Jody Stecher | Wonders & Signs

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United States - California - SF

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Folk: Appalachian Folk Country: Bluegrass Moods: Type: Acoustic
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Wonders & Signs

by Jody Stecher

Original, creative, expressive, deeply informed by traditional folk music, blues, bluegrass, old-time country, with emotive heart-touching vocals and instrumental prowess bearing an original stamp.
Genre: Folk: Appalachian Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Five Rode Up to Phoenix
3:59 $0.99
2. Kenny in Kansas City
4:11 $0.99
3. The Kabul Grinder
2:10 $0.99
4. The Waters of Caney
7:01 $0.99
5. Weasels and Snakes
3:51 $0.99
6. Fly Away Home
4:34 $0.99
7. Long Time a-Comin'
3:38 $0.99
8. The Highway
6:24 $0.99
9. Look Me Up When You're Down Under
3:38 $0.99
10. Gwendolyn McGrath
2:52 $0.99
11. Osama's Pajamas
6:06 $0.99
12. At Waterloo
4:26 $0.99
13. The Southwest Train
3:33 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
WONDERS AND SIGNS is my first recording devoted entirely to repertoire of my own making.

I got brave enough to do this project when, after hearing my songs, folks stopped asking me “did you write that?” and started asking “where did you learn that?”  I was helped by a splendid crew of musicians. The time, energy, and enthusiasm they put into learning and recording this repertoire has been heartwarming. Two of the songs were co-written with friends (one with Chris Brashear, one with Allen Barnes), the rest were composed by me alone, or dreamt whole. 

Four of the thirteen songs are solos, mostly first takes. 

Five Rode Up To Phoenix
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
At an Arizona after-gig music session, Forrest Rose, my bandmate in Perfect Strangers, laid down his bass and died in our presence. My song celebrates his life.

Kenny In Kansas City
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
Bill Monroe’s fiddler, Kenny Baker, meets Count Basie’s fiddler, Claude Williams. Chris Brashear suggested the title, premise, and the key of B flat.

The Kabul Grinder
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
It’s a sandwich. I dreamed I was in an old-fashioned diner waiting for hours for my order. The guy behind the counter noted my growing impatience. “Sir,” he said, “it’s a mighty big job to assemble The Kabul Grinder.”

The Waters of Caney
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
The language and landscape of traditional song have appeared in my dreams since childhood. Sometimes my luminous dream places appear later in waking reality. In the mid-1970s, awake on horseback, at once calm and electrified, I traversed high country that was identical to the details of a vivid recurring dream, right down to the trilliums blooming in the snow.

Weasels and Snakes
(Chris Brashear & Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
My Perfect Strangers bandmate Chris Brashear sang me an early version of this song as a single verse and chorus. We built it up together.

Fly Away Home
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
Mother as bird. Walking and weeping in the rain, I made this song from fragments of songs my mom used to sing to me and my sister when we were small and hadn’t yet heard of dementia.

Long Time A Comin’
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
I dreamed the tune whole, and the title too. The words came soon after.

The Highway
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
Everything in this song is true, but some of its events and people are composites.

Look Me Up When You’re Down Under
(Allen Barnes & Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
An immigrant to Australia recalls a failed Arctic romance while contemplating opposites. 

Gwendolyn McGrath
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
Gwen was an accomplished banjo player before she became my student. I made a tune for her that I hoped was worthy of her skills. Gwen mastered it in a week. It took me 2 months.

Osama’s Pajamas
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
Politicians warn of the Guantanamo prisoners’ magical powers; should they set a manacled foot on the American mainland to stand trial, we’ll lose our liberties, health, and bank accounts. Fear sends us crawling under our beds. But there’s no safety there; that’s where the Boogie Man lurks.

At Waterloo
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)
A song of parallel planes and regret. And jet lag.

The Southwest Train
(Jody Stecher) Vegetiboy Music (BMI)

An English rail journey from London to Brockenhurst.

Jody Stecher- vocal, guitar, mandolin, mandola, banjo (3, 10, 13)
Kate Brislin- vocal
Keith Little-vocal, banjo, guitar (2)
Paul Knight - bass, vocal (7)
Chad Manning- fiddle
Eric Thompson- guitar ( 2, 7 - 11), mandolin (13)
Suzy Thompson- fiddle (1, 10), accordion (11, 13), vocal (11)
Allegra Thompson - vocal (11)
Bill Evans- banjo (10)



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