27 Jan Lee Oskar Releases Landmark Album “Never Forget”
Lee Oskar Releases Landmark Album “Never Forget”
In honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day – January 27, 2022
Harmonica legend/composer Lee Oskar reminds us to Never Forget
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it”
Seattle, WA — Dreams We Share Productions www.dreamsweshare.com is proud to announce the release of harmonica legend/composer Lee Oskar’s NEVER FORGET on January 28, 2022. Composed, produced, and illustrated by Lee Oskar, recorded, mixed and co-produced by Brandon Busch, Never Forget powerfully addresses the atrocities of the Holocaust, while also serving as a stirring reminder that great music is a universal force for everything positive and vibrant throughout society. Never Forget’s nine largely instrumental tunes are sequenced like a soundtrack. The son of a holocaust survivor, Never Forget is Oskar’s musical memoir – Passages Through Music – telling his journey, his and his family’s story — but also humanity’s story.
“The messages here and the theme were the critical elements. I thought in every composition that the melodies and the meanings, as well as the playing, was designed to reinforce that underlying point that we’re taking you on a trip and it’s a trip designed to make you never forget the horrors of the Holocaust. In many ways I see this as my ultimate statement,” Oskar adds and it certainly brings home the message of the Holocaust’s impact, while also sounding notes of hope, warmth and ultimately triumph. With its masterful compositions and magnificent playing, NEVER FORGET stands as a monumental achievement and a cornerstone of his contributions as a player and composer.
The album’s large cast of supporting musicians includes not only guitarists, bassists and drummers, but string musicians, reed players, background vocalists, even on occasion the services of an oud player and a flamenco guitarist. Such compositions as “Last Moments (Saying Goodbye)” or “Liberty (An American Waltz)” resonate powerfully thanks to sweeping orchestrations, soaring strings and evocative horn parts. Lee Oskar’s harmonica lines perfectly drive and anchor every selection. Oskar’s instrumental conception emphasizes delivering his trademark harmonica fills, accompaniment and solos in the same manner as a great vocalist makes lyrics resonate.
The beautiful opening number “Far Away Dreams,” features soaring melodies and arrangement. Two numbers that directly connect back to the disc’s theme, both “Song From Mom” and the title track “Never Forget” feature an intensity and poignant edge that decisively affirm the memories of, on one hand, a family tragedy that should always be remembered, but on the other hand a desire for humanity to never again let that type of horror or ugliness occur. By contrast, the songs “Liberty” and “World For Peace” have a triumphant, celebratory quality that offer a sound of hope and positivity for the future.
Oskar’s mother & her sister, both young teenagers at the time, escaped from the death march coming out of the Stuthoff extermination camp in Poland, and walked across bitterly cold terrain to escape — eventually landing in Denmark. “For all my life the things my mother told me about that experience have remained with me,” Oskar said. “It’s something I wanted to make certain is never forgotten and in many ways that’s always been on my mind and always been a driving force in my work, those memories…”