The Angel's Share (Threshold Music 2016)
The Angel’s Share is a pared down recording, with no rhythm section and minimal instrumentation, leaving an abundance of space to help lift the vocals to the top of the mix. Threads of Celtic, country blues, Cajun, old-time mountain music, and traditional folk all emerge through the fabric of Dana’s original songwriting. Permeating The Angel’s Share is a feeling of place, and of home. Whereas Dana’s previous compositions extolled the expansiveness and wanderlust of travel, the material on The Angel’s Share hones in on themes of belonging and responsibility to one’s own location in the world.
Of the twelve tracks on The Angel’s Share, eight are Dana Robinson originals, two are traditional (Five Miles From Town, Man of Constant Sorrow), and two are covers (Allene’s Waltz by Karen Simon, The Sky by Derroll Adams).
Several themes wind through The Angel’s Share. These include songs about the environment, emigration, and climate change: John Muir’s Walking Blues – a response to California’s water crisis; River Flows On – reflections on the transition from fossil fuels to clean energy; The Emigrant – anticipating future water migrations in North America. Representing the Celtic influence, two songs were written in Scotland in the tiny crofting village of Clachtoll, during a week-long respite after an extended UK tour: The Angel’s Share – conveys, simply, the joy in community and of the transcendence shared with good spirit, work, love, dance, and music; Going North – musings on the geologic connection between Vermont and Scotland, written on the cusp of Dana and Susan’s recent move up the Appalachian Mountain chain from North Carolina to Vermont.