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A week ago today

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Dayna Stephens, one of the most interesting and musical saxophonists of his generation, stars in "A Week Ago Today", the second release of record label Prophone Finnish Jazz, seeing its international debut on February 23rd, 2011. Andrei Sumelius, George Kontrafouris and Teemu Viinikainen round out the cast on this brilliant new release.

A Week Ago Today came about as visioned by drummer and producer, Andrι Sumelius, who befriended Dayna Stephens while doing concerts and recordings together, and while working as musicians together in San Francisco, California and later on, in New York City. "I always thought it would be great to be able to bring Dayna to Finland someday to perform, he just simply lives and breathes music, whether playing the saxophone or bass; really just an amazing musician. When I finally got him to Helsinki, it was absolutely imperative to make a recording!", Andrι recalls.

Sumelius also wanted guitarist Teemu Viinikainen on the recording, a musician Andrι has worked with since he appeared on Sumelius' first recording. "I value Teemu's musically creative instincts, sense of swing and his fearlessness as a musician". Sumelius paired him up with the renowned Greek organist, George Kontrafouris, with whom Sumelius had performed with, even as far from home as Tokyo. "Kontrafouris was a great choice, bringing swing, soulfulness and even more momentum to the music. To quote him: 'The organ is not an instrument, it's a groove machine!'". One of Finland's more internationally known musicians, Mikko Innanen also makes a guest appearance on one track on the album.

Dayna Stephens' melodic compositions make up the majority of the music on "A Week Ago Today", but a few of Sumelius' compositions and one from Kontrafouris round out the production. Sumelius feels that all composers share the goal of composing songs that can be told as stories, retaining cohesion, and grab the interest of the listener.


Dayna Stephens, tenor saxophone
Andrι Sumelius, drums
George Kontrafouris, Hammond organ
Teemu Viinikainen, electric guitar

1. Paterson Falls (Stephens)
2. The Ritual and the Blues (Kontrafouris)
3. Our World (Stephens)
4. The Wong Song (Stephens)
5. Pacific Coast Highway (Sumelius)
6. Dah Dot Dah (Stephens)
7. Village Nights (Sumelius)
8. A Week Ago Today (Stephens) 


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Last modified on Sunday, 21 September 2014 17:43