What Kind of Music is it?

Welcome! You’ve arrived at Striking Note’s first post about our first release, Camila Ballario’s Another Good Mistake. We are thrilled to introduce such a breathtaking new artist.

The first question everyone asks is “what kind of music is it?” Well, it’s a combination of things.

On Stage at Leon Loft

Camila Ballario

Most of us like to categorize music. It helps us organize our playlists/collections and find radio stations, streams, videos and live shows of interest. It helps us discover new artists we’re apt to enjoy. It points us in the right direction to connect with like-minded music lovers. It narrows things down in a world of seemingly endless choice.

The problem is that many great artists are great because they defy easy classification. They blur musical boundaries, blending melody, rhythms, instruments and lyrical themes from different genres. Often that’s what makes the music special. New yet familiar. Compelling yet accessible.

So, what kind of music is this? Americana? Acoustic Pop? Folk? Rock? Country? None of these quite captures the essence. We think of Another Good Mistake as New Americana Pop music. Familiar instruments assembled in unexpected ways. Perhaps you will come up with a better name. If you do, please send it our way.

Whatever the label, we hope you enjoy it. Learn more at camilaballario.com

Get a copy and get hooked!

Uber Musician Rich Rankin

A producer, musician, and engineer like no other. The pursuit of excellence personified. That’s Rich Rankin. His skilled hands, creative mind and big heart were deeply involved in crafting Another Good Mistake.

Rich is a Chicago-based writer, producer, engineer and multi-instrumentalist with an affinity for diverse genres.

Rich Rankin on Fender Jazz Bass

Rich Rankin

With over 25 years of experience, he’s produced, recorded and performed on three award winning albums for kindie artist Laura Doherty and for Charming Axe, Curious Grace, Linda Marie Smith, Linda Robertson, Gayle Bisesi, Crawford’s Daughter, Kym Franklin and for labels Old Town School Recordings and Rimjhim Records.

Rich has scored and produced ad music and indie film work through his own Mosaic Music. He’s a songwriter as well in the genres of roots, rock, blues and soul, and has songs and scores placed in films The Legend of Bloody Mary (Lionsgate), Carpe Diem (indie), and If I Only Knew (indie).

Rich works mostly in his project studio but also performs live with other artists and bands.

Rich on Mandolin

Rich on Mandolin

His work on Camila Ballario’s album is exemplary and we’re grateful for his invaluable contribution as co-producer, instrumentalist, engineer, mixer and friend.

Find out more at richrankinmusic.com.

Soulful Accordion by Jeff Tayor

You’ll hear Jeff Taylor’s fine accordion work on Another Good Mistake. There’s good reason why it’s so fine.

A native of Batavia, New York, Jeff began playing accordion and keyboards in his father’s band at the young age of ten. He later went to the Eastman School of Music to study classical piano. He led a jazz/rock band while in the Air Force in Ohio. In 1990 he moved to Nashville where his music career expanded to leader/keyboard player/conductor/arranger/producer/ multi instrumentalist on numerous theatre productions, live shows, and recording sessions. Jeff served as bandleader for fourteen years at Opryland and the General Jackson Showboat. His accomplishments don’t end there.

Jeff Taylor on Accordion

Jeff Taylor on Accordion

Jeff is a veteran member of the four-time Grammy nominated Time Jumpers. His list of recording and live-performance credits is exhaustive: Amy Grant, George Strait, The Chieftains, Elvis Costello, Paul Simon, Boz Scaggs, Charlie Peacock, Harry Connick Jr.,Edie Brickell, Kenny Chesney, Martina McBride, John McCutcheon, Asleep At The Wheel, Neal McCoy, The Civil Wars, Miranda Lambert, The Gaither Vocal Band, Point of Grace, Kenny Rogers, Willie Nelson, Allison Krauss, Buddy Greene, Keith and Kristyn Getty, Grandpa Jones, George Lindsey, Davd Phelps, Vince Gill, and Ricky Skaggs. He played on the Ricky Skagg’s and Kentucky Thunder Instrumental CD that won a Grammy for Best Bluegrass Album in 2007.

Check out his heartfelt playing on Waiting Too Long and Fall Real Hard Again.

Timekeeper Tom Hipskind

If you’re wondering who that great drummer is on Another Good Mistake, playing those beautiful Yamaha Absolutes, wonder no more. It’s Chicago based Tom Hipskind and he’s been keeping the beat for over 30 years. Tom studied jazz performance at Northern Illinois University, playing in the NIU Jazz Ensemble and accompanying many jazz legends. He went on to do graduate work at DePaul University. He’s a versatile timekeeper who, when introduced to a new song, almost immediately creates the perfect groove. It’s amazing to watch him in the studio.

Drummer Tom Hipskind

Drummer Tom Hipskind

His professional resume is extensive, having performed, recorded and toured with Howard Levy, Kenny Werner, Patricia Barber, Fred Simon, Kimo Williams’ Kimotion, Heather Headley, Gary Sinise’s Lt. Dan Band, John Elmquist’s HardArt Groop and many others. Tom’s studio chops are evident on many commercials, film soundtracks, and records. He also provides the beat for Broadway-style pit orchestras, having performed in “The Lion King”, “Shrek”, “Dirty Dancing”, “Annie” and “The Book Of Mormon”. Tom is an adjunct faculty member at Columbia College Chicago.

Among Tom’s current gigs: M13, a 13-piece jazz/fusion horn band led by Aaron McEvers and jazz/fusion group Kick the Cat. He can be heard on Scramble, their latest CD.

Tom plays on ten of twelve cuts on Camila Ballario’s Another Good Mistake. Learn more about his doings at tomhipskind.com/.

Dobro Master Rob Anderlik

You’ll catch some incredible dobro parts on Another Good Mistake. The dobro master is the one and only Rob Anderlik of Chicago.

Dobro Player

Rob Anderlik

Rob specializes in dobro and Weissenborn guitar. His style evokes steamy blues, hymnals, and bluegrass. Chicago has a well known blues tradition and Rob’s signature sound picks up on that heritage and uniquely melds the soulful emotion of blues with the vitality of bluegrass. It’s a great combination that will leave you wanting more.

Anderlik is an active member of the Chicago music scene and a frequent collaborator with players in a variety of musical genres. He can be found on the web at http://www.robanderlik.com

Check out his playing on Waiting Too Long and If Only for a Moment.

Trumpeter’s House Call

Greg Simon, D.M.A. Candidate

Greg Simon

We needed over-the-top trumpet on Red Jacket and some lonesome, melancholy parts on The Fix. University of Michigan Doctoral candidate Greg Simon made an unforgettable house call to Striking Note’s studio. Some players just feel it. He is one of them.

Greg is a composer and jazz trumpeter, raised on the West Coast and living outside Ann Arbor, MI. Greg has studied with Bill Lucas, Ellen Rowe, and Brad Goode. He’s performed with the Jodi-Renee Band, the Park Hill Brass, and ensembles at the University of Michigan and the University of Colorado. He also arranged music and performed for Bill Lucas’s album, “On the Fringe of Fire.” An album of his music for jazz musicians, “Virginia”, is in pre-production. When he’s not composing, Greg enjoys hockey, microbrews and short stories. Find out more at gregsimonmusic.com