Fiddles & Feet 4 Fiddles 14 Feet

"Unmitigated joy” is the only way to describe the sound that jumps off this less-than-commercial, straightforward little disc, the brainchild of Gordon Tucker and his class of fiddle protégés. Tucker comes by the adrenalised music that pumps through his veins honestly, in the tradition of the Maritimes and the spirit of people coming together to celebrate the good times and bad. Three of four fiddles belong to three young girls (Alyca Putnam, Laura Lee Marshall, Alisha Hannam, aged 12 to 17) from central Nova Scotia, the fourth being Tucker’s own. The six extra feet belong to mandonlinist Janelle Putnam plus Robert Putnam on guitar and Liam Tucker on acoustic bass. Together, this ensemble have been playing for a year but they play as one. Born of the need to supply local events and corporate functions with authentic, tourist-friendly Cape Breton music, Fiddles & Feet go on to inject their enthusiastic treatment of traditional fare with hints of country, down-home swing and, thanks to Tucker, a hint of blues. The fiddles are the focus here — as evidenced in their grasp of three-part harmony on Bob Wills’s "Rose of San Antone.” But one listen to the group’s overall presentation tells you that the music’s clearly at home in their hands. (Independent)