John Sheehan
                                                                                                                            "Dedicated Finger Style Guitar"
 

 

 

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NOTES FROM SUBURBIA
 


2003..A collection of thirteen finger-style songs and instrumentals: Six original songs, five original solo guitar compositions and two public domain works.
Styles range from folk rock, jazz
, Renaissance lute pieces, Irish baroque, blues and open tuning folk. Contains the song, ”Self made Man” the antithesis to ‘Modern Man’.

 


 

John Sheehan plays the guitar like a man in mid-conversation. On Notes From Suburbia he picks, strums, and sings his way through 13 audio lectures, on topics ranging from self-made men, to imported beer and mushrooms. Sheehan is first and foremost an instrumentalist, and his gifted fingers flip through the pages of six-string history with a dexterity that rivals heroes like Doc Watson and Leo Kottke. His love for classical, jazz, blues, and folk finds its way into almost every piece, allowing for a worldly breadth of emotion that causes self-penned tunes, such as "Cabin Fever," to resonate with the same personality as traditional pieces like "Five Ricercars." As a vocalist, Sheehan employs a dusty croon that brings to mind a less mumbly Mark Knopfler -- an obvious influence on his electric guitar work -- and filters his wry observations into an easy matter-of-fact dialogue with the listener. The nostalgic "Imprint," a sweet salute to the inspired and inspiring, is among the record's finest offerings, and "It Don't Come Easy" features a first-rate melody and fine harmonies from Jessie Holladay. While "Last Night In a Dream," with its subtle percussion and moody atmospherics, showcases Sheehan's bluesy roots -- and is strangely reminiscent of "Books of Moses" by Moby Grape casualty Skip Spence -- it's the Celtic-tinged "Lord Inchiquin," and the remarkable "Bader's Field" that place him in the top tier of contemporary folk artists. ~ James Christopher Monger, All Music Guide

Crow and Wolf Music review: On his third CD, John Sheehan continues the mix of instrumentals and songs, but this time with only minimal accompaniment--a sort of return to the stylings of Instrumental Solo Guitar without going completely instrumental. A nice compromise between the two, and where we think Sheehan fits in the best. "Desert Prayer" is inspired by the events of 9/11, while "My Habits Are Killing Me" is a paean to indulgence and the effects it can have on oneself. "Bader's Field" celebrates Sheehan's suburban upbringing while "Five Ricercars" is a nod to early music and the Sir John Alot-period stylings of John Renbourn--"...for friends who have asked me to release a lute CD, which I hope to do someday," Sheehan says. Quite possibly Sheehan's best, although all three are worth having.


 

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Last modified: 12/17/12