Mary Z. Cox & Yazid | Drumming On the Edge Of Banjo

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Drumming On the Edge Of Banjo

by Mary Z. Cox & Yazid

Exciting blend of Mary Z's Celtic clawhammer frailing banjo with the sound of Bill "Yazid" Johnson's Afro-Caribbean drumming. Instrumentation also includes cello banjo, dulcimette, guitar, bass, pots & pans, and even featuring George Clinton singing.
Genre: World: Drumming
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Rock the Cradle Joe
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3:23 $0.99
2. Coleman's March
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3:38 $0.99
3. Tamlin
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2:31 $0.99
4. Campbell's Farewell To Red Gap
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3:16 $0.99
5. Foggy Dew
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2:30 $0.99
6. Coo Coo's Nest
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3:39 $0.99
7. Snake Charmer's Daughter
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2:42 $0.99
8. Soldier's Joy
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2:36 $0.99
9. Murat's Dream
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2:38 $0.99
10. John Bowlin's Groundhog Strut (featuring George Clinton )
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2:45 $0.99
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes

We believe it's our best CD yet. Afro/Caribbean drumming with Celtic claw hammer frailing fusion banjo. Entirely acoustic with fresh blends of banjos, cello banjo, djembe, congas, mountain dulcimer, dulcimette, guitar, bass, pots and pans, and featuring George Clinton singing "John Bowlin's Groundhog Strut."
recorded, engineered and produced by Gordy Cox.
Folks keep telling us that they listen to this while driving--keeps them alert with good listening. :)

The things we played :)
Goldtone 5 string cello banjo, Lame Horse oldtimer banjo, Gibson RB250 banjo, Deering John Hartford banjo,(the black and gold one) John Bowlin 1865 fretless banjo, (made from a tracing of Mary Z’s left hand) Ken Miller custom guitar, (Bob Cox’s 000) Blue Lion mountain dulcimer, Ron Ewing dulcimette, bowed bass, (Jim Crozier/Tallahassee's finest) djembes, congas, bell, Revere Ware copper bottom pots and pans,(a wedding gift from Ma Cox) snapping fingers, (Gordy Cox) wind chimes from the front porch,(Green Forest Lane) shakers, tambourine, Gordy’s car keys, church bells, George Clinton singing “Old Groundhog.”

The Back Story:

This is not another African roots meets modern banjo cd. It began as an American story--a blend of Afro/Caribbean, Celtic, old time, and a fusion of American music from the 17th to the 21st century.

It began with "The Old Plantation" painting from the 1700s. Two men are pictured playing a banjo and drum for a dance--and we wondered--where would that music have taken them with today's awesome banjos and drums and the freedom to choose their musicians?

We chose Yazid for this project because he is not African--but African American--and his drumming has a heavy Caribbean as well as African flavor. He more accurately reflects the feel of the music in colonial America gone modern--more than current African/American blends. :)

Mary Z’s family roots are Scotts, Irish, English, Hungarian and Bohemian. Her Celtic ancestors came to the Americas in the 1600s and 1700s and her middle European ancestors in the 1800s. We believe we have thrown the feel of this early American mix of music into the cook pot, let it simmer, and—voila-- present day acoustic fusion.


to write a review

Paul Roberts

Drumming On the Edge Of Banjo with Mary Z. Cox & Yazid
I received my copy of Drumming On the Edge Of Banjo today and I'm enjoying it immensely. The synergy amongst the artists and the thoroughly enjoyable variety of sounds from Mary's different banjos, really makes this CD stand apart.

It's a clean, expertly done recording, with Mary's perennial-trademark-insistently-happy-rhythmic-swing shining throughout.

Listening to Mary's characteristically bouncy banjo style never fails to remind me of what this knock-down style is all about. There's a happiness coming through her music that just won't quit.

Mary, thanks for sharing your music (and your heart) with the world.

PauL Gold Tone instruments and artist profiles

assortment of happy folks :)

Feedback from first listeners and customers :)
From Chris Frank of efolkmusic

Brand new from Mary Z Cox,Drumming on the Edge of the Banjo: Mary stretches out, blending Mary Z's Celtic clawhammer frailing banjo with the sound of Bill "Yazid" Johnson's Afro-Caribbean drumming. Instrumentation also includes cello banjo, dulcimette, guitar, bass, pots & pans, and even featuring George Clinton singing, way cool platter

"I keep listening to the Cd and liking it more and more. You musicians
send out such wonderful blessings (and with so little return). thanks so much." ...Paul

"I travelled with two friends to the OHV . We played your CD numerous
times and everybody really loved it! It's a great CD and wonderfully
done. And what a nice concept to combine drumming and banjo. Thanks so much. "
All my best, (Paul Conrad-dulcimer builder)

"Mary, it's as beautiful as I've come to expect from all of your music. I totally love that you don't fall prey to the speed virus that certainly infects me. Tempo is the hardest thing for a musician to handle (for example, we spend a lot of rehearsal time in our band working on precisely that), but you tame that lion like it grew up next door. What this does is to bring out the fundamental beauties of the instrument - it's tonal qualities and near 3-dimensional impact. Now if I could only learn to do that....

Additionally, it was a wonderful original insight to bring Yazid on board. The banjo's percussive qualities are enhanced by his complex rhythmic contributions. It makes me think that the banjo, in it's African origin, was perhaps originally "meant" to be played this way. I was recently told, again, that the clawhammer banjo is ill-adapted to klezmer music - this time because it's inherent rhythms are supposedly not consonant with those found in klezmer. There's truth in that, I suppose, though it's always painful for me to hear. But you and Yazid have certainly found the key, at least in pieces from the old timey / Scots-Irish canon. " Andy rubin

"Very Cool! Thank you! Listening to your album for the 4th time today! " Joe Costa

The new CD came today. It is really great, very entertaining.
How in the world did you get Mr. Funkadelic, George Clinton, on the CD?"
Chris Jenkins (Lame Horse Guitars)

"Of course I had to order one . Wonderfully eclectic I think.
Thanks Mary for being "one of a kind".
Paul Yoder