Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Childhood & Memory
Genres: Jazz, New Age, Pop
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Best of the "solo" Ackerman recordings
Colin R. Glassey | Bay Area, CA USA | 01/19/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Will Ackerman has created a sizeable number of records starting in 1976 (In Search of the Turtle's Navel) and continuing (hopefully) into the future.This record was his third and in some respects it was the last one of its kind by Will: a solo accoustic guitar recording. All his later albums are to a greater or lesser extent duets or trios with other musicians. But not this record. This is the "pure stuff". I think it is wonderful. Its NOT ground breaking music (like Michael Hedges early works) but there is some quality, some sense of time and space that I find in William Ackerman's music which I rarely find anywhere else. Not to say that this music can't be intense, it is. The track "Seattle" is a musical journey that is violently beautiful, perhaps Will's single finest work. Or perhaps "Bodie" with its wild opening that then falls back into a quiet, reflective mode, is the piece that best sums up Ackerman's work.I love nearly all of Will's recordings (and own them all), but this one, this one is special. It is a touch-stone in my life. A minor note: This does not seem like "folk" music to me. First, all the compositions are original to Will. Second, at its core, this music is not based on American blues, bluegrass, or even English/Celtic folk tunes. This is solo guitar, unique to Will Ackerman, an inspiration to many."
Another one of his best
Colin R. Glassey | 11/15/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is William Ackerman's third album, from 1979. It still displays Ackerman's traditional folk influences (which were heavier on his first two albums, "Search for the Turtle's Navel" and "It Takes a Year"), but the record begins to forebode the direction he would pursue beginning in 1981 (with "Passage," a much more streaky album) and continuing to the present. This is one of the best moments in the whole Ackerman catalogue.
The last album to feature Ackerman completely on solo guitar for the record's duration (save for a very brief flute line in "Anne's Song"), "Childhood and Memory" boasts some of Ackerman's most developed and moving compositions. The opening "The Wall and the Wind" is delightfully melodic and springlike. "Sunday Rain" is bleak and austere; check out the creative banjo usage on this one too. And I love "Murray's Song" (which Ackerman rerecorded on 1991's "The Opening of Doors"). "Seattle" and "Gideon" hearken back to the bluegrassy folk of Ackerman's first record.
All in all, this album is certainly one of Ackerman's finest. It would be a great introduction to his body of work or an essential purchase for someone already hooked."
Marc Ruby? | Warren, MI USA | 03/23/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"But for a short duet with flute (Anne's Song), and an essay on the banjo (Sunday Rain), this is a solo acoustic guitar album. It is the William Ackerman closest to his roots, still heavily influenced by John Fahey and Robbie Basho. Still more comfortable by himself and excited by the beginnings of his musical journey. Unpolished in comparison to his later work, there is still great power here.Starting out with pattern picking in open tunings while working in melody almost by slight of hand (Wall and the Wind, Childhood and Memory) Ackerman then shifts to more jazz-like stylings of Three Hesitant Themes (which dances like a moth in the fire of fingerstyle playing) and experiments like Sunday Rain. And there is the pure Fahey-like exuberance of Seattle. Ackerman is pushing limits as much as he is playing for entertainment.In listening to Childhood and Memories repeatedly in preparation for this review, I gradually came to understand some of the technical feats Ackerman was performing and to begin to unravel the tag end of a very fertile musical mind. Apparent complexity is often simple, and what sounds effortless stretches unexpectedly.Some feel that this album falls a bit short of the high points of some others, but I disagree. There are unexpected depths worth examining and some pure tour-de-force essays to spellbind. As with many of Ackerman's older works the album can be hard to find but will greatly reward the seeker."