JFS #213 The Michael Omartian Interview



As I continue to wade deeper into how real music is made I have stumbled across cats who were masters of all trades and helped the music grow both sonically and substantively.

By this I mean they had the chops to play across the entire musical spectrum, they had gods gifts of love to feel the music. To swing from Rock to Bach to Soul.

My guest is one of the cats with huge chops and great feel. Except my guest today is different in that his trades expand far beyond the keyboards. He is one of the most prolific arrangers of strings, of horns of voices. He was one of the early pioneers of The Arp Synthesizer and played those emblematic funky fender Rhodes on so many iconic albums. Coming from the Midwest my guest came to Southern California after crusading on Campus for Christ and became the go to studio keyboardist for any artist no matter how accomplished. Katy Lied, I was half way crucified, on the other side with The Four Tops or knowing a Woman's Work is never done with Edie Sands. He helped create We Are The World with compadre Quincy Jones when this host was just 7 years old. His melodic groove was so conducive to music it stretched from Christian Rock to Boz Scaggs to Loggins and Mussina or driving

It was during this time as an in demand studio musician that he joined the stealth Christian label Myrrh and made several albums that features a stormy mix of  ballads and blues with David Kemper galloping in on a White Horse. These albums had a rhythm heritage of Ed Greene and Wilton Felder so the grooves were pulsating with funk and soul holding it down while the messages of a inclusivity was being promoted.

My guest was busy making music history and trying to balance the gross excesses of human desire. Desires that our creator could never give us. That's not life. Life is taking your gifts and cultivating them and ultimately actualizing them which is what this host is doing right now. Michael Omartian welcome to the JFS


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