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Escape Music Ltd Presents Circle of Friends Cherokee Moon.



Escape Music is pleased to announce the release date of 22 March 2024 for the second Circle of Friends album title “Cherokee Moon"

The debut Circle of Friends album, ‘The Garden’, was put together in 2021 by Bruce Mee as a tribute to his mother, who died of cancer the previous year.

Consisting of many well-known names in the genre (Doro, Robin Beck, Jeff Scott Soto, James Christian, Robin McAuley etc) this album was only ever meant to be a special one-off. However, there were still a few songs from the past that Bruce wanted to bring up to date, and with a generous helping of originals, ‘Cherokee Moon’ was realised.

Growing up in the 80s, Bruce’s love was for Classic and Melodic Rock, and that was clearly shown by some of the tracks on ‘The Garden’. For ‘Cherokee Moon’, there were a few tracks that he really wanted to put his own stamp on.

The Saxon song ‘Princess Of The Night’ must surely be one of the classic tracks from the NWOBHM era. However, the production back then wasn’t the best so it was decided to cover the track, and to make it that little bit more special, add Hammond organ into the mix. Jeff Scott Soto, who once toured the USA supporting Saxon, does Biff proud with his vocals.

Rainbow has always been Bruce’s favourite band, particularly the Ronnie James Dio era, of which a few songs were considered. But for ‘Cherokee Moon’ it was decided to redo the classic Joe Jynn Turner era track ‘Can’t Let You Go’. The incredible vocals here are supplied by Harem Scarem’s Harry Hess.

The Europe album ‘Prisoners In Paradise’ is one of Bruce’s favourite releases. And having worked with Tanya Rizkala on ‘The Garden’ it just seemed a logical choice to have an actual girl from Lebanon singing ‘Girl From Lebanon’.

Elsewhere we have MSG’s Robin McAuley doing a wonderful version of the Van Zant song ‘Midnight Sensation’ from the wonderful debut. Paul Manzi (The Sweet) does an incredible job on Ten’s ‘The Robe’, an album that Bruce first release way back in 1999 with Now & Then Records.

But it’s just not fantastic covers, there are also 6 awesome originals, with the album opening with the fantastic Rainbow fuelled ‘Starlight’ sung by Robin Beck’s daughter Olivia Dei Cicchi. Robin herself shows up on a duet with Seven’s Mick Devine with ‘Lying Here Beside You’.

Elsewhere, Bruce himself provides the lyrics for the Mark Boals fronted ‘Eternal Love’. Darby Mills returns for the powerful ‘House of Shadows’ and Thomas Vikström supplies the vocals for the Steve Overland (FM) written ‘Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark’. Gathering Of Kings vocalist Rick Altzi performs on ‘Eye Of The Hurricane’, the only song this time provided by the writer of most of the debut album, Mikael Rosengren.

Along with many other well-known musicians, ‘Cherokee Moon’ is a heavier animal than the debut but still retains the melody and sheer power that has become synonymous with the name Circle Of Friends.

All this has been meticulously put together by producer Khalil Turk of Escape Music with a phenomenal mix by Fredrik Folkare (Nordic Union /ex Eclipse)



Track listening:

1. Starlight (Olivia Dei Cicchi) 4:04

2. Eternal Love (Mark Boals) 4:20

3. Princess of the Night (Jeff Scott Soto) 4:10

4. House of Shadows (Darby Mills) 3:57

5. Lying Here Beside You (Mick Devine/Robin Beck) 4:34

6. Can’t Let You Go (Harry Hess) 4:23

7. Eye of the Hurricane (Rick Altzi) 4:27

8. Midnight Sensation (Robin McAuley) 3:57

9. Girl From Lebanon (Tanya Rizkala) 4:25

10. Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark (Thomas Vikström) 3:49

11. The Robe (Paul Manzi) 9:27

Circle of Friends - Cherokee Moon

Release Date: 22 March 2024

CD Catalogue No: ESM385

Barcode: 5 031281 003850

Produced by Khalil Turk for Escape Music Ltd

Mixed and Mastered by Fredrik Folkare

Executive Producer Bruce Mee

Guest Musicians:

Harry Hess - Vocals (Harem Scarem)

Robin McAuley - Vocals (Black Swan/MSG/solo)

Robin Beck - Vocals

Mark Boals - Vocals/Bass (Yngwie Malmsteen / Mike Slamer / Billionaires Boys Club / Ring Of Fire)

Jeff Scott Soto - Vocals (W.E.T/Yngwie Malmsteen/Axel Rudi Pell/Trans-Siberian Orchestra/Journey)

Derby Mills - Vocals (Headpins/solo)

Rick Altzi - Vocals (Masrterplan/Heaven's Trail/Gathering of Kings)

Paul Manzi - Vocals (Sweet/x Cats In Space)

Thomas Vikstrom - Vocals (Candlemass/Brazen Abbot)

Tanya Rizkala - Vocals (Epic)

Olivia Dei Cicchi - Vocals (James Christian/Robin Beck Daughter)

Mick Devine - Lead and backing vocals (Seven)

James Christian - Backing vocals (House Of Lords)

Fredrik Folkare - Guitars/Bass (Unleashed/Eclipse)

Steve Mann - Keyboards (MSG/Lionheart)

Nalle Pahlsson - Bass (Treat/AB/CD)

Tom Croucier - Bass (Life By Night/MTB)

Tommy Denander - Guitar/Keyboards (Radioactive/Steve Walsh/Steve Overland)

Gregg Hart - Guitars (Cats In Space)

Steve Morris - Guitars/Keyboards (Ian Gillan Band/Heartland/Lonerider)

Kjell Haraldson - Hammond (Glenn Hughes)

Robert Sall - Guitars/Keys (Work Of Art/Overland/W.E.T)

Brian Anthony - Bass (Steve Walsh/Lonerider)

Johan Kullberg - Drums (Hammerfall)

Josh Devine - Drums (One Direction/Levara)





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