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MP3 Stone Poetry - Into the Great Unknown

Stone Poetry plays danceable historic ballads that mesh science, history and art into contemporary rock music that literate westerners, whether they grew up listening to Elvis or Moby, can appreciate.

11 MP3 Songs
ROCK: Classic Rock, ROCK: Folk Rock


Stone Poetry consists of: Daniel J. Smith, acoustic and electric guitar, mandolin, vocals; Kate Regan Ciari, vocals, percussion; Dan Krza, electric guitar; Kevin Loustaunau, bass; Mark Sullivan, drums.

Produced by Daniel J. Smith, Co-produced by Gil Stober
Engineered by Gil Stober

All songs written by Daniel J. Smith copyright 2004, all rights reserved.

"A people without history is like the wind on the buffalo grass"
-Lakota Sioux Proverb

"If I were still alive today and could choose a soundtrack for this ongoing sonic documentary we call American history, I''d enlist Stone Poetry to write it."
-President Thomas Jefferson

It''s safe to assume that Meriwether Lewis, William Clark, and their buckskin-clad Corps of Discovery weren''t listening to proto rock-n-roll 200 years ago as they traveled across the American West. But what if?
Today, add a drum kit to their resurrected spirit, an electric guitar and bass, maybe a reggae riff here, a bit of Jazz fusion there, perhaps a Southern rock power chord and a pluck of bluegrass, then meld in a chorus of imaginative lyrics, and the sweet harmonization of Daniel Smith and Kate Regan Ciari-and what you''ve got is ... well, what you''ve got, Pilgrim, is a band unlike any other getting radio play.
Stone Poetry plays danceable historic ballads that literate westerners, whether they grew up listening to Elvis or Moby, can appreciate. "The philosophy behind Stone Poetry is to mesh science, history and art into contemporary rock music," Daniel Smith says. "The song lyrics are researched to maintain historical accuracy." The performances are meant to be dynamic and progressive rock & roll with influences of classical, bluegrass and Latin rhythms.
Imagine songs that actually make you smarter. This enigmatic five-some from Bozeman, Montana delivers far greater listening pleasure on cross-country road trips than any book on tape written by a Pulitzer-prize author. It''s contemporary and edgy but kid friendly too. The only thing this CD doesn''t offer is college credit.

-Todd Wilkinson

Meet the Band

Frontman Daniel Smith draws upon an eclectic mix of travels to inform the band''s distinct sound. Born in St. Louis, Missouri, he spent his adolescent years in the Allegheny Mountains of Pennsylvania playing guitar and listening to the musical firmament that was the 1960s. At 14, he moved with his family to the tropical island of Guam where his music career blossomed in rock bands playing military clubs for soldiers on R&R from Vietnam.

Eventually, he found his way to the Northern Rockies and began landing folk gigs playing in clubs and bars along an arc that stretched from the resort town of Big Sky in Montana to the Pacific Northwest. It was Smith''s keen interest in science that pulled him into rocks. In the ensuing years he left the professional music scene, acquired a masters degree in geology, and then started a multimedia business, Earthtalk Studios, Inc. in Bozeman. He was never far away, however, from music, for every day he had to assemble soundtracks for his video work done on behalf of major clients.

Home at night, he continued to write songs. Over the years he''s composed tunes with themes ranging from Galileo to Lewis & Clark to space exploration. Call him Pete Townshend, minus the deafening woofers yet with insightful lyrics and his favorite guitar still intact.

Here''s how Stone Poetry was born: In 2000, Smith ran, by chance, into old friend Dan Krza at a local coffee shop and the two decided to get together and begin to develop a rock & roll stage show centered around the theme of exploration and adventure. And it was then that historic subject matter, such as Clark and Lewis, would ultimately be repackaged into a sort of Bill and Meri''s Wild Adventure.

Soon thereafter, Krza introduced Smith to bassist Russ Barabe and the three became the musical core of Stone Poetry. Later, the band added vocalist Kate Regan Ciari and drummer Mark Sullivan to complete the ensemble.

Coming from both a rock & roll and solo acoustic roots, Daniel loves his guitars. Discriminating audiophiles should note that his arsenal includes Gibson and Fender guitars including a 1952 re-issue blonde Fender Telecaster, a sunburst Les Paul Standard Deluxe, and a Gibson J-45 Rosewood acoustic. For amplification he uses a Fender Deluxe and a Blues Junior for various situations. He plays the J-45 through an SWR California Blonde.

Band co- founder, Dan Krza, was born a Wyoming boy, but opted to exchange blowing dust for mountain streams when he moved to the relative metropolis of Bozeman in the early nineties. Love and adventure led to a 1 1/2-year stint in Thailand with his Peace Corps wife-to-be Angie, but still Montana lured him back.

Dan still has the original instrument he learned to play on long ago (a well-worn Les Paul wannabe named "Fuzzy") but has since augmented his rig with a real Les Paul Studio. The reverb in his Fender Twin tube amplifier has never worked, and that''s the way he likes it - clean, even when the gain on his Mesa Boogie V-Twin is cranked all the way up. He swears by DR strings and Fender medium picks.

Dan''s musical influences are diverse, from the Beatles to Mozart and even a little Brubeck. He is constantly amazed by the infinite possibilities contained within twelve simple notes. His most important musical influence, however, is his late grandfather, who always played from the heart.

Kevin Loustaunau plugged in his electric guitar and started pickin'' bass lines for Stone Poetry fulltime in February of 2005. His favorite musician changes by the day but has to include Neil Young and CAKE and musical influences include everything from bluegrass to funk. Kevin has been studying bass guitar under the encouraging guidance of Eddie T. (bass player for Backburner and many more bands) for six months. Eddie T. recommended and Kevin bought a Lakland 44-02. Bringing a nice tone and a tight sound, Kevin is a welcome addition to Stone Poetry. A native Texan, Kevin grew up in Houston and started his academic career in Fort Collins, CO, where he studied hydrology. Kevin moved to Bozeman two years ago from Missoula where he obtained a Master of Science degree in geology from the other university. Besides his day job as a hydrogeologist for RAM Environmental, his hobbies include skiing, kayaking, and hunting.

And then there''s Kate. Born in New York City, and raised around San Francisco, Kate brings a bi-coastal perspective. Instead of becoming a rock starlet straight out of high school, she first embarked upon a broadcasting career in Colorado and Montana. Blazing her trail as a disco D.J., on-air announcer, and event emcee, she eventually settled in Bozeman. Kate''s added a new dimension to her life-and to the band-by bringing her haunting voice to Daniel''s lyrics.

Finally, a few words about Mark Sullivan: What would any rock-n-roll band be without a wild man on the sticks? Mark holds the distinction of being our one and only true native son. Born and raised in Montana''s Gallatin Valley, he''s been drumming professionally for over thirty years in a number of rock, jazz and country bands.

Mark says: "A friend of a friend of a guy who knew me got me my first job drumming for a lounge band when I was a junior in high school. I sat in one weekend and became their regular drummer playing in lounges and for parties and dances across Montana."

Mark holds college degrees in art and music from institutions of higher learning in Oregon, Montana, and St. Louis. By night, he lets loose, but by day he masquerades as an effete scholar of the arts. Mark plays as a percussionist for symphonic organizations, percussion ensembles, musical theater groups, and serves as a private percussion instructor, teaching youngsters the high art. "I also hold graduate degrees in painting and have worked as a high school art teacher, participated in art shows and galleries, and illustrated many books." Still, his bandmates don''t hold it against him.

So there you have it. You''re listening to our disc. And we salute you.

The History Behind the Lyrics - Stone Poetry interprets rock as far back as the Stone Age. Hundreds of thousands of years ago the first humans used sticks and stones to kill game for food. Now, in the third millennium AD, we are probing the outer edges of our solar system with brilliantly conceived machines that are an extension of our collective imagination. It is our nature to explore. From the earliest Chinese open ocean sailors who possibly visited the Americas even before Columbus, to the Marco Polos, Lewis & Clarks, Sir Edmund Hillarys, Robert Scotts, and Neil Armstrongs, humans have pushed the boundaries of our world and our minds.

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