June 6, 2013
Finally, the album is available now, world-wide. You can find it online at Amazon.com, by searching for "Flash featuring Ray Bennett". It's been getting very good reviews from around the world, which clearly is pleasing all of us. I thank you all for your support. Will be doing a better job of keeping up with this area of the web site going forward.
March 8, 2013
Sorry to hear of the passing of Yes and Flash co-founder Peter Banks. I have very clear memories of first hearing Peter's work on the first 2 Yes albums while I was living in Frankfurt, Germany, It was there I also vividly remember purchasing the first Flash album, as soon as it came out.
Condolences to Peter's family. He clearly played a unique role in the development of both Yes and Flash, and he will be missed, without question. I now have the honor of playing some of Peter's guitar parts and I never fail to think of him as certain phrases/licks pass by in a song. Going forward, especially with his passing, I'll think of him and send him energy as I'm playing those lines.
Thanks for all you contributed Peter. My musical life has been better having you in it.
February 28, 2013
Album is now in it's final mixing/mastering phases. We are looking at a release date somewhere around mid-march, to be announced later. Very pleased with the over-all outcome. Looking forward to wrapping this up, concentrating on the 'live' show now, and here-and-there----working gradually on the follow up album. I know Ray and Colin are quite pleased with the CD. Again, I'm happy to see the two of them back in the saddle again. It's long overdue that they worked together in this fashion, and now we'll have a real strong album to show for the long efforts of the past couple of years. It won't be long now.
October 4, 2012
Did I say back in January the album was nearly done? Ooops. Seriously--the album has change drastically over the past 10 months, and it's been
well worth the time we've taken to add/change things. The Universe has a way of stepping in and dictating what we 'think' we're sure of, ha ha.
But the album IS finished, and we're working on cover ideas/design as we speak.
I've very happy with the album. I think Flash fans old and new will truly enjoy this musical adventure. There's a LOT there to digest. Something is always happening, the material is well written, and Ray will will truly surprise Flash fans with his wonderful lead guitar work. Of course, his bass work is incredible, always...one of the best in the business. Colin's voice is fantastic...comes across extremely well. Even as an old Flash fan myself, it's great to hear Ray and Colin like this again. I'd be excited even if I weren't a band member, that's how much I like it!
It won't be long before the album is available to you all.
In other areas, I've been working with a great local band "Rewind", helping them with arrangements and keyboard tracks on their upcoming 2-CD set which they will be selling off-stage at their gigs here in Las Vegas. Great sounding group.
I'm also talking with Mike Tiano about doing a track on his upcoming CD. He just sent me an mp3 to explore, and a chord chart, so I'm looking forward to working on that as well.
Special shout out: Happy Birthday Kyla!!!! (:
Peace to all...Rick
January 23, 2012
The new Flash album, (FLASH IV), is currently in the final mixing and mastering stages. I received an email from Colin Carter a couple of nights ago asking to work on
a string quartet arrangement of an old Flash favorite, Manhattan Morning, which Colin has re-visited. I'll be working on that this coming week. The album has taken longer
than expected, which is not uncommon. I'm quite happy with the final selection of material, and the direction of the album. There will be plenty of great moments contained within for Flash fans to experience. I think Ray and Colin have done a fabulous job of piecing this album together, and it's been a real pleasure, and an honor, to be part of the process. Looking forward to taking this great album 'live'. Current plans for Flash are wrapping up the album and doing shows in the UK/England early in 2012.
For me, personally, I've been involved in several other projects as well. Though my time has been limited, as far as working on my solo keyboard album, it is making strides forward, and I think that since now the 'direction' has been decided upon, the pieces will be falling into place more quickly over the next few months. I've also been co-producing a 2 CD Set for the Las Vegas-based band 'Rewind', which has been a lot of fun, though quite time consuming. This project should be winding down by the end of March.
Enjoying the wonderful 'winter' weather here in Las Vegas (today was cloudy/rainy/dark---perfect!), and moving forward, step by step on several projects. There will be some audio clips added to the website in the next couple of weeks, I promise. Stay tuned for those. I'm gathering a few up as we speak.
Special thanks to everyone who's 'found' me again after years of being out of contact, via this website. Thanks for writing. And a special shout out to Steve Frederickson, who
is maintaining the web site.
Updates will be done on a more regular basis, I promise! (:
Rick 1/23/2012 6 pm
This months's issue of GOLDMINE magazine, one of the largest in-store magazines for record collectors, has included a two and a half page article on Flash, consisting of a lengthy interview with Ray Bennett. The article mostly addresses the early days of Flash, but does cover some new ground concerning the eventual disbanding of Flash, and of course, the re-formation of Flash and the new album--nearly completed atthe time of this writing. The magazine;'s cover features Yes, as it celebrates the 40th anniversary of the release of "The Yes Album'. This was the third release by Yes, and played a pivotal role in their finally emerging into mainstream popularity in 1971. I was living in Germany at that time, and I remember the day fellow keyboardist/jazz pianist David Bach (ex Happy The Man) handed it to me to take home saying "I think you'll like this!". He was right. Congratulations to Yes for all it's accomplishments! I attended a recent solo performance by Jon Anderson here in Vegas, and got to spend some time with him afterward. He still sounds great!
Following the Yes Album, of course, ex Yes guitarist Peter Banks, along with Ray, Colin, Mike and Yes keyboardist Tony Kaye, collectively put out the first Flash album. Those were great days for prog rock. The rest is history. Check out the great interview by Ray in GOLDMINE. Articles of the Flash reunion have now appeared in magazines as far reaching as Russia!
Quick Flash updates: Colin has informed me recently that he has about a dozen songs picked out now for his solo album, and is simply working onthose at this time, making sure they are the right choices. I'm working away on my solo album as well, and am very happy with the progress beingmade. 2011 will be a good year for Flash fans old and new--as a lot of new music will be surfacing. Thanks for the interest. Rick.
FLASH UPDATE/SOLO ALBUM STARTED
Just a quick update for everyone. I've personally started to record a solo album, which is taking up huge amounts of my time, Flash rehearsals are still regularly
happening, but currently it's mainly Ray and I working out keyboard/guitar parts. Ray is nearly finished mixing the new Flash album, which is taking up huge
amounts of his time as well. Colin has returned to Oregon for a rest, and he is starting to put together material for the very first solo Colin Carter album as well,
which I'm looking forward to helping him record. So there are many things going on right now, simultaneously.
As far as Flash gigs go, we are currently talking to several people in different areas of the world concerning dates starting in Spring 2011, including a
joint East Coast swing with a popular prog band (to rename nameless for now, until dates are solidified)--but which would be a fantastic pairing and make a great
show. I'm hoping that tour solidifies--It would be a great combination. But there are other festivals and Midwest dates we are looking into as well. All of these
things are happening at once.
For me, personally....I've started the initial stages of the solo album. I spent a couple of weeks reviewing old tapes/CD's for possible older ideas that I'd like to
resurrect--things I've always enjoyed and wanted to use 'somewhere' but haven't been used yet, etc. But seriously, there are way too many tapes/CD's to listen to,
and if I were to go through them all, no album would ever get recorded. So I had to draw the line and start the recording process with mostly new material.
I would say that the album will be 90% newly written things, and to that will be added some real nice things from the archives that I'm really excited about adding
to the album. I had, I thought, a 'working title' for the album...but even in just a week's time, the concept of the album changed somewhat, and now I'm not sure
what to call it. Why is that important? Psychologically, it gives me focus, a certain type of 'feeling'---an set of musical colors to use, if you will, when approaching
how to write parts. But even without a name, I'm very clear now on the direction of the album, and have most of it sketched out on paper. I would say that at this point in time
about 70% of the music is yet to be written, so I have no idea how that will turn out. One track is fully written, and two others are nearly finished.
For the other tracks, I know what I want them to be like...but have not even begun to write them yet--I just know that I want certain types of pieces appearing at certain
times, and have those tracks blocked off---I just need to fill in the blanks now.
I love Fall. This is a wonderful time of the year for me, creatively speaking. And it fits the mood of the album very well, which will have a theme to it. This is the perfect time
for me to be working on a solo project. And trust me, it's completely consuming. Between this project, and working closely with Ray on Flash material, there is little time
for anything else. And one last thing---I've been living in the new house for about 4+ months now, and still haven't plugged in my TV yet.
I don't plan on plugging it in any time soon. I'll try to do updates more regularly.
As far as this website goes--as soon as I have a bit more time, I will be putting some music clips here, as well as a small photo gallery, so check back soon. That will be happening sooner than later.
9-6-2010 I'd like to thank everyone who attended the Prog Day 2010 Flash performance, and especially those who helped to put it on, and personally assisted me during our fabulous weekend at the festival site. Special thanks to Paul Sears and his excellent staff/volunteers.
We all had a great time there, met a lot of wonderful prog music lovers and I look forward to seeing you all again at future concerts. I had a great weekend, and I can speak on the band's behalf in saying that we all enjoyed the
event very much. A special hello to the other band members we had the pleasure of meeting and spending time with. Hope to work with you all again in the future.
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