Your choice of notes and all the patterns you made up were absolutely fantastic. I couldn’t have chosen better notes myself.... What you played was incredibly artistic and sensitive, and really beautiful to tell you the truth. I’d pay money to buy that track if I heard it.
— Howard Levy, diatonic harmonica pianeer, multiple Grammy Award winner, founding member of Béla Fleck and the Flecktones
A fresh, new, folk talent just blew into town. And he’s still blowin’ great new harmonica at some of the hottest gigs in Philly. Ansel Barnum is the talented mouth harp man and he’s a great, crowd pleaser—from recording studios to Festival stages. Check him out.
— Gene Shay, "The Dean of American Folk DJs" Founder, Philadelphia Folk Fest DJ, WXPN & Folk Alley
Harmonica player Ansel Barnum enhanced all the songs of the all-star performers with big harp.
— John Moser, senior music critic at the Morning Call
Without even having met him, we called on Ansel for a last minute recording gig, and within no time he turned around a beautifully recorded, top notch performance. Exactly what we were looking for. Looking forward to working with him again!
— Will and Brooke Blair, composers (Blair Brothers Music)
Wow, Ansel, that’s amazing! I really, really love it. I think you nailed the vibe of the song perfectly, and the new solo is a lot more like — or even better than — what I was hoping for. I can’t imagine how it would be any better! Thank you!!
— Amy Kucharik, Boston composer, singer, ukulele
I’ve been going to musikfest for over 30 years and I’ve never heard anything as impressive as your harmonica playing.
— Mary-Ann Sarik
Ansel Barnum makes us all know that the best days of music are yet to come. At a young age, he is already on his way to becoming a true musical master. A joy to play with as well as to listen to. I can hardly wait to play with him again.
— David Amram, composer, conductor, multi-instrumentalist, and author
Ansel Barnum is now an undeniable force on the Philadelphia music scene. Barnum combines folk and blues harp techniques with original, even avant garde, melodic choices. His versatility and virtuosity put him among the top of some venerable harp players to hail from our city.
— Levi Landis, executive director of The Philadelphia Folksong Society
Ansel is a great harmonica player. He knows when to play and when not to play.
— David Bromberg, American multi-instrumentalist, singer, producer, arranger and engineer
Truly among the most talented and tasteful musicians I’ve ever met
— George Woods, guitarist, composer, producer, Berkley School of Music graduate
Can’t tell you enough how much we enjoyed what you and Chris pulled off yesterday afternoon. Everyone present will have that memory long after the wrapping paper has been discarded. A gift of heartfelt music is timeless.
— Jeff Adkins