Tania Opland & Mike Freeman

Tania Opland & Mike Freeman

 Suquamish, Washington, USA
BandWorldAcoustic

Acoustic world music and song, on more instruments than any sane duo would travel with: hammered dulcimer, recorders, violin, ocarina, hurdy-gurdy, djembe... A great evening of music and entertainment for all, especially those seeking something a little off the beaten track.

Biography

"Quite simply one of the most original and interesting musical combinations you are ever likely to see!" Chester Folk Festival, UK

"Unquestionably the most talented duo we have ever had at this club; I've never seen so much variety in a single set." Matt Armour, The Song Loft, Milton Keynes, UK

Tania (from Anchorage, AK) and Mike (from Manchester, UK) met in England over a decade ago. Since then they've been back and forth across the Atlantic more times than they care to count, collecting music and musical influences everywhere they go. They're now unsure whether they live in Kitsap County, Washington, or County Kilkenny, Ireland.
Their music spans centuries and continents, and their concerts make it all just plain fun.

Lyrics

A River

Written By: Tania Opland

If I were a stone in a desert where the rain never fell,
I'd stand alone, solid and unchanging as the ages passed me by,
Warmed by the sun or whipped by bitter wind, I'd never know,
If I were a stone, self-content and self-sufficient, no ambition, no glory, no pain.

But I am a river, never choosing my own course, though I create it as I go.
I am a river, and though I don't know where I'm running
I rush headlong down from the mountains.
I am a river, and all I know for certain is that all ways lead to the sea.

And if I were a tree, I would know that where I stand is where I'd stay,
I'd win my place by fighting for every ray of light and every inch of soil.
I'd reach for the sky, overshadow all below me in my prime,
'Til my seedlings, in time, would consume me and replace me when I fell.

And if I were the wind, blowing freely through my lifetime,
No restrictions or guidelines to moderate my rages and whims,
The sound of my own voice would keep me from hearing
The cries of those I'd battered down and left behind, if I were the wind.

But I am a river, never choosing my own course, though I create it as I go.
I am a river, and though I don't know where I'm running
I rush headlong down from the mountains.
I am a river, and all I know for certain is that all ways lead to the sea.

And when I reach the ocean at the end of all my travelling
and tumbling down, will I lie easy then?
Something tells me in my restlessness and yearning I'll be tossing and turning
'Til my waves break into spray, and I can rain down on that mountaintop again.

Discography

Tania Opland & Mike Freeman:
Cut to Rhythms (2000)

Anne McCaffrey, Tania Opland & Mike Freeman:
The Masterharper of Pern (1998)
Sunset's Gold (2009)

Tania Opland (re-releases):
Hunter's Moon (formerly 'Bonnie Rantin' Lassie')(2005)
Winter's Time (2010)
Tania Opland (2009)
Choice Fare (with Mike Freeman)(1996)

Set List

Usually 45 minutes a side for concert sets and 45 minutes to an hour for festival sets, or whatever the venue calls for.
No typical setlist - it changes every night, based on who's in the audience and what they seem to be interested in.
Here's a sample recent setlist:
An Caillin Fion (trad, Irish)
Somewhere in America (Eric Bogle, Australia)
Navvy on the Line/Brown Box/St Joseph’s Reel (trad, Irish/Quebecois)
Lighter Side of Blue (Billy Forrester, Suquamish WA)
Bear Dance/Buffon/Rufty Tufty (trad, Flemish/French/English)
Katyusha (public domain, Russia)
When I was in my Prime (trad, English)
Styrman’s Waltz/Lokkerin Waltz (trad, Norwegian)
Borderlands (Danny Carnahan, San Rafael CA)

Grey Funnel Line (Cyril Tawney, UK)
Whistle Tune (M. Freeman/T. Opland)
I’ll Tell me Ma/Kerry Polkas (trad, Irish)
Tsadik Katamar (trad, Israeli)
Julian of Norwich (Sydney Carter, UK)
Gypsy tune (trad, Turkish Gypsy)
Oor Hamlet (Adam McNaughton, Scotland)
Kupalinka (trad, Byelorussian)