In My Own Way
Through her original songs, Linda paints vivid portraits, giving voice to the person living through the Irish famine accepting their choice to stay and remain Irish, the Civil War soldier facing his brother across the field of battle, the beekeeper at peace with the friendship of his bees, and the bait shop owners who aspire to more. And underneath it all, her own strong voice always sheds light on the truth, with humor and compassion for how we get in our own way. Reviews: What people are saying about Linda's original songs, and about her album "In My Own Way" "Full on artistry... Full on!" ~ Beth Nielsen Chapman, Award-Winning Songwriter, Recording Artist "Beautifully warm music" ~ Paul Reisler, Songwriter, Composer, Recording Artist "I loved your Celtic song, Sentinel" ~ Angela Kaset, Award-Winning Songwriter, Recording Artist "It's beautiful. There's love in every song" ~ Don Henry, Grammy Award-Winning Songwriter, Recording Artist "Hauntingly beautiful. Exquisitely done!" ~ Josie Phelan, Cellist, Composer, Recording Artist "Cardboard Habit is just so perfect for our lives, I'm having trouble keeping from laughing while I type." ~ Sandy Birkenmaier, Writer, Editor "Everything flows beautifully from one song to the next." ~ Jesse McRae, Songwriter "I had fun playing reggae mandolin on Espresso Coming Soon" ~ John Mock, Composer, Multi-instrumentalist, Studio Engineer, Photographer "I especially like Save It For A Rainy Day, very beautiful arrangement with the recorder too. And Cardboard Habit is a hoot, a lot of fun! I am so impressed!" ~ Chris Van Dyke, Harper Linda's music has been described as having a Celtic sensibility to it, as in her song Sentinel, told from the perspective of someone who stays behind when the rest of the family comes to America during the time of the Irish famine. Linda's haunting vocal, the ocean, the seagulls, and the spare and mournful whistle transports you there entirely in the moment. At the same time her years of international folk dancing have given her a taste for the melodies of the Balkans, Eastern Europe and the Middle East with their complex rhythms and harmonic scales. As a storyteller, Linda knows how to weave melody and lyric together to serve the song best. "Often I'll write a back story on a character, and in that way they will come to life for me" Linda says. "In a certain sense, I try to get out of the way and let the characters write their own songs." Linda plays her songs in alternate tunings on her guitar because she finds that opens the door to new possibilities, new ways of looking at the instrument that has been such constant companion for so many years. Early Musical background: Originally a native of Bayside, New York, Linda's first instrument was a violin and at age 7 she played in her grade school orchestra. By high school she'd picked up the guitar and she played and sang at coffeehouses during her college years in Buffalo, NY where she also sang in the University of Buffalo choir. Later in grad school in Architecture at Virginia Tech, she took up the hammer dulcimer, and she had a small business building hammer dulcimers there in Blacksburg, Virginia. Celtic Harp: In the summer of 1989 Linda was living in northern Virginia where she had a chance to play a Celtic harp for the first time. She promptly fell in love with the sound of it, and the feel of playing it. By that fall she and her husband, Roger Cornell, had built their first harp from a kit. Linda has delighted audiences with her harp playing and stories of harp lore ever since. She has taught harp workshops on a variety of topics and also teaches private harp lessons. And in 2004 she had the good fortune to play harp on her songwriting teacher, Beth Nielsen Chapman's album hymns on Beth's song hymn to mary. The Songs on Linda's album "In My Own Way": 1. Close Enough - my love song to Roger, my husband, co-writer and loving companion of many years, with gratitude. 2. In My Own Way - facing aging graciously, honoring our own path, intertwining with another while not losing ourselves, and chuckling at the things we do that get in our own way. 3. Sentinel - around 1850, during the Irish famine, whole families would come over to America, sometimes leaving one person behind to hold onto the lease on the land, so that if it didn't work out in the new country they could go back. I wrote this song from the perspective of the one who stayed behind. The ocean, the seagulls, and John Mock's spare and mournful whistle transports you there entirely in the moment. 4. Save It For A Rainy Day - modern life, too little time. When is that rainy day going to come? 5. Cardboard Habit - a funny blues song about hoarding storage containers, an addiction more common than you might think judging by the number of people who have "confessed" to me after my shows. 6. Bees Are His Friends - is this a song about a beekeeper who prefers the company of bees to humans, or do we all befriend bees despite the occasional sting? I certainly know a few. 7. Too Good At Letting Go - sometimes we give up at the first sign of trouble, sometimes we hang on too long. Wisdom would say every relationship is unique and deserves a fresh chance, but we are sensitive creatures with long memories and sometimes we're too quick to preempt potential pain. 8. Ashes, Ashes, All Fall Down - a haunting tale about two brothers during the Civil War, one who fought for the north and one who fought for the south. John Mock's use of harmonium, drums and tin whistle wrings all the emotion out of this song and takes it to another realm. 9. Espresso Coming Soon - a song inspired by a trip to the Olympic Peninsula of Washington state, and the sight of a run down bait and tackle shop in the middle of nowhere with a huge banner on the lawn in front of it that said "Espresso Coming Soon". Even those of us in the humblest of circumstances aspire to greatness. 10. Wash 'n' Wear Heart - exploring the nature of the vulnerable heart using laundry metaphors and a healthy dose of puns. 11. I'll Be With You When You Go - with love and compassion for the complex characters in our lives who mirror back at us the parts of ourselves we'd rather not see, for aging parents whose lives are winding down, for their children facing the long trip after getting "the call" and wondering if they'll make it in time, for all those who've come up to me after my shows and said "Thank you for telling it like it really is". Production Credits: Produced and arranged by Linda Titolo and John Mock Recorded, mixed and mastered by John Mock at John Mock Studios, Nashville, TN Art design and cover photos by John Mock with additional photography by Linda Titolo and others Writing Credits: All songs written by Linda Titolo except "Cardboard Habit", "Save It For A Rainy Day", "Wash 'n' Wear Heart", and "Espresso Coming Soon" written by Linda Titolo and Roger Cornell. Performers: Linda Titolo: vocals, steel string guitar Roger Cornell: vocals John Mock: steel string, electric and classical guitars, bouzouki, mandolin, harmonium, concertina, synth strings, pennywhistle, recorder, bodhran, conga, shakers, guiro (fish) Special Thanks to John Mock, studio engineer, photographer, and musician extraordinaire. This album wouldn't exist without you.