Cantilena Offers a Peaceful “Good Night” for Baby
Cantilena: Night Songs from Around the World, released September 21, is a lovely goodnight for babies everywhere. Combining the talents of two artists, classical guitarist Hilary Field and vocalist Patrice O’Neill, Cantilena is a collection of lullabies from nearby and faraway places—including Sweden, Great Britain, Romania, Argentina, Sicily, Japan, and Venezuela.
Each calming song is sweetly rendered by O’Neill, and the gentle guitar accompaniment makes it the perfect complement to sleep time.
Also featured on Cantilena are virtuoso acoustic duo Mike Marshall and Darol Anger, Grammy award-winning English hornist Nancy Rumbel, clarinetist Andy Connell, David Lange (piano and accordion), Garey Shelton (bass), and principal musicians from the Seattle Symphony and Pacific Northwest Ballet orchestras.
Cantilena’s songs are a splendid way to end the day. The Japanese “Edo Komoriuta/Takeda No Komoriuta” is a rich tapestry of voice and guitar; an Argentine lullaby, “Arroro,” is haunting. This is an album that adults can enjoy as they unwind and de-stress after a hectic day, and share with their children during quiet time.
Particularly lovely are the first cut “Castle of Dramore” (Ireland) and “La Vo’” (Sicily). The fourteen songs on Cantilena are sung in their original languages; fans of world music will find them a particular delight.
Music is an appropriate introduction to the many cultures of the world; we don’t need to understand the words to enjoy the emotions they express. These songs are centered on one emotion—nurturing love—and it is well expressed in their performance.
Bottom Line: Would I buy Cantilena? Yes, it would make a thoughtful baby, baby shower, or Christening gift, perhaps tucked in a soft, comforting blanket.