New York City singer-songwriter, Raul Midon celebrates the release of his latest album, Synthesis, which hits stores in the US today. Blinded as an infant, Raul was first introduced to music by his father, often listening to the uncomparable Beethoven, Mozart, John Cage, Charlie Parker and Miles Davis. After studying music at a school for the blind and later graduating from the University of Miami’s prestigious jazz program, Raul was hired as a backup singer for Latin-music moguls including Julio and Enrique Inglesias, Shakira, and Ricky Martin. In 2002, Raul moved to the Big Apple to pursue a solo career, playing guitar and writing his own music. His debut album, State of Mind, was released in 2005 on Capitol Records and was produced by industry veteran, Arif Mardin.
Since then, Raul has recorded and produced demos in his SONAR-based home studio using Dancing Dot’s Cake-Talking assistive technology (scripts in JAWS for Windows). The program speaks SONAR settings or parameters to the user, making it easier for visually-impaired musicians to record their instruments, apply effects, and render high-quality, professional recordings. Watch the video below to see how Raul used Cake-Talking in the making of his sophomore album, Synthesis:
If you’re late night TV fan, you’ve probably heard Kevin Kern’s music flowing from your television set. A pianist, composer and recording artist, Kevin’s music was recently featured on the Late Show with David Letterman during a parody featuring smarmy comedian Chris Elliott in The Curious Case of Bennington Butterworth. No stranger to the television scene, Kern’s music has been heard as part of Live! With Regis and Kelly, Oprah, NPR, PBS and more. Legally blind since birth, Kevin relies on SONAR’s assistive technology to record and produce his own music.
Hear Kevin’s latest tracks as part of his new podcast on Itunes, Piano Stories (click on the News tab to subscribe).
As we get closer to this week’s American Idol episodes, we can’t help but note the viewing audience’s fascination with Scott MacIntyre, the young, blind contestant from Scottsdale, Arizona. Each week, Scott plows his way through the competition, doing a stellar job both singing and performing. As one of AI‘s Top 10 finalists this season, Scott will tour cross-country with the other 9 finalists this summer.
While Cakewalk doesn’t root for any one performer, we have a soft spot in our hearts for Scott. In fact, we have worked with a number of visually-impaired musicians, from Ray Charles to ABC’s Extreme Home Makeover’s Patrick Henry Hughes, through SONAR’s assistive technology. We wish Scott the best of luck as he continues with the show.
Follow Scott MacIntyre’s Journey here.