New Effort By Esakoff

Bruce Von Stiers

Way back in March, I was contacted by Mark Esakoff. I had reviewed an album or two by his world jazz band, Chasm. Mark has a new album out with some of his own styling of music. He wanted to know if I'd take a listen to the new album, which is simply titled …Esakoff..

Not able to resist a request like that, I indeed took a listen to this new album. What I found was an unusual mix of ‘60's and modern rock styled songs.

For this album Esakoff did the vocals and played guitar, ukulele and marimba. He was joined by Chasm alum Michael Whipple on drums, keys and flute. Also helping out was John Wilson on pedal and lap guitar, Zephyr on bass and background vocals and Bodhi Jones on bass.

The album was produced by Esakoff and released on his Sticks & Stones Music label. It has twelve songs.

Sweet On You is first up. It begins slow then speeds up a bit. The song sounds a bit like something from the 60's ala The Turtles.

Found In Paradise has a more modern rock tone to it. The music has a tiny bit of Bowie sound to it. Esakoff lists David Bowie as one of his influences, so it makes sense. There is some really cool flute in the middle of the song.

Home When I Get There made me think of the Talking Heads.

Butterfly Beach is a subtle tune whose music might remind you of America or some smooth jazz music of older vintage.

She's Free has a ‘60's ballad sound to it.

Mystified has some cool, laid back almost Spanish sounding guitar.

Look At Her Glow is a ballad that has a toe tapping beat and some very cool guitar.

Going To Greece has an almost alt folk tone or possibly, in a sideways kind of way a bit of the Allman Brothers

I like cheese a lot. And apparently does Esakoff. He has a song on the album called Cheeses that is pretty humorous.

Somewhere Somehow Something might make you think a little of Herman's Hermits.

Peer Pressure has a toe tapping beat.

Crazy Billy has some fun and interesting guitar.

The final song on the album is My Destiny. Beck is another influence for Esakoff. This final song is a ballad that shows this.

Esakoff's band, Chasm, had a unique jazz sound. They didn't exactly fit into the smooth jazz norm. Neither does this current album by Esakoff fit into any specific rock category. It is an alt rock album but it has more in common with ‘60's styled rock music than today's alt music scene. At least for me anyway.

You can learn more about the album and Mark Esakoff at


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© 2017 Bruce E Von Stiers