Twigs of the Neem Tree
'There's an organic, deliciously weathered quality to this collection that brings a coherence..what strikes most is Jon's subtle but confident compositional skills. A slow-burning delight!' Irish Times review 13/08/10 Twigs of the Neem Tree is a collection of original compositions and arrangements written for bouzouki and tenor ukulele that take the listener on a journey across the world. I'm a specialist in playing Irish music on ukulele and bouzouki and have gathered round me some of the finest session musicians on the circuit today to accompany me. On this album you'll find a set of west Kerry polkas and an arrangement of the blind Irish harper Turloch O'Carolan's Draught, specially for ukulele. There's also a song written with Dave Alley that celebrates the great single malt from the Glen Garioch distillery in Inverurie, Scotland; a jazz funk bouzouki track with sublime drumming from Australian percussion genius Greg Sheehan; a couple of film soundtrack like pieces, one dedicated to Gabriel Garcia Marquez book Love in the Time of Cholera - written as a bouzouki duet , and the other as a B movie track with scary saw from Berlin's Toni Geiling. The title of the album comes from my fascination with herbal medicine, in this case the Indian Neem Tree which is a veritable cure for many conditions and, as music is a therapy, I feel that each track represents a cure or tonic for the vagaries of everyday life. I finish witha meditative piece that celebrates being in the now and evokes Vipassana teachings. Instrumentation includes bouzouki, tenor ukulele, sarangi, accordian, cello, viola, violin, percussion, guitar, saw, piano, flute, vocal, Indian harmonium and slide guitar played by artists from Australia and New Zealand, California, Germany, Ireland and England. West Kerry Live reviewer Mik O'Hare says 'The whole CD is a therapeutic journey through music that shows Jon's love of the bouzouki and ukulele. If music is therapy, then Jon Sanders has a degree in it. The Bard of the Bouzouki and the Duke of Uke!' This is my third album and extends the theme of the previous Latitudes album which the Irish Times noted for it's 'uncanny musical curiosity that refuses to be boxed in'.