Forest Hill Band, Step On It (Loyd Artists, 1998)

Country is not one of my favorite genres, but even I could appreciate this album, a lively, thoughtful trip through a series of songs stemming from the country-folk sphere of influence. With sings like “Speedos” and “Harley-Jump Boogie”, they exploit … Continue reading

Mark Humphreys, Songs at the Moon (Trough Records, 1999)

Right from the start, Humphreys draws in the listener and kicks this album into high gear with a lively, spirited effort that refuses to let up easily. One of the good things about this album is that Mark Humphreys is … Continue reading

Bill Bourne, Sally's Dream (Ragged Pup Records, 1998)

Bill Bourne has been recording music for roughly fifteen years, sometimes collaborating with such artists as the Tannahill Weavers and Hookahman. He has recorded several duet albums with both Shannon Johnson and Alan Macleod as well as a previous solo … Continue reading

Tom Lewis, Mixed Cargo (Borealis Recording Company, 1999)

Draw yourself a pint, settle back on your wooden stool, and get ready to sing along with this inspired, if not entirely lively, collection of sea shanties, ballads, and choruses. You want this reviewer’s honest, snap judgement? This CD gave … Continue reading

Merlin’s Kin: World Tales of the Heroic Magician, by Josepha Sherman, (August House, 1998)

Merlin’s Kin is a clever, well-researched exploration into the theme of the heroic magician that can be found in every culture around the world. Josepha Sherman, well known for her previous folklore collections, Once Upon A Galaxy, and Trickster Tales, … Continue reading

Merlin and the Dragons, by Jane Yolen and Li Ming (Cobblehill Books, 1995)

There’s a phrase I reserve for rare treasures like this book. “Oooooooooo, PRETTY!” Anyone who knows me knows to just back away, and give me whatever it is I want, when they hear that particular phrase. It means trouble. It … Continue reading

Maiden, Mother, Crone: The Myth and Reality of the Triple Goddess, by D.J. Conway (Llewellyn Publications, 1994)

To put things in perspective, Christianity and its worship of a dominant male figure has been in existence less than two thousand years. In contrast, the female trinity of the maiden, the mother, and the crone is stated to have … Continue reading

Julie Adams and the Rhino Boys, I Don't Mind Walking (Gadfly Records, 1999)

I just don’t get tired of this one. Everytime I listen, I find something else new and interesting buried within its tracks. I Don’t Mind Walking is a masterful blend of well… everything. Julie Adams is a musical chameleon, who, … Continue reading

Faith and Meaning In The Southern Uplands, by Loyal Jones (University of Illinois Press, 1999)

When I first recieved this book, I was looking forward to reading it as I would any book — sit back with a cold drink and a comfy chair and devour the material within. Unfortunately, once I started, I was … Continue reading