Ragged and Real

It’s hard to believe June is upon us!  We’ve been busy getting ready to launch the new record and playing all kinds of shows that we’ve neglected to update our blog.  We almost didn’t have one for the lovely month of May!  Since we last saw you here, we’ve finished up the CD, played a number of shows up and down the eastern seaboard and we’re finally ready to release Silver Lining into the world tomorrow.

There is so much to reflect on from this past month and a half:  We drove 1,000 miles in one day just so we could get to see the Matt Flinner Trio perform near home.  We couldn’t pass it up and we’re die-hard fans.  We mastered our record in Baltimore the following weekend.  Nick Sjostrom poured over every soundbyte and moved from digital to tape and then back to digital all in one weekend to perfect the new record.  Jeff and Sue traveled over a thousand miles to help us complete everything and then tour with us for a few shows in the northeast.  We finally met another hero, Bruce Molsky, in RI.  Portland, ME and our dear friends Landace and Jed played host to us for several days where we stuffed ourselves with as much delicious food as we could afford.  The new record came in the mail and we packaged up all the preorders and sent them off!  Our car was broken into and robbed on a Saturday in Boston.  On Sunday, a lovely lady called to let us know our stuff had been dropped off in her yard (sans microphone but everything else in tact).  Another beautiful time in our favorite little northern town, Saranac Lake.  Folk Alley previewed our record for a week- woot!  We played 2 lovely, lovely CD Release shows in VA at Mockingbird and The Southern! Barry came on a weekend tour through DC and MD….. you get the picture, we’ve been busy and happy.

Matt Flinner Trio in Palmyra, VA.

Homemade cherry pie from Mama Parrish.

Caleb listening to the final masters.

Nick Sjostrom working his magic in the studio.

Bruce Molsky at Lilypads in RI.

Putting together preorders for the big mailing!

Playing at the Corner Store in DC with Barry.  Photo by Jonathan Harmon.

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Soul Journey

Oklahoma Skies.

Hotel Conditioner in Dallas, TX.

Little piece of home.  Huss and Dalton instruments at Fiddler’s Green in Austin, TX.

Just north of Santa Fe, NM.

Ken (our gracious host) and Kagey in Dixon, NM.

San Francisco Peaks heading toward Flagstaff, AZ.

Snow Storm leaving Prescott, AZ.

Off the plateau where the snow ends and desert begins.  AZ.

Pete Sibley.  After dinner/sunset stroll in Monterey, CA.

Tasty produce from Full Belly Farm and Skyelark Ranch in the Capay Valley, CA.  Carrots held by Miss Melody Walker in Richmond, CA.

Fresh Rosemary and Heather given to us by a concert attendee in Olympia, WA.

Snuggle time with Laura Brown and Brewer in Boise, ID.

Mt. Sopris.  Carbondale, CO.

Leaving Carbondale, CO.

Silver Lining

Silver Lining Album Cover. Photo by Jack Looney.  Design by Sue Bibeau.

Sweet as Honey:

1.  Pre Orders have begun for our new album, Silver Lining.  Visit our Website for details and HUGE thanks to Doc Lawson for maintaining the site.

2.  Beehive Productions– Jeff and Sue, you are amazing and talented.  This record wouldn’t even be nearing its goals without you both.  You’re sweeter than honey!  Thanks for the write-up on your blog.

3.  A return visit to Catawba with Barry, Caleb, Jeff and Sue!

4.  Nice show at Bottling Works in Romney, WV.  Also pretty sweet to drive home at 2am and beat the snow storm.

5.  Our amazing accountant, Tucker!

6.  Beautiful night in Scottsville to help celebrate the opening of Balance.

7.  2 lovely house concerts in Kansas and Oklahoma to kick-off the Spring Tour.

8.  The Hembrees, their beautiful house and open hearts.

9.  Early Spring!

10.  So many new records coming out this year!

Catawba by day.

Laura modeling the new T-Shirts for the Pre Order campaign.  Designed and printed by Sue Bibeau.

Recording in Catawba.

Sundown in Catawba.  Shot with 35mm B&W film.

More 35mm.

Winter Harvest

  New Stickers!  Available at all shows.

Sweet as Honey:

1.  First Florida Tour!

2.  European St. Cafe, Garage Mahal and Our Kind of Folk House Concerts- great hosts.

3.  Visiting 2 awesome radio stations in Florida- WMNF and WSLR.

4.  Beautiful Cedar Key.

5.  Playing a set before Mary Gauthier and Tania Elizabeth at the 30A Songwriters Festival.  Great crowd too!

6.  Spending more time in Saranac Lake, NY- we love you Jeff and Sue!

7.  New Stickers designed by Sue Bibeau of Beehive Productions.

8.  Deena’s House Concert and all our lovely Baltimore fans- you guys rock!

9.  Visit with Caleb to hang, work up songs, see “The Artist” and eat yummy food.

10.  Photo Sesh with Jack Looney for the record!

11.  Excellent VA mini-tour with Red June to some of our favorite spots: Kirk Avenue Music Hall & Ashland Coffee and Tea.  Special shout out to Doc Lawson for rockin’ on the bass in Eb for a new tune.

12.  First round of pre-orders for Silver Lining, our 3rd record, a success- thanks to everyone who ordered this past weekend.  Online pre-orders will begin at the end of this month.  Stay tuned.

13.  Winter Harvest– the new Matt Flinner Trio record… so good.

 Sneak peak at the Blenheim Vineyard photo session with Jack Looney.  More to come.

 Red June and Honey Dewdrops posters!  Photo by Natalya Weinstein.

 Red June and HDDs after Ashland Coffee & Tea gig.  This act is hittin’ the road together!

Catawba


Catawba, Virginia

In late December we began recording our third record in Catawba, Virginia. We set up shop on an old farm that perches on the top of a hillside and looks east towards Roanoke. It was the Dewdrops plus six, with everyone helping tune guitars, craft songs, cook savory meals, apply pats to backs, keep the creativity flowing, make hot tea, and uncork wine.

Caleb, Barry, Jeff, Kagey, Laura, Ashleigh

Togetherness:  There is nothing so valuable as good friends and we wanted our good friends to be a big part of the process of this recording session. Barry Lawson leant his hands and ears on a number of tunes by playing bass, mandolin, and octave mandolin. Caleb Stine contributed his expertise in song development helping to finish and arrange songs. Jeff Oehler, of Beehive Productions, engineered the session and worked his magic, setting up the mics in just the right place and getting the voices, instruments, and room to sound perfect. Sue Bibeau, also of Beehive Productions, inspired and encouraged us and developed the visual ideas that will be on the cd packaging. Jack Looney took gorgeous film footage and photographs. Ashleigh Shepherd took on the role of spiritual adviser, massaged sore shoulders, cooked delicious food, and made everyone feel really, really happy.

Peluso Microphones sponsored our session and provided their handcrafted microphones. We can’t speak highly enough about these mics, they are simply amazing. Made in Willis, Virginia, check them out for yourself here.

It was an amazing and productive 10 day session in one of our favorite places in Virginia. We can’t wait to share these new songs with everyone in the near future. Stay tuned for more info on a release date. In the meantime enjoy these pictures courtesy of Jack Looney!

Long Gone 2011

Catawba, VIrginia photo: Jack Looney

2011 has come and gone, time to gear up for 2012! We ended the year with a recording session in Catawba, VA and we’re just about to hit the road to Florida for some shows. We wanted to check in and let you know what we’ve been up to since the last post.

On November 12th we had another great show in Baltimore at Caleb Stine’s Round the Mountain.  The killer line up included Caleb, Hugh Campbell, Anna Roberts-Gevalt & Elizabeth Laprelle, and Leah Weiss & Gary Wright. Lots of foot-stomping, dancing, and hooting and hollering went on that night in The World’s Greatest City.

We returned to the Bena Country Store (our favorite country store!) on November 19th and had a great night w/ all the Bena-nites and our pal Barry Lawson joining us on bass and mandolin. The BCS is an old country store that has been restored to its original appearance with beautiful old wood floors and ceilings. It’s a great place to see and hear live music!!

That brings us to Thanksgiving which is just about our favorite holiday and we celebrated early with some good buddies of ours Melody Walker and Jacob Groopman at the Twisted Branch Tea Bazaar in C’ville on November 22nd. Twas a fun evening indeed, always great to see our good old friends!

Tea Bazaar with Jacob!  Photo by JJ Eisfelder.

The Cook Shack in Union Grove, NC photo: Bill Guerrant

We finished up our travels in 2011 with one more trip to North Carolina and returned to the Cook Shack which features amazing music in Union Grove.  Big thanks to our hosts Tom and Gail Watts and Pal and Myles Ireland!   Next, we headed to Asheville for a little downtime with our friends John and Natalya of Red June and also had the rare opportunity to see the Steel Wheels at the Grey Eagle.  A much needed few days of catching up with friends and churning the creative spirit led us to our final show of the year in Southport to play for Cape Fear Concerts. We couldn’t have asked for two better shows to end the year with!

2011 was a great year for us!  150+ shows and almost 50,000 miles criss-crossing the country has fueled our wandering souls for more in 2012.  Thanks to everyone for making year 3 the best yet.  We will see you all again in 2012!

There Are Places I Remember.

Time has flown by since we’ve been back home!  We are enjoying a little time to ourselves while taking in the last days of the fall foliage here in Charlottesville and finishing up songs for the next album!  We made an announcement a few weeks back in our newsletter that we will be recording our 3rd record in December on a farm outside of Blacksburg, VA with new friends Jeff Oehler and Sue Bibeau of Beehive Productions.  We are very excited for this next endeavor and will continue to write updates here and on our facebook page.  How serendipitous that their company title has a relationship with the term “honey!”

Rather than recount our last 2 weeks with stories, we thought we’d share some of our favorite music we’ve been into lately as well as a couple of restaurants and their dishes we scarfed.  We have LOVED the recommendations for local cuisine in the various towns we’ve visited!

Sweet as Honey to Our Ears:

1.  The Goat Rodeo Sessions– w/Yo-yo Ma, Edgar Meyer, Chris Thile, Stuart Duncan & Aoife O’Donovan

2.  Cahalen Morrison & Eli WestThe Holy Coming of the Storm

3.  Bela Fleck- The Bluegrass Sessions: Tales From The Acoustic Planet, Vol. 2 

4.  Wilco- The Whole Love

5.  The Kruger Brothers- Between the Notes

Sweet as Honey to Eat:

1.   The Front Room in Portland, ME- we had the most fantastic seafood here.  Oysters, scallops and haddock, oh my!

2.  Hot Suppa! in Portland, ME– OK, we have 2 Portland restaurants on this list, but they had the most delicious breakfast.

3.  Dough in Brooklyn, NY–  Right across from our friend Rachel’s apt were the best doughnuts we’ve ever had.  The hibiscus and almond con leche were among the favs.

4.  Church Brew Works in Pittsburgh, PA- Wow, delicious beer and food inside a HUGE church.

5.  Point Brugge Cafe in Pittsburgh, PA-  Another Pittsburgh restaurant and possibly one of the best we’ve been to.  We shared mussels in a red curry sauce, a Mediterranean platter of hummus and tapanade and finally, decadent mac and cheese… a meal that lasted us for the rest of the day!

Sweet as Honey to be Home:

1.  75 degree days.

2.  Hiking along our favorite trails.

3.  Most excellent meal at Beer Run for belated anniversary.

4.  Playing tunes in Richmond with Barry and Dave.

5.  Sibleys around town for a few days!

6.  Visiting with Kimberly and Mark Dalton and Betsy Baten!

7.  Mockingbird show and so many familiar faces.  We are very lucky to have amazing fans, friends and family.

8.  Brian Dickel and Eric & Peggy Brubaker (of The Steel Wheels) stop in to Mockingbird.  We love when musician friends turn out to support us!

9.  Wonderful tour of Monticello with the Sibleys where we were taken to the upstairs dome and performed “Bright Morning Stars.”  Oh the beautiful acoustics!  Video coming soon.

10.  Red June begins their campaign to record their 2nd record.  We LOVE their music and made our first contribution to Kickstarter for their campaign.  Won’t you help them too?

A night of duets at Mockingbird Roots Music Hall.