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Shady Side’s Own, Maggie Sansone

Nov 10, 2010 09:19PM, Published by Anonymous, Categories: Arts+Entertainment

And I’ve always loved coming across her path at Maryland’s Renaissance Festival each fall, where she joyfully has performed for many years. It comes as little surprise that her newly pressed effort, Wind Drift (release date: 9/21) is a relaxing listen steeped in Celtic melodies and collective harmony; combining Sansone’s deft dulcimer and classical guitar fretwork with the craftsmanship of other local artists Al Petteway (guitar), Robin Bullock (cittern, mandolin), Bobby Read (woodwinds, keys, accordion), and Matthew Bell (bodhran, djembe, cajon). Altogether, they embody the sound of generations past; songs you may dream of hearing in the underbellies of cruise liners embarking on trans-Atlantic crossings from the Old World to New. Or perhaps, Sansone and company take you to the shores of a small lake tucked away in the mountains of Connemara.

Many of the nine tracks, such as the opener “North Sea Crossing,” begin with Bell’s hands striking gentle beats on the skins before the others join in with their strings and woodwinds, one-by-one, until the group hits full stride. Occasionally a track may drift into soothing melancholy, while another could easily provoke a jig (“Little Banshee Set”). “Evening Chai” takes the mood elsewhere—Asia’s Silk Road perhaps—with strong Eastern influence that plays out magically, almost hypnotizing.

The album eschews lyrics, but that’s the hallmark of Sansone; choice musicianship steeped in the tradition of Ireland, with occasional traipses to exotic locales. Wind Drift will take you for a spin; pop this into your stereo’s carousel if you’re looking to unwind or entertain.

To order Wind Drift contact Maggie’s Music at

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