GOLDEN AVATAR - A Change of Heart
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GOLDEN AVATAR is a Jazz Rock/ Fusion band from the United States with a very large ensemble of artists featuring on their debut album "A Change of Heart" 1976. The artists featured include founder of the band and visionary Michael Cassidy on lead vocals, guitar, Carl Bezzemer & David Stout on piano, Barry Goldsman on organ, synthesizer, Carl Lange & Steve Pinkston on bass, and Drew Lawrence on drums & percussion. Other artists complete the large musicianship gathering including Bob Conti on congas, John Goux on electric guitar, Jerry Peterson on Soprano saxophone, Rod Rozzelle on vibes, Marilyn Berger on harp, Garry Abbott, Hush Preston, David Stout & Jerry Petterson on flutes, David Stout & Bill Rechenbach on trombone, Harry Kim, David Grover & Kurt Sletten on trumpets, Gina Kronstadt, Steven Lance, Pam Thompkins, Lisa Adams, Joan Murakiani, Ulysses Roseman Jr., Tom Tally, Donna Paul & Kihae Kim on strings, and finally Madonna Slavin, Kevin Yee, Barry Goldsman, Micelle Pearlman & Alvin Marsden on background vocals.
The Hindu visionary Michael Cassidy writes all the lyrics and the music that ranges from diverse style such as big band jazz, symphonic, folk, funk and disco. The presence of orchestrated instruments such as brass and strings is a key feature. The lyrics have Spiritual weight and are sung with solid harmonies."Pastimes" followed in 1978 with the same extensive lineup. The album features a brand of symphonic rock on 'Visions', and an Indian-ballad 'There is a Light', with oboe, sitar and tabla. There is even Gospel flavours on 'Is it Worth the Price you Pay?' and flute dominated folk on 'Lover of the Lord'.
Cassidy's lyrics are a sardonic exploration of modernity and social decline, with a Gospel edge. GOLDEN AVATAR may remind one of BREAD, mainly due to Cassidy's soundalike voice David Gates, and also the music is reminiscent of the sounds of THE MOODY BLUES or CAT STEVENS.---AtomicCrimsonRush (Scott Tuffnell)---