Irish Music Magazine, October 2009, by John Brophy
Stefano Corsi is the harp player with the group Whisky Trail, and that's a group whose inspiration is Giulia Lorimer. A lot of his Irish angle comes from Melita Cataldi, professor of Irish Literature at the University of Turin.
Stefano is a very fine player on Celtic harp, wire strung (good Lad!), with mouth organ on top, like a bardic Bob Dylan. Times, they are a changing...
There's even a bit of double track Port a' Bheal (mouth music), and a reference to fairies. Standards here are Mn? na hEireann and Sliabh na mNban.
I'm not sure it's a good idea to set music to poems by W.B. Yeats. Except the Sally Gardens, there doesn't appear to have been acceptance of him.
None of which should divert us from the central point that Stefano is a very fine player who is helping take the wire-strung harp out of museum land and back into playing areas.
Folk Bulletin, december 2009, Enrico Lucchesi
Founding member of the Whisky Trail, a prototypical ensemble of Irish-sounding music still active in Italy today, Stefano Corsi is one of the major Italian soloist of the Celtic harp, making ?Trails for Celtic Harp? a sincere homage to his favorite instrument. A compilation of composed pieces (some written by Corsi himself) and some traditional, it opens with the classic 'Mna na Erinn' by Sean O'Riada (perhaps the most well-known piece from the first Irish revival, the one that took place in the 'sixties) and finishes purposely with 'To Ireland in the coming Times', renown poem by William Butler Yeats, composed with musical intensity and interpreted with great feeling. In this work, homage is given to O'Carolan (Planxty Irwin), and to the old Whisky Trail (?Miriana? composed with Velemir Dugina, unforgettable violinist of the group who died tragically in 1983) along with the recent one ('There is a Woman', written by Corsi with Vieri Bugli). With the same precision he always shows on the metal strings, with just a few touches the protagonist of this record also reveals his talent with his voice, the harmonica [mouth-organ] and the harmonium, a real one-man band portraying a delicate and potentially melancholic atmosphere, yet capable of giving those sudden and surprising leaps of energy that make traditional Irish music loved around the world. A deep-set record with a chamber music feel, it cannot gather great crowds but allows for infinite pleasure and subsequent involvement, helping us move into another dimension together with the butterflies coming out of the harp, elegantly drawn by Stephen Alcorn, that ideally close the booklet. One man, his instrument and lots of love to share. Need I say more..?
Reality, december 2009, Claudio Guerrini
There are records where you can immerse yourself in the music a bit more than others, and they are those where the author leads us into his very life by entwining his artistic and personal path. This is when music becomes a more defined journey and we feel like taking the same trail over and over until every detail of the scenery becomes part of us ? which is why I would like this time to talk about records...and journeys. ? Music of the woods is like harp playing, a melody leading to perfect peace?. There couldn?t be a more perfect phrase to describe the sounds of Stefano Corsi, harpist of Whisky Trail, whose last work, Chaosmos, we reviewed in our April edition. ?Trails for Celtic harp? will open another dimension. Starting with the first pizzicato chords of the opening piece, ?Mna Na Eirinn? will take you by the hand and lead you barefooted under mystic Irish skies that eventually turn into magical nocturnal designs in ?Stars?. In ?To Ireland in the coming times?, Stefano wraps us with his reassuring voice and covers us with a warm blanket to protect us from the cold, while ?Blarney Pilgrim? brings out the dancing devil in us. This work is like a Guinness, you can drink it in one gulp but you can sip it also slowly to taste its nuances.
Migrapolis Deutschland, august 2009, Michael Schmiedel
Stefano Corsi plays in the Florentine group of Irish and Scottish music Whisky Trail, and here he is now without musicians around, as soloist. The cover photo shows him sitting at the harp. The music is typical for Celtic harp, marvelous, beautifully dreamlike, and while I listen, to my spiritual eye appear images of fortresses, rocks and Atlantic Coast woods. Unusual, in some tracks, is the combination of Celtic harp with the mouth harmonica, who has a curious homonymy in English with Celtic harp: mouth harp. Though a mouth harp resembles a harp, as a turtle resembles a toad.
It seems to me that the pieces for harp receive something different and blues-like with the mouth harmonica, making our dreams happy. Some tracks have a fast and galloping rhythm as in 'Esajig'. In other tracks an harmonium and the voice of Stefano unite to the harp. We find the three texts that Stefano sings in the booklet, one in Gaelic, the other two in English, and all three translated into Italian.
Those who know Whisky Trail may recognize in some of the pieces, the music in harp version of one of the last Cds of the group: Chaosmos.
Stefano Corsi convinces not only as member of Whisky Trail but also as soloist: really a splendid record!
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