Jim Van Slyke
As you celebrate Independence Day, I can't help but segue into my latest review about an artist as explosive as the fireworks on the 4th of July. . .
by our Music Guru Maureen ("Mo") Mahoney
A man I am honored to call my friend.........
Fate plays such an important role in our lives, and I truly believe that is what led me to the ever talented Jim Van Slyke. A man whose voice I found quite by accident and I will always be grateful I did!
Jim's Debut CD "Open Road" was nominated on the Cabaret Hotline Online in a competition where we, the members, were asked to vote for the BEST CD. I found myself coming back to Jim's CD more than once and after hearing his voice, I knew it was time to explore the artist in depth.
Jim's Debut CD is a remarkable and exceptional first endeavor, and the origin of what he has in store for the future. I visited Jim's website and was not only impressed with his background, but found him to be one of the hardest working artists in the business. Intrigued I continued on my search....I wanted to learn more about this eloquent singer.
After hearing the title track "Open Road"
a whole new world opened up for me. This song holds
special meaning for everyone who hears it. We can all
listen to these lyrics and apply them to a moment in our
lives, part of our own private journey and come away
feeling exhilarated, renewed and refreshed. I absolutely
adore this song, and then to find out Jim not only sings
this with such a deep passion, it is very near and dear
to his heart as well....he wrote the song! With "Open
Road", Jim embarked on a quest to create an album to
entice you, the listener into hours of enjoyment. This
album has become a cherished favorite by all his fans.
"This is what we have been waiting for, and we couldn't ask for more!"
Let me mention the accolades which have surfaced upon the release of "Open Road"....
"Open Road", was named as "Best Pop Vocal Album" for the 2006 Grammy Nominee Ballot, the Album was recently nominated as "Recording of the Year" by MAC (Manhattan Association of Cabarets). Truly one of the proudest moments of Jim's career was when the song "Open Road" was chosen as a WINNER in the ASCAP Mid Atlantic Songwriters Showcase, at The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. With his enormous talent and vocal capability, Jim was also chosen to headline a benefit here in Naples, "Fly Me To The Moondance", the 5th Annual Gala to benefit the Cancer Alliance of Naples. This was such a momentous evening for Jim and his performance was embraced and welcomed with applause and "Bravo's". Not bad for a Debut CD!
Along with "Open Road", Jim has given us such beautiful tracks as "Sailing", "Summer Breeze", "Moondance", "Kiss Me In The Rain", "Nights on Broadway", "In The Darkest Place", "I Don't Know How To Love You Anymore", "When The Bartender Cries", "Leavin' In The Morning" and "I'd Rather Leave While I'm In Love".
This CD shows an amazing range in Jim's voice, stunning to hear and song choices you will find yourself playing many times over. It is clearly evident how Jim's vocal training has moved him to the forefront, and he is still climbing at record speed... "no pun intended".
After Jim was signed to the prestigious LML Label, www.lmlmusic.com, I knew this would be the catalyst for a long and rewarding career for Jim. I was honored to be in attendance to show my support at his re-release concert in NY at "Don't Tell Mama's" and how special for Jim so many fans and friends came to show their support.
Little did the patrons know we were honored to have in the audience this special evening the Founder of LML Music and Award Winning Recording Artist, the incomparable Lee Lessack. Anyone with a close attachment and/or friendship to Jim was there to witness his exceptional and unique talent once more.
Jim enchanted us with songs from the album and added to his program some delightful theater medleys and broadway tunes, "Orange Colored Sky, "Dearly Beloved", "Keep on Singing the Good Songs", "A Nightingale Sang In Berkley Square". He then dedicated to his lovely wife Dana "That Smile", which was a beautiful tribute to the love of his life. However, for me, when he introduced "Flight" I saw in Jim a new level of greatness. The range and power he sang with had all of us mesmerized, and in those few minutes, Jim Van Slyke proved once again, "He encapsulated one of the most beautiful voices in cabaret ever heard!". The applause was deafening and very well deserved.
Jim Van Slyke has a deep passion for
singing and he brings it to every performance. To find
out more about this artist, I suggest you visit his
www.jimvanslyke.com. Jim's Debut CD is available for
purchase on his site and you can also find it at
Remember on this 4th of July, we are all here to celebrate the freedom that lives and grows in all of us. Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Rights, and Freedom of Song. Isn't it lovely to have an artist such as Jim bring out all the good inside of you? This CD will definitely produce a welcome smile on your face and lift your spirits as high as any light show this Independence Day!
As I end my review, there is a song Jim performs which sums up my feelings of devotion for him. So to you Jim, always remember "I Believe in You". As the fireworks light up the evening sky on this holiday, remember that you as well, brighten the world with your gift of song!
This is my Mo-ment of Music I happily share with you.
All the Best,
About Our Music Editor:
Maureen "Mo" Mahoney makes her home in Montgomery Village and spends her free time travelling to NY, Boston, Chicago, and countless other cities to support these amazing artists. She has been published in the "New England Entertainment Digest", as well as "The American Songbook in London" where she has joined Jeff Harnar's creative team.
Mo has also ventured into a new business rightfully named "Artistry in MO-tion" and is working with venues to bring these artists to Performing Arts Centers on the East Coast. Mo will also be involved in the promotional aspect of the D.C. Cabaret Network, hoping to showcase these artists and many others.
Mo has been interviewed for magazines in Naples about her love of this music and the various artists she supports and works so tirelessly for, a true labor of love. We are so lucky and fortunate to have her as a part of the Savvy Women family and look forward to many Mo rewarding and enlightening reviews.