Rocky Mountain Folks Festival Song School
On August 14th, the sky in Lyons, Colorado filled with electricity and nature showed off some of her powers. It reminded me of the way I look at songwriting, and prompted a new passage in my book on songwriting.
"I see songwriting as a kind of midwifery. Like children, songs show up knowing who they are. I can influence them, but the songs arrive with personalities of their own. So, if songs are coming from somewhere else, my work is to be a receiver. With lightning rod in hand, I hope to conduct electricity by collecting flashes of ideas and inspiration.
As I work, I ride the edge between what I know, my subconscious, and what hasn't happened yet. As I step into the emptiness of my unknowing and create something from nothing, I get the sense that I am co-creating. I do not know what the electricity flowing through me will manifest, or what my efforts at conducting will light up. Often, it is nothing at all!
I am not in charge of the flow. I cannot switch it on or off. All I can do is show up, and direct my focused effort into it, and believe in the process.
Sometimes I sit at my writing desk for hours before I can access the state of mind where I am not "writing," but listening. There is a deep and profound mystery at the core of song creation, a sacred riddle.
Each song makes requests of me, through my gut, or solar plexus.
It is the third chakra, the gut feeling, that helps me get rid of untruths. When I write untruths or stray from the path of authenticity, my gut feels it. It senses the falseness and whispers a message to work harder. My job as a songwriter is to rid the song of dishonesty. This is neither simple nor easy - the process is almost always one of discovery.
I work to see what I have not yet seen.
Every song is a new beginning, a new life entering the world."
- Mary Gauthier, Excerpt from "Saved By A Song"
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
HARDLY STRICTLY BLUEGRASS FESTIVAL
I'm honored to be a part of this year's Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Lineup! We hope to see you in San Francisco October 4th-6th. Find more details at www.hardlystrictlybluegrass.com.
UK & IRELAND TOUR
UK Americana Music Association's International Artist of the Year 2019
I am excited to return to the UK and Ireland this fall with Jaimee Harris and Michele Gazich. We will play seven dates, including the Fitzroy Church in Belfast, Whelan's in Dublin, London's Union Chapel, Pleasance Theatre in Edinburgh and more.
Find a full list of tour dates on my website at
September 5th: Nashville, TN
The Bluebird Cafe
September 6th: Nashville, TN
September 12th: Bay Shore, NY
YMCA Boulton Center for the Performing Arts
September 13th: Rosendale, NY
September 14th: Jersey City, NJ
Hudson West Folk Festival
September 15th: Freehold, NJ
Concerts In The Studio
September 21st: Columbus, OH
Ohio Lesbian Festival
September 26th: Boston, MA*
City Winery Boston
September 27th: Fall River, MA*
Narrows Center for the Arts
September 28th: Norfolk, CT*
Infinity Hall & Music Bistro
*with Gretchen Peters & Friends