Rick Diaz - Vocals, Acoustic, Nylon, Electric Guitars, percussion Jon Hasz -Acoustic, Electric, Nylon guitars, Bass, Mandolin/String Programming Don Wiseman - Drums, Percussion Rex Havoc – Drums Percussion Tripp SpragueSax/ Harmonica Sharon Whyte-Piano, keyboards, Organ, Accordion Ethan Brown- Piano Steve Baker- Piano/String Programming Background Vocals- Ashley Foster, Samantha Moroney/ Danielle Tucker, Sharon Whyte Violins – Jenny Flynn - Chris Vitas Cello – Stephen Flynn Samantha Moroney - Duet on Merry Christmas From Tahoe, Christmas in Starlight Danielle Tucker-Duet on: FelizNavidad JR Guernsey - String Arrangement on Merry Christmas From Tahoe Produced by Rick Diaz and Jon Hasz For Tahoe City Productions Engineered by Jon Hasz Recorded at After Hours Studio in Ramona, CA Mastered by Paul Abbott/ Zen Mastering Everyone has a favorite song for different reasons. What’s important is that it touches your heart. Away in A Manger, Blue Christmas, Feliz Navidad, Silent Night, Winter Wonderland, have always held a special place in my heart over the years. It was hard to narrow it down to these five. I hope you enjoy our take on them! Talk about a labor of love! I would like to thank each, and everyone,of my musicians and singers for giving me their all. Danielle, we could give Michael Buble and Thalia a run for their money. Thanks Maricela, for helping her with the phrasing. Sam, Tahoe now has its very own Christmas song! We will get free goodies, at the Starbucks in Tahoe City! Lol! JR thanks for the beautiful string arrangement, you made it dance! Thanks to James Burton for the idea of The Elvis Elf! To you the listener, it is my sincerest wish that you find as much joy and entertainment as we did recording these songs. I hope you enjoy our take on some of your old favorites. The new ones well, I hope that someday they will become some of your favorites. I am so blessed to be able to do the things I dreamed about as a young boy growing up in Paradise Hills, California. There are more songs to write, and shows to do. Thanks to Little Jon, and Paul Abbott for making us sound so good. Taylor Guitars, Ovation Guitars, Fender Guitars.( Ramona Music Center, Guitar Center, Alans Music, Moze Guitars of La Mesa, CA) JustStrings.com, for taking care of our needs. Bill Kingman of Lake Tahoe for always plugging my music. KRLT/ KOWL in Lake Tahoe for years of support. It all began in Tahoe for me, my heart is never far away! Finally, I would like to dedicate this album to the memory of Glen Campbell. My big brother, friend, and inspiration! You were there when my journey began, and will be inmy heart where ever I go! Thanks Glen for all the beautiful memories! Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Happy New Year! God bless each, and everyone, of you! Love, Rick December, 2017 My Memories of Christmas Wow! It’s still summer and I’m writing liner notes for a Christmas CD. Lol! Anyone, that knows me would tell you that this is my favorite time of the year! Coming from a multicultural background, Christmas would mean plenty of homemade tamales, lasagna, cherry cobbler, mountain berry pies, and of late the roasted pine nuts that was a staple of the Washoe tribe in Lake Tahoe. Either way you look it, it’s a time of celebration! Christmas to me is so much more than receiving gifts. It’s more of putting a smile on a loved one’s face, let’s go beyond that a complete stranger! We are all related in the eyes of God our creator. I can remember going to midnight mass at St. Michaels Catholic church in Paradise Hills in San Diego. As the years would pass I have celebrated Christmas in California, Maryland, Tucson, Arizona, Julian, California, and finally my favorite place to be for Christmas beautiful Lake Tahoe. Once I got involved in music, I would sing in folk groups at various parishes. Advent was always a very special time for the music group. This would occasionally lead to Christmas caroling in the neighborhood. On one particular trip, Iwas coming back from Tahoe after a few concerts. I stopped by to visit my Aunt Millie and Uncle Sonny Chase, on their farm in Bakersfield, CA. Thanks to my Aunt Mille’s urging, I wrote my first Christmas song “I’m GonnaDecorations Right Off YourChristmas Tree”!“Lord have mercy! What was he thinking when he wrote that?” you must be saying to yourself. Actually, the inspiration came from the Country Bears Christmas show at Disneyland. It’s no longer there, but you can watch it on you tube. I was on my wayor so I thought! I wrote another holiday tune “My Christmas Wish For You”. It’s the first time I have ever heard one of my recordings being played on the radio,it was KRLT 93.9 FM. I was in the Safeway parking lot in Tahoe City. I thought I was going to dance in the snow I was so happy. I remember sharing this with Thurley Burnett who at the time was Glen Campbell’s personal secretary. She told me” This is why you record Rick, never forget this memory!” She was kind enough one Christmas to set it up for me to watch Glen’s Christmas show at Harrah’s Reno. Glen put on one beautiful show and we had the most wonderful visit afterwards. There are no words to describe the joy I felt after his words of encouragement he gave me” You go out there and make me proud son!” My version of Blue Christmas is my homage to Glen and Elvis. The string arrangements are right out of the Al De Lory/ Campbell classic Christmas recordings. The electric guitar solo, well that’s James Burton all the way. I would eventually write more Christmas songs and knew that my first ever Christmas album was inevitable. Having received favorable air play with the first songs, I felt that there was a chance something would click here. I had seven originals and narrowed it down to my five favorite standards to round out the CD. I have had the opportunity to perform a Christmas show here and there, and was encouraged by the response the group and I received. It has been a real labor of love, working on a limited budget. I knew I could not afford the type of arrangements, I was hearing in my head. Thanks to my dear friend, co- producer, guitarist, multi -instrumentalist, and little brother Jon Hasz, we put our creative hats onand came up with a sound, that we felt did the songs justice. This has been done over the course of several years and remixes, etc. Originally Merry Christmas From Tahoe was recorded as a solo number. After working with Samantha Moroney in the studio, and at Mary Star of The Sea parish in La Jolla. I knew our voices sounded good together. I played her the song she liked the idea, and a duet was born. She also helped me out with Christmas In Starlight, she can beheard doing the high harmony on ShakeThe Decorations. The rest of the cast is stellar what can I say. Tripp Sprague, Jon Hasz, Ethan Brown, Sharon Whyte, Ashley Foster, Danielle Tucker, Don Wiseman, Steve Baker, Rex Havoc, Jenny and Steven Flynn, Samantha Moroney, Chris Vitas, JR Guernsey. This is some serious talent here!My Christmas experiences in Tahoe, have certainly influenced many of the songs on this recording. Someday soon I would love to do a Christmas special from Lake Tahoe. I fondly remember those John Denver specials in the late 80’s and early 90’s. I could go on writing forever, but I think I will let you listen to the album and let it tell the story for you. Glen, Thurley, my Mom and Aunt Mille, Bob Matchinske, and others are no longer with us. I know that they are listening up in heaven. These are memories I will always treasure as I go on with my journey. Of all these memories the most important being, this is the birth of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I want to wish you all good health, peace, happiness, and prosperity. On behalf of the gang and myself we wish you a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, a safe and a Happy New Year! God bless you all! Love, Rick December, 2017
April 24, 2017
Recording artist Rick Diaz, releases a new single to radio” I’ll be There When You Need Me.” This is the first single from the upcoming CD album “A Song For All Seasons” to be released later this year. The up tempo popish gospel flavored Diaz original is being released on the High Sierra Record label. It is produced by Rick and Jon Hasz for Tahoe City Productions. A concert tour is in the works, along with special shows with legendary guitarist James Burton. Burton and Diaz collaborated on two of the albums cuts, Saguaro Moon and You Are Loved. The single will be featured in the upcoming feature film “The Long Adventure Home” which Rick will star in. Production is planned for later this year.
The singer, songwriter, actor, guitarist, can also be seen later this year in the feature film” The Playground”. A native of San Diego, Rick got his first break performing at Harrah’s Tahoe. His up tempo multi genre across the board appeal, and easy going personality have made him a hit with audiences both young and old. Rick is backed by a stellar group of musicians and singers including Jon Hasz, Tripp Sprague, Don Wiseman, Toby Ahrens, JR Guerns, Sharon Whyte, Paul Seaforth, Samantha Moroney, Amanda Wright, Chris Vitas, and Danielle Tucker.
Up and coming singer, songwriter, actress Samantha Moroney has just recorded two duets with Rick. “I Thank God For You” for the new CD and the Christmas single “Merry Christmas From Tahoe.” She will be featured in Rick’s upcoming shows. For more info contact Robin Lockwood at firstname.lastname@example.org .Tahoe City Music is proud to announce that 10% of all sales and downloads of all merchandise from Rick’s catalogue, will be donated to the Alzheimer’s Foundation in honor of Glen Campbell. The pledge will run through Dec. 31st of 2017. You can follow Rick’s career on tahoecitymusic.com, CD Baby, Rick Diaz Music Face Book, Rick Diaz IMDb. Down loads are available on CD Baby, Apple, I tunes. CD’s can be purchased at tahoecitymusic.com. “I’m a very blessed and lucky man, to get to do the things that I dreamed about as a kid. I look forward to seeing all of you down the road. Happy New Year and God Bless!”
Tahoe City Productions
Dear Friends, Family, and Fans of Glen Campbell,
In memory of Glen, we here at Tahoe City Music have extended our pledge of 10% of all sales downloads, and merchandise to the Alzheimer’s Foundation in Glen’s honor. I met him when my journey began at 20 years old. Over the years, he came to be like a big brother, friend, and inspiration. I will never forget the kindness he extended to me. A little bit of Glen will be with me as I continue on my journey. In his honor, reach out to a stranger with a word of kindness and smile. This is how I will remember him.
Save me a tee time Glen. You’re singing with the angels now,
Look for us on tour in 2017 and shows with the legendary James Burton are in the works!
Tahoe City Music & High Sierra Records
Downloads and CD’s are available on CD Baby .com. Apple, I tunes , and tahoecitymusic.com. Rick Diaz “My Memories of Christmas “ and “ A Glen Campbell Christmas Tribute” can be seen on you tube and tahoecitymusic.com
(Lake Tahoe DJ)
BK. Who were some of your influences and who do you listen to when you’re at home?
RD. I like a wide variety of music. Currently I’m a big fan of Norah Jones, Michael Buble, Martina McBride, Train, Jewel, Ingrid Michaelson, Dolly Parton, Chris Isaak, and Miranda Lambert.
Thanks to my mom’s collection when I was a young I was exposed to Elvis, Glen Campbell, Herb Alpert, The Beach Boys, The Beatles, Paul McCartney, The Eagles, John Fogerty, Dean Martin, Neil Diamond, Rick Nelson, Roy Orbison, and The Everly Brothers.
I became best of friends with studio guitarist James Burton, who had played with most of the above mentioned. Also Carl Jackson, who is now a producer in Nashville. I met him when he played for Glen Campbell. They have both taught me a great deal about the music business in general. Hands down Glen Campbell was my biggest influence for becoming an entertainer. It’s funny that all three of these guys are so closely intertwined and they have become a huge part of my life!
BK. How many songs have you written?
RD. Close to 600. I’ve co- written several with James Burton, and a friend from high school Tom Brault. Tom is very intelligent and practical, he became a dentist. LOL!
BK. Can a singer make it today, without writing their own material. Let’s say like a Frank Sinatra, Perry Como, or Patty Page?
RD. Great question! Norah Jones writes some of her songs. Whitney Houston didn’t. Dolly Parton does, then you have people like Keith Urban, Miranda Lambert, Brad Paisley, Jewel, and Sting, they pretty much do their own thing. Those singers you mentioned were great stylist, and they had access to some of the best writers, producers, and studio musicians of their time. Not everyone is that fortunate today. Talent is talent, it will eventually rise to the top. It’s harder today to get played on main stream radio. On the other hand, you have someone like Diane Warren who has had hits covered by all of the great artists and groups of today. Burt Bacharach had a great thing going. He wrote for everyone and anyone, for the longest time. He and Hal David teamed up with Dion Warwick for a huge string of hits. Much like Jimmy Webb and Glen Campbell did. If you have your own style like Lennon and McCartney, Henley and Frye of the Eagles, Neil Diamond, Elton John, or a Paul Simon, that’s the ideal way to go. They are pretty much self – contained artists. They sing, write, and produced themselves. One more scenario is a superior talent like Glen Campbell. One of the best studio guitarist and singers of any generation. He backed up any one you could think of from his day. He made his way to the top on the strength of his musicianship alone. No fads or gimmicks there. He’s become a very dear and special friend, whom I dearly love. He’s always gone out of his way to make time for me, and make me feel so special over the years.
BK. How do you relax?
RD. I walk around in a daze at the local mall and then I go see a movie. No, just kidding. I picked up golf in 1997, and love to fish. I play a little tennis, shoot baskets, walk, run on the beach, swim, and take pictures during my travels. For the past six years, I go ride my horse Daisy. She’s been living on a friends ranch in Julian, CA. It’s a historic gold mining town east of San Diego though it’s more famous for its apple pies now. I help my friend Billy Brooking with his cows on his ranch, and we ride in the local mountains quite a bit. I’m working Daisy into a musical act, as well as getting her ready for some barrel racing, and roping. She’s out of Frenchmans Guy, so she’s got some great bloodlines in her. My great grandparents and grandparents were all ranchers so this explains my love for horses and the outdoor lifestyle. I’m most at home and can be myself when I’m in this type of environment. Tahoe, and the surrounding areas are where my heart is. Just finished a new song Tahoe City Days, we just recorded it. It will be released next year and we plan to shoot a video .
I most enjoy performing for people, but by nature I’m a very shy and quite person. I would much rather observe, than be observed. You might find this hard to believe, but I’m somewhat of a Lone Ranger.
BK. Did you ever think of any other career outside of music?
RD. I originally was going to play baseball. I was an excellent pitcher, and a very good hitter. I never saw half of my potential. Sadly, I got burned out by the politics, and B.S. that follow the sport, and my passion began to fade from the game. I majored in drama for a while in college.
I’ve worked on some movies, and TV shows in the past. I will appear in The Play Ground, a film by a very talented film maker Edreace Permal, it comes out this year.
I have two original screen plays Dreams of Gold and The Long Adventure Home that I have a distribution agreement for with Lee Thornburg of LoneStar Pictures out of Dallas, TX. He has become a trusted friend and ally the past 8 years. He’s one of the most positive, and honest people I know. I will be in both of these, and do the soundtrack as well. James and Carl are on board.
Some of my friends like Buck Brannaman “The Horse Whisperer” are involved in these projects. Daisy will appear in both films. Talk about a spoiled horse, she thinks she’s the boss. My friend from Marana, AZ Joe Parsons wanted me to rodeo with him. He’s one of the best calf ropers in professional rodeo he’s been to the national finals 5 times. The entire family rodeo’s his brothers Clay, and Cutter, his kids Joseph, Emily, and Erin. These people are awesome, and they were the inspiration for The Long Adventure Home. I think this sums up what kind of role they play in my life.
This is the adventure I have been on. With the hope to someday have a horse ranch of my own. I’ve had some minor success early on, but the road has been long and hard for the most part. I’m sure that the discipline, and perseverance, I developed while I was involved in athletics. My perseverance is a gift from God!
BK. Who picks your material for you, the record label, a producer?
I own my own independent label, and publishing company, Tahoe City Music, and High Sierra Records, I produce myself. A wonderful and talented young man by the name of Jon Hasz, has been co- producing with me of late. We just finished a Christmas CD, My Memories of Christmas, which will come out. A little later this year A Song For All Seasons will be released. We had some awesome players and singers on both of these. I’ve recorded over 30 songs for both projects.
I’m very proud of these sessions, and the wonderful people that have shared their talents with me. One of the singers on the session Samantha Moroney, Jon and I are producing. No kidding here, she flat out sings like and angel, and has written some excellent songs! I’ve just recorded two duets with her, and will feature Sam in my show. It’s a lot of fun to work with someone, who has such a passion for what they do. I was blessed to have met such lovely people in the music and movie industry who shared their knowledge and talent with me, when I was starting out. I have finally learned to enjoy the journey. No easy feat here!
Bk. Where, were you when you heard a song of yours for the first time on the radio?
Right here in Lake Tahoe. It was the winter of ‘93, I was in the car in Tahoe City, you were on the air when I heard My Christmas Wish For You. I thought I was going to dance in the snow I was so happy!
BK. What’s your favorite type of venue to perform in, concerts film, television, theatre?
RD. I’ve experienced them all, at one time or another. I would give the nod to a live concert with a huge band behind me. This enables me to play any style of music I like.
BK. What instruments do you play?
RD. Guitar is my main instrument. I do know my way around the piano, and banjo some. I play a lot of the percussion on my recordings.
BK. Finally do you sing in other languages?
I’m fluent in Spanish. I know a little French, Italian, and some Native American dialect. I sing a duet with Danielle Tucker on Feliz Navidad. I don’t have the same command of these languages, as I do English. It would be very hard for me to do a song lyric justice. An example here, ABBA one of my favorite groups. They sing in many languages, someone else translates the lyrics for them. We’ll see what the future holds here.
BK. Any final words for the general public?
I want to thank all those that have supported me on my journey. It’s a gift that God has blessed me with. The road has not been an easy one, and many times I was so exhausted, and disappointed, that I wanted to just quit and walk away!
I know my mom, Chris, and Aunt Millie are guiding me from heaven. Along with my grandpa Gilbert Barrios, who taught me to ride a horse, and bought me my first guitar. The late Tony O’ Gorman who took care of me and my horses, and gave me my first rope. Juan Montano, who taught me how to use it. The late Fr. Frank Maguire, for years of friendship, and the many hours we spent together riding horses and sharing our deepest thoughts. You helped me find the real Rick. My pal Bob Matchinske, who performed with me on so many projects. He passed away last year. He would have been part of these projects.
I’ve met some lovely people along the way, like my late Mgr. Bob McClure who opened the door for me.James Burton, Carl Jackson, Richard Farnsworth, Burt Kennedy, Jack Thompson, Glen Campbell, Bob Shelton,
Bobby Hoy, and Henry Darrow, and Don Collier who believed in Dreams of Gold. Hal Spencer, of Manna Music for his guidance and friendship. The late Brian Farnon who ran the orchestra at Harrah’s Tahoe and Parmer Fuller a great arranger and conductor.Have both taught me so much about orchestras, arranging, and life in general! And finally, Phil Everly for that impromptu class on songwriting. You have all become part of my journey. This alone has been a dream come true! So, I say to all of you never, never, give up on life, and keep your dreams close to your heart. I wish everyone good health, happiness, and all of God’s blessings.
Thank you so much for sharing your story with us.
RD. Thank you my dear friend, it’s been my pleasure!