January 28, 2012

P.O. Box 12078
Cincinnati, OH 45212

January 28, 2012

Hello again,

Well, 2012 has fully arrived; a new year circled the earth and found each of us, and here we are again, well on our way, ready or not, moving into what lies ahead. The turning of the year has always felt like a sacred moment to me. Before I was married, I would often borrow my parents’ little vintage camper, parked by a creek off the beaten path in Northeast Ohio. I would spend New Year’s eve walking alone after dark along a quiet road, and for some reason it often snowed, and it was like walking between the lines of a Robert Frost poem.

And I would sit at the little table in the camper and scribble down notes by the light of a small lamp, intuitively giving myself little spiritual exercises in which I would try to re-dream the past and remember the future.

After our Christmas tour wound down this past December (thank you, for so many memorable nights of shared music, and for the many little notes and gifts and encouraging words) Karin and I made our way back to Nowhere Farm for some much needed recovery time. In my post-tour haze the next morning, I picked out a lovely Norway spruce at a neighbor’s farm that, once upright in our pre-Civil War farm house, proved to be about two feet too tall. So it required some creative sawing and trimming in the dining room, but we mostly managed to laugh and keep the Chrismas cussin’ to a mininum. And decked out with many homemade ornaments made by young nephews and nieces, not to mention trivets that Karin and I have collected in our years of traveling together, it was indeed a festive tree in spite of the shave and haircut.

A big tree for a big year.

The holidays came and went and last week Karin and I started our working year by walking in our bare feet along the gulf coast of Florida at the 30a Songwriter’s festival. It was chilly in the shade but bright and warm in the sun, and while it was snowing back at the farm, Karin found herself eating Apalachicola Bay oysters outdoors for breakfast, and WOW were they tasty, and salty, and briny, and full of the infinite wonder of the sea. And we were reminded that the vocation of songwriting is a long and winding road, a road that often winds uphill, but it’s a vocation that nonetheless affords occasional unforgettable views and surprises.

And this week (big news) another Great Speckled Dog (in miniature) arrived at Nowhere Farm: we have taken on a blue merle Great Dane puppy called Miss Minnie Pearl – our Pearl Merle Girl. Shakey and Porter are a little unsure of whether she’s just visiting or staying, but sooner or later it will sink in that she is indeed their little sis. And then she will gradually become their BIG sis. So we’re trying not to die from all the cuteness, and I’m sure we’ll post some pictures from time to time.

Well Karin and I have been thinking about recording more music this year, so much more on that soon. (Feel like making another record or two?) But in the meanwhile, we need to try out a few of the new songs at a few of our favorite venues that we were unable to visit in 2011. We need to break the songs down to their simplest fundamentals and see how they fly. And revisit a few old friends as well. So without further ado, we thought we’d ask you out on a date or two. Care to dance?

Peace like a river, love like an ocean,

Linford and Karin


Wednesday, February 1, Annapolis, MD, Ram’s Head Tavern: An acoustic evening with Over the Rhine

Thursday, February 2, Frederick, MD, Weinberg Center For The Arts: An acoustic evening with Over the Rhine

Saturday, February.  18, Dallas, TX, The Granada Theatre
Sunday, February 19,  Austin, TX, The Cactus Café

Saturday, February 25, St. Joseph, MN, College of St. Benedict

More dates will be announced soon – stay tuned at overtherhine.com for all the latest.

Follow us on twitter, and chk the Over the Rhine Facebook page for daily updates.

As for your tender heart, this world’s gonna break it wide open; it ain’t gonna be pretty, but you’re not alone.