Jody Redhage & Fire in July | Ancient Star

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Classical: Art songs Jazz: Chamber Jazz Moods: Type: Vocal
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Ancient Star

by Jody Redhage & Fire in July

Classical art song meets jazz & pop for a new sound that is hard to categorize, but is unique & gorgeous...with some of NYC's finest performers on voice, cello, clarinet, trombone, vibraphone, piano, & percussion.
Genre: Classical: Art songs
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Sometimes There's God So Quickly
6:04 album only
2. Rum Point
5:12 album only
3. Ancient Star
9:32 album only
4. As the Cat
1:45 album only
5. Dawning of Day
5:35 album only
6. This November
6:31 album only
7. This is Just to Say
1:21 album only
8. Sister, My Sister
4:42 album only
9. Calming
2:19 album only
10. The Botticellian Trees
5:16 album only
11. Elevation
2:13 album only
12. I Wonder Why
5:15 album only
13. Zip
1:34 album only
14. Greenport Slide
6:11 album only


Album Notes
Jody Redhage & Fire in July
Ancient Star

1. Sometimes There’s God So Quickly
2. Rum Point
3. Ancient Star
4. As the Cat
5. Dawning of Day
6. This November
7. This is Just to Say
8. Sister, My Sister
9. Calming
10. The Botticellian Trees
11. Elevation
12. I Wonder Why
13. Zip
14. Greenport Slide

Scarlet Tree Records
All compositions & arrangements by Jody Redhage (copyright) 2009 Scarlet Tree Music (ASCAP)

Jody Redhage, voice & cello; Ken Thomson, clarinet & bass clarinet; Alan Ferber, trombones; Tim Collins, vibraphone; Dan Tepfer, piano; Fred Kennedy, drums; Ben Wittman, percussion (tracks 1, 2, 3, 12 & 14); Marc Shulman, guitar (track 8); Stephan Crump, bass (track 8); and Ralph Alessi, trumpet (track 6).

All compositions & arrangements by Jody Redhage (copyright) 2009 Scarlet Tree Music (ASCAP).
Produced by Ben Wittman.
Recorded February 6, 7 & 8, 2009 at Knoop Studios, River Edge, NJ by Ben Wittman and Manfred Knoop.
Additional recording at Wittman Productions, Brooklyn, NY.
Mixed by Ben Wittman.
Mastered by A.T. Michael MacDonald at Algorhythms Mastering (Brooklyn, NY).
Original artwork by Grady McFerrin.
Layout by Madeline Sturm.

Here are the song lyrics in track order:

Sometimes There’s God So Quickly (words Jody Redhage)

Sometimes there’s God so quickly
Sometimes I know though I can’t see
Sometimes a moment holy
Sometimes blessed are we

Rum Point (words Jody Redhage)
When I need the calm
I know to go
Under pine or palm

When I know to go
I feel breeze
Calm in the air
Breeze everywhere

*Ancient Star (Poem titled “El Hombre” by William Carlos Williams)
It’s a strange courage
you give me ancient star:

Shine alone in the sunrise
toward which you lend no part!

*Poem (As the cat) (William Carlos Williams)
As the cat
climbed over
the top of

the jamcloset
first the right

then the hind
stepped down

into the pit of
the empty

Dawning of Day (words Jill Redhage)
Dawning of day
Dark drawn away
Dainty bird extends her wings
Lifts the veil of mystery
Dazzling day
Springtime begins
Cherry blossom, maple leaf
Dashing falcon meets the sky
Painted dreams
What I see
My relief
My release

Night’s cool air
Nipped at my skin
Now unwrapping slumber’s web
Standing firm against the wind
Plunging into ice and fire
Sparkling morning waken me

Set me free

I feel
Bright sunlight across my face
I pray
For another dazzling day

The forest calls
So green and still
Tiny weavers catch the light
Sun filters velvet earth
Dawning of day
Now spring begins
The sea crashes, the sky falls
Clouds with beaming sureness call
Love springs forward, new relief
I lap up salt and sweet

Set me free

I feel
Bright sunlight across my face
I pray
For a dance of ice and fire
For a dose of wild joy
For another dazzling day
For another dawning day

This November (words Jill Redhage)
Side by side in this grove we stand
My heart becomes yours as I hold your hand
Today we suspend all doubt all strife
We step forward we make our life

*This is Just to Say (words William Carlos Williams)
I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

Sister, My Sister (words Jody Redhage)
Sister, I wish the best for you
My only one
To tell you how I feel
You’re the dearest one

*The Botticellian Trees (words William Carlos Williams)
The alphabet of
the trees

is fading in the
song of the leaves

the crossing
bars of the thin

letters that spelled

and the cold
have been illuminated

pointed green

by the rain and sun--
The strict simple

principles of
straight branches

are being modified
by pinched-out

ifs of color, devout

the smiles of love--

until the script

move as a woman's
limbs under cloth

and praise from secrecy
quick with desire

love's ascendancy
in summer--

In summer the song
sings itself

above the muffled words--

Breeze everywhere

Greenport Slide (words Jody Redhage)
Half past five the sun sitting low
Waves on sand give their daily show
Golden light fades into twilight
And the vines of night grow around,
Grow above

And in the eve I sit with you
Take a breath and think
This time of day when starlight’s new
Just relax, pour a drink
In candlelight we hear the waves
And their gentle beat
Out on the porch we end our day
Just with you, my retreat

*By William Carlos Williams, from THE COLLECTED POEMS: VOLUME I, 1909-1939, copyright ©1938 by New Directions Publishing Corp. Used and reprinted by permission of New Directions Publishing Corporation.

I began composing for my ensemble Fire in July in 2006, and we had our first live performance on July 3, 2007—a fiery performance full of spirit and energy. I’m ecstatic to release this music in recorded form, almost exactly two years after our first show. This album has been made possible by the loving efforts of many. Thanks to all the players in Fire in July who have so generously blessed me with their extraordinary musicianship, spirit, and support over the past few years—Ken, Alan, Tim, Dan, & Fred. A special thank you to Alan for his constant love & support, and encouragement to stay true to my own voice. I am so grateful for the support, wisdom, and experience of Ben Wittman, and his fantastic musical instincts. Thank you to Herma Ferber, Ben A. Geisert, Kathy & Stan Ferber, and my parents Nell & Paul Redhage for making the production of this album possible; and a big thanks to my sister Jill for her crafting of beautiful words. Thank you to Grady McFerrin for his inspired artwork and Maddy Sturm for her artistic eye & experience.

For more information about Jody, her projects, and upcoming performances, please visit

Bio: Jody Redhage
Called an “adventurous cello songstress” (Time Out New York), cellist, composer, and vocalist Jody Redhage is “a new music dynamo…Redhage is cultivating a repertoire of indie art songs that breaches genre boundaries and makes for stirring listening” (MusicWorks Magazine). Her dual passions for chamber music and new music have led her to participate in an array of cutting-edge projects. Praised for her “exceptional technical command,” (Steve Smith, Night After Night), Jody has premiered over 100 works, including many of her own compositions for chamber ensembles, as well as premieres of fellow composers' works. Jody has also spent the past seven years developing the ability to simultaneously sing and play complex, rhythmically intricate and independent musical lines. As recipient of the 2005 Hertz Grant, Jody was able to develop this project by commissioning a repertoire of 21st century art song for voice, cello, and electronics from some of today’s most talented emerging composers. Her debut CD on New Amsterdam Records (, All Summer in a Day (2007), has been called “a freewheeling, slightly edgy and altogether "different" kind of musical experience…highly rewarding and worthwhile” (Dave Lewis, All Music Guide).

Jody graduated with her master's degree from the Manhattan School of Music in May 2005, and now resides in Brooklyn with her husband, renowned jazz trombonist and composer Alan Ferber. Her interest in a wide variety of musical genres has led her to regularly perform with classical, jazz, rock, and pop groups in New York City and throughout North America. Jody has worked with composers Pierre Boulez, George Crumb, Michael Gordon, David Lang, Steve Reich, Terry Riley, and Julia Wolfe and additional notable collaborations include performances with members of the Bang on a Can All-Stars, the Flux Quartet, Sequitur, Neil Diamond and band, Jay-Z, Beyonce, Meatloaf, the Roots, Clay Aiken, Enya, Duncan Sheik, Guster, and Sufjan Stevens. Jody has appeared on TV playing on ABC's The View, the CBS Early Show, and NBC's The Today Show, Conan O’Brien, and the Rockefeller Christmas Spectacular. Her own compositions and music from her CDs have been aired on several NPR stations and programs, including WNYC's Evening Music, Spinning on Air, New Sounds, WFMU, and WAMC’s Performance Today.

Jody’s original art song compositions are featured in her band/chamber ensemble Fire in July. Jody’s music melds the influences of art song, jazz improvisation, rock, and pop. The multi-talented members of Fire in July are Jody on voice/cello, Ken Thomson on clarinet/bass clarinet; Alan Ferber on trombones; Tim Collins on vibraphone, and Fred Kennedy on drums/percussion. Fire in July’s debut album, “Ancient Star” was released on September 15, 2009, and has garnered praise from George Grella in The Big City: “Ancient Star” is a real accomplishment, refreshing and enjoyable, music that is exploring and pioneering a new style and doing so with real though and skill.” David Garland from Spinning on Air says of the album: “Really interested stuff that encompasses everything from art song to jazz. It’s not easily pegged in terms of style or genre, but all for the better…because it takes us to unexpected places. Quite an ensemble…quite a sound.” Please visit for more information about Fire in July, to hear audio tracks, and for a schedule of upcoming concerts.



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