Conway - Earth Rising
| Life, Magic and Love
The Four Winds
Little Bit of Loving
on the Run
Gathering of the Kindred Spirits
Blueprints/Preparing for Departure
| vocals, guitars, keyboards,
tin & low whistles, kalimba,
zither, bamboo flute,
samples, programming, percussion
Burt - appalacian
dulcimer - 5
Neil Davenport - samples - 9
Clare Johnson - flute - 5
Everitt - electric guitar -
Simon Styring - electric guitar -
Cooke - double bass - 3, 5
Neil Segrott - bass - 1, 7, 8, 11,
Britton - bodhrans, guitar -
2, 13, 15
Clive Bunker - drums, percussion - 1, 7, 8, 11
Andy Fitzsimons - congas - 5, 14
Burnham - violin - 14
Roger Wilson - violin - 1, 7, 11
- The Strung Out Sisters -13
Easton - viola
Sally Ramsey - violin
Anne Mee - cello
Sally Barker -
5, 12, 14
Dan Britton -
Vikki Clayton -
2, 9, 12
Kate Easton -
Caroline Eling -
Jodi Krangle -
6, 10, 12
Debbie Robinson - 1, 8, 11, 12
Neil Segrott -
Linda Shanovitch -
Baluji Shrivastav -
James Lee Stanley -
Simon Styring -
Roger Wilson -
Zorpinda Zorpin -
masterpiece. A tale of a grand departure of dreaming people.
songwriting, HUGE harmonies, awesome arrangements and that
Conway trademark big sound. Yes this is the BIG album.
"Here folk makes friends with African, and Indian
influences and produces plenty to enjoy" - Q Magazine
feeling of rebirth and moving out of the darkness of Storming
grew as the Earth Rising project went on and as the concept
took shape. CC was taken up in a kind of creative fervour
which makes this album such a special one for him.
As recording progressed a concept formed - of special creative
dreaming people gathering together and leaving on a journey.
Musically and critically the album was a huge success. Earth
Rising marked several jumps in CC's technical and production
skills and remains a landmark album.
Kantner, Alan Stivell , David Crosby, Graham Nash, Vikki
Clayton, Brain Wilson, Jimmy Web, Terry Riley, Buffy Sainte-Marie,
Donal Lunny, The Moving Hearts
Bunker is best known as Jethro Tull's first drummer. At
the time he was playing with CC in Vikki Clayton's band.
Sally Barker is perhaps best known for her work as one of
Roger Wilson is perhaps best known for his work with Martin
Jodi Krangle is best known as a memebr of Urban Tapestry
and for runnign the MusesMuse songwriters resource site. She co-wrote Wherever with CC.
Baluji Shrivastav & Linda Shanovitch are memebers with
CC of Jazz Orient (aka Re-Orient)
The title Age of Miracles comes froma book of the
same name by John Brunner.
Wherever is dedicated to the memory of Chris's father
who had passed away not long before work on the album started.
Gathering of the Kindred Spirits is an collage of
all the vocalist guests - Chris asked them to imrprovise
fro a minute or so in a common key. Others he sampled from
recorded tracks on the album.
Part of the payment Chris made to the key musicians was
fave track -Before I Go
Life Magic and Love
This came out of a recurring dream I had a while back. A
grey spooky-but-nice ghostly lady turned up in the dreams
and persuaded me to leave the city and once in the country
she told me that this is where I should be. I've written
a few songs about it/her - Earth Child (on Sounds Like Rain)
and Call of the Wild (on Just Be Real & Live!) ) The
green message got woven in later. Style-wise I suppose Paul
Kantner and the 70s era Jefferson Starship was the big influence
I wrote this whilst walking round a particularly disfunctional
London, ankle deep in rubbish and more than a little pissed
off with city life. London just didn't work any more. It
was written a while ago and only really came into it's own
when it became a kalimba based song.
Age of Miracles
This is a song about many things - mostly about dreamers.
I got the chorus from a sci-fi novel by A. Bertram Chandler,
the title from a sci-fi novel by John Brunner. The first
verse is about the 3rd World seeing few of the C21st wonders,
the 2nd verse is about old love, and the 3rd about non-standard,
A little waltz tune I'd fooled about with for years
which recurrs at the end. I wasn't well practised on the
zither at the time and it took quite a few goes to record
To The Four Winds
I wrote this a few years ago but rarely played it live.
It mixes each direction with personal memories. East Wind
is the cold wind in the UK. West Wind represents the wind
that took me from the USA to the UK as a child. South Wind
is memories of holidays in southern Europe. North Wind a
fictional lost love from Scotland perhaps...
A Little Bit of Loving
I can't remember much about writing this song to be
honest. i know I wote it originally on the guitar and tried
it at some folk clubs - it was in the wrong key for a while
then was put to one side, whereupon Vikki Clayton said she
liked it when she heard me play it on the piano and the
song was back.
Earth Rising (earth magic/bobby caseys/brittany rising)
The middle Bobby Caseys and 3rd Brittany Rising sections
used to be played at the end of the song I Want Something
when I played it with the Talking Fish some years ago. When
the song was recorded I dropped these sections thinking
they were better heard on their own. I wrote the Earth Magic
section much later.
Run By You
This song just came out of the air - it wrote itself
instantly - to me its about two people with big problems
who come together despite it all. Somebody told me it was
one of the saddest songs they heard - another that it was
Love On The Run
A riff song which mostly came about because of the
new "upside down" tuning I was experimenting with.
The song is about how love used to be forever , now a lot
of folks have to find it when they can and make the most
of it. I had such a fun time playing the guitar solo!
A song written with Jodi Krangle by email - I sent her
the tune, she sent some lyrics back, I changed about half
of them and so we carried on. To start with I thought I
was writing a love song whereas she was giving me the chance
to write about my then dying father. The song was played
at his funeral.
The Real You
A song about a being with a partner with changeable
moods. This wasn't about anyone in particular. Roger Wilson
has a great violin solo here. Alan Stivell was probably
the inspiration for the Celticness.
Gathering of the Kindred Spirits
I got guest vocalists to record or send me 1 minute
of accapella solo vocal in A minor. I wove them all together
over some wafty synthesiser. I love the result - I can hear
them all individually.
Blueprints/Preparation For Departure
The song came out of a batch of weird chords that suggested
to me it might be fun giving it a kind of Brian Wilson treatment.
The verses refer to phases of my youth - 1st verse - my
first house as a child in Michigan. The 2nd - coming to
the UK on a boat from the USA. The 3rd - idealistic student
days. The Preparation outro is a tribute both to Terry Riley
and Jimym Webb.
Before I Go
The instrumental melody was used in The Autumn Land
from my Storming CD - at the time of recording that the
songs wasn't quite finished so it wasn't recorded then.
The words just came from nowhere... It's one of my favourite
songs I've written. Sally Barker does a great job on this.
This little tune I wrote at a restaurant piano years
ago. I suggested it to Dave & Dan as a joke and we played
it first take. I'd kept it on tape from the Storming sessions
and it seemed to find a home on Earth Rising as the departure
Magazine - Rob Beattie
*** Genre Crossing roots rock multi-instrumentalist
spreads his solo wings
Already establishied as something of a boundary-breaking
accompanist with the Vikki Clayton Band, Chris Conway's
fourth solo album takes inspiration froma wide range of
sources. Here folk makes friends with African, and
Indian influences and produces plenty to enjoy, from
the kalimba driven chant of City Breakdown and the dancey
jive of Love On The Run to the swaggering title track.
The backing vocals are a joy (particularly Sally Barker
on Before I Go, and Vikki Clayton on Love on the Run)
and Roger Wilson's violin gives the whole affair a pleasant
n Reel Magazine - Dave White
for the first time, on the other hand, is Chris Conway's
self-described "magnum opus so far", an even more ambitious
work entitled 'Earth Rising'. Its themes of gathering,
celebration and departure are delivered in a kaleidoscopic
patchwork-quilt of sounds, vivid, articulate and moving.
If Conway's debut album was an assured artistic statement,
then 'Earth Rising' is supremely confident music making.
It's to his credit that despite the scale of his ambition,
embracing a variety of fashionable and less-fashionable
styles - Celtic roots, rock, pop, eastern drones, an ecologically
aware singer-songwriter's concerns for his home planet
- the sheer class of his arrangements, and the performances
from Conway and his numerous guests (including Vikki Clayton,
Sally Barker, Clive Bunker, Jodi Krangle and Dan Britton)
results in a sound which is nothing less than exhilarating.
It's no mean achievement, for such a musical potpourri
can all too easily fall flat.
Conway's vocal is the thread which connects all the contrasting
styles and moods, though the variety is consistently complementary. There are some glorious harmonies, thought-provoking
lyrics and plenty of impeccable playing. A splendid collection
which hits the spot, time and time again.
Music Maker Magazine - David Wardle
CONWAY - EARTH RISING Now and again, a CD comes along
that just seems to ‘fit’ into whatever groove you’re into
at that time. That feeling depends upon a wide range of
variables all coinciding at the same point in time, space,
mind, or wherever. For this reason, such an experience
is very unusual, and the moment must be relished and savoured.
This is an exceptional record.
The music fits such a range of moods, emotions and settings
that it is impossible to categorise - and why should we
want to? The overall feel of the music is so positive
in its general outlook and perspective on life that so
far, I cannot tire of hearing it.
Chris Conway has succeeded in creating a record that
is inspirational and complete and I would recommend it
to any-one who has a taste for quality music. Conway
plays a multitude of instruments himself, including guitars,
keyboards, tin whistles, zithers and bamboo flute. He
is ably backed by a talented array of musicians and vocalists,
including Roger Wilson, Vikki Clayton and Clive Bunker.
The resultant sound is one which is full and yet is not
cluttered or overbearing in any way. Conway, who also
produced the record, has managed to concoct a fine balance
between making a CD which is eminently listenable and
yet challenging enough to be thought-provoking.
Conway’s material, which is almost all self-penned, shows
a diversity and sensitivity which adds to the experience.
There are mystical and spiritual influences, alongside
songs about nature, and a critique of modern city life.
Highlights for me are ‘Age of Miracles’ - which sets the
achievements of the human race against the needs of those
who do not share in the fruits of that progress, and ‘Before
I Go’ - which has the line: ‘And I don’t know if it’s
worth talking anymore, when we can read each other’s minds...’
But it is Conway’s love songs which are the most touching.
‘A Little Bit of Loving’ is sung from the heart and benefits
from a simple delivery - with vocals by Conway and Jodi
Krangle, accompanied only by Conway’s piano (Just a smile,
would tear down the wall....). ‘Love on the Run’ is a
song which gives some hope to lovers everywhere - ‘Let
me know that you need me, but don’t ever tell me why...’
Chris Conway deserves to achieve considerable success
with Earth Rising. The problem is, that set against the
insipid bulk of current musical outpouring, it is just
too good. It will probably fail to be noticed because
it does not form part of that mass-produced, and yet utterly
marketable mediocrity that all too often passes for musical
talent. Let’s hope I’m totally wrong.
Tradition Magazine - Dave Beeby
CONWAY - "Earth Rising" A New Day ANDCD33
Chris Conway hails from the USA but I think he has been
resident in England for some time now. The list of people
who have worked with him includes Vikki Clayton, Jo Freya,
members of Jethro Tull, Fairport Convention and Jazz Orient
- as well as leading world musicians including Dr. L.
Sunramanium and Talvin Singh.
He's played many of the large festivals and had some media
exposure. I mention this just to give some idea of the
diversity of Chris's influences and music. These two albums
are very different in feel, atmosphere and content.
Earth Rising is, I suppose, what is called a concept album
- whatever that means. It's his fourth and pretty good
it is too, although on first listening I found it much
too complicated to understand. Perseverance and repeated
plays though have paid off as I find the curious mixture
of sounds somehow hypnotic. Celtic flutes interweave with
Indian vocals and Irish bodhran. Irish reels mix with
ethnic vocals or Chris's delicate voice. Electric and
acoustic guitars mix seamlessly but that's only the surface.
He has obviously called in a few favours as the list of
guests runs to nearly thirty!!! For me this is one
of the more interesting albums I've heard for some time,
as each some is packed with comment and meaning. Definitely
worth a listen.
Finally about Chris himself. Let's just say that the tag
multi-instrumentalist is one of the great understatements.
The list is nearly as long as the guest list on "Earth
Rising". Well worth a listen.
Alive Magazine - Les Macliammóir -
Conway - 'Earth Rising' - Macliammóir's "Album of the
I was recently standing at the bar during a Chris Conway
and Dan Britton pub gig in the wet and mysterious borderlands
of Northamptonshire, when the landlady came up to me and
said "Why aren't these boys famous?" (boys indeed!) Well,
after now listening to this latest album of Chris's on
many occasions and in numerous situations and frames of
mind, I can honestly say that in an enlightened world,
it should bring both fame and, yes, perhaps even a little
fortune for the BOY!
So, is it really that good? I would say so, in fact,
I would say even better! I would say it's seminal. As in fresh, new, different, innovative, the music ejaculates
out of the hifi, provoking, inspiring, pre-empting thoughts
and feelings about things in general and life, magic and
love in particular. Sounds too new-agey? Not a bit of
it! It works on every level. I shall explain.
The title - Earth Rising - and the album cover itself
tantalises and invokes Celtic mystery, brooding anticipation.
Open the cover and discover the cast of thousands providing
the musical support (well about 30 or so) - Dan Britton,
Roger Wilson, Sally Barker, Vikki Clayton, Simon Styring,
Zorpinda Zorpin (!) to name but several, top notch musicians
you may have heard of already. And then others, like Debbie
Robinson, James Lee Stanley and Jodi Krangle, top notch
vocalists you will hear about soon I declare.
The first track sets the scene -
Life, Magic & Love. An ascending modal arpeggio
leads into a craftily structured composition beautifully
punctuated by Roger Wilson's understated violin ……. and
an inventive lyric hinting deeper themes of shamanism
and neophytic conversion.
City Breakdown starts with what sounds like a jew's
harp (no attribution for it) coupled with a Kalimba -
how's that for innovation? Dan's bodhrán backing and Chris's
low D whistling conjures up neo-Afro/Celtic nuances addressing
issues of social degradation and homelessness - powerful
words set against a strident melody.
Age of Miracles, my favourite track - the chorus line
is taken from a science fiction short story - is a classy
thought-provoking ballad with truly beautiful underpinning
classical guitar accompaniment and awe-inspiring harmonies
from James Lee Stanley. You will play this and weep!
Premonition pre-empts the final track, Going - a pint to the first person who can explain the conundrum
contained therein. (Conway excluded, of course)
To the Four Winds gets the full Celtic treatment with
lots of female 'arr-ing' and 'ohh-ing' a la Clannád, together
with an almost Arabic middle eight chant and electrical
storm special effects that had me reaching for my Barbour
jacket! Lucid lyric with hidden allegory, English weather
and Celtic charm - what a combination!
A Little Bit of Loving, a big busty ballad introducing
a luscious new voice that you would die for, (Jodi Krangle's)
really hits the spot. If her voice could be bottled you
would rub it in every night to ease all the aches and
Surprisingly, Earth Rising, an amalgam of traditional
Irish whistle tunes and Conway originals is my least favourite,
simply because I miss Chris's thought-provoking lyrics
- but then, you can't be using your brainbox all the time
'cus it hurts! Yet maybe a clue to the conundrum lies
within the sub-title?
Run by You left me lukewarm the first time of listening,
but as is often the mark of a great song, it has become
one of my favourites. And one of the reasons is the great,
wondrous harmonic voice of Debbie Robinson - she's around
Leicester at the moment, so look out for her.
For me, Love on the Run is made monumental by Chris's
cracking guitar solo and Vikki Clayton's haunting backing
vocal, but listen carefully to another great thematic
Wherever will make your hair stand on end, especially
when you know that it is dedicated to the memory of Chris's
father. This song says it with elegance and unfettered
emotion for all departed dads of the world. It must stand
alone as the greatest anthem to fatherhood - ever, ever
If The R al You was recorded directly after Wherever,
it would explain Chris's rather tight constricted voice
on this one, which has echoes of a sixty's hit you may
remember. (I do, so I couldn't have been there!)
Gathering of the Kindred Spirits is 'cosmic man' and
you'd expect it with the likes of Zorpinda Zorpin singing
Blueprints/Preparing for Departure is another driving
ballad punctuated by sighing female harmonies that somehow
remind me of the Bangles - remember them? And finally,
Before I Go alludes once more to the essence of the
album, the underlying theme of an impending great journey
and the enigma contained therein, wistfully echoing the
So what's it all about? Chris won't ever say, but I think
I know what it is! And, as with all great enigmas, it
hides just below comprehension, teasing, intriguing, yet
still eluding. Unless you know different
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