Reviews

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Feedback on CD Launch "Paint a Thought"

That's what I'd call a triumph!  
Wonderful afternoon, great music, especially loved seeing Anne getting  into the groove and belting it out on the title track and Soul Sister... yesterday  was a revelation... WOW! More please!!!!
And a confident, polished and personable performance without a single tuning break - how wonderful !!!!:)

Les Jacques

Thank you for a beautiful afternoon of music at your CD launch. It was the most fabulous way to spend an afternoon and for us a whole day visiting the stunning blue mountains and sharing such an intimate and uplifting concert.  You are an engaging musician and your music nurtures the soul.
I will follow your gig guide and hope to come up and see you again.

Vicki Manning

"Thank you for yet another amazing night filled with inspirational music!

Kendal Walton

Cd Review
 My first impression of Anne's "Paint a Thought" CD  is of the wonderful (and very full) sound - the  instrumentation, sympathetic musicians and the production have come together to create something distinctive that grabs you from the first  note, fitting Anne's unusual song structures like a glove and  enhances them beautifully. Very tasty!
 
Artwork and packaging are a tour-de-force too - very beautiful !

 

Turn Your World Around

"Absolutely gorgeous; 10/10!!"
Phillip Adams; ABC's "Late Night Live"

" This is a fine album by one of our best local singers. If Folk music is your thing, then this is an album to run out and grab immediately. Anne's beautiful, complex music, sensitive lyrics and heartfelt vocals make this one of the best of recent releases............"
Blue Mountains FM Radio

As Blue Mountains Musician of the Year, 2005 was a very successful year for Anne Ridgway. Her second album, “Turn Your World Around” gives a pretty good idea as to why. Earthy and acoustic but very, very gentle; Anne’s skills as a singer, songwriter and guitarist are much in evidence and all are excellent.
   Don’t, however, expect any cutting edge or confronting lyric lines from this release. The most in the way of social commentary that we see here is in “Shine” and “Garden Days”, which are personal reflections on the value and wonder of children and the long term effect of the ethics and the love that we pass onto them. The CD is dedicated to her own young children, Zoe and Alice, and it is obvious from Bar One that “Turn Your World Around” is a very personal journey.
   But if this album is introspective, it is far from inaccessible. The entire production has a feel about it which invites the listener to curl up close to Anne, watching over her shoulder while she speaks to herself, sorting through a box of memories and dreams. It is almost possible to feel like an intruder………..that perhaps it would be better to tip-toe out before she looked up and noticed that you were watching.
   For me “China Seas” and Garden Days” are the standouts on this release although there are some traditionals such as “She Moved Through the Fair” which are also treated beautifully and simply.
   The production by Robin Janus at Crisp Audio is a perfect match for this approach, as indeed are the choice of  backing musicians.
   Liz Frencham (on double bass) and Tony Pyzakowski (on violin) add their instruments sparcely and sensitively so that they never distract from the central themes.
   This is an outstanding Blue Mountains release. Some lovely cover photography and design are also worthy of a mention and they complete what is overall, a worthy addition to any serious acoustic music buffs collection.
Pat Drummond

Turn Your World Around

The voice is as pure and limpid as the songs are lyrical and poetic, the melodies as gently caressing as the soul delivering them. Ridgway has a softly subdued, yet quietly celebratory view of the world around her, knowing there is pain and hurt but ever searching out the subtle beauty the rest of us might miss, be it the memory evoked by an empty shell or the simple innocence of a child so easily broken yet so often the thing we all crave to rediscover.
   Such sensitivity could easily be overwhelmed by its context. I can imagine it must be hard to deliver songs like this to an inattentive audience, but on record, Ridgway has surrounded herself with musicians as obviously equally sensitive, matching the slivers of glistening acoustic guitar with a swell of violin here, an underpinning double bass note there, all captured with an unerring clarity full of air and light by engineer Robin Janus.
   It’s not the easiest field in which to shine these days; the ever-expanding world of the acoustic singer/songwriter, but Ridgway has enough of the quality of the masters of the genre (artists like Joan Baez, something of whose vocal tone she shares, Sandy Denny and Joni Mitchell), to command something of the attention that is her due. The warmth and gracious maturity in this collection is becoming an all too rare commodity and deserves gentle nurturing.
by Michael Smith – Associate Editor of Drum Media

Angophora

Angophora is a collection of thirteen songs by Anne Ridgway. All the compositions are by Anne except for the words of Lothlorien which she has adapted from Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. This is Anne's first CD and it is most welcome by those of us who are already familiar with her music.
   Her writing is inspired by the beautiful surroundings of the Blue Mountains environment where she resides, childhood memories, inhumanity and the ongoing quest for life's meaning. The song, Moving On, was inspired by the film, Chocolate. It is this diverse and interesting range of subject matter that makes this CD a very worthwhile listening experience. Anne's clear, warm voice enhances each track. The majority of the songs are sung to her gentle finger-style guitar accompaniment, allowing for the lyrics to be clearly heard. On the remaining tracks Oonagh Sherrard's beautiful cello, Scott Gardener's piano and Matt Ward's drums suitably complement the arrangements. It is great to hear Theresa West's vocal backing.
    This collection of reflective and thought provoking songs has been carefully produced by Robin Janus to allow the listener to respond with ease to the various styles and moods of the music.
   The CD finishes with the song, You Have Seen My Soul, my personal favourite. The song title can perhaps be borrowed to express what
Anne Ridgway has sensitively accomplished with this recording.
Reviewed by Jim Low

I first heard Anne Ridgway at a house concert in Altoona and had been advised by a few residents in the Blue Mountains as to the purity and sweetness of this woman’s voice. On her recently produced CD, Angophora her soaring vocals will entrance you. Her flowing lyrics reveal the power of the human spirit, obviously reflecting her own personal experiences……“Grand old angophora you yearn to be free, With each skin you shed more beauty we see. Oh isn’t that a little bit like you and me.”
I can relate to many themes of her songs….the intimate details of her closeness to her Dad, bigotry (powerful & very relevant words here), train journey, Brother My Hero & honeyeaters and trees. Her strength and conviction comes through in singing. Backing is relatively simple, uncluttered mostly Anne’s guitar with the occasional sounds from Oonagh, Scott,Matt and Theresa providing percussion, backing vocals, cello & piano.
My favourite would have to be Pilgrims (for the people of Kosova) an extremely moving song. All songs are written and composed by Anne except Lothorien where the words have been adapted from text of “Lord of the Rings”. In a nutshell…gentle harmonious sounds with meaningful lyrics.
Review by Margaret Bradford

 

Review By Tony Bates
(Station Librarian 100.7 Highland FM Victoria)
 
 Anne Ridgway is one of those few folk artists who has the gift to be firmly rooted in the true folk tradition, whilst remaining thoroughly modern. Think back to the days of Mimi Farina, Joan Baez, Judy Collins and Joni Mitchell with the innocence of those special Laurel Canyon days, when songs were sung with true emotion.
Anne’s voice has that crystal clear resonance, which enables stories to be told within the context of her self penned songs. Take careful notice of “Five Little Birds” and dare not to be moved by it and if you want to set yourself free, “Shine” will surely do that for you: ‘ don’t be a victim of your past’, shine!’
For a truly traditional interpretation of a song, listen to “She Moved Through the Fair” and imagine Anne resplendent on stage, soulfully sharing this number with you, making it your, and her, very own.
Folk at it’s best, need one say more?