Mid-June, I'm returning to the studio to begin recording my first full-length album in 12 years… and the first in my 20-year career to feature my original songs.
I’ve been a professional folksinger since 1997. I got my start in a duo with songwriter Dave Carter, and went solo (with the help of friends) after his death in 2002. I've performed all over the world, toured with Joan Baez, recorded with Mary Chapin Carpenter, headlined festivals, and seen my name on a few marquees. For most of that time, I haven't been known as a songwriter, but as a legacy keeper. For years, I've sung Dave's songs almost exclusively, and made it my mission to get people to sing along.
But that began to shift in 2014, when I was invited to participate in the RealWomenRealSongs weekly song challenge. I'd been writing bits of songs since college but hadn't finished any to my satisfaction. Deadline pressure and a supportive community worked their magic on me, and I ended up with a batch of new songs that I felt proud of.
It felt different to sing my own songs on stage. They were raw and deeply personal, written during a time of great stress and searching and sorrow. Singing them made my voice crack and my fingers tremble for the first time in years. But it also set me free. I felt alive, full-color, like I’d shed a skin. I was, at last, myself, singing on behalf of myself. My audiences rejoiced, having waited years for something from my own pen, and connected with the songs deeply, finding them relatable, moving, and true. It wasn't long before they asked me to make an album ... so here I am, ready to do this, and asking for your help.
This eleventh recording will be my most intimate, personal offering to date. Having your support would mean the world to me both personally and professionally. By way of this Kickstarter campaign, I’m making the invitation: help me raise the funds to record and release this first batch of songs so they can do their work in the world, whatever that may be. And then I'll get busy writing more...
I'm looking forward to sharing the album-making adventure with my backers and am deeply grateful for any and all contributions toward the goal. And remember: spreading the word about this project is as helpful as investing in it. Together, we can make this album happen; in fact, together is the only way it’ll happen.
To my longtime fans, thank you for walking this road with me, and thank you for asking for these songs. I'm emboldened by your years of love and support and determined to continue growing and evolving as an artist, in service of the greater good and whatever beauty I can bring to this world.
Blessings on us all. xo tg
The album will include songs about family, loss, hope, and relationships written for the RealWomenRealSongs project. Additionally, there could be newer original material and a few beloved covers. As is standard practice, we'll go into the studio with more songs than we need, and the ten mixes that convey the most compelling, true story will become the album. Up for consideration:
Good Life; Were You Ever Here; 49er; Mercy; Throwaway; Hole; The Verdant Mile; Daffodil Days; The Mark; Free; Stumpy's Last Dance (F. Tedesso); Cloudbusting (K. Bush); Like the Sun
- Lorne Entress - drums and percussion
- Jim Henry - acoustic and electric guitars, mandolin, Dobro, harmonies
- Paul Kochanski - electric and upright bass
- Me - acoustic guitar, violin, viola, vocals, studio toys
- Plus special guests.
We will track and mix at Signature Sounds in Pomfret, Conn., with additional recording as needed at Rubytone Studios in Shutesbury, Mass. and my home studio in Greenfield, Mass. Mark Thayer is our engineer.
- June 15 - July 15 - basics and overdubs
- July 16 - August 16 - mixing / mastering / art & graphics
- Late August - duplication, deliver digital album
- September - CD release!
I am funding this project entirely on my own, with your help. Here’s how the numbers fall:
- $25,000 covers production, musician fees, engineering, mixing, mastering, licensing, and original cover art.
- With $35,000, I can manufacture the CD, create a tour poster, and hire a radio and press team.
- With $40,000, I can bring additional musicians on tour.
- With $55,000 or more, I can invest in a small RV, which makes it possible to bring my beloved but ailing Miss Kitty with me (long story).
- Note that Kickstarter charges 5% and Amazon charges another 3-5% beyond that for pledge processing. I have figured these fees into the budget.
Special thanks to these beautiful people for their feedback as I built this campaign: Andrew Calhoun, Sonny Chehl, Ron Greitzer, Jim Henry, Judy Hensley, Bill King, Kristin McCue, Walter & Dottie O’Kon, Hannah S. Wiseheart.
By this merit, may all beings be free of suffering. May all beings be happy, safe, and well.
Risks and challenges
The biggest risk is this: If I do not meet my Kickstarter goal, the project will not be funded. But I did the math: if I pre-sell two of everything, and engage one backer at the Executive Producer level, we'll be good to go. :)
Even though this is my first songwriter album, I’m an experienced recording artist and producer. Mark Thayer and I set the schedule and chose the band together, and I see no personnel or scheduling issues, barring illness or calamity.
I have not yet commissioned an artist for the cover because I don't have a title for the album yet. Commissioned cover art can take some time and revisions. Workarounds would be to license an artist's existing work, or create the cover art myself. Either way, I am firm on a September delivery.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)