ERIC ROBERTS is an accomplished guitarist and bassist as well as composer, and has been playing professionally since the age of 16. He holds a B.A. in Music from Ithaca College and a Master’s in Music from the University of Miami. He has enjoyed a successful career playing in Broadway shows, backing up name entertainers, performing solo guitar concerts, giving music workshops, and providing music for every type of occasion. His repertoire ranges from classical to jazz, smooth jazz to brazilian, and nuevo flamenco to new age. He works as a solo performer with tracks, as a guitar duo and with a quartet.
His debut CD, “IN A SILENT PLACE”, featuring world renowned cellist, David Darling, has been receiving accolades the world over. The track “Flowing” became a finalist in the “new age” category of the 2009 Independent Music Awards, and the track “Cella’s Song”, written for his wife, won the "Outstanding Achievement in Songwriting Award" in the "instrumental" category of the 2008 Great American Song Contest. It also won first place in the “instrumental” category of the 2007 USA Songwriting Competition. His music can currently be heard on XM and Sirius Radio as well as Comcast’s “Music Choice” channel on their “Soundscapes” program.
His new EP, “MY BRAZILIAN HEART”, features many of his smooth jazz and brazilian compositions, including “Children’s Song”, which won first place in the “instrumental” category of the 2010 Great American Song Contest.
In addition, his music has been licensed via Pump Audio to HBO, A&E, and other cable channels.
New Age Tracks:
Eric Roberts - Guitar, Bass, Guitar Synthesizer
Robert Weinstein - Guitar
David Darling - Cello
Ed Contreras - Percussion
Brazilian/Smooth Jazz Tracks:
Eric Roberts- Guitar
Paul Avgerinos - Bass
Nick Bariluk - Keyboard
Bill Harris - Woodwinds
Barbara Merjan - Drums & Percussion
"IN A SILENT PLACE" CD
"MY BRAZILIAN HEART" EP
All tracks have streaming and radio airplay.
Zone Music Reporter.com
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My Brazilian Heart Heading in a different direction than the introspective and more tone-poem...My Brazilian Heart
Heading in a different direction than the introspective and more tone-poem approach that he displayed on 2001's In a Silent Place, acoustic guitarist Eric Roberts sets sail for the soft ocean breezes and sun-soaked beaches of Brazil (as interpreted through the moods and motifs of accessible smooth jazz) on My Brazilian Heart. The six-song EP does indeed contain some Spanish musical influences, notably the sensual Latin rhythms of "Flying Free" and the sexy Spanish flavors of "Swiss Samba," but the majority of this CD is resplendent with the best elements of smooth jazz with literally none of the vapidity or shallowness that sometimes creeps into the genre. Putting it succinctly, this is a killer EP of both mellow and cookin' jazz licks played by Roberts and his guest artists.
Those guests are well-known ambient artist Paul Avgerinos, here contributing on funky soulful bass, Nick Bariluk on keyboards, noted woodwind player Bill Harris and drummer/percussionist Barbara Merjan. Everyone involved plays with finesse, style, and gusto (when it's called for). It's hard to believe these cats haven't been jamming for a long time, to be honest, as their musical chemistry and sense of simpatico is self-evident from the first listen.
One of the comparisons I kept coming up with as I listened to this excellent CD was to Chick Corea's early incarnation of Return to Forever, circa Light as a Feather, because both recordings share a joyous exuberance mated to a refined musicianship and a carefree playfulness as well. My Brazilian Heart is a hugely entertaining recording and I never tired of it over many playings before writing this review.
Brazilian Morning starts things off in a spirited manner with a nice piano intro spiraling into Roberts' guitar side-by-side with Harris' flute. Lively but not overly so, the song sounds like a picture-perfect sunrise! Gentle Breezes captures the titular reference with a midtempo rhythm and perfect amalgam of assorted musical elements—Avgerinos' bass, Merjan's trap kit drums, Bariluk's keyboards and Roberts' guitar. Flying Free sizzles with tropical heat tempered by jazzy undertones and the resultant blend produces just enough fire to get your fingers snapping and toes tapping but is counterbalanced with a giddy effervescence to lighten the mood. Brazilian Nights is, paradoxically, the most "American," i.e. urban, cut on the EP, with sexy sax and vibrant piano supported by the solid rhythm section as well as adroit soloing by Roberts.
I've often written of my belief in the adage "quality over quantity" in reference to EPs, and Eric Roberts' My Brazilian Heart is another example of the veracity of the phrase. I certainly wouldn't have minded more of the same on this recording, but if these six dynamite tracks are what the musicians settled on as being their best efforts, well, that's more than good enough for me. If all smooth jazz recordings were this good, the genre would never have gone out of fashion. Who knows, maybe Roberts and company can even breathe new life into it? Highly recommended!
Music Web Express (mwe3.com)
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It’s not often that guitarist Eric Roberts makes a new CD but when he does it’s clearly worth a list...It’s not often that guitarist Eric Roberts makes a new CD but when he does it’s clearly worth a listen. Back in 2005 Roberts released his CD debut, a fine instrumental showcase for his guitar skills called In A Silent Place. Now in 2009 the Colorado based guitarist follows up with a newly recorded 6 track CD (EP) entitled My Brazilian Heart. Everything about this new CD release speaks quality—from the studio recording sound down to the eye-catching cover artwork. Whereas In A Silent Place found Roberts in the studio recording a stellar mix of jazzy and reflective yet upbeat New Age guitar instrumentals, with My Brazilian Heart he also sounds influenced by the tropical sounds of Brazil combined with smooth jazz. Roberts recorded In A Silent Place in the studio with former Paul Winter Consort cellist David Darling and fittingly, Roberts lists a number of players among his chief influences including Paul Winter guitarist Ralph Towner, as well huge Brazilian music legends like Charlie Byrd and Baden Powell. In addition to the comparison with the early Paul Winter Consort sound, there’s also a neoclassical jazz music sound in the mix with a sublime Jean Pierre Rampal meets Earl Klugh vibe in play on My Brazilian Heart, often mixing within the same track! If there’s one minor aside here it’s that the disc only contains six tracks but the music is so good you’ll find yourself reaching for the replay button to hear it again more than once. If enough people get to hear it, I’m sure Roberts will consider a volume two in the future. A number of players appear backing up Roberts on these six guitar masterpieces including Paul Avgerinos (bass), Bill Harris (woodwinds), Nick Bariluk (keyboards) and Barbara Merjan. My Brazilian Heart makes a fine spin for jazz and Brazilian music lovers that can also serve a (drums/percussion). Easy on the ears, uplifting guitar based instrumentals, My Brazilian Heart makes a fine spin for jazz and Brazilian music lovers that can also serve as a cinematic and reflective musical backdrop for your weary ears.
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Eric Roberts is a prolific guitarist with an impressive career as sideman. He has been backing up fa...Eric Roberts is a prolific guitarist with an impressive career as sideman. He has been backing up famous entertainers such as Chuck Berry, The Fifth Dimension, The Drifters, Bob Hope, Joan Rivers, Anthony Newley, Maureen McGovern, and the Smothers Brothers. He also performed in several Broadway shows.
On his albums he is addicted to Brazilian music. Known by this artist are In A Silent Place (2001) and My Brazilian Heart (2009). He is accompanied on this sophomore project by Paul Avgerinos (bass), Nick Bariluk (keyboards), Bill Harris (woodwind), and Barbara Merjan (drums, percussion).
On the lovely ballade Brazilian Morning Eric reveals his passion for natural beauty and smooth melodies. Mellow piano tones, Bill's flute and Eric's acoustic guitar are the right set to complete this mission.
Flowing like Gentle Breezes Eric Roberts' temperate guitar chords warm up heart and soul. With the energetic Bossa Nova Flying Free Eric demonstrates his skills in Latin guitar music. This up-tempo tune with a hooky melody is my personal favorite.
The swinging waltz Children's Song features Nick Bariluk's piano play of elegance and grandeur. Bill's flute and Eric's guitar follow in an awe-inspiring duet. The Latin-flavored Brazilian Nights opens the dream chamber for Bill Harris on sax.
My Brazilian Heart's spirit shines on Swiss Samba, the easy going finale of the album. This track enthuses many guitarists worldwide and maybe it could be soon a guitar standard. The song is Eric' tribute to his stay in Switzerland. He comments: " I was living in Geneva, Switzerland where there was a small Brazilian music community and a great Brazilian club that I used to hang out and play at. Living in Geneva was a wonderful (but expensive) experience and I truly loved the appreciation of music & art that was so prevalent there, as well as the spectacular scenery, too!"
Eric Roberts' album My Brazilian Heart is exactly that, what the title promises. Fine compositions for all lovers of good Brazilian music.
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I know what you're thinking..... You're saying to yourself, "With that album cover, I like it... I know what you're thinking..... You're saying to yourself, "With that album cover, I like it already!"
That was the feeling I got when I laid my eyes upon the My Brazilian Heart (EP) from accomplished guitarist Eric Roberts. Without ever hearing Roberts play, and judging from the title of the CD, I imagined this to have a Latin flavor or flamenco style. I was quite surprised to find that this was more of a smooth jazz effort that sprinkled a slight Latin style over bits of these well-crafted songs.
The CD opens up with a track called "Brazilian Morning," and it is a soft and somewhat somber sounding composition very reminiscent of Bob James' "Angela." Many of you know "Angela" as the theme song to the hit TV show "Taxi," I know it as one of my favorite instrumental songs of all time. "Brazilian Morning" is done with the same class and artistry, while it creates much the same mood that "Angela" created for James. We hear some of Roberts' most nimble fret work on tracks like "Flying Free" and "Swiss Samba," where his acoustic guitar mastery takes center stage. But maybe the most exciting thing about this CD is the way he plays with his band.
Eric Roberts is a guitar player that has played with the likes of Chuck Berry, Maureen McGovern, Peter Noone, and Cab Calloway. Everyone that plays on this record gives an excellent performance and has an impressive and extensive resume. One of the most impressive jewels in this treasure chest of artists is woodwinds player Bill Harris. Harris has performed with Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan, Patti LaBelle, The Brecker Brothers, and more. He is a major contributor on each of these songs. From the flute sounds of "Brazilian Morning" and "Children's Song," to the horn pieces that passionately play through "Gentle Breezes" and "Brazilian Nights," Bill Harris is clearly the right guy for the job. Another gem is keyboard player Nick Bariluck. With piano playing that compliments Roberts guitar perfectly, Bariluck proves to be essential to the overall sound of this CD. And maybe the most overlooked element of this grouping is drummer Barbara Merjan. Her subtle snare tapping and her highly intricate and complex cymbal work make her a quiet, but bright shining star that hangs over this smooth jazz excursion.
Now that I'm familiar with Eric Roberts brand of smooth jazz, I go back to the cover art once more. This is a 6-pack of songs that represents the cover art better than any album I've ever had the pleasure to look upon. Roberts and his crew make this cover come to life, and as a resident of the Chicago area soon to be bearing the weight of another brutal winter, this is a CD package that is going to be getting a lot of attention.
Once again, I would especially like to thank my good friend and "patient" Robert at Music Web Express 3000 for connecting me with great music.
You can check out tons of reviews, interviews and more at the excellent www.mwe3.com website.
The Sounding Board
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Eric Roberts' new album entitled IN A SILENT PLACE is escape music, pure and simple. These are warm...Eric Roberts' new album entitled IN A SILENT PLACE is escape music, pure and simple. These are warm, reflective movements blended with smooth jazz elements that make up this fascinating New Age and contemporary instrumental CD. Roberts' music gently flows like a cool Colorado stream that empties into a tiny pool in the back of your mind. You can think, drift and dream as Roberts' guitar lulls you into a world that you create. Call it facilitating music. Joining Eric on several tracks are avant-garde cellist DAVID DARLING (album Cello Blue, one of my all-time favorties), ROBERT WEINSTEIN on guitar and ED CONTRERAS on percussion. This small ensemble puts out some grand music.
Like the simple picture on the album cover, a guitar on a chair with artwork reminiscent of Monet's Water Lilies, Eric recalls in music his carefree days in Europe. It was time he took to reflect and create. And like a Monet painting, this album of thirteen placid tracks is his creation that has come to life in brilliant music.
IN A SILENT PLACE, the title track, meanders from the speakers like a brook through the deep forest. Dragon flies buzz about as the sun warms your skin and the only sound is the music, your breathing and the breeze through the aspens. Even clouds are shy on a day like this.
Like browsing through old, sepia photographs and then color pictures, the tune JOURNEY THROUGH TIME is a passage from one era into another. The graceful music, featuring Darling's moody cello, travels along an invisible track like a quiet train. Your traveling companions are Eric's light guitar licks and Contreras' pitter patter percussion. It is one of my favorite cuts.
THE RIVER RUNS, a finalist at the Independent Music Awards, is an award winning song that reprsents a good example of Roberts' talent as a performer as well as a songwriter. WIth a Bossa Nova beat and Darling's sometimes eerie cello, Roberts follows the course of a river as it snakes thorugh forest, field, and mountain pass. As in life there are calm, gentle stretches and there is white water. And, as in life, all rivers eventually reach to the sea, evaporate into the clouds and fall like blessed rain. This is the best track on IN A SILENT PLACE.
With just his guitar and a snippet of synthesizer Roberts plays CELLA'S SONG, a tribute to his wife (who is also a talented musician). It is a sweet ballad that clearly says I love you in so many ways. Other noteworthy tracks are a series called REFLECTIONS I-II-III. More improvisational than standard songs, they are performed by Roberts in an impromptu manner. They are similar to tone poems, but a bit more melodic and relaxing.
To close the album, the engaging song LULLABY bids you goodnight and pleasant dreams. It features ROBERT WEINSTEIN on very mellow guitar. You can almost hear the strains of Rock-A-My-Baby snuggled inside the tune. It is a soothing piece that produces dreams a plenty.
ERIC ROBERTS took up the guitar as a teen. He holds music degrees from both Ithaca College and from the University of Miami. He plays bass and bandura as well as guitar and his fruitful career has allowed him to perform with greats such as Chuck Berry, The Drifters and Maureen McGovern. This new album with cello wizard DAVID DARLING is destined for recognition.
Roberts' relaxing music goes way beyond most murmuring "chill out" fare with virtuosity and variety. Eric - you can play for us any time.
The Critical Review
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"In A Silent Place" is an album that highlights intelligent yet warm guitar music with a "just right..."In A Silent Place" is an album that highlights intelligent yet warm guitar music with a "just right" amount of accompaniment. There's 13 nice tracks that cover lots of ground musically and emotively. Some songs have a classical - maybe Spanish styled - sense and others a more modern acoustic aura; a jazz touch is also evident in a few selections.
As far as influences, there's so many here, but clearly SEGOVIA, KOTTKE, and PAT METHENY stand out. In one or two places I thought of PHIL KEAGGEY and his older instrumental acoustic stuff. Add some Brazilian jazz and pop traces and and some world and maybe even New Age touches and you have a very enjoyable album.
Top cellist DAVID DARLING formerly of the PAUL WINTER CONSORT adds a unique and quality sound. Other musical support is there, but it enhances and doesn't try to overshadow the nice work of Mr. Roberts.
I especially liked the warm playing, the clean notes, and the sound of each string - enhancing note and chords. As I listened again and again, I became quite impressed and was drawn into the nice warm musical atmosphere. For lovers of acoustic guitar, this is a must. The instrumental tracks make perfect backgrounds for reading, meditating, relaxing, and even for classy entertaining. I really enjoyed this disk and highly recommend it.
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Stressed out? Feeling the pressure grab you? Here is the solution: kick back and put on "In A Sile...Stressed out? Feeling the pressure grab you? Here is the solution: kick back and put on "In A Silent Place" by Eric Roberts. You can't stay uptight listening to this. Even the names of the songs have that relaxing feeling to them - tunes such as "Flowing" and "Lullaby" hint at the mood of the music without giving it all away.
One thing you won't find here is your typical new age fare. Roberts describes his music as "jazzy, non-commerical new age," and that fits rather well. This CD won't put you to sleep, but it won't jar your nerves either.
Along with featured guest artist David Darling (cello) and musicians Robert Weinstein (guitar) and Ed Contreras (percussion), Roberts has a good thing going here. Some songs really do have a little bit of a jazzy feel without being too "poppy", and the musicians blend very well.
If you are looking for music to unwind to, but don't want just boring background tunes, check this CD out. I am crazy about cello, so I loved "Journey Through Time." An interesting musical arrangement - you almost never hear a "perky" sound come out of that instrument, but somehow they did just that.
This 13-track CD can take you from harried to happy by track five. I know - I tested it after a busy, busy day!
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"Eric Roberts plays guitar with a sincerity and emotive technique that rivals the finest players we'..."Eric Roberts plays guitar with a sincerity and emotive technique that rivals the finest players we've heard. He is one of those artists who is able to mix technical ability and place it both within a contemporary melodic setting as well as an airy experimental place that rides the thin edge of jazz and newage. His partnership with cellist, David Darling, is magical - the timbres of both instruments compliment each other perfectly as is witnessed in the long mp3 cut here, "The River Runs". Darling - as compatible a musician creatively as you can want when you compare both musicians' styles - offers chaotic and kinetic lines that travel fairly far away from the typical cellist style and phrasing. Darling's artistic statement, along side Robert's, is compelling and full of life."
"Roberts track "Cella's Song" is a melodic and beautiful - it will remind a few players of John Williams touch - especially Deer Hunter soundtrack familiars. "In a Silent Place" has Roberts composition modulating in jazz overtones. We hear Steve Morse like compositional chordal movements without the speed - probably purely unintentional. "Lullaby" brings us tones reminiscent of Hedges' Rickover fun (Rickover's Dream) - but more intimate and less affected. True to what appears to be Roberts' essence, the recordings are done with little reverb or effects - it's bare and beautiful. A touch of a chamber is all you'll hear - and it brings you up close to the performance. .complete with the human rhythm of Roberts' breath. Wonderful. Track 5 on the CD, "Snow" has Eric moving around with quick note flurries and harmonics. .that move into flowing arpeggios to the point that you can almost see the flakes falling from the sky. We love this CD - and Roberts' compassionate playing. Buy it."
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Mr. Roberts guitar works will definitely take you to a place where "silence is to be treasured". All...Mr. Roberts guitar works will definitely take you to a place where "silence is to be treasured". All originals, which makes it immediately apparent to the listener how talented Eric is... his spirit shines through each gentle acoustic guitar passage, & will transport you to regions of your soul you didn't even know existed. There is far more than just cliché guitar phrasing here, too... my favorite track is "Journey Through Time", which features Eric on Guitar & Guitar synth, as well as David Darling on Cello & midi-percussion... a timeless high-energy composition that will "take you there" - across the eons, to be sure. He also does some marvelous spontaneous improvs... both solo ("Reflections I through III") & accompanied ("A Stringy Dialogue") by Mr. Darling. Other players featured are Ed Contreras (percussion) & Robert Weinstein (guitar). If your body can't relax as your ears absorb this wonderfully relaxing music, you probably belong in a "ward" somewhere, getting "the cure"... on the other hand, this music probably can provide you with a cure, for all but the most aberrant souls, that is. I'm impressed enough to rate this one as MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
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A finalist in the Independent Music Awards, Eric Roberts is no stranger to award-winning music. Afte...A finalist in the Independent Music Awards, Eric Roberts is no stranger to award-winning music. After all, he also scored himself a #1 NAR National Radio Airplay Chart hit and surrounds himself with other talented musicians in cellist David Darling, Ed Contreras on percussion, and Robert Weinstein on guitar. His music is New Age guitar jazz with airy elements that breeze the mix into your ears with coaxing delight and subtle nuances that give it a definite chill-out feel. I haven't heard great finger-picking guitar work like this in quite a while.
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Many musicians and composers play and create because its their job. Eric Roberts, on the other hand,...Many musicians and composers play and create because its their job. Eric Roberts, on the other hand, does it from his heart. In his soothing debut album, In a Silent Place , we are treated to 56 minutes on 13 tracks of purely delightful, heartfelt music. Here is music that is, all at once, soft, clean, relaxing and uplifting.
Technically, Mr. Roberts' mastery of the guitar and bass is as good as it gets. Imagine, no clicks, no skids and no screech. As a matter of fact, don't imagine, listen for yourself. You will hear delightful, creative songs that are a journey to peace. When I listened, I thought of puffy clouds drifting across the sky, and lake water lapping on the shore. Each of the tracks (some played with noted cellist David Darling) will make you think of a cabin on a hillside overlooking a beautiful valley, with a fireplace and good book, feet up in a comfortable easy chair.
When you are trying to find yourself...when the clatter of daily life gets to be too much, you can drift to a place of well-being and peace. That's what In a Silent Place did for this reviewer. Here is music that smiles, perhaps the kind of music we'd expect to hear in heaven. Eric Roberts has given us an aural means to find peace!
The River Runs
Agua De Beber
Brigas Nunca Mais
Mas Que Nada
One Note Samba
Saudade Fez Um Samba
Girl from Ipanema
Once I Loved
Chega De Saudade
Watch What Happens
If You Never Come To Me
A Child is Born
Green Dolphin Street
I Love You
I Should Care
My Funny Valentine
My One and Only Love
Isn't It Romantic
My Foolish Heart
Some Other Time
Stella by Starlight
What Are You Doing The Rest of Your Life
Stompin' at the Savoy
In A Mellow Tone
I Love You
Sons de Carrilhoes
There are no upcoming dates at this time.