Whispering Lion (aka Michael Z) has been producing, recording, and performing Reggae music ever since his 1984 debut release of "You Aint Cool/Don't Blame Your Pain on me".
("One of the very best reggae debuts ever"-Midnight Dread-Doug Wendt).
Here are some of the crucial events in the career of the artist called
" a unique blend of Bob Marley and Bob Dylan" (Dub Missive magazine).
We give our thanks and praises to all the DJ's and fans and writers who have
supported our music through the years.
Read from the top for latest news, to stay update; or start from the bottom to read this page as a bio.
Dec. 31, 2010: NEW YORK ATTITUDE, the latest Whispering Lion album, has been added to the site, as an "online CD" with built-in mediaplayer. This reggae album is only available online and for free! You can also download the MP3s. Plus stay tuned! The fruits of two years of work will be released pver the coming year in the form of 4 more online CDs!
Nov. 16, 2009: MUSIC HEAL THE WEARY TRAVELER, the previous Whispering Lion album, has been added to the site, as an "online CD" with built-in mediaplayer. This roots reggae album is only available online and for free! You can also download the MP3s.
August, 2009: 4 brand new 2009 remixes (incl. dub versions) of 2 Whispering Lion classics have been released in full track high MP3 quality: "You Aint Cool" (never been released on the web before), and "Don't Blame Your Pain on Me". (and.. (much) more to come!!).
May 20, 2007: Whispering Lion's song "THANK YOU" from the REAL REVOLUTION CD was part of DJ Doug Wendt's Sunday May 20th. 2007 Bandshell set-along with a roster of legendary singers and songwriters
January 2007: REAL REVOLUTION album promotion continues, after a long time recovery from an emergency back surgery (sports injury), that made it hard to perform. Wlion: "So I went deep into my World of Rhythm recording studio writing, recording, mixing, and mastering some brand new Whispering Lion tunes and a heap of awesome riddims and dubs. That music will be available soon."
2006: The track "THANK YOU" from the REAL REVOLUTION album, was chosen for the REGGAE EXPRESS 2006 Compilation CD out of Australia. "Thank You" features Della and Ralston Grant (Twinkle Brothers) and Jah Z on backing vox and Hux Brown on lead guitar.
February/March 2006: REAL REVOLUTION has been send to selected DJs and reggae VIPs, and has started to receive very positive reviews.
May 2006: Official release of REAL REVOLUTION.
August 2005: The Whispering Lion finished his latest, fully independently produced, new album: REAL REVOLUTION, and the website was restyled and refreshed to celebrate it.
July 2003: A great fresh 2003 REMIX of DON'T BLAME YOUR PAIN ON ME, as well as DON'T BLAME IN DUB 2003 have been added to the MP3 section. (In 2009 they were replaced by even fresher remixes).
Autumn 2001: Whispering LION has moved World of Rhythm Records and Recording Studio over to San Leandro, California, the new address and phone numbers are: Whispering Lion Music, World of Rhythm, PO Box 4071, San Leandro, CA 94579, Ph: 510-346-5466/Ph: 510-346-LION FAX: 510-357-5763.
May ?, 2001: Whispering Lion Site officially opened. Check out the irie and exclusive special remixes (see next point), also to celebrate the opening. Drop us an email or Sign our Guestbook We'd like to hear from you!
May 1, 2001: Up2Us 2001 REMIX and UpDub 2001 DUB MIX released exclusively on our site as free HiQ mp3 tracks for our friends and fans.
Sep. 7, 2000: Blame Dub and Cool Dance Remix airs on KPRG RAW REGGAE in Guam, Jah Son at the controls, over 16 years from date of first release! Whispering Lion working on new CD; tentative title; "Better Days Straight Ahead".
April 17, 2000: The Whispering Lions's website is at its own domain.
Sep. 16, 1999: The Whispering Lions's new website is (unofficially, under development) open.
1999: RAW 2000 Compilation CD ($9.99 + 2.00 S/H--email us at firstname.lastname@example.org)
"Up2Us" from the TRIBUTE TO THE SPIRIT CD is selected for RAW 2000 Compilation CD. RAW 2000 includes selections from 20 reggae artists from around the world. It was produced by Ruff Stuff Records and Dogtown Productions. Includes tunes from Isaac Haile Selassie (Ethiopia), Nasio (Dominica), Dr. Ring Ding (Germany), Ras Nas (Norway), Jheri Jheto (Nigeria), Reggae Cowboys (Canada), Collington Daley (Canada), Dub Factory (England), Batta (Jamaica), Patrick Junior (St Vincent), Tonca (Holland), Isaac Miller, Rising Lion, Irie Time, Fyah Wyah, Mystic Vibration (all from United States, East Coast) and Cosmo, Root Awakening, and Whispering Lion from the SF Bay Area.
1998: "TRIBUTE TO THE SPIRIT" chosen "Top Ten and Best of 1998" in ISRAEL Reggae Power, 106 FM, "Radio Eschel", Tal "Dr Reggae" Grubstein and Sista Tair at the controls.
"TRIBUTE TO THE SPIRIT" selected for "Top Plays for 1998" in GUAM KPRG 89.3 FM/KUAM 93.9 FM, GUAM, Jah Son at the controls
1997: "TRIBUTE TO THE SPIRIT" CD
This full-length CD was Whispering Lion's first CD and his most ambitious project to date. It contained 13 tunes, 12 of which were charted world-wide on radio stations throughout the United States and Hawaii as well as Portugal, Norway, Israel, Guam and many others. As of Feb. 2001, almost four years after the CD was released, some of the tunes are still being charted! The tracks were recorded in various studios around the Bay Area including Rankin Scroo's Crucial Youth studio, Fantasy Studios in Berkeley California, City Sound in San Francisco, and Lower Guido recording studio in Oakland. Local musicians on the record include Hux Brown on guitar (from Toots and the Maytals), Rankin' Scroo on keyboards and percussion, Ron Rhoades, guitar and keyboards, Bonnie Boyer, background vocals (who sang and performed with Prince), Pete Escovedo on congas, Chris Solberg on bass, Puddu Dawes on flute, Norton Buffalo on harmonica, and Alula on lead guitar. Making her recording debut was Fireball Sistah.
Some of the reviews of the CD:
"The syles of both Bob's (Marley and Dylan) blend nicely, striking an interesting contrast between Rock and Reggae with a bit of blues ... and a lyrical balance between social commentary and lovers ballads. This is a fun album...." (Dub Missive, Orlando, Florida 1997)
"Whispering Lion puts a new slant on politics, love, rock, and reggae. Musically diverse, with tight arrangements featuring full-strength background vocals and a lyrical focus on improving the world." (The Beat, Los Angeles, CA, 1998)
"In addition to seriously accomplished roots, rock, reggae musicianship, Whispering Lion's forte' is his vocal delivery which can switch from a beautifully sung lyric to a chastising poetic phrasing, to self-mocking soliloquies. Unapologetically quirky, rockin reggae." (Reggae Runnins, Baltimore, MD, 1999)
In addition to the musical release of "TRIBUTE", Fireball and Whispering Lion had their own very special release on 4/25/97, as their son, Jah Z, (Joshua) came into the world, bringing much love and his own unique vocal style.
1991: TENDER AND TRIBAL- cassette compilation-not released commercially.
1989: WATCH IT- cassette compilation-not released commercially.
1987: "LOVE POSSE" video selected for "Top Ten Videos" on Soulbeat Television, Oakland, CA. New York City deejays select "LOVE POSSE" as a "Top Ten Favorite Record".
"ROCK STEADY PARTY" ("Party Mix") is the best local dance track of the year..." BAM Magazine (Oakland, CA)
"LOVE POSSE"/"ROCK STEADY PARTY" is a guaranteed double-A- side street it." Rockpool Magazine (New York City)
1986: "LOVE POSSE"/"ROCK STEADY PARTY" (12" vinyl EP) ($4.99 + 2.00 S/H--email us at email@example.com)
This 12" vinyl EP includes 2 tunes and 2 dub versions; Whispering Lion's second release was recorded in Hyde Street in San Francisco, John Cuniberti again at the controls. Local greats and strong DJ and media support helped make this record a Dance Hall success; Joe Satriani played lead guitar;
1985: Whispering Lion made his club debut at Keystone, Palo Alto, opening for the legendary Twinkle Brothers.
BAM magazine reviewed the show and wrote: "Whispering Lion blends traditional reggae with good old American rock n' roll, emphasis on the reggae...the nine piece band features tremendous backing vocals, good musicians and a charismatic lead singer."
Reggae Calendar reviews "Cool"/Blame" and says, "...You Aint Cool features the most imaginative use of female backing vocals I've heard in reggae music..."
Whispering Lion working with Ron Rhoades of The Shakers records over 20 original tunes at Berkeley Music Group recording studio. Only 1 of these tunes ("Over You" from the Tribute to the Spirit CD) has ever been released. Plans are being discussed to release some of these songs.
1984: "YOU AINT COOL"/"DON'T BLAME YOUR PAIN ON ME" (EP) 12 inch pure vinyl 45:$8.99 (plus shipping), cassette version: $8.99 (plus shipping): email us at firstname.lastname@example.org)
This classic 12" vinyl EP includes 2 tunes and 2 great dub versions; these songs were recorded at Berkeley Music Group, Berkeley CA., a studio that Michael Z and Bob Marcus owned. Additional tracks were overdubbed by Ron Rhoades of The Shakers "and a host of local musicians stirring up an authentic reggae rush" (BAM Magazine). John Cuniberti. a producer/engineer who also worked with Soul Syndicate and The Shakers, mixed both tunes at Hyde Street Studios in San Francisco. Cuniberti is also responsible for convincing Whispering Lion to release these tunes commercially. "You Aint Cool" was aired on KRE in Berkeley, CA. with Midnight Doug "Midnight Dread" at the controls. Both tunes got massive airplay in the Bay Area and in New York City; the dub version of "Blame" hit #9 on FM 99, "The Quake in San Francisco and #15 on FM 106 WHBI in Brooklyn , N.Y.