Marian Joy Ring | Ambrosia and Silk

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Ambrosia and Silk

by Marian Joy Ring

In Marian's fifth release of original songs, her insightful storytelling and imagery unite with her unique vocal agility, rhythmic guitar and quirky phrasing to align the heart in the spiritual context of the human experience. What a divine package!
Genre: Folk: Folk-Jazz
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Ambrosia and Silk
3:43 $0.99
2. Back in the Day
3:18 $0.99
3. My Brave Pioneer
5:13 $0.99
4. Watching You Walk Down That Aisle
4:32 $0.99
5. Bottlebrush Tree
3:21 $0.99
6. Home to Me
4:47 $0.99
7. A Kid Again
3:34 $0.99
8. Apollo
3:57 $0.99
9. Katie's Song
4:49 $0.99
10. Beacons of Light
4:22 $0.99
11. In Love and Light
4:36 $0.99
12. Seat of Her Pants
3:10 $0.99
13. Practicing Release
4:37 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
She began her career as a traveling minstrel in Peru. From there she went south to Chile. Eventually she traveled to Brazil where she stayed for four years.
Marian Joy Ring, musician, singer and songwriter spent eight years living in South America, collecting musical experiences and amassing a fortune in Latin American folklore and popular Brazilian music. Accompanying herself on guitar, she also learned to play the Brazilian viola caipira and the charango, an instrument of the Andean highlands.
In South America, Marian's musical ear become accustomed to the polyrhythms, intricate chord progressions and exploration of chordal extensions inherent in Brazilian popular music. Her singular guitar style is a result of the layering of these influences over a basic American folk/rock foundation.
Marian now lives in the Florida Keys and performs throughout the States and abroad. She continues learning and writing new music, and has released five recordings of original and latin music on the Black Dog Record label.
"Marian Joy Ring writes songs rich with texture and imagery, multi layered with descriptions of places, people and emotions." Solares Hill Newspaper



to write a review

Martin E. Rosenberg

Marian Ring, _Ambrosia and Silk_, Black Dog Records: 2011 Release
Marian Joy Ring, Ambrosia and Silk, Black Dog Records, 2011l

Marian Joy Ring has lived several artistic lifetimes compared to most of us, including years of absorbing the subtle rhythms and sensibilities of the very different cultures of Chile and Brazil, and it shows in her music. A veteran of both the music and television scenes in South America, currently living in the Florida Keys, Ms. Ring has a remarkable maturity in both musical conception and in her vocal and guitar performance. She has a sweet, precise and exceedingly fleet soprano capable of the jazzy articulations necessary for her remarkably nimble, ironic narratives of life, love. loss and redemption. While mixing jazz, blues, bossa nova, samba, merengue and many other Latin American influences into the folk and folk-rock of her youth, Ms. Ring's eclecticism means that her sophisticated musicality remains subservient to smart story-telling filled with humor and wistful remembrances.

Marian Joy Ring is a singer-songwriter with enormous gifts, and I am thrilled to have in my hands her latest release, a complete CD of 13 compositions called Ambrosia and Silk, produced by Woody Allen and Marian Ring, with all music and lyrics written by Ms. Ring, and arrangements by Mr. Allen (no I don’t think its THAT Allen!), who also plays an array of acoustic and electric guitars and ukulele. The album has lovely harmonies throughout, overdubbed by Ms. Ring, and they soar with palpable resonance.

One constant with Ms. Ring’s past albums that stands out, given my characterization of Ms. Ring’s musical influences, is the incredible range of genres she performs with an easy command. Each of her songs are narrative gifts, with the music providing often intricate emotional resonance for the ironic playfulness of the lyrics. In Ambrosia and Silk, Ms. Ring returns to the folk and folk- and country rock of her 1960’s roots, yet with quite evident traces of the sophisticated world-music textures of her past musical creations. She mixes it up, and the shifts in rhythm mean that while her voice remains central, one never tires and the intelligent, talented lyrics emerge to be admired.

The first, title cut, “Abrosia and Silk,” harkens us back to a synthesis of an earlier age of singer-songwriter performances exemplified by Joni Mitchell, Joan Baez, Laura Nyro and Judy Collins; and then this song gives way to an acoustic rock and roll anthem with a nostalgic look to the time (one indeed remembers) “when the moon/ruled our bodies” entitled “Back in the Day.” Then follows a southwestern Alt-country ballad elegy to her dear friend Lynda Muirhead, “My Brave Pioneer,” with delicate harmony, as well as tasty minimalist electric guitar licks from Mr. Allen that remind us of the work of Ms. Ring’s high school friend Marc Ribot. “Watching You Walk Down That Aisle” has the sophisticated feel of an old standard transmuted through the acoustic stylizing of Tim Hardin, or Kenny Rankin--but clearly she owns her own material, and here especially her considerable vocal gifts really startle. “Bottlebrush” is as whimsical an arrangement as I’ve ever heard, fusing the carribe vibe of Sonny Rollins’ “St. Thomas” while the instrumentation also echoes the early country blues of Ry Cooder channeling the Bahaman guitarist Joseph Spence. “Home to Me” and “A Kid Again” bring us back to a gentler age of folk-rock, with Ms. Ring’s nimble soprano counterpointed by a delightful harmonica break by old friend Jimmy Marlowe. In the song “Apollo” we find one of the best syntheses of samba and American folk, with call and response as well as parallel voiced harmonies. “Katie’s Song” brings us to a different integration, with alternating folk and bossa flavors with a nice nylon classical solo by Mr. Allen. “Beacons of Light” gives us a gentle bossa with a deeper acoustic lines by Mr. Allen, that remind us of a moving acoustic solo on an early Dylan tune. The next tune, “In Love and Light,” shows off Ms. Ring’s stylized guitar work, with harmonically sophisticated fingerpicking on the verses and gentle folk rock rhythms swaying the chorus that bear comparison with Joni Mitchell’s earlier incarnations. “Seat of Her Pants” picks up the pace, with some nice folk rock guitar, driven by Africanized rhythms reminiscent of the later work of Paul Simon, accompanied with just the tinge of an edge from Mr. Allen’s countrified Stratocaster. The last cut, “Practicing Release,” reminds me of Ms. Ring’s earliest musical persona, with just wisps of yodel, intelligent fingerpicking, subtle solo acoustic stylings by Allen, and with a lyric that reminds us not only of the joy and love of our mystic youth, but of an enduring compassion that has informed Marian Ring’s career.

Marian Ring is a talented songwriter committed to social and spiritual transformation, with a fulsome soprano of remarkable control, and no one deserves wider recognition than she. Ambrosia and Silk is an understated classic, and I urge you to explore her earlier releases as well.

Dr. Martin E. Rosenberg
Pittsburgh-based writer on science, philosophy and the arts,
and a jazz guitarist and composer.

Christine Naughton

Ambrosia and Silk: an inspired collection of songs
Ambrosia and Silk is an inspired collection of songs. Marian Joy Ring has taken her treasure trove of musical influences from the farthest corners of the earth and creates a smooth, totally listenable experience. Yummy ear candy. With accompaniment by Woody Allen and cover art by Phil Sampson, this treat makes a perfect holiday gift for someone you love.

Jim Marlowe

Ambrosia and Silk from the heart
Marian Joy Ring has developed the ability to take isolated moments of her life and people she has met and places she has been and turn them into pieces that speak from her heart. Her talent is tempered by her experiences and her songs have the power to draw us into her world.