Know Your Product
Beggar’s Ride: Beggar’s Ride
Published: October 19, 2011
Not sure which radars exactly Beggar’s Ride might be blipping on right now. Coffeehouse country-folk certainly compromises a scene/community of its own, just like any other kind of music with devotees, but Berkeley, Calif., Baltimore is not. A posted concert schedule has the Beggar’s Ride duo of Claudia SanSoucie and Kate Maguire kicking all around the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, from a coffeehouse/art space in Brooklyn, N.Y., to a winery in Pennsylvania and another coffeehouse, this time in Annapolis, on Saturday. After some three years of making music together, Beggar’s Ride has surely figured out its game trails. And, notably, it’s taken this long to get an album release. Perhaps worth the wait, the record’s plenty welcoming, an almost distractingly professional batch of tight acoustic tunes.
The Beggar’s Ride palette is pretty simple: two voices, two guitars, a brush of pedal steel here, a harmonica there. The record’s full of lonely numbers, lines like, “Sure as these days drag on, the years fly by/. . . when you’re home,” or, “Your memory remains here in darkness/ with the coming of another day/ each day’s passing is a blessing to the wounded.” Sad stuff. And with music to match: That steel seeps in at just the perfect moment to graze a heartstring, saddish and drawn voices channeling not so much sad twang heroes like Crystal Gayle or anything modern pop country, but a kind of subdued blue that’s almost indie. But still too polished for that—even a pop-leaning indie-folk band like Vetiver shows some dust every now and again. Could be that I’m just not terribly up on the world of coffeehouse folk/adult contempo folk, but it seems like Beggar’s Ride, on record, could use a bit of that dust, an errant crackle, to bring it more to life.
For more information visit beggarsride.com.
> Email Michael Byrne