Letters

November 25, 2006

OVER THE RHINE
P.O. Box 12078
Cincinnati, OH 45212

November 25, 2006

Hello again,

Hope you all had a good Thanksgiving.

We’ve been having beautiful Indian Summer weather in Ohio. Sunny, mild… At night the stars have been bright and close, Orion’s sword pointed at the roof of the farmhouse. We’ve seen one twinkling star or planet (we’re overdue for a refresher map of the night sky) winking white, green, red and blue.

This morning the dogs did it again (for the second time since we’ve lived here): we were walking on the paths as the mist was disappearing from the fields, the sun just getting started, a few winter birds flitting through the bushes, all peaceful, when Elroy spotted a big whitetail buck and a doe about 50 yards away to the East, silhouetted by the sun like a picture you’d see on an old hardware store calendar.

I didn’t know whether to be proud or pissed off as our Great Dane mix (who looks like an oversized Greyhound when he runs) and our year-old Weimaraner (sleek, rippling muscles, the nose of a blood hound) took off full-bore, wide open, flat out, everything on ten after the offending wildlife. The deer waved their white tails around a bit and began loping away. But then the buck realized that these dogs weren’t going to lose interest anytime soon – in fact they singled him out and these dogs were damn fast – and he changed his tune pretty quickly and began covering some ground real quick, rack tucked back and hoofs blazing away.

Have you seen a large animal with antlers try to outrun a pack of wolves recently? It awakens certain latent primal instincts.

I watched the chase for about a half a mile before the dogs and the buck disappeared over a grassy slope and down into a wooded creek area. I’m sure once the buck got into his element, and jumped a fence or two, the outsmarted dogs found themselves with nothing but burning lungs and mud-splattered tummies.

But in the meanwhile, it’s an odd feeling to be standing on the edge of a small farm that once had beloved dogs and suddenly has none.

I ran slowly about a mile through the fields toward the East, whistling, calling. Elroy! Shakey! Nothing. A large hawk flew down out of one of the tree lines and circled away toward the north, the sun making the white feathers on the inside of his wings flash like mirrors.

About 15 minutes later, just as I’m starting to wonder what life will be like without them and begin circling back, I see the black and white head of a loping Dane begin to appear over a small grassy hill in the distance like the head of a distant trotting horse, and then here comes the rest of him and shortly thereafter a Weimaraner, tongue flopping out the side of his grinning mouth, ears waving hello.

Well, Karin had said this would be a good day to give them a final pre-winter bath, so we’re going to get the hose out and wash them down. Karin will say things like, Elroy, Did you run away from your forever home?! And the dogs will listen, and we’ll wonder how much they understand, and they will flop down on the porch and gaze out into the open air happy on the farm.

(And you know you live in the country when your dogs chase a buck over the horizon and you come home and tell your wife and she asks, How many points?)

+++

Well, it’s about time for those of us in Over the Rhine to chase our dreams over the horizon as well. They always outsmart us, but they make us happy. We come home with the musical equivalent of burning lungs and muddy bellies. Here’s a recap once again of what we’ve got for you.

SNOW ANGELS.

With eleven original songs, we think you’ll find Snow Angels a quintessential Over the Rhine recording. We had a great time recording this one, our 2nd Christmas CD in ten years. If you order your copy (which will ship in early December) at OvertheRhine.com now, we’ll send you an address where you can download eight of Karin’s Nowhere Farm sketches: early, bare boned versions of many of the songs that eventually became Snow Angels. (And if you just can’t wait, Snow Angels is available now on i-Tunes, E-Music etc.)

LIVE FROM NOWHERE VOLUME TWO.

A little tradition we started last year… We collect the best 2006 concert highlights we can come up with onto a limited edition, signed and numbered CD. Pre-order yours at OvertheRhine.com. (Volume One is sold out, but is available for download on i-Tunes etc.) Volume Two will ship in March with a small treat for those that pre-order.

OVER THE RHINE CHRISTMAS GATHERING.

Karin and I would like to invite you to join us on December 17th at 3pm (the day after our Taft Theater Homecoming Concert) for a holiday gathering featuring an acoustic performance, some spoken word, some conversation and of course some festive food and drink. We did this last year as well, and it’s a great way to end our working year, surrounded by our extended musical family. See OvertheRhine.com for directions and more details.

OVER THE RHINE BLEND.

We’re now up and running: Join us for a cup of good coffee – the kind we now wake up with every morning at Nowhere Farm, specially blended for artists, writers, musicians, day dreamers and night walkers!

This unique blend is fresh-roasted exclusively for Over the Rhine by Chuck Roast. You order, the beans are roasted the day they ship, Oh my.

***OVER THE RHINE Snow Angels Tour 2006***

Thu Nov 30: Columbus OH, Little Brothers, ages 18+. Take a dive with us! It’s always amazing to us how you transform this piss and vinegar club into a warm, inviting room full of music, laughter and conversation. Consistently one of our favorite crowds anywhere.

Fri Dec 01: Bloomington IN, Buskirk/Chumley Theater, all ages. This lovely theater in one of the Midwest’s best-kept-secret towns is a beauty. Bloomington features no Interstate Hwy, and the widest array of Int’l Cuisine that you’ll find just about anywhere. Two Tibetan Monasteries, great Thai food, our favorite recording studio – you can be sure we’ll be taping this concert for LFN Volume Two. Join us for a special evening (an easy, beautiful drive from Cincinnati).

Sat Dec 02: Chicago IL, Double Door, 21+. Time to turn the volume back up. This was one of our favorite evenings on the OtR/Hem tour earlier this year.

Mon Dec 04: Holland MI, Hope College (Knickerbocker Theater), all ages. Come find us in a quaint Northern town, where the sun sets early this time of year.

Tue Dec 05: Kent OH, The Kent Stage, all ages. Another one of our favorite theaters with red velvet seats and a piano with a broken heart.

Thu Dec 07: New York NY, Joe’s Pub, all ages. (Two Shows). This venue is a regular stop for everyone from Emmylou Harris to Nellie McKay. Our first time – come find us in the Big Apple at Christmastime. Order dinner, stay awhile.

Fri Dec 08: Philadelphia PA, Theatre of Living Arts, all ages. One of our favorite venues, this is the first year we get to play a Christmas Concert at TLA.

Sat Dec 09: Annapolis MD, Ram’s Head, 21+. Last time we played Ram’s Head it snowed and snowed and snowed. We’ll see what the grand piano can conjure up this time.

Sun Dec 10: Washington DC, Jammin Java, all ages. Cozy room, great food and drink.

Thu Dec 14: Nashville TN, 3rd & Lindsley, all ages. Look for a musical guest or three.

Fri Dec 15: Lexington KY, The Dame, 21+. We love that hat shop next door, and we love the warm folks that find their way to The Dame whenever we show up.

Sat Dec 16: Cincinnati OH, Our Homecoming Concert at the beautiful Taft Theatre, all ages. Special Guest: Mary Gauthier. (If you haven’t heard Mary’s music, check out her CD, Mercy Now. Wow. Road trips are us – hope you can join us for this special evening.)

Sun Dec 17: Cincinnati OH, Gathering/Soiree/Exclusive performance at St. Elizabeth’s, all ages. You’re all invited! Check out OvertheRhine.com for maps and more details.

Please pass along this info to any family and friends who might be interested.

STREET TEAMS.

We’ve always known that our music couldn’t survive without your help. If you’d like to assist us in getting the word out about upcoming concerts (namely, print out and post some fliers up at your favorite neighborhood haunts) please join our street team. (Please note, we’re starting a separate mailing list for those that join – you’ll be the first to hear about upcoming concerts, and we’ll try to have some fun along the way.) More info and downloadable fliers at:
http://www.overtherhine.com/team/index.html

MERCH VOLUNTEERS;

We need at least two volunteers for each of our Christmas concerts to help manage the Imaginary Apple Orchard Boutique. Lots of music, t-shirts, hand-screened posters – the good stuff. It’s a good opportunity to meet some great people, and we appreciate your help. We’ll give you tickets to the concert, and you can help make it all work. Please e-mail Brandon@overtherhine.com with the words “OtR MERCH VOLUNTEER [City/State]” in the subject line. If you don’t hear back from us, don’t worry – it just means we’re already covered.

Well, I think that’s about it for today.

Make sure the people you love know they are loved.

And hope you can join us – we’ll see you soon.

Linford for Over the Rhine