A finalist for Best Group/Duo in the 7th and 8th Annual International Acoustic Music Awards (IAMA) for songs from their latest CD, “Power Lines,” Jubilant Bridge is gaining increasing recognition through world-wide terrestrial and online radio airplay.
Intricate arrangements, harmonies “so tight, they pulse” (Mary Cliff—WAMU-FM), comic repartee, a repertoire ranging from critically-acclaimed originals and contemporary songs, to finger-dancing instrumentals and unexpected covers—these are the hallmarks of every Jubilant Bridge performance. The duo comes from a rich aural tradition but surprises audiences with counter melodies, changing time signatures, and well-chosen dissonance. Their instruments go beyond simple accompaniment; the arrangements and the songs themselves are meshed. They use the vocabulary, but step outside of the conventions, of folk, rock, and pop—not simply stitching together genres, but folding the seams under. Every song becomes their own.
The duo has released five recordings. Their latest CD, “Power Lines,” recorded at world-class studio Colorado Sound, features their compelling original songs as well as their unique take on songs from favorite songwriters, such as Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.” Victory Music Review finds “an amazing level of melodic richness and complex songwriting” throughout the album, the songs “musical and lyrical tapestries that can be surprisingly deep and poetic.” The duo’s previous recordings include “Happenstance,” “Under Shattered Skies” (which Victory Music Review proclaimed “a rich aural feast”), “Another Run At the Mountain,” and “Crazy Like The Wind.” Jubilant Bridge is currently working on selecting and arranging material for their next project, a compilation of Renaissance, and pre-Renaissance, songs for the Christmas season.
Vocalist and guitarist Carol Van Alstine provides JubilantBridge with most of its distinctive original songs. She comes to songwriting by way of poetry. Often inspired by dreams, and musical and lyrical phrases that take her unexpected places, her emotionally wise songs depict states of mind and heart and the conflicts between them. Her awards include Silver and the BMI Songwriter Award for the song “Power Lines” in the 2010 Mid-Atlantic Song Contest, one of the longest-running song competitions in the nation, and several Honorable Mentions in the Billboard World Song Contest, an international songwriting competition. With a voice that has been described as “striking,” “ethereal,” and “far purer than Michael Jackson’s fondness for gloves,” she is often asked after a show, “How does such a big voice come out of such a small person?” Her musical experiences range from performing at the bottom of the Grand Canyon to singing soprano in Renaissance choirs.
Mountain dulcimer wizard and vocalist Willie Jaeger takes what is often thought of as a “simple” folk instrument and discovers its complexity. He strums, he fingerpicks, he flatpicks, he plays lead, and recently he’s been experimenting with electric dulcimer. His unique style of playing, and his popularity as a teacher at the renowned Swallow Hill School of Music, inspired Westword, Denver’s alternative weekly, to vote him Denver’s “Best Local Folkie.” He was a finalist (Silver) in the national mountain dulcimer championship at Winfield, Kansas, and in 2009 he won a Gold Medal for Best Original Instrumental Composition at the National Veterans Creative Arts Festival. An engaging singer with a lyrical baritone, he also plays hammered dulcimer and guitar, and composes instrumentals and the occasional song.
Jubiant Bridge is excited that their music is heard on 7522 Radio.