Spinning Lily is a New England-based acoustic band whose debut album shows what can happen when four highly talented musicians who happen to be fast friends get together to play their favorite tunes: an exuberant blending of sensibilities that demonstrates not just a deep love for the music but a close personal bond. They love to play together and it shows.
This CD is made up of sixteen instrumental sets drawn primarily from the traditional music of Ireland, Scotland, England, the United States, and Canada. Jigs, reels, hornpipes, waltzes, and marches all find their way onto the playlist, each one inspiring the same question when the band was considering what to include on the album: "How can we NOT play that one?"
Included with the traditional material are compositions by such well-known contemporary musicians as Jere Canote, Dave Richardson, Charlie Lennon, Vivian Williams, Colin Hamilton, and Ale Moller. Add to the mix three original tunes by the band and you have a delightful medley of familiar favorites with new discoveries.
Spinning Lily is made up of four professional instrumentalists, each with an extensive performing and recording history:
Fiddler Amy Basse is a longtime mainstay of the Boston bluegrass and Irish music scene, much in demand as a band member or leader of sessions. Among those with whom she has performed onstage are Tom Rush, Lori McKenna, Aoife Clancy, and Robbie O'Connell.
Mike Herr is, quite simply, one of the world's greatest autoharpists. Winner of the 1998 International Autoharp Championship and two-time National Autoharp Champion, he has performed and taught at concerts and festivals throughout the US and in England. His precise, graceful melody and harmony picking adds a distinctive feature to Spinning Lily's sound.
Multi-instrumentalist Glenn Scott adds a variety of voices on fingerstyle and flatpicked guitar, mandolin, mandocello, autoharp, and 10-string Celtic cittern. Equally at home with Celtic, blues, contra, old-time American or bluegrass, some of his band credits include Married With Chitlins, The Moose Hill Ramblers, and (along with Mike Herr) The Harpbreakers.
Pianist Jill Smith is a master accompanist whose unshakeable groove, flowing countermelodies and tasteful chord work provide the rhythmic foundation for the band. She is one of the busiest pianists in the contra dance world, playing regularly with such bands as The Gooseberries, The Gnutones, and Dr. Twamley's Audio Snakes.
Spinning Lily is fortunate to be produced by Chris Lannon, whose credits include work with Ken Burns, Celtic Fiddle Festival, Carly Simon, and Peter Wolf.
Bio – Mike Herr
Mike started playing the autoharp in 1982, learning first from Bryan Bowers and David Morris. His main teachers over the years also include Ivan Stiles, Charles Whitmer, Becky Blackley, Karen Mueller, Drew Smith, Mike Fenton and Tom Schroeder. He won the Mountain Laurel National Autoharp Championship in 1998 and 2004 and the Winfield International Autoharp Championship in 1998.
Mike has contributed extensively to the Autoharp Clearinghouse and the Autoharp Quarterly, in addition to teaching workshops at all the major autoharp festivals. He had recorded two celtic instrumental CD’s with Carlos Plumley in WV in the 1990’s - “Gander in the Pratie Hole” and “Hawthorn”, both available on CDBaby.com - and currently is playing with Glenn “Scotty” Scott, John and Heidi Cerrigione in The Harpbreakers, and with Scotty, Amy Basse and Jill Smith in Spinning Lily.
1.Fladmark four-key – D/G/C/F on tracks 3, 4, 7, 9, 12, 13, 16
2.Fladmark two-key – A/E – on tracks 2, 5, 6, 8, 10
3.Fladmark chromatic – on tracks 11, 14
4.Jawharp in D – on track 1
5.Bodhran – on tracks 1, 15