Elektra Records founder Jac Holzman has launched his latest venture, Cosmic Ringtones & Sonic Realms… Your Universe Is Calling.
Conceived and produced by Holzman, the collection includes a series of instrumental pieces composed, performed, and recorded by Holzman’s son Adam, a world-renowned keyboardist and synthesizer artist.
Each piece is inspired by a celestial body or phenomenon of the universe selected by Jac and interpreted by Adam.
The album cover was designed by Bill Harvey, the namesake son of Elektra’s original pioneering art director, William S. Harvey.
Cosmic Ringtones & Sonic Realms is being released on Holzman’s own FM Group Music label, distributed by ADA, Warner Music Group’s independent services division.
Cosmic Ringtones & Sonic Realms is the 21st century successor to the groundbreaking Authentic Sound Effects albums originally created by Holzman in the early ‘60s.
Discovering that there was no professional library of stereo sound effects available for TV, radio, theatre, and other purposes, Holzman decided to create his own.
The result was a 13-album series that went on to sell almost a million copies (and was later rebirthed as a 4-CD set) providing the funds to launch Elektra’s sister label, Nonesuch and Elektra’s move into rock in the mid-‘60s.
“I’m always asking, ‘What’s needed; where are the opportunities?’” says Holzman.
Several years ago, Holzman noticed that tracks from the Authentic Sound Effects series were increasingly being downloaded as ringtones.
Ringtones remain a significant slice of the global digital market, with $200 million in annual revenue, most notably across Southeast Asia Africa, Japan, USA and Germany.
“I decided that having a theme-based collection, created specifically for the ringtone market, was the ticket forward. I’ve always been interested in astronomy, and selecting various objects and concepts from cosmology fit the ringtone world perfectly,” notes Holzman.
“There’s a part of me that can’t resist making records, and Adam was the only person I knew and trusted to interpret this approach. We worked together to create the right sounds for each title and had great fun in the process.”
The CD release of Cosmic Ringtones & Sonic Realms, which is also available on all major streaming and download services, includes a booklet featuring annotation by Holzman, including the origin/story of each ringtone on the 29-track collection – with titles such as “The Big Bang,” “String Theory,” “Solar Wind,” “Jupiter,” “Dark Matter,” “Primordial Cosmic Soup,” “Syzygy,” “Higgs Boson,” and “Pluto Sheds A Tear.”
Also featured is a five-minute suite blending a number of the ringtones into a “Cosmic Ringtones Sinfonia.”
Additionally, these ringtones are ideally suited for wake-up alarms, identifying frequent callers, and specialty radio programming.
The Cosmic Ringtones project is a family affair, beginning with Jac and Adam, a jazz composer/ musician who served as Miles Davis’ musical director and has performed with Wayne Shorter, Chaka Khan, Grover Washington, Jr., and most recently with Steven Wilson.
Jac’s daughter Jaclyn Easton, a noted internet entrepreneur, served as an advisor on social media, while his son Marin, a filmmaker and editor, created a promotional video based on Hubble Space Telescope images.
Jac’s grandson, Russell Holzman, a graduate of New England Conservatory of Music, is handling social media marketing.
After founding Elektra in 1950, Holzman not only signed such seminal artists as Judy Collins, Love, The Doors, Harry Chapin, Carly Simon, Bread, the Stooges, and Queen but created a range of non-mainstream projects, including albums devoted to TV/film cue music, Morse code training, home hi-fi system calibration, and, most notably, the 1967 release, The Zodiac Cosmic Sounds, with each track inspired by one of the twelve astrological signs.Music Business Worldwide