The Muses
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The Muses

Band Folk Celtic


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Letter of Recommendation"

To whom it may concern,

I recently selected The Muses (Tanya Brody and Matt Gurnsey) to perform a concert at our library. Their music and singing were delightful and they were entertaining and fun as well. The audience consisted of people from age five to eighty five and everyone enjoyed the performance. We received great feedback, as it was the perfect family evening at the Chili Public Library!

If you were looking for a creative, interesting and entertaining program for your organization, I would highly recommend The Muses!

Sandra E. Roether
Vice President
Friends of the Chili Public Library - Sandra E. Roether - Vice President Friends of the Chili Public Library

""Tramps and Hawkers" Review"

"The Muses are a fine and rootsy, small group acoustic band. They are superb multi-instrumentalists, yet they put much more emphasis on the Celtic harp and concertina - there is some excellent concertina work on "The Road to Lisdoonvarna/Swallowtail Jig" and "Health to the Company". The duo plays mainly traditional Irish and Scottish music with harp, concertina, subtle guitar, tasteful middle-Eastern percussion, fiddles and low whistle.

"Their renditions of drinking songs sound a little strange - it's as if though the singers need a wee bit more in their glasses (their unusually tame version of "Whiskey You're the Devil comes to mind here) but their instruments, (and their owners) never fail to keep the beat . Not that this retracts from the group's musicianship in any way but rarely have I heard a Celtic group turn a usually rowdy song into a slow one However the version of the traditional Scottish drinking song "Health to the Company' is top-notch. Tanya's vocals are perfectly angelic and Matt's vocals have just the right amount of a Scottish lilt to them to make the song an authentic Celtic ballad. Other note-worthy tracks include "Band of Shearers", "Leatherwing Bat", and "Nonesuch". They just don't write or play songs like this anymore...pick this acoustic gem up if you need a CD for cozy listening at home or...I guess cozy listening at home is enough....or pick it up simply if you're a Celtic music fan. This Celtic music fan recommends it for sure."

-DJ Sterling, of "Globe Gab W/DJ Sterling" - WWPV 88.7-FM "The Mike.
- DJ Sterling, of "Globe Gab W/DJ Sterling" - WWPV 88.7-FM "The Mike.

"Radio DJ Quotes"

As a music host, I always endevor to play the best music I can find for my listeners. I have played your music in the past and intend to play it in the future, and as a music host, no higher praise can be given.

Norm Whitman - Detours - WYSO

"This CD (Tramps and Hawkers) is hauntingly beautiful, and very refreshing. Takes you back to a long forgotten time and place that still seems somehow familiar."

- Carmen Allgood - The Colorado Wave

This is as good a Celtic record as I've heard in years. The record
sounds good on both our New Age and World music programs.

Eric Cohen - Music Director
WAER Radio - Syracuse
- Varied

""Passing Time" by The Muses"

copyright 2005
This review is written by Kevin McCarthy, 6/06
"Kevin's Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews"

Lots of whoops and hollers. Infectious to the degree that it's difficult to remain sedate. A expresso blend of celtic music.

The pattern in these descriptive lines aptly characterizes The Muses' musical style. Not that they don't also intersperse the softer and slower-paced along with the brisk--they do--but boldness is the leitmotif of Tanya Brody and Matt Gurnsey, The Muses.

Combining harp, guitar, pennywhistle, hammered dulcimer, bodhran, mandola and concertina (the primary instruments of Brody's and Gurnsey's repertoire), along with guests adding violin, keyboards and bagpipe drones, all combine for a veritable celtic orchestra.

"Cape Cod Girls," a sea shanty not anywhere near an east coast version of "California Girls," opens the release. Penned by Brody, "The Ballad of Jack O'the Lantern," sounds as traditional as that of anything from a couple of centuries ago. "Jack Haggerty" is among the most enjoyable cuts here, aided by this classic lament from the mouth of a spurned and sorrowful raftsman suitor: "...To cast off the riggings that God was to tie..."
Written by Ron Hynes, the engaging "Sonny's Dream" depicts a would-be sailor landlocked by his allegiance to his mother. "The Bonny Ship The Diamond" is a whaling song most different--it's optimistic with nary a disaster befalling the crew. It's followed by the equally sanguine "Little Beggarman."

Robert Burns' epic masterpiece, "Tam O'Shanter," is given a superb go here. Just sit back and enjoy the imagery framed in these particular lines:

"...gathering her brows like gathering storm
nursing her wrath to keep it warm...

...but pleasures are like poppies spread
you seize the flower, its bloom is shed...

...the carlin caught her by the rump
and left poor Maggie scarce a stump..."
Bob Stuart's calming "Come For To Sing" appropriately concludes the release.

Although certainly still enjoyable and worthwhile, inclusion of the lyrics would be a major plus for following the songs in this release. Do enjoy this collection of songs and the music that surrounds them. - "Kevin's Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews"

"Letter of Recommendation"

Dear Tanya, 8 June2004
It was a pleasure to have you and Mat share your musical talent with us at the Savannah Scottish Games on May the 8th. Beside the great entertainment the Muses offer, I appreciated the involvement and participation you. allowed the audience. This is one of the benefits of small games where audience can get close to an entertainer, and you feel like the entertainment is entertaining you, not Just being "the entertainment” .

Being able to fit into any situation and setting, whether it was informal under the stars or formal setting gave me a sense that you were in your element no matter the venue. Your dress and style was a perfect match for the Savannah Games From a very personal standpoint, I most appreciated the few minutes between the games and the ceilihd when the temperatures dropped, and we could just sit around and listen and sing as friends even though we had just become acquainted After a long, day, you can probably appreciate what that meant to me. And you still had the ceilidh to go.
I believe that we will continue to have the games at J.F. Gregory Park (but that is a decision that the board has yet to make), and hope that you enjoyed the Games enough that you. will consider returning next year. Tentatively we are considering a change for the 2005 Games schedule that would move the G Games to the first weekend in May. If you have starting making plans for the year we would love to have you back and you may consider yourself invited. I will keep you informed of the decisions for the weekend and the site as they become more fact.
You may be assured at I will recommend you to other games organizers when asked, and when we are visiting games will speak. highly of you so that when it comes time for them to make decisions on entertainment, you will be in the first draft.
All the best for your year of entertaining before we see you again.

Yours Aye,
Gil Clarke
Savannah Scottish Games and Highland Gathering


- Gil Clarke - Savannah Scottish Games

"The Muses - Tramps and Hawkers"

"Tramps & Hawkers"
by The Muses
copyright 2004
This review is written by Kevin McCarthy, 5/05
"Kevin's Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews"

What the listener will notice right away on this release is the vocal interplay and harmonies between Tanya Brody and Matthew Gurnsey, who comprise The Muses. The couple have on-going separate musical careers and this is their first collaboration.

Brody's is the stronger voice, akin in sound and range to Canadian singer Loreena McKennitt. Gurnsey provides the male counterpoint. Throughout the offerings, they trade lead and background vocals, in addition to the harmonies. But it is Brody's voice in particular that lends a delicate, almost classical music sound and element to the recording.

A somewhat eclectic group of songs, plus one instrumental, are presented. All are traditional save for a couple by The Muses and ones penned by Tom Waits and Andy M. Stewart. The theme throughout twists and turns around the vagaries of relationships and wandering the world.

The release leads with "Band O' Shearers." Times have certainly changed as a request nowadays for a loved one's hand with the 'incentive' of performing the extremely hard task of shearing would not bring forth many positive responses. The love theme continues with "The Briar and the Rose." Given such a touching operatic/celtic feel, its authorship by Tom Waits is difficult to believe. "Leatherwing" is a cute litany of animals grousing about the difficulties of love. In "Gypsy Hawk," an innkeeper gets a second chance at amor and goes for it, leaving his sedate life behind.

The gentle rhythm of "Mingulay Boat Song" is as seductive as that of the sailors' memories of home. "Nonesuch" is bursting with nature references, while the old chestnut "Wild Mountain Thyme" sparkles with Gurnsey and Brody trading verses and sharing choruses.

Andy M. Stewart's humorous "Ramblin' Rover" actually has a serious point--that of experiencing most everything life has to offer as being a far better choice than living in a safe cocoon of dull repetitiveness. The traipsing about continues in "Tramps and Hawkers." This is the traditional offering, not the more familiar version adapted by the late Jim Ringer.

And how could any celtic music release be called such without a tribute to the drink? But no, "Whiskey You're The Devil" is not Shane MacGowan's autobiography.

Journeying, adoration and imbibing are all unregrettably combined in the closing cut "Health to the Company."

Overall, it is the vocals and the crisp instrumentation of Brody and Gurnsey here that make this release stand out and apart from others in the celtic genre.

This duo is a veritable two-person band: Brody plays harp, guitar, hammered dulcimer, bodhran, zils and acoustic bass, while Gurnsey's repertoire consists of concertina, bowed psaltery, acoustic bass, bodhran, hammered dulcimer, penny whistle, mandolin, bones, dumbek and bells.

- Kevin McCarthy - "Kevin's Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews"

"Press Paragraph"

The Muses - Celtic Music with Zing!

If you don't know what is worn under a Scotsman's kilt, or what it feels like to have your imagination filled with Irish mist covering green fields... or especially if you do, you'll want to catch The Muses live! Tanya Brody plays the harp, hammered dulcimer, penny whistle, and many more instruments, but it is her angelic voice that will captivate your heart. Matthew Gurnsey plays the concertina, bodhran, bowed psaltery, mandolin and many others while singing along with a contagious sparkle in his eye that is sure to make you smile. Together and along with friends they bring in for certain shows, they are an inspiring trip to the Celtic Isles saving you the price of airfare!
   Touring across the United States and Canada, The Muses will be performing locally! The Muses have shared the stage with The Glen Garry Bhoys, Alex Beaton, Rathkiltar, Michi Regier, and others. They play Scottish/Irish festivals and games from coast to coast (including some islands) and never miss an opportunity to entertain at an Irish pub when they have a moment to spare. With beautiful voices creating bewitching vocal harmony, The Muses are a Celtic experience you'll not want to miss - The Muses

"Letter of Recommendation"

To Whom It May Concern:

It was again a true pleasure to have The Muses perform at our Tucson Celtic Festival and Scottish Highland Games. We brought them back after their stellar performances last year to be one of the main attractions at our 20th Annual event.
Their performance at our Friday evening Ceilidh helped to energize and prepare us all for the hurly burly of the day of the festival which was to dawn in a very few short hours. On Saturday they filled our huge main tent with song and laughter from a capacity crowd. They have a very professional and lively performance style that keeps people interested and entertained even between the songs.
The Muses have expanded their group in this last year to include two wonderful musicians (Rebecca Trombly and Michi Reiger) that complement Matt and Tanya and increase the musical diversity of their set. Always involving and humorous, their show attracts a lot of attention, drawing the crowd into the tent. This is a show that any Highland Games would benefit from having on their performance roster.

Yours truly,

Richard Park
Entertainment Chair
Tucson Celtic Festival Association
- Richard Park - Tucson Celtic Festival

"Letter of Recommendation"

November 15, 2005

Dear Program coordinator,

Recently the Missoula Public Library hosted a musical program by the Muses as part of their tour of Montana libraries. It turned out to be one of the most entertaining evening events that we have ever sponsored. Tanya and Matt are both very talented singers and musicians, and their enthusiasm and showmanship are unsurpassed.

Although they perform primarily Celtic/Irish ballads, their program included a wide variety of musical pieces (many of which they wrote) and styles which enabled them to exhibit fully the range of their talents. The audience that evening represented virtually every age group, and everyone had a great time. We received a number of favorable comments after the show.

If you are looking for programs that are both educational and highly entertaining, then the Muses should certainly fill the bill. We would recommend them without reservation.


Don Spritzer
Reference Librarian/Adult programming coordinator

- Don Spritzer - Missoula Public Library

"Letter of Recommendation"

The Muses at the Chanhassen Library on Dec. 28, 2005

I booked The Muses after learning that they were going to be in town over winter break, and after I listened to their music on their web site. The Friends of the Library sponsor our performances, so we are really lucky.

The Muses were good about keeping in touch, and sent posters, and other publicity information (which was a big help- the digital photo I sent out was used by several of the newspapers).

The performance was amazing- their energy and enthusiasm was obvious, and the packed room loved every minute of the concert. Over 100 people attended, all ages from babies to people with walkers. About half of the audience talked to me afterwards, and thanked me and the Friends of the Library profusely for hosting the event, and told me how impressed they were with the group.

This is a group I would book again with no hesitation. Their professionalism and talent is manifested in all they do.

Kathy Perschmann
Assistant Branch Manager
Chanhassen Library
PO Box 1130
7711 Kerber Blvd.
Chanhassen MN 55317
- Kathy Perschmann - Chanhassen Public Library


The Muses - Live!
The Muses - Live! DVD
The Muses; Tramps and Hawkers
The Muses; Passing Time
The Muses have been played on the air all over this country, as well as Canada, Austrailia, New Zealand, Scotland, N. Ireland, Germany, France and Israel



Tanya Brody and Matthew Gurnsey play a plethora of exotic instruments ranging from bohdran & concertina to harp & guitar; psaltery and pennywhistles to name just a few. Their vocal harmonies have made people laugh, cry and feel everything in between.

The Muses add new life and vibrancy to old songs as well as adding exciting original material to the Celtic repertoire. Since the moment they chose to blend their voices in song they began captivating the hearts and minds of every audience from Hawaii to Maine, Vancouver to Florida, weddings and pubs to libraries, colleges and universities, concert series, and main-stages at Scottish Games and Celtic Festivals. The Muses perform with a ferocity and strength of heart that embodies the music they love so dearly.

Seeking the return of traditional Celtic folk songs by adding a new twist (and on a stage overflowing with instruments), The Muses breathe new life into a music that will never die. “Through our music you can feel the green shamrocks underfoot, catch the aroma of a distant salt sea, and taste the highland rain upon your lips.”

“ Venues that are able to schedule a concert by the Muses should consider themselves lucky!”
- Anne Emerick (Presenter of Wisteria Ways House Concert Series.)

"Like early Clancy Brothers, hale and hardy."
- Stuart Meyers (WRFG - FM Atlanta, GA)
“This is a show that any Highland Games would benefit from having on their performance roster.”
- Richard Park (Entertainment Chair Tucson Celtic Festival Association)
“It was a great show-engaging and full of humor. Thank you for encouraging student involvement during your performance and sharing your amazing talents with our community.”
- Angela B. Taylor (Assistant Director of Student Activities & Greek Affairs, Georgetown College)

“Overall it is the vocals and the crisp instrumentation of Brody and Gurnsey that make them stand out and apart from others in the Celtic genre”
- Kevin McCarthy (Celtic and Folk Music Reviews)

“They have a chemistry that sparks. They may play many instruments between them but their voices are their greatest treasure”
- Antonio Santos (President , Scots-American Society of Brevard)

“Besides the great entertainment The Muses offer, I appreciated the involvement and the participation they allowed the audience. You feel like they are entertaining you, not just being ‘the entertainment’.”
- Gil Clarke (President, Savannah Scottish Games)

“We received great feedback… It was the perfect family evening at the Chili Public Library”
- Sandra E. Roether (Vice President, Friends of the Chili Public Library)