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MP3 Susan Anthony-Tolbert - Chesapeake Bay Suite - Songs of the Chesapeake, With Every Beat of My Harp

Celtic and Classical Harp performed Live on the Chesapeake Bay.

13 MP3 Songs
WORLD: Celtic, NEW AGE: Celtic New Age

Susan is a Professor of Psychology. In addition to college and graduate level psychology courses, she has taught piano at the university level. Over the course of her musical lifetime, which started on the piano at age 3, Susan has played and studied piano, organ, classical guitar and marimba as well as the harp with instructors from Julliard and from the Curtis School of Music. Her musical education included performance seminars, undergraduate courses in music theory, counterpoint, conducting and orchestra. She has participated in a variety of competitions (even won a few), performances and showcases.

Although piano was her first instrument and continues to be an important part of her life, her musical soul lies wthin the harp. Besides writing the Chesapeake Suite for harp, she has arranged several of the Bach Two Part and Three Part Inventions, miscellaneous Bach compositions, the Partita #3 and the French Suite #5 for lever harp. These are printed by her Singing Cat and Mule Publishing company.

These songs, a combination of my classical and Celtic musical roots, come from my life near the Bay over the last 12 years. They come from a time lived near the beauty of the Chesapeake, its tributaries and coves and from the lush grassland and woods of our horse farm. I share this farm with my husband, a draft mule named Mollberry-Margaret, a coaching pony, Seymour Grass, and two dressage horses, Riezi and Baroque, as well as assorted small critters. The dressage horses have taught me how to dance with horses. The music that I have written was inspired by the landscape, the water and the animal life, both domestic and wild on our farm.

In learning to drive my pony, Seymour, harnessed to a gig, I became aware of th various signals that coachman 0f yesteryear used to indicate speed., direction, and directions to pedestrians and to other coaches. I became fascinated with these melodies played on tin horns of the era. Because many of these horns were 36 inches long, they were called "a yard of tin". In playing the melodies and calls on the Celtic harp, they soon blended into my own musical composition.

Sometimes, in working our mule, my imagination would take me back 100 or more years and I would wonder what it would be like to have ridden her back then. I wondered how we might have waited together for my husband on the coach from Kilmarnock. I fantasized how she and I would rest by the pond on the farm near the Chesapeake. I would have shared apples and pears with her from a place at our farm called Mollyberry''s Glenn. I have often delighted at the play between the mule and our barn cat, Puff. At times, it seems like a real dance, an Irish jig at that! One day, while watching them cavort, the melody and rhythm for one of the songs came to me as I witnessed their intricate choreography.

And so, the harp songs on this CD came to me from that mix of imagination and the realities of living near the Bay. They are a celebration of these waters, these places, the towns and coves with the neat names, of the traditions of fine harness driving and of the wonderful animals that have so enriched our lives. S.A-T.

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