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The Rhythmia

The Band:

Kevin Sanders - Guitar, percussion, banjo-guitar

Pat Ireland - Violin

Bob Ault - Mandolin, five-string banjo, tenor banjo, ukulele

The Rhythmia

The Rhythmia

  1. Dill Pickles Rag (Charles L. Johnson, 1906) 2:49
  2. Sunflower Slow Drag (Scott Joplin & Scott Hayden, 1901) 3:48
  3. Cha Bai (traditional Cape Verde piece, 1890) 1:57
  4. Peaceful Henry (E. Harry Kelly, 1901) 2:55
  5. Impecunious Davis (Kerry Mills, 1899) 3:47
  6. Pauv Piti Momzel ZiZi (traditional Creole piece, 1946) 2:29
  7. Pigeon Wing Rag (Charles L. Johnson, 1909) 2:49
  8. Zorita – Spanish Intermezzo (Harry Cohn, 1907) 3:16
  9. Corn Shucks (Ed E. Kuhn, 1908) 2:28
  10. The Kaiser’s Rag (Clare Mast, 1915) 3:07
  11. The Walking Conga (Kevin Sanders, 2009) 1:50
  12. The Thriller (May Aufderheide, 1909) 2:34
  13. Kansas City Rag (James Scott, 1907) 3:16
  14. Manchega (Louis M. Gottschalk, 1852) 3:54
  15. The Proud and Prosperous (Pat Ireland, 2009) 1:57
  16. Rag Pickings (unknown, arranged by Fred Van Eps, 1911) 4:33
  17. Forsythia (Kevin Sanders, 2009) 3:17
  18. Smoky Mokes (Abe Holzmann, 1899) 2:53
  19. Ragged Edges (Kevin Sanders, 1993) 3:19
  20. Dixie Twilight (Charles L. Johnson, 1909) 3:39

Total Running Time: 60:46


A Review

by Nathan Sanders,

"The Rhythmia is a string band that performs a mix of authentic Ragtime (primarily written & published in Kansas City, their home town) and Caribbean music, along with original compositions, to form a variety of old-time folk dance music." ~ The Rhythmia web site

     If the quote above describing The Rhythmia does not intrigue you somewhat, then check your pulse. The very mention of Ragtime along with Carbibbean music in the context of old-time folk dance music made me curious to find out what was contained on the latest CD from the "new" string band The Rhythmia. Of course Kevin Sanders, Pat Ireland, and Bob Ault are no strangers to the genre, but I suppose you could say "new" refers to their current offering of their band and music.

     As the old saying goes, "Do not judge a book by its cover." On the surface The Rhythmia appears to be just another instance of three friends getting together with their guitar, fiddle, and banjo to sit around and make some music, maybe play a few gigs. And with the  first listen, that impression seems to be solidified. BUT WAIT!! Did you really listen to what they just played? If Pat Ireland's classy violin did not just blow you away, listen to the accompaniment provided by Kevin Sanders on guitar, covering some really nice bass runs and perfectly timed jazzy chords, as well as throwing in some percussion. And then you have Bob Ault, either on some variation of a banjo or mandolin or maybe even uke putting on his own show of sorts, with clever licks, rhythms, and interpretations, perfectly blended to round out the entire ragtime ensemble. I would recommend any listener to take the approach I did. Play the CD a few times to gain an overall sense and feel of the music. Get lost in the rhythms and be taken back to another era. But then listen again with the intention of hearing a particular instrument. Pay attention to some of those violin runs. What is that banjo saying? You get the idea.

     This masterful presentation of some perhaps long forgotten music is only further enhanced by the liner notes, more of a history book really. If a person ever wanted to take an introductory course on the History of Ragtime Music, The Rhythmia CD would be an excellent place to start. All three gentlemen are scholars and have applied their years of study and experience to present a fine collection of living history, as well as a few original compositions, proving their mastery of the art. The listener will be delighted to read a brief description and history of each track, and will come away with a fuller understanding and greater enjoyment of the music, as well as a hunger to find more of it on their own. But while being "instructed", remember to have fun tappin' your toes to the lively rhythms and sounds of The Rhythmia. Find out for yourself with some tasty morsels at their web site today.