The Sound of Peace
2006 / It’s a Fluke Productions
Review by Kathy Parsons
The Sound of Peace is the debut solo recording by John Fluker, but he is no newcomer to the music scene. The list of albums that he has played on and the artists that he has toured with is very impressive, and he is currently Music Director for Gladys Knight. The fourteen tracks on this CD were composed during the night, Fluker’s favorite time to play the piano. Fluker’s father encouraged him and told him repeatedly that his playing was very relaxing and soothing to him. When his father passed away last year, Fluker was inspired to compose this CD. Primarily a piano CD, Fluker has embellished most of the compositions with synth washes - strings, nature sounds, etc. - but these sounds enhance the mood and are never overbearing. As the title implies, the music on The Sound of Peace is warm and serene, encouraging the listener to float away on the gentle melodies. Also a teacher, producer, arranger, and vocal coach, Fluker’s background in classical, traditional, and gospel music blend together to give him a unique musical voice.
All of the tracks on this CD are beautiful and easy to listen to, but I have a few favorites. “Asleep Beneath the Moon (Part 1)” is very tranquil and also suggests the feeling of wonder at looking up at the night sky and seeing all those millions of stars. “Part 2” of this piece is quite a bit longer and more exploratory - wonderful! “Journey of A Soul” is also gorgeous and oh, so soothing. The warmth of this piece is almost an inviting musical hug that lingers - I really love this one! “The Hollow Earth” is a bit darker and more introspective, but is still very peaceful. The sound of flowing water enhances the mood as Fluker explores the piano keyboard with a bit more improvisation on this one. The title track is much more ambient than melodic, and carries you away on a caress of sound. “Through New Eyes” has a strong message of renewal and hope. “Life Begins” opens with the sounds of birds and the piano and evolves into a lovely soundtrack to spring or any form of new life. The sound on this one is full and lush and conjures up many visual images.
As you can see, The Sound of Peace covers a lot of musical and emotional terrain, and yet the overall mood of the album is quite consistent. It’s a wonderful backdrop for other activities, but opens up more each time you actively listen to it. Give your ears and mind a treat! Highly recommended. It is available from amazon.com, cdbaby.com, towerrecords.com, and itunes.
May 24, 2006
Review by Michael Debbage