Issue: November 2004
Tripping the Light Fantastic

     To celebrate (and help support) its new role as keeper of the Thomas Point Lighthouse, the Annapolis Maritime Museum-specifically, its Chesapeake Music Institute-has put together a collection of tunes written and performed by area musicians (except for one traditional piece) and inspired by the Chesapeake Bay.  

     For years artists have been producing paintings and carvings reflecting the Chesapeake experience. It’s little wonder that musicians are starting to build a body of musical work that likewise reflects the images and people of the Bay. And it all helps to create more awareness of the Bay and its charms. “If a place is worth singing about, it must be worth preserving,” says museum director Jeff Holland, himself a member of the local group Them Eastport Oyster Boys.   

     The variety of artists the CD represents reads like a who’s who of Bay folk music.

     Although it begins and ends with a classical composition by Randy Neilson (many know him as the accordion-playing Oyster Boy, but he also heads up his own band, Bobby & The Believers), in between you’ll find songs by Steve Keith, Bob Zentz, Kevin Brooks, Tom Wisner, Jeff Holland, Chris Noyes, J.D. Thompson and Caryl Weiss, plus a delicious hammered dulcimer instrumental by Tom Guay. An a cappella chanty group, The Boarding Party, once active in the D.C. area, provides the single traditional tune in the lineup (and one of the few that can actually be traced to local waters): “One Hundred Years on the Eastern Shore.” 

     The CD sells for $15 and is available at marine stores and gift shops around the Bay or from the museum website: Call 410-295-0104 to order by phone.