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Taking up from where iconic bands like Deep Purple and Bad Company have left off, HEAVEN & EARTH is on a mission to resurrect the sanctity of classic rock in its purest, most accessible form on their third studio album titled Dig. Due out April 23rd on Quarto Valley Records, Dig was produced by Dave Jenkins--who's turned the knobs for everyone from Metallica to Tower of Power--and features special guests Howard Leese (Heart, Paul Rodgers), Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi) and David Paich (Toto).
HEAVEN & EARTH--guitarist STUART SMITH, singer JOE RETTA, bassist CHUCK WRIGHT, drummer RICHIE ONORI and keyboardist ARLAN SCHIERBAUM--fuse elements of hard rock, blues and bits of classical with bravado and a razor-sharp focus.
As the band's founder and visionary, Smith says about Dig, "I feel that with the crafting of the songs on this album, the incredible band we've put together, especially with powerhouse vocalist Joe Retta and the unwavering support of Quarto Valley Records' President, Bruce Quarto, we really have a shot at getting Heaven & Earth the attention it deserves. This album is by far, the best thing I have ever done in my life!"
The British-born guitarist spent the 70's bending strings with numerous groups before he distinguished himself by making the acquaintance of Deep Purple's Ritchie Blackmore, who mentored the up-and-coming musician. "I'm probably one of the few people in the world who grew up with a poster of someone on their wall, ended up meeting them, becoming Friends with them, and getting mentored by them," Smith notes. At the urging of Blackmore, Smith migrated to Los Angeles where the seeds for HEAVEN & EARTH were planted. The band released two critically acclaimed albums--Heaven & Earth Featuring Stuart Smith (1994) and Windows to the World (2000)--which helped advance Smith's musical vision. Now, with Dig complete, the guitarist says HEAVEN & EARTH is a true band, an energized collective of like-minded musicians who are excited at bringing its unique, celestial brand of rock to audiences all over the world in 2013. "All the pieces are in place," he explains with graceful candor. "We're ready to make this our year."
All the backing tracks on Dig were recorded at Ocean Studios in Burbank, California, and all the overdubs were done at the band's own Wine Cellar Studios in Woodland Hills, California. To further refine the record's sonic reach, Jenkins used a Closed Loop Analog Signal Processor (CLASP), a device that integrates real analog tape recording into digital tools like Pro Tools to create a warm and vintage sound. Both Van Halen and Aerosmith enlisted a CLASP on their most recent albums.
In the same tradition, HEAVEN & EARTH brought in acclaimed photographer Glen Wexler to create the cover art for Dig. Wexler has shot over 300 album covers, including records by Van Halen, Black Sabbath and Michael Jackson. HEAVEN & EARTH will release a series of music videos for Dig--directed by Glen and produced by Meiert Avis and Jeremy Alter of Pusher Media--in February 2013.
The track listing for Dig:
No Money, No Love
I Don't Know What Love Is
Waiting for The End of The World
House of Blues
Back in Anger
Rock & Roll Does
Man & Machine
A Day Like Today
Live as One
About HEAVEN & EARTH:
The Origins of HEAVEN & EARTH align the band's founder and visionary, Stuart Smith, with a rich lineage of rock's most celebrated musicians. Kelly Hansen (Foreigner), Joe Lynn Turner (Rainbow) and Kelly Keeling (King Kobra) all fronted the band at various junctures. Guitarists Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi) and Howard Leese (Heart, Paul Rodgers), singer and bassist Glenn Hughes (Deep Purple, Black Country Communion), bassist Steve Priest (Sweet) and drummer Camine Appice (Jeff Beck Group/Vanilla Fudge/Rod Stewart), among others, have each contributed their extraordinary talents to HEAVEN & EARTH's first two albums: Heaven & Earth Featuring Stuart Smith (1994) and Windows to the World (2000). HEAVEN & EARTH's groundbreaking debut album, Heaven & Earth Featuring Stuart Smith, is considered a cult classic and brought Smith to the forefront of the guitar elite being compared in the press to Deep Purple's Ritchie Blackmore, Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page and garnering Smith the award for "Best Guitarist" and "Best New CD" for three years running at the Los Angeles All Access Music Awards. In the summer of 2012, the guitarist set out to mold HEAVEN & EARTH into a world-class recording and touring band which led to the recording of their new album Dig and now the future has never looked brighter for the band.