Vincent Herring Performs on June 16 at the Athenaeum

| June 4, 2018 | 0 Comments

Vincent Herring will perform songs from “Hard Times” while he is in San Diego.

There’s no avoiding the hard times. Every human being that’s walked this earth has had his or her share of the blues, from the personal to the political, the local to the global.

Vincent Herring doesn’t have the answers to those issues any more than the rest of us. What he can offer is a tonic to help calm the turbulence of modern life, at least for an hour. With ‘Hard Times,” his third release for Smoke Sessions Records, the master saxophonist supplies the perfect musical response to our troubled existence–part escape, part defiance; part lament, part laughter. Over the course of these 11 songs, Herring and his stellar band both sing the blues and shake them off in ways both healing and infectious.

Though Herring was going through a rough patch in his personal life at the time of the recording, he had a much more wide-ranging vision in mind for “Hard Times.” “It’s the theme of the times that we’re going through,” he explained, pointing out that, at the time of this writing, the possibility of nuclear war suddenly seemed very possible thanks to the bluster of saber-rattling world leaders.

“The obvious red elephant in the room would be politics,” Herring continued. “So it’s hard times not necessarily just from my vantage point, but from looking at world events. At the same time, I do realize how blessed and fortunate I am to be living the life I’m living. I have a lot of real fans that support me and a lot of great people in my life; and, I have wonderful kids. This album will hit people in different ways, but I offer it as an uplifting piece for the hard times in the universe.”

The selection of repertoire for “Hard Times” came down to a single principle: these are quite simply songs that Herring has loved over the years and have seen him through his own hard times–and he hopes his renditions will do the same for listeners. “All through my life, whenever I’ve had ups and downs, music has been the one thing that’s always kept it positive for me,” he says. “It’s always been something that I could come back to and dig into to lift my spirits. This record is meant to be fun, it’s meant to be uplifting, it’s meant to be something that people will want to listen to over and over again.”

“Hard Times” was produced by Paul Stache and Damon Smith and recorded live in New York at Sear Sound’s Studio C on a Sear-Avalon custom console at 96KHz/24bit and mixed to ½” analog tape using a Studer mastering deck. It is available in audiophile HD format.

Herring will perform during the Athenaeum summer series. He will perform at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, June 16 with Dave Kikoski on piano, Yasushi Nakamura on bass, and Carl Allen on drums. The Athenaeum is located at 1008 Wall Street in La Jolla.

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