Honest Touch is a project rather than a traditional band formed by Fofi Maniadaki and Samy Elgazzar and based in Athens, Greece. The project is backed by a five-piece band, the Amadeus Orchestra (in some songs the Philarmonia Bulgarica), the Fons Musicalis Choir and two guest artists, violinist Vasilis Garoufalidis and vocalist Marita Paparizou. The project plays New Age Pop orchestral music composed and arranged by Samy, with Fofi as piano soloist.
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“Our intention is to create instrumental songs that touch the listener in a sincere and emotional tone” Fofi and Samy write in the liner notes of the project’s debut album, “to be enraptured by images created by the balance of continuous beautiful melodies, ambient harmonies and lush, fluent orchestrations. A sort of cinematic Pop music or as we call it Tacit Pop.”
Mastering engineer Vlado Meller (Sony Music Studios) whose credits include albums by Barbara Streisand, Prince, Celine Dion to name but a few, added his sonic expertise to the debut album “Memories From A Dream”. In summer 2005, the album was released on Polytropon Records and distributed by Universal Music. The project started promoting “Memories From A Dream” with appearances on Greek national TV and radio beginning May 2005 along with press reviews in major newspapers and magazines.
A multifaceted name, ‘Honest Touch’ suggests the duo’s wish for a sincere relationship among people, a unity bonded by respect, consideration and genuine love; it was also an inspiration from Michelangelo’s “The Creation of Adam”. Samy’s acquaintance with his muse Fofi in 1999 led to the creation of Honest Touch in 2000. After performing with talented musicians for two years, the band went to the studio in 2002 to record their debut album. In the same year, their song “Luce Lontana” won 1st prize in the instrumental category and 3rd overall in the NCSA Song Contest. In 2006, "Memories From A Dream" was nominated among the Album Finalists of the 2007 Independent Music Awards in the New Age category. Among the judges of these prestigious awards were, P. Gabriel, O. Osbourne, and S. Vega.
The music of Honest Touch is also concerned with political and social issues with the peak of the album being the ironically titled “And A Time For War…!” From the moving themes of “A Lonely Ride”, “Autumn Tear” to the pianistically intricate passages in “Luce Lontana” and “Memories From A Dream”, the album includes upbeat emotive songs such as “Moments With You”, “Dancing Under the Moon” and “Lay All Your Love On Me” by the legendary Pop group Abba.
Honest Touch’s debut album is an attempt to offer a fresh music experience to both existing and new fans. A producer from Taxi.com, the world’s leading independent A&R company, made the following critique: “the music is top quality as well as the production…” Stay tuned with Honest Touch, music that offers a unique sensation.
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