Mary McCaslin represents an unbroken link between traditional folksingers and today's "new folk" singer-songwriters. Her music ranges from ballads of the old west to her own songs of the new west and modern times. Regarded as a pioneer of open guitar tunings, and known for her distinctive vocal style, Mary's influences can be heard in many younger folk performers.
She is also known for her haunting renditions of pop standards and rock classics, such as "Ghost Riders In The Sky", "The Wayward Wind", the Beatles' "Things We Said Today", and the Supremes' "My World Is Empty". Her versions of the Beatles' "Blackbird" and the Who's "Pinball Wizard" are made more unique by her "clawhammer" banjo accompaniment.
Mary's musical influences are as varied as her repertoire: The western ballads of Marty Robbins, the guitar playing of Joan Baez and Joni Mitchell, the singing and banjo playing of Hedy West, and the vocal inflections of the Beatles and the BeeGees.
Her songs have been recorded by Tom Russell, Bill Staines, Gretchen Peters ("Prairie In The Sky"), Chris Williamson ("Circle Of Friends"), David Bromberg ("Young Westley"), Kate Wolf ("The Ballad Of Weaverville"), Stan Rogers ("Down The Road"), Kate MacLeod, Alison Kitchen ("Way Out West") and Fur Dixon & Steve Werner ("The Dealers" & "Prairie in the Sky"). The Grand Canyon Railroad has used her song "Last Cannonball" for its promotional television ad.
Singer-songwriter Caroline Doctorow has recorded a CD of All Mary McCaslin songs called "I Carry All I Own"
"A great composer and interpreter."
"Mary McCaslin is an inspiration"
DIRTY LINEN MAGAZINE
"- a sage writer, warmly expressive singer and exquisite player."
SING OUT! MAGAZINE
"- a songwriter's songwriter."
NEW ENGLAND FOLK ALMANAC
"McCaslin's real-life western songs and earthy romanticism were profoundly influential among songwriters in the '70s.
Too often overlooked is the great impact her guitar playing also had on the acoustic scene."
L. A. TIMES (feature on mystery writer Walter Mosley)
"Mosley is a conundrum who pulls from Louis Armstrong and folk singer MaryMcCaslin with equal fervor and fascination."
LARRY KELP– KPFA, BERKELEY
"She sounds as if she had risen out of the Western soil and became its voice."
MARY McCASLIN MUSIC -
"Better Late Than Never" - Mary McCaslin Music MMM001
"A Life And Time" - Flying Fish FLY203 ( CD re-issue)
"Things We Said Today, The Best Of" - Philo 1149 (compilation of early Philo recordings)
"Broken Promises" - Philo 1160 (1994 release of new material)
"Way Out West" - Philo 1011 (CD re-issue)
"Prairie In The Sky - Philo 1024 (CD re-issue)
"Old Friends" - Philo 1046 (CD re-issue)
"The Bramble & The Rose" - Philo 1055 (CD re-issue of duet recording with Jim Ringer)
BEAR FAMILY -
"Rain - The Lost Album" - BCD 16232AH (1967-8 Capitol unreleased recordings)
SWEET BRIAR RECORDS -
"Sunny California" - Philo 1099 (re-issue of 1979 Mercury LP)
"Goodnight Everybody" - Barnaby 212 35002
Mary McCaslin - PO Box 3394 , Santa Cruz, CA 95063
Phone - home: (831) 429-1642 | cell: (831) 325-4986
e-mail: email@example.com / web: www.marymccaslin.com
2013 Photo by Greg Arrufat
Photo by Shmuel Thaler
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