Ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro has released an incandescent version of Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide” featuring a sparkling vocal performance by Rachel James from Denver-based folk-rock band Dearling. “Landslide” is the third single released off Shimabukuro’s upcoming album, Trio, which prominently features his touring band members Nolan Verner (bass) and Dave Preston (guitar).
Set to be released on February 14, 2020, Trio will be Shimabukuro’s first on Music Theories Recordings, a division of Mascot Label Group. Trio will be released digitally, on CD, and on colored double vinyl, and can be pre-ordered HERE
“’Landslide’ is one of my favorite tracks on the Trio record. Rachel James – lead singer of Dearling – has such an incredible voice. She sings with so much honesty and emotion, and it was an honor to work with her in the studio,” Shimabukuro says.
Re-imaging beloved classics has become a Shimabukuro specialty. In celebration of the announcement of the new album, he and the band released their own unique version of Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here.” The suggestion to record the song came from Shimabukuro’s longtime manager, Van Fletcher, a dedicated Floyd fan who had given the ukulele titan the album of the same name years ago and pressed him to listen to it – which he did. Acting on such inspiration, the three musicians turn in a glorious reading – the blend of Preston’s rustic guitar lines, Verner’s richly intuitive bass playing along with Shimabukuro’s ravishing treatment of melodies is one of the album’s standout moments.
For the past five years, bassist Nolan Verner has been a constant presence on stage and in the studio with Shimabukuro, and two years ago, guitarist Dave Preston joined the fold. The three clicked so well on the road and during the recording of Shimabukuro’s 2018 album, The Greatest Day, that the ukulele master decided to document their sonic alchemy in a more official way on his newest album, Trio. Unlike previous releases that sometimes featured studio musicians, this would be a true band album, with the only sounds performed by Shimabukuro, Verner and Preston, and many of the songs would be written spontaneously in the studio. In this way, Trio marks a bold and exciting new era in Shimabukuro’s already remarkable career.
It’s fitting that 21 years after his first release, Shimabukuro is continuing to push boundaries on both the instrument and himself. What would the 4 year old Jake make of the adult Jake now in 2019, from trying to master those first three chords to playing in front of Queen Elizabeth II, touring the world playing some of the not only most iconic venues, but iconic landmarks. He brings a new way to approach an instrument with only four strings and two octaves that has inspired others to pick up the ukulele worldwide. Trio marks another chapter in his remarkable story so far and feels as fresh and inventive as his earliest releases.
2020 will continue to be another landmark year for Shimabukuro, with a second special release to follow later in the year, where he collaborates with a number of high-profile guests. Jake & Friends will feature artists such as Lyle Lovett, Bette Midler, Jack Johnson, Jon Anderson (Yes), Warren Haynes (The Allman Brothers Band, Gov’t Mule), Moon Taxi, Ray Benson (Asleep At The Wheel), and Michael McDonald (The Doobie Brothers) among others. More details to follow.
*February 12 – Troy, NY – Troy Savings Bank Music Hall
*February 13 – North Bethesda, MD – The Music Center at Strathmore
*February 14 – Phoenixville, PA – Colonial Theatre
February 15 – Princeton, NJ – Berlind Theatre
February 16 – State College, PA – State Theatre
February 17 – Oakmont, PA – The Oaks Theater
February 18 – Bethlehem, PA – Musikfest Café presented by Yuengling
February 19 – Natick, MA – Center for the Arts in Natick
February 20 – Hartford, CT – Infinity Hall
February 21 – Beverly, MA – The Cabot
February 22 – Mamaroneck, NY – Emelin Theatre
February 23 – Charleston, WV – Mountain Stage
March 6 – Honolulu, HI – Blue Note
March 14 – Kahului, HI – Maui Arts & Cultural Center
April 2 – Monterey, CA – Golden State Theatre
April 3 – Vacaville, CA – Vacaville Performing Arts Theatre
April 4 – Campbell, CA – Heritage Theatre
April 5 – San Ramon, CA – Dougherty Valley Performing Arts Center\
April 15 – Leesburg, VA – Tally Ho Theatre
April 16 – Richmond, VA – The Tin Pin
July 2 – Reno, NV – Robert Z Hawkins Amphitheater
- = with Sierra Hull