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Mary McGuinness's album Shadowcatcher

Mary McGuinness recently released the album Shadowcatcher. I had the pleasure of talking with Mary about the songs and process of this release recently. The album consists of 10 songs opening with Dreamy Feeling which was the final released single. Each song on this album is a snapshot of Mary McGuinness's life, "the stories I wanted to get out, and the stories I wanted to tell". Bounded Beauty is a song Mary wrote about her great-grandmother, and Springtime Thunder is a song Mary wrote for her dad while he was going through cancer, diving into her Celtic heritage in his honor. The title track ties them all together.

Mary McGuinness said she originally wrote 15 or 16 songs for this record and to narrow it down she solicited the help of her producer. Mary expressed that the songs seemed to reveal themselves to them knitting themselves together into a flow. The songs she didn’t select for this collection were not "throw-away songs but maybe will fit better on a different project." Each song on Shadowcatcher was meticulously placed in the layout after Mary played them in 30 or so different song lineups before choosing this particular order. Mary aimed for a continuous progressive flow through these 10 cuts and was specific with her choices to make a masterpiece. Those details make this record special and authentic to getting to know Mary McGuiness and her multicultural heritage. Shadowcatcher is a reflection of Mary McGuinness and what she envisions. The bulk of the album was written in Nashville which she now calls home.

Songwriter and producer Joe Pisapia produced Shadowcatcher but there is more to that story. When Mary McGuinness and Joe Pisapia had their initial meeting, Mary requested Pisapia to assist her on a song she was stuck on and trying to finish, she played Joe a couple of songs, and ... they completed Spellbreaker, and then another and those couple of songs turned into a full album. Mary wrote with a talented array of songwriters to create this album. Mary said they had so much fun and she'd never laughed so much during a project that she is certain "the laughter was absorbed into the music." Recording the tracks for Shadowcatcher took about 5 days and then there were a few rerecorded parts, mixing the tracks, adding background vocals, harmonies, string instruments, and the harmonica to complete the songs.

The songs selected for music videos were Once in a Blue Moon and Double Vision following their single releases. The compilation of this record was a reminder to Mary on when to pause and when to revisit those parts of projects that caused the most struggle but in the end, it is a one-of-a-kind assortment of authenticity and musical talent.

Congratulations Mary McGuinness on this release. I appreciate your time and openness in talking about yourself, In A Country Minute.


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