Saturday, February 13, 2010

Hesperus - Crossing Over 1987


Scott Reiss - director, recorders, hammered dulcimer, Arabic Percussion

Tina Chancey - fiddle, vielle, rebec, kamenj

Bruce Hutton - banjo, mandolin, mouth bow, mountain dulcimer

Mike Seeger - guitar, banjo, guitar, fiddle

Hesperus plays early music, folk music, and various combinations of the two. It presents European medieval, renaissance and baroque music; cultural portraits mixing early and traditional music of a particular country or region, and crossover programs fusing medieval, renaissance, Appalachian, gospel, blues, Cajun and Irish styles. We often partner with musicians from other traditions: Appalachian, Celtic, Sephardic, Cajun, blues, Andean, and African.

If you like this album, I would strongly suggest purchasing a cross-over album the group has done called Patchwork. It would be better to directly purchase from their website, but if you must, there is an album called For No Good Reason At All that I think is essentially the same as Patchwork. it is available for download on CD Baby.

Friday, February 5, 2010

The Kennedy Center

The Kennedy Center, located on the banks of the Potomac River near the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., opened to the public in September 1971. But its roots date back to 1958, when President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed bipartisan legislation creating a National Cultural Center. To honor Eisenhower's vision for such a facility, one of the Kennedy Center's theaters is named for him.

Unfortunately, I found out about the Kennedy Center in a souring sort of way. I came across it when I was reading through one of the obituaries for Mike Seeger. That being said, There was a performance on the webpage for the center and it was great. It was one he had done at the ccenter in April of 2003. After watching this, I wanted to see what sorts of other artists had played there, so i did a few searches and came up with a performance by another one of my favorite musicians, Bruce Hutton. For those of you unfamiliar with his style, he plays old-time music with a variety of instruments including but not limited to the banjo, ukulele, autoharp, mouth bow, mandolin, guitar, etc. The video quality for these videos are not the greatest, but the sound quality is fine and the performance more than make up for this. Both these are definitely worth checking out.

Mike Seeger's Performance

Bruce Hutton's Performance