This is a song I wrote about my great grandmother. She used to run a still up in the north woods of Idaho, in the Priest Lake area. I learned this bit of family history when I was a teenager and that image stuck with me and this is the song that it fermented.
Lots of time at home now and thinking about all those troubles we are trying to leave behind.
So, we entered the 2020 NPR tiny desk contest. Here is our entry video, wish us luck.
Glenn took the spark of an idea I had for a song and wrote “Handful of Stars”. It was inspired by a lovely handmade card given to me for Christmas a few years ago. He created a beautiful song that makes me happy every time I sing it. A song about the gift of children.
Gilead Road just came out with a CD. I mean, really. Not a pretend one. A real one. I feel like I’m a kid in my bedroom singing with my hairbrush/microphone and there’s a knock at the door and someone says, “What are you doing in here with your hairbrush? The record company is on the phone!” Ok, so it’s not exactly a record company. These days if you know your way around recording software (Glenn does) and you can tap your savings account for (actual) microphones and the cost of printing the CDs, then presto-zingo-bingo! You open the front door one morning and the UPS man has dropped off a box of CDs. With your very own picture on the front! My heart is pitter-pattering away with excitement and nervous joy.
Glenn writes these songs that slay me. The truth is, some of them grab me as soon as I hear them and then there are others that sneak up on me when I least expect it. “That’s a really gorgeous song,” I tell him.
“Oh yeah?” he says. “You didn’t like it when you first heard it.”
“Whaddya mean I didn’t like it? I liked it fine.”
“You just kinda went ‘Huh’ when I first played it for you.”
“Well, that was then. This is now. And now I like it, a LOT. Play it again.”
He writes about his grandpa growing old and mis-remembering who Glenn is when he visits. He writes about his great-great grandma and her moonshine still in the backwoods of Idaho. He writes about a mail boat exploding on the river in those same backwoods; a chatty superintendent who tells him he left the west coast because he was “too gay for the Castro”; and a line worker in a storm, missing his home in Tennessee. And the stories keep pouring out of the guitar and I get to join in and lend my voice in solos and harmonies.
Come hear the music. Come join us as we celebrate this collection of songs now available on the eponymously* named CD released by Gilead Road.
Gilead Road performs! 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, October 16, 2019 Best Video Film & Cultural Center 1842 Whitney Ave. Hamden, CT
This is a song Glenn wrote. Thanks to Julie for filming this at the Make Music Day in Old Lyme, CT. This song is based on my Grandma Grace’s husband Sam Beyers. Family legend has it that he died when his steam boat exploded. He was delivering the mail to the hunting and logging camps on the upper and lower Priest Lakes of Northern Idaho.
To my family who might be listening, I changed Grandma Grace’s name to Rebeca; Grace just didn’t sing quite right. 🙂
“All I Know” … a brand new song! Glenn wrote it while we were up in Maine staying at a cottage on Lake Androscoggin. We filmed it it on the porch.
We had such fun performing in Maine! We played at the Cary Memorial Library in Wayne and at the Coffee House at the Belgrade Lakes Union Church. We may do a mini tour of Down East Maine next summer, with definite return visits to the Wayne library and the Union Church Coffee House. So sweet to connect with the Maine music community.