Now Playing

Keep up to date

Join the email list!

 

_

THE 'OFFICIAL' BIO FOR THE ROOFTOP: The ROOFTOP is an all-star band fronted by some of the biggest names on the NYC Soul scene. With a focus on songwriting, the sound is a unique blend of modern soul, jazz, blues, gospel, and acoustic world music. The songs feature intelligent lyrics about life, with melodies floating above stylized chords and rhythms. The end result is a fresh sound with raw grit that defies expectations. It's not that synthetic soul sound from the corporate music world, it's REAL. The group was originally born out of artist collectives like The Lobby and Westside Rhyme (not to mention a couple of jam session parties thrown on various rooftops). Crowds of NYC hipsters would come to hear cutting edge original music and spoken word. With no rules to bound the performances, guitarist/composer CVH (Christian Ver Halen) saw this as a perfect setting to work with some of his favorite vocalists, MCs, poets, and musicians. After several shows a ROOFTOP performance was finally recorded for the world to hear. The result is the CD titled ‘A Live Shot’. It features a literal “who’s who” of the NYC Indie-Soul scene. The band members all lead their own projects and they each bring something unique to the music. They have all recorded and/or toured with some of the biggest names in the world: soul legends Stevie Wonder & Roberta Flack, hip-hop artists Common & Talib Kweli, jazz greats Wynton Marsalis & Cassandra Wilson, and African superstar Angelique Kidjo are just a few. Check the "News & Videos" section for a listing of the musicians on the CD. The CD ‘A Live Shot’ is a benefit for Music Rising, which is part of the Grammy Awards' Musicares program. This non-profit organization brings aid to musicians affected by Hurricane Katrina. Pick it up, save a life.

Christian Ver Halen (CVH)

THE 'WHATEVER' BIO FOR ME: A few years ago I started writing and performing with Maya Azucena. She’s flat out amazing. We wrote some tunes, started playing gigs, people dug it (thank you!!), we worked our asses off, and now she's one of the few independent artists known worldwide. Through the years I’ve also gotten to work with so many other great musicians and vocalists including Kendra Ross, Abby Dobson, and way too many more to list here. Maya's last CD was "Junkyard Jewel". It's an all-acoustic soul album. Beautiful and raw. Just voice, acoustic guitar, and percussion, plus cello and violin on a few tracks. I co-wrote almost all of the songs with Maya, wrote the string arrangements, and also co-produced the cd. Check out the sneak previews on the music page. Kendra's CD "New Voice" is really a stunning debut cd. I produced the CD, played guitar, co-wrote half of the songs, blah blah blah. There's so much more to it than what you can hear with the song samples. It's worth it to get the whole CD and keep it. It features guest spots by legendary MC Talib Kweli and soul singer Eric Roberson, among others. It helped her to win Best New Artist at the prestigious SoulTracks Awards in Detroit. One more thing that’s always been crucial to me is giving to others who are less fortunate. And I’m lucky enough to work with people who share this quality. We frequently perform at fundraisers and benefit shows for those who are struggling, whether its afflicted children, breast cancer survivors, 9/11 relief, Darfur rallies, etc. We’ve even done some shows at prisons – Johnny Cash style – which have been truly amazing experiences.