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Ann Sweeten | Tapestries of Time

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United States - Mass. - Boston

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New Age: Neo-Classical Classical: Contemporary Moods: Featuring Piano
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Tapestries of Time

by Ann Sweeten

A Powerful collection of lush melodies dripping with introspection, passion and heady technique. "Stunning performance and episodic composition...dazzling chance taking.." Will Ackerman
Genre: New Age: Neo-Classical
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Afterglow
4:07 $0.99
2. Cavu (Ceiling and Visibility Unlimited)
4:35 $0.99
3. Endless Sky
5:16 $0.99
4. Hypnotique
4:42 $0.99
5. Ventanas Al Mar (Windows to the Sea)
4:41 $0.99
6. Of Clouds and Dreams
5:26 $0.99
7. Send Me an Angel
5:52 $0.99
8. Tapestries of Time
5:33 $0.99
9. The Great Divide
3:48 $0.99
10. The Hourglass
5:34 $0.99
11. Riversong
5:43 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
*Judges screened 240,000 songs across 70 genres

The pieces on this album have to do with time in some concept or other. There may be a direct reference, a captured moment, an isolated experience or inspiration drawn from a particular event, the idea of infinity and limitless possibility. Some of the titles, including the very album title, speak for themselves such as “Afterglow,” “The Hourglass,” “Endless Sky” and “CAVU” (an aviation term for “Ceiling and Visibility Unlimited”) dedicated to my Father, a former WWII Navy Pilot.

“Hypnotique” was written during Hurricane Sandy’s raging wrath. Fortunately, living where I do, we did not experience the severe devastation in NY, NJ and the surrounding areas. Rather, the high winds and dramatic skies lulled me into a cocoon of creativity, effectively hypnotized by the power of nature. “Of Clouds and Dreams,” was written during the February 2013 Blizzard – that powdery white stuff is also pretty compelling to both writers and composers.

In March of 2013, I was vacationing in Cozumel, Mexico and was out driving around the island when we came upon a small hotel, very rustic, no electricity to speak of, but looking out on wild seas and jagged cliffs. It was, in a word, beautiful. Then I noticed the little sign for it, which said, “Ventanas Al Mar” – Windows to the Sea - and I thought it a perfect title echoing the idea of time in the endless, limitless view, it so graciously offered.

Sometimes, the idea of waiting - caged, tethered or bound - is so devastatingly injurious, so monumentally depressing, that it sadly becomes the bleakest tapestry an innocent experiences. “Send Me an Angel” was written for and is dedicated to all Laboratory Animals, in the here and now, and to all those that have gone before, finally free of their unconscionable suffering. It is written from their perspective:

“I tried so hard throughout the years,
To hold to hope through dreaded fear.
I’ve wished so hard amidst the tears,
For simple freedom, strange souvenir.
Angel, Send me an Angel now,
For I’m so weary, Help me, somehow...” A.S.

Let us pray that “there will come a time when the world will look back to modern vivisection in the name of Science, as they now look back upon burning witches at the stake in the name of Religion”.
Henry J. Bigelow, MD

“Atrocities are not less atrocities when they occur in laboratories and are called “Medical Research”.
George Bernard Shaw

“Riversong” is about a place dear to my heart that remains timeless - there long before me and certain to remain long after. Conversely, my memories there, fleeting moments of sunlight framed by the banks of this most majestic waterway, are almost mocked, by the river’s never-ending flow.

“The Great Divide,” which was inspired by a poem I wrote many years ago, speaks to the line between childhood and adulthood. The song “Toyland,” (music by Victor Herbert, lyrics by Mel Leven and Glen MacDonough) states that “once you cross its’ borders, you can never return again.” But my poem, which follows here, actually implies that though there is the psychological and emotional chasm between the two entities of child and adult, the 2 characters in the poem, are one and the same and not really so far apart after all, especially when one is careful to keep alive the magical light of one’s inner child!

The Great Divide

I reached out my hand to the little child
And though she clung to me, I couldn’t cross the great divide.
I see she’s fair like me, has eyes like me
But is blind to whom she’ll be.

Little one, I’d love to come and play,
but through the many years, all my dolls I’ve put away.
Now, go ahead without me, play without a care,
Build your castles in the sand, I’ll picture myself there.

I look to her to find the seeds for all I sow.
She always loves to see me and hates it when I go.
We share our stories and she doesn’t seem to mind,
My castles and my princes are of just a different kind.

Little one, perhaps another day,
I know you’ll come and find me, If I chance to slip away.
So go along without me, play without a care
Build your castles in the sand, I’ll always be right there.

Despite the distance, we’re not so far apart.
I keep her safe inside me, her heart’s within my heart.
We love to laugh and hate to cry. We build our bridges to the sky….
But when my castle burned and all my princes fade
She turns and somehow knows, you get but one parade. A.S.

In life, the hourglass is yours; may the tapestries you weave therein be rich and filled with love,
Ann Sweeten

Performances in order of appearance

Ann Sweeten – Steinway Baby Grand, Model B
Eugene Friesen – Cello (Afterglow, Send me an Angel)
Akane Setiawan – English horn (Afterglow, Tapestries of Time, Riversong) -Oboe (Riversong)
Andrew Eng –Violin (CAVU, The Great Divide)
Richard Sebring – French horn (Endless Sky, Riversong)
Will Ackerman – Acoustic Guitar (Ventanas al Mar)
Noah Wilding – Vocals (Of Clouds and Dreams)
Jeff Oster – Flugelhorn (Of Clouds and Dreams)

Produced by Ann Sweeten and Will Ackerman

Recorded at Imaginary Road Studios,
Windham County, VT

Performances by Akane Setiawan recorded at David Kean’s Audities Foundation Studio in Calgary, Alberta, Canada www.audities.org

Performances by Andrew Eng recorded at Universal Noise Storage, Newburyport, MA www.universalnoisestorage.com

Composed and performed by Ann Sweeten

Engineered, mixed and mastered by Tom Eaton:
At Imaginary Road Studios

Visual Artistic Direction and Photography by Randy Yoder:
RBY Photography, Salem, MA

Manufactured and printed by Disc Makers:
Pennsauken, NJ, U.S.A.

Piano Technician:
William Ballard



to write a review

Kathy Parsons

From MainlyPiano
"Tapestries of Time" is the tenth release from pianist/composer Ann Sweeten. Co-produced with Will Ackerman and recorded at his Imaginary Road Studios in Vermont, this beautiful collection of eleven original compositions features Sweeten on the Steinway B grand piano with several additional musicians adding their own artistic touches. In the liner notes, Sweeten states “The pieces on this album have to do with time in some concept or other. There may be a direct reference, a captured moment, an isolated experience or inspiration drawn from a particular event, the idea of infinity and limitless possibility.” Sweeten has a delicate touch that perfectly expresses the grace and elegance of her music. Although all of the pieces on this album are distinctive from each other, I have found this music to be a wonderful accompaniment to working - and it helped to keep me from tearing my hair out while doing my taxes! It’s the sort of music that is complex enough to listen to many times with full attention yet settles easily into the background while creating an ambiance of peaceful calm. Classically-trained from an early age, Sweeten brings a wealth of experience to her music with her background as a dancer, singer, poet and actress as well as a pianist.

"Tapestries of Time" begins with “Afterglow,” a gorgeous opening that includes Eugene Friesen on cello and Akane Setiawan on English horn. Tranquility permeates this piece so thoroughly that it can instantly soothe and relax, letting the listener know from the first notes that this is no ordinary piano album. “CAVU” (an aviation term for “Ceiling and Visibility Unlimited”) is dedicated to Sweeten’s father. Andrew Eng joins Sweeten on violin, adding washes of sound that are sometimes soft pastels and sometimes more vibrant and shimmering. “Hypnotique,” a graceful and dreamy solo piano waltz, is one of my favorites. “Ventanas Al Mar” (“Windows To the Sea”) is a shimmering piece inspired by a small hotel in Mexico and features Ackerman on acoustic guitar. “Of Clouds and Dreams” starts out as a piano solo but includes the haunting voice of Noah Wilding as well as Jeff Oster on flugelhorn. “Send Me An Angel” was written for and is dedicated to all laboratory animals from the past and present and was composed from their perspective. Friesen returns to add his poignant cello to this heartbreaking piece that obviously comes from a very deep place in Sweeten’s heart. “The Great Divide” was inspired by a poem she wrote many years ago that refers to the line between childhood and adulthood and suggests that the two are really not so far apart when someone is “careful to keep alive the magical light of one’s inner child!” “Hourglass” is the other wonderful, serene piano solo. “Riversong” brings the album to a peaceful close with a piece that includes Setiawan on both English horn and oboe. If you still feel any tension anywhere in your body at this point, you simply haven’t been paying attention!

"Tapestries of Time" is the perfect album for relaxing and putting the stresses of the day into their proper perspective. Recommended!

Raj Manoharan (www.rajmanreviews.blogspot.com)

The RajMan Review
As can be expected, Ann Sweeten delivers the goods on her latest piano music release.

This album features eleven original compositions penned by the pianist and showcasing her songwriting skill and performance artistry. Sweeten has crafted pieces that draw the listener in with their lyrical beauty, and her playing brings them to luxurious life.

Joining Sweeten on this outing are Eugene Friesen on cello, Akane Setiawan on English horn and oboe, Andrew Eng on violin, Richard Sebring on French horn, producer Will Ackerman on acoustic guitar, Noah Wilding on vocals, and Jeff Oster on flugelhorn.

This is another outstanding addition to Sweeten's excellent catalog of work.

Serge Kozlovsky

Writings by Serge Kozlovsky / http://sergekozlovsky.com
The stream of time won't wash away
All that with love has been created

Ann Sweeten is a renowned artist, with her 6 previous albums all ranking in the Top 5 NAR and ZMR Radio Reports. She is also one of the most played modern instrumentalists in North America. The new album “Tapestries of Time” is the 10th release of Ann Sweeten. This album was co-produced by famous Will Ackerman and recorded at his Imaginary Road Studios.

It is important to say one thing, having such a stunning success Ann Sweeten does not stop in her creative work, she goes further and her music becomes more profound, emotional and forms a single whole. I can add here that there is so much poetry in the music of Ann Sweeten. All her compositions are exquisite and bright. Listening to "Tapestries of Time" you can easily plunge in the inner world of the artist, full of deep and sincere emotional experiences.

Ann Sweeten is a virtuoso pianist and her arrangements are truly perfect. The music of “Tapestries of Time” is filled with contemplation and love. The artist plays with great inspiration and some outstanding performers such as Eugene Friesen (cello), Akane Setiawan (English horn, Oboe), Andrew Eng (Violin), Richard Sebring (French horn), Noah Wilding (Vocals), maestro Jeff Oster (Flugelhorn), and, certainly, Will Ackerman (Acoustic Guitar) bring incredible beauty to the music of the album.

I always love the sounding of projects which were engineered by Tom Eaton who is a true master of sound. And the newest album of Ann Sweeten is not an exception.

Without a doubt “Tapestries of Time” will have a strong impact on audience. Listen to the new release of Ann Sweeten and realize that the fabric of time manifests anything that was created by humans as by spiritual beings.

Michael Diamond (www.michaeldiamondmusic.com)

Review excerpt from Music and Media Focus
The subject of time is one that has intrigued artists, musicians, and writers, inspiring them to create reflections of its mysteries. The new album, Tapestries of Time, by award-winning pianist and official “Steinway Artist” Ann Sweeten, is one of these. Like her last album, this one was also recorded at the studio of Grammy winning producer and Windham Hill Records founder Will Ackerman, who co-produced the album along with Ann. And as can often be expected on a project recorded at Will’s Imaginary Roads Studio, a number of fine musicians are on hand to add accompaniment to some of the tracks, which also features engineering and mastering by studio wiz Tom Eaton.

On the album’s title track, the interplay of piano and English horn is exquisite, and the various movements the piece flows through provide a showcase for Ann’s impressive skills as pianist, composer, and arranger. One of my favorite tracks was the dreamy “Ventanas Al Mar,” inspired by gazing out on a seemingly endless sea. On a solo piano piece called “The Hourglass,” delicate arpeggios evoke an image of the tumbling sands of time that measure the moments of our lives. The album draws to an absolutely gorgeous conclusion with another of my favorite tracks, “Riversong,” this one featuring piano and oboe.

Having reviewed Ann’s previous album, In The Wake, which I liked very much, her musical evolution is evident in the deeply personal and heartfelt compositions of Tapestries of Time. The sensitivity she brings to each piece draws the listener in to a musical world of emotionally inspiring melodies and rich visual imagery for the minds eye. While the focus of the album is on “time,” what I was most struck by was the sense of timelessness that is evoked by Ann’s elegant compositions, artful arrangements and flawless performance. Although she has released ten albums and has received extensive airplay and numerous awards, my sense is that Ann Sweeten is an artist who is really hitting her stride now and that she will continue to impress us in the future.

To read a full length feature article on this CD, as well as others, please visit: www.michaeldiamondmusic.com