Montague Book Mill + Dream Away Lodge = certain return

i was already having a marvellous time, but playing these places back-to-back decided it for me–i want to add New England to my yearly tour route just like Old England.

Montague drew a healthy crowd and people hung around for a long while after the show with crushes on each other, the Spring, the sound of the waterfall, the scent of moldering, important books.

Isabel and i stayed at the Institute for Musical Arts in Goshen, MA around our shows in Montague and Becket. i was charmed and wow’ed by our hostesses June Millington (of Fanny fame) and Ann Hackler as they prepared for summer camp sessions that begin at IMA this week. we slept in the bunkhouse and enthused over the amazing barn / recording studio / performance space, imagining how life-changing it must be for young women to have musical / spiritual mentors like June & Ann. IMA’s rock camp is for girls ages 9-early 20s–check them out !

Dream Away Lodge feels made for a multiple-honeymoon summer with many lovers. some young farmer-folk made up most of our audience there; they brought us vegetables and invited us to stop for lunch as we left town, passing by their homestead en route to Hudson, NY, heading west on Route 9. it rained so hard that we had to keep driving but felt nourished by the idea and by our meeting.

we hope we’ll see all o’ y’all + many others on our next pass through New England. thank you SO MUCH to everyone who came out for the shows, supporting this four-door troubadour and her trusty cellist sidekick. i’m writing this last journal entry from home, surrounded by an explosion of travel-damp-&-dusty clothes, receipts, cds & vinyl from musicians met along the way, notes-to-self, seashells, set-lists, foodstuffs, souvenirs. washed ashore with experience and other booty, i am one sated pirate.

faerie piss. Diane Cluck

a warning from the foyer of Dream Away Lodge. photo by Diane.

Biddeford, ME

i thoroughly enjoyed meeting Greg (of O’Death) and playing in the homey, musician-friendly venue he runs in Biddeford, The Oak + The Ax. my first time playing anywhere close to Portland, ME. from the stage the listening felt intensely intent (i.e. super-quiet); warmth shook loose once the songs were over.

the end of time. Diane Cluck

the end of time in Biddeford, ME. photo by Diane.

Peterborough, NH

we played before Mark Kozelek at The Thing In the Spring Festival. i wasn’t familiar with his work, but seated in the audience my mind opened like a child’s in the care of a master. i hadn’t heard storytelling like this in awhile–deeply poetic, casual, personal. i found his excellent craftsmanship both comforting and inspiring.  ( his recent album “Perils From the Sea” made for great road listening. )

Isabel, Mark, Diane

Isabel, Mark, Diane in Peterborough, NH.

i felt a lot of care went into curating the weekend. most of the music was new to me, eclectic, from local and afar, enjoyed upon first listen. other favorites from the hours i spent there were Pine Grove and Inanna’s Descent.  also the kissing booth !

kissing booth

sign on the kissing booth in the stairwell.

Providence, RI

dillapidating grandeur. outsized entryways designed for people + top hats and wide, trailing bustles, steamer trunks and attendants. with none of these, i feel a slip of a ghost in the doorway.

old haus. Diane Cluck

hulk magestique. 400ish block of Broadway. sundown. photo by Diane.

we played in the Columbus Theatre tonight, a dreamy place for a traveling musician. the theater dates from the mid 1920s, feels older as it was inspired by an Italian opera house from the 1880s. the balcony’s recently been turned into its own small theater and plays host to live music since last fall. caring musician folk tend to the place; layers of new vibrancy wash over and through renovations and decay. the upstairs is home to The Low Anthem’s recording studio; downstairs The Pirates of Penzance rehearsed pirates on the mainstage.

in a last-moment tryst we added Josephine Foster to the bill, accompanied by excellent guitarist Victor Herrera + sensitive player Otto Hauser on drums. Josephine is one of my favorite voices out there, tone and presence and songwriting. between them and Omnivore who played the first set, i might’ve been content to sit the night out, nearly whiled away by listening. Glenna of Omnivore works magic with telephone microphones.  she & her merry coven offered up amazing pre- & post-show vittles, too; i can’t imagine being more lovingly well-fed.

me over tea by Willa. DC

me over tea, drawn by Willa.