John Renbourn / Stefan Grossman

Snap a Little Owl

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Snap a Little Owl is a compilation album drawn from two previously released LPs. It contains ten of the 12 tracks from Stefan Grossman and John Renbourn, plus three tracks ("Water Gypsy," "Idaho Potato," and "All Things Parallel Must Converge") from the second Grossman/Renbourn studio collaboration, Under the Volcano. The contrasting styles of the two guitarists, and their willingness to listen to and spark off of each other, are what make the music enjoyable. The British Renbourn is the more careful and traditional player, creating textured patterns with classical antecedents. The American Grossman, steeped in ragtime, jazz, and blues, tends to embellish the tracks with his expressive lead work. The rationale for the compilation is not obvious, but the contents are satisfying.

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