Isaiah Stewart | Thrill Ride

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Thrill Ride

by Isaiah Stewart

The urban fusion of Miles Davis; the funk groove of Jamiroquai; the metal-shredding of Joe Satriani; the jazz-rap of Kendrick Lamar; featuring jazz-rock guitarist Jamie Glaser (Jon Anderson (Yes), Chick Corea, Jean-Luc Ponty, Bryan Adams, Quincy Jones).
Genre: Jazz: Jazz Fusion
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Thrill Ride (Feat. Jamie Glaser)
7:22 $0.99
2. Drive
6:41 $0.99
3. Storm Chase (Feat. Jamie Glaser)
6:08 $0.99
4. Best I Ever Had
5:49 $0.99
5. Nasty Moves
8:04 $0.99
6. Red Devil Car (Feat. Jamie Glaser)
6:19 $0.99
7. Johnny Cool (Feat. Jamie Glaser)
6:53 $0.99
8. Beat the Drum
5:22 $0.99
9. Starships (Drum Solo)
3:13 $0.99
10. Neptune 5 (Feat. Jamie Glaser)
7:15 $0.99
11. Boiling Point
6:18 $0.99
12. Invaders
6:41 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
(Press Release)

Isaiah Stewart releases Thrill Ride, fourth studio album features Jamie Glaser, guitarist for Yes’ Jon Anderson, Jean-Luc Ponty, Chick Corea, Quincy Jones and Bryan Adams.

Tony Williams-inspired album explores new worlds in jazz, funk, rock, hip-hop and heavy metal.

SALT LAKE CITY, July 1, 2015 / PR Newswire – Jazz-rock drummer and worldwide recording artist Isaiah Stewart announces the release of his fourth album Thrill Ride.

Thrill Ride features Jamie Glaser, the world-renowned jazz-rock guitarist famous for his work with Jon Anderson (Yes), Jean-Luc Ponty, Chick Corea, Manhattan Transfer, Quincy Jones and Bryan Adams.

“Having Jamie Glaser as a featured guest artist on this album is a wonderful honor,” Stewart says. “I have been a diehard fan of his phenomenal guitar playing for many years and collaborating with one of my musical idols is truly a dream come true.”
Glaser says it was an enjoyable and rewarding experience to work with Stewart and be included on the project.

"Working with Isaiah was indeed a special musical journey, and I am honored to be someone he trusted with his vision,” Glaser says. “Isaiah's music is always packed with so much energy, melody and groove, and this new album captures the essence of what is so great about this seasoned artist. Thrill Ride is music that kicks; music that moves you; and music that enables you to discover exciting new things no matter how often you listen."

Thrill Ride is available at cdbaby, iTunes and Amazon.

During the past 16 years, Listeners around the world have streamed and/or downloaded music from Stewart’s prior albums more than 6.5 million times. Thrill Ride is similar in style to past efforts but, according to Stewart, will be more “upbeat” and “hard-rocking,” offering listeners even more diversity: “everything from smooth jazz to heavy metal - from fusion to funky vocal pop – from old school psychedelic rock to tribal hip hop and even percussion-oriented soundtrack music.”

The musically diverse vision for Thrill Ride is the result of a late-night conversation between Stewart and his drum idol, late jazz legend Tony Williams.

"I was hanging with Tony one night and he was his usual sarcastic raconteur self, making jokes about pretty much everything," Stewart explains. "Tony is typically upbeat, witty and funny – but stopped joking when I told him how much I loved his musical diversity.

“Tony is, of course, world renowned for jazz but was equally skilled at playing rock with two bass drums and had even performed heavy metal with Ronnie Montrose and Edgar Winter,” Stewart continues. “When I told Tony how amazing it was that he could play everything from swing to thrashing heavy metal his humor and sarcasm subsided, and he says to me in a very thoughtful, serious manner, ‘Yeah, well, it’s not about labels. An artist should never care about labels? It’s about music. If you like it … play it.’”

To Stewart, having his idol Williams speak those words to him was akin to an army private receiving orders from a commanding officer.

"I took Tony’s words to heart," Stewart says. "The music on this album is about Tony’s free spirit. It's about being true to all the different genres of music that I love – from dreamy smooth jazz to in-your-face thrashing heavy metal – and everything in between. Tony had incredible diversity as both a drummer and artist and I’m trying to follow his amazing example.”

But while Williams provided the musical creative spark for Thrill Ride, jazz legend Chick Corea – who often creates concept albums where the songs provide individual chapters to a single musical narrative – inspired the larger thematic tapestry of the album.

“Like Corea, I love science fiction,” Stewart says, “but rather than borrow from popular writers, I opted to brainstorm my own storyline. I had this crazy idea for a jazz-rock concept album that combined: a futuristic urban landscape; a cool, rebellious hero; a fiery-red muscle car; ominous approaching storm clouds; and an alien invasion.”

Hence, Thrill Ride is an album of 12 related songs. Stewart’s narrative takes place on an urban super-highway in the future shortly after the protagonist, Johnny Cool, wins a customized classic “red devil car” during an all-night poker game in Neptune 5, a futuristic metropolis known for its tribal drum music, gambling and nightlife.

“As the skies darken on the horizon, Johnny embarks on his journey, unaware the gathering storm clouds conceal alien attack ships ready for invasion,” Stewart explains. “The music I composed for this album illustrates Johnny's adventures as he races to stay one step ahead of interstellar firepower and the unknown fate that awaits him.”

A serendipitous coincidence was that Glaser, one of the original guitarists for the Chick Corea Elektric Band, wound up as a special guest performer on Thrill Ride.

“This was not planned but ended up being a nice surprise,” Stewart says. “It’s terrific to have one of Chick’s most talented sidemen along for my musical journey – especially when the idea for a sci-fi narrative was inspired by so many of Corea’s albums.”

A jazz-trained pianist and professional drummer since age 6, Isaiah has studied both acoustic and electronic drums with many of the world's most renowned players and is known for his technically impressive yet groove-oriented approach. Since releasing his previous three albums: Life Games (2000), Urban Playground (2005), and Groove Garden (2005), Stewart has maintained a unique worldwide position with listeners throughout over 30 different countries. He says his success as an independent artist is largely due to fundamental changes occurring in the music industry.

“It’s a brave new world in the music industry today. There are literally more varieties of music available than ever before, and the Internet has made it so listeners can seek out the music they love most with the click of a button. It’s a very exciting time for music lovers and a terrific time to be an indy musician.”

Still there are challenges for independent artists like Stewart as major record labels and a slew of independents vie to promote their artists to a global sea of online consumers.

"The challenges seem insurmountable at times but that’s what keeps me going," Stewart says. "I stay positive and focus on the victories. For example there are fans throughout China, India and the Middle East listening to my music and I constantly get fan mail from around the world in languages I don’t even understand. My wife translates all the Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, French and German. The rest I read and answer with Google Translate.”

Also helping Stewart “stay positive” are the many featured guest artists featured on Thrill Ride in addition to Glaser: Joshua Stewart (piano solos), Terence Hansen (guitars), Dave Chisholm (trumpet), John Flanders (saxophones and flute), David Halliday (saxophones), Shawn Vincent (6-string bass), Carter Black (lead vocals), and My Bad (freestyle rapping).

“All the guest artists on this album have their own successful music careers,” Stewart says, “and I consider myself their biggest fan. There is nothing more awe-inspiring than listening to all these musical virtuosos perform in studio, and when I collaborate with them I try to think like an audience member rather than a producer.

“When it comes to making music, I sometimes think producers can be overly analytical,” Stewart continues.” Audience members, on the other hand, don’t think so much. They live in the moment, do not judge, and respond to the excitement of creative spontaneity as it happens around them. It makes for a better musical experience and that’s what I try to achieve when I’m producing. My featured artists are the best musicians around and I give them the artistic freedom to do what they do best. My job is to capture their musical genius for my listeners.”

Comprising 76 minutes of all-original music, Thrill Ride stands as an extraordinary musical achievement for Stewart and he has the highest possible hopes for the project.

“When I make music, my hopes are always about one thing and one thing only: to make people’s lives better,” Stewart says. “I want my music to have the same effect on my listeners as it does on me: I want to excite and inspire, and the music on Thrill Ride joins the seasoned talents of artists like Jamie Glaser with inspiration from jazz greats like Tony Williams and Chick Corea to deliver the best musical experience possible.”

# # # #

Isaiah Stewart / Thrill Ride

ISAIAH STEWART acoustic drums, electronic V-drums, all acoustic & electric pianos (excluding solos), keyboard synthesizers, trombone, congas, bongos, dumbek, djembe, percussion, programming

JAMIE GLASER electric guitars (1,3,6,7,10)

JOSHUA STEWART acoustic grand piano & Rhodes electric piano solos

TERENCE HANSEN electric guitars

DAVE CHISHOLM lead trumpet & all trumpet solos

JOHN FLANDERS alto & tenor saxophones, flutes

DAVID HALLIDAY alto & tenor saxophones (1,5,6,7)

SHAUN VINCENT 6-string electric bass

CARTER BLACK lead vocals

MY BAD freestyle rap

Backing horns JOHN STEWART trumpet JAMES STEWART alto saxophone

Recorded, mixed, post-produced and mastered in 24-bit 96-kHz digital by Isaiah Stewart at Fortress Hill Studios (Cottonwood Heights, UT) and The Playground (Salt Lake City, UT)

Digital illustration, photography, graphic design and art direction: Russell Anders

Executive producer: John Stewart

Legal affairs: Madison & Mroz, PA

# # # #



to write a review

Chris Harris

Isaiah Stewart's Best Album Ever!
Being a progressive rock drummer myself, I love all of Isaiah Stewart's albums. He is probably one of the best jazz funk/rock drummers out there, and it can definitely be heard on "Thrill Ride".

This album focuses around the drums, and is perfect for those who enjoy really hard, funky and rocking beats. Isaiah has quite a range on the drums and is able to create some of the best dance grooves I have every heard. His drum solos are impressive, well formed and never lose sight of the song.

On this album, he gets awesome support on bass and both bass and drums lay down grooves with such an elegant ease, yet both attack with incredible force. "Storm Chase" is a great track that symbolizes everything about this amazing drummer and artist.

The album opens with "Thrill Ride" where Isaiah and guest guitarist, Jamie Glaser, take respective solos over a driving, hard funk slap-bass rhythm. For "Drive" Isaiah chills things out with a porn-type way-guitar groove that really showcases Joshua Stewart's beautiful acoustic piano solo.

The bluesy classic rock sound of "Nasty Moves" (my favorite on the album) opens with a funky Hendrix type of riff that slams into a killer funk groove that never lets up. The song features the amazing guitar playing of Terence Hansen, whose beautiful distorted guitar work is backed excellently by David Halliday's mournful sax wails as he takes the song to the next level.

David Chisholm's beautiful trumpet work is showcased on "Neptune 5," a dreamy song with a smooth funk groove, and his trumpet solo is both passionate and flawless as he trades improvisation with Jamie Glaser's own impressive Benson-type jazz solo.

Another great saxophonist, John Flanders, appears on several tracks and really tears it up at the end of the album with savage and furious be-bop riffing over thrashing heavy metal guitars on "Invaders," a song that features a drum solo by Isaiah and ends with his drums blowing up into a massive explosion!

This album has everything I love about Isaiah Stewart: cool, funky grooves, exciting and soulful melodies, and lots of phenomenal playing from exceptional guest artists!

Murray Schulzinger

Isaiah Stewart is one of the most unique and exciting jazz/rock fusion artists we have in the global indy music scene these days. Isaiah makes contemporary jazz his music is accessible and easy to grasp (even my friends who like country, folk and pop music seem to enjoy his music).

Thrill Ride, Isaiah’s fourth studio album, definitely finds this artist at his creative peak with music that I think will truly connect with his listeners. What particularly makes Thrill Ride special is that Isaiah has teamed up with Jean-Luc Ponty and Chick Corea sideman, jazz-rock guitarist Jamie Glaser.

Glaser’s playing on the album is virtually immeasurable, working his classic fusion magic on the fret board with speed, precision and passion, building each solo to a perfect shredding climax!

This is Isaiah’s first contemporary jazz release in five years and it’s a definite keeper! Rick produced this total music experience, wrote all 12 songs and plays drums, v-drums, keyboards, trombone, hand drums and percussion.

In addition to Glaser, Isaiah also employs an array of special guest artists to help bring his music to life including Joshua Stewart (keys), Terence Hansen (guitars), John Flanders (woodwinds), David Halliday (sax), Shawn Vincent (bass), Carter Black (vocals) and My Bad (freestyle rapping).

The high-octane music on Thrill Ride is joyful, exciting, fun, energetic and earthy and hits you in your tone center via Isaiah’s solid groove-oriented drumming; funky R&B bass & guitar grooves; keyboard wizardry, and emotional, expressive improvisation from all players involved.

The recording jumps off with the exciting title track “Thrill Ride” which features a funky slap-bass hook and Glaser’s signature shredding. Dave Chisholm’s trumpet playing is both soulful and passionate, and you can just imagine hearing the familiar aphorism “Oh snap!” as Isaiah kicks in the deep funk grooves and those first “thrilling” suspended chords hit your ears!

An infectious, sexy groove follows with “Drive” as Shawn Vincent’s low deep-chill bass playing joins solid wah-guitar rhythms for a pulsating and dreamy “get out on the highway” feeling that hits you square in both gut and heart.

Then a crash of thunder begins “Storm Chase,” another great track to ignite your senses with its groove, flow, spontaneity and vibrancy. Seattle pianist Joshua Stewart adds his keyboard proficiency to Glaser’s own dreamy guitar soloing to deliver listeners to a boiling point of finger snapping and head bobbing.

Featured freestyle rappers My Bad bring on a powerful urban vibe with the earthy and bluesy hip-hop track “Beat The Drum” that showcases the amazing guitar playing of Terence Hansen as John Flanders’ sax playing brings new dimension and depth to the heartfelt chord changes.

One of the most exciting songs on Thrill Ride is the heavy metal inspired “Red Devil Car,” which features Glaser showing off his metal chops as well as an expressive, powerhouse of a solo by saxophonist David Halliday that hits you like cannon fire, speaking directly to your heart, mind and soul – and other (unmentionable) parts of your anatomy.

I have all of Isaiah’s albums and overall, I feel that the 12 songs on Thrill Ride show the evolution, growth and depth of his enduring musicality. I highly recommend this entire album!