Month of the pilgrims’ pride and month of All Saint’s Day, All Soul’s Day (the Feast of All Souls) Election Day and Veterans Day. This month we feature National American Indian Heritage Month, America Recycles Day (November 15th), the End of Daylight Saving Time, National Novel Writing Month, Aviation Month, Hunger Awareness Month, Good Nutrition Month and Latin American Month, to name a few.
Well, that is simply not enough for me. In the famous words of Billy Idol, I say “gimme, gimme, gimme, more, more, more” In this case the more is the très charming Ms. Amy Denio.
While I think you should all know about Amy by now I shan’t make the mistake of assumption. Amy is a) saxist/clarinetist and leader of The Tiptons formerly known as the Billy Tipton Memorial Quartet, b) a globe-trotting accordionist with a 6 or seven combos of varying life spans c) a singer of many songs, including gospel songs performed under the harmonic ambiguity of Derik Bailey d) a world musician who has played in a dozen or so bands including Kultur Shock and recently AMA with the members of Correo Aereo e) singer/composer/all around creative human.
I’ve only met Amy recently. I decided it would be great to get Amy to play on The Icons Appointment with Destiny, so I sucked up my nerve went to a couple shows and said hi. For extra good measure, said to all the facebook world she was one of my favorite two accordion players (true – along with Alec K. Redfearn). She of course played on the album and was great!
Which brings us to the present. What you’ve got here is a CD Tutto Bene, Canzone Sulla Fisa(All’s Well, Songs for the Accordion – though if you throw it in a web translator it comes out “all buckets, songs on the accordion) Amy put out about a year ago. It is essentially a compilation of her tracks from various projects where she is the composer and accordion player. My current favorite is the soulful Ballintubber Abbey, which I believe she said was written from a headstone in Ireland.
Her accordion story goes like this.
Amy: In 1991 my band Tone Dogs played in Budepest and we were paid in Hungarian forints. Since it was a ‘soft’ currency, unexchangable internationally, the next morning a friend took me to a local music shop where I bought my first accordion, a little red East German number. I brought it home, where it sat quietly in its box in Spacious Spoot Studios in Seattle (my bedroom) for a year or two. Every once in a while I’d pull it out. Songs started forming themselves under my fingers, and the instrument became near and dear to my heart.
Critics say nice things about this album!
The result is a really interesting, often surprising, and at times absolutely mesmerizing album…Not only is the instrumentation wildly varied throughout the disc, but her vocals encompass a range of styles, from traditional singing to spiritual chanting…This is an amazingly accessible album, one that could be enjoyed by anyone, not just those into the avant-garde sound that is normally her preferred mode of expression. Her exuberance and disdain for the dry and academic affectation that makes so many po-faced experimental artists so tedious has a lot to do with her ability to create music that is simultaneously unusual and highly listenable.
The One True Dead Angel blog.
You can read more about Amy at Spoot Music and buy her stuff. I did and I can tell you there is massive variety. It doesn’t get too boring. You can see her around town pretty regular too, which also falls in the not boring category. Sat 10 Dec: The Tiptons Seattle WA The Chapel Performance Space (Good Shepherd Center) 8pm 4649 Sunnyside Ave. N, 4th floor, Seattle, WA (corner of 50th St. in Wallingford). I’ll be there.
Now it is off to work on the Xmas album. Have a great America Recycles Day!
1. Ambaraba Ci Ci Co Co (Die Knödel) 2:38
2. Axis (Pale Nudes) 5:08
3. Ballintubber Abbey (Amy Denio) 4:14
4. Cervello A Sonagli (Die Knödel) 4:31
5. Darling, Please Don’t Wake Me (Pale Nudes) 5:59
6. Downy Cheek Tango (Pale Nudes) 4:44
7. Duplex Nursing Home (Pale Nudes) 3:24
8. Finalala (Die Knödel) 4:05
9. Funeral Music (FoMoFlo) 3:46
10. Ghosting (for Pat Graney Dance) 1:24
11. Hanana (Danubians) 4:48
12. Hanonew (Amy Denio & Petunia) 2:48
13. Karouselika (Danubians) 4:11
14. Long Song (Die Knödel) 6:42
15. Opposites (Pale Nudes) 3:53
16. Psycho Marlboro (AD) 1:05
17. Salvatore (EC Nudes) 4:34
18. Some Other Spot (Pale Nudes) 3:10
19. You Never Call Me Anymore (Pale Nudes) 3:40
20. Ambarabusaraba’ (Quintetto alla Busara)
20 songs composed by Amy Denio on accordion.
© Copyright-Amy Denio, Spoot Music, ASCAP