New Music

02020-03-21 | Uncategorized | 27 comments

I started to work on new music a while ago. Fortunately I have a studio building near my house so I can work as much as I want to. Every album since ¡Viva! was recorded and mixed here, with the exception of Leaning Into the Night, and every album since La Semana was also mastered here. Three of the albums recorded here were nominated for a Grammy: Opium, One Guitar, and The Scent of Light. For a number of years I haven’t sent albums to the Grammy folks for consideration and I am not part of the organization, so The Scent of Light will be the last nomination.

Since I am a loner not much has changed for me, at least regarding the recording aspect of my work. Normally my life is balanced by going on tour and being around a lot of people for a duration, before returning to my place. That’s not going to happen for a while so I will concentrate on recording.

A new album is still many months away, but skeletons of several new pieces have already taken shape. I was thinking of sharing one such piece with you. Bear in mind that this is a work in progress. I don’t have a title for the album or for this song, but since files and folders require names I called the folder AfroMenco and the song is called Twitch.. I have been listening a lot to Afrobeats music so I combined Afrobeats and Flamenco into a word. A good place to start for this kind of music is the Apple Music Afrobeats Hits Playlist. Maybe I will curate my own playlist and create a link to that…

At this point Twitch consists only of my guitars and Jon’s bass, some palmas, and programmed percussion. Robby hasn’t added his drumming yet. I like the space and do not imagine adding any kind of keyboards… but it’s early days. Let me repeat: this is a work in progress, an advanced sketch, and it may change a lot during the coming weeks and months… but that’s also the fun part, isn’t it… looking behind the curtain and seeing the evolution.

May this music make you smile and, perhaps, make you dance (or Twitch) in your kitchen or living room. Here is the LINK to Twitch. Be safe.


  1. JaneParhamKatz

    Thank you, Ottmar, for sharing TWITCH. I smiled; then I danced and twitched all over my living room, still smiling. It’s really wonderful music. I liked the four opening melancholy chords, at first all alone, then repeated with you and the palmas, next repetition adding a beat, finally blossoming into the full song. Those four chords relentlessly repeating throughout the whole thing — exciting! “AfroMenco” has added the beauty of musicality to Afrobeats.

    I received LEANING INTO THE NIGHT today. Truly romantic, so beautiful. I thought the pieces by you sounded spectacular with the orchestra. I so much like Ravel, Satie and Villa-Lobos , especially the V-L Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5 for soprano and orchestra. My mother sang it.

    Like you, I’m not greatly impacted by the admonishments to stay at home – I like it. The only terrible thing was having to cancel our travel to Seattle. We would have left tomorrow and had so many things planned to do there. Especially bitter is not getting to see your concert!

    • Mary Giancola

      Thant you, Ottmar! Twitch is another winner! You are marvelous and your instincts are perfection!

  2. Steve

    Listening (and commenting) as a bass player … Jon has a such nice groove and articulation … so very nice … fantastic sound.

    Commenting as a listener : awesome tune … pretty difficult to NOT dance. If I were listening to this in the car, there would definitely be head bobbin’ going on and playing of some kind of indistinct percussion instrument on the steering wheel … :^)

    • JaneParhamKatz

      I do like Jon’s playing!

  3. Elizabeth Escamillo

    It definitely made me smile!

    I shared the love with my friends.

    Thank you!

    Wishing you good health,


  4. dru

    Just listened……I love it, the syncopation and simplicity of it is perfect.
    I can only imagine how it will sound once your finished.
    Makes me want to move, I can’t sit still.
    It feels hopeful and light filled.
    Thanks Ottmar, keep making magic :)

  5. Guy

    A work in progress?! My goodness! Thank you for sharing.

    Hope this version will be part of the new album.

  6. Trina

    What a lovely gesture to share your music like this. I so enjoyed it! The upbeat positivity of your actions combined with the music is exactly what we all need right now. Thank you.

  7. Lori

    I smiled and moved during the song. As I write this, the music is still playing in my head and making me smile. All of this just from a work in progress. It is beautiful as is. Thank you for sharing!!

  8. Richard Straw

    I heard your music on a Chicago radio station for the first time in the early 1980s. I’ve followed your music ever since and have loved it all. Since I live in a rural part of America I have not had the pleasure of hearing you in concert. This is on my radar but, for obvious reasons, I will have to postpone this. Love the new music. Your music and your life is an inspiration. Thanks.

  9. John Suloway

    Wonderful! Thank you for sharing some personal insights too. Looking forward to seeing you again in NYC. Question (following up on the bass comments): Do you and Jon Gagan do this in person or do you share digital files or both?

    • ottmar

      For the last few albums we have exchanged files via Dropbox. I’d say that’s been our method for the last ten years. Jon records the bass, and whatever else he wants to add, like Rhodes or piano, organ, synth, and uploads those files to Dropbox. Then I add them to the session. We do get together to record percussion, sometimes at my studio and sometimes at his. Same with the accordion or trumpet. I have used Dropbox for a long long time and have done a bunch of musical collaborations with other musicians via that service.

  10. Michael Piraino

    Thanks for sharing this, and the news about the next album. It’s a good time to have that to look forward to. Can’t wait to hear your fusion of the genres, but I hope you’ll share the continued evolution of this piece. That would be fascinating to follow. Hope to hear you again in Seattle sometime.

  11. Stephen Doctor

    Thanks OL and JG for the nice composition.

    I still like DropBox for exchanging audio files for sessions, what can I say? It works.

    As far as us working musicians who have a tons of gigs that have cancelled and no place to play them at the moment, this will pass. Looking forward to that. Until then let’s keep composing and recording.

    Thanks for the nice perspectives man…

  12. Henry G

    Regarding AfroMenco (love the term) and the song called Twitch. As one comment went
    “Hah! if you consider that a “work in progress”, ….

    I have to agree that all you need is to add the drums and its a finished piece

    Your Fan – who has every recording (and the freebies). I see you in Rockport MA and have seen you wherever you are in eastern MA

    Henry Girolamo
    Medford MA

  13. Richard Straw

    On listening to this new piece, it’s the spaces in between the sounds that give this such vibrancy.

  14. Luz

    Album and song titles have always fascinated me and how the artist comes up with such? And yes, please create a playlist–I love hearing music that musicians are listening too.

  15. Alain Valodze

    Thank you so much. Generous gift from a generous heart. Be well.

  16. Anthony p Donnatien

    Thank You Ottmar for sharing this really nice Grove “Twitch” I really enjoyed the new sound and the perfect clarity of your guitar, what ever kind of guitar it is I wish I had one! Smiles!
    Thank you for entertaining me for all these years, I saw you. Play with Santana in the early eighties in Tampa Florida. Love you playing ever since, I will look forward to you new album.
    Thanks Again

  17. Deborah Smith

    Thank you so much for sharing! Your music always brings a smile to my face!

  18. Jerry from Wisconsin


  19. Gregory

    Twitch, luv it…….sometimes less is more…….your music and playing is transcending.


  20. Banafsheh

    A lots movement..It sounds lovely your working progress.

  21. Jesus and Jil

    Love it…
    Just like we love all your previous albums ..
    Thanks again for sharing your beautiful gift

  22. Liz in Ohio

    Thank you so much for sharing! This is wonderful as it is! I love the space in it. I’m excited to hear how it evolves.

  23. Terence Nelligan

    The skeletons of your music have strong bones!


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