented new music to six different ensembles (ranging from solo guitar, to guitar duet, to string trio, to rock band with a horn section) and asked everyone to contribute their musicianship & creativity to each tune.  Together we explored seven compositions and three hours of free improvisation in a beautiful sounding theatre.  The result has been captured on two albums that span the genres of alt-country, post-rock and the ethereal.  This collection is our photograph.  It is our TimeStamp.

TimeStamp is available on BandCampSpotifySoundCloudiTunes, & CDBaby.

TimeStamp Vol II (2012)


TimeStamp Vol II is available via BandCamp and features uncut/unedited free improvisations by Valerie Thompson, Raky Sastri, Brendan Burns & Tony Leva.