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Tender, creative and beautiful are just some of the adjectives that describe Spirit Touch, the third solo album from Joseph Akins, which continues his heartfelt piano artistry with eleven fresh tracks: ten new originals and one modern arrangement of on old classic. Joseph s performance on a Steinway D grand is featured throughout this album with intimate piano solos for several tracks and accompaniment from cello and percussion on others. Spirit Touch will surely touch the spirit of any listener.

All tracks were recorded at the beautiful Middle Tennessee State University recording studios. Both Joseph Akins and the engineer, Bill Crabtree, are professors in the Department of Recording Industry in the College of Mass Communication at MTSU. The world-class facilities of these studios can be heard throughout the high quality sound from this album.

Description from the artist:

Spirit Touch is the follow-up to my solo piano album, Masterpeace. Released in 2007, Masterpeace has been recognized as a soothing and relaxing instrumental album that sounds wonderful. In 2009, Spirit Touch still features the beauty and heart of the grand piano. Many of the tracks are solo piano yet other selected tracks have cello and percussion accompaniment. All tracks are originals with the exception of track 11, which is my arrangement of the popular Tennessee Waltz. It is my hope that Spirit Touch touches your spirit.

1. Spirit Prelude This is an uplifting improvisation that makes for a spirited opener and a great prelude for the title track.

2. Spirit Touch I first knew the title of this album would include the word touch , thinking of human touch and how important it is to us all. I later decided to include the word spirit feeling that spirit touch well represented the music as a whole. I composed this particular piece while we were grieving over the loss of our 23-year-old Siamese kitty.

3. The Butterfly Ride Influenced by one of my favorite jazz composers, Horace Silver, this tune has always sounded like a ride to me. First, I imagined a balloon ride, but by the time I recorded this album, it sounded more like a butterfly ride!

4. Cascades I wrote this piece after the recording sessions for Masterpeace, my previous solo album. Because it sounded like falling water, the title came from one of my favorite places in nature, Cane Creek Cascades.

5. Night Shadows This haunting piano solo is a favorite to play. Thanks to the legendary pianist David Lanz for his inspiration and input.

6. Feeling Joy This one is pure fun. The continuous motion and strong melody is joyful to play and hear. I hope you feel joy too.

7. Little Arwen This simple solo dropped into my heart early one morning. I named it after one of our newly adopted Siamese kittens. Her two brothers, Aragorn and Gandalf, will have a more adventurous piece named after them some day!

8. Dance for my Ancestors This exciting piece grew out of the melody you hear in the first few measures. I wanted to compose a number that would be fun to perform live. It makes my heart jump and my fingers dance!

9. 1,001 Nights Influenced by artists such as Kitaro, I wanted to compose a track based on this Middle-Eastern sounding scale: G-Ab-B-C-D-Eb-F. I also had fun scraping my fingernails across the piano strings (the single strum that sounds similar to an autoharp).

10. My Rainbow This music was completely improvised in the recording studio. It is dedicated to my beloved wife, Unita.

11. Tennessee Waltz My father, a musician who loved and played country music, taught me this very popular song when I was a child. With his guitar, he taught me one note at a time until I learned the complete melody.

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Label:  HeartSong Music
ArtistJoseph Akins
Release Date:  October 6, 2009
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More Spirit Touch: Solo Piano reviews
review by . November 01, 2009
posted in Music Matters
"Spirit Touch" is the anxiously-awaited follow-up to Joseph Akins' very popular and critically-acclaimed 2007 release "Masterpeace." As much as I enjoy "Masterpeace," "Spirit Touch" blows me away. Akins wanted his new album to be more like his live performances, and that seems to be the difference. There is more variety in the music and Akins clearly demonstrates what an incredible pianist he is. A musician since childhood, he has the effortless grace of someone who has played the piano all of his …
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Spirit Touch: Solo Piano
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