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Steve Key: Discography

The Investment - CD

Order now at  The Investment CD"The Investment" is a three-decade journey through my writing career, and covers a wide range of material, from funny topical songs to reflective ballads. It's a compilation of previously released tracks from CDs that are now out of print. Seven are from 1990's "New Hope", the only CD I released with backing musicians on drums, bass, dobro, violin, piano, harmonies. The rest are just my guitar and me (and an audience on the the live tracks). Lyrics and recording credits are posted here:

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"House Blend"

2003 release, recorded at house concerts in Maryland in May 2002, with separate tracks for songs and intro's. Includes funny songs like "Oat Bran Muffins" and "Sale-ing", ballads like "Home is the Place" and "Your Old Grand Dad"
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Fast Folk Musical Magazine

Fast Folk June 1985I recorded four songs for Fast Folk, starting with the June 1985 release, where my song "Somebody Still Cares" was side one, track one of the vinyl release. They also recorded my performance of "Record Time" at Fast Folk's 10th Anniversary Concert at the Bottom Line nightclub in New York, where Kathy Mattea heard the song. It was a 3-night event. Josh Joffen brought my song to the show, and performed it on the night Kathy was there. I got to perform it on opening night, sharing the stage with Jack Hardy, Suzanne Vega, Pierce Pettis, Lucy Kaplansky, Dave Van Ronk, Richard Shindell and many more. Fast Folk is now distributed by Smithsonian Folkways. You can order custom CDs or cassettes, downloads too.

Smithsonian Folkways

Enter my name in the Quick Search box, and you should find all of the Fast Folk samplers I was on between 1985-92.

"Record Time (33, 45, 78)"

1992 was a good year for my songs. Kathy Mattea discovered this song that year, releasing it in the fall on her Mercury/Polygram CD, "Lonesome Standard Time". Pittsburgh-based artist Anne Feeney also cut it that year, on her "Look to the Left" album, also recorded in Nashville.

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Anne Feeney's "Look to the Left" CD


covered by two husband-wife duos: Indiana's Noah & Irene Carver, on their CD, "You're Always There", and in live performance by Iowa's Michelle & Scott Dalziel (Michelle also sings a version of my song, "Welcome to My Real Job", using my chorus and her verses).

Noah & Irene Carver

"Brother You Never Had"

freyda.jpgThis song was recorded by the trio Freyda & Acoustic AttaTude (their spelling) on the Red House Records label. Bob Vasile sang lead, with harmonies and fiddling by Freyda Epstein, upright bass by Ralph Gordon. Freyda was killed in a car wreck in 2003. Red House re-released this CD, with proceeds to benefit a scholarship in Freyda's name. Freyda was an amazing singer, musician, teacher and dancer. And this is a magical recording; I'm honored to have my song included.

Red House Records

My song is listed on the record as simply "Brother".

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The early-'80s Trapezoid line-up (Freyda Epstein, Ralph Gordon, Paul Reisler, and Lorraine Duisit) applied tightly arranged harmonies and rhythms to Appalachian instruments and motifs with such precision and beauty that they became the best American example of the chamber-folk genre. Singer/fiddler Epstein and bassist Gordon have now formed a new trio with guitarist Bob Vasile called Freyda & Acoustic AttaTude, and Midnight at Cabell Hall goes a long way toward capturing that old Trapezoid sound. The album was recorded live (though without an audience) at the University of Virginia's Old Cabell Hall with the "Stereo Microphone Technique," which tapes the room sound rather than the sound coming right off the instruments. This approach provides a warmer, richer sound and captures this trio's highly attuned rapport. --Geoffrey Himes

"Oat Bran Muffins"

First song of mine to be recorded by someone other than me! Greg Trafidlo & Laura Pole (of the Roanoke VA area) recorded it twice: on their 1992 CD, "Read My Heart to Me" and a later CD made for their Caregiver Programs entitled, "To Those Who Feel".
Greg & Laura's current trio, also featuring Neal Phillips.

"Here for the Runnin'"

This song was co-written with Lanny Sherwin, who also recorded it on his CD, "Turn Up the Music". Lanny Sherwin's It was also  recorded by DC-area folk singer-songwriter Doug Alan Wilcox (Small Town CD); Canadian duo Sweet Harmony, produced by Alan Rhody (For the Runnin' CD); Nashville-based vocalist Sheri Lynn DiGiovanna (who also recorded Broken Branches on her debut CD).  

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Hungry For Music Sampler CDs

Steve has recorded several tracks on CDs produced by the nonprofit Hungry for Music. A Holiday Feast Vol. 5 includes the Key original Christmas Hideaway; Vol. 6 includes Steve's rendition of On Christmas I Got Nothing (by Chuck Brodsky). Diamond Cuts (Turning Two) features Steve's performance of the song Shoeless Joe Jackson (by Jeff Deitchman).
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Capital Acoustic v.1, 2 & 3

Steve compiled 3 CDs which sample the diverse folk talents of the Washington DC area. On Vol. 1, the 17 tracks includes Steve Key's "Oat Bran Muffins", recorded live at the legendary Birchmere nightclub. Also includes tracks by Magpie, Pete Kennedy, Bill Danoff, Mary Chapin Carpenter's sidemen John Jennings and Jon Carroll, and many more. Sponsored by the Institute of Musical Traditions,
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Or go to the House of Musical Traditions in Takoma Park MD.