Keith Greeninger | Wind River Crossing

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Wind River Crossing

by Keith Greeninger

Take a dash of acoustic blues, add some soulful lyrics and powerful vocals, and the result is an amazing solo debut from this Kerrville New Folk Award winner
Genre: Folk: Modern Folk
Release Date: 

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1. Wind River Crossing
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5:43 $0.99
2. Josephina
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4:47 $0.99
3. Catch a Glimpse
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5:00 $0.99
4. Mercy of the San Joaquin
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6:08 $0.99
5. As Far As I Can Tell
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3:07 $0.99
6. My Religion
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5:46 $0.99
7. The Distance We Keep
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5:22 $0.99
8. Looking for a Home
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5:31 $0.99
9. Red Tail
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10. Brokedown Palace
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11. North to Southeast
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
It's not easy to describe Keith Greeninger's music. As an artist his writing and delivery have challenged the traditional descriptions of today's singer-songwriter movement. Audiences and critics alike have been drawn by the soulfulness and imagery of his phrasing and the power of his voice, and are quick to state that Keith has a sound and a musical vision that is solidly his own.

Born and raised in Northern California, Keith has traveled and lived throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico and Central America. His music has been deeply influenced by his work with Native American and Latin cultures, and the scope of his songwriting evokes a feeling that is uniquely western in spirit. In 1997 he was named a winner at both the New Folk Song Writing Competition in Kerville, Texas and the Napa Valley Folk Festival in Northern California.

Keith first started gaining attention on the national music scene in 1989 as a principal songwriter, guitarist and vocalist for the groundbreaking trio City Folk. The group, known for its powerful blend of lyric, harmony and instrumental virtuosity, quickly became one of the prominent new folk acts in Northern California, winning the San Francisco Best of the Bay music award and having their music paired with Bruce Cockburn and Buffy Saint Marie on a compilation CD to benefit Native American political prisoner Leonard Peltier.

In the six years City Folk were together the group released two nationally acclaimed CDs and contributed to numerous national and international projects and recordings. Their music still remains a favorite among audiences, DJs and club owners throughout the folk community.

In the two years that followed Keith took time out from the road to immerse himself in the birth of his first child and to redefine his musical direction. Then, in 1996 Keith was asked to help design and oversee the development of a multi-cultural music and wilderness festival in British Columbia. It was an experience that found Keith living and performing in Canada for a period of time, working with various channels of the Canadian music industry, and building strong artistic ties with Cree and Blackfoot teachers, dancers and singers that have become the center of this annual event.

Upon returning to California Keith began recording his first solo release, Wind River Crossing. This project found him working with such musical legends as accordionist Flaco Jimenez, guitarist Martin Simpson and percussionist Peter Michael Escovido, as well as other fine artists such as vocalist Chris Webster (Ferron, Mumbo Gumbo), bassist Dennis Murphy (Acoustic Alchemy), keyboardist John R. Burr (Maria Mauldar, Allison Brown), drummer Jim Norris (Lacy J. Dalton), and the unmistakable Roger Feuer and Kimball Hurd of City Folk.

Wind River Crossing, released in September 1997, is a rich engaging piece of work that reveals something new with each listening. Form its sweeping title cut to the award-winning finale North to South East this album resonates with the power of the land and the spirit of humanity, a seamless weaving of depth, imagery and passion that Keith has become notorious for.

Mike Meyer from radio station KRVM in Eugene, Oregon calls Wind River Crossing an inspirational CD from one of the finest writers on the scene today. Brian Turhorst, program director for radio station KVMR in Nevada City, California says Wind River Crossing has generated a listener response that is almost unprecedented, and California poet and long time Santa Cruz DJ Steven Meadows calls it a lyrical masterpiece.


Reviews


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Jay Snow

Greeninger has no equal!
After my walk across the country I was introduced to this album. That was in 1998 I wore out my tape of this music and now finally I have it on CD. When I listen to this music it takes me back to the trail and to the people I met and a time. Keith Greeninger's music has no equal.

Kerrville Kronikle

"A musical journey of truly epic and thoughtful proportions"
It was 6:00pm on Sunday 30th May 1999 at the Quiet Valley Ranch in the West Texas Hill Country when the four-piece ensemble led by Keith Greeninger took the stage. One hour later - the verdict - I was helplessly addicted to the music I had just heard. Another of those memorable musical moments had been implanted in this heart - for as long as it dares to beat. It’s amazing how a concert grand piano, accordion, double bass, acoustic guitars, resonator guitar and flute can invest what are already stunning tunes, about life, love (lost and won) and death, with such vibrancy.

Come to think of it, Californian musicians have been the source of the most interesting music on my most recent visits to the Kerrville Folk Festival. Back in ’92 it was Michael McNevin. ’96 produced an introduction to Joel Rafael. At the threshold of the next millennium, Keith Greeninger, a 1997 Kerrville New Folk winner, did it......and how.

Over the ensuing months I’ve played this 1997 album ad infinitum. Some folk around here would probably offer, “ad nauseam.” Based on the foregoing act of repetition, “Wind River Crossing” has ascended to my personal, and rather select, Library of Recorded Fame.

On a number of tracks there’s a hint of Jackson Browne’s music, principally from his fruitful, collaborative period with David Lindley. No copyist, Greeninger leavens his melodies with a dash of acoustic blues and a considerable measure of the rhythms from the land of Baja California, Sonora, Chihuahua et al. Vocally, where necessary, there’s a throaty roughness to Greeninger’s delivery or a heartrending ache that perfectly captures the often anguished situations painted by his words.

Clocking in at just over 64 minutes duration, the only cover on this set is the Robert Hunter/Jerry Garcia collaboration “Broke Down Palace.” Among the supporting players enlisted by Greeninger are Flaco Jimenez (accordion), Pete "Coke" Escovedo (percussion) and Martin Simpson (guitar).

In “Mercy of the San Joaquin” Maria and the unnamed narrator are fruit pickers in the fields of California’s San Joaquin Valley who, unknown to their parents, partake in late night trysts. Their desperate plight is further magnified by the lovers’ seemingly unattainable dream of making sufficient money to allow them to return to their homeland, Mexico. Elsewhere there’s the delightful "Josephina," the thoughtful hymn to mother Earth "My Religion," and "Catch A Glimpse," a call to stop, untie and find a new way to ensure the survival of mankind on this planet.

Quite frankly, all the way from the gentle opening title cut through to the eleven minute closer “North to Southeast,” “Wind River Crossing” is a musical journey of truly epic and thoughtful proportions. Enrich your life today.

Matthew Smith, Folkweb Music Director

A superlative debut!
Wind River Crossing is the debut solo CD by former City Folk member Keith Greeninger. Keith's beautifully rich voice and gorgeous guitar playing shine through on this CD. There is a full band on the album but it never overshadow's Keith. The arrangments are tasteful - never too extravagant. A superlative debut!

Rein

This is just one fine album !
The music of this album has it all.... the beating of the heart, the floating on a stream..... music like a landscape.
This type of music shouldn't be scaled and put into stars, it only requires one's ears to create pleasure & enjoyment.
The natural flow is everywhere around, no dull moment to be found.

Ross Drake

As good as it gets
Last June, against serious competition. Keith Greeninger won the annual troubador contest at the Telluride Bluegrass Festival. Wind River Crossing shows why, despite the fact that whatever category Keith might eventually find himself included in, it certainly won’t be bluegrass. This is a beautiful, highly professional, carefully produced album that reveals the artist—and for once the term really applies—as both a superior songwriter and an extraordinary singer, with a rich, fluid, soulful baritone that is the perfect instrument for his music. Given this solo album’s extravagant quality, it’s something of a shock that it hasn’t been followed by another. Surely it's time.

Mark Johnson

Nothing short of incredible
I had the good fortune to hear CITY FOLK back in something like 1994. I knew immediately that Keith Greeninger was a major talent. When I did get this album I was astonished because I did not believe the CITY FOLK albums could be exceeded in terms of songwriting or production. This is an amazing piece of work. Words cannot convey how incredible this music is. I found myself at 2 a.m. on a dirt road in Kansas listening to the last track with tears in my eyes last week. Rarely does music move me anymore. What a joy and pleasure to find that it still can.