December 2010 newsletter

December 2010

In the bleak midwinter
Frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron
Water like a stone

-Christina Rossetti

driving through Kansas, November 2010

What a Year

There are years, and there are Years; this has been a Year. We started out with a huge (for Nashville) blizzard, or as it was called here, The Situation 2010. The Situation cancelled my annual benefit for Planned Parenthood, this year with guests Marshall Chapman and Minton Sparks, but we braved the ice and met for Thai food that night, and ended up writing a song about Jerry Lee Lewis. Serendipity strikes once. There were a couple of great Wine, Women & Song shows stateside in February (Columbus, OH & Atlanta, GA), and a show with Rodney Crowell in March. Barry and I mentioned that we were getting married, and Rodney mentioned that he was an ordained minister and could do the job. Serendipity strikes twice.

In May, Nashville was hit by an epic 1000-year flood. The Situation was far more serious this time. Just as the city was picking itself up and surveying the damage (over $1.5 billion), we were flying over to the UK to begin the “Circus Girl: Without A Net” tour. With the aid of an old top hat and some very generous fans, we were able to raise over £800 for flood relief. In June we played a great show in Nashville with friend and collaborator Tom Russell. In attendance were Marshall Chapman, Nanci Griffith and Steve Young, among others. July took us back to the UK to play a couple festivals. Our sets at Cambridge Folk Festival were really well received and we had a blast playing for a lot of new folks.

at 3rd & Lindsley with (L to R)Thad Beckman, Nadine Russell, Nanci Griffith, Tom Russell, Steve Young

As most of you know, we took the autumn (mostly) off to get married. Rodney Crowell officiated, as promised, and we were serenaded by incredibly talented friends like Jeff Hanna, Matraca Berg, Suzy Bogguss, Mary Gauthier, Tom Russell, Bryan Adams, Tia Sillers, John Lester, Tania Elizabeth and more. After the wedding (and a little work on Tom’s upcoming album here in Nashville), we had a beautiful honeymoon in New Orleans, truly one of the Great Cities. I also had a blast singing with The Long Players, who perform an entire classic album at once – it was my good fortune to be invited to sing the title cut from John Lennon’s “Imagine” album. There’s a bit of video here.

And here we are at the end of a YEAR. A blizzard, a flood, a wedding, and a couple of trips across the big pond. Last week we headed west one last time, this time to see Leonard Cohen in Portland, Oregon, a sublime show that will be with me for a long, long time. In a year of superlatives it only seems right to be closing it out in the presence of one of the Greats.

Bluebird Cafe

Over the past couple of years I’ve been doing a semi-regular “in the round” show with buddies Janis Ian, Craig Carothers & Tony Arata. If you are in Nashville on December 17th, you can catch our last show of the year at the Bluebird Cafe at 9:30PM. Tickets usually sell out quickly, so hurry.

deep in December, the year has grown old…

Christmas album available now!

…and we have a fresh batch of “Northern Lights” CDs just in time for Christmas. Order now, and we’ll get it out to you in plenty of time to pour a glass of wine, sit in front of the tree and enjoy the season. Did I mention they make great stocking stuffers? Check it out here. From now through Christmas we are sending orders out the next business day after they are received, so you can receive them in time for gifting (or enjoying!)


Apple has provided me with an official Ping artist profile, and I’m posting a Ping song of the week there on most Mondays. It’s my firm belief that most musicians are frustrated DJs, and it’s been a lot of fun to spread the word about songs and artists I love. If you’re an iTunes user, you can follow me here.

Germany & Holland

Our spring European tour is coming together, and the Dutch and German dates have been posted! Check the tour page for details. Here’s the tour so far:

10 March – Cologne, Germany
12 March – Berlin, Germany
13 March – Hannover, Germany
14 March – Duisburg, Germany
15 March – Koblenz, Germany
16 March – Amsterdam, Netherlands
17 March – Den Haag, Netherlands
18 March – Bakkeveen, Netherlands
19 March – Lage Vuursche, Netherlands
20 March – Venlo, Netherlands
22 March – Kassel, Germany
23 March – Erfurt, Germany
24 March – Dresden, Germany
25 March – Hamburg, Germany

Wine, Women & Song

Matraca Berg, Suzy Bogguss and I now have a Wine, Women & Song Facebook page! If you’re on Facebook, we hope you’ll “like” us. You can find all the news about our upcoming UK tour and a few other exciting announcements coming soon.

Download of the Month

Merry Christmas from our house to yours

This month’s free download is a little early Christmas present from Barry and me, recorded at home one frosty November morning. Visit the download page to get December’s free download (and my grandma Adele’s fabulous gingerbread recipe!) May your days be merry and bright.

x Gretchen

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