Carla Sciaky

Carla Sciaky


We pick songs that we love and put them through a treatment of strings, voices, winds and reeds. Our repertoire matches Carla's originals and other contemporary works with traditional British and Irish tunes and an occasional renovated classic.


From Hal:
In many ways playing with the Folkaltones is a way of gathering the diverse threads of my musical life. I’ve known Carla for many years, both as a friend and professionally (I designed many of her album covers back in her recording and touring days). Miriam and I met through our congregation, a Reconstructionist synagogue in Denver, where I now serve as part-time musical director and do a lot of songleading with Carla. Our lives are intertwined musically and socially, and it seemed natural that our next project together would be a small ensemble to explore songs and genres we’ve always loved and experiment with intricate textures. My old attraction to Celtic and traditional music has resurfaced, and it’s such a joy to put our spin on the work of songwriters we’ve long admired. Playing Carla’s original material is a pleasure and an honor. And what could be better in this world than singing Beatles songs?

From Miriam:
Through our synagogue I met Hal, who invited me to join his band, Los Lantzmun ( Playing with Los Lantzmun has introduced me to the rich and wonderful tradition of Jewish world music, which I had known very little about. In a real sense, it has put me back in touch with my heritage. Sherman Jacobs, Los Lantzmun’s amazing fiddler, inspired me to learn to play Klezmer clarinet. And last but not least, playing with Los Lantzmun gave me the chance to play with Hal, who is a mind-blowing musician, as well as a true mensch.
I got to know Carla when her family joined our synagogue “havurah,” though I had been in complete awe of her from afar for a long time. (I could happily sit and listen to Carla sing all night long!) Getting to know her better has been a real joy and an inspiration.

From Carla:
Somewhere in the middle of my identity crisis I began to play music in the synagogue with my old friend Hal Aqua, which led to playing music together outside the synagogue, like Beatles songs. And performing Irish music with fellow musician Miriam Rosenblum at occasional Swallow Hill Music Association (Denver’s main folk music school and concert venue) events, led to the two of us asking Miriam to join us for a concert in the spring of 2006. So now I get to admire Hal’s prowess on the many strings he strums and Miriam’s virtuosic wind and reed work while singing some of my favorite songs of all times! A pretty blissful way to live!


Hard Rock Bottom

Written By: Carla Sciaky

This is a hard rock bottom
That we’re standing on
Give me a sign that you’re listening to me
Tell me your dreams if you’ve got ‘em
So that I can keep hanging on
On and on and on and on and on

This is a brand new chapter
In our history
We didn’t learn any of this in school
They do not print a map for
This road for you and me
It’s new territory

This is not how I had planned
To deliver my heart to a man
Dangling between us on a time-worn strand

This is a time to enter
On unhallowed ground
I need a sign that you’re willing to go along
For it would be a cold, cruel winter
Alone and nowhere bound
Howling a lonely sound

This is a plea to lay it
On the table or where it falls
Get it all out, lay it on the line
If it’s a monster, we’ll slay it
And hang it upon the wall
A trophy for us all

The earth beneath us begins to shake
We dance around to find someplace safe
Close our eyes and embark on a leap of faith

I'll Dance With You

Written By: Carla Sciaky

Every step of the way
Every hour of the day
Every tune that the piper will play
I’ll dance with you

By the light of the moon
Or the sun at high noon
To a happy or a somber tune
I’ll dance with you

I’ll dance with you in velvet high fashion
I’ll dance with you in corduroy passion
Behind our bedroom door
On the ballroom floor
In a penthouse with a view
To our very own melody
I’ll dance with you

Keyboard or clarinet
Polka or pirouette
In Tallahassee or in Tibet
I’ll dance with you

Like butter and bread
Like a needle and thread
Cheek to cheek like Ginger and Fred
I’ll dance with you

I’ll dance with you when we’re tender and caring
I’ll dance with you when tempers are flaring
In matrimonial bliss
We will make up and kiss
Just like all true lovers do
And to the music of sweet forgiveness
I’ll dance with you

I’ll dance with you when they play the tango
I’ll dance with you a Spanish fandango
And when the music has stopped
And the band is packed up
The enchanted night is through
To the sound of your heartbeat
I’ll dance with you


2008 release: "Tuning Up" by the Folkaltones

Carla Sciaky's discography:
Wishes and Dreams (1997 on Alacazam!)
Awakening (1995 on Green Linnet)
Spin the Weaver's Song (1992 on Green Linnet)
The Undertow (1991 on Green Linnet)
Under the Quarter Moon (1988 on Propinquity)
Risselty Rosselty/The Peddlar's Pack (1986 on Propinquity)
In Between (1985 on Propinquity)
To Meet You (1982 on Propinquity)

with the Mother Folkers:
Confluence (1992 on Resounding Records)
Live from the Arvada Center (1987 on Propinquity)

with Propinquity:
Propinquity (originally 1972 on Owl Records, re-released 2007 by Numero)

Hal and Miriam with Los Lantzmun:
Lantzville (2002)
One World (2000)

Set List

For a concert, we usually do two sets of 45-55 minutes each. Here is a sample set:

1. Lark in the Morning (by Kate MacLeod)/Lark Reel (trad)
2. Things Behind the Sun (Nick Drake)
3. Deluded Lover (traditional Irish)
4. Hard Rock Bottom (Carla Sciaky)
5. Tell Me What You See (Lennon/McCartney)/8:05(Moby Grape)
6. Icarus (Anne Lister)
7. Listen to the Thunder (Jane Gillman)
8. Gipsies-O (traditional English)
9. I'll Dance With You (Carla Sciaky)
10. One Door Opens (Richard Thompson)/two Irish reels