Two-hundred-year-old American sacred songbooks might not be the most obvious place to go looking for guidance on how to find balance in the fast-paced, multi-cultural, high-tech, war-torn, money-driven, political, world of today.
But Kindling Stone members Chris Moore and Mark Wingate found just that in a bounty of wise words and powerful melodies from two early-American musical traditions: The Sacred Harp and The United Society of Shakers. These traditions (which blossomed during the 18th and 19th centuries and both continue today) respond to some of the same questions that Kindling Stone explore in their own compositions - questions about community, aging and death, love, family, peace, discipline, nature, prayer and meditation.
Kindling Stone’s musical influences are decidedly eclectic - bluegrass, folk, old-time, country, rock, sacred, and several world music traditions are all part of the landscape. Added to the mix are Mark’s collection and interest in early American hymnals, along with Chris’s study of Buddhist and Quaker teaching and practice.
As a result, the eponymous debut recording from this Nashville-based group harkens back to the early roots of the American musical spirit. At the same time, it leans forward into the growing spiritual pluralism of contemporary culture. This is a place of congregation, where the divine is found in the ordinary, and the natural world informs the inner journey. The sound is that of a simpler time - fiddle, mandolin, and reed organ – while the voices sing of the ancient, timeless, poetic, and philosophical.
"The music is austere, calming, evoking centuries of prayer in tiny chapels...offers an uncorrupted witness to something better inside us." - The Tennesseean
“Chris Moore is simply an amazing songwriter” – Dave Palmatier, WUMB, Boston
“Moore’s poetic verse, in particular, is strange and arresting. His spiritual ballad...is a gem.” Acoustic Guitar Mag.
Chris Moore: lead vocals, mandolins, reed organ
Mark Wingate: harmony vocals, fiddle
Sarah Siskind: harmony vocals
Travis Book: bass
Kenny Malone: percussion
Katie Studley: violin
Produced by: Chris Moore
Recorded, Mixed & Mastered by: Phil Harris at Battle Ridge Studio, Nashville, TN