Samer Fanek | Guide Me

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New Age: Contemporary Instrumental New Age: Neo-Classical Moods: Featuring Piano
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Guide Me

by Samer Fanek

Melodic, powerful and dramatic piano-driven music blending orchestral elements and synthesizers, alongside some piano solo tracks.
Genre: New Age: Contemporary Instrumental
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
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1. Grand Opening
3:56 $0.99
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2. Long Time Ago
2:30 $0.99
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3. Newborn
4:27 $0.99
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4. Now You See
3:34 $0.99
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5. Guide Me
4:15 $0.99
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6. Guardian
3:06 $0.99
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7. Before Dawn
2:41 $0.99
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8. Chasing Time
3:03 $0.99
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9. For Lila
4:42 $0.99
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10. Sense of Purpose
3:14 $0.99
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11. Back to Hometown
3:39 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Samer Fanek is an award-winning Polish-Jordanian pianist, keyboardist, composer and producer of contemporary instrumental music. "Guide Me" is his second album, taking you through a piano-driven musical journey with his signature style of melodic, powerful and dramatic instrumental music.

Press quotes:
“I have not heard an album of this genre that has captivated me this much in – wow, can it be a quarter century?” - The JW Vibe

“An extraordinary musical achievement that will give listeners the occasion to feel what the artist is feeling” - New Age Music Reviews

“A fabulous second album by Samer Fanek. It is a proof that Samer is in the elite division of new artists in our genre” - New Age Music Guide

“An album rich in a dramatic style and ever abundant in the flair and passion department” - One World Music Radio

“An exciting mix of big, bold pieces and music that is softer and more romantic or pensive” - Mainly Piano

“A true expression of love through his piano and some of the most wonderful orchestral backing you’ll ever hear!” - Contemporary Fusion Reviews Magazine

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Reviews


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Kathy Parsons

From MainlyPiano
It’s been more than two years since Samer Fanek released his very successful and award winning debut, "Wishful Thinking" (2016). I’ve been anxiously looking forward to his follow-up, and "Guide Me" was definitely worth the wait! Once again, Samer created all of the music in his home studio, utilizing his keyboard and 50 different virtual instrument libraries and synthesizer patches to perform each of the instrument parts himself. All eleven tracks are piano-driven and are an exciting mix of big, bold pieces and music that is softer and more romantic or pensive. Some pieces are fully-orchestrated and some are solo piano. Yanni’s influence is very evident, but Samer’s style is his own. He performed a solo piano house concert in my series in May 2016, and I was very impressed with Samer’s musical performance as well as his engaging interaction with the audience. I sincerely hope that Guide Me will catch the attention of an international audience and give Samer and his music the recognition it deserves!

Samer Fanek was born and raised in Amman, Jordan to a Polish mother and Jordanian father. He moved to the US in 2008 to complete a Master’s degree in computer science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. While he was there, he often played the piano after classes and discovered how much he enjoys making a positive impact on people with his music. It became Samer’s dream to create music that affects people’s lives emotionally and to do that on a world-wide scale. Samer took piano lessons for a short time in Jordan, but he had already discovered that he could teach himself by listening to music that he likes and that he was able to figure out what each instrument is doing by ear.

"Guide Me" begins with “Grand Opening,” a powerful opener that boldly announces “I’m back with more music!” Samer says that he thinks this will be a great piece to open concerts with (I agree), so his fans have that to look forward to! The impassioned piano is front and center throughout this exciting piece along with soaring strings, driving percussion and bass. Whoo-hoo! We’re off to a great start! “Long Time Ago” is a much quieter and more reflective piano solo. “Newborn” opens as a lively piano solo with a bit of reverb that gives it a slightly mysterious sound. As the piece becomes fully orchestrated, it becomes more wistful and poignant and is always very beautiful. Samer says that “Now You See” is his personal favorite on the album. Piano and orchestration give the piece a graceful sweep as well as a powerful emotional impact. It’s a beauty! The title track is a lively and lovely minor-key waltz that is also fully-orchestrated with the piano in the lead. “Chasing Time,” one of the more intense and rhythmic pieces, features driving drums, soaring strings and lightning-fast fingers on the piano. Great stuff! The sweetly lyrical “For Lila” is a piece Samer wrote for and dedicated to his mother. Piano and strings make this piece an elegant expression of love. “Back to Hometown” was created with thoughts about the long journey back to Jordan, evoking feelings of nostalgia and homesickness. This touching piano solo clearly expresses those emotions and brings this excellent album to a close. I give "Guide Me" both thumbs up!
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Dick Metcalf

21st Century dynamic piano compositions Samer Fanek
GUIDE ME: As I listen (carefully) to this dynamic set of modern piano compositions, I get the feeling it’s (definitely) Samer guiding us via his intimate connection with the power of the universe… that’s particularly true on pieces like the one he composed for his mother, “For Lila“… a true expression of love through his piano and some of the most wonderful orchestral backing you’ll ever hear! I reviewed his debut in issue # 164, and it got high marks from me, to be sure.

I found a short trailer that shows Samer playing the keyboard for the new release…

…very enjoyable, but for the next album, I’d like to see a trailer that’s a bit longer, and includes head shots, etc… on the other hand, be sure you SUBSCRIBE to Samer’s channel (since you’re there already)… he has a LOT of other material you will enjoy.

I particularly enjoyed “Long Time Ago“, which focuses more on his keyboard in solo mode… full depth, and excellent use of upper and lower registers for penetrating overtones… I loved this piece, and will be listening to it often!

The string weaves and deeply moving orchestral surrounds against Samer’s keyboard on the 4:26 “Newborn” are totally awesome, and will lift your spirit into celestial realms you never imagined before.

One of the strongest piano/orchestra performances I’ve heard (yet) in 2018, “Sense of Purpose“, made the list for my personal picks on my iPhone, so it will be riding with me every day in my GTO (lol)… full of majestic chord ranges and powerful stylings!

Of the eleven stunning songs offered up for our aural adventure, it was (without doubt) the beautiful title track, “Guide Me“, that got my vote for personal favorite… Samer’s pacing on this tune is perfect, and I can easily see the piece being recommended for (and WINNING) awards!

I give this rising young artist a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, with an “EQ” (energy quotient) rating of 4.99 for his latest sonic adventure. Get more information, and pre-order the album now on the Samer Fanek website. Rotcod Zzaj
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BT Fasmer

“Guide Me” is a fabulous second album by Samer Fanek
Samer Fanek is one of the most promising and interesting New Age music artists out there. “Guide Me” starts with the grandiose “Grand Opening”, followed by the thoughtful “Long Time Ago”. There’s a wonderful hint of classical composers in Samer’ music, such as Debussy and Ravel – but the main influence is Yanni. That said, Samer is not just a Yanni copy, but a unique and extremely talented artist. It takes a master to compose and play on the same level as a master.

“Long Time Ago” fades beautifully into the next piece, “Newborn”. It starts slowly, then there’s an intricate build-up to a very impressive orchestral conclusion. It is beautiful beyond words.

The song “Now You See” is like the soundtrack to an A-list Hollywood movie. Anyone with contacts there should immediately submit this as a demo. The title track is an intricate neo classical piece that just continues to evolve. Here Samer is not just on par with Yanni; George Winston would have been happy with this piano melody. Bravo!

“Guardian” and “Before Dawn” are lovely, romantic piano melodies. At this stage we notice what a well-balanced album this is. The mix of piano ballads and orchestral arrangement is, as always, amazing. “Chasing Time” is a dramatic piece with wonderful backing. Fans of Samer’s previous album will feel right at home.

“For Lila” is a jewel of a song. There’s a very well made build-up here; the first minute or so is thoughtful and contemplative, then powerful strings and other orchestral arrangements take us on an unforgettable journey. Lila should be very thankful indeed. “Sense of Purpose” is an upbeat and happy tune that make you think that anything is possible. “Back to Hometown” is a feel-good piano melody, and a perfect album closer. It leaves you wanting more. Since “Guide Me” is only 39 minutes long, hitting the replay button seems like a great idea.

Samer’s second album is in many ways an interesting release. We already knew that he mastered the orchestral format. “Guide Me” shows that Samer also is a great piano composer and performer. Perhaps we will get a solo piano album next time?

In conclusion: “Guide Me” is a fabulous second album! It is a proof that Samer Fanek is in the elite division of new artists in our genre, and that his first album “Wishful Thinking” was more than wishful thinking. In this context it is tempting to say that Samer in “Guide Me” shows that he is in no need of guidance either.
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Jonathan Widran

Epic work harkening back to 90's symphonic piano driven new age
Perhaps it’s just a coincidence, but the release of emerging symphonic pianist/composer Samer Fanek’s emotionally impactful full length sophomore album Guide Me nearly coincides with that of the 25th Anniversary Deluxe Edition of Yanni’s epic best-selling “Live at the Acropolis.” Before allowing my imagination to soar to transcendent realms while listening to the Jordanian born, Bay Area based artist’s latest sweeping melodic pieces, my first thoughts were of blissful musical time travel.

I felt like I was back in the mid-90s, when pianists and orchestral masters like Yanni, John Tesh and David Lanz defined contemporary instrumental and new age music. Then I thought of another great artist who turned my heart around with the same kind of soaring, intoxicating blend of ivory and string section magic – Argentine pianist Raul Di Blasio, who mixed that dual vibe with a unique Latin flair.

All this is to say that I have not heard an album of this genre that has captivated me this much in – wow, can it be a quarter century? This kind of music is timeless, and nothing in this genre past or present sounds dated. So decades don’t matter. But hearts do – and it’s wonderful to discover a young artist with the whole world in front of him who can captivate mine like this multi-talented indie artist who should be on the radar of everyone who loves compelling, thoughtful and free flowing piano melodies and passionate orchestral soundscapes.

It’s delightful to see the powers that have taken notice of Samer, to the tune of his 2016 debut album Wishful Thinking winning silver medals in the Global Music Awards and a Hollywood Music in Media Award (HMMA) nomination; reaching #12 on the Billboard New Age chart, #1 on three Amazon charts and #2 on the Zone Music Reporter (ZMR) chart. His momentum has continued with Guide Me. Even before its official release, it hit #1 on four Amazon charts, including Best Sellers in New Age, Hot New Releases and Movers and Shakers. Incredibly it also hit the Top 30 on the Amazon Best Sellers chart for all albums in all genres. He’s also something of a YouTube sensation, with over 6,600 subscribers and over 3 million views of videos of his originals and cover tunes.

All that promise and those accolades are not due to hype, but the emotional connection fans of Samer’s style are discovering as they listen. These 11 tracks take you on a majestic journey into his musical heart via 11 powerful, melodically and rhythmically compelling tracks - eight blending synthesizers and orchestral elements and three conveying every ounce of heartfelt emotion on solo piano. Incredibly, while Samer aspires to take this music all over the world with talented musicians and top orchestras, Guide Me is a self-generated, home studio project.

The title track “Guide Me” (so titled because it was the first track he composed for the project) begins as a graceful solo piece before bursting into a whimsical and percussive, orchestral dance complete with stately strings and powerful drums. It’s the emotional centerpiece of the set, whose “story” (which can be interpreted via the listener’s own experience) begins with the bright dramatic, explosive fanfare of “Grand Opening,” tones down for the eloquent and heartfelt solo expression of the nostalgic piece “Long Time Ago” and finds new life amidst the wonder of being ‘Newborn,” which tempo hops from dynamic swells of emotion and moments of true reflection. Samer calls “Now You See,” a jubilant piece about self-discovery, his favorite piece, and its dreamy sense of whimsy and sway may have you feeling the same.

Other gems include the gossamer, angel-soft solo piece “Guardian,” the lively and hopeful, film score lush piece “For Lila” (a loving dedication to Samer’s mother), the hypnotic, poppy, lightly funky “Chasing Time,” a hard driving and rhythmically determined search for a “Sense of Purpose” and the sweetly meditative closer, a triumphant yet understated return “Back to Hometown,” which expresses a feeling of melancholic homesickness for his native Jordan.
As exciting as Samer’s commanding orchestral arrangements are, sometimes it’s the quieter contemplative spaces of the three solo piano pieces that speak most deeply to the heart. Happily, he is considering doing a third project that will be all solo piano. It will be interesting to see how this superb talent’s career evolves both creatively and commercially from this point on. I predict he will be a force in new age and neo-classical music for years to come!
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Steve Sheppard

An album I fully recommend
Samer Fanek is back with a new album entitled Guide Me, hot on the heels of his amazing success of 2016 with the release of his debut album Wishful Thinking. Fanek is a consummate performer; his style on the keys has a certain dramatic flair that is really enjoyable, so let’s once more take a musical voyage with this new album.
So, how do you start an album of masterful piano with instrumentation? You start with a track that has passion, power and a sense of grandeur like the starting offering entitled Grand Opening, a composition that will have you wanting to stand and applaud at its conclusion.
Fanek also has a sensitive style to his performance structure as well; you can hear this on the composition called Long Time Ago. There is a soft but redolent charm about this one which is very appealing; it manifests a deep and reflective mood. Fanek has created a feeling of memory, a segway between a sad reflection of past happiness, which for some reason has now passed, but still creates a loving tone to his new creation.
There is a certain continuance of energy on this next piece called Newborn, but this is one to really pay attention to, while the start may sound tentative, the energy, build and construction continues to grow. Apart from his genius on piano, there is a soft and flowing backdrop of synths here to admire as well. This composition is very well named; one truly feels like they are sampling the essence of something new, fresh and very exhilarating.
Now You See Me is up next; here you will find a flowing narrative of piano that wends its way around the hall ways of our musical minds. There is a beautiful fluency about this piece that creates such a charming narrative of tone. The mixture of keyboards and piano work so well here and manifest an offering that flows so wonderfully, creating a tranquil yet driving energy, one that literally bursts into a crescendo of excitement three quarters into the arrangement.
This is the part of an album that I adore, it is the title track, and of course we are at the doorway marked Guide Me. Some have said that Fanek is one of the best young piano performers of his day, and here on this piece you will see why. Listen to his stunning performance on piano, the intensity of style here is truly dramatic and extremely powerful to witness, the continual onward energy just seems to increase, and the passion within the performance is so empowering.
We now drift over the half way line of the album and as we do so we come across a gentle offering entitled Guardian. Fanek has really taken his time with this one and manifested a piece that truly has a sense of confidence and security about its build and construction, but there is also a layer of sensitivity about this one that is deeply moving to listen to as well, this is a true feel good piece for us all to enjoy.
This is the time of day I used to rise and go to work in, as I had to start at 5am in the morning and Before Dawn, while those days are long gone, I still have fond memories from this truly beautiful moment of first light. Samer Fanek has set his goal here perhaps of creating a piece that is redolent of the subject matter and I’m glad to say he completely succeeds, that gentle and peaceful vibe is there that only early morning can give, but also a sense of reassurance that life is about to be lived all over again, and all is as it should be.
One of my personal favourites of this amazing new release would be this offering called Chasing Time, something that is impossible perhaps, but the artist has manifested a flair for the multi instrumental nature of performance and brings us a driven, powerful opus with percussion, piano and keyboards; contemporary instrumental music genre can only be a better place with compositions like this within it.
As we move into the deeper waters of the album we come across a real merge of styles, one that has a sense of the classical blended with the new age and the contemporary instrumental genre, all that and more can be found in the piece For Lila. One could think that Fanek is even treading into the world of movie sound track music with this fine offering.
It seems amazing that I now stand before the threshold of the penultimate track off the album; it is called Sense of Purpose. No matter how long you live, or how old you are, this is something we all need to have; this has to be one of the most driven pieces off the release, it has a beautifully exciting energy about its construction, one that will have you playing it over and again many, many times.
We now finish with the arrangement called Back to Hometown. I noticed that Fanek sites one of his inspirations as my neighbour David Lanz, here you can see why; there is an element of David’s energy on this piece, the fluency and soft approach, one that is stylishly confident and extremely professional. I loved this end offering and salute the artist for leaving a dramatic album with such style and class.
Guide Me is Samer Fanek’s second album, and in my view his best work so far, on this release the artist has clearly taken life’s best shots, and from these moments of growth, created something in music we can all relate to. Guide Me is an album rich in a dramatic style and ever abundant in the flair and passion department, however it also has some of the most charming and reflective compositions I have heard so far from the artist, and thus doing so, created a perfectly balance album for us all to revel in. This is an album I find easy to recommend.
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