“You say grace before meals. All right. But I say grace before the concert and the opera, and grace before the play and pantomime, and grace before I open a book, and grace before sketching, painting, swimming, fencing, boxing, walking, playing, dancing and grace before I dip the pen in the ink.”

– G.K. Chesterton

We’re in the midst of a long stretch of touring, including the longest European tour we’ve ever done. It’s been a little daunting, thinking about being gone for a solid month. We’ll be spending Halloween in Northern Ireland, my birthday in the Netherlands, and Thanksgiving recuperating from the inevitable slings and arrows of a month on the road. But this November I will be giving thanks for things too numerous to count. I have had an amazing year in a several-years-long run of them – the opportunity to play music for more of you than ever before; some utterly inspiring and surprising collaborations with artists whose work I love, the recognition of my peers for music I’m proud of, the opportunity to travel to my heart’s content, and the creative (and yes, sometimes exhausting) life I get to live, because of you. I am not overstating the case when I say I am grateful every single day. Thank you for coming to the shows, buying the CDs, listening to the words, believing in the songs.
new website
new website

New website: At the time of this writing we’re days away from launching the brand new website. If you’re surfing the web and see something that looks like the photo above, stay awhile and have a look around! Please bear with us (and let us know) if you encounter any glitches – this has been a major overhaul. Many thanks to Laura217, who has taken on the huge task of archiving the old message board from the old website on her fan site, so all those discussions will live on in cyberspace. Thanks for all the hard work, Laura.

Bandaged Together: I’m thrilled to be included on the new Bandaged Together CD, a compilation for the UK charity Children In Need. I recorded the classic Disney song “When You Wish Upon A Star”, by Ned Washington and
Leigh Harline, with some amazing playing by Viktor Krauss on bass, Barry Walsh on glockenspiel, and Christine Bougie on lap steel. The CD can be ordered here beginning on 9 November. £6.50 from the sale of each CD will benefit The BBC Children in Need Appeal. Many thanks to Terry Wogan, Hellen Bach and Norman Macintosh for making it happen.

Northern Lights: “For those who won’t trade musical acumen for holiday spirit” says the LA Times. USA Today calls it “stark and lovely”. The folks at Just Plain Folks voted it the Holiday album of the year. If you’re more about “Bleak Midwinter” and less about “Jingle Bells”, this is probably the Christmas album for you. CDs and downloads can be had at the website.

The Cowboy Train video: video highlights from the Cowboy Train can now be seen here. Now aren’t you sorry you missed it?

Boo! a little Halloween haunting for you, in case you missed it the first time around:

Legendary (and badass) women of folk: After our show in San Diego with the wonderful Cheryl Wheeler, we knew once wasn’t enough. So we’ll be making another trip back to Colorado in December to do three shows with Cheryl – one at the Sunset Events Center in Fort Collins, and two back-to-back nights in Denver at the venerable Swallow Hill Music Association.
After that, we’ll be winding up the year with three dates with our dear friend Janis Ian on December 11-13. We’ll all be appearing at the Kent Stage in Kent, OH; The Ark in Ann Arbor, MI and the Wilmette Theater in Wilmette, IL, in that order. Shows with Janis are always a lot of fun – everyone knows she’s an incredible (and legendary) singer-songwriter, but she also happens to be a phenomenal guitar player. Lucky for us she loves to sit in with us!

Chat Time: Laura 217 has offered to host a chat on her fan site, and we’ve set a tentative date of Saturday, January 9. In order to include everyone from both sides of the Atlantic, we’ll time the online chat for early afternoon here in Nashville, early evening in the UK and Europe. More details as we get closer to the date – start saving up your questions!

Download Of The Month: This month’s download is “Mother”, recorded this past October live at Turner Hall in Mt. Olive, Illinois (final resting place of Mother Jones, the subject of the song, and perhaps the most badass woman of all-time). You can download it at beginning on November 1.

Upcoming Shows:
Oct 31, 2009 – Newry, NI (UK) @ Sean Hollywood Arts Centre w/ Cara Dillon
Nov 3, 2009 – Rathfriland, NI (UK) @ Bronte Church – Bronte Music Club – Buy Tickets
Nov 4, 2009 – Belfast, NI (UK) @ Errigle Inn – Real Music Club – Buy Tickets
Nov 5, 2009 – Enniskillen, NI (UK) @ Ardhowen Theatre w/ Cara Dillon – Buy Tickets
Nov 6, 2009 – Coleraine, NI (UK) @ Riverside Theatre w/ Cara Dillon – Buy Tickets
Nov 7, 2009 – Derry, NI (UK) @ Millennium Forum w/ Cara Dillon – Buy Tickets
Nov 8, 2009 – Buckingham, ML (UK) @ Old Town Hall – Buy Tickets
Nov 9, 2009 – Maidstone, LO (UK) @ The Exchange – Buy Tickets
Nov 10, 2009 – Stockton on Tees, NE (UK) @ The Arc – Buy Tickets
Nov 11, 2009 – Kendal, NW (UK) @ Bootleggers Music Bar – Buy Tickets
Nov 12, 2009 – Bury, NW (UK) @ The Met – Buy Tickets
Nov 13, 2009 – Bath, SW (UK) @ Chapel Arts Centre – Buy Tickets
Nov 14, 2009 – Lage Vuursche, (NL) @ In The Woods – Buy Tickets
Nov 15, 2009 – Ottersum, (NL) @ C.C. Roepaen – Buy Tickets
Nov 16, 2009 – Eindhoven, (NL) @ Meneer Frits – Buy Tickets
Nov 18, 2009 – Oentsjerk, (NL) @ Folk in de Walden – Buy Tickets
Nov 19, 2009 – The Hague, (NL) @ Transvaria – Buy Tickets
Nov 20, 2009 – Spijkerboor, (NL) @ Cafe’t Keerpunt – Buy Tickets
Nov 22, 2009 – London, LO (UK) @ Bush Hall – Buy Tickets

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