"Thank you for a wonderful performance ... as close to perfect as it gets, from delivery to song selection to original writing to intonation and arrangements..." Neal Weiss, Whaling City Sounds "...you put on an incredible and memorable performance. There was a great vibe and our customers couldn't get enough." Jarrett Oliveri, Whole Foods, Winston-Salem, NC
" ... so entertaining, full of energy and uplifting!" Christine O'Brien, Jefferson Township Public Library, Oak Ridge, NJ
"... Singing with passion and joy...Too Human put smiles on our faces ..." Richard Fox, WCUW CrossTracks
"Too Human offers up some of the best darned songs you have ever heard, played with a depth of soul you rarely hear." Dave Fishken, host - Sit 'N Bull Concert Series
"Too Human was a delight ... Their performance was wonderful and the audience loved them." Jane Clark, Program Coordinator, Ossining Library, Ossining, NY
"Thank you so much for your wonderful performance ... I had no idea how great you would all sound in our galleries ... what a treat!!" Margaret Moulton, Manager, Public Programs, Hudson River Museum, Yonkers, NY
"Roger and Ellen are the best. They create music with spontaneity and joy. Their music is a work of art; gentle motifs, a splash of color and texture then just when it seems ready to go, they add a twist or a twinkle and tada! it is music! There is humor and tenderness and depth." Karen Glass, Storyteller
"...you put on an incredible and memorable performance. There was a great vibe and our customers couldn't get enough." Jarrett Oliveri, Whole Foods, Winston-Salem, NC
This just in. We've got a song we wrote with Margo Schepart in an upcoming Ralph Macchio film called "Lost Cat Corona." Also one of our instrumental pieces - a Cha Cha called Orange Dress is in the movie, "Fairhaven," starring Chris Messina and Sarah Paulsen, available on Netflix.
We've got a new video collage to give you a taste - Too Human Live at the Wilmington Library in Wilmington, MA.
Hailing from New York, both Ellen and Roger have had music in their lives from a very early age. Roger was studying accordion by the time he was 5 and Ellen was harmonizing by the age of 3. Over the years they both explored different musical genres and instruments, but what remained constant was singing, the song and the passion.
They eventually became professional songwriters in Los Angeles, on staff with publishing giant Warner/Chappell Music, where they had their songs covered by a broad spectrum of recording artists including Cher, Pat Benatar, Teddy Pendergrass, Martha Davis (of the Motels), Angela Bofill, Agnetha Foltskog (of ABBA), Anne Murray, Nancy Wilson, and Ramsey Lewis. And their songs have been heard on TV shows including Fame, General Hospital and As The World Turns.
But after a while they decided to give up the mainstream corporate music world, moved back east and became Too Human.
Too Human -What do they sound like?
Ask them what kind of music they play and they will answer, "Good music with a lot of heart." You still want to narrow it down? Okay - they cover jazz standards from the American Songbook, but with a fresh interpretation that brings new life to those classic songs. And their songwriting influences are Paul Simon, Smokey Robinson, Joni Mitchell, Buck Owens, Duke Ellington, Thom Bell, Carole King, Cole Porter and the Gershwins - from jazz and blues to pop to R&B. With vocals, guitar, percussion and, on occasion, upright bass they have a jazzy / bluesy feel with a lot of heart. Ellen's earthy voice combines perfectly with Roger's unusual percussion style and stirring vocals. Sweet harmonies, unusual arrangements and Roger's famous mouth trombone are the musical elements that frame their performance. But what drives their work is their on-stage chemistry. High quality musicianship with humor and passion, totally in sync with each other, they create a strong and intimate atmosphere.
They have opened for or shared the stage with 10,000 Maniacs, Janis Ian, Martin Sexton, Livingston Taylor, Kenny Rankin, Kim & Reggie Harris, Susan Werner, Jack Williams, Les Sampou, David Amram, Dave's True Story, Dean Friedman, and Sloan Wainwright. And some past performance highlights include the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, Mechanics Hall in Worcester, MA, The Bottom Line in NYC, Bushnell Theater in Hartford, CT and Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs, NY. They have also appeared live as featured artists on WFUV with Meg Griffin and John Platt, WXPN with Gene Shay, WRPI with Sonny Ochs, WCUW with Richard Fox, WFDU with Ron Olesko, WVIA with George Graham, WKZE with Frank Matheis, WWUH with Ed McKeon, WHUS with Susan Forbes Hanson and John Sloan, and many others.
Their debut CD, From There to Here, was critically acclaimed by Sing Out! Magazine and The Musician's Trade Journal and has gotten national and international radio play. Their latest studio CD, True is also getting critical acclaim and lots of airplay. Says John Roths of KEOS in College Station, TX, "I just wanted to thank you for your CD "True." ... Of all the solicited and unsolicited music I receive each week, every once in a while I get a surprise! The most recent surprise was YOUR CD. I am VERY impressed! ... I couldn't help listening to this entire album and I'm putting it DIRECTLY in 'New Rotation'. This album is ideally suited for KEOS and I know it will get lots of spins on many different shows..." Recording this CD was a labor of love. They worked hard to capture their own performances and sweeten them with tasty licks from some great players: Dave Mattacks on drums (of Fairport Convention, Richard Thompson, Paul McCartney, Mary Chapin Carpenter, etc., etc.) Mike Rivard (Jennifer Kimball, the Story) and Marty Ballou (Duke Robillard, John Hammond) on upright bass; Marty Walsh (Supertramp, LeAnn Rimes) on additional guitars, mandolin, and bass; and Deni Bonet (Sarah McLachlan, Robin Hitchcock, etc.) on strings.
They also have two live CDs, Live On Tour with more originals and Standards Live with an upright bass doing a selection of Jazz Standards from the American Songbook.
A track from True, "New Surrender," was chosen to be included on the 2nd compilation CD release from
the Garland Appeal. The Garland Appeal was established with the support of Paul McCartney to honor
the memory of Linda McCartney and raise funds for cancer research and prevention. The first Garland
Appeal release, A Garland for Linda, included Paul McCartney's choral piece, Nova, as well as works of
eight other leading British composers. Too Human is honored to be a part of this project.
Film and Other Instrumental Work
Under the company name, Boenel Productions, Too Human also composes music for independent films, which is completely different from their previous CDs. This is in a whole other realm - atmospheric, eclectic, and totally in sync with the vibe of the project. From orchestral compositions to boppy jazz pieces, quirky little snippets and moody vignettes, their music becomes an integral part of a film, creating tension and intensity, sweetness and sensitivity or whatever meets the needs of the project. Their extensive experience in the studio has given them the skills to produce a soundtrack on time and on budget. Their track record in composition and production is based on their ability to go anywhere the story goes. Recent instrumental work includes original scores for projects for writer/director Felipe Soares and also for writer/producer Kat Alix-Gadreau, a CD project for Storyteller, Karen Glass (producing the CD and composing, performing and recording incidental music), and a piece for the dance troupe, Built on Stilts, to be performed this summer in Martha's Vineyard. They are being represented for film and other instrumental music by the Writers and Artists Cooperative (wacbiz.com).