Morning Call (August 12, 2007)
"They'd like to teach the world to sing"
By Chris Pollock Of The Morning Call
August 12, 2007
When the final strains of the first All Nations Peace Concert faded away in the Volksplatz at Musikfest Saturday, Jackie Tice said she was satisfied.
"I feel like I did what was true to the original vision I was given," she said.
The applause from hundreds of listeners proved the popular appeal of that vision, which was to use musicians from around the planet in a demonstration of solidarity and support of a peaceful world.
A Center Valley folk musician, Tice said the idea for the concert came to her after she performed at a world peace flag ceremony at the Banana Factory on Bethlehem's South Side in February 2006.
"I want [the audience] to understand we are all related," she said. "Once we see each other with understanding, compassion, and a sense of relationship, we cannot do harm to one another. We can only embrace each other as relatives."
Jean Paul Samputu, a Rwandan performer and a star in Africa, traveled from Montreal to lend his talents to the project.
His life story shows the consequences when society breaks down. Samputu was imprisoned in 1990 at the outbreak of the Rwandan civil war along with many other members of the Tutsi tribe, who were considered enemies of the ruling Hutu tribe. He was released with the intervention of the Red Cross, and his father advised him to flee the country.
Samputu spent the next four years performing in Burundi and Uganda. He returned to his native Rwandan village in 1994 to find that his father, mother, three brothers and a sister had all been murdered by their neighbors. He said he spent the next next nine years consumed with anger and grief.
"I went to witch doctors to find healing," he said. "I was drinking and addicted [to drugs]."
What finally saved him, Samputu said, were the prayers of a Christian friend, and converting to Christianity himself in 2003.
"I use my music to help heal others," he said. "It's not easy to forgive those who killed your parents. It's not from me, the power is from Jesus."
Religion of a different kind was a prominent part of of Sunjung Yun's life as well. Yun performed on the haegum, a two-stringed instrument somewhat similar to a violin, that is traditional in her native South Korea. Yun is a recent graduate of the Won Institute of Graduate Studies in Cheltenham, Montgomery County, which she said was the only school for Buddhist priests in the United States. She plans to be ordained in South Korea, then return to the United States to practice her faith.
"I think to have peace around the world, we must start with the individual," she said. "That is a very Buddhist idea."
And like Tice and Samputu, Yun believes in the power of music to change hearts.
"This is a place we can reach out to the world," she said. "I think they can feel peace of mind through our music."
Second Skin Review
Greg Clayton: Spirit Horse Productions - Australia
August 13, 2007
"I first saw Jackie Tice live at the legendary Bluebird Cafe in Nashville back in the late 90's. It was her voice that captivated me then and now with the release of her latest CD, Second Skin, it's still that voice.
"At times, tortured and raw but with a sweetness and purity that invokes Baez, Collins and Mitchell, this is folk music at it's best. Jackie's songs are exposed and open wounds detailing personal experiences and viewpoints. There are no hidden messages in these songs...the meanings are clear.
"Nothing on this CD will make you want to get up and dance...that's not Jackie Tice's way...but you will be made to think and listen to lyrics which will cut and wind their way into your psyche....and yes, she's that good.
"Lyrically intense, the wordplay is underpinned by soothing acoustic guitars and keyboards, often understating the intensity of the lyrics. The titles tell the tale - Second Skin, Human, Wide Open, In These Bones. The one track full of biting lyrical force is almost a cousin to Billy Joel's old classic 'We Didn't Start the Fire' except Jackie doesn't mince words this time.....reeling off all the hot spots of the world (past & present) where man's inhumanity to man is embedded into our psyche...she even manages to weave her Native American heritage into the song. Trail of Tears will (or should) get you thinking!
"Beautiful production, clean acoustic sounds mixed with keyboard and electric guitars on some tracks, this is Jackie's best work to date. Do yourself a favour and take a listen. The music world needs more Jackie Tice's but at least we have this one to enjoy!"
Morning Call (March 2004)
"Common Ground - Synergy between Center Valley singer Jackie Tice and Native American producer Bill Miller results in a heartfelt CD"
It's March 4, and Jackie Tice is struggling in a recording studio deep in the rocky woods of Coopersburg. The singer-songwriter from Center Valley just can't get the vocal right for ''Coming Home,'' a lilting song about romantic limbo. She's clearly drained by a long week of putting her family on hold to play musical den mother. Even the chocolate she passed around for a shot of communal energy is distracting.
Sitting at the console, on the other side of a glass wall, producer Bill Miller offers advice that Tice knows by heart. Stand closer to the microphone, reminds the guitarist-flutist-composer, who has worked with Alison Krauss and Robbie Robertson. Open your eyes. Breathe with the instrumental tracks. Follow your heart like a metronome.
Miller's gentle, firm coaching succeeds. After spending a half hour to cut a four-minute vocal, Tice sounds natural, as if she's recording live with people rather than digital data. Her tough victory is celebrated in the pine-paneled, lodge-like control room of Signal Sound Studio, where Tice has made three of her four recordings. Everyone at the studio knows the sacrifices the single mother with two teens and four jobs is making to work eight days with Miller, a much better-known musician who, for the first time in his 27-year career, is producing a record for someone other than himself.
Read the entire article -
The Allentown Chronicle
"Center Valley Folk Singer to Release Fourth Album"
Add two parts Joni Mitchell for taste, a cup of Lucinda Williams for flavor, a dash of Patti Smith for tang and a sprinkle of Carole King.
Bake for 10 years, ice it with four independent albums and top it off with a juicy national songwriting award. When hot, she will serve 6.3 billion people.
Fill up on the folk you’ve grown to love and finish it off with an enticing Jackie Tice dessert.
“If you asked me 20 years ago if I’d have record deals, songs in movies and radio and all those career-oriented values and fame, I wouldn’t have believed you,” Jackie said. “Although they’re nice to have, the most important is the art of creating music and the space in life to do that…”
Jackie Tice, of Center Valley, will be a catalyst in the evolution of folk music, and with her fourth independent release, “Second Skin,” on the way, she’s not packing up her guitar anytime soon.
Read the entire article -
Morning Call ( March 2003) "In These Bones" is an ideal title for Jackie Tice's third recording, a collection of cutting confessions
and resonant resolutions inspired by the Center Valley resident's paintings. It sounds Celtic, Native
American, downright tribal. Tice's melodies caress, her rhythms prick, her gliding voice bears pleasure and pain
equally easily. All about balancing anima, animus, and animal spirits, "In These Bones" nests under the skin." - Geoff
Philadelphia City Paper ( July 2001)
"...Melding an expressive acoustic guitar with a soul- searching voice, Tice's music is elegantly folky." -
Dirty Linen (Jan/Feb 1999)
"...there's commentary on the passing of time and material things in
"Silver Coin" and on tangled and bitter family relationships in
"Once Like You" and "Rachel". She's very good at this aspect
of writing, but even more interesting is the glimpse of something more
direct and less narrative that comes through in the title track."
Crossroads (Nov. 1998) "In the ever-present sea of
contemporary releases, this is a stand-out."
Acoustic Guitar (Oct. 1998) "A delectable collection of
musically buoyant and lyrically brave tunes - folk-rock with Native
American spirituality...Tice's songs capture instances of universal
recognition and appeal. He ode to a Dublin pub, 'The Marijo
Tonight', is a guitar player's 'Piano Man' and as bittersweet
as John Prine's 'Angel from Montgomery'."
Sing Out! (Winter/98) "A sweet and lilting album laced
the with buoyant spirit of the artist...this work does vividly recall the
feel of [Joni] Mitchell's Hejira album."
JAM Magazine, Italy (Feb 1998) "...her stylistic universe
floats above the vast galaxy of adult contemporary folk, borrowing accents
from Joni Mitchell's pre-Mingus period...an elegant acoustic-electric
project centered around the clear, silvery vocals of the artist.."
Express-Times (Jan 1998) "...Jackie Tice's songs wear
well. With each listen, a fine patina of subdued passion or restrained
ardor is added. It's [her] unsentimental stance and observant eye that
give Tice's songs their edge."
WFMT, Chicago "The Midnight Special" (Rich Warren): 1998 Best New Songwriter
WCUW, Worcester (Richard Fox) "An eloquent storyteller
whose songs elevate common experience with subtle layers of meaning,
Jackie's messages are delivered memorably amid graceful, emotive
performance. This recording gets better with each listen."
Lucinda Williams - "I love your songs!" (At the 1996 Kerrville New
Folk Awards, where Jackie won and Lucinda was one of the judges.)
Christine Lavin - "The Marijo Tonight is a modern-day classic."
Christopher Moore, author of Coyote Blue
(inspiration for the song, Blue Coyote) - "Tice's music resonates
with both a sense of place and a place in the heart."