30 May, 2017

PRESS RELEASE: Roar Electra Debut Album

Roar Electra
Released November 22, 2016 
by Mike Dawson - Synthphonic Rock 
Produced by Mike Dawson and  Taylor Tatsch 


04 July, 2016

First Single "Patriot" by Roar Electra Release July 4

Roar Electra - Album Cover

Roar Electra. Now there’s an intriguing title, one that connotes ferocity and eclecticism. Those are two words that conjure up thoughts of strength and finesse, of arty intricacies tempered by no-nonsense musicianship. Those two words also happen to be the title of Mike Dawson’s eighth studio album.

           Dawson, a respected Texas singer, songwriter, producer, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist, also named his current band Roar Electra, an intrepid gang of talented musicians. Roar Electra features co-producer Taylor Tatsch (guitar, bass, background vocals), Greg Dugan (drums, percussion), Stephan Page (violins), and Dawson on lead vocals, keyboards, and guitars.

            Roar Electra also sports guests Michael Markley, Kirk Powers and Rick Read on bass. Dawson’s New Rage horn section consists of Kim Corbet (trombone), Steve Howard (trumpet), Larry Spencer (trumpet), Lee Schloss (saxophones) and Mitch Paliga (saxophones).

            Chicago saxophone legend Paliga, Dawson’s lifelong friend, wrote the stunning horn arrangement for the album single “Patriot.” Chris Schaff played drums on “Patriot,” while trumpet virtuoso Keith Jourdan impressed with a stellar horn solo. The topper on “Patriot” comes in the form of beautiful vocals from Annagrey Labasse.

            To call Roar Electra ambitious is quite the understatement. Dawson penned all the tunes, some were written during the recording process while others span a decade of conception. Roar Electra bridges the gap separating rock from classical, its sophistication bested only by its unbridled passion. There’s even a four movement classical-influenced suite “Per Aspera Ad Astra” that harks to Dawson’s love of science, space travel and atmospheric film and TV scores.

            Produced by Dawson with assistance and plenty of creative ingenuity by Tatsch (Shadows of Jets, Cut Throat Finches, Gollay), Roar Electra helps Dawson come full circle.“Roar Electra represents a return to my rock roots,” says Dawson. “I think these are the best songs I've ever written, and having Taylor Tatsch playing brilliantly in the studio has been inspiring. I even broke one of his guitars and he didn't kill me. Now that's exciting!”

11 January, 2014




Dawson - We Only Pay For Free

Texas World Music
Dawson - We Only Pay For Free
My eighth album is a celebration of my fifteen years recording albums for your enjoyment. It was hard to pick out the tunes but here they are. Visit ReverbNation now to get your first listen of a very big blast from my past. Tell your friends! Peace and Love - Mike

27 October, 2012

Dawson & Lazo - The Dallas Morning News

A conversation with Mike Dawson of Dallas jazz-R&B duo Dawson & Lazo 

by Mario Taradell, Music Critic 

The Dallas Morning News

Dallas duo Mike Dawson and Lisa Lazo bring a Steely Dan musical sensibility to the 21st century. (Texas World Music )

Mike Dawson trekked his way to Dallas after growing up in Wisconsin, Michigan and New Mexico. He settled in these parts after earning an electronics engineering degree from DeVry University. He’s been here for about two decades, most of it as a music teacher, performing and recording musician and singer-songwriter. Dawson, 50, led rock ‘n’ roll big band Dawson’s New Rage through four CDs and nearly 10 years (1999-2008). In 2006 he joined creative forces with singer-songwriter Lisa Lazo. The pair released the 6-song Dawson & Lazo EP in May.

There’s a jazzy, R&B and pop vibe to the Dawson & Lazo six-song EP. If this were the 1970’s, we’d be calling it Steely Dan. What part of that sound most appeals to you – the jazz, the R&B, the pop or the mixture of all three?
Oh, most definitely the fusion of all those styles. My background as a piano player has allowed me to delve into all of those styles. The Steely Dan analogy is perfect because it reflects the fusion of all those styles that we find in the American songbook.

In an era when radio-ready popular music is so immediate, so fleeting and so incredibly disposable, unfortunately, is there still room for sophisticated musicianship, smooth vocals and songs devoid of any hip-hop?
Because the industry is so fragmented, the way you and I would think of radio is as simply broadcasts, the type of radio that is only through the air. With all the new technologies people seek the music they want to hear. They have to dig more for it. You have to go to the websites. You have to go to the YouTube pages. It might take people more time to find the music that we make. With the jazz influence, that music is certainly not mainstream anymore. If you look for that music, it’s because you love true American jazz style.

You are a music educator teaching piano, guitar, voice, synthesizer and songwriting, to name a few. What do you see in your students that you would call inspirational?
When I teach kids, kids that love to make music and they have no fear of making mistakes, that is inspirational. When you can help adults recapture that sense of being like a kid, that is inspirational as well. This is why I have been an educator pretty much my whole adult life.

With a degree in electronics engineering, and having worked in Texas, Malaysia and Singapore, are you happy to return to music full-time?
Yes. I’m a much calmer person, instead of having to always tow the line. That was a great experience to have those responsibilities to learn how to run businesses, but once I stopped being creative … it was the management side of it that I didn’t enjoy. I am much happier as a musician for sure.

How does the Dallas-Fort Worth music scene support a performing and recording entity like Dawson & Lazo?
Because the Metroplex is such a large and diverse place, there are a lot of opportunities to try your music out and perform it. Texas is always a place of creativity for musicians. You can use the Metroplex as a home base but just about every musician that I know, you tour and perform. Texas is always home base, but you wouldn’t want to derive a career by just one city.

 See the original article here at the DMN Local Music Connection blog:
Dallas Morning News Review: Dawson and Lazo CD