Paul Tabachneck, CKAY, Trumpeter Swan

Paul Tabachneck

Paul Tabachneck makes his return to Spike Hill after having been Rockethub's resident Takeoff Tuesday artist for October — currently based out of Harlem, Tabachneck has been keeping himself busy recording his successfully-crowdfunded new album, "Two People Made This Mess," with Brandon Wilde. He dropped a single, "Just As Long As You Want Me To," in November, and made a Banksy-themed lyric video for it, with which he proposed to his girlfriend Ana — did we say girlfriend? We meant fiancée. You can see the video, and others, at, and listen to tracks at, but we recommend that you come to Spike Hill and see him in the flesh on January 10 at 8 PM!


As the front doors of the Apollo Theater closed behind her…

She had won her third nationally televised “Showtime at the Apollo” with a stamp of approval that all of Harlem could hear. Applause rang out once more (from a notoriously ruthless Harlem crowd) for the girl from a small, working class suburb of NYC, once again praised in the same way legends like Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, and James Brown once were on that very same stage. It was an unforgettable moment for CKAY, but she would later admit, “It was just the beginning.”

“I’ve never considered myself to be an R&B artist,” she says, despite her ability to captivate almost any fan of the genre. “I’d say I connect with R&B because I play with a lot of soul.” This is no surprise to anyone who has heard her more recent work, as it combines a vocal quality comparable to Adele, with the quirky musical nature of Regina Spektor, and large, epic sounds of bands like Coldplay, Florence and the Machine, and U2. British much? She is also known to put on an English accent mid-show every now and again.

But vibing on UK sound waves is only one interesting side of this very soulful musician. It is also hard to overlook CKAY’s contagious, bubbling personality. Scatterbrained, comical, and very entertaining, when hearing her speak, it is hard to believe the same person could produce such an overwhelming sound with just lyrics and a piano. And these are not simple pop-dance lyrics (which she can do as well), but instead words that paint an image in a listener’s mind, a rich blend of lyrical melodies that leave a listener wanting more.

Her looks don’t hurt either! A mix of Italian and Hungarian descents, this curvy, doe-eyed “bootylicious sex pistol” (as she describes herself while meowing) keeps her male audiences very interested, while at the same time intriguing females with a sexy, fun sense of style - think Russian princess meets the East Village, meets a hot pair of legs. And, of course, she loves shoes.

Heavily influenced by the Divas of the mid-90’s and early 2000’s, such as Mariah Carrey, Christina Aguilera, Beyonce, & Pink, it is easy to see where CKAY gets her ambition to shine. “Those artists were my role models. They set the bar.” It appears they also set the tone for her original style. “I used to imitate all of them, but I think I finally realized that I didn’t want to sound like them,” she smiles as her eyes widen, “I just wanted to be as big.”

And what about these latest records and the inspiration behind them? “I just started playing the piano one day and that’s what came out,” she laughs. “I guess the rock bands I grew up listening to with my dad and brothers made a much bigger impact, musically…” She chuckles again for no reason.

Whatever method lies behind the madness, one thing is certain – a hot, new artist has shed her cocoon and is “na na knockin’” on yet another set of doors.
Who’s there?
A future star. And her name is CKAY.

Trumpeter Swan

TRUMPETER SWAN reemerges in 2013 with a new album, a greater sense of purpose and an expanded lineup. Based in New York – and made up of a core group of musicians with Austin, TX roots – Trumpeter Swan has evolved from a "new musical skin" into a full-fledged project, with sophomore album THE MAGNITUDE OF NOW due out late Summer 2013.

Helmed by Drew Patrizi, who gained recognition as a founding member of the critically acclaimed Austin, Texas-based, indie rock band What Made Milwaukee Famous (Barsuk Records), Trumpeter Swan self-released debut Listen for the Clues in 2010 shortly after relocating to New York. Garnering attention from the likes of Pitchfork and Alternative Press, Trumpeter Swan was recognized early as an ambitious project with an impressive sonic foundation to build on.

At the onset, Austin's music community embraced the debut: Austin Town Hall observed that, "Patrizi has created his own new voice in the genre and created a beautiful album," while the Austin-American Statesmen noted LFTC's "impressive energy and variety" and Austinist applauded the "precious and melodic indie tunes." Austin Sound offered another perspective, recognizing the weight behind the feel-good melodies: "Trumpeter Swan sings about heavy things."

Enter sophomore release The Magnitude of Now, an album that continues to explore and expand on "heavy things" disguised as mellifluous pop songs. The songwriting tests the point at which exuberance and uncertainty intersect — adding weight and levity in unexpected places. Triumphant choruses wrangle melancholy verses. Mood-swings bubble up…then evaporate. Concessions are made. Questions and pleas go unanswered. Not to worry though, each bitter pill is submerged in a spoonful of honey — these melody-infused pop nuggets are deliciously easy to swallow. The "rich addictive jingles and hidden hooks" (DOA) that characterized Listen for the Clues again emerge, this time through a darker, more focused prism.

Since the last album, Patrizi has joined forces with several talented musicians who share a familiar Austin to New York journey– Quinn McCarthy (Bass) & Clay Fain (Guitar) — and by native New Jersey percussion standout Dave Packles.

Online tastemakers note that Trumpeter Swan has created "genre-bending, finger-snapping alt-pop…and by the end, we're grinning like fools…and we need some more of that."

Order Up. The Magnitude of Now has arrived. Here's to hand-clapping, hand-wringing and a continuation of genre-bending indie rock that embraces both.

Thank you for listening.

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