American violinist Farzad strongly believes in "the oneness of humanity" and strives to communicate "the commonality of human emotions" through the music he composes and performs. On his latest album, Mirror of Emotions, he utilizes his violin to create music that reflects his emotions in the hope that listeners will discover similar feelings within themselves.
Classically-trained, Farzad makes music that falls into the arena of classical crossover or contemporary classical with elements of Mideastern folkloric (reflecting his heritage), Latin (influenced by time spent living in South America where he was the concertmaster of the National Symphony Orchestra of Ecuador), other world musics, new age and smooth jazz. Mirror of Emotions is now #1 on the national NAV charts.
Some of the tunes on Mirror of Emotions (on Amity Records) directly relate to attempting to create a better world and a deeper understanding between all people. The album, much of it composed by Farzad, begins with "Searching" ("the first step towards understanding"), continues with love songs such as "Thinking Of You" and "Come Be With Me," contains "Conversation" ("dialog is crucial for people to unite, and this music starts with disparate elements that merge at the end"), and features the seven-minute "Why?" ("Understanding is not always possible at the time something happens"). "Come Be With Me" is Farzad’s arrangement of a traditional Persian folk melody. The album also contains three Latin-influenced pieces -- Farzad’s "La Dádiva [The Gift]" ("my interpretation of cha-cha and Bossa Nova rhythms"), and two tunes written by producer Louie Shelton, "Santa Fe Nights" and "Fiesta."
Shelton, a recording artist in his own right, also plays acoustic and electric guitars on the album. A longtime producer and session-musician, Shelton has played on albums by Barbra Streisand, Whitney Houston, Neil Diamond, Tom Scott, Marvin Gaye, The Carpenters, Bread, The Monkees, Joe Cocker, Seals & Crofts, Art Garfunkel, Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight, Diana Ross and many others. Farzad -- who not only plays violin on the recording, but also piano and electronic keyboards -- is additionally backed by bassist Craig Nelson and drummer Tommy Wells.