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LOVE & JAZZ IN THE TIME OF COVID - As Singer/Songwriter Jana Herzen & Bassist Charnett Moffett Build Toward the July Release of Their New Duo Album ‘Round The World, They Reveal Some Joyful News on Brian Zimmerman's Jazziz Last Call; Blue Note At
(Published: July 01, 2020)

For Immediate Release
June 30, 2020


As Singer/Songwriter Jana Herzen & Bassist Charnett Moffett
Build Toward the July Release of Their New Duo Album
‘Round The World, They Reveal Some Joyful News
on Brian Zimmerman's Jazziz Last Call

Blue Note At Home Live Streaming Album Release Event Set for July 3rd

"There's something special anytime that Jana Herzen and Charnett Moffett make music together. It's pure, soulful and especially beautiful to hear
now, maybe more than ever."  -AMERICAN SONGWRITER

National media continues to build for Jana Herzen and Charnett Moffett's acoustic duo album ‘Round the World, set for July 3rd (digital) and July 17th (physical) release on Herzen's Motéma label. In a livestreamed performance and interview with Brian Zimmerman on JAZZIZ Last Call, the duo discussed the project and also revealed the joyful news of their marriage just before the pandemic struck. Watch the full livestream, here:

"I'm very excited about this new album - it's got a great vibe - half singer/songwriter half straight-ahead jazz duo. "  Brian Zimmerman, JAZZIZ - "Last Call"

On July 3rd, Herzen and Moffett will perform on Blue Note At Home, a live streaming event to celebrate the release of their new album. Details here: https://www.facebook.com/events/928991810949652/

American Songwriter recently praised: "There's something special anytime that Jana Herzen and Charnett Moffett make music together. It's pure, soulful and especially beautiful to hear now, maybe more than ever.  She's a great singer-songwriter-guitarist who has championed countless other artists on the Motéma label. He's one of the finest jazz bassists playing today, having worked with a long list of legendary luminaries of jazz, including Herbie Hancock, Wynton Marsalis, McCoy Tyner, Ornette Coleman and Sonny Sharrock."  These warm words were the lead-in to American Songwriter's April 17th Exclusive Single Premiere of Herzen and Moffett's cover of ‘Killing Me Softly', from their upcoming acoustic duo album ‘Round the World. Read the in depth article by Paul Zollo, and listen to their cover of the beloved Roberta Flack song, here: https://bit.ly/2M1pOdH

On ‘Round the World, Herzen and Moffett marry innovation with nostalgia as they shape shift from folk to jazz to reggae to Afro-beat and beyond. With freshly imagined takes on classic 20th Century hits by Joni Mitchell, Men at Work, The Beatles, Roberta Flack, Maria Muldaur and Kermit the Frog, plus five strong originals by Herzen, ‘ROUND THE WORLD is quirky, smart, sophisticated, and sincere. The recording catches lightning in a bottle as these long-term creative partners charmingly finish each other's musical sentences on outstanding duo arrangements.. In these times of stress, isolation, fear and confusion, Herzen and Moffett offer a breath of fresh air, and a journey of understated joy and soulful communion, in a groove-solid yet dreamy aural landscape.  Read the initial press release on their Motema artist page: https://bit.ly/2M0v8xM .

Herzen comments "We are pleased to now get to celebrate Independence Day with the release of 'Round The World - our musical affirmation that we are not only citizens of America but also citizens of the world. Hopefully, one day soon, we will be free again to travel 'round the world, to share music and spread good cheer and healing vibes."   Moffett comments, "In a year when we have all had to socially distance, we really hope our music will help give people some uplifting feelings of love, honesty, spiritual sensitivity, and respect."

Just as the duo began releasing singles for Round the World, Shelter in Place orders were given, so they switched gears and began presenting a ‘Living Room Series', of live videos of their singles.  The series may be seen on Herzen's YouTube Channel. The most recent addition is their fresh take on Joni Mitchell's gem, ‘Both Sides Now', which they set to a swing/reggae/country groove. LINK: https://bit.ly/2ZIv8up .

Jazz N More Magazine (Switzerland) ran an expansive feature article about Jana Herzen in their May/June issue. The full article, translated to English, may be seen here: https://tinyurl.com/y8af8ywm

In France, Jazz at Six praised the album as "magnificent" in a new review, describing Moffett as "remarkable" and stating that Herzen evokes Laura Nyro and Joni Mitchell. Full review (in French): https://bit.ly/2ZHMBTK

Vents Magazine featured an Exclusive Premiere of ‘Both Sides Now', with preview column:
5/2020 by RJ Frometa: https://bit.ly/2yHv8Qk

The Record-Journal (Meriden CT) ran a favorable early review of ‘Round the World: by Jim Pasinski 4/2020  https://bit.ly/2B5q493
Acclaimed singer/songwriter/guitarist Jana Herzen has teamed up with world-renowned jazz bassist Charnett Moffett for a new album of covers and originals titled "Round The World." It features eleven tracks, beginning with the smooth, sultry, smoking jazz groove of "Sweetheart (Waitress In A Doughnut Shop)," before opening up to the sweet, light-hearted melody of Joni Mitchell's "Both Sides Now." The first original that appears on the album is "On The Outside," which allows Jana to pace the song with her stellar guitar work, supported by the steady bass work of Moffett. The duo try to jazz up the famous Beatles' ballad "Blackbird," before returning to more familiar ground with built-up excitement of Jana's original "Bali Dream." They finish of the album with the beautiful grace of "Part Of The Wild" and the emotional cover of the children's classic "Rainbow Connection."

JazzTimes and Jazziz exclusively premiered tracks:


More about Jana Herzen, Charnett Moffett and ‘Round the World:
Herzen, who has spent the past 16 years helming the award-winning and taste-making Motéma label which first recorded Gregory Porter, Joey Alexander and Pedrito Martinez to name a few, is experiencing a watershed moment for her own considerable musical talents. She began touring as a guitarist and guest vocalist in Moffett's band in 2017 and since then has recorded four projects including her all-original quintet release, Nothing But Love which dropped in January 2020, and has sparked enthusiastic press response and rising social media engagement.

"Herzen's rich past imbues her work with color and character." - People Magazine

Herzen has spent a lifetime in the arts. The child of activist scientists on the Stanford University Campus in California in the turbulent 1960's. She began performing at five, sang in coffee houses as a teenager, and worked extensively onstage and backstage in music and theater in her early professional life. In her thirties she travelled the world extensively and began writing and recording.  She has worked as an art agent, and as a Founder and key executive for two of New York's more influential arts companies: the MCC Theater (now in its fourth decade), and Motéma Music (now in its 16th year). Wisdom gained along this winding way shows up in her poetry and musicality as well as her confident and magnetic performance style.

As for Moffett, he brings his own forty plus years of arts experience to the table, along with an unusual abundance of talent, spirit and charisma. Considered one of the most virtuosic bassists in jazz, Moffett has honed his A-Team chops through four decades as a musician/composer during which he's recorded fifteen innovative albums of his own, and over two hundred albums as a bassist to the stars including such revered jazz titles as Wynton Marsalis' Black Codes for the Underground, McCoy Tyner's Land of the Giants, Ornette Coleman's Sound Museum, Herbie Hancock's Future to Future, and Sonny Sharrock's Ask the Ages.

When Herzen first signed Moffett to Motéma in 2008 they began forging an uncommon artistic bond has grown organically through years of producing, touring and recording together. Serving first as his Executive Producer, Herzen released two Moffett projects on Motéma before they released their first duo project, Passion of a Lonely Heart in 2012. Next Herzen stepped into the co-producing chair alongside the legendary Mary Ann Topper for Moffett's solo upright bass tour-de-force The Bridge (2013). She next produced Moffett's first-ever live recording, Music From Our Soul, featuring Pharaoh Sanders, Stanley Jordan, Cyrus Chestnut, Jeff ‘Tain' Watts, Victor Lewis, and Mike Clark (2017) which became one of Moffett's most successful albums.

Later that year, Moffett invited Herzen to fill the guitar chair for his live dates, which led to her recording with his quintet for his album, Bright New Day in 2018.  Herzen loved the sound that Moffett's band brought to her song ‘Precious Air' at those sessions so much that she decided to engage the same team for Nothing But Love. On the final mix day for Nothing But Love mix, Moffett initiated an impromptu instrumental duo side-project, Nett Duo, which recorded the digital album Overtones, which came out in December 2018, prefacing Moffett's Bright New Day (June 2019), and Herzen's Nothing But Love (January 2020).

 ‘Round the World, coming in July of 2020, represents both a new direction and a full circle return for the duo. The tracks for these eleven songs were laid down in early experimental sessions that that led to their duo debut in 2012. Of twenty-two tracks recorded back then, half were jazz focused, and showed up on Herzen's Passion of a Lonely Heart. The remnants, which had more of a singer/songwriter vibe, were saved for later release and now appear on this disc. The arrangements for the 1960, ‘70 & ‘80s hits that Herzen used to cover at folk clubs and coffeehouses, and for the five story-driven originals written along her path since then, reveal the deep musical camaraderie and artistic telepathy that seeded this unlikely duo's many fruitful collaborations. Next up is a trio and quartet album from Moffett that breaks new ground for him, release date to be announced soon. 

"The music doesn't lie," explains Moffett. "Jana's musical creativity is diverse. She is an artist with an original sound and style who always sings and plays from her heart. Her poetic lyrics and song writing embrace the listener with the compassion of truth. I've found that playing in a duo capacity allows the sound of the bass to have a voice of it's own. Our duo recordings and performances have all been exciting for me. I never know which style Jana will travel into next as each song finds a new journey every time the music is created." - Charnett Moffett

"Charnett's an undeniable master, not only of the bass, but of composition and melody and pure musicality. There's a language we're developing that has been gaining nuance through the years. I'm look forward seeing where it all goes and to recording, and touring more in the times to come." - Jana Herzen

Here's a new song Charnett Moffett wrote and sang, playing acoustic guitar. He was inspired by the exhilarating sound of San Franciscans cheering at 8pm for the doctors who are putting their lives on the line to save the people from the coronavirus.  ‘Doctors on the Front Lines':

On March 30th, the duo performed on Kabir Sehgal's Quarantine Concert Series (https://bit.ly/347htNL ) on Facebook to raise spirits and raise relief funds.

"Absolute Intimacy... Herzen and Moffett play it out perfectly," was the assessment of the duo's first project from Gary Walker of WBGO.

"Charnett Moffett is a Bass Wonderman" - Downbeat

"Herzen's clean guitar work [is] a confident dance partner for her sly vocal style"  -Downbeat

Motéma Music is an award-winning independent label founded in by Jana Herzen in San Francisco in 2003 and now based in Harlem in New York City. The label has garnered 24 GRAMMY ® nominations with five wins in the genres of jazz, Latin jazz, reggae and R&B. Motéma has launched recording careers for international stars Gregory Porter, Joey Alexander, Pedrito Martinez and Deva Mahal and supported a wide array of innovative jazz artists including Randy Weston, Monty Alexander, Geri Allen, David Murray, Donny McCaslin, Marc Guiliana, Ben Wendel, Melissa Aldana. The label has released the politically conscious projects: Playing for Change "Listen to the Music", Jaimeo Brown's Transcendence, Kentyah's "Evolutionary Minded (The Music of Brian Jackson & Gil Scott Heron) and the Terri Lyne Carrington & Social Science 2019 juggernaut, Waiting Game. Please visit Motéma.com to learn more.

Preorder/Stream ‘Round the World, here: https://janaherzen.lnk.to/RoundTheWorldPR

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