New album with local connection tied to Gettysburg’s 150th anniversary

A group of singers and musicians from the Mid-Ohio Valley and beyond has released a concept album commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg.

An album release concert for “The Fields of Gettysburg” will be 8 p.m. Saturday at the Adelphia Music Hall in Marietta. Tickets are available at the Galley, 374-8278, and online at www.theadelphia.com

Using story and song, “The Fields of Gettysburg” album recounts the important Civil War battle during Gettysburg’s sesquicentennial year, July 1-3, 2013.

John A. Walsh of Vienna, Americana singer/songwriter, composed the song cycle of 12 tracks, complete with six historical characters and an interwoven narrative.

“The Fields of Gettysburg” tells the story of six Americans “whose lives intertwine in a tragic tale of intense duty and personal sacrifice, conflicted allegiance, young love dashed, and innocence lost.”

The album, released March 31, features singers and musicians who all hail from or live in the Appala-chian region. Singer songwriter Todd Burge of Parkersburg co-produced the album with Walsh and sings the role of Union Gen. John Buford. Walsh, a Marietta native, sings the role of Confederate Gen. James Longstreet and is the recording’s primary guitarist.

Buford and Longstreet are the moral bookends for the song cycle, Walsh said. Three childhood friends from Gettysburg, Pa., become entangled in a “curious scenario” as two of the characters find themselves on opposite sides at the Battle of Gettysburg.

Others involved in the musical project are Mountain Stage co-founder and host Larry Groce as the narrator, Grammy winner Tim O’Brien on fiddle, West Virginia Music Hall of Fame founder/director Michael Lipton on electric guitar, Mountain Stage band veteran Ammed Solomon on drums and percussion, Bill White of Marietta on piano and organ, and Carpenter Ant/Mountain Stage regular Ted Harrison on bass guitar.

Providing voice for the six characters, besides Walsh and Burge, are Jessica Baldwin as Mary Wade, Justin Arthur as Wesley Culp, Colton Pack as Jack Skelly and D.J. Archer as Jennie Wade.

Also contributing to the album are Julie Zickefoose playing the penny whistle, Cynthia Puls playing the cello, David George as co-executive producer/engineer (River Rat Studio in Marietta) and guitar and piano cameos, Josh Antonuccio as engineer (3 Elliott Studio, Athens) and Don Dixon with soundtrack mastering.

For more information visit www.thefieldsofgettysburg.com. The direct link to the album store is johnawalsh.bandcamp.com

The CD can be purchased at Stuff We All Give & Get (S.W.A.G.G.), 175 Front St., Marietta.