Gretchen Peters Returns to Seaside Oct 9
October 7, 2013 by SoWal Staff
Kicking off The Seaside Repertory Theatre's Fall Concert Series is Grammy-nominated, Nashville singer-songwriter Gretchen Peters. The concert is Oct. 9 at 7:30 p.m. in the Seaside Meeting Hall Theatre.
Gretchen Peters won the Country Music Association's 'Song of the Year' for Independence Day, recorded by Martina McBride. Following the recognition, she began writing for a string of great vocalists - Pam Tillis, Trisha Yearwood, Patty Loveless, Neil Diamond, George Straight, and Etta James, among others. Peters also signed her own record deal, yielding her 1996 debut album, The Secret of Life. The title track was cut by Faith Hill in 1999, and hit number five on the country charts.
“I haven’t had enough time at Seaside,” says Peters of her upcoming show with husband Barry Walsh. “If we book a gig there, at least we know we’ll get down there. Thank goodness for the 30A Songwriters Festival, because we get to spend a whole week there in January.” She attributes her time away to her busy touring schedule in support of the great 2012 album Hello Cruel World, “but that’s a good problem.”
She did take part of the summer off to write and collaborate with another familiar name to 30A Songwriters Festival attendees - Mary Gauthier. One of those songs, How You Learn to Live Alone, will be featured on the season premiere of ABC-TV’s Nashville.
“I’ve watched a few episodes on my iPad,” says Peters. “I don’t have the whole storyline down, but I’ve seen enough to know.” She commends the show’s new music supervisor Buddy Miller (who replaced T-Bone Burnett) for “making an effort to make the music great. I feel lucky that he’s looking at people like me and Mary who are outside the mainstream circle.”
Some of the Peters-Gauthier compositions may surface on Gauthier’s upcoming record, too. Peters has also written songs with Ben Glover, who opened for her and Walsh twice in the UK.
“I’m sort of in the process of writing - blocking out some time to write,” she says. “I might sing a new song here or there. It’s always scary to do a new song, but it’s a good way to test the waters, out in a room full of people. It makes you able to see the weak spots. I played a new song in the last couple weeks and went back to the drawing board to rework it. It’s not so much how the audience reacts, but how you yourself are hearing the song and feeling how it flows.”
When Peters and Walsh played the Seaside REP Theatre last May, she performed the Hello Cruel World album front to back. The current setlist is different, with lots of Peters’ older songs reworked. “I may or may not do some new songs.”
Peters’ most recent release is the DVD/CD/book package Woman on the Wheel, which she calls “a huge undertaking.” Artist Gina Binkley designed it and did “a beautiful job. It was a labor of love for her.” The DVD contains footage from festivals Peters played over the past year, and the book includes photos and memorabilia sent to her by fans—“it was really collaborative in that sense. I wanted to do something for the diehard fans.”
After the Seaside performance, Peters and Walsh will swing through Birmingham before embarking on a tour of Ireland. Discover more at www.gretchenpeters.com.
Story by Chris Manson, courtesy SoWal Partner - The Beachcomber.