"Happiness is a Warm Guitar" is a mellow instrumental journey featuring fingerstyle guitar, with accompaniments of tasty players Michael Connolly on violin, mandolin, and bass and Orville Johnson on dobro.
"When I listen to Laura, I hear the love she feels for the guitar and the music. She is grounded in the fingerstyle tradition but always adds a touch of her own to her arrangements. I am especially delighted by her original tunes." John Knowles, CGP
A few words about the tunes on this album:
1. Maui Sunrise (Laura Silverstein)
Inspired by the beauty of Maui and first recorded as a solo guitar piece, here I revisit the tune, adding the stylings of Michael Connolly on bass and mandolin. Aloha!
2. Autumn Leaves (Johnny Mercer)
When you are sorrowful, look again in our heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight. --Kahlil Gibran Guitar and bass.
3. Tennessee Waltz (Pee Wee King)
This song seems to bring up comforting memories for many… and its sentiments are still poignant today.
Ever has it been that love knows not its own depth until the hour of separation. --Kahlil Gibran Guitar and violin.
4. The Water is Wide (Traditional English/Scottish folk tune)
"The river that flows in you also flows in me." — Kabir. Though the words of this song express a longing to reach the other side, the reality is that the river is not a barrier… it is life itself, and we travel the river together. Solo guitar.
5. Bereft (Laura Silverstein)
There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.
--Washington Irving Guitar and violin.
6. Gymnopedie #1 (Erik Satie)
If a composer could say what he had to say in words, he would not bother trying to say it in music. -- Gustav Mahler This piece by Erik Satie is a wonderful example of music’s capacity to express feelings beyond words. Solo guitar.
7. What a Wonderful World (George David Weiss and Bob Thiele)
Joy in looking and comprehending is nature’s most beautiful gift. --Albert Einstein The writers of this song, and the many musicians who have played and sung it have understood this. Solo guitar.
8. Grandfather's Clock (Henry Clay Work)
Although the words are about the lives of a man and his old clock stopping at the same time after years of life together, the tune itself is joyful to play. Solo guitar.
9. Freight Train (Elizabeth Cotton)
Playing this tune by Elizabeth Cotton has provided untold numbers of guitarists with endless hours -- and years -- of pleasure. Thank you, Libba! Solo guitar.
10. Windy and Warm (John Loudermilk)
This tune is part of so many guitarists’ repertoires. It’s always fun to sit and play it with other guitar players and hear what each of us does with it. I always feel a little frisky when I play Windy and Warm.
Definition of “frisky:” Inclined to frisk; frolicsome; gay. Solo guitar.
11. Yesterday (John Lennon, Paul McCartney)
“…oh, I long for yesterday.” Never regret anything you have done with sincere affection; nothing is lost that is born of the heart. –Basil Rathbone Solo guitar.
12. One-Note Samba (Antonio Carlos Jobim)
Laura plays mostly a rhythm guitar groove (grinning) while Michael Connolly unleashes his creativity on mandolin and bass on Jobim’s wonderful tune. Guitar, bass, mandolin.
13. Brokeback Mountain (Overture and main theme, “The Wings” by Gustavo Santoallala)
Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlying our hard hearts. –Charles Dickens Guitar and dobro.
14. Over the Rainbow (Harold Arlen)
The soul would have no rainbow, had the eyes no tears. -- John Vance Cheney Solo Guitar
15. Daybreak (Laura Silverstein)
In the first slow moments of awakening, we glimpse a different reality --the one that exists in the region between the dream world and the waking world -- a world of infinite possibility. Solo guitar.