Living Up to a Dream
Rick is a folksinger/songwriter from Franklin, WI who performs a blend of traditional folk ballads and tunes along with his own original songs and favorites by others including Bill Staines, John Denver, Joel Mabus and Stan Rogers. An accomplished autoharp player, he is the 2009 Mountain Laurel Autoharp Champion, widely considered to be the world's premier autoharp competition. His new CD entitled "Living Up to a Dream" tells of tales of love, humor and hope from the oceans & Great Lakes to the High Plains. Here's what the Autoharp Quarterly had to say: 'The shimmering sounds of Rick Fitzgerald's autoharp are new to me, as are the excellent original songs he's introduced on this, his first album. With Neal Walters on the mandolin and Coleen Walters on the bass, Rick uses his Orthey autoharp and a Guild-D-50 guitar to round out a very professional and impressive album.' 'Rick's adventures aboard a recreated version of a 19th century three-masted Great Lakes schooner as one of it's crew, led motivation to write the original songs presented here. His impeccable guitar prowess is demonstrated throughout the album, as is his very likeable singing voice. My only disappointment is the shortage of autoharp on the album. Even though only five cuts include autoharp, they are well worth attention. My favorite was one of his originals, entitled Starlight on Keweenaw Bay. Very well written, sung and performed. The autoharp is exceptional, the words very meaningful. I also enjoyed Sarah Hogan. On Red Haired Boy I would like to have heard a bit cleaner melody towards the end, but the song, nonetheless is pleasant. Some may not agree with me, but Rick adding guitar throughout the album seems to have made the autoharp more refreshing each time it was introduced.' 'His style of singing (and) playing of instruments reminds me of the likes of John McCutcheon, Bryan Bowers, Gillian Welch and Harvey Reid. I think that's the direction he's headed if he keeps up this quality of music. Would I buy Rick's album? You bet!' Reviewed by Bill Bryant,The Autoharp Quarterly, June 2009.