Our Kickstarter program ends tomorrow morning, and as of this post, we have made our minimum! I believe it’s time to share with you some of the music we will begin recording next week.
When we first started our band, the environment, playing opportunities, and the beginning teachers available in our area were largely influenced by bluegrass music. Although we had very little personal experience in bluegrass ourselves, we jumped right in, learning the craft. However, as we progressed, we found ourselves drifting away towards the music we had loved from the start, various world folk music styles, only with a lovely surprise. We found ourselves adding the drive of bluegrass to some of the wonderful tonalities in the old folk music, creating a unique sound.
It was our intention to display some of this natural change in our new CD, and I believe we’ve found the best music!
Greensleeves – With the help of some good friends, we already produced our first music video for this song. Now we’ll jump in and get a formal recording. Originally published in 1580, it is one of the most loved folk songs in history.
Barbara Allen – This will be truly unique! This is not the typical sappy sad song. Instead we’ve made it a driving tune about tragedy of lost love. Barbara Allen has over 100 variations listed in the Smithsonian files, and rather than using the one found commonly in popular music, we will be using an old melody, most recently found in the Appalachians, likely originating from Scottish roots.
Captain Ward – Sean will bring you this old pirate tune. We are using the basic tonalities and words from Child Ballad #287, but decided to place the style in more of an Irish jig. Though the literal story may be fictional, it is likely inspired by the infamous Captain Jack Ward, a pirate from the turn of the 17th century.
Skye Boat Song – This is our version of the old Scottish folk song, first published in 1884, and commemorating Bonnie Prince Charlie’s escape in a small boat. Mary sings this and it’s simply lovely!
Do You Know the One – An original gospel tune by Alex. The style is wholly unique, with a pendulum clock-type rhythmic beginning and harmonies that use a slight Baroque-style counterpoint, with a modern vocal style.
Highland Mary – Composed in 1792 by Scottish poet Robert Burns, this was the favorite song of Mary Ingalls, sister of Laura Ingalls Wilder.
Uncle Pen – Sung by Michael, this song was written by Bill Monroe about his uncle and musical mentor, Pendleton Vandiver. It’s a tip of the hat in honor of the bluegrass giant!
The Butterfly/Drowsy Maggie – The rules say you do not put a slip jig with a reel, but we’ve never been good with rules. Listen to the butterfly fluttering around, then hear it land on little drowsy Maggie, and the chase begins! At the end, Maggie will be tired again and you’ll hear that Butterfly land on her.
Cooley’s Reel/Tarbolton’s Reel – We’ll keep this one fairly close to the traditional Irish reel style, only using 3 finger picking on a 5 string banjo, instead of the more popular 4 string Irish tenor. We have a lovely new Irish tenor banjo now, so future CDs will hopefully have some tenor banjo picking as well!
Storyteller – An original by Alex, this is the title song of the new CD and we can’t wait to share it with you! We’ll use bodhran drum and flute in this one, as she expresses her love of stories.
Tell the Story – (Official name TBA) Original by Cheryl, telling the greatest story. It’s a gospel tune about the life of Christ.
The Last King – A “haunted” tune about Belshazzar, the last king of Babylon and that fatal night when he Award Winning Dissertation Writing – What to Include In Dissertation Writing. saw the writing on the wall. Katie, who loves all things chilling, sings this original song by Cheryl.
Bonus track: Orange Blossom Special – By popular request by many, Sean’s version of this fantastic train song will be added as a bonus at the end of the album.
We can’t wait to share them all with you!