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BEN SANDS - Take Your Time SCD1029

To describe Ben Sands as the quiet one of the Sands Family would be akin to calling this the white page in this magazine.

Laid back would be a good description of Tommy, Colum, Anne and Ben. But he is always the one in the shadows, calmly playing some fine music on mandolin or guitar and just occasionally stepping forward for a song.

Now, after recording some twenty albums with other members of the family and touring worldwide with them for nearly quarter of a century, he has finally put together a beautifully relaxed album of his own.

"Take Your Time" allows his instrumental talents to shine on a couple of home-made tune sets but otherwise showcases his restrained singing style on a selection of nine songs. These include the traditional "Willie Archer", with a catchy whistle refrain from Brendan Monaghan, songs by Allan Taylor, Ian Walker and Micky McConnell and four of his own. The latter are in the family tradition, well crafted insights into life as a travelling musician and the friends around him.

All in all, the last member of the family to take the limelight has come up with a fine album which is already getting plenty of radio play and will bring pleasure to many.

Geoff Harden

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This album was reviewed in Issue 1 of The Living Tradition magazine.