Happy January. This is Linford taking a moment to send a few quick words your
way. I hope your year has been a good one so far. Karin and I have spent
quite a few days in Barnesville, Ohio, where she grew up, packing up her
mother's belongings, getting the house ready to sell. Sometimes it would
snow, and then Willow and I would take a break and walk through the woods
around the lake.
Many of you continue to ask how Karin's mother is doing. Barbara Bergquist
lives in Cincinnati now and is still receiving therapy. Initially, the
doctors didn't think she would survive her stroke, so as Karin says, we make
the best now of these hard won days. Barbara is now able to stand for a few
minutes at a time and is able to communicate fairly well using short
sentences and phrases. The brain is a mysterious place that doctors know
relatively little about. We've learned alot about health care culture and
continue to take it a moment at a time. Thanks again on behalf of Karin and
Barbara for your thoughts, concerns, prayers and notes of encouragement.
Do we know how cats purr? Seems to me that's a mystery as well, come to think
of it.
Moving on to Over the Rhine news, we were moved and humbled by a
recently-completed two CD set of cover versions of our songs that fans of the
band recorded and collected on a compilation called, What It Takes To Please
You. Our jaws dropped open collectively on various occasions, and we smiled
alot and even wiped away a few tears. (What more can you ask for in a
What It Takes To Please You is an all-over-the-map collection that hangs
together surprisingly well. Drew Vogel and Bruce Lachey coordinated the
project and brought it to completion with very few laws broken along the
way--a commendable achievement. (Obviously Bruce isn't yet tuned into the
legal nuances of a derivative work, but the liberties he took with Karin's
lyrics have as of yet remained undiscovered by GMMI Music International and
Sony Tunes, the publishers of the song. And hey, he was baring his soul, so
we ain't sayin' nothin'. And our former label mates on IRS, Ozric Tentacles,
would undoubtedly raise an eyebrow or two if they discovered their music
accompanying a computer-generated version of Jack's Valentine, but frankly,
they're probably way too stoned to care.)
Anyway, we're very grateful to those of you that took the time to let us see
our songs in a different light. It certainly provided us with some enjoyable
and stimulating listening as we drove back and forth across Ohio. We felt
loved. And Drew and I were just talking yesterday: it means a lot that such a
wide variety of people--professional musicians, people who had never recorded
before, garage bands, or a few friends with a microphone set up on a church
balcony--all wanted to be involved. Our hats are off to all of you.
To those of you who would like to order a copy, you can go to Drew's website:
DrewVogel.com. All the proceeds go to Cincinnati Shares, a charity based in
Cincinnati that does a lot of good for many diverse folks in our community.
Well done.
In other news, Jack Henderson, who has been playing guitar with us now for
over five years, has put out a fine new solo album called Cheap Tattoo. You
can check out the monthly special at overtherhine.com if you'd like a copy,
or go directly to Jack's website: bulldogfarmmusic.com. Jack has been doing
some producing with other songwriters (with exceptional results). You can
also contact Jack at his website if you're interested in recording at his
Earlier this year, I met with the folks at Larkspur who will be printing the
limited edition of my first book, Unsung, and I was strangely moved as I
drove off Sawdridge Road just South of Monterey, Kentucky, and onto the lane
and across the creek that runs through the 60 acre farm where the presses are
located. This will be a small book printed a page at a time with every letter
of every word set by hand. They take their time down there! And I don't
believe I've mentioned this, but Jay Bolotin, a favorite artist of ours, is
contributing two woodcuts to the project which will be printed directly into
the book from the woodblocks. This makes me, for one, very happy when I think
about it. Again, it will be a simple, handmade affair, and we're not sure
when it will be done. Everytime we talk, Gray Zeitz reminds me, We don't work
with deadlines.
We'll keep you posted, and get them signed, numbered and mailed out as soon
as we receive them. I'm guessing we're still talking about (at least) a few
months down the road before we see anything. Larkspur's involvement, although
a coup, was not part of the initial plan for the book. If you'd like to get
your money back because of the waiting involved, please just drop us a note,
and we'll be happy to send you a refund. Thanks for your patience.
Eric pulled several MP3's out of the archive this month. Free downloads
abound at overtherhine.com. Help yourself.
And finally, the shape of our year is beginning to emerge. We'll be doing
some touring this Spring on the East Coast, the West Coast and a few points
in between. Scattered festivals are planned for this summer, including
another trip to Europe in August. (You can see some of the confirmed tour
dates already at overtherhine.com.) We'll be starting work on some new
recordings a few months from now. We'll press *Record* and find out what the
music wants to sound like.
This weekend, we're starting off the New Year right at Canal Street Tavern in
Dayton, Ohio, one of our favorite listening rooms. Jack and Karin and I will
play a couple of living room concerts and throw the door open to see what
walks in. Join us Friday or Saturday if you can. We often start off the year
at Canal Street--these will be the first shows of 2002. We'll look for you...
(More info available at overtherhine.com.)
By the way, we'd like to find two people who would be willing to look after
our CD table each night in Dayton this wknd. Each volunteer would receive two
tickets and a free cd from our catalog. Please e-mail Blair Woods if you'd
like to help out:
Hope to see you soon.
Linford Detweiler for Over the Rhine