The Unbroken Circle is a collection of original songs, written in the tradition, that document events in the coalfields of West Virginia from the early 1900’s. This self-produced album is a collection of epic songs documenting the Buffalo Creek Flood of 1972, the 1912 Miners’ Strike in Kanawha County, and various events associated with the Mine Wars of 1921.
Tim O’Brien, Grammy Award Winning Singer-Songwriter: "Tom Breiding's bluegrass flavored CD "The Unbroken Circle" provides a much needed look at the story of the West Virginia coalfields. Like the best historical fiction, these true stories in song provide easy access to a culture whose trials and tribulations are too often ignored."
Tom T. Hall, Country Music Legend: "Shades of Woody Guthrie-These recordings contribute to the historical understanding of this much misunderstood region."
Read nation-wide acclaim for this album on the Reviews page.
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Pittsburgh guitar-slinger Tom Breiding's release with his band American Son, Time to Roll, walks the more imaginative side of the roots-rock line of demarcation. Lyrically, there's still a fair amount of bygone days, with daddies, granddaddies, old cars going nowhere, ain'ts and hometowns. At the beginning of "Daddy's Old Black Hearse" there's a crackling "vinyl" sound, and the disc itself looks and feels like a very small LP.
But on songs such as "Ain't No Quittin' Side of Me," Breiding's narrative impulse and evocative imagery overtake the nostalgia: "In a field in Pennsylvania I looked out on the rise / I saw the mighty serpent, the devil in his eyes / My heart knew his great poison but my feet marched just the same / Through the valley of death, my head held high callin' Virginia's name." Who or what Virginia is, we never learn ... there's no "Rosebud" hidden at the end of the album, either.
Musically, Time to Roll sounds modernized ... many songs have spacious, studio-magic atmospheres that give the dobros, shakers, acoustic guitars and Breiding's voice an epic sound. The more electrified tracks show off Breiding's and Jeff Stevens' hot guitar licks, often reminiscent of Tom Petty, Dire Straits or even Pretenders records. All in all, quality music that looks forward more than it looks back.
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Check back soon for a link to buy Tom's 2004 release, Two Tone Chevrolet
When We Shine was recorded and produced by Tom Breiding, and facilitated by Tom and Rick Malis. This Calliope Songwriting Project was funded by an Allegheny Regional Asset District Renaissance Grant celebrating Pittsburgh's 250th Anniversary
When we shine in this city, we really do shine. Whether it’s helping our country to win a war with manpower and steel, inventing the airbrake, curing polio or winning a sports championship. When the chips are down, this city always seems to rise to the challenge and brings out the best qualities that make Pittsburghers a unique, hardworking, humble, passionate, brilliant and compassionate people.
riting Project was funded by an Allegheny Regional Asset District Renaissance Grant celebrating Pittsburgh's 250th Anniversary
We chose this striking Clyde Hare photo, shot in 1952, as the cover for this CD because it reflects the spirit and content of most of the fifteen new songs in this collection about Pittsburgh.
It also seems to be an apt portrait of a city that turns 250 years old this year. In the foreground we can still see and embrace the artifacts of our mighty industrial past. In the horizon we see a glimpse of our city today and in the shining sky the promise of our future.
Buy now at CD Baby: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/whenweshine