About Hopeful Romantics


hopeful adj : having qualities which inspire hope.

romantic adj : marked by the imaginative or emotional appeal of what is heroic, adventurous, remote, mysterious, or idealized.

– Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 10th edition

Ed Stauff and Mary Ellen Wessels are Hopeful Romantics, a musical duo which has delighted audiences across the U.S., as well as Canada, England and Germany.

We specialize in uplifting songs in a variety of styles centered around a core of contemporary and traditional folk.


Mary Ellen

lead vocals
6-string guitar
appalachian dulcimer


6- & 12- string guitars
string & electric bass
clawhammer banjo
hammered dulcimer

Listen to our Virtual Demo CD!

Donna Hèbert

3:41 • 3.5MB
James Taylor

4:18 • 4.0MB
"A Toast to Unknown Heroes"
Leslie Fish

3:35 • 3.4MB

For samples of Ed's solo piano work, check out Champlain Summer.

What people are saying about Hopeful Romantics

  "Big voice, big heart - Mary Ellen Wessels is a pleasure to hear."
-- Fred Small
  "Mew as a singer is both passionate and intimate, her choice of songs eloquent: Ed's musicianship provides the perfect complement. This is a remarkably engaging and talented duo."   "Ed Stauff's performance achieves what most pianists only aspire to: lyrical, lilting, graceful, heartfelt yet elegant..."  

Many more quotes here!

A Few of our Favorite Songwriters

Lou & Peter Berryman
Gordon Bok
Mary Chapin Carpenter
Harry Chapin
Heather Dale
Cat Faber
Bob Franke
Cindy Kallet
Larry Kaplan
James Keelaghan
Talis Kimberley
Gwen Knighton
Christine Lavin
Gordon Lightfoot
Dougie MacLean
Eileen McGann
Tom Paxton
Sally Rogers
Stan Rogers
Fred Small
Judy Small
Bill Staines
James Taylor
Dar Williams
Kate Wolf

A Sampling of our Repertoire

Acts of Creation
All that is Gold
Banana Slug
Botany Bay
Bows of London
Building Fires
A Chat with Your Mother
Christmas in the Trenches
Cinderella’s Song
The Circle Game
City of New Orleans
Crazy Man Michael
Crossing the Water
The Dark Is Rising
Deep in the Darkest Night
Digger's Song
Don Quixote
The Faith of Man
Farewell to Tarwathie
Farewell to the Gold
The Field Behind the Plow
The Final Trawl
Fires of Calais
Fisherman's Boy
A Folksinger Earns Every Dime
Follow That Road
Forty-Five Years
From the Lambing to the Wool
Garden Song
Gentle Arms of Eden
Give My Children Wings
Give Yourself To Love
God Lives on Terra
A Healing in this Night
Hearts and Hands
I Would I Were
The Idiot
Isle au Haut Lullabye
Jack Ashton
Jamaica Farewell
Journey’s Done
Julian of Norwich
Knock on the Door
Lord Franklin
Love Has a Life of its Own
Lovely Agnes
Mary Ellen Carter
May The Light of Love
My Husband Has No Courage
Night Shuttle
No Man's Land
Old Love
Pass the Pepper
A Place in the World
Railway Tune
Ready for the Storm
The Return
Right Said Fred
The Roman Centurion's Song
Roseville Fair
Scarborough Fair
Secondhand Songs
She Is Always There
Solar Flare
Somewhere Ahead
Song for Gail
Stars in their Eyes
Swimming to the Other Side
Thanksgiving Eve
Their Way
This Shirt
A Toast for Unknown Heroes
Twa Magicians
Two Pteradactyls
When Fall Comes to New England
When Giants Walked
When I Was a Boy
When I Was a Fair Maid
Who Sings for the Engineer?
Why Walk When You Can Fly
Wisdom Guide Me
Witch of the West-mere-lands
The Word of God
Your Daughters and Your Sons

Contact Info

  Ed Stauff
Mary Ellen Wessels
7 Greenwood Drive
Nashua, NH
(802) 598-8222
(603) 864-8133