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Carol Young & Kym Warner
"The Greencards"
The Greencards
December 2009
Announce the departure of fiddler Eamon McLoughlin, a member of the band since its inception in Austin Texas seven years ago, who is leaving to pursue other musical challenges at the end of the year.

"We wish Eamon all the very best for his future endeavors and thank him for being a part of the great musical journey over the past seven years."

"Eamon would like to thank Kym and Carol for this wonderful adventure together, and many more thanks to all of the people who have supported the band — anyone who has come to a show, listened to our music, played the band on the radio, and everyone who took a risk on the band when no-one knew who we were. With all sincerity, thank you very much."
Kym, Carol and Eamon
"Mighty Fine..Mighty Fine!"

It's finally here! You can order your CD here to have a copy delivered to your door, or download it at iTunes right now! Take the album for a test drive and stream it here on AOL: AOL Music.


Hello Greencards family,

We hope you are as excited as we are about the upcoming release of "Fascination", which is coming out on our new label Sugar Hill on April 21st. The band absolutely loved working with producer Jay Joyce on this project - he's a true innovator in the studio, and he's added a new dimension to The Greencards' sound. You may have heard his work before - in recent years he's produced fantastic records by Patty Griffin, John Hiatt, Derek Trucks, and The Duhks, among many others.

We are excited to announce that PRE-ORDERS for Fascination are coming very soon -- starting THIS FRIDAY, March 13th, you will be able to place your order by following this link (PLEASE DISREGARD CD BABY'S NOTE THAT SAYS IT IS "OUT OF STOCK." IT WILL BE AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER ON MARCH 13.):


The first 150 orders that come in will receive copies that are personally signed by each member of the band! So make sure you put yours in on Friday or soon thereafter.

In other news, the official Greencards website has gone through a dramatic redesign, so make sure you stop over and check it out! There are two exclusive new tracks from the record up there as well: http://www.thegreencards.com

For all you Facebook users, The Greencards also have a brand new Facebook page. We're keeping it up-to-date with all the latest tour dates, videos, etc, and it's a really convenient spot to keep track of all the latest news. As the record release date approaches, we'll also have some exclusive content up there that you won't find anywhere else. So - make sure to stop by and become a fan:


Finally, the band will be constantly touring throughout the Spring and Summer - make sure you check the website, Facebook, or Myspace for the latest dates. Here are some of the upcoming stops:


Driftwood, TX

Old Settler's Music Festival


Brooksville, FL

String Break Festival


Austin, TX

Waterloo Records (in-store)


Wilkesboro, NC



Vienna, VA

Jammin' Java


Annapolis, MD

Rams Head On Stage


Boston, MA

Cafe 939 at Berklee


New York, NY

Mercury Lounge


Pittsburgh, PA

Rex Theatre


Philadelphia, PA

World Cafe


Chicago, IL

Abbey Pub


Columbia, MO



Winters, CA

The Palms


Crystal Bay, NV

Crystal Bay Casino


Chico, CA

Sierra Nevada Tap Room


Tuolumne, CA

Black Oak Casino Lounge


Santa Barbara, CA

Lobero Theater


Yosemite, CA

Strawberry Music Festival


Fall River, MA

Narrows Center for the Arts


Preston, CT

Strawberry Park


Saratoga Springs, NY

Caffé Lena


Knoxville, TN

Bijou Theatre


Hiawassee, GA

Georgia Mountain Roots Festival


Telluride, CO

Telluride Festival


Buffalo, WY

Big Horn Mountain Festival


Snowbird, UT

Snowbird Event Center


Somerset, KY

Master Musicians Festival

Do you think you can help promote any of our 2009 non-festival shows by posting fliers in your neighborhood and spreading the word to your friends via email, Myspace, or Facebook? In return, you could earn a spot on the guest list plus one free t-shirt. Contact our street team coordinator at gcsteam@attglobal.net to sign up. Be sure to include your city and zip code.

That's it for now - take care everybody,

The Greencards and Friends

2008 - Album 4
Sugar Hill Records is proud to announce the signing of Grammy nominated acoustic music stalwarts The Greencards. The band is busy now in the studio with award winning producer Jay Joyce crafting their fourth album, slated for release in the spring of 2009.

Multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Kym Warner says of the signing, “As The Greencards enter into a new phase of pushing musical boundaries, we are very excited to have signed with a label capable of moving with us. Our new album is already underway, and with producer Jay Joyce we are experiencing a focused creativity like never before. We look forward to a long and productive partnership with Sugar Hill Records.”

The three piece group consists of Warner, Carol Young on bass and vocals, and Eamon McLoughlin on fiddle and viola. True to their name the band is an amalgam of international talent, hailing from Australia and the UK, that has come to rest in Nashville, TN by way of Austin. Their ever-evolving acoustic sound has earned them accolades (including Austin Music Awards, Americana Music Awards, and a Grammy nomination among others) and spots on some of the countries most revered festival stages (Telluride Festival, Austin City Limits Fest, and Bonnaroo to name a few).

The groups virtuosity and deep musical integrity make them a great addition to the legacy-driven, roots-heavy roster at Sugar Hill, one of America’s most revered and (long lived) independent labels. Gary Paczosa, VP of A&R, comments "The Greencards are a natural fit for us. I worked with them on two previous projects and have always been impressed by their musical vision and their focused approach to their career and development."

Look for music soon and check www.thegreencards.com  for more information, tour dates, and updates from the studio and check www.sugarhillrecords.com  for the latest on release dates, label updates and more.
The New Album - Watch This Short Video of the First Few Days in the Studio!
With just over a month to go, we're getting ready to disappear into a cool air-conditioned studio and record our new album! We'll be working with Nashville Producer Jay Joyce (The Duhks, Patty Griffin, many more...), and he promises to work us hard!
We've landed a dream gig, a 'peach' of a gig in fact.
We have been asked to perform on the Cayamo Cruise
"A Journey Through Song".   2008
It means that from Feb 28th – March 7th, 2009, we will sail from Miami, Florida, on board the incredible Norwegian Dawn cruise-liner, journeying around the gorgeous Caribbean. It's a fantastic ship - there are 12 restaurants, 9 bars, Casino, Fitness Spa and various other luxuries – we plan to take full advantage of all of the above! We will also be making stops in Samana, St. Thomas, Tortola and Great Stirrup Cay, a private island with pristine beaches and clear blue water.
And yet the best is yet to come: the entertainment on the ship is as good as any festival we can think of. Artists confirmed include Lyle Lovett, Patty Griffin, Shawn Colvin, John Hiatt, Buddy Miller, Brandi Carlile, Mindy Smith, Joe Ely, Darrell Scott, The Indigo Girls, Shawn Mullins, Tift Merritt AND others! This is really amazing! Could there be a better combination of amazing weather, a fantasy style cruise ship, and some of the greatest artists and musicians in the world, playing round the clock! We can't think of one...

So, we know we're going – they've given us our cabins and given us our gig times. But we want to have some of our fans on the ship, people we know and love from around the country. Take a look at the website (www.cayamo.com ) and just think about joining us – in the Caribbean, on a cruise ship, under the sun and listening to the best musicians you’ll find anywhere.
Hope to see you there,
Carol, Kym and Eamon
June 2008 Newsletter
There's no slowing down for us this month, we'll be all over the map in our Chevrolet van, complete with sun screen and mapquest directions!

We are delighted to have been invited to take part in CMA Fan Fest in Nashville, on Saturday June 6 - for those unable to make it to Music City, you can listen LIVE (!) on XM Radio at 4:15pm; Channels X-Country and Highway 16. We'll be rubbing shoulders with folks like Jedd Hughes, Michael Martin Murphy and Alan Jackson!

We'll also be performing at one of the biggest festivals in the world -- Bonnaroo - on June 15 at 5:15pm, just before Alison Krauss and Robert Plant at 6:30pm! This is a triple whammy, and we won't believe it till we see it.

6/5 NASHVILLE NC Nash Arts Center - 8pm
6/6 LEWISBURG WV Carnegie Hall - 8pm
6/7 NASHVILLE TN CMA Fan Fair - Chevy Stage (Sommet Centre) - 4:15pm
6/12 NASHVILLE TN Station Inn - 9pm
6/13 CHATTANOOGA TN Riverbend Festival - 9pm
6/14 HIAWASSEE GA Georgia Roots Music Festival - 4:40pm
6/15 MANCHESTER TN Bonnaroo Festival - 5:15pm
6/21 SPARTANBURG SC Music Camp Festival - 8:30pm
6/26 CRYSTAL BAY NV Crystal Bay Casino - 9pm
6/27 FELTON CA Don Quixotes - 8pm
6/28 LAYTONVILLE CA Kate Wolf Festival - 11:15pm
6/29 LAYTONVILLE CA Kate Wolf Festival - 3:45pm
Carol, Kym and Eamon
The Greencards are included in the prestigious lineup at this years 2008 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. Major acts include: Alison Krauss and Robert Plant, Willie Nelson, Kanye West, Jack Johnson,The Bluegrass Allstars feat. Luke Bulla, Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Bela Fleck, Edgar Meyer and Bryan Sutton plus many more!

The Greencards take to the "Blue Room Stage" on Sunday June 15th @ 5:15pm.
Further information can be found at
www.bonnaroo.com .

Thanks for taking the time to get to the bottom on this newsletter. Hope to see you at a show in the near future!
Carol, Kym + Eamon
Grammy Nomination 2008
The Greencards on the Grammy Red Carpet
The Greencards received a Grammy nomination in the "Best Country Instrumental" category for "Mucky The Duck", a track from their current album, Viridian. The instrumental was penned by Kym Warner, mandolin player for the band and was named after one of the band's favorite venues in Houston Texas, The Mucky Duck! The awards will be held at The Staple Centre, Los Angeles on February 10th, 2008.
Eamon's September Jounal
September 6. 07
The elements up here in Boise have been causing a lot of trouble for the locals – forest fires along the Idaho/Oregon corridor have caused the air to become smoggy and thick. Shortly after we arrived at our hotel on Main Street, I took a walk and noticed the air smelt like Ireland – when they burn peat and turf it heats the air and fills your nostrils with a warm smoke. On a search for lunch, I walked a couple of blocks and when I was too far to turn back the heavens erupted with a downpour that had the locals thankful (they would douse the fires, and me soaked from head to toe cursing my luck. All this for a carton of egg-fried rice…

Our outdoor show was moved to a great venue called The Reef, a swanky Tropical bar where the patrons order drinks called ‘Breeze’ and chomp coconut shrimp. Whereas we were expecting over a thousand people outdoors, a few hundred people slowly crammed into the club. By the time of the show we were faced with a hungry crowd who went wild when we tossed them morsels of fast tempo music. The staff was great and re-filled our glasses with lovely red wine. After the encore the crowd’s appetite had finally subsided and we chatted with folks and signed their CDs. All in all we had a great show in spite of the rain!

We relaxed afterwards with a little more red wine, and yes, we had to order some of those shrimp to see what all the fuss was about. A great singer, James Orr, armed with just a guitar and a loop station, entertained the club for the late show. He would create a groove on his guitar by banging it, and then loop it so it created a rhythm track for the song. He did the same with vocals and guitar lines – how he kept aware of all that was going on I’ll never know. Fans of K.T. Tunstall maybe aware of this technology and how fun it can be – when it is used to great musical effect it is no longer just a novelty.

We’re now on our way to Oregon to play the Three Sisters Folk Festival, but we have a long drive through small towns to get there. This month has some great festivals including Winfield in a couple of weeks – can’t wait for that! There’ll be little sleep for us that weekend, and lots of late night jamming with old friends.

Hope to see you guys at a show sometime soon.
August 21, 2007
Driving Ourselves Crazy!
We’ve done some arduous drives in our time, but last week has to make the top 5: Lake Placid NY to Nashville TN non-stop. That’s over 1000 miles and 18 hours in case you’re wondering. Kym took the morning shift as he always does, and quite frankly I don’t know how he does it. Rarely drinking coffee he somehow manages to keep perfectly alert as the sun comes up. The rest of the band goes straight to sleep and perhaps it is our snoring that keeps him awake.

I slept most of the morning due to an extremely late night spent with our guitar player Andy Falco, cruising the Main Street of Lake Placid - a gorgeous town with plenty of cute restaurants and bars. Andy and I got back to the rooms and got a little sleep before the van left, but no way could I have driven six hours on such a short amount of sleep. So, I snoozed and snored my way into Pennsylvania, taking over the wheel around 2pm. My iPod being broken has left me with an over reliance on XM Radio, which is fine, but I am awful for changing the station every five minutes. That is not only dangerous and distracting but also annoying for everyone else I’m sure. Luckily, Andy presented his iPod when he could take no more and launched us into some classic George Strait country music! “Somewhere In Texas” is a great example of modern country music, and it got a CMA award for its duet with Lee Ann Womack – proof they still make country music in Nashville, even if they’re singing about Texas a lot of the time! Le Ann’s album “There’s More Where That Came From” was up next (also great!), and by the time we finished Alan Jackson’s “Red Like a Rose” we had restored our faith in Nashville’s country music credentials, and I had also finished my six hour shift – phew!

I swapped seats with Carol who was working on setting a new world record on longest time spent sewing. She has recently taken to making her own clothes with nothing but some fabric and a few needles. The results are great and she has even offered to re-work any of our old items hidden in the closet. Keep looking on late–night infomercials as you may see Carol introducing her own fashion line…

The van finally shuddered to a halt in west Nashville as a bunch of tired and shaky musicians fell out the door. We have driven worse trips, but this one had really taken a toll. Fortunately we now have a week off to recover, and our gigs in Urbana IL and Philadelphia Folk Fest were easy travelling. We can now relax, knowing that it is a few days before we have to worry about the impending drive out to Colorado – ouch!
August 2007 Newsletter
We are very pleased to announce The Greencards will make their first appearance at IBMA Fanfest (International Bluegrass Music Association) on Friday October 5th. For more information on the event running from October 1st - 7th in Nashville TN, including ticketing, go to: www.ibma.org   or phone toll free: 1-888-438-4262.

Other performers at event include: Emmylou Harris, Mountain Heart (with Adam Steffey), Cherryholmes, Infamous Stringdusters, Nashville Bluegrass Band and more.

If you'd like to check out new live footage from a recent performance at a great venue, The Ark in Ann Arbor MI you can go to:  www.myspace.com/thegreencards   where we feature 3 tracks from "Viridian". This is definately one of our favorite venues in the country and always a lively audience.

Other news... Eamon is now a "specialty writer" for a CMT Blog. You can head over to blog.cmt.com or www.thegreencards.com/journal.html  and catch up on our tour and festival reviews... check it out!

Further show info can be found at www.thegreencards.com/tour.html  or contact the venue.
See you soon!!
The Greencards
Eamon's Journal
July 31, 2007
I climbed up the stairs to my apartment yesterday, my suitcase trailing behind me. We’ve just returned home after a weekend in Lyons Colorado, where we played the RockyGrass Festival. Throwing my suitcase onto the bed, I realised how frustrating it is to unpack a suitcase that will be re-packed again in a matter of days – with much of the same stuff, only freshly laundered! Still, the travelling wardrobe is emptied and stowed under the bed at least until Thursday when we leave for Idaho. My place is starting to feel unfamiliar and more and more like a temporary stopgap until we get on the road again - a place to clean up, pay bills and prep for another tour. Having kept this schedule for a few years now I know that it will be like this until the end of the year; the key is to keep your energy up and play the best music you can.

Nickel Creek played the last night of RockyGrass, and proved the highlight for many fans. This is their last year together before they take a break (of undetermined length…), so expectations were high when they took the stage. They seemed very relaxed together and played off each other in a jovial way – made for a really enjoyable show! That seemed to be the mantra for the whole Festival – Enjoyment! RockyGrass is set in a beautiful campground surrounded by high red rocks, and everyone seems to relax and enjoy the festivities. As a little reward for ourselves, we took the whole weekend to hang out with all the other performers and simply enjoy the music.

Highlights for me were Peter Rowan with Sharon Gilchrist and Bryan Sutton, Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives, and an impromptu set between The Biscuit Burners and us! We only had an hour before the show to figure out our program and there was a nervous energy as we filled the stage with eleven musicians all wondering if this was going to work – and it did! Just before we kicked off, Casey Driessen (Red-Headed Fiddle Supremo!) wandered so close to the stage that we grabbed him and told him he’d be playing the set with us! Thus, The Biscuit-Cards (as we were billed) were armed with triple fiddles and we charged confidently down the set list. Sarah and Odessa joined Carol on fantastic harmonies and together the three singers sounded amazing on songs like Kentucky Girl and Bury Me Beneath The Weeping Willow. At times it was chaotic as we arranged the songs on the fly – but that’s what makes those events so fun for both the audience and the musicians! Special thanks to Casey for his help and endless creativity!

Festivals really celebrate music and they make all the long miles and difficult sound checks worthwhile – now back home in East Nashville I feel rejuvenated and re-inspired after such a great time. I have a whole list of tunes to learn after hearing all the young musicians picking backstage; there’s a new cast of players just waiting to join the party! Hope to see you sometime this summer!
Casa di Falco
There are many ways to find good accommodation on the road – Priceline.com, loyalty accounts, paying through the nose – but we have just left the place that trumps everything else. You won’t find it on any website, and it’s certainly not in The Lonely Planet Guide. Nestled in the heart of Garden City, amongst the well kept lawns of beautiful detached American homes lies the Casa di Falco, distinguishable only by a f-hole style character above the front windows. This is not a restaurant or Inn, but in fact the home of our guitar player Andy Falco who kindly invited us to stay with his parents for a few days whilst playing in the area. Jack and Franny invited us in when we arrived at midnight, gave us our own air-conditioned rooms, and fried up some eggs and ham for these errant musicians. The band was happy!

We played some great shows in the area, including The Turning Point in Piermont NY, and the Gild Hall in Delaware. Thanks to all who came and made both shows so enjoyable – special thanks to the folks on the street team for these shows. It makes such a huge difference to the show and hopefully the street-teamers are happy with their free tickets! Let us know if you can help!

Andy Falco has played guitar with us on and off for a couple of years, and is an incredible addition to any outfit he works with. The son of Italian-Americans Jack and Franny, Andy carries with him a sense of history and tradition that has been engrained by his upbringing. Mama and Papa Falco have a home that carries a strong sense of family and charity. Many picture frames around the house are filled with smiling faces from the past, telling stories a newcomer to the house can only guess at – smiling babies who have now have become adults, newly wed couples in blissful happiness now marking decades together. Faded photographs really do tell a thousand stories.

Jack Falco is a retired Architect who designed the sunroom where he can often be found digesting a book – that is, whenever he is not in the kitchen cooking food for anyone who even mentions they might be a little peckish! On our last night, he and his wife Franny cooked up the most incredible Italian meal I have ever had. I could go on forever about the incomparable chicken cutlets, the eggplant Parmesan that was in a class of its own, or the peerless lasagne, but even as I write my mouth is watering… To be honest though, good food is only one half of a good meal. The more important part of the experience is the company, and this was a table overflowing with companionship and affection. Franny has raised some lovely kids and they all came from all over New York City to eat at Ma and Pa’s place (except Thomas on holiday in Paris), and visit with their brother Andy.

They made us all feel very welcome, and as we went to bed we wondered if we would ever be hungry again, or if we would ever eat food that good ever again. I doubt we will – at least not until we feast again at the table of Casa Di Falco! Thanks for the hospitality Jack and Franny!
Appreciate all of your efforts. Here's a link to where the voting happens, and if you have a second, make sure that they hear from you: www.cmt.com/shows/dyn/cmt_pure_12_pack_countdown/series.jhtml
The Greencards
With your help, we've continued to stay "on the list", which means we're still in rotation on CMT. We thank you for voting so well and ask again if you get a minute or two, continue to vote for The Greencards video, "Waiting On The Night". And while you're there vote a few times. It's super tough for a little, bitty acoustic band, with a bunch of foreigners as members to keep up with the likes of Toby Keith, Keith Urban and those big Nashville guys! We certainly do appreciate the help. Go to www.myspace.com/thegreencards  (click on the banner), or directly to CMT.com.

This is a quick note to say thanks to all of you on the street team. People who post flyers, email friends and generally spread the word on upcoming shows. Without this kind of assistance it would be almost impossible to stay out on the road and do the amount of shows we do each year. This line of advertising and promoting a show on a grass-roots level has proven very successful. To those of you on the list, and those of you that just pitch in anyway, we thank you.
See you soon!!
The Greencards
Collaborations and Cross-Pollination.
As we drove out I-70 for the umpteenth time this trip, looking out into nothing but desert, our guitar player, Matt Wingate, announced he was officially bored of driving out west. To be honest, it was hard to disagree with him. This was our third week of the tour, and while the shows were going great, the driving was beginning to take its toll – the stark scenery often makes you feel like you’re on a tour of Mars. As far as the eye can see, there is nothing but harsh, arid desert. Only a handful of bushes stand in futile protest to the infertile sandy ground. Rock cliffs stretch high into the air forming a corridor on either side of the freeway; you feel like you’re driving on the bottom of a long deserted canyon. Everyone breathes a sigh of relief as we pull into a city and find civilisation once more.
The show last night was in Layton UT, just north of Salt Lake City. It was a beautiful amphitheatre, the night was cool and the audience was rapt. The only blight on the evening was the interruption by several F-16 jets as they flew overhead and headed into the desert for nigh-time training before being posted in Afghanistan or Iraq. New York City this most certainly is not…
Tonight we play once more with the incomparable Jake Shimabakuro – incredible Ukulele player who has redefined his instrument. For the uninitiated, we are not talking of someone in a large Hawaiian shirt, adorned in silk lei, singing traditional Island songs. Jake’s repertoire includes original material inspired by Flamenco, The Flecktones, as well as covers of folks like Chick Korea. Jake has a very commanding and modern stage presence, and cradling his Ukulele in his arms, plays beautiful ballads as well as high-energy mind blowing material. Luckily for us, Jake sticks around to play with us at the end. He suggested the unlikely cover of Cyndi Lauper’s ‘Time After Time’ – actually a highlight of the evening for me. And then we all blow a gasket on the ever-reliable Orange Blossom Special. Fun stuff!

Hopefully we’ll do some more touring with Jake, we’ll keep you posted as and when dates are confirmed. I have a few more journals to post in the next few days so keep checking back when you have a free minute – now we have a few days off I can type up my scribbles and post them online.
See you guys soon,
Can you believe it…we’ve clocked up almost 6,000 miles on the van since June 6th!!
This tour started out in the other Nashville in NC, about 30 minutes east of Raleigh NC and somehow we’ve ended up on the west coast..now as I’m writing this we are making our way through beautiful Colorado.

Yes, it is festival season and we’ve played some brilliant ones so far. Early on in the tour there was Hiawassee Roots Fest. in Georgia. It was our second time at this one and I think it’s one of the best sounding festivals out there….indoors and air conditioned as well…what more could you ask for!!! Had a good set, packed our stuff up and drove overnight to Wakarusa Festival in Lawrence KS. Now this was not your average festival. Not only a great line-up of mega proportions which included Sam Bush (one of our personal favorites), Michael Franti, Martin Sexton (who absolutely blew me away with vocals like you don’t hear to often), The Waybacks and The Avett Brothers, the highlight of the day for the guys had to be a group of young and vibrant girls walking around the festival topless!! Yes, you heard right, topless with their chests painted in metallic colours with butterfly designs and hearts etc…very liberating for them I’m sure and very entertaining for the male members of The Greencards!!

One would think it’s all downhill from there but not so. We decided to hit the Reno NV Casino circuit for a couple of days on our way out west. The gambling thing is not really for me so I headed into town on that search for good coffee. Not only did I find a good roast in the centre of town, I found the Truckee River running right through the town, rapids and all…you could even hire tubes or kayaks. This was me for the entire day.

Next was Grass Valley Festival in California…This is said to be a more traditional festival and I have to admit I was concerned our music might not be received too well, being that we plug our instruments in, I play electric bass, not to mention we don’t have a banjo in our line up….Not the case at all. This festival was a surprise for all of us. The people were very welcoming and accommodating with ears and hearts open…it’s in a first rate setting with loads and loads of camping and facilities…hope we get to do this one again sometime.

Cave Creek Coffee Company in Cave Creek AZ…our second time to play there. Great food, wine. A couple of hundred people packed the outside venue on a Sunday night (Father’s day). We had a blast even though it was an outdoor show and the temp reached 109 that day!! Highly recommend you stop off if you’re heading through Phoenix anytime soon.

Then came Jake Shimabukuro, this guy is a genius on the Ukele.
Thanks to the powers that be we have been on tour this week with Jake playing Flagstaff AZ, Durango CO, Layton UT and tonight Palisade CO. We then hit Albuquerque NM, then Aspen CO together before heading back to Nashville TN. There are no words to describe this guy’s talent, it has to be seen to believed. He goes it solo, no effects, just him and his Uke…and he’s adorable!!

More to follow soon when I get out of this van!!!
p.s…sorry if I’m late in responding to emails and myspace…it gets tougher from the road when we have crazy drives....promise I’ll get back to you soon as I can.
Hello Cardholders,
June will be one of our busiest touring months of the year. We're excited to be hitting some really cool festivals and seeing some great shows ourselves. Then we get to do a bunch of dates with our friend Jake Shimabukuro. For those of you who have never seen Jake be sure that you make it there in time if he plays first (some shows on this leg of dates with him, he plays first and sometimes we do, and you can usually count on us doing a couple of songs together at the end of the evening). He is really one of the best musicians and exciting entertainers that we know. Here's the list of dates:
June Tour Dates
6/7 Nashville, NC Nash Arts Center
6/8 Knoxville, TN Bijou Theater (w/ Jake Shimbukuro)
6/9 Hiawassee, GA Georgia Mountain Roots and Music Festival
6/10 Lawrence, KS Wakarusa Festival
6/14 Grass Valley, CA Grass Valley Festival
6/15 Grass Valley, CA Grass Valley Festival
6/17 Cave Creek, AZ Cave Creek Coffee Company
6/18 Flagstaff, AZ Orpheum Theater (w/ Jake)
6/19 Durango, CO Community Concert Hall (w/ Jake)
6/20 Layton, UT Kenley Centennial Amphitheater (w/ Jake)
6/21 Palisade, CO Grande River Vineyards (w/Jake)
6/22 Albuquerque, NM Rio Grande Zoo (w/ Jake)
6/23 Snowmass Village, CO Snowmass Village Mall (w/ Jake)
You can pre-purchase tickets at our site by clicking the link below:

Thanks to you guys, we've been consistently in the CMT Pure Country 12-Pack countdown. Currently, we're at #5! We sincerely appreciate all of your efforts. Here's a link to where the voting happens, and if you have a second, make sure that they hear from you:
The Greencards
“You Can’t Handle The Tooth!”
Picture if you will, a scene from the old black and white movie “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” – specifically the one where Quasimodo clasps his head in agony and cries ‘The bells! The bells!’ You now have an accurate likeness of yours truly this past weekend as I suffered through two aching teeth that have caused my jaw to swell up like a balloon. Popping Advil like they were Smarties has not really helped, so I have had to adopt the diet of a two year old and eat all my foods on a no solids basis; I am the soup king of East Nashville!

We played some new venues this weekend – the 930 in Louisville is a multi function venue that includes an art gallery amongst other things. The show was great despite my physical homage to the great character of Victor Hugo. We stayed plush as we journeyed to the great arch of St. Louis and played for the first time at the Lucas School House; these folks are clearly putting money into this venture and the place looks and sounds great! They also have a fantastic chef who wooed us with his pasta linguine, artichoke soup, deli tray par excellence, and finely crafted strawberries. After that kind of treatment we are anybody’s!

The last show was at the end of a very long and very boring drive through the endless cornfields of Iowa. The M-Shop is however a really fun venue in the style of The Cactus Café in Austin, and sits on the edge of ISU campus in Ames. Our XM radio is on the blink so we hooked up our iPods and ransacked our old record collections to amuse ourselves. Unfortunately, the next day we had to turn around and drive the twelve hours back to Nashville so we were utterly and completely bored by the time we arrived. Somebody please provide us with a bus and a driver, please…!

A few folks wrote in and suggested some new releases worth checking out – Andrew Bird, Tom Brosseau and Rachel Harrington are on my list for this week’s shopping. I was quite impressed with the sophomore effort from Brandi Carlile whose passionate and soul aching performances reminded me at times of Patty Griffin, but with a harder sound. If anyone has any other recommendations, please let me know! I am looking forward to the new Paul McCartney album next month, on which he plays all the instruments, a la his first solo record which may be my favourite thing from him post-Beatles.

Right now I’m off to call the dentist and await his verdict upon my Hampsteads – not looking forward to the bill either… My days of eating steaks are far behind me these days and unless I start bringing my own food processor to restaurants, I fear it will be a while before I can do anything other than dream of chomping on a cut of sirloin. So, I guess it’s true what they say: abscess really does make the heart grow fonder!

On this CD Carol, Kym and Eamon have special Guests - Jedd Hughes, Bryan Sutton and Andrea Zonn
The Greencards at Joe's Pub New York City - 21st April
Courtesy of Kerry Carter
A Nashville Moment
From Carol
It's been a long time since I've had full-body chills.
Around 10:30pm last night a weather front came through bringing heavy rain, temperatures dropped a few degrees but nothing major. Still nothing was going to stop me from purchasing a $15 ticket to see The Dave Rawlings Machine in an unannounced appearance at The Basement in Nashville.

I handed over my money to the door guy and went straight to the bar to order a top-shelf vodka and grapefruit juice, my drink of choice. Not only was I pumped about seeing DRM for the first time, this was my first night off after a 3 week north east tour which just finished up with a rockin' show at Joes Pub in NYC with the Everybody Fields (also rockin').

I ran into fellow aussie, Jedd Hughes and his girl, Katherine and gabbed for about an hour until Dave and Gill casually strolled onto the 4 inch high stage. This meant only one thing for me, grab a chair and stand on it or I'd have no hope of seeing a thing!

Now I know I'm a "sound snob" but I just expect clear sound...unfortunately it wasn't as clear as I would like but this is a tiny room (about 80 capacity) so there was quite a bit of quality tone coming directly from the stage...and quality it was, those two together is something special to witness. Dave did most of the singing but Gillian sang harmony on almost everything. GORGEOUS!!!

About midway through the 60 min set Dave made an announcement that they would like to bring up a friend..."please welcome Norah Jones to the stage". Norah came prepared. She had her wonderful Neumann KMS 105 microphone already plugged in, and dragged it to centre stage between the two. They spoke briefly about Dolly and The Ryman show they recorded together a little while ago and then Dave kicked off the intro to the Townes Van Zant song, "Loretta"...all sung in 3 part harmony. Truly a Nashville moment.

By the time they finished the set, which included 2 encores, the rain had stopped, I drove home and had some vegemite on toast....excellent!

Try to catch some live music...it's wonderful for the soul!
p.s. Great Aussie guitar player alert. Mark Punch will be playing in Nashville May 2-7 with Jackie Bristow, try and get out to hear them if you're in town. Nashville Scene + Rage should have show details next week....or www.myspace.com/jackiebristow
"Movin’ On" song samples
Vote for Keith’s and The Greencards’ New Videos on the CMT.com Weekly Countdown
Here's your chance to show your support for new videos by several Australian artists or singers who recently have performed here. CMT.com’s
Pure 12-Pack Countdown  presents a list of video links each week from Friday to Wednesday allowing you to pick up to twelve favorites each time you vote. This week’s list includes Keith Urban, The Greencards, Fred Eaglesmith, Dale Watson, Jim Lauderdale and Elizabeth Cook who co-wrote “Sometimes It Takes Balls to be a Woman” with Melinda Schneider. So please visit the link above to vote ..... and to vote often!!
The Greencards new video on CMT.com
The Greencards video "Waiting on the night" from their new, chart-topping CD Viridian is featured in this week's "CMT Loaded" rotation on the US Country Music Television network's web site: http://www.cmt.com/loaded/player.jhtml?id=1556581 (use of the Internet Explorer browser is required) - click on the video to see it in full screen mode. Also in this week's rotation is Miranda Lambert, Little Texas and Elizabeth Cook who performs "Sometimes it takes balls to be a women" which she co-wrote with Melinda Schneider. You can also find the "Waiting on the night" video by going http://CMT.com and entering "The Greencards" in the search field. For those using a different browser, the video can be viewed at  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cxfib782N0A
VIRIDIAN Release Show in Nashville 3/24
It was an honour for The Greencards to have Gillian Welch and Dave
Rawlings come and join them for a couple of
songs at the release party at The Belcourt Theatre.
They were also joined for an encore by the female string band Uncle Earl.
If you want to learn more about Uncle Earl, check out these video clips from the BBC
Eamon's Journal
If you have a fancy for Sailors and live music then you should be sat here with me in Annapolis. Home to both The Ramshead and a Naval Academy, these streets should be lined with stumbling sea farers arm-in-arm with women named Molly or Rosie – at least if folk songs are to be believed. The reality is substantially more serene; cute little shops, coffee shops and boutique stores create a relaxed atmosphere. The venue itself is a great listening room and one of the finest venues in the northeast. We’ve performed here on our own and with people like Tony Rice and The Avett Brothers, and we all look forward to performing. We also get to stay at the luxurious Loews Hotel where the pampering is far above our normal Super 8 standard – all in all this is a happy band!

The first few days of this trip were hectic due to a private show in Chicago that involved flying in and out the same day. Logistically it was a bit of a nightmare, but with outstanding efforts from Andrew Falco (our guitarist), and our great new friend Andy Rubin we were able to complete our schedule without any disasters! We stayed at Andy Rubin’s house in downtown Baltimore (a literal stones throw from the Orioles Stadium), and he took us out for our first Korean culinary experience which involved eating a lot of pickled cabbage. All of which was on the eve of him opening his brand new bookstore-coffee shop – in fact he dropped us off at midnight, then walked to his store to price the entire catalogue of books!

Andy may appear like a sedate and relaxed chap but his schedule is far from it. He left behind the dizzy heights of Oklahoma TV News to sell specialised baseball books, open his own bookstore, co-own a glass-blowing factory and recently got involved with a Nashville record label. During all of which he manages to smile more than most people I’ve ever met! Leading me to the conclusion he is either a top-notch guy or completely batty - definitely the former!

Our two-week run takes us to New York City again where I will no doubt express (again) my unflinching desire to move to the Big Apple - you’ve heard it all before… In the more immediate future, we have a show with Sam Bush coming up so I had better go and practise my fiddle playing. Sam is such an energetic and rhythmic player; I can’t wait to see him.
Hope to see you at a show,
The Greencards Make History
Our new CD, Viridian, was #1 on the Billboard Bluegrass Albums chart last week. Billboard called us to let us know that we are the first international act ever to top that chart. It gives us a chance to say thanks to you, our most loyal fans, for providing the support that was so important in making that happen. 
Being the first international act .... This makes them the first Australian act too!!
Listen to The Greencards sing Slim Dusty's song "Camooweal"
on the Grand Ole Opry Archives http://www.wsmonline.com/onair/archives.shtml 
Click on "Friday Night Opry." March 23rd.   After the program begins to play, pull the
progress bar to the right until the 46 minute mark is reached and then
release. You should hear Little Jimmy Dickens tell a joke and then
introduce the band.
Spring Has Sprung!
Friends and Fans alike,
Hello to you wherever you are from yours truly here in sunny Nashville, where spring has been bypassed in favour of an early summer. The trees are full again and the butterflies are fluttering all around. We are enjoying one more week of hanging low in Music City, before heading out again on another tour which this time takes us back to New York city and many other venues in the eastern part of the US; looks like a fun tour!

Our album release tour culminated in a double bill show with Uncle Earl at The Belcourt Theatre in Nashville. We played to a packed house and were joined on the encore by all the ‘Earl Girls’ and special guests Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings! We weren’t expecting Gillian and Dave at all, and it turns out they had been hanging with Uncle Earl backstage unbeknownst to us. It made for a fantastic climax to the night as I stood beside Rayna and Laura for a death by triple fiddles extravaganza – now that’s what I call music! 
www.myspace.com/uncleearl    Laura: www.myspace.com/lauracortese

All in all, the album release fanfare was very successful and eclipsed our ambitions. After playing three sold-out shows in Austin and Houston, the album placed in the Top 5 Folk downloads on iTunes, hit Number 2 at eMusic, and rocketed to Number 1 on the Billboard Bluegrass Charts!! Not bad for a bunch of foreign reprobates – in fact, we are officially the only foreigners to have reached the top-spot, EVER! Surely that deserves a cookie?!

This is the season for new music and lots of our friends have music scheduled for release in the upcoming months. I’d be interested to know what new music you guys have been enjoying, it’s always good to get recommendations – and since ye are (I presume) fans of our music I will certainly take on board your suggestions… I have not found much in the new release section to flip out over, and instead looked back in the catalogue rather than forward. Rather predictably I have uncovered two great Paul McCartney albums – ‘McCartney’ and ‘Ram’, currently on constant rotation in my house! Have you ever heard ‘Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey’? Or ‘Junk’? If you ain’t, then I suggest you shell out the cash and add them to your collection – classic records!
We’ll be back on the road again in no time at all and hope to see ye at a show; there are some really fun venues (and a show with Kym’s hero Sam Bush!) on this trip so try and catch us if you can!
Take care now,
The Greencards' Viridian CD Hits #1 on the US Billboard.com Bluegrass Chart
March 23, 2007 NASHVILLE: In addition to maintaining a top position on the Americana Music Association's radio play charts (#4 for week of Mar 19), The Greencards' brand new CD "Viridian" has garnered the Number 1 spot on this week's Billboard.com's Top Bluegrass Albums chart as compiled by the Nielsen market research firm.

The Greencards are in good company sitting above bands like Nickel Creek, Cherryholmes, Ricky Skaggs, Rhonda Vincent and Ralph Stanley.
This ranking came on the eve of The Greencards' third appearance on the Grand Ole Opry tonight where they sang "Camooweal" in tribute to Slim Dusty. Replays of the the Friday Night Opry can be heard at http://www.wsmonline.com/onair/archives.shtml  . The Greencards appeared in the second 30 minute segment of the show along with Little Jimmy Dickens and The Whites.
Bill Aldacushion
Viridian went to # 1 on the Billboard Bluegrass Charts
The Greencards' new album, Viridian went to # 1 on the Billboard Bluegrass Charts this week. This is a first for the band having had Weather and Water reach the # 3 position in 2005.
This weekend in Nashville TN, Kym, Carol and Eamon will celebrate with a Friday night appearance at The Grand Ole Opry and the release party at The Belcourt Theatre on Saturday night.
Friday Night Opry can be heard at
The Greencards latest CD Viridian is charting very well
even before its official release date (up to #3 this week) on the Americana Music Associations' Radio Play Chart  http://www.americanaradio.org/ama/displaychart_beforetracks.asp?mode=lw&dtkey=  amongst an impressive list of artists including Patty Griffin, Eric Clapton, Norah Jones, Willie Nelson, Nanci Griffith, Guy Clark, Bob Dylan and others. The band is playing through Oregon and California on the way to several special CD release shows in Texas starting March 6.
To win a free mandolin, an iPod and other cool prizes and to learn more
about the  "Tell A Friend" campaign      click here
How Coming Full Circle Can Sometimes Take You To An Entirely New Place.
Ten years ago I played The Star Bar in Atlanta for the first time in my life - after a giddy post-gig celebra-tion most of the guys in the band ended up getting tattoos in questionable places. The same ink parlour is still open today, and I glanced in the window as we drove past it on Saturday afternoon. I thought of all the water under the bridge since then, thousands of shows, and too many notes worth remembering – af-ter all that, here were The Greencards in Atlanta per-forming at The Variety Playhouse with master guitar-ist Tommy Emmanuel
www.tommyemmanuel.com  . All those miles may have brought be back to the same spot, but my, how the scenery has changed!

Tommy is the king of Winfield Festival in Kansas, and that’s where we first met him last year. His gen-erosity, energy and spirit create an undeniable musi-cal presence – each string on his guitar makes as much music in one night as the average musician. Together we sold-out the Variety’s 700+ seat, and af-ter performing individual sets, we joined Tommy on-stage for ‘I Saw The Light’ and a Bill Monroe tune called ‘Old Dangerfield’. We were all buzzing with the energy we created and afterwards many folks in the audience told us they thought it was an incredible show. I hope we’ll get to play with Tommy again; it was an excellent evening!

Yesterday we opened our road-trip account for 2007 in fine style by leaving Atlanta and heading to Boise, Idaho – all of 2200 miles! Sat here on the back seat of the van with my computer on my lap, we are just over halfway to our destination. Lifting my head oc-casionally to stare at the flat and frosty landscape that is Nebraska in winter, I can find only the incentive to turn my thoughts back to this journal. Trans-Continental journeys like this used to freak me out, but perhaps now because we are so fresh into the year I have now come to see this time as highway purga-tory – you just have to sit your time out. We pass the time listening to new music – Carol has brought the latest efforts from Norah Jones and Patty Griffin, both fantastic! I haven’t really done any music shop-ping this year and I am still waiting for my first great-unexpected discovery of the year. With the wealth of new releases due in the upcoming months I’m sure it won’t be too long.

While the ears are a little under utilised so far this year, the eyes have been devouring some great writ-ing! ‘Oliver Twist’ by Charles Dickens is a classic for good reasons, and I have made it my mission this year to read some of the great British author’s work. Dickens has scared me for years, and though I knew the various film versions of ‘Scrooge www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hv5W6sKepYg

’  and the musi-cal ‘Oliver’ www.amazon.com  , I had never been able to get past the first twenty pages of David Copperfield or Nicolas Nick-leby. So, I went with the familiar Twist and entered the streets of Victorian London to meet such charac-ters as the Artful Dodger, nasty villain Bill Sykes, Mr. Grimwig and of course the innocent Oliver www.youtube.com/watch?v=Orwgm5_nKc8&mode=related&search=  him-self.
Such great names for such vividly drawn charac-ters have lived on for years in our vocabulary but I won’t pretend that Dickens is for everyone. If you can find a good in-road like ‘Oliver Twist’ and adjust to a different reading pace then you will find beauti-ful and fantastic treasures. You may well find your-self asking for more…

There are still no rolling hills outside my window, and the flatness of mile-marker 232 looks remarkably similar to that of mile-marker 252… Still, we have great shows to look forward to on this trip including Texas, California and Wintergrass in Tacoma, Wash-ington for the first time. Carol just informed us there is a Hawaiian style party with The Infamous String-dusters
and Uncle Earl www.Uncleearl.net– Uncle Duster! Should be great fun!! I’ll have to improvise with the costume…

It might be stating the obvious, but it’s a long way from Atlanta to Tacoma – thousands of miles and al-most ten years for me. We only get to enjoy our des-tination for a couple of days before heading down through Oregon, California and our old home Texas. So I guess it’s true that some journeys really do come full circle – but thankfully in this business they never stay there for very long.
Eamon's Journal -February 2007
As the clock ticked down to show time of our first gig of the year, every member of the band retired to a different corner and frantically rehearsed their most troublesome part of a brand new show. It brought me back to the time I took my A-Level University entrance exams at the age of 17: a normally jovial bus journey was replaced by a nail biting ride; students could be found anxiously clutching their notes trying to learn that last piece of information that could get them the result they needed to enter University. But when your anxiety level is so high, it’s very difficult to digest any new information – as the student realises this, so rises the anxiety level, creating an awful Catch-22 situation…There’s not much you can do at this point but rely on your preparation.

Last night was not a University entrance exam, but it was the culmination of writing and recording a new record, weeks of intensive rehearsal and individual preparation. We are entering a solid two months of touring in support of our new record ‘Viridian’, and that means new songs, new set and new gags! We are all enjoying the challenge of keeping everything at the high standards we expect from ourselves.

That’s not to say we didn’t have some scary moments last night; at times I was staring horridly in the face of embarrassment. I hit a screamer of a bum note during Carol’s rendition of ‘Waitin’ On The Night’ (for fellow fiddlers out there, it was a shift from first to fifth position – I’m still slightly scared of it!). Kym and I played a new instrumental slightly faster than we were both comfortable with but managed to get through it. To top it all off, amid switching back and forth between stringed instruments in the second set, I stepped back too far and almost did a double backwards somersault over a chair I had forgot was there! Somehow I kept my balance, but I don’t recommend doing this in front of 200 people…

We shall continue on our quest for a great new show, and after only two shows it feels like we are close to having it all together. We can’t wait to visit all the towns on our tour schedule – we are going everywhere between New York, Texas and California! Be sure to look at our tour page to see when we will be close to you. Right now I am off to eat dinner, watch some of the Super Bowl and catch Prince in the half time slot!
Take care,
Ambitions and Goals.
If you are reading this, then you have obviously noticed the new website that surrounds this journal. Gone are the last vestiges of Weather and Water, replaced by colours of the new era – Viridian. It’s a smashing website with lots of new features and new photos. Have you checked out the new music yet? Go on, don’t be afraid…

Theme of the month has to be ‘refresh’. We’ve been rehearsing all week, preparing new songs by throwing out the old and ushering in the new. It’s a little daunting since we had a lot of staples in the set we knew really well - but we have to make room for the new young upstart songs from ‘Viridian’. You’ll have to see the show to find out which oldies are still in favour – don’t worry though, we still have your favourite songs in the set (I’m talking specifically about your favourite song, not the thousands of other people who read this page, honest…). Truthfully though, it is really exciting and musically we are buzzing with the challenge!

Next week we start rehearsing with our new guitar player – David Grier. Dave has his own career as a unique and unstoppable force in the guitar world - I remember buying his first record “Freewheeling” when I lived in England, and was blown away by his version of ‘Alabama Jubilee’. Dave can play anything he desires and has an enviable imagination – I can see I’ll be doing a lot more practising this year just to keep my head above water.

My list of objectives this year includes a bunch of fiddle material that I want to learn, so having Mr. Grier will definitely feed the fire for knowledge. My resolve is still holding up my other resolutions – more swimming and healthier eating. I’ve been at the YMCA (not the camp 70’s disco band) doing my stuff, and cooking lots of healthy food at home. Living on the road as we do, I eat at restaurants more than any man needs to. Steaming my own vegetables, preparing fresh salmon, and sitting down to my own concoction is a divine pleasure in my life - unlike eating at one of the many chain restaurants that adorn America’s highway system…

I cannot leave this journal without bringing up the subject of soccer. The hot topic on everyone’s lips is the impending U.S. arrival of David Beckham and Victoria Beckham – in a five-year deal with L.A. Galaxy worth over $275 million!! My compatriots in the UK have given Becks an incredible drubbing for his Stateside ambitions, but at $1 million a week, he’d have been crazy not to. How does all this relate to The Greencards? I am considering taking part in the open try-outs the LA team is holding, hoping my latent football talents will blossom in a series of events that will see me playing alongside Becks in the Home Depot Stadium. I can see it now: “ McLoughlin plays a beautiful ball to Beckham who returns with a cheeky one-two, playing McLoughlin into the box with the only the keeper to beat. The crowd thinks it’s all over – it is now! A thunderbolt of a shot into the top left corner as Macca and Becks celebrate their new dynamic partnership!” Folks, you may never see me onstage again…

Happy dreams,

The New Year
Happy New Year to you, my faithful readers! No doubt your Christmas was fun filled and packed with festive cheer. I am writing from a very English lounge, in the very English seaside town of Brighton, East Sussex. It’s only 4pm but the sun is rapidly declining and the cold wind is blowing in from the ocean. I am a long way from Nashville, and to be honest I am looking forward to returning to the Country metropolis and seeing all my friends again.

I arrived in England on New Years Day and have since played a few shows with my old Brighton friends, performing country and Americana music, would you believe? These January reunions have become somewhat of a tradition in the Brighton music scene and I love starting the year this way – playing swing and honky-tonk songs to large groups of very grateful folks.

Christmas is a very important family holiday in our house, and all four ‘kids’ made the trek back to the small town of Swinford in County Mayo, Ireland. Of course, none of us are kids anymore – two are married (brought their partners along) and one is engaged. My sister also brought her 11-month-old son, Jonathan, to his first Irish Christmas and he was undoubtedly the star of the show. This little tear-away smiles more than any human I’ve ever seen and can crawl across a room at a top speed of over 30 mph – not a joke, this kid is fast!

As usual I drank far too many pints of Guinness – but I blame it on the little pub ‘Melletts’ which serves what I believe to be the best pint in the world. If you don’t believe me I’ll give you directions and you can taste if for yourself… Christmas time never seems like the time to be overly self-concerned and self-conscious. It is more about being concerned with how many pounds of roast Turkey one can eat (or To-Furkey for all you veggies out there…) I also could not afford to insult my mother who cooks what may be the best roast spuds I’ve ever eaten. Oh, what a selfless character I can be sometimes…

Some of you may be living your life according to your New Year Resolutions. As it stands, I have only resolved to have some resolutions by next week – I hope I can at least keep that one. If I can’t, there may be little hope for any other ambitions… Check back here next week to see how it’s going.
Happy New Year to ye all! Auld Lang Syne should be reverberating all around cyberspace at this minute.
Bottoms up, and here’s to new beginnings!
Bye now,
Thank Evans For That!
This band has a bad track record when it comes to driving in the snow – so when we left Nashville late Thursday night in the middle of a storm I was having flashbacks of that awful night last December. Driving towards Chicago, the wind was blowing so hard it really didn’t matter if I was steering the van or not; we were being blown all over the road, and on wet tarmac this was enough to make my heart jumpy. To avoid catastrophe, we grabbed a hotel an hour outside of Louisville and rested till morning.

We were booked to open the first of two shows for Sara Evans in Merrillville Indiana, and simply getting there was proving to be the hardest part. Kym took the wheel in the morning as we skirted around Indianapolis into even colder conditions. Traffic slowed down as the wind picked up, and it seemed only a matter of time before accidents would happen. There are many terrible things you can see on the sides of highways, but an upturned semi-trailer in the median is a sight that will take anyone’s breath away. The truck had its contents strewn everywhere, and while it seemed the driver had walked away, it reminded everyone on the road that there really was no guarantee we would make it to our destination.

All told, we passed three upturned semis on the road that morning. Skid marks and tracks in snow were all that told of a futile struggle against the power of Mother Nature – mankind must never forget its place. There were times when it seemed we would meet the same fate as our elongated friends, but our cautious approach served us well and we pulled into town at around 3pm.

As we loaded in our gear, we learned that Sara Evans and company had not been so fortunate. Travelling from Kansas, they were stuck behind two upturned semis on the freeway! Traffic had backed up over 50 miles, they had been sat on the tarmac for at least four hours, and they still had over three hours of good driving time to go – nobody knew if the show was even going to happen. Having gone to all this effort to get there, we would have been really gutted if they had to cancel the show. All we could do was sit in our dressing room, play a few tunes, and wait for the word from the top.

They say it’s who(m) you know, and this night certainly proved that to be true. The Illinois State Highway Patrol gave the Sara Evans convoy a police escort through the mess on the freeway, allowing them a chance to get to the venue. The show was pushed back half an hour, and as we went on for our opening set, the crew had just over one hour to set their show without making a single noise behind the black curtain. The audience of course had no idea, but behind us, there were men and women running around like headless chickens, racing against the clock; doing in one hour what they would normally do in three. Fair play to the crew though, I never heard one single noise and by the time we finished our set there was a whole new band set up behind the curtain and an atmosphere of calm and tranquillity pervaded all.

There were even more surprises in store as we learned that Sara’s extra special guest that night was none other than Jerry Springer! By all accounts, they have become friends on “Dancing With The Stars”, and Jerry decided to drop in as Sara was on his home patch.

I have to admit no one else seemed to be quite as happy as I was with this news, and a few people giggled as I set off to shake the hand of Jerry Springer. How could I not? This is Jerry Springer! The God-Father of reality TV; he has single-handedly cast a magnifying glass on human nature’s narcissistic tendencies as people humiliate themselves in order to get their fifteen minutes of fame. At the same time Mr Springer has created a form of post-modern theatrical masterpiece. Granted, you may not agree, and I imagine I may have one or two people who write in and castigate for my views. But I will wave my Jerry Springer flag any day of the week. Did you know there is a highly successful musical in London’s West End called “Springer” which puts a fictional Jerry Springer episode to opera? Can I use the term Television genius? I think it is highly deserved (my tongue is ever so slightly in my cheek as I write this, friends…).

Jerry turned out to be a lovely chap (born in London he told me!), and I’ll proudly show his autograph to anyone who wants to see it. By the time we turned in that night we were exhausted from the on-off stress of the day. The wind shrieked and howled as I closed my hotel door and blocked out the day’s anxieties. It was time for a well-deserved rest!
So, until next time, take care of yourselves - and each other!
Ties That Bind
My brother and I have always been close, and there are a lot of similarities between us: We listened to a lot of the same music growing up, we think George Jones is a better singer than Merle Haggard, we love the steel playing on Randy Travis records, we both like to think we have the gift of the gab, and perhaps more importantly we are both Arsenal fans
www.Arsenal.com   This fact may be lost on many U.S. readers, but I can assure you that a rivalry in the soccer department can destroy many a kinship, while the union of our support for The Gunners creates a tighter bond than blood itself (slight exaggeration!). Our sisters look upon it with a sort of condescension that at times borders on pity, but still, we continue to fly the flag and I doubt that will ever change. We only meet up once or twice a year, and last weekend I took a trip to Branson Missouri to share a pint with him and discuss the latest football results…

Ray (five years my big brother) has been living in Ireland as a professional musician for over 15 years. As the piano player for the Irish artist Daniel O’Donnell
www.daniel-site.com  , he has travelled all over the world and performed in venues such as The Point in Dublin, and The Royal Albert Hall. Twice a year they come to the States and this was the first time I was able to visit them, in Branson Missouri, where they have a month-long residency at the Tri-Lakes Theatre.

It’s a long drive from Nashville, so I rented a black Mustang convertible and decided to take a road trip on my own. Feeling very empowered by the twelve million horsepower beneath the bonnet, I popped in my CD of Squeeze
www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/squeeze and floored it! I must have knocked a whole hour off the 8 and a half hour drive – not because I was speeding, it just corners really well…

Branson is renowned for its collection of theatres and having never been before I really didn’t know what to expect. It offers an endless avenue of concerts and shows – everything from Beatles tribute shows to Eastern magic shows. There are also endless coaches bringing people from all over the world to this strip. We didn’t get to see any shows ourselves but we managed to visit quite a few bars and pubs, allowing us to catch up on all the gossip in each other’s lives.

Every time my brother and I sit down for a pint and a chat, we seem to remind each other of things in our childhood that we can only remember when we are sitting together and chatting – anything from TV shows like
 ‘Chorlton And The Wheelies’  www.youtube.com/watch?v=iPUt5PV9EQ0
, to funny characters we used to encounter playing in our Dad’s band – like the old man in Tilbury who threw a fit if anyone brought chips into his club. I believe they call this collective memory: recall is better when two or more people are asked to recall together a particular memory; when on your own, your recall proves less effective. Family get-togethers are great for this, and we often find ourselves howling with laughter over somebody’s impersonation of a long forgotten character. Similarly, we are all reminded of embarrassing moments from our youth, designed to knock you off your perch a little and bring you back down to earth; it usually has the desired effect!

Family time is a precious thing in this world, and as everyone prepares to cook their Thanksgiving turkey, I hope we all appreciate time spent in the company of people we care about. Thanksgiving is another uniquely American experience, and it’s lovely to see families and friends celebrating this all-inclusive holiday. You don’t have to be of any religion to celebrate this holiday; you just have to want to give thanks for where you are in your life. I think we can all find something, even on our worst days.

For the rest of my family, tomorrow is just an ordinary day – they don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in Europe. But I’ll be sure to give my brother a call up in Branson, find out if he has eaten any turkey and no doubt discuss the upcoming football games this weekend. It’s nice to know there are some things in this world you can count on.
Happy Thanksgiving,
Eamon's Journal -Leaving The Harbour
November 11
There’s an old sailor’s superstition that it’s bad luck to begin your voyage on a Friday - to do so will bring peril and danger to your ship. Adhering to this principle, the good ship ‘Greencards’ left its Nashville harbour on Saturday morning for a short trip up to Illinois and Ann Arbor, Michigan. We were scheduled to play in Macomb for a Public Radio show, and at the Ark - one of our favourite venues in the U.S. For those of you interested in how we live our life on the choppy high seas of Entertainment - fleeing the storms of economy, relishing the sail-bolstering winds of packed houses – this is a blow-by-blow account of one day on the road. Read on my inquisitive friends…

5:45am – Alarm goes off, is quickly hit by my fist and shoved under the pillow. I became a musician specifically to avoid this kind of abject torture.

6:00am – Wake up with a start, realising I have overslept and the van will be pulling in the driveway in fifteen minutes! I shriek in a manner that resembles Munch’s ‘Scream’ painting. Luckily, last night I packed and I’m fully prepared. Wash my face, brush my teeth, don my woolly hat and drag my suitcase downstairs. It’s cold and dark, feels like England. Brrrr…!

6:15am – Kym and Carol arrive in the white van that is all too familiar to me – I’m on intimate terms with every inch of this vehicle. No sign of our guitar player Andy Falco yet, but a quick phone call tells us he’s just around the corner, and can’t find my street. Within a minute or two we see him pulling into the driveway. There’s a light load on the van since we’ll only be gone four days. We shut the back doors after loading our gear and we’re on the road by 6:25am – ten minutes behind schedule, but nobody’s panicking. That’s how professional we are folks…

9:30am – Kym successfully drove the first shift while we all slept and probably snored. Our journey has taken us west on I-24 for roughly 200 miles, now it’s time for me to take the wheel. Nothing exciting to report here, just miles and miles of interstate. I tune into the BBC World Service to follow Saturday’s football matches, and settle into my driving shift.

1:45pm – I missed a turn somewhere north of St. Louis, so we spend half an hour doing U-turns, checking our maps and getting directions from a policeman. Finally we get back to where we should have taken a right instead of carrying on straight – frustrating, but we are back on track. I drive for another 45 minutes before handing the wheel over to Carol. Time to put on the headphones and listen to some music – aaahh! Listened to the Ricky Gervais podcasts, which feature the hilarious mind of idiot savant Karl Pilkington; click on the link to check it out in iTunes. Brilliant stuff!

4:00pm – After taking a nice kip in the van, we picked up our hotel keys and quickly drove to the venue. It’s an unassuming little space, tucked in behind a pizza joint. Nice inside though, and we load in our equipment. Unfortunately, sound check takes the best part of two hours; we spend a lot of the time getting electric shocks and we have to put windsocks on the microphones, which seems to cure the grounding problems. It is past 6pm by the time we finish so there is no time to eat dinner – show time is 7pm, so just have to drink some coffee and get on with it. Oh, the demanding rigours of show business!

11.00pm – The end of the day has finally arrived; I took a shower once I got back to the hotel and now lie in bed listening to The Wallflowers on the telly. The show was really fun, about 100 people crammed into this small room, all ready to be entertained. The band seemed really energised after two weeks off, and I could really feel the benefit of time at home spent practising. We met a lot of the folks in the lobby afterwards and there were some really nice people, many of whom drove hours to be there. We were all tired by the end but we had fun, seems like the audience did too!

Before I switch off the lights I resolve to go for a run in the morning, but it’s so bleedin’ cold out there that I may lose my courage in the morning. It’s been a long day so I am going to turn in now – hope you enjoyed this little blog, see you at a show somewhere.

Scaling Your Fears
Eamon's Jounal - November 6, 2006
Nashville is not normally the kind of town where I expect to find people in drag walking in and out of bars, but Halloween was quite out of the ordinary. Freakish outfits, cross-dressing and gay Elvis impersonators seemed to be the norm. This certainly adds a touch of irony to hanging out at The Station Inn, the great mother-church of bluegrass music… Halloween is a huge holiday this side of the pond, and I have to admit I can never truly enter the spirit of the day, whereas many of the natives (!) here regard it as one of their favourite holidays. Halloween in my house in the U.K. involved a few ducking apples, an apple on a string that would knock your two front teeth out if you weren’t careful, and the odd trick-or-treater – to which my Dad always demanded they sing a Christmas Carol before they got any sweets. I guess it’s the fact that adults are so fascinated by Halloween in the US that I find so interesting – I love to watch it, I love the costumes, I love the parties, but I will always be an observer and not a participant. So, Tuesday night, I put on my best blue jeans and headed out into the night to explore the occult…
The Station Inn was the hot spot in town: The Infamous Stringdusters, a fantastic young bluegrass band, let it be known they were dressing as their heroes, and the cast assembled thus:
Jesse (mandolin) – Sam Bush
Chris (Guitar) – Tony Rice
Jeremy (Fiddle) – Stuart Duncan
Travis (Bass) – Kenny Rogers
Andy (Dobro) – Jerry Douglas
Chris (Banjo) – Bela Fleck

The wild card was definitely Kenny Rogers on bass, and truth be known he looked pretty good with his grey hair and Father Christmas beard. The Stringdusters kicked off the set with a few tunes from the classic Bela Fleck album “Drive”, and the lads tore it up with some great solos. The show stealer surely had to be Kenny Rogers however, who stole our hearts with his aching rendition of The Gambler. Who needs the correct lyrics when the singer has such heart and soul? We all felt the pain of that gambling man, and the audience roared back: “When to hold ‘em!” Oh, to stand in the presence of greatness is a humbling thing… We all retired to a party in west Nashville, enjoying this freakish holiday, and admiring everyone’s costumes. By four in the morning we were still picking and grinning, and to be honest I think some of the playing and singing became just as scary by the end!

Moving on to more mundane developments, my challenge for the rest of the year has been to quit smoking – I have been choking down the tobacco sticks for the best part of the year now. But I smoked my last one in Florida, so that means I have now been smoke-free for over two weeks. It has been fairly easy I am happy to say, even though the real test will come in a few weeks or so when temptation hits hard and you feel you can afford a cheeky toke because you “don’t smoke” anymore.

So I have kept my mind (and stomach) off the great discovery of Sir Walter Raleigh by exercising. It is such a great thrill to run around East Nashville after being stuck in a van for the best part of a year. I also discovered rock climbing – there’s an indoor facility here and my friend took me after raving about it for months. Having no experience of this sport, I was very nervous to don the harness and clip on the safety rope. First task was to ‘belay’ my friend Michael as he scaled the 40 feet wall – basically I had to take the slack off the safety rope as he ascended. It looked easy and fun, so we swapped places and I began to climb. My mistake was looking down when I got into a tricky spot about 20 feet in the air – my bottle smashed completely and I froze stiff! I could no longer move any of my limbs… “ I can’t move!” I shouted down, much to Mike’s amusement: “ Okay, just let go and come down”. Now this proved even harder as I had to overcome my instinctual feeling that jumping off a wall 25 feet off the ground is not the safest thing in the world to do. After realising there was no other way, I simply let go and slowly descended to the safety of the ground. My heart pounded and the adrenaline rushed throughout my system. But I wasn’t prepared to give up…

With the encouragement of climber extraordinaire Mike, I took to the wall once more, determined to reach the top. 30 feet up it seemed I had become stuck once more, but I somehow figured out the right foot hold to take me to the top. Putting my hand on the top of the wall was a fantastic thrill, and I took a deep breath as I descended! I was completely out of breath when I hit the ground and the excitement was so overwhelming I couldn’t speak! In fact my arms were throbbing and aching to the point that I couldn’t even unclip myself! I needed a breather after that!

So I am off to climb this weekend as well, hoping I will be more confident and able to scale a few more walls. I don’t think I will be able to incorporate this skill into my musical career, but for now I am going to enjoy the challenge.
Take care, and stay in touch!
Hard to Believe
Mag Fest
Nashville in autumn

The trees in Nashville are shedding their leaves, suffocating the green lawns in my street on the East side. The cold winds are blowing this morning, and there is no doubt that winter we will soon be with us when the temperance of autumn fades. I flicked the switch on my heater yesterday for the first time in months and it shuddered into life, groaning and aching as it slowly warmed the living room. For the first time in what feels like years, the band is off the road for essentially three months; we have some selected shows in Michigan and West Virginia, but for a touring-crazy band like ourselves it is hardly a dip in the pool. Time to actually ‘live’ in Nashville and settle into the community a little more, what a concept!

Our October tour was a great run; we covered the distance between here and New York City, and as far south as Florida. We were lucky enough to play the much loved MagFest, which being in Florida, takes place in what feels like mid-summer heat and humidity. I forced myself to run in the afternoons, and came back to the hotel drenched from the sweltering humidity; felt like running in a sauna! The line-up for the festival was a mix of Americana, folk, and a touch of reggae thrown in for good measure. Our friends The Duhks were on hand to get the party in full swing, playing great tunes with tremendous energy and soulful songs from the ever-impressive Jessie. They are somewhat regulars there and it was really nice to hang with them and share some road stories!

The defining moment of my festival experience came right before our set. We had loaded all our gear backstage with ample time to spare, so we had time to listen to the band before us. The schedule declared them to be “Bluegrasstafari” – a mix of reggae and grass (no bad jokes here people…). This lively crew from Jamaica was made up of about 7 or 8 people (never got a reliable head count), - singers, guitarists, percussionist and a banjo player who had his head in both reggae and bluegrass. I stood close to the stage and felt their groove and spirit – it was all about fun, heart and moving the body. Incredibly infectious, the whole audience was up on their feet in a trance, grooving to the beat. It really opened me up to the spirit of the festival, making it clear that we were all here to enjoy each other’s company. Our set went really well and the crowd was lively when they needed to be, and pin-drop silent on the ballads – I have no doubt that our performance and their reaction all owed a great deal to Bluegrasstafari. I need to see those guys play more often…

Now as I write from my favourite coffee shop in Nashville (Bongo Java East), I can’t fully grasp the lightness of our schedule for the rest of the year. I spent the first day celebrating with friends, and this week managed to catch up on a lot of errands and practising that I needed to. I have a recording session today for a fantastic artist called Garisson Starr, a powerful singer/songwriter living here in Nashville. So I had better head home and play a few scales before I head into the studio.

I promise I’ll keep writing even though we are off the road, though not sure what I’ll be telling you about…might have to switch it up a little! Keep checkin’ in!

October 13, 2006
New York Nights
We now have an established routine when we play in New York City: stay at our hotel in New Jersey, drive through the tunnel, get to Manhattan and immediately FREAK OUT! There’s nothing quite like your first minute on the island; your eyes instantly notice a change in the fashion, people look very striking and I have to say it, incredibly good-looking! You can feel the buzz in the air, people darting in all directions, moving very quickly. Usually within the first five minutes we all declare that we are moving to the City, right to the heart of it all. About five hours later we concede that we couldn’t even afford one month’s rent here…

New Jersey gets a bad rap from some, but it’s a great place for us whenever we need affordable accommodation close to the city. We pulled in after a long nine-hour drive up from North Carolina, the last two hours of which was absolute highway madness; cars careering from lane to lane and overtaking all around you. As a driver you have to realise you must get a little mean and stake your claim on the tarmac – otherwise you become a liability for being too slow and cumbersome on the road. As luck would have it, we had local boy Andy Falco playing guitar with us, born in St. Vincent’s Hospital right in Manhattan. Andy, or ‘The Falcon’ as we like to call him, has a wonderful Long Island accent just like something from The Sopranos, and looks remarkably like Adam Sandler. The Falcon regularly plays with Alecia Nugent who records for Rounder Records; we were lucky enough to nab him when he had a hole in his schedule – thanks Falcon, it was great!

I felt a rush of adrenaline as we pulled out of the hotel and headed towards the Holland Tunnel. This was our first time to not use the Lincoln Tunnel right beside our hotel. It seemed to make better sense to head south in New Jersey, and then emerge in the city closer to where we needed to be. Truth be told, the journey turned out to be a piece of cake, and we turned onto Lafayette Street just half an hour later stopping outside Joe’s Pub all happy with ourselves!
We loaded in the equipment and as we were early I went for a walk to see what was around us. On the other side of the street I could see the impressive Astor Theatre, home of the Blue Man Group, an incredibly successful stage production. The Falcon’s Mum was on hand to explain to me that this impressive pillared structure had once belonged to Jacob Astor, who went down on the Titanic many years ago. A multi millionaire who donated much to New York City, his legacy lives on today. I could see Greenwich Village to my right, and headed towards the clothes shops to my left. It might be expensive in New York, but they have great stuff!

Returning for a quick sound check, we met Liz Tormes, our co-bill for the night. Just before we went on I nipped outside to find my old friend Aileen who was coming to the show, although there was no sign of her, I did find Academy Award Winning Actor Phillip Seymour-Hoffman. You might have seen him as Truman Capote recently, or in the great independent movie ‘Happiness’. He was just hanging with some friends and looked like a regular guy – much more than a lot of folks in the City. It’s funny that we should think of famous people as anything other than regular people, but it was very grounding to see someone who has achieved such wonderful things in Art, who looked, well, just normal.

I felt slightly nervous for the show; I think it was the adrenaline that was in my system from being in the City. Regardless, we had a really fun show and a great crowd. The band played really well and we turned some of our nervous energy into music. I met some folks in the audience who seemed really appreciative of hearing this kind of music in their bustling metropolis. As Joe’s Pub emptied out and we loaded the van again, we felt the irresistible urge to explore the nightlife. The Village was within stumbling distance as stylish well-dressed people made their way to and fro. But we know better than to leave our van somewhere while we went partying, especially in New York City… So, Kym and I jumped in the van and raced toward the Holland Tunnel, fully adopting the Manhattan code of driving – ‘Get out of my way you bleeping bleep!’ Sat behind the wheel, I quickly discovered the secret to driving there is a mix of fearlessness, confidence and obnoxiousness. It’s 'do or die' out there folks, and I make no apologies if you were one of the cars that blew your horn out of me. It was me or you I’m afraid…

All the gear was safely put away in the hotel room within 35 minutes, and a taxi arrived shortly after to take us into the city. We must have hailed the only taxi driver in the vicinity with absolutely no idea of where he was going in the city. We had to direct him once we left the Tunnel – it was like the blind leading the blind. Luckily our memory was better than his knowledge, made it back to the Village after just an hour, and found Carol and The Falcon safely ensconced in Bull McCabe’s Irish Bar. My old friends from Austin, Wendy and Aileen also came along and we all sat outside with a pint and took in the atmosphere. Once again declaring our ambitions to live in Manhattan, we watched people of all race and creed walk up and down the street and wandered how they could all afford to live here. Of course, not many of them were musicians, and I guarantee you even less were fiddle players…

Our adventures that night took us uptown in search of a nightclub. We quickly found them, and left even quicker once we discovered the minimum purchase in most of them was $700! SEVEN HUNDRED DOLLARS!! Unbelievable… Instead we found a great blues bar in mid-town, befriended some people from Switzerland and NYC, and had ourselves a time! The friendliness of the city never fails to amaze me, and I love the fearless approach one has to adopt in order to survive there. I always feel like Manhattan educates and inspired me every time I dare to tread its streets.

We stumbled home so late I was afraid to look at the clock – so I didn’t, and fell into bed. Leaving the next day, I looked once again over the water at the imposing skyline of Manhattan; so close that you want to reach out and grab it with both hands. But it’s not within my grasp, though I hope someday it will be. For now, there is too much travelling to do and too many different places to visit all over the world.
Until next time,
October 6, 2006
Walking into the Renaissance Hotel in Nashville when the IBMA conference is in town reminds me of the only time I went to Mardi Gras in New Orleans – sheer energy is buzzing all around and your eyes can’t help but dart from place to place checking out all the activity. Except of course, there are no beads (and exposes) at the IBMA, but there are plenty of banjos and fiddles which can be just as shocking sometimes…The Conference Centre had been busy all day, but the activity was all in the hotel when I arrived Friday evening.

The lobby was full of people walking around on their business, but it’s not till you get to the second floor that you get a glimpse of the true nature of IBMA – musicians jam every corner in picking circles, banjos wailing and mandolins barking. Walking by you hear one group singing classic Bill Monroe, the next group playing an old Stanley Brothers instrumental, the next playing old time music and so on and so on. The bar was packed with people of all ages socialising and catching up with folks from around the country. It’s always fun to pay a visit there and find friends in other bands “stocking up” before they hit the picking scene. There I found Carol and Kym who also had his Father from Australia on holiday, Joan Kornblith from NPR’s Voice of America sat at the table looking very content and Steve McCreary from Collings Guitars. All excited to be there!

We sat there for a while, a few Irish Coffees were distributed, and we all set off to find some picking! I felt as if I was heading off into the great unknown, an adventurer finding his way in a new land. I set off on a reconnaissance mission and took the elevator to the 15th floor to see what was happening. There was plenty of picking happening but no one I recognised so I found the stairwell and went up to the next five floors to see what was occurring. With Fiddle on my back I marched through the bluegrass trenches, stepping over people already partying hard, bravely negotiating my way through picking circles in the stairwell, emerging unscathed on the 20th floor to find the Sugar Hill Suite. Happy to see folks I knew here, I embraced friends and quickly sat down in the picking circle. Steve Fishell (Emmylou’s Steel player for many years and now one of the head honchos at Sugar Hill) was to my left with his dobro, Casey Driessen creating his own rhythm section to my right, many other great banjo and guitar players were also there and I was lucky enough to be invited to play along. This was one of the best jams I’ve ever been in; the fun level was high as no one was trying to take the limelight, but the playing level was also really high so I had to really channel my best energy to fit in. Casey and I had great fun playing some twin parts and playing off each other. He’s an incredibly innovative player and creates music that always inspires me, he’s also a great guy to pick with and we had a great time sawing away!

Throughout the course of the evening the picking circle expanded and diminished as folks came and went – Tim O’Brien sang and picked his mandolin (enjoying his stature as IBMA Vocalist of the Year), by which time I had taken a break and was happy just listening to Tim. I finally bowed out at five in the morning, and went home with my head full of music – a great feeling!

It was a great honour to be asked to join three other fiddlers in the IBMA Fiddle workshop on Saturday morning – Jimmy Mattingly (The Grascals), Hunter Berry (Rhonda Vincent) and the incomparable Michael Cleveland. We answered questions from the audience and played fiddle tunes for an hour, and to be honest it was as much an education for me as it was the audience! Sitting beside Michael Cleveland is like sitting beside the railroad tracks as a juggernaut steam engine rolls by – you can only smile and watch in awe as he drives every tune with each movement of his bow. As well as traditional grassy tunes like Katy Hill, we played Red Wing, a tune from Texas that was a different flavour to everything else. After which, Michael turned to me: “Boy, you played the hell out of that one!” That made my day! Great to receive a compliment from one of my heroes, and inspires me to keep working and improving. I was very lucky to be asked to play the workshop and hopefully I’ll get the chance again someday.

Every night at the IBMA conference was like a carnival. I never left before five every morning and I was never the straggler – there was music twenty-four hours a day! Great songs were to be found on the 19th floor when Sarah Siskind wrenched everyone’s hearts apart with her amazing songs. The Infamous Stringdusters were also on hand to play some hard driving bluegrass, charging everyone with energy! Jeremy Garrett plays some mean fiddle in that band and he sings ‘real lonesome’ too. A wonderful communal atmosphere meant we all got to play whatever we wanted, wandering off and returning at will.

Standing outside the hotel at five in the morning after an incredible Saturday night/Sunday morning, I started to appreciate what an incredible event the IBMA conference is. No other place in the world that I know of can boast such an event, and just like Christmas it comes only once a year. For a second I felt like a kid who had spent all day playing with his new toy all day, wishing that everyday could be Christmas. But you know, as I woke up Sunday morning absolutely shattered, shoulders aching and banjos still playing in my head I began to be thankful that it only comes once a year. Like a parent clearing up the torn up wrapping paper from the tree, I was looking forward to a quiet day with which to reflect on the great times we all had.
Happy picking,
Standing In The Presence of Greatness
Rarely does a band get the chance to play on the same stage as their heroes, but last Saturday night we were given the honour of opening the show for Roseanne Cash. An incredible artist in her own right with many hit records behind her, Roseanne was a big hero for me growing up, her voice, instantly recognisable, can tear a hole in your heart. We played a great show with her last year in Albany NY, so we were all looking forward to getting to the venue early in River Forest IL to see her sound check; for a bunch of musicians like us it felt as if we were peeking behind the curtain to see the workings of a great machine!

Roseanne had an almost entirely different show to the one we saw last year. Gone was the acoustic flavour brought by the charismatic Larry Campbell – instead there was drummer par excellence Shawn Pelton and long-time bass player Zeb Katz. These guys have played on countless records and represent musicianship of the highest standard. The one musician in common with last year was guitarist John Leventhal. Just seeing his gear set up on stage made me smile and feel slightly nervous with anticipation. At the risk of sounding like an uber-dork, let me just run you through a partial list of records he has produced:

Kelly Willis – Kelly Willis
Shawn Colvin – Whole New You
A Few Small Repairs
These Four Walls
The Wreckers – Stand Still, Look Pretty
Marc Cohn – The Rainy Season
Roseanne Cash – 10 Song Demo
Rules of Travel
Black Cadillac

An impressive list? I would think so… Add to that list his two Grammy awards, and you might understand why I was nervous to meet him again. But as is the way with most of the greatest musicians in the world, they turn out to be some of the nicest and most humble people you could meet. Roseanne welcomed us with open arms as did John, and I have to admit feeling that if I opened my mouth I would only reveal myself to be a babbling fool. I know I shouldn’t judge her by this, but I couldn’t help but see a faint image of her father whenever I spoke to Roseanne. Not being crippled by any knowledge of John’s heritage, I quietly scampered over to his guitar collection and complimented him on the new Shawn Colvin record. Instantly warm and very open, he talked about his work and the thinking behind the direction of these labours of love. Fascinating to hear about how he and Shawn fell in love with the idea of putting fiddle on her latest record and how they simply had to have it done THAT day. I could feel their excitement and energy for their work – very inspiring!

Both he and Roseanne wished us luck as we took to the stage facing a large and very enthusiastic crowd. I made the mistake of looking into the wings after our first song and found Roseanne looking on – I literally heard my bottle smash and my steely nerve crumbled to smithereens. Let’s just say this wasn’t my best show this year; it felt like I was scrutinising every note to the point that I had no imagination. This does happen to me on occasion and it’s a horrible feeling – stage fright I guess it’s called. As we left the stage after our last song the crowd kept applauding and Roseanne and John both encouraged us to play an encore – very gracious of them. Carol seized on the opportunity of having John play guitar with us – to which he willingly obliged, playing his Collings guitar on “Bury Me Beneath the Weeping Willow”.

Dressed in a dapper suit jacket and surprisingly blue-collar shoes, John cut an impressive figure on stage and all eyes and ears were trained on him as he took the first solo. I can only describe his playing as sublime, a lesson in musicality and a master-class in how to communicate with an audience. Every member of The Greencards had grins as big as Texas, and honestly it was one of our biggest musical delights of the entire year.

Still high from this, I stood behind the sound desk as Roseanne started her show. The screen behind her played haunting video images with her poetry coming through the PA. It was very powerful, coming roughly every four or five songs it gave the whole evening a unifying theme. John played incredible the entire evening, finding little melodies that still gave the impression of space, solos that rocked yet never became unruly, leading the band with interesting arrangements and hooks that grabbed the audience by the scruff of the neck and led them inside the song itself.

I don’t like to use superlatives too often (I am British after all…), but I can honestly say that Leventhal is on of the most beautiful musicians I have ever heard, and any chance to stand in his presence is one I will jump at. I think you should too.

Putting the ‘r’ back in Americana!
We knew that we couldn’t make the Americana Awards ceremony in Nashville because we were already booked to play in Ames, Iowa. For the second year running we were nominated for the Best Emerging Artist category – having not won last year, we weren’t holding high hopes this time round. By the time we realised we had been nominated for the award we had already booked a tour and a show that night in Iowa, so we couldn’t really cancel and change our plans.

With just a glimmer of hope we took the stage in Ames - Carol brought her cell-phone with her just in case there was news from the Award Show. Realising that she couldn’t watch the phone and perform at the same time, the phone was handed to an audience member in the front row and instructions given to interrupt the show should the phone ring… Not the usual way we run our shows, but this really was a unique situation. So, there we were, playing “The Ghost of Who We Were”, approaching Kym’s mandolin solo when the audience member jumped up with her phone and handed it to Carol. The song was halted as Carol answered in anticipation… A still silence descended upon the crowd as we awaited the answer –the person at the other end simply held up the phone. Carol shook her head realising she couldn’t tell what was being said. Luckily an incoming call from our friend Lori flashed on the screen and Carol clicked over – “We Won! We Won” Everyone at our show burst into applause and gave us a standing ovation! At last, we were officially the Americana Association’s Emerging Artist of 2006!

It felt a little odd not to be there for the ceremony, but really we had no choice. Luckily for us, our favourite guitar player in the world (Bryan Sutton) was on hand to accept the award for us. Bryan has been a huge inspiration to all of us and played a big part on ‘Weather and Water’ and our forthcoming album. I’ll leave you with Bryan’s opening words:

“The Greencards couldn’t be here tonight as they are playing a show in Ames, Iowa – and what could be more Americana than playing in Ames, Iowa?!”
Thanks to all who voted for us,
The HEMI results are in, and The Greencards win again.
From the latest posting on
http://americanahighway.blogspot.com  (with the complete results)
Congratulations to all the 2006 Americana Highway HEMI Award Winners:
Favorite International Artist - The Greencards;
and another new group with ties to The Greencards that are worth a listen:
Favorite Songwriter - Doug & Telisha Williams

Thanks to everyone who made the first ever Americana Highway HEMI Awards a tremendous success. We hope that it was as much fun for you as it was for us. Congratulations to not only the winners...but to all the nominees. And thanks to all of the artists for making such great music. If you have any suggestions on how we can improve the awards for 2007, please send an email to
jack@americanahighway.com .
New/Emerging Artist of the Year
Friday, September 22, Nashville: At the historic Ryman Auditorium, The Greencards were named New/Emerging Artist of the Year by the Americana Music Association - one of only five awards given out tonight. Renowned guitarist Bryan Sutton, who appeared on both of The Greencards' albums, accepted on behalf of the band members who were the road performing in Ames, Iowa. The show was hosted by Jim Lauderdale and included live performances by Rosanne Cash and Vince Gill. Rodney Crowell was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award. The Americana Honors & Awards recognize and celebrate distinguished merit and outstanding achievement within the Americana genre.

From http://www.americanamusic.org  : "What is Americana Music? Americana is American roots music based on the traditions of country. While the musical model can be traced back to the Elvis Presley marriage of hillbilly and R&B that birthed rock 'n' roll, Americana as a radio format developed during the 1990s as a reaction to the highly polished sound that defined the mainstream music of that decade. By also including influences ranging from folk to bluegrass to blues and beyond, Americana handily bridges the gap between community radio and mainstream country."
(From Bill Aldacushion)
Vote for The Greencards in the 2006 HEMI Awards!
HEMI doesn't stand for anything; it’s just a Knoxville, Tennessee radio show's (Americana Highway) version of the Grammies because of the motor/engine tie-in. The Greencards are nominated in three categories. You can vote on-line here http://americanahighway.blogspot.com/ or by sending an e-mail to jack@americanahighway.com saying: "I vote for The Greencards for Favorite International Artist, Favorite Instrumental Performance and Favorite Band/Duo"  Please spread the word and get out the vote!
ACL Festival Madness
Up North
Songs and Strings Tour

There are miles and miles of Texas to go before we reach Oklahoma, but we’ll cross the state border soon and make our way to Kansas City for a show at The Grand Emporium. There’s been a lot of fun and great music since I last wrote, all of which diverted me from my true calling in life – writing this journal for you, my loyal readership! Playing the fiddle just gets in the way, and to be honest it’s more of a chore than anything – but now at last I have some time in the back of the van to write and tell you about our adventures! There have been lots of festivals, plenty of late nights and jam sessions; some of which sounded better than others, but it was all fun!

We ended our Songs and Strings Tour with Robin Ella and Mindy Smith up in St. Paul, Minnesota. We played some great venues including the Pabst Theatre in Milwaukee – a theatre with a strong history of Classical music. I could understand why they had a bust of Beethoven in the main hall, but what’s the idea of having one of Robert Wagner? Hart to Hart was a decent bit of television, but the music was rubbish! Anyway, it didn’t even look like him…

Both Robin and Mindy were excellent to share the stage with. Mindy has a new record out soon (‘Long Island Shores’), and the songs we heard sounded fantastic live. We got a chance to hang out together after the last show in St. Paul. We played a festival with Nickel Creek and The Jimi Hendrix Experience – quite the…er, experience! Those guys filled the stage with Marshall Amps and really rocked out! Despite us being armed only with acoustic instruments the crowd was lovely and ready to hear what we do.

After returning to the hotel, we all met up at McGovern’s Irish Bar for a wee drop. It was pretty quiet until we rocked up – Mindy and her co-producer Lex Price, Kevin the road manager form New York, Cruz (Robin’s hubby and keyboard player), Sara Watkins with a bunch of her old friends and various other people. We closed that bar down before moving to the next Irish bar (The Liffey), and really got stuck in! To cut a long story short, we ended up in Kym’s hotel room, pulling out our instruments, playing tunes and singing songs till the wee hours. Sara played my fiddle while I grabbed the viola. We proceeded to play some of the greatest twin fiddles in the history of acoustic music – you’ll just have to take my word for it! Judging by the way people were listening with their jaws dropped, they obviously felt the same way as us…that said, I’m glad we don’t have a recording of that session; the reality could be very frightening!

The theme of late night jams continued at the Winfield Guitar Festival. Having been there before I knew what to expect and held no fantasies about getting an early night. There are jams everywhere and in fact lots of people don’t even enter the festival – they are perfectly entertained by the campsites. I hooked up with my old friend Warren Hood from Austin, Texas and we found our favourite jam; swing musician Shelby (can’t remember his last name!) hosts a great jazz picking session. He’s a great fiddler and lots of people gathered there for a fun night of improvisation. Some of it was a bit above my head as I have forgotten a lot of that stuff. Still, it was really great fun, and refreshing to shake the cobwebs off the swing folder hidden deep in my musical library.

There were great pickers at this festival including guitar icons Tommy Emanuel and Pat Flynn. We were very fortunate to bring Bryan Sutton – he played on two of our records and has shared the studio/stage with great artists like The Dixie Chicks and Ricky Skaggs. He had never visited Winfield before so we were honoured to have him with us. An astonishingly incredible musician, Bryan really threw us for a loop when he picked up my viola and we played an intro together for one of our new songs. I later found out that his first gig with Ricky Skaggs was playing twin fiddles with the legendary Bobby Hicks. Having Mr. Sutton there with us was a great musical boost, and he was a great spirit to be around – thanks Bryan! Greatest moment of the festival has to be when Tommy Emanuel sat in with us and played his musical rear off! It’s like riding a steam train when he digs in and I just hold on for the ride.

Rarely do we have two great festivals in the same week, but we headed straight to Austin for the Austin City Limits Festival. Downtown in Zilker Park, hundreds of thousands of people flock to hear acts like Van Morrison, Ben Harper, KT Tunstall and Tom Petty. I was definitely overwhelmed by the size of the thing, even though this was not my first time there. I really didn’t have the inclination to run around before our show – it takes adrenaline to negotiate the throngs of people, and I knew it would disturb my state of mind for the show. So I mainly stayed backstage and enjoyed the air conditioning. I did sneak out to catch the delectable KT Tunstall, who I think is an incredible artist. She also has a charming Scottish accent – that’s like Kryptonite to my ears and makes me weak at the knees! She was fantastic of course and afterwards I did see her wandering about backstage but I did not have the bottle (courage) to say hello…I took myself in the opposite direction to avoid any embarrassing mumbled blushes.

Our set was at 6.30pm on Sunday at the Austin Ventures Stage. There was a great crowd of course (Austin folks are incredibly devoted and loyal), and the sun was slowly setting as we began our set. There were a few moments where we felt overwhelmed by Ben Harper’s show – sometimes the wind would carry his music across our stage. That’s just par for the course for a festival of that size, and not something you can predict. We just got on with it knowing that it sounded great out front (thanks to our main man Steve Law!). We played a couple of songs from the new record just to tease people a little; you’ll have to wait till next year to find out if you like the rest of it…

Tom Petty was halted in the middle of his set by rain and lightning, raising serious safety concerns, so, slightly upset, we left the park trying to beat the mass exodus of people. Not till the next day did we discover Tom had actually gone on stage again to play another hour of music! What a disappointment. Still, we have resolved to see him again somewhere this year. Have to check his tour page… The next two days were spent in Austin simply recuperating (aided by a wonderful Margarita from Trudy’s!), and preparing for the rest of the tour. We have about a week left, playing in Kansas, River Forest (Chicago), Ames Iowa, Viroqua and Madison. I can’t wait to get back to the cold weather again and see some old friends in that part of the country. Come out to a show if we are anywhere near you, or have your friends look at our tour page!
Bye for now!

Eamon's Journal
9.5.06 –Old Roads Seem New Again
Back on the job site
Co-bill with (fellow) Americana Superstars (!)
Very exciting times here in The Greencards – we are preparing the artwork for the new record, playing some great shows all over the States and moving into Autumn with a trip into Pennsylvania! That’s right ladies and gentlemen; we are back on the road doing what we do for the good American public. We are lucky enough to have the guitar talents of the mighty Andy Falco accompanying us, and that boy loves to pick! Everyone feels fresh and eager to attack the schedule – nice to have that hunger back again after our exhausting summer took its toll. I really enjoyed our time off in Nashville, but by the last week I was getting restless and longing to be out on the road again. It never used to be this way, but all of my routines are on the road now (load-in, sound-check, dinner in the local restaurant…), while at home it seems that everyday without a gig to aim towards feels like a wasted day. I think Psychologists refer to this as being ‘institutionalised’…

The first few dates on this tour are with two great artists – Mindy Smith and RobinElla. They are two of the finest female vocalists out there, and the mixture will be great. I think Mindy has a bus for the week (lucky her!), while RobinElla is bringing her brand new RV. I think RobinElla said she wants to ride with us to Cleveland, so that should be good fun! She is really enjoyable to hang out with, and has one of the best East Tennessee accents you’ll ever hear. If you haven’t checked out her music yet it’s high time you did!

Some great festivals this month – Winfield in Kansas should be a blast again! It’s like a camping and picking settlement in the middle of nowhere, and the music is always first class. After that it’s straight down to Texas for one of the highlights of the year – Austin City Limits Festival! We are in incredible company in Zilker Park with acts like Tom Petty and Van Morrison. We are also incredibly lucky to bring perhaps the greatest acoustic guitarist of our generation: Bryan Sutton. He has played on two of our records (including the new unreleased album), and also records for artists such as Bela Fleck, LeAnn Womack, Chris Thile and of course, The Dixie Chicks. Needless to say we are expecting a rather large musical kick up the backside once he steps onstage with us. We can’t wait!

Everyone’s feeling good and looking forward to the shows, so I hope we’ll see some of you there! Have a look at the tour page to see if we coming to a town near you!
"Home on the Lounge"
Home luxury – tea and practise
Myspace message

I came a home to a house that looked like it had been rampaged by a bunch of hooligans – clothes everywhere, outdated food in the fridge, CDs strewn across the desk and sheet music lying all over the place. It took me a few seconds to realise that this was not the work of mischief-makers, but rather the product of my schedule and the lack of time I have spent at home recently. I called my Mum for some cleaning advice, and thus with a large bin bag I set out to empty the place of all unneeded junk, followed by the scrubbing brush and a healthy dose of elbow grease. Within a few hours I transformed a rubbish tip into a nice little bachelor pad. Feeling very proud of myself I put the kettle on, had a nice cup of tea, and surveyed my good work. Funny how you can be so proud of such a domestic chore – in fact that’s why I don’t like to do it so often, I wouldn’t want to dilute the pleasure…

The Greencards are home and enjoying the pleasures of life. I have caught up with friends, practised my instruments, and now slowly importing all my music into my iPod. It is taking forever to do it! I am up to 4550 songs and I think I still have another 200 CDs to go! Too much music – I need a long road trip to remind me of al the music I never listen to any more. Never fear, there’s plenty of those in the future of The Greencards…

Has anyone checked out our Myspace (LINK) page recently? Its very cool and absolutely addictive – so be careful! We recorded a little greeting/update from the three of us, right in the living room – have a listen, it’s really fun! We were inspired by the wealth of podcasts out there; it is a really immediate way of communicating with a large number of people. Been listening recently to Ricky Gervais ( www.rickygervais.com/podcast.php ) podcasts that feature the hilarious mind of Karl Pilkington. We are all big fans of The Office and Extras, so check this out if you like any of the above).

Today is our last day mixing our record, and our Engineer Gary Paczosa had to take a break for a haircut. This wasn’t a snap decision, not like he suddenly an unexpected sprouting of hair and had to rush to the emergency Salon – no, he is leaving for Denmark tomorrow so he is squeezing in errands between finishing our record. There is a great chance that we will be looking at the finished product by the end of the night – very exciting! Don’t want to talk too much about what’s on there, but we are all very excited and proud of it so that has to be a good sign… Still, the proof of the pudding is in the eating, and we would like at least a hundred thousand to scoff this thing down when it is released! Stay tuned for announcement of release date…

Time to sign off now and indulge my real passion in life – football, or as they say here in the colonies, ‘Sah-Cerrr’ (soccer, my friends)! My team (Arsenal) is trying to qualify for the Champions League, while Kym’s team (Manchester Utd.) is playing in the domestic league. Come on the Gunners!
Take care,
August 11 2006
See A Tall Pine Tree!
Leaving behind the beautiful city of Seattle, we are heading 600 miles East to a small town called ‘Salmon, Idaho’. There’s nothing there for us except three hotel rooms, just a place to stay tonight before we head to the Reckless Kelly jamboree tomorrow. The Braun Brothers Festival promises to be quite an experience, with Cross Canadian Ragweed and Mickey and the Motorcars scheduled to appear along with other great acts. There are lots of people travelling up from Austin, Nashville and many other places for this bash, so we are looking forward to playing a great show and also catching up with some old friends. Knowing the Reckless boys as we do it will no doubt prove to be a very civilised affair with cups of tea, cucumber sandwiches and perhaps a string quartet on the veranda playing some Haydn - I’ll let you know how that goes…

Really enjoyed Seattle last night, played at The Triple Door for the first time. It’s a great venue with one of the best sound systems in the country, very swanky deco, two incredible restaurants and great staff. We had a lot of fun and the crowd was great, thanks to everyone who made the trip downtown!

Leaving behind the coffee Mecca of the northwest and driving through some beautiful countryside, it’s very pretty all around us. The mountains are beautiful, covered in tall pine trees that look like rug carpet. Gorgeous lakes lie off to the right and I can just make out some folks down there getting ready to hit the water. There’s a very vibrant atmosphere in this part of the country; a harmony with nature and healthy approach to life. Ironic that is also the home of grunge. How did that happen?

Not too much else happening folks, just have to get this van to where we need to be. Everybody is starting to feel the ache of sitting in the van for too many hours, so it will be nice to get to our destination and have some fun! Stay tuned for more travel updates…
Take care,
Eamon's Journal
August 7 2006
Sunny California folks, there’s nothing like it. The hills have turned brown this summertime and the sky is a beautiful crisp blue. They do things slightly differently out here, with a little twist on everything. Yesterday we played in the gorgeous wine district of Montalvo, for a festival of music organised by KPIG Radio. There amongst the vineyards and stately buildings were countless banners for KPIG – their symbol is a large pig’s face with sunglasses on, smiling gleefully! Rodney Crowell, Audrey Auld and David Bromberg were some of the other acts performing and though we would have loved to stay, we had to depart as soon as we
“I wish they all could be Californian…”

were done so we could make our next show in Fresno.

The worst news you can get when you rock into a new town is that there is a large act in town that will affect your crowd – The Dixie Chicks or Lyle Lovett for example. Last night we had little hope as our main rival in show business – Tool – was also playing. Clearly the thousands of people we were expecting at our show had gone to the dark side and joined countless similarly dressed folks in black, adorned in tattoos and moshing in the front row. Nonetheless we had fun at Fagan’s and played some fun music despite the fact we were tired from driving and hauling. To all fans who deserted us for Tool last night, please know you’re welcome back anytime!

Our day off today is being consumed by the 600 mile drive north to Canyonville, Oregon. Not too much to report really, just hoping we get to the hotel as soon as we can. We refuelled at Starbucks where I found an abandoned panhandling placard, and posing with it, my fellow band mates couldn’t resist taking some delightful snaps. Let me see if I can persuade them to put the photos on the web site…

I am off now to expand my iTunes collection, looking for some Kate Rusby, one of my favourite modern folk singers.
Take care folks; see you down the track,
August 4, 2006
Music Travelogue
The last 1200 miles were manageable; there were even some pleasant moments! But it is a cruel twist of fate that we head out this morning on another 1200-mile drive to Lake Tahoe. Oh well, I guess it gives us a chance to brainstorm and get some ideas for the rest of the year. As we fuelled up with coffee this morning (at our favourites multi-national corporation “Starbucks”), the girl behind the counter told us that she was a musician – to which Robbie advised her against squandering her youth on the road. In a flash, the other fella behind the counter retorted: “It’s better than squandering your life at Starbucks”. I think that’s what people refer to as a reality check…

So, no waxing lyrical here today. I’m just going to let you in on what we listen to as we journey through the desert.

Tom Petty – Highway Companion
New record from this legend of Rock and Pop, showcasing some brilliant songs and great playing from all involved. An excellent soundtrack to any long drives; there are many choruses that will have you singing along before the track is through, and lyrics that will bring a wry grin to your face.

Carey Ott – Lucid Dream
Dualtone Artist Carey Ott has created a modern pop masterpiece here. His songs and voice are beautifully entwined in a palette of retrospection, jubilation and eternal hope. His music is already swimming out there in the digital world, so get out there and discover this guy.

Aubrey Haynie – A Man Must Carry On
Fiddle Supremo from Nashville steps out on his second solo album to create a must-have for all fans of bluegrass fiddle and mandolin. Aubrey has played on everybody’s records (from Mark Knopfler to Brooks and Dunn), and his experience shines in this release. This is a great instrumental record.

Radiohead – OK Computer
Brilliant pop classic that always gets everybody’s attention when they listen to it. Thom Yorke sings beautifully as the band blends great grooves and obscure noises and effects. This is a great way to discover a great band – highly recommended for driving through the desert!

Beethoven - Concerto No.1
We only listened to the last movement but it was excellent. Classical music is not for everybody, but I have a weak spot for great classical. This Movement is dramatic and beautiful and unites the Orchestra into one beautiful entity. I can’t describe Classical music as well as some, but I do know this is fantastic and beautiful music – worthy of everybody’s attention.

That’s what I’ve been listening to folks, check it all out on iTunes to see if it’s what you want. Off to sleep now, see ye later!
August 3, 2006
 I can’t bring myself to begin with the old cliché that there is ‘no rest for the wicked’, but in fact I have commenced exactly that way. After touring Europe for two weeks we were home no longer than a day before we started up the old Chevy engine and headed out west for a three week run. It felt very hard to be home for such a small amount of time, barely enough to do laundry, tidy my house (which seems to get messier when I leave on tour), and check my emails. But this is the time of the year when there is work for us entertainers, and I know I’ll be complaining in the winter months when I feel like I’ll never face an audience again – so I better quit my whinging…

I am presently enjoying the benefits of modern technology, sitting here on the bench seat of the van with my beloved laptop. It took me a while to join the rest of the world by going portable with my computer but now I am totally hooked. If I had to choose between losing my fiddle and my G4 Powerbook…well, lets not even go there shall we?
I just finished my 5-hour driving shift, taking us from west side of Memphis to a little town just outside of Oklahoma. There has not been too much scenery around to be fascinated by and as Carol steers the van towards Amarillo I know the skyline will become even bleaker. There’s a unique feeling I get every time I head out this way, it is one of calmness and serenity – the pause button of life has been pressed for a small while. Of course we still have our mobile phones, but we can’t get on the Internet, and we can’t do any real work until we get to Albuquerque tomorrow. I always feel like we are journeying to a very different and separate place when we take this road – leaving behind the traditions and history of the south and finding a new land that is disconnected from all that. This isn’t meant to be a negative statement; it’s just that when I see the architecture in New Mexico and the ‘futuristic’ designs of everyday objects, I feel a lack of history. Having spent the last weekend in the 2000 yr old French village of Le Puy en Velay, this is going to be an interesting trip.
There are some very long drives on this trip and we will be pulling some early departures in order to make the shows. Everybody finds his or her own way of passing the time (I am writing this journal…), but there is no magic button to press that makes the time enjoyable. The sound of the Interstate is something that fades into the background, but its constant hum is always present, often making it difficult to listen to music on headphones. Semi Trailers are very common on this road and as I type there is a large one outside the window, only a few feet away, its monstrous engine whirring and moaning like a beast with an over-bearing load. As the road turns into a hill, the truck begins to lose power and fades in the rear-view mirror. It’s a long and lonely road tonight…

The only sounds in the van are the radio that is at Carol’s disposal, and the rhythmic clicks from this keyboard. Late night drives with Carol at the helm usually mean lots of seventies and eighties music. Thus I am preparing myself for large doses of Elton John and Pet Benatar – truth is nothing can prepare a man for a musical cocktail of that potency!
Kym has passed out on the backbench, having worn himself out playing Travel Scrabble with Carol. I don’t know anything about the standard of Australian Schooling, but when I am asked if “Kish” and “Que” are real words, I really begin to wonder if they are doing the Queen’s English justice down there. And while we sort out that problem let’s bring back corporal punishment and really whip the blighters into shape…

If you are living out west then please look at out tour schedule to see if we are playing anywhere near you. If you make it to a show then come and say hi – it’s always nice to meet folks who follow the band online. Now as the strains of Pink Floyd can faintly be heard from the radio, I am going to turn in and get a little kip before we hit our hotel for the night.
 Keep checking in on us,
"You must be the UK! We are from Australia and
England, but we live in Nashville..."

Whew! What a whirlwind this trip has been! I am now
sitting in Cafe Tam-Tam in the beautiful old village
of Le Puy, finally relaxing after all our work is
done. It has been exhilarating and brilliant, but
ultimately exhausting. Everything that could have gone
wrong did so horribly, yet somehow we managed to pull
together and jump every hurdle in our path. Without
our dear friend Rod McCormack we would have been in
terrible trouble. He helped us in every way and kept
everybody's spririts high. Man of the Match Award is
therefore handed out to the Gifted Guitarist from Down

I knew that driving in London would be a challenge,
but this was baptism by fire. I really did not drive
that much when I lived in England (I was a poor - in
every sense -  student), and thus I felt like a
tourist trying to find my way around the infuriating
one-way systems of central London. It took me an hour
to drive two miles to our first gig  and when we
arrived we quickly managed to blow up all our gear. We
were not adequately prepared for the UK voltage, and
with a flash of smoke that would have made Lord
Voldemort proud, we fried several pieces of musical
equipment. Only some quick thinking by our sound-man
Chris Beyer managed to solve the problem  - a black
London taxi delivered a power transformer that weighed
like an anvil and magically our gear worked again!

The show was in the legendary Borderline near the
Tottenham Court Road, famed for its Americana line-up
and top quality billing. What it is not renowned for
is the blistering heat we encountered as the British
heat-wave drove the nation to despair. I'm not sure if
I have ever sweated so much at any show. We were all
drowned in sweat by the time we left the stage. The
audience was wonderful and we played well - we even
got an encore!  I was really pleased to see lots of my
family and several old friends there who came out to
support the band (despite one or two heckling me at
inopportune moments...). We felt that things could
only improve from this point, and for a while they did
- but boy were we wrong!

Gateshead is a twin city to Newcastle and host of a
large Americana Festival. Brilliantly organised and
staged in a fantastic venue called The Sage, there
were several acts including Dwight Yoakam, Guy Clarke
and Solomon Burke. The next morning we drove north
once more to the glorious city of Glasgow. On arrival
we were faced with one of the most maddening one-way
systems I have ever encountered. It was the sort of
thing where you can see the building you need to get
to, in fact you can almost touch it, but it might as
well be ten miles away because you just can not figure
out how to get there . Kym left in his car separately
(it is worse if you try and convoy) and ten minutes
later I found my self wedged between parked cars,
hitting a dead end only to find some poor bugger in
front of me doing the same thing - of course it was
Kym! Great minds think alike they say, but my Mum also
says "fools seldom differ". After inching our way out
Austin Powers style (not kidding), we stopped a lady
on the street who just happened to be the receptionist
at the hotel we were staying at! Within minutes we
were holding our room keys! We also managed to play a
live slot for BBC Scotland thanks to Karen Miller, so
keep an ear out for us all ye Highland fans of our

A sensible man would have gone to bed early when our
departure times were around 6am, but there were just
too many old friends to catch up with every night. So
by the time we flew to Dublin the next morning I was
starting to feel the pace. We checked into our hotel
near St. Stephen's Green at the same time as my Mum,
Dad and sister  - so I knew there was no early night
in sight. Whelan's is a great venue and they treated
us very well despite our ongoing sound check. We
finally tweaked the system to out liking and found a
very enthusiastic and large audience - for a Monday
night we were overjoyed! That said, I was incredibly
nervous for two reasons: Sat in the front row was the
incredibly fiddle player Ciaran Tourish (from Irish
group Altan) who followed every note with a keen ear
and a watchful eye. I got to meet him after and he was
very nice and complimentary which made me very happy!
Secondly, my family had traveled from County Mayo and
County Kerry to catch the show and my hands were
trembling for the first four numbers! In fact I was
more nervous than if there had been fifteen thousand
people out there! I knew my family would love the
music but I was so anxious for them to enjoy it, I
could hardly relax and play music.  After singing my
first song and being prompted by Carol to share my
anxiety with the crowd, I felt my nerves subside a
little and the music really came together. Mum and Dad
were really impressed with everyone and it felt great
to sit down with a pint of real Guiness! We all stayed
up late with several pints of porter and ended the
night with a large portion of curry chips! Ah, the
good life and the simple things that make us happy!

Little did we know, trouble lay just around the
corner. We managed to find Nottingham and played a
great show at The Maze. By the time we checked in at
Heathrow for our flight to Lyon, we were really
looking forward to some peace and serenity in France.
Sitting at the bar in the Departure Lounge we glanced
at the screen to find our flight had been canceled -
along with several other European flights due to a
terrible thunderstorm. What followed can only be
described as  chaos. We collected our baggage, headed
to the British Airways Counter, and found three
hundred people queuing up for a desk manned by three
people, which promptly closed after half an hour
leaving most of us completely in the dark. BA could
not provide adequate hotels, and we were looking at
spending the entire night at the Airport. The scene
was just like all those images you see when there are
reports of stranded holiday go-ers at Heathrow. People
were lying dejected and hopeless on the floor with
trolleys stacked high and children running amok.
Carol's spirits were lifted when she spotted Simon
Cowell from American Idol (keep your eyes peeled for a
great picture!), but our spirits fell again as we
tried to sort out our accommodation. Again, Super-Rod
came to the rescue as he remembered an old friend who
lived close to Heathrow. Despite it being well past
midnight we were welcomed by a lovely lady by the name
of Pauline who welcomed these weary travellers with a
cup of tea!  Al least we had a bed for the night...

The next day began at 4.45am with a taxi booked for
Rod and Gina. As luck would have it, it did not arrive
- and their telephones were closed when Rod called to
check on the car. Things were going from bad to worse.
Luckily Pauline knew a private driver who answered
his phone at 5 in the morning and took them on their
way. They flew via Amsterdam while we left at 6.30am
for Lyon. We were happy to arrive but this quickly
turned to utter despair as only half our baggage
arrived. They had lost our most vital stuff  - the
guitar, bouzouki, bass amp, fiddle rack, guitar rack
and Kym's mandloin pre-amps! Utter, complete and
absolute nightmare! The soundcheck was in five hours!
What's worse was they had no idea where these items
were - they could have been lying in the bowels of
Heathow Airport or on a flight to Timbuctoo for all
they knew. As we got in the van to drive to Le Puy, we
came to terms with the fact we would have to beg and
borrow in order to play our set. This was definitely
less than ideal...

The musicians at the festival rallied to our cause by
offering anything we required, and though we only
borrowed one guitar, we could at least plug in and
cover most of the set. Add to this the total
exhaustion we were feeling, you can probably imagine
how we were not holding high hopes for our
performance. However, the sound crew were exceptional,
the organisers were sympathetic and overjoyed to see
us and the press conference held some of the happiest
journalists I have ever seen. By the time we took the
stage we had been won over by the power of French
charm and people who were simply happy to see us. The
audience simply blew us away! A sea of seven thousand
people sang, danced and beamed beautiful smiles at us
and we magically managed to forgot all our woes and
play a really fun set of music. Looking at over at my
band-mates, everyone was smiling and loving every
minute of it. What's more, Australian superstar Gina
Jeffries guested with a song that delighted everyone
as they pulled out their cameras to capture this great
moment. Coming back for an encore, we gathered every
last ounce of energy left  in our tired and weary
bodies and closed with some rousing bluegrass. What
can I say? Viva la France!

Now the storm is over (we hope!). I am still at this
lovely cafe surrounded by locals and tourists alike,
as my stomach tells me it is time to think about
dinner an a relaxing glass of wine. I pray that our
journey back to the US is far less eventful since we
only have one day off before we jump into the van and
head to New Mexico.  Until then, I am going to rest,
drink a glass of wine and recover with my battle weary
band mates.
Au Revoir,
2006 UK Tour
July 27th
Last day in UK today, as we prepare to head down the
M1 to Heathrow Airport and fly to France. We played
last night in Nottingham at a venue called 'The Maze'
and it turned out to be a great night! Lots of people
there who were big fans of live music and they were
really happy to see us!

The tour has been great fun so far but very tiring -
not just because of the driving or unfamiliar
territory, but it seems that every night I had family
or old friends at shows and thus lots of reasons to go
to the pub and have a good natter until two in the
morning. This becomes even more difficult when the
departure times are set for 5am!

As soon as we get to France I think I will compile all
my favourite and funny moments from the tour -
blunders and all! The cars are being pulled up to the
front of the hotel so I had better go and grab my
suitcase. I have had a fantastic time here in the UK
but I cant wait to get to France for a bit of a
holiday - four nights in a lovely hotel in a 2000 year
old French village, with copious amounts of du Vin, du
Pain, du boursin!
Viva la France!
July 26 - 1am
Why, I hear you ask, have there been no journals from
me for a few days?  Well, it is because the UK has a
distinct defecit of free internet connections. In
fact, the last hotel we were at charged GBP15.00 ($30
approx.) for 24 hrs!

But here I am at our Nottingham hotel with free
internet, but it is really late and I am absolutely
cream-crackered (translation: knackered). Thus I
resolve to get into bed and sleep till I wake, then I
will let you know the sordid details of our adventures
here in the Motherland.
Another Day Another Journal
London - Day Two (7/20) 2006
We picked up our guitar player today - the
ever-impressive Rod McCormack, who flew in from
Australia! We have worked with Rod on several
occasions and this was an extra special treat as he
brought his wife, Gina, along with him.

The ride from Heathrow Airport was surprisingly
uneventful as we picked up Rod and Gina, as well as
our ace sound man Chris Beyer. Chris worked with us on
the Bob Dylan tour, and is a sound engineer of
exceptional quality. Lucky for us he is working the
entire European leg for us!

We did a little bit of sightseeing today, but in
general we all felt very tired today. We have flipped
our schedules to Euro time, but after a large Italian
Meal in Kensington I am feeling rather worse for wear.
I can feel my eyelids heavier and heavier, and I might
have to throw in the towel even though it is only
10:30pm. Blanket Street is calling my name....

Right, so its off to bed for me on this unseasonably
hot night in Blighty. Lots more adventures to come and
many more stories - so keep checking back with me!
Diary from Carol (UK)
Tuesday July 18, 2006
 What is it with air conditioners on planes…well, air conditioners in general. I’m not a fan really. There are always bound to be a few tense moments when the guys and I are in the van, driving across the country…well, until a happy medium is found. Usually it’s on the cold side but we’ve struck a deal to keep the vents pointed away from my direction!
 American Airlines, flight AA66 to London…whoopee!
This my very first time to Europe. First stop London with a show at the famous Borderline in the West End on Friday night…that means we’ve got a couple of days doing a little radio + press before then, but mostly sight-seeing and pub-hopping (as you do in the UK!). Normally when on the road I’m the only female but this tour my dear friend from Australia, Gina McCormack is flying in with her husband, Rod who is the guitar with us on this run. We were extremely fortunate to have Rod out with us on the June tour in the US as well.
 After The Borderline we drive up to Newcastle for an outdoor festival at The Sage @ Gateshead…about a 4 hour drive. Festivals are always a far better experience for us when we have our own sound guy, which doesn’t happen too often but fortunately we have our good friend with us from upstate NY, Chris Beyer, who did sound for us on the Bob Dylan/Willie Nelson Tour last summer. Aaahh, what a relief, now we can just have fun playing music.
 Up early Sunday morning and drive up to Glasgow, Scotland. Mapquest says it’s about 2.5 hours but we’ve been told to allow up to 4 hours!
Setup at BBC Scotland, play a few songs, chat to host Karen Miller ( friend of Eamon’s), pull down gear and head over to the IBIS Hotel. We’ve tried to get hotels that are both convenient to the gig and in the thick of it….there’ll be no drinking and driving for any members of this band, we plan on hailing down one of those famous British Taxis….I hear the drivers like to chat too. The gig is at a place called “ABC”…lets see what Glasgow is like on a Sunday night.
 Monday…..The Greencards fly to Dublin, Ireland. We’re prepared to be nailed with excessive excess baggage charges, we hear Air Lingus is vicious with them. I’ve got a lot of high hopes for Dublin, been on top of my list for a while. Everyone that goes says you have to go to the pub for a Guiness, the only problem is I hate the stuff.  I’ve been assured it’s a totally different and of higher quality over there. I have a theory that it’s the same as everywhere else in the world except you’re drinking it in the country it originated from in it’s proper environment….it could also be that the water that is used in Guinness is different in every country. Have no idea what the answer is but I’m definitely up for a pint of Guinness and chips with curry sauce in downtown Dublin. “Whelans” is the venue we play, I hear Eamon’s family are coming to the show.
 The next day is a day off in Dublin…more Guinness, think I’ll give the shepherds pie a go.
 Fly back to Heathrow on Wednesday morning, collect hire cars and drive to Nottingham. I have no idea where it is but it sounds quaint. Do radio at BBC Nottingham and play that night at The Maze.
 Now the fun begins, we’re off to France! Now I’ve been looking forward to this. Heard great things about the festival we’re booked on Friday night. We fly into Lyon FR (south of Paris) where we have a driver collecting us and driving approx 2 hours to the hotel in Craponne. Some villages in this city are over 2,000 years old…amazing. We received an email the night before we left Nashville with some guidelines we need to follow when in this town. By law you cannot take food or alcohol into the hotel or consume any alcohol on the streets or you’ll be arrested. You are also forbidden to make noise after 10pm…hope they have wireless! Glad the festival organizers warned us.
 Friday is festival day…interviews before the show and performance just before midnight…meet and greet afterwards…will let you know how it goes!
 It will be a treat to have a day off wandering the streets the next day. I wonder how far it is to the shores of the Mediterranean Sea from Crapponne?
 We’re also hanging around for the last day of the festival to hear Jon Randall play. I’ve admired Jon’s music for years. He played with Emmylou Harris on the “Live From The Ryman” album where he played guitar and sang gorgeous harmonies with the queen herself. I hear he’s bringing Dave Pomeroy on bass and maybe bringing his partner Jessie Alexander, a great singer herself. In case you haven’t heard of Jon it may help if I told you he wrote “Whiskey Lullaby” for Alison Krauss + Brad Paiseley, winning a Grammy for “Country Song Of The Year”.
 Monday…Lyon – Heathrow – Chicago – Nashville…arrive Nashville, climb in the van and drive to Albuquerque NM to start a 3 week tour through California, Washington, Oregon, Idaho before we make our way to Vermont for festival (help)…I just hope the boys in the band stick to the deal we have with the vents for a drive of that magnitude!
 Return to Nashville for 2 weeks off before heading out on the road with Mindy Smith and Robinella early Sept, doing a run of Performing Arts Centres….should be fun listening to those two amazing singers each night.
 Late Sept we’re off to Winfield Festival in KS and Austin City Limits Festival in Austin TX…as an added bonus for all we have Bryan Sutton out with us on guitar for that run…must run, gotta go practice!
Eamon's  Journal - LONDON - July 19th.
As a teenager I spent most weekends traveling through
the centre of London on the way to gigs, staring out
at all the folk who were carrying Harrod's handbags
and gawping through the gates of Buckingham Palace.
Well, today things came full circle with myself
playing the role of tourist in my own hometown. With
our first day being our only real day off in London, I
was determined to make the most of it and get into the
heart of the city. The headlines all spoke of the heat
wave they have been experiencing here - "Phew It's
102!" was from The Sun, Britain's finest tabloid - and
so I knew that when I landed I was in store for a
sweaty day!

The day began at Heathrow Airport and the hiring of a
rental car. After Kym had successfully masterminded
the loading of equipment, I sat in the driver's seat
(on the right!) raring to go - except we couldn't find
the handbrake! I mean, we searched all over the
dashboard, under the steering column, under the
rugs... I even stepped out of the seat so Carol and
Kym could search for this wretched mechanism, but alas
no joy! We had to eventually call for help! Only our
sense of humour prevented us from feeling like
complete numbskulls, especially when the nice
attendant pointed out the LARGE 'P' button with bright
orange lights on the dashboard. Blushing a little, we
were off!

Rigorous planning by Carol meant we were well equipped
with directions to our hotel, and with Kym as Chief
Navigator and yours truly as driver we set off on our
short (half-hour) trip to the Hampstead Britannia
Hotel. Unfortunately something went wrong along the
way - I think it was by the Hammersmith Flyover,
looking fruitlessly for the A3220. Needless to say we
couldn't find it! Carol strained her head out the
window to ask a local driver, I faced oncoming traffic
to quiz a Cabbie and Kym ducked into the local NatWest
Bank. All of which led us to the same conclusion - we
were completely and hopelessly lost! Therefore Kym
jumped into a London Black Cab armed with the address,
and we followed with our tails between our legs!
Getting lost in London is a total nightmare - take it
from me...

Feeling slightly stressed, we checked into our Hotel.
After a short while we were safely loaded into our
rooms and ready to de-stress. Fortunately, British
hotel rooms are well equipped for this; every room
comes with a kettle, tea and milk! Ah, civilisation at
last! After scoffing down a Walker's shortbread with
my Rosie Lee, I was ready to jump into the cultural
delights of London. I took the tube from Chalk Farm as
scorching winds rose up from the Underground on this
outrageously hot summer day, taking the Northern Line
to the Embankment (by Charing Cross). It has been a
few years since I spent any time in the centre of
London and it was breathtaking to climb the Tube exit
and find myself staring at the River Thames and the
colossal Millennium Eye. A beautiful sight! I don't
mean to come across all jingoistic (there's a British
word for you), but it felt fantastic to be in England!

I headed south for a few blocks as my eyes feasted
upon the glorious sight of Big Ben and the Houses of
Parliament - this golden structure immediately
impresses itself upon you and its spiky structure
seems to suggest it is attached to a higher wisdom. At
this moment I knew and felt in my heart that I was
back in Old Blighty - Great Britain!

Feeling a new sense of wonderment, I tried to find the
buildings that were still open to the public at four
in the afternoon and headed into Westminster Abbey.
Originally built in 950 A.D. , the sense of history in
those walls is truly phenomenal. As well as housing
the tombs of King Henry VII, Mary Queen of Scots, and
the infamous Olliver Cromwell, one can also find the
resting places of people such as Geoffrey Chauccer,
Sir Isaac Newton and Charles Dickens! Truly astounded
I found the last grave on the way out - an unknown
British warrior from the fields of France, taken
during the First World War and buried among Royalty
and Artists to commemorate his service for his King
and the Good of his country. It was a very poignant
moment for everyone who stood around this soldier.

For everyone who has not visited the UK, let me say
that you have to go! Yes, it is very expensive and
some of the beer is warm, but there is a tremendous
joy to be had just walking around the streets of
London. There are millions of people here and I yet I
get the distinct impression that everyone knows
everyone. Seeing St. James' Park rammed full of men
and women having a picnic after work is a
heart-warming scene!

It is so interesting to note the different faces and
different personalities you find in different cultures
- lighter skin, different body language etc ... Yet
there are many familiar faces - I did several double
takes today thinking I saw many of my U.S. friends.
But no, it was not Aileen jogging in Regent's Park
(she runs in Central Park), and it certainly wasn't
Ozgur eating a greasy kebab in Picadilly Square.
However, I will swear blind that I saw Sam Bush in a
white Transit van delivering Pizza! I swear, it was

The work load begins tomorrow in earnest, but I will
keep you updated as often as I can - no excuses now I
have my trusty PowerBook!
At our last show in Michigan, a fan walked up to me
and said "Hey! Thanks for the new journal!", and I
replied  "What new journal?",  "Exactly...! " he
countered with a sneer...

Yes I apologise for the lack of journals in the last
couple of months, bu here i am armed with a new weapon
- my Power book Laptop! It is amazing! As i sit here
in Chicago's O'Hare Airport I realise I have joined
the throng of people staring into a computer screen
and feeling very seld-important! But what do I care?
If I had known that it this is all it takes to make me
feel this important I would have bought one years ago!

So basically, here's the scoop: They have just started
boarding my flight to London Heathrow, and we are
starting our first European tour. We visit London,
Glasgow, Nottingham , Gateshead, Dublin and France!!
Pretty Amazing don't you think?

So I will be writing an awful lot now i have this
incredible peice of machinery, and will include lots
of interesting tales of our European adventures. 
Come back soon!!
The Greencards Nominated for Best New/Emerging Artist of the Year 2006
June 16: The Greencards have been nominated in the New/Emerging Artist of the Year category of the Americana Honors & Awards by the Americana Music Association. Other nominees in the category include James Hunter, Robinella and Uncle Earl. Winners will be announced on Friday evening, September 22nd during the Americana Music Conference in Nashville. The conference will bring together an estimated 900 artists, record executives, managers, agents, music publishers, performing rights society executives, music retailers, producers, promoters, allied professionals and major media for three days of learning, networking and entertainment. For more information see:
Latest CD weather and water
Carol Young, Kym Warner and Eamon McLoughlin.
with guests Bryan Sutton, Pat Flynn, Kenny Malone and Jedd Hughes
First CD -Movin' On
Congratulations Greencards!! on reaching #5 on the AMA Americana Airplay
May 15
First Day of Recording Album #3
The Album has officially begun ladies and gentlemen!
On the whole this was a very satisfying and productive
day. I walked in to the studio at 10am to find Bryan
Sutton surrounded by several old Martin guitars, and
Larry Atamanuik dancing his way around a snare. We are
lucky to have two such incredible musicians here with us.

We tracked two songs today, which given the time of
set-up, was a fine achievement. The first was a Kym
Richey song, and a cracker at that. Producer Doug
Lancio steered us in the right direction, and once we
had a take that flowed in all the right directions,
the song took on a life of its own. Larry overdubbed
shakers and cymbals, Kym played a very inventive solo
(I won't ruin the surprise...), and Carol sang
beautifully. It was a good way to start the day!

Song two was called Shiniing In The Dark, also sung by
Carol. A little more difficult to get the right feel
on this one, but Larry showed us the way by throwing
away his sticks and playing with his hands. Bryan also
changed the track greatly with some different grooves
and came up with a great idea for the bridge. I wasn't
sure how this one would turn out, but it really shaped
up well today.

Finished up fairly early tonight, left the studio by
8pm. Everyone is pretty knackered after the last tour
so an early night tonight will hold us in good
standing for the rest of the week. A good opening day
was the sign we were all looking for, so now we can
move boldly forward.

Check back in a few days for another update!
Full Steam Ahead’
May 14, ‘06
It’s Sunday morning here in Nashville, a very peaceful day when business and industry are relegated to the back seat. We drove back from Hiawassee GA last night, after playing a great festival there. There were some great acts on the bill, including The Steep Canyon Rangers, The Gibson Brothers, and the remarkable Seldom Scene who brought the whole proceedings to a halt with their amazing harmonies. These guys elevate bluegrass harmonies to a new level with four-part singing that would not be out of place in a 15th century choral work. This was a very high level of music performance we were lucky to witness.

In fact this whole trip had some great moments – we stole Rob Gjersoe from Austin, who delighted us with his sage-like guitar performances and stand-up comedy routines. From the carnival of downtown Philly where we played the Tin Angel, we worked our way down through New Jersey and into the south, hitting Raleigh (Pour House), Greenville (The Handlebar) and landed at a two-day festival called LEAF in Black Mountain, NC. This was a great festival in an idyllic setting, set beside a beautiful lake. It reminded of Strawberry Fest in Yosemite CA, except scaled down to a third of the size. We teamed up with Boston band Crooked Still, friends of ours from MerleFest last year. A fantastic band anchored by the beautiful vocals of Aoife Donovan, also featuring the unique cello of Rushaad Eggleston, Corey on bass and the stand in banjo-beacon of hope, Noam Pikilny. This great band comes highly recommended by The Greencards – check them out by clicking on the link!

After a fun but exhausting trip, it is nice to wake up this morning to a town that is taking life at a leisurely pace. Tomorrow may well be a different story, both for Nashville and us. Reason being we head into the studio to create our third record, with Doug Lancio at the helm and Jason Lehning on the desk. Exciting stuff! Any album you make can have such a drastic impact on your career – we have decided to approach it with two things in mind: a) This is the most important thing we have ever done, and (b) it is also the most UN-important, meaningless thing we have ever done! It is time now to go into the studio, chill out, put the kettle on, have a nice sit-down, and make some fun music. The idea is to try some different stuff on this album, with more emphasis upon ‘capturing the moment’ If you would like to find out how it’s going, then check back here for regular updates on the recording process. I’ll try and include some interesting titbits and stories from the studio to whet your appetite! I’ll post the first one on Tuesday, and after that as often as possible.

Summer touring starts in June and we resume our regular nomadic lifestyle, hopefully visiting a town near you – check the tour page for details. Wish us luck in the studio! We hope to emerge with our Rubber Soul intact….
Down Under!  - May
The Fortune of War is the oldest Pub in Sydney, and believe me there is a fair amount of competition here - the sheer number of pubs around here is impressive! I am sitting at the bar with a pint of Victoria's Beer, a note pad and it is high time to fill you in on what has been going on in our world. This is our first real day off in two weeks, and I have taken myself to a district of Sydney called The Rocks: "Settled in 1788 by convicts and troops, rich in heritage and home to several delightful restaurants" - so says my Sydney guide-book. 100 years ago these streets were rife with disease and sordid characters but now they provide a home to Ben Sherman, Louis Vuitton and Georgio Armani. Delightful it is, with traditional cuisine being offered alongside sushi and French bakeries. The air outside is slightly damp as I nurse this excellent brew, and if I am lucky the rain will hold off until after I have walked back to the train staion. The telly is broadcasting the national sport, Aussie Rules, which appears to be a comination of rugby, ultimate boxing and general hooliganism - remind me never to play this game...

We have just finished our Australian shows, and everyone is enjoying a little time off. Kym and Carol are both with their families, who were all very happy to see them! I have taken a few days to wander around and see a few old friends who live in the suburbs. The highlight of the trip was definitely Byron Bay; one of the most beautiful places I've ever been to. Stunning golden beaches, great hotels and glorious waves. The audience was the most eclectic I have ever seen, with travellers from all over the world. I was lucky enough to meet two Scottish ladies, Lotty and Angela, who persuaded me to join them in some fine pancakes and ice-cream! We wandered off into the crowd to watch David Gray, who was truly outstanding. Thousands of people joined in on every chorus, raising their roof as they sang "Babylon"! If you don't get that reference then I recommend you add Mr. Grey to your music collection ASAP!

Backstage at the Byron Bay Festival reminded me of scenes from The Hitch-Hiker's Guide To The Galaxy, specifically when the characters visit the Restaurant At The End of the Universe. There were performers from every corner of the world, sitting side by side as they ate their meals. There were African performers with wild vibrant colours and long dreadlocks, dancers from the Orient speaking a language I could not even venture a stab at, Aboriginal performers with traditional face paint, cool American artists like Tristan Prettyman walking around in their flip-flops, and representing Ol' Blighty (that's Great Britain to the uninformed...) was the piano-playing acrobat Jamie Cullum who put on an incredibly energetic show! That was just the sight of meal time on Friday evening! I wish I could have been there for the late-night antics, but unfortunately we headed off to our hotel before the end of the last set...

Mark Twain once said "Australia is England with American trimmings". I can only guess he was referring to the Old and New World qualities of Oz. I recognise many buildings and traits from the UK, but there is also a modern quality which reflects the young-age of this nation. One aspect of life here that continues to amuse me, is the generous approach to swearing - these people now how to really give it a go! Rarely offensive, it just seems to be part of the tongue down here. We performed live on Sydney Radio, belted out our first song and then looked at the DJ who was stunned for a moment before declaring: "S**t! That's good!" The Greencards fell to the floor in laughter, barely regaining enough composure to ask "Can we swear on radio?". Our DJ replied "F****en oath you can!" Only in Australia!

A large drill has begun to tear up the streets of The Rocks, and I'll take that as my cue to head back to Town Hall Train Station. May will be a busy month for us, with touring and recording of a new album! I'll post more details of that before we head in to the studio, but we are all very excited to be working with Producer Doug Lancio. This will be more of an adventure for all of us, and exciting days lie ahead!

Stay tuned for more info, avoid suspicious looking characters in the outback, eat a meat pie every day, and drive on the correct side of the road.
“Beware the Madness of March! ”
 The month of March always presents two very different challenges for a touring band. First being SXSW Festival in Austin TX, and the second being St. Patrick’s Day on the 17th. This year we were due to appear at the DualTone SXSW showcase in Austin on the 16th, and the next night, St Patrick’s, at the Ark, Ann Arbor Michigan. Not exactly the best routing I’ve ever seen, but we managed to play both, have enormous fun, and arrive back in Nashville in one piece.
Our escapade began in earnest as we drove from Nashville to Columbus for a show on the 15th. We played to a small, but very appreciative crowd, and while the last chord was still hitting the back wall, I had the van revved up, raring to go, as Kym threw the last bag in to the back and we hit the road for Detroit Airport. Arriving at the Airport Hotel at 4.30am was no fun – but even less so was getting up again in four hours to catch our flight to Austin. The plane was full of young stylish folks carrying electric guitars, and slightly older folks with armed with laptops and business cards. Combine those two ingredients and you have the deadly cocktail known to the world as South By Southwest! Into this swirling and steaming broth we descended…

Austin airport greeted us like old friends, and walking towards the baggage carousel I could hear the strains of hot jazz fiddle – Elana Fremerman was swinging hard on the stage! Within the first minute of being there, Elana beckoned me onstage, and before I could rub the sleep from my eyes, I had launched into a solo on Limehouse Blues. To be honest I had absolutely no idea what key we were in, what chords were up next, or even which song it was. I just played as fast as I could and hoped the odd note might resonate. Elana let me play another tune with them, so I guess my notes were at least legal…that has to set a record for quickest gig-find in Austin, surely?!

Our showcase at Momo’s on the 16th also featured some great music from our label-mates. Robin Ella had a cracking new band to support her silky vocals. Newcomer Carey Ott Has a record entitled ‘Lucid Dream’ which is really fantastic music, somewhat pop I guess you could say – really first class stuff. His band was excellent and they clearly loved every minute of their show. 11pm saw The Greencards take the stage to a packed house of new and old faces, and we blasted our way through a great set. Robbie Gjersoe was once more the guitar rock upon which we all stood – also played some fantastic leads! Cheers mate!
I could have partied all night, but unfortunately we had to leave for the airport at 6.30am. Parting is such sweet sorrow, someone once said, and it certainly rang true for us as we boarded the early flight to Detroit. It has been over a year since I lived in Austin, but this was the first time I felt like an outsider coming to ‘visit’ Austin. Inevitable, I guess…we all had a great time, and will get back to play as soon as we can! We miss you Austin!
Fatigue is the friend of sleep, and that is exactly what I did all the way to Detroit. Only to discover our bags and equipment had been left in Dallas! Apparently, the guitars really didn’t want to leave Texas! A combination of anxiety, exhaustion and two hours to kill before the next flight took us to Leonardo’s for some great Italian food. We were quite delirious at this stage, and Gjersoe provided the humour between enormous servings of carbohydrates. Well fed and in slightly better spirits we were overjoyed to find our bags had made it to Detroit on the next plane. They were thrown into the van at high speed, and we rushed off to Ann Arbor to perform at one of the finest venues in the U.S. – The Ark. St Patrick’s Day celebrations were in full bore as we arrived at tea-time; streets full of young folks dressed in green (just like they are in Ireland every day – not!). Perhaps Patrick wished us well that day, because we played to 300 people that night, all in good cheer and high spirits. We toasted old Erin’s shores by kicking off the set with an old reel called The Mason’s Apron; this is a tune I learned from the great Stockton’s Wing – a fine Irish band from the 80s. The audience were with us all the way, soaking up the music and laughing at the patter. A standing ovation at our first headline slot at the Ark was a great reward for our trials and tribulations that week. It really did make it all worthwhile – thanks to all who came!
Time off now in Nashville – after all that scurrying around it feels a great luxury to sit at the computer with a glass of Jameson’s, listening to Glenn Gould on the stereo – Aaah! We are all writing new material and polishing our playing for the upcoming concerts. We are off to Oz in two weeks, and return to a heavy schedule that begins with the recording of a new record! How exciting! Lots more details about that to follow, but if I am to finish my songs tomorrow I should probably sign off here and hit the hay! Thanks for all who came to the shows this month, hope to see you again soon. Keep checking the tour page!
Howdy Folks
April is quickly approaching...Kym, Eamon and I fly into Sydney April 4th to be exact and we can't wait. Kym and I are flying with Air New Zealand for the first time, with a quick stop over in Auckland before touching down in the land of meat pies! I feel very confident that I can take on about 3 of them in the first hour at least, preferably steak and onion but any will do.

April 5th and 6th will be spent with Rod and Gina McCormack at Erina Valley, hanging out and playing some music...hopefully consuming a cocktails in the process.  Friday the 7th is the Lizottes show...we've heard quite a bit about this venue and after hearing the show is selling well, it sounds like we're in for a good start to the Australian Tour. We plan on catching up with the Chambers Family and Worm over the weekend...can always count on Worm for a good hearty meal!

An update on The Basement show...fortunately this one has been moved to Monday night April 10th @ 9:30pm. There is no way we could compete with Jackson Browne and The Rolling Stones, both in Sydney on the 11th. This show will also feature some special guests towards the end of the night.

Then it's off to Byron Bay for The Byron Bay Bluesfest! April 13th we play an 8:15pm show then Good Friday we're down for a 2pm show...any of you folks heading up for that one? In years past we've heard stories about the music that comes out of this festival, we can't wait to get in amongst it.
I have so many good friends that are coming up to Byron for this festival, will be so good to see everyone...and the best part is we get to spend Easter with them!
Both Kym and my parents have decided they cannot keep up at Byron and have chosen to leave it to the youngens....wise choice I feel.

Saturday morning, April 15th we pack up and head down to Taylors Arm for the Pub With No Beer Festival.  My Dad, who lives in Coffs Harbour has informed me that he's rounded up half the town to drag them down to check us out...this will be an 8pm performance and the last of the Australian Tour.

Folks, the best news of all is Rod McCormack will be joining us on guitar for the entire tour. In fact, we have the honour of having Rod join the band on our US West Coast Tour in June '06 that winds up at Telluride Music Festival in Telluride Colorado...In July Rod will also join us in Europe for a 2 week tour.
Hope we catch up with some of you during April for a schooner or two!
The Greencards Head Home to Australia
Nashville, TN (March 3rd, 2006) – Dualtone Records band The Greencards, made up of Carol Young, Kym Warner and Eamon McLoughlin, are headed to Australia for some upcoming dates in April. Very fitting seeing as two of the three members, Warner and Young, are native Aussies themselves.

With 2005 being a banner year for this group, including the release of their critically acclaimed album Weather and Water, that reached #1 at Waterloo Records in Austin, TX, a tour opening for Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson, a U.S. tour with Kasey Chambers, and sold out shows nationwide, they are very excited to be able to head home and enjoy some of their new found success on their old stomping grounds.

“Two years is far too long. I’ve missed OZ like crazy so we are thrilled to be coming back and playing again,” states Warner. “The Byron Bay Festival is going to be fantastic and its footy season. PERFECT!”

Tour dates begin on April 7th with a performance at Lizotte’s Restaurant at Kincumber. Tickets are $65.00 and include a three course set menu. Showtime is set for 9:30pm.

Look for the band in Sydney, April 11th at The Basement Club at Circular Quay, the landmark of the Australian music scene since the early 70’s. .

April 13th and 14th, the trio can be found at the 17th Annual East Coast Byron Bay Bluesfest, held at Red Devil Park. Line-up for the event will showcase more than 50 artists during the 5-day event, including David Gray, Public Enemy, Jackson Browne and Los Lobos among others. Ticket package information can be found by visiting www.bluesfest.com/au .

"This is something to get excited about…coming home for the first time in over two years to play the greatest festival in Australia, Byron Bay Bluesfest 2006,” states Young. “We'd like nothing more than to include Australia in our touring schedule each year, and a festival of this magnitude is the perfect introduction. C'mon Australia...turn it up!"

On April 15th they head to the rural hamlet of Taylors Arm on the North Coast of New South Wales, for the Pub with No Beer Brewery Bluegrass and Blues festival. Other acts include Bondi Cigars.

The band is currently recording their follow up to Weather and Water, which is due out sometime in 2006. To stay up to date with tour dates and the new album, visit www.thegreencards.com .

Nashville based Dualtone Music Group, Inc. is celebrating its 5th anniversary this year and includes a record label and publishing company. It is not Nashville's largest music company but is one of its best and remains staunchly independent. Dualtone is home to artists such as RobinElla, BR549, Bobby Bare, Carey Ott, Brett Dennen, Mary Karlzen, The Peasall Sisters, Charlie Robison, Jeff Black, Roger Creager and The Greencards, among others.
# # #
March 8 2006 - Eastern Awakenings
Hello Everybody!
I am writing from Boston today, as we are playing a show here tonight in Cambridge, MA. It is gorgeous here; a beautiful river is flowing just outside our hotel and there are lots of brainy people training for marathons in their chic running gear, putting all the rest of us to shame. College towns are fantastic, if only for the fact that they invigorate one's sense of ambition and drive.

This trip has been really fun so far. All the shows have been fantastic, and many of them were new towns for us. Played a surprisingly great show in a public library in Ringwood NJ, as part of their concert series. Nestled between the periodicals and the daily papers, we played for near 200 people in the middle of the afternoon. And not one person asked us to be quiet...

Just emerged from NY City, where we performed at Joe's Pub. Thanks to all who came to the concert and made our first show in Manhattan a success. The city is always stressful with parking and following directions etc, but it seemed to inject our playing with even more energy than usual. I was lucky enough to stay with my friends in the Upper East Side, so I caught some nightlife after the show. 3rd Ave was buzzing and it is true that this city never sleeps. With that kind of excitement I never actually want to go to sleep when I am there!

This run continues into the middle of March, and we will actually end in Cleveland on the 18Th. SXSW in Austin is also on the itinerary, so if you are in the A-Town on the 17Th, we will be performing at Momo's. Please check the tour page and see if we are visiting a town near you...
Take care, be careful in there!
February 7, 2006 Journal
Have pity on us here in the south as we suffer through
another bleak and grating wintertime(!). I am sitting
in my flat here in Nashville and I simply cannot
believe how warm it is - 65 Degrees! A sun-tan in
February! And compared to Texas, where we just were,
we are positively chilly! Austin was up to 85 on
Sunday! Unreal!

The drive from Austin back to Nashville was a
relatively painless one. Having memorised the cities
en route, the 900 mile trip seems to go a little
faster than it used to. There was a lot to be happy
about - we played our first Friday night show at
Greune Hall, a resounding success! We had over 400
people in the oldest dance hall in Texas, listening to
The Greencards!

We also played a great show in Dallas, at Poor David's
Pub. A music venue with quite a reputation, we really
felt like we connected with the Dallas audience, and
hope to return there as often as we can.

The pinnacle of the whole week was a fantastic show
at the Paramount Theatre. We shared the bill with the
legendary David Grisman, who wooed and wowed with the
crowd with his slinky and sultry mandolin playing. The
venue is a beautiful space, with a stunning ornate
ceiling that someone referred to as the 'Cistine
Chapel of Texas'. Having never seen the Cistine
through my own eyes I can't really comment on that
one...1300 people filled the room, yet it never felt
intimidating; probably because the audience was so
quiet, attentive and on our side from the start.

The music community in Austin has always been very
supportive of its members, and part of the proceeds of
this concert were given to the SIMS foundation, an
organisation which cares for the mental health of
Texas musicians. The chairman. Ray Benson of Asleep At
The Wheel fame, introduced the show, and his towering
presence added a reassuring touch to the show.

By the same token, there was a picking party
afterwards which also doubled as a benefit for Slim
Richey and Meaux Jo's house which burned down before
Christmas. Slim and I began our friendship in a French
airport back in '96, travelled through Switzerland,
Italy and Sicily together, and have been great friends
ever since. The man who is internationally known as
"The Most Dangerous Guitar Player in Texas (banned in
Pflugerville)", has many, many friends in the music
business, and consequently there was a great show at
the after party. In the upstairs of a beautiful house
near UT, we formed a circle on the hardwood floor,
pulled out our instruments, played some old Texas
swing standards, and blasted through some Jazz
changes. As the picking circle grew, I looked up to
find myself surrounded by Paul Glasse, Elana Fremerman
(Ex-Hot Club of Cowtown), mandolin wunderkind Sarah
Jarosz, and none other than the Dawg himself, David
Grisman! We had a ball! Truly one of the finest jams I
have ever been to - I wish i had taken some

We're off to Kentucky tomorrow - having just unpacked
my bags, it is almost time to re-pack them once more.
IF you live in Lexington, Newport, or Louisville we
would love to see you. And even if you don't, why not
get in your car and have a lovely road trip?! I'm
Southern California
We left out intrepid exploreers on the road to Southern California. They followed their dreams and a sinking sun along the long hard road to the west coast. We find them again as they close in on Los Angeles, with plenty of time for a 1:30 appearance at Napster...
Traffic police must have given up on the road that leads into LA from the south - we were doing 80 in the middle lane as all manner of cars shot past us doing 90 and up. I clenched the steering wheel a little tighter and steered us around the corners in what seemed like scene from the 1980s arcade game "Out Run". Except this was no red Ferarri - picture a white Chevvy van and the glamour disappears a little. There were lots of speed limit signs on the side of the road saying "70", '65' and '55', but evidently they are optional in this part of the world. It was only when we got to within 20 miles of the City that we realised why drivers act this way - they all knew that once they got to this point they would be bumper-to-bumper. And sure enough, we crawled the last 20 miles into a smoggy city, eating up a good hour and a half . Consequently we were late for our appointment with Napster, the online music service. This wasn't shocking for them however, I think they are used to bands being a bit frazzled by the conditions. They were very nice and gave us all the time we needed to get set up and do a performance for them. We chatted about the songs and how they came into existence, and the interviewer was very well versed in our history. I'm not sure exactly when it becomes available, but keep checking at Napster.com for our spot!

Opening a show for someone that I used to listen to in my younger days is always a surreal experience. Playing The Roxy in LA before Raul Malo was no different. He is a very nice chap, beautiful singer, and writer of great songs. He also has his own degree of star-pull, as Neil Diamond came to the show to see him. I got to see the back of Mr. Diamond's head as he walked past me backstage. He didn't hassle me for my autograph or anything, so I was happy he respected my boundaries. If you're reading this Neil and want a signed photo of me, just have your people call my people...Love ya, babe!

From the slick world of LA, we drove up to San Fransisco with all its charm and allure. En route, we played in Santa Cruz - with our legendary friends Sleepy John Sandidge and Betty. John has been mentioned in songs by Robert Earl Keen and Todd Snider, and he is a legend in the west coast music scene. We also performed on famed radio station KPIG, on the show "Please Stand By!" (thanks to Fleet for the yummy provisions!). We stayed at John and Betty's house on the edge of the magical Branciforte forest, an experience enjoyed my many musicians, and one of the highlights of my year. The next time I stay there I promise I will write a piece on their house. It is fascinating! I can only liken it to something out of a Harry Potter novel - nooks and crannies filled with fascinating objects, secret doors leading to secret passageways - a shrine to Emmylou Harris can be found in one. The last ime we stayed there, Betty placed an Ant Farm on the table, and we sat for hours and watched these little worker ants go about their business. Amazing!

The further north we travelled, the more layers we pulled out of the suitcase. This was a comfort to me (as usual), and a source of immense displeasure to my beach -loving Aussie comrades (as usual) . By the time we got to Seattle, there was a distinct chill in the air. A sharp intake of cold air can clean out the lungs and lighten the cheeks. We arrived there in time for Thanksgiving celebrations, which to be honest, has little meaning for us foreigners. But, our traveling guitar player, being an Alababma boy, inspired us to find a restaurant and do the whole 'Turkey Day' thing. Well, that was easier said than done, as this was Thanksgiving everyone had buggered off home and closed all the restaurants - with out even a thought to the foreigners...We lowered our standards, and eventually walked into a Denny's, for a pretty decent fare of turkey and spuds. Ironically enough, Matt, the only American of the group ordered eggs and pancakes. In fact, Matt then went onto explain how Thanksgiving didn't really mean that much to him anyway. So much for our show of cultural sensitivity!

Our last show was set for the night of the 25th, at the Tractor Tavern in downtown Seattle. We had played there once before as an opener, but to be honest, we were not expecting much. By the time sound check rolled around we were simply hoping to do the show as quick as we could and hit the road to Austin. We only knew one fan there - Michael Biggins - who had kind-heartedly agreed to put up some posters fro us and emailed his friends. This was one of our first attempts at getting a so-called 'Street-Team" to help us in a big city. Evidently, Michael is some kind of genius, as the people just started pouring in when the doors opened. In fact there was hardly any standing room left by the time we launched into "Life's A Freeway" to kick-off the set. As a great surprise to all of us, we played Seattle for the first time as a headliner to almost 200 people! Honestly, we were taken aback! If only they were all this easy!

Ending the tour on a high note was a blessing for all of us. In fact it took the sting out of our 2400 mile drive to Austin - we were happy for at least an hour! This drive to Texas was something I can only describe as truly horrid. 41 hours of driving! I refuse to dress it up, or play on the bright side for the reader's benefit - it was a mind-numbing and extremely painful experience. If I ever have to do it again, I won't. To add to our woes, we knew we had to cross the snowfall that had landed along the west, and there was no way around it. We had to cross the mountains at some point, and some bad weather was not going to stop us from getting to out destination.

Driving through mountain ranges at night can be scary - only the moon lights your way, and certain death lies at every corner. Add to this ice on the road and you have a sticky situation. In our case, we had to deal with severe strong winds, which eventually became a tornado the following day. I slowed the van to a reasonable pace, knowing that if the cars in front did slam on their brakes I was helpless in any case. My knuckles grew whiter as the wind began whipping up the snow banks, and firing them into the roadways, and directly in our path. With the snow rushing towards me in the pitch-dark night, I was temporarily blinded and severely disorientated at any given moment's. But to slam on the brakes in a panic filled second, would only have created disaster. The words of my Royal School of Motoring Driving Instructor filled my head like Obi Knobi : " For crying out loud, let out the clutch, Eamon" - not much help to be honest, since this was an automatic. So I just tried to stay calm and not get killed. I can say it was the hardest driving I have ever done. The hotels were all full of sensible people who had pulled off early evening, and so we had to keep going till three in the morning until we found a hotel that could put us up. All-in-all, an absolute nightmare.

So now here I sit, safe and warm in my friend's apartment here in Austin. We have had a few days off and now we approach the final straight - shows in Dallas, Houston, Bryan, and Austin. We were lucky enough to be invited to perform the KGSR Christmas Party at the Austin Music Hall. Sharing a dressing room with Buddy Miller was a blast, and rubbing shoulders with Kathleen Edwards was a treat. I think the whole band fell in love with her that night - she's cool!

Believe it or not, the year is almost up. Time to deck the halls, put up the Christmas tree, and dangle some mistletoe over your favourite sweet-heart. I hope you enjoyed the news of our latest shennanigans, and hope to see you at a show sometime this month!
Good Christmas cheer to all!
Eamon's Journal
December 1, 'Out West!'
How do I explain the lack of a journal for the past 6 weeks? Would you believe me if I said I had experienced chronic writer's block? No, I wouldn't believe it either...What about the old school homework classic of "the dog ate it!"? Pretty pathetic attempt really...What can I say, I am sorry for not having written in such a while, but I am back in writing mode now and will now attempt to fully update you on the trials and tribulations of The Greencards. In fact there is so much to write about that I am going to have to serialise the account into two or three separate journals - keep checking back for the next installment, should be up in a few days.

A tour to the west coast always delights this band , but simple geography dictates a grueling schedule - this trip proved no exception. To get to southern California, we were routed through Arizona and New Mexico. Once established in San Diego, we played in and around LA, a new experience every time I visit. From there we headed north through the great San Fransisco, then to Portland, and finally ending our travels in Seattle after Thanksgiving celebrations.The towns and venues were often new to us, and it was with a sense of in-trepidation that we set sail on this trip, but I have to say, we were all blown away by some of the crowds that showed up in places we thought we would be playing only to the bar staff. It is amazing to us that people like us enough all the way out on the West Coast to come out and hear us. Thanks to everyone who took a chance on us for the first time - I hope you weren't disappointed! (No use asking for your money back if you were - we spent it all on gas for the return journey...)

The Blue Door in Oklahoma City was our first stop - an intimate venue, custom built for attentive audiences, and surrounded by some of the best Thai and Vietnamese Restaurants anywhere in the south. I don't know what magnetic charm Oklahoma has on these immigrants, but the results are there for all to enjoy - take my word for it! Gregg has run the club for many years now, and welcomed us with open arms. A fine crowd showed up that night, and it was a great omen for the start of the tour. With a smile on our faces we got back into the van and headed west...

Arizona is known for its dry, arid landscapes, and even in November, we were in danger of getting a sun-tan if not too careful. Our show in Cave Creek was a mystery to us all until we got there - one of those dates where you keep checking the map and the itinerary to make sure you haven't made a mistake. Not knowing what to expect, we negotiated our way through a swarm of Hell's Angels to arrive at the Cave Creek Coffee Company, and pulled up outside a long wooden fence with vintage Americana signs outside. Pulling back the large wooden gate, we stumbled in to reveal a fantastic outside theatre, complete with a wonderful sound system. Inside was an excellent cafe, and a top-notch wine bar. The owner, David, has managed to bring some fine acts there, including Shawn Mullins and Robert Earl Keen. The latter by the way, managed to get David arrested for noise pollution as the band was judged too loud on their encore of 'The Road Goes On Forever' - those Keen boys, nothing but trouble (just kidding Bill, settle down..)

This Gig had all the ingredients of a 'perfect' show. For those of you wondering what the criteria is for such a thing, let me be more precise: The weather was fantastic, and in the beautiful afternoon sun we were shaded by massive trees. There was Hi-speed wireless in the cafe, allowing Kym and I the chance to follow our national football (that's soccer for the natives) teams on their path to the World Cup Finals. We had unlimited free food, and more importantly free wine at the bar. We were graced by a wonderfully warm crowd who even knew some of our songs and sang along! The band played great and everyone enjoyed themselves immensely! The icing on the cake was the accommodation provided - two luxury chalets on the local Golf course, complete with indoor Jacuzzi (not exploited enough I am afraid to say). And the real cherry came when we ventured back there that evening to hear Shawn Mullins perform (exceptional talent), and sip a few more glasses of wine! This was a happy band, people! A rather shallow band yes, but content all the same!

We left our warm beds the following morning to find California, and face the challenge of Los Angeles. Little did we know what was in store for us...
On the Road Again
The Greencards to do Hollywood and the O.C.
The Greencards continue to criss-cross the United States on what seems
like a never-ending journey according to Eamon's journal.  During the
rest of October they will play gigs all the way from New Hampshire to
South Carolina on the East Coast.  And then they head out for a West
Coast tour in November that will take them from Arizona to Washington
State. A most interesting pair of performances that has just been added
to their tour schedule will take place in San Juan Capistrano at the far
end of Orange County, California and up on the Sunset Strip in Hollywood
in mid-November when The Greencards appear with Raul Malo - formerly the
lead singer of The Mavericks. The band's complete gig guide can be
viewed at http://thegreencards.com/tour.html
Eamon's Journal
Sunday October 9, I-57 (Southern Illinois)
Birds fly south for the wintertime. The Greencards on the other hand, drive 700 miles north to Green Bay, Wisconsin. Autumn in this part of the country is a beautiful sight, the leaves turn brown, and the winds herald the changing of the seasons. I always feel closer to the UK when I am up here – maybe it is just the weather, or perhaps the sense of colonial history is stronger here. Either way, it feels great to put on a hat and scarf and walk in the lively winds that leave you with rosy cheeks. My upbeat attitude to this climate is sadly not shared by my Aussie comrades – at the merest hint of a gust of a wind they are to be found wrapped in thick sweaters and lying beneath a huge blanket. Our sensitivities are polar opposites, they love the warm weather, and I love the cold (I have finally stopped complaining about the heat). Controlling the thermostat in the van is the source of many a lively debate!

Kicking us into gear this trip, is the young Matt Wingate on guitar. Originally from Alabama, Matt evidently has played guitar since birth, and his skills abound. He is an incredible player with enormous potential, and plays very clean with fantastic control. The band is in a good spot right now, and we will be working up new tunes and throwing some new songs into the mix. This trip should be fun!

The advantage of sitting in a van for twelve hours is that you can simply listen to music and enjoy it. You don’t have to play along with it, read the credits or analyze it – but simply listen and enjoy. Unlike being at home, the phone is not ringing off the hook; there are no errands to do, and no feeling that you should be elsewhere being ‘productive’. We have just listened to some great records, providing a great soundtrack for our journey north. In case you are curious, here is a rundown of what The Greencards are listening to at the moment:

Elvis Costello, “My Aim Is True” – Brilliant first record from this Englishman (born to Irish parents). Kym has just finished his autobiography, and has some interesting stories to accompany the songs. You can not listen to this album and not sing your heart out, especially on songs like “Welcome To The Working Week”, and “Alison”.

Jon Randall, “Walking Among The Living Again” – Fantastic voice, great musicians, and some great songs on Jon’s new record. Features the monster hit for Brad Paisley and Alison Krauss ‘Whiskey Lullaby’.

Strength In Numbers, “The Telluride Sessions” – A milestone in modern acoustic music, this instrumental album may never be topped. Written and performed by Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Bela Fleck, Edgar Meyer, and Mark O’Connor, these tunes set a standard in composition and performance that is still unrivalled, and inspires countless musicians. (Aside: The Asst. Engineer on this record was none other than our good mate and Engineer hero Gary Paczosa).

Eliza Gilkinson, “Hard Times in Babylon” – Native of Austin, this singer-songwriter holds her own with anyone in the genre. Carol is a huge fan of this record and it’s not difficult to see why – heartfelt singing, hard hitting songs, and tasty musicianship. Includes the tribute to Eliza’s father “The Beauty Way”.

These are four great records, and we all sang along as we motored north. No complaints about the soundtrack on this trip, now if we can just get out of this awful van, we might be able to make some music of our own!
Take care, I’ll be in touch soon…

October 6th, 2005. Nashville, TN.
The clock has just turned over 1am, and I have finally finished packing for our next trip to the northeast. I am sitting here in East Nashville in my dining room with suitcases, instruments, hanging clothes and all kinds of things – not exactly travelling light, are we Eamon. When did I become a fanatical packer? I must have re-checked my lists and bags at least three times in the past two hours! It wasn’t that long ago that the night before a tour was spent out carousing and indulging in general hooliganism, aided by a beverage or two! Perhaps old - age is creeping up on me, because the wildest thing I did tonight was boil the kettle and have a cup of Chai Tea. I still haven’t decided whether this newfound maturity is really for the best….

I am glad ye have come back to the journal – we had some time off, which we spent becoming human again. Obviously I was tempted to sit in the van for five hours a day, just for old-time’s sake, but somehow I resisted the urge. Instead I caught up on lots of business stuff, went for a few jogs around the neighbourhood, and rediscovered my joy of swimming! A pair of goggles and some flippers, and I’m as happy as Larry! I used to swim in Austin, especially in the outdoor pools, but this was my first time to go swimming this year! I also spent a lot of time with my new French fiddle (an 1863 Nicholas Caussain to be exact), and I’m very excited to bring it out on the road with us. All in all, I could have stayed home for longer, but I am eager to get back out there and make some music again.

San Francisco was our playground for the weekend past; we were invited to play the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival. This is an incredible event that takes place in the Golden Gate Park once a year; it’s a free festival for all and sundry. Many musicians say it is their favourite gig of the year, and there is certainly no shortage of folks who want to perform. This year brought Dolly Parton, Joan Baez, Robert Earl Keen, Del McCoury and many others. After our set was over we went to hear Mr. Keen play, and were fortunate enough to sit in on a couple of songs. I hope there will be some pictures of this event, particularly as I was wearing a rather fetching Cowboy hat given to me by none other than Sleepy John Sandidge. I chose not to wear it to the after-party, much to Sleepy’s disappointment, but it was a great time nonetheless. Lots of great food, music, and Californian wine – this was a happy band!

It is now really late and we are leaving at 7 in the morning, I hope the pictures can give you a good idea of how the festival looked. Take it from me that it is a brilliant festival, and you should plan to go next year –and it’s FREE! I am going to sign off now and get some kip before we start our next adventure. Have a look at the tour dates and perhaps we will be performing near you somewhere.
Off to bed now, see you soon!
Sep 19, 2005,
Nashville, TN
Our last shows with Kasey Chambers were a blast! The entire month of August was spent with Kasey, and I hope some of you who read this got to see those shows. It was a wonderful experience for all of us, and great for the band itself. Kasey is a wonderful spirit, with an infectious love of people. I was amazed by her ability to open her heart to her audience every night, both in her songs and her stories. If I learn to be half that brave in the future I will be very happy.

We said farewell to the Australian crew as they headed home across the ocean, and we pointed our little van south and headed to Texas for a week of shows. Our spirits were dampened by the news of Hurricane Katrina, and the formal mass evacuation of New Orleans. We listened on the radio as Ray Nagin, the Mayor of Louisiana, foretold the destruction that Katrina would leave in her wake: Every house would experience wall and roof damage, apartment buildings faced partial collapse, and mass flooding would remain for months. Most noticeable was the lack of drama in his voice as he told us this – this was not to sensationalise the events, he was simply stating the cold hard truth. I am not sure anybody could really grasp how events would unfold and the total devastation that would visit upon New Orleans. Families left their homes in droves, as the highways were jammed with hundreds of thousands of vehicles fleeing for their lives. The only vehicles headed in were news crews and the ominously eerie fire trucks. As many people went to bed that night, in the calm before the storm, they knew that when they awoke their lives would be turned upside down.

Texas offered a safe haven for many evacuees, many of whom had no idea when they could return home. Whole Foods took on it s misplaced staff (as did many other companies), and the Dome in Houston opened its doors to over ten thousand people. Austin demonstrated its amazing sense of community by creating donation stations all over town, and local radio station KGSR led a fund drive that generated over $50,000. That same afternoon we headed in to their studios to perform on-air for their esteemed DJ, Jody Denberg. This man has interviewed everyone from Paul McCartney to Yoko Ono, so it was a big thrill to do this. As the studio doors closed, the lights went down and we went on air. Only a single candle flickered in the centre of the room as we played our songs and Jody danced to his delight in the corner. It was easy to forget the thousands of people out in radio-land, because it felt we were just playing for Jody. With fingers crossed we are hoping to appear on the KGSR Broadcast CD in November – we’ll let you know if we make the cut!

As I write this from my home in Nashville, we find ourselves in the unusual position of being home for the next two weeks! We have spent an eternity on the road between touring with Bob Dylan and then Kasey Chambers; in fact since May 20th; we have all spent less than six nights in our own beds. We should have bought stock in various hotel chains, because we have seemingly kept many of them in business. My panorama for the past four months has been the American Interstate, and I have to tell you folks, it is more than a little boring. Granted there are lots of exits, and lots of fast food restaurants to choose from (more of a curse than a blessing), but these roads are invariably straight and ugly. California has the prettiest highways I have seen in this country, with colourful flowers in the middle – but this is definitely the exception. For the next two weeks I do not have to worry about booking hotels, collating receipts, packing the van, or even washing the windscreen! Instead, I get to remain at home, do the jobs that I have to do, and if all goes well, spend hours practising my new fiddle. It’s a French instrument from the 1860s, with a beautiful smooth tone. I hope to have it out on the road by next month, but before then I really need to spend lots of hours in my practise room with my new toy. It is a little like getting to know your new girlfriend before you introduce her to your friends – I hope we will be together for a long time!

We spent the last weekend at Winfield, Kansas, for the Walnut Valley Festival, a renowned festival amongst music fans and especially guitar players. Tommy Emanuel and Pat Flynn were on the bill, as were several other great players from the acoustic world. The crowds were wonderful – but that is really only one half of the story of Winfield. At night, when the last act finishes, the fun is to be found at the campgrounds, where thousands of folks gather in a commune like environment, hosting their own picking sessions and providing food and drinks to all visitors. Saturday night was a full moon, and it lit up an amazing hive of activity in the dark and mysterious grounds. There were people picking their instruments everywhere the eye could see. Even in the ‘streets’ of the grounds, people would just form circles and impromptu bands would strike up for the night. I stumbled upon a Swing site, where we played Django tunes until the wee hours. I also found a ‘folk orchestra’ complete with hammer dulcimers, where people played Irish tunes in unison for hours upon end. My greatest find however was surely the “Comedy Stage” (more of a make-shift platform between caravans), where people signed up to do their best stand-up comedy routine. My personal favourite was a poor chap (obviously on some form of hallucinogenic), who at first cried in to the mic, next offered a poor imitation of Tom Waits, screamed to the crowd “Why do you hate me?” and finally stormed off-stage to be struck by a custard-pie in the face by the compeer. I can only tell you how uncomfortable the entire audience felt as this guy embarrassed himself – it was truly one of the most memorable performances I have ever witnessed. My professional outlook may never be the same again…

And so I must bid farewell for a couple of weeks. Time off is much needed in this camp, and when we return it will be with much vigour and renewed enthusiasm. The three of us have plans to get away from it all, and I daresay may actually squeeze in a little holiday before our October tour begins. Have a look at our schedule for the rest of the year and see if there is anywhere you can catch us. I hope you can make it!
Enjoy the rest of the month, and all that it has to offer.
Take care my friends,
Grand Ole Opry
The Greencards will make their Grand Ole Opry debut this Friday, September 9 2005. The Nashville show begins at 7:30 pm Central Daylight Time (10:30 am Saturday in Sydney) and can be heard live via the Internet at http://www.wsmonline.com/  . Opry shows are also archived on WSM On-line for those that can not tune in to the live broadcast. Catherine Britt will be on the Saturday show. Exact performance times can be found on http://www.opry.com/TicketsAndInformation/ThisWeek.aspx  later in the week.
Eamon's Journal
August 20 - Interstate Highway 80, somewhere in Iowa.
"A Tour Bus...My kingdom for a Tour Bus!" Perhaps these are not his exact words, but if Shakespeare were our tour manger, I think he might have uttered these words! If any kind millionaire out there should wish to donate a brand new Prevost to us, then please do not delay any longer - do your good deed now! Our white van is a decent vehicle, but with a 1350 mile drive ahead of us, my mind wanders to the luxury of the tour bus. Imagine the space, the Tellys, the DVD players, the fridge...a far cry from this bench seat upon which I am perched this afternoon. The trick is to simply remain sane while on these drives, and that pursuit can take many forms.

Of course, one has to question the sanity of anyone who does this for a living. But whatever limited quantity I began with, I long to keep. These long drives offer eons of time, and limited ways to amuse ones self. There is no space to practise fiddles and mandolins, so one has to find other methods. This is a rundown of how to survive such a long drive:

The most obvious source is the radio/CD player. Since we are the only band in the world that does not own an iPod between any of us, we have become bored with our CD collection. Fortunately we have XM Radio, which offers us 150 stations, and out of which we listen to about ten! The jewel in their crown lies at Channel 131 - The BBC World Service. A great source of comfort to us subjects of the Crown, we turn there for world news, world-class journalism and the footy scores! Other channels offer bluegrass music, country classics, and pop music of all persuasions. Life would be very boring without this little digital unit.

Ears do eventually tire of music, so when we want to appear as intelligent beings, we turn to printed matter - books and magazines. This may include everything from The Wall Street Journal, right down to celebrity gossip publications like "People Weekly". Sometimes, one has to know what kind of flip-flops Jennifer Aniston is wearing, while cavorting on the beach with Vince Vaughn. I am actually being serious, I really need to know...Carol is responsible for keeping everyone up to date on this kind of subject matter, and thankfully so, otherwise I would be totally out of touch with modern culture. Kym is currently reading the Dylan Chronicles, Which has received rave reviews from everyone I have spoken to. Kym will no doubt deliver some amusing anecdotes when he's done. Personally, I am absorbed in an amazing book by Bill Bryson: "A Short History of Nearly Everything". This is a rough guide to Science, which is so easy to comprehend that even I, as un-scientific as I am, can get something from it. I have become an expert on everything from planet formations to ancient fossils. Well recommended!

My latest source of amusement comes from this very handy book of Fun Crosswords from those intelligent folks at The New York Times. I have often tried the puzzles in the Sunday paper, often to no avail, but this is more my kind of level. It really gets fun when everyone gets involved and we all try to figure out the clue. It only takes one word to unlock one whole corner of the jigsaw. As a last resort, I have sent out a few text messages for 28 Across: "Airedale, for instance". I will not rest until I have it...

These are the things which keep us alive on the road. If one is to avoid becoming a lethargic and inert mass that exists on the back seat, then you must find, or at least invent some activities. Eating can become a source of entertainment out here, and that is dangerous territory. They say you are what you eat, and for a while I was beginning to resemble a large Cheeseburger and an ice cream sundae. Thankfully I pulled back at the brink, and now enjoy jogging around these new towns we visit. Perhaps it a symptom of this mammoth drive today that I think any normal person might actually enjoy what I am writing about. I may look back at this journal and say "That's the point where I really lost touch with reality..." But this truly is a glimpse of life on the road with The Greencards. It's not all glamour, people - often it is a large coffee and a good book.
Eamon's Journal
August 16 - Newport, KY
The key to a happy life on the road, it seems, is to simply stop thinking about going home. Our lives take place here on the road, in these American towns, in motels, in dressing rooms. One has to adapt to the reality that life hands you; wherever we happen to be on any given day is as familiar as any other day. If The Greencards is a ship on the ocean, then we are out on the high seas with no land in sight. We just keep sailing onwards...

Ann Arbor, Michigan, is home to one of the finest venues in the country - The Ark. we played a fantastic show there last night, a great thrill for everyone. The day began with a lovely stroll around the College town, which boasts wonderful architecture, and more importantly, great shopping! Retail therapy may be shallow and short-term, but it suits me down to the ground! Situated on Main Street, nestled between crowds of evening diners on the promenade, lies The Ark - a refuge for all manner of musicians, and music lovers. The audience sits very close to the stage, almost in living room fashion, yet somehow this intimacy does not overwhelm, but instead encourages and delights the performers. It honestly felt like we could do no wrong by this audience, we could have happily stayed there for hours. Of course we had to make way for Kasey, who insisted on doing her show (!). I know she had a great time also, and the audience was in the palm of her hand all evening. All in all, a wonderful experience.

And so it is on now to Milwaukee, a town whose name itself makes me thirsty. We are over the halfway point now, and having an absolute blast. Lots more music to come!
Take Care,

Eamon's Journal
August 11 - Louisville , KY
Touring with Kasey Chambers is such fun - plain and simple! The crowds have been enormously enthusiastic, and given us a great response. A lot of these people have only seen Kasey play once before, and yet they know most of the songs and sing along with the choruses. It's been great for us to bask in that glow, and play our music each night; life feels good at the moment!

We began in Baltimore, and slowly we work our way towards the west coast; we have hit North Carolina, Kentucky, and proceed to Ohio tomorrow. Our partner in crime in this endeavour is our good friend Rod McCormack, one of Australia's finest guitar players. Rod truly is a world-class musician (sings, writes and plays magnificently), and has won several US and Australian championships to prove it. He is playing the set like he owns it, and is giving the three of us a musical run for our money. On top of all that, he is the perfect guy to sit down with and share a bottle of red wine of an evening (as I did a few nights ago in Chapel Hill). Great guy, great player - Rod McCormack!

Kasey appears to have solved the musicians problem of being away from her family - she has brought half of them with her. The patriarch, Bill, is a great singer and Artist in his own right, and plays a mean rock 'n' roll guitar. Her brother, Nash, runs the sound, produces her records, and serves as Manager! Normally, Kasey also brings her Mother, but she didn't make to the U.S. this time. As far as I can see, the net result of this is a wonderful atmosphere of camaraderie and togetherness. This is truly a "band" effort, with the bonds between everyone very strong. They are also very open, and have welcomed us in with open arms. We are just as likely to be found on their bus drinking a glass of red, as we are to be found anywhere else on this trip. All in all, not a bad place to be!

Lots more shows ahead of us, and lots more fun!. I hope some of you can make it to these shows because, once Kasey goes back to Australia it could be a while before she's back.

Aug 3, Baltimore

Bob and Willie? Never heard of them! All good things must come to an end, and our summer tour with these legends was no exception. It was sad when it ended, I have to admit, but life goes on. . We had some time off, and the band feels refreshed, re-energised, and ready to hit the road again! We are looking at some really fun shows for August, and it feels good to be out here playing our music again.

Our Texas shows went really well, and the crowds were amazing. The line outside the Saxon Pub was so long I thought Bob Schneider was playing. Everyone in Texas is really supportive of us, it feels great to play there. Hopefully that means they have forgiven us for leaving them in January...We played a lot of radio stations while we were there, including KGSR, KUT and KNBT. It's very surreal to be driving in your car, chilling out to the radio, when all of a sudden you hear The Greencards! Its slightly weird, but I'll take it - no complaints here!

Our tour this month takes us ALL over the U.S. - we start here in Baltimore, MD, and end up in Santa Cruz, California. Our poor little van will be put to the test on this jaunt, so I'd better stay up on the oil changes - every twelve thousand miles, whether it needs it or not!

We are opening shows for the wonderful Kasey Chambers, playing some great venues including The Rams Head in Baltimore, Brooklyn Park, and many more. Have a look at our tour page to see if we are near you or any of your friends! Kasey and her band have a long history with Kym and Carol, so there is a great atmosphere on this trip. I met Kasey last year when I went to Australia with the band; she's wonderful to get along with and an amazing singer. I am still a little nervous around her, but hope to dispense with such formalities as soon as possible!

So stay tuned for more journal entries - I will be posting as often as possible. Thanks to all those in Texas who told me they enjoyed the Dylan journals; I'll just keep writing and hope ye enjoy a little slice of our life on the road. See ye back here shortly...
Eamon's Journal
 Cedar Rapids, Iowa 
June 9
It was no great surprise to see corn on the menu tonight - there is no shortage of the stuff up here. Its everywhere! But I should say it was probably the best corn I have ever tasted. It must have a healthy effect on the population here because the crowd tonight was incredible! From the first note, the people were on their feet and dancing along with the music. Some nights are just like that - it lifts the band, and everyone plays great. One of my favourite nights of the whole tour.
Our new CD "Weather and Water" has been out for over a week, we have all been anxiously scouring the papers for reviews. We haven't seen any real stinkers yet, so that's a good sign. The Austin Statesman wrote a great album review which made us all smile. There have been some other good ones too (check out the reviews section of our website it you're interested...) Some people have written in saying that they have seen the video for "Time" on CMT, in fact one person claims to have TIVO'd it so they can watch it over and over again. That might be going a little overboard ...We are really proud of the album, and definitely put our hearts and soul into it. Let us know if you like it!
This year was without a doubt my favourite July 4th in America. The entire production crew played a game of softball at the local park in Tulsa - a very competitive ritual for the past 5 years, we were told. They had special tee-shirts printed for the event and we were split into two teams. Robbie and I were cast into 'Jen's Hooters', while Kym and Carol became part of Red's Roosters. Any cheeky connotations regarding the team names were purely unintentional - though I was slightly suspicious of the Roosters' slogan: Don't Call Us Cocks!)
The competitive spirit of the game was fuelled by Jules' hospitality table - particularly the Mint Mojitos, which had been the downfall of many a past opening act - I mention no names... I literally had two sips of this concoction and felt the ground move under me - wisely I switched back to water. We played a nine-inning game, and saw the 'Roosters' crush 'Jens Hooters' into a dis-spirited heap. MVP award went to our good friend Kym Warner for his Grand Slam straight out of the park. Those bloody Aussies, always there when you don't need them...If I had been on the winning side, I would probably have written a lot more on this subject. But the truth is we were robbed, and I am still a little sore over it. Let's just move on with our lives, shall we? (Oh, and the sun was in my eyes...)
I felt a little sad tonight as I watched Bob play "Maggie's Farm" - only two more shows to go. It has been the time of my life, and the band has grown a great deal because of it. But there is no excuse for getting melancholic just yet. I am going to enjoy the last two shows as much as I can, and celebrate what has been the opportunity of a lifetime.
See you soon,
Australian festival
Music Down Under Performers September 2005 in Nashville:
The Greencards Catherine Britt Warren Fahey,  Pru Clearwater Nessa Morgan Felicity,
Photos at the Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson Tour
June 26th, Eastlake, Ohio
In a feeble attempt at hyperbole, I mentioned to one of the merch-girls that it felt like we had been on the road for at least a month - she quickly informed me that it had in fact been five weeks since we left our homes. In truth, its hard to say at this point whether it feels like five weeks or five months. Back in May, we were battling the torrential storms of Florida, twisting ankles, and anxiously trying to remember the names of all the new faces in the entire organisation. My biggest anxiety came from trying to talk to thousands of people without tripping over my tongue and making an 'eejit' out of myself. It's hard not to be nervous in this situation, but only after I forgave myself for making the odd mistake did I actually get a grip on how to communicate to this many people.
Six thousand miles of driving has now taken us to the opposite end of the continent; we are on the shores of Lake Eerie tonight, in the great state of Ohio. A night without a gig, away from the stage allows everyone to de-pressurize and re-discover some of the qualities of being human. Nothing fancy, just simple pleasures that do not make very interesting reading. Kym has just opened a bottle of Shiraz and can be found plucking his mandolin in his room. Carol was last seen ordering a Chicken Salad with French Fries - a rather feeble attempt at healthy eating if you ask me! My room-mate, Robbie, has been waxing lyrical on the pattern of tradition and progress in American societal conventions. He appears to have reached a respite at this point in time, allowing me the chance to sit here and ponder the last weeks events, scribbling some thoughts down for anyone who cares to read it. I have my stereo on my table, and just popped in Coldplay's new album - brilliant!
Any lover of city-life must visit New York City; the city that never sleeps feels more like a city than anywhere else I've ever been. Everyone was excited about the chance to spend a day in Manhattan; Sirius Radio had asked us to come into their studio and perform some songs, and we were thrilled at the opportunity. Feeling very impressed with ourselves, we drove out Chevvy Van across the George Washington Bridge, and began looking for a parking spot in Manhattan. It didn't take us long to realise this was not very realistic, and probably not very safe considering our musical equipment and luggage. So we tried the parking lots instead - which proved just as futile. No one would take this behemoth of a vehicle! Its long wheel-base and high-roof made us every attendant's worst nightmare. After driving around for two hours we simply had to get 'the hell out of Dodge' and rescheduled our appearance. Major stress!
Manhattan is such a crowded and maniacal place that it leaves you with the impression that there is no time for any favours - either you learn to deal with it, or it will spit you out. So, a little wiser to the conditions, we drove back to town two days later with a more informed plan of attack. As recommended by Willie Nelson's band, we stayed outside of Manhattan, by the Lincoln Tunnel, and at 8am we caught the shuttle in to the Big Apple. Victory was ours! And so it was, in our typical fashion, we marched from Times Square to our destination with our instruments in hand and Carol's bass Amp wrapped in cardboard trailing behind on a make-shift luggage trolley. Triumphant, we arrived at out destination on the Avenue of the Americas, and felt jolly pleased with ourselves!
High up on the 36th floor, the glass doors opened, and we were ushered inside the very swanky offices of Sirius Radio, very soon to be the home of Howard Stern! We played and chatted for our host, and very nearly ran into Oasis, there doing interviews for their show that night in Madison Sq. Gardens. Disappointingly, they did not stop in for our autographs - no doubt they were a little nervous to be in the company such a well known acoustic band. We forgave them...
And what would a visit to NYC be without a little sight-seeing? Not very exciting, that's what! We all left in separate directions, with different agendas in mind. Kym and Carol had dinner on their minds, Robbie slung his guitar on his back and disappeared down Sixth Ave. I simply strolled uptown, amazed to discover how close we were to Central Park. It only takes a minute to get inside the park, and the din of activity that is NYC actually fades away to reveal not exactly tranquillity, but at least a less unnerving din. People were jogging, walking, chatting, sitting, and simply taking time for themselves. I wonder whether NYC could actually function as well as it does if not for this little haven of natural park-life. How it remains preserved and undeveloped is amazing to me, and a credit to the city itself. New York City is many things to many people, but I am always astounded by its spirit and sense of purpose. I love it.
By the time we left, we were sad, but ready to say good-bye to the City. We had a great time there, saw some sights, some old dear friends, and Kym fulfilled his life-long ambition of eating a papaya hot-dog. Other addicts of Seinfeld may recognise this desire, but the rest of us were baffled. To stay any longer would have tempted fate - nothing had yet gone wrong, none of our gear had been pinched and everyone was safe; best to leave on a good note. The band is playing well, and in great spirits. Personally I never have felt more comfortable on the road. All I want to do is keep rolling across America, playing to great summer crowds. At least for a little while longer, I can.
June 21, Norwich, CT
Baseball is not the most popular sport in the U.K. In fact, I've only been to one baseball game in my life - three years ago, I went to a Dodgers game in LA (funnily enough it was with Kym, Carol and out good friend Rodney Hayden). What struck me the most was the relaxed nature of being a spectator. You can just chill out, drink some soda-pop and eat some hot dogs. I wish I had been more of a fan as a youngster, as some of these stadiums might mean more to me
Take today for example. I am sitting here in Norwich CT, at the Dodd Stadium. Unknown to us, this was the original home of the Yankees, back in the days when they were in the minor leagues. Old photos of the stadium adorn the local hotels - it is a major tourist attraction. And yet, as I sit here in the grand-stands, watching the stage fill up with musical equipment, I am slightly oblivious to the history and significance of this building. All around me are stories, legends and ghosts of the past; the air is swimming with history.
And yet, I know that in a few hours when the main floodlights go down simultaneously, when the poet laureate of Rock and Roll takes the stage, when the first strains of "Maggie's Farm" are heard by seven thousand people, these grounds will transform into a festival of music, and the only thing that will matter will be the magic of song. I think the spirits here will be singing along...
June 7 - Greenville SC
Hello again! Thanks to all the well-wishers who wrote in after my ankle debacle. It is healing nicely, and should be completely fixed in a week or so. Hobbling around baseball grounds has not been fun, with everything taking three times the amount of time it normally does. With all of that grief going on, I haven't written in a while - but I am back now (sorry for the lame excuse)!
We underwent a slight personnel change this week, as we said goodbye to Robbie for one week (he had a pre-existing gig in Italy), and welcomed the mighty Rich Brotherton into the fold.   Rich is better known for his exploits in the Robert Earl Keen band, and has produced his last two records. However, few people realise that Rich effectively put The Greencards together; Kym needed a fiddle player for an independent project, and Rich set me up. Rich is a happy soul and a great player with lots of passion. We've all really enjoyed playing again.
This past week has taken us to some good southern towns - Greenville, Savannah and Birmingham. The weather has been much better, with less thunderstorm action. We have definitely experienced some southern summer steaminess, and everyone's hair has become really curly! Despite this fascination with our appearance, we have been practising and working on the show. Our set has evolved into a much brisker and fast-paced performance. With only 30 minutes in front of this many people, we simply have to belt out the songs and try to knock 'em out. We have a new tune called 'Sparrow's Reel' - a lively fiddle tune that gets the crowd jigging, and that old chestnut 'You Pulled Me Out', which never fails to rev up their energy. We have had some really happy crowds this week!
Our fortunes have also improved since the great harmonica player from Willie Nelson's band - Micky Raphael - has been playing on Carol's song "Movin' On". Micky has played on countless Willie records, as well as some of my favourite Emmylou Harris albums from the late 70s.  It has been surreal to look across stage and find this unassuming chap playing in our band! I suppose that is one of the treasures of touring at this level: you get to confront the mortality of your heroes. After all, Bob and Willie are just people like you and I. They just chose the right career and worked hard. That's something we are all capable of, we simply have to stick at it.
Young Gjersoe will be back with us shortly, and we venture into the northern territories, hitting towns in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Maryland. Should be fun! Keep checking back for more journals!
All the Best,
Exciting News for The Greencards
The Greencard's new album will be released in the States on June 28th and Australia July 4th.
Spring's here and so are the allergies! Down here in Nashville it's renown as the allergy capital but luckily we'll be touring for most of the season.
We received the news that The Greencards will be touring with Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson this summer.  The tour starts May 25th - July 11th taking in 30 shows across the US.  Our booking agent called while we were in Annapolis MD (having a rather average day, nothing was going right) and said "are you sitting down?" my response was "is it good or bad news cause I don't wanna know about it if it's bad". When he said, you guys have got the Bob and Willie Tour this summer, my reply was "WHO THE HELL IS BOB AND WILLIE?" To me it sounded like a couple of radio DJ's, Bob and Willie... We didn't even know Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson were touring together this year, and more to the point, that The Greencards were being considered for it.

The icing on the cake for us personally will be the fact that we commence touring with Kasey Chambers here in the States in August 2005.   For the whole month we get to hang out with Kasey, Bill and the band, and Kasey has kindly allowed us to have Rod McCormack become an honourary member of The Greencards for the month.. I truly don't think I could have planned a better summer.

We're all done in the studio recording our second album. The new album,
"Weather and Water" will be released sometime before the Bob and Willie tour (we hear from our record company that it will also be released at the same time down there).  The title track was written by Jedd Hughes, with Jedd also adding the harmony to the song...it means a lot to us to have Jedd on the album again. The first single off the record is "Time"...we hope the video will be done by May...I can't believe we'll be making our first video!

The studio we recorded the album at was Gary Paczosa's home studio (if you could call it that).   It's a gorgeous house here in Nashville originally owned by the great fiddle player, Mark O'Connor who then sold it to Alison Krauss.   It was very exciting to not only be recording in the house where Alison ate and slept but where she and Nickel Creek made their amazing albums like New Favorite, Lonely Runs Both Ways, This Side...I even found a lyric sheet for "Spit On A Stranger" under the lounge, which is a song Nickel Creek put on their last album.

A lot has happened good and bad in the last few months...the move here to Nashville and moving in with Jedd, that's good....unfortunately someone broke in and stole my house and car keys and later that night stole our car, that was bad.  Kind of freaky knowing that someone who is not welcome has been in your house and tampered with your property.  All guitars and mandolins are safe and untouched!

We're back home in Nashville now for 3 days before heading up to Ann Arbor, Michigan for a couple of shows, then heading across to Chicago to do a show with John Cowan...he's one of our favorites.  The end of this month we head out on the road with Tony Rice for some shows, finishing up in North Carolina for Merlefest (  www.merlefest.org  ).
Our big plan is to come home this year...we'd love it if we could come, see the families and maybe play a show or two...our fingers are crossed.
Carol Young
The Greencards
Click Below - More about "The Greencards"
Artist Report
The Greencards moving to Nashville from Austin Texas
It's been a great year. Kym, Eamon and I have played some great shows and driven thousands of miles, met some wonderful people and one of us has even become a vegetarian!

The release of our debut album, Movin' On has taken us across the US many times including an east coast tour with Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis then on another occasion, a 3 week tour with the wonderful Robert Earl Keen and his band. We've also hit California a couple of times...this was by far the highlight of the year for us with Kym parents, Trev and Marty Warner joining us in San Francisco before heading out to Strawberry Music Festival in Yosemite National Park.   September in CA is spectacular...this intimate festival of 4000 people (which is sold out 12 months in advance each year) runs for 4 days...once you arrive on the grounds, you basically stay and get into music for the entire time....in the morning, after breakfast, selected acts hold workshops....from 12 midday - 12 midnight, continual concerts...then as if that wasn't enough, they all pick til daylight. as you can imagine, Trev was in heaven. the craziest thing about this is most everybody that attends can play an instrument and some of the best music comes from the camp sites after midnight!

Currently here in Austin TX, The Greencards are about to play the last show in town before moving to Nashville TN in January.   While we know this is something we all have to do this is quite sad for as Austin has really taken us in and looked after us.   We'll be heading to TN the first week in January 2005 before starting our next album with our new label, Dualtone Records. we've been writing all year, getting ready for this and very happy to have Gary Paczoza on board (engineer for Alison Krauss, Nickel Creek, Dixie Chicks)...hoping the album will be released in May 2005.

it's been crazy here this year but I wouldn't trade it for the world...some highlights include:

* playing The Ryman, Nashville TN in November, opening for the great Robert Earl Keen...
made even better having Guy Clark in the audience.

* a wonderful weekend of Texas shows with Rod McCormack joining us on guitar...there's still
no better guitar player in the world!

* John Cowan (ex New Grass Revival) joining The Greencards and Pat Flynn singing "Let's
Make A Baby King" at a Nashville show.

* receiving "Best New Band" award at the Austin Music Awards and nomination for "Best New
Emerging Artist" at The Americana Awards, 2004.

It really has been a good year...it looks like Kym and I will be continuing here in the states for a while...we've just renewed our visas again and have set our sites on booking a big year of touring to coincide with the release of the next album.
with all this also comes the realisation that we won't be home again for at least 12 months.

Well, enjoy the summer, the beach...think of us when you take that first sip of VB while watching Ponting hit a 6 at the SCG. we wish you all a Merry Xmas and a great 2005 (the aussie dollar currently indicates a good year!)....we miss you.
Carol Young and Kym Warner
p.s...can you believe it was Kym that became a vegetarian...very un-australian...haha
Photos click here for a few pics of Carol and Kym taken while they were playing
the Fred Eaglesmith-inspired Bellows Falls Festival a month or so ago .
Photo of The Greencards at this web address
Hey friends
Just back in from a 10 day tour of the US north east with Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis taking in some amazing cities and venues..... The Greencards hadn't toured outside of Texas before so this was a momentous occasion. we piled into the tour bus starting in Texas then headed to Georgia, Maryland, DC (playing a famous venue, The Birchmere), North Carolina then winding up for 2 days at Merlefest.....this folks is by far the best musical event I've attended. we played our show which was a blast...the setting is so beautiful, the sound quality superb, the crowds enthusiastic...just perfect. we were a couple of songs into our set and i glanced across side of stage to see Pat Flynn from New Grass Revival with his guitar slung over his shoulder... "don't just stand there Pat, come play with us!" it was a moment in all of our careers and it's safe to say The Greencards hit Merlefest in style.

With our set completed we set off to hear all of our heros...in no set order or preferance, here's a list of what i can remember hearing (I'm sure I'm gonna miss some): Sam Bush Band, Gillian Welch and David Rawlings, Nickel Creek, Tim O'Brien, Mark O'Connor, Patti Loveless, The Waifs, Mindy Smith, Peter Rowan, Vince Gill, John Cowan, Bryan Sutton, Bela Fleck, Mike Marshall...the list goes on...if you have plans to come to the US and love music, this is the festival for you.

Of course you guys have all heard how Jedd Hughes going over here but it's about to get bigger. with his single due out real soon and the support of his management, record company and good friends behind him, he's bound to be noticed. i encourage you all to check out his music and get behind him by buying the CD and asking radio to play Jedd's new single which is to be released by June.

She doesn't need it but we wish Kasey the best of luck for her release, Wayward Angel due out this month. while visiting Australia in January for the Tamworth Country Music Festival we ended up spending a week with Kasey and Cori in Avoca...lucky for us Kasey was recording the album during this time so we got to hear some of the tracks, including the title track which is gorgeous, and then Kym and i got to play and sing on a track...i wonder if it made the record???
goodluck Kase. xx

if you would like to catch up on what The Greencards are up to go to:

www.thegreencards.com  ...other sites you might like to check out are:
www.americanaradio.org  (The Greencards reached #5 this month)
www.kgsr.com  (great Austin radio station)
www.kut.org  (another great station)
www.mcgonigels.com  (great Houston TX venue)

or drop me a line sometime at mail@thegreencards.com  ...
stay safe
Carol Young
The Greencards
The Greencards opened The Austin Music Awards last night, officially kicking off the SXSW Festival. the big news of the night came when The Greencards took out the award for "Best New Band"..... to say we're happy is an understatement.

The festival is now in full swing....1000 bands and artists in five days....I'm not kidding, SXSW have officially hired 1000 acts and that doesn't include the hundreds of musicians that come anyway to play other bars, cafes, footpaths.

The Greencards have their official showcase tonight then tomorrow head to the Australian Showcase/BBQ with Jedd Hughes to watch Shane Nicholson and Powderfinger...I think we're more excited about hearing them than playing our own showcase.

I believe we heard one of the greatest voices of all time yesterday...we went to play a radio show for KGSR at the Four Seasons Hotel yesterday morning (at 7:30am mind you) and we're told that Ben Taylor would be following us...... Ben is the child of James Taylor and Carly Simon and sings with more beauty than I've heard before.  Sitting on the floor of the hotel, listening to him and his guitar was one of the best musical experiences I've had....thanks Ben.

Music lovers...wish you could be here to see all of this..you can go online to:
www.kgsr.com  and listen to this great radio station that does several live performances each day. "live" at The Four Seasons begins at 12:30am Australian time and then again at 6am....worth staying awake for, I promise.

will check in again when all the madness is over....
take care
Carol young
The Greencards
Kym Warner and Eamon McLoughlin
Kym and Carol
Carol Young
Rod McCormack and Carol Young
We're having a great time over here, playing some good venues. nice response from everyone and radio has been giving us some spins, can't complain really except it's getting bloody cold over here.
This has been an amazing year for Kym and I and when I look back and see all that we've gone through and accomplished I feel very satisfied. A lot of hard months of trying to establish a musical career for ourselves in a foreign country, right down to a small thing like trying to open a bank account without a social security number...just applying for the social security number to open the account took enormous amounts of patience and energy...with all that now behind us, and endless possibilities on the horizon here's a summary of my choice picks of the year....

* watching Kym play mandolin with Rodney Crowell making a DVD documentary.
* listening to Jedd Hughes in the studio recording his debut album in Nashville TN
Aug. 2003.
* making our debut CD, Movin' On... working with David Sinko, Pat Flynn, Kenny Malone, Harry Stinson and our friend, Jedd at The Sound Emporium Nashville TN Aug. 2003.
* having a few too many beers with The McCoury Brothers at a pub in Nashville TN
Aug. 2003.
* best gig of the year...The Paramount Theatre, Austin TX opening for Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis, Nov. 2003.
* most embarrassing gig of the year...playing a "pre- NYE" bluegrass show with Kym and Jedd after the crowd insisted we drink 10 shots of whiskey...each!
* best concert....Nickel Creek x 2/Patti Griffin x 2
We want to take this time to thank everyone that has kept in touch while we've been here with letters of support...for all those who have supported our music by buying the CD or requesting our songs on radio and taking an interest in The Greencards.
take care
Carol Young


"I saw The Greencards perform two songs at SXSW and knew they had something special.   Movin’ On confirms what I thought:  It’s a CD of fine songs, both originals and covers, wonderful singing and the highest level of musicianship." — Larry Sloven, president, Hightone Records

"The Greencards play and sing bluegrass music.  Their new CD, Movin’ On, is the best bluegrass I’ve heard in 20 years."
— Robert Earl Keen
The countdown is on.....just 13 days till the album is released with the first of 3 release parties on the 1st November. the three of us are excited, just can't wait to get out and do some touring and give the album a run.

Kym, Eamon, Robbie (our guitar player) and myself head off at the end of November on tour with Bruce Robison and Kelly Willis for their 'Holiday Show' taking us throughout Texas. The Greencards will open each night then do a 15 minute bluegrass set with Bruce and Kelly.....maybe you caught Bruce and Kelly's show when they came out to Australia a couple of years ago...if you did, you can understand our excitement, this will be fun.

'Darrell Scott'. he's written 'Long Time Gone' for The Chicks and 'Born To Fly' for Sarah Evans just to name a few.  Darrell played in Austin last night in a great smoke-free bar/cafe with a great PA.  His guitar playing was exceptional and one of the best singers I've heard.   The room was full of mostly musicians, even Lloyd and Natalie Maines rocked up with her little boy.  Darrell mentioned he'd love to come out to Australia to do some shows so we'll have to work on working on someone about that one....

Over and out from this end....just quickly before I sign off, Jedd Hughes will be playing with Patty Loveless on the CMA's on November 5th. we will be having a beer next Wednesday (Thursday your time), proudly watching and cheering him on.  If you're keen, you could probably get on the internet and watch him too.  I assume pay-tv will also air it in the coming weeks....best of luck Jedd xxxxxx

Alright, enough from me....our love goes out to you all....we think of you all often and look forward to seeing you in Tamworth. keep in touch with me on
Carol Young
"Mighty Fine..Mighty Fine!"
Kym Warner, Fred Eaglesmith and Carol Young
Kym and Chris Thile (Nickel Creek)
The Greencards
From Carol
It's hard to believe we've living and working in the
US for nearly 3 years now.
we spend most of our time playing shows, rehearsing or
getting material
together for rehearsal and in our spare time, we fit
in some writing...could life
get any better?

The Greencards went into the studio in late August and
cut our first album due
for release early November 2003. thanks to Rod
McCormack, we had the honour
of recording at a great studio with a great, great
team, all at "The Sound
Emporium" in Nashville Tennessee where the likes of
Gillian Welch, Alan Jackson,
Trisha Yearwood have recorded... this was the studio
where the "O brother"
album was created, the in-house guys had some
interesting tales about those
sessions that kept us in awe.   Jedd Hughes came in on
the session with Kym,
Eamon and myself and played and sang wonderfully....we
also bought in Pat
Flynn on guitar (new grass revival), Kenny Malone on
drums/percussion and
Harry Stinson sang some harmonies. we put in all
together in 5 days and mixed
for 3...there you have it, The Greencards debut album!
now for the hard
part...selling the CD! every musician says the same
thing....the recording is by
far the easy part.
while in the studio I was getting some coffee and
bumped into Keith Urban
recording in studio A (we were in studio B of course).
he was laying down some
demos, sounding great as usual....Aussies came close
to out numbering the
yanks that day!
back in Austin Texas, the weather is still in the high
30's to 40's....plenty of
outdoor shows and festivals going on, just a great
vibe around town with so
much music to go and see.  Rodney Crowell came through
town last week and
we've got an enormous festival coming up in town late
Sept. with Nickel Creek,
Patti Griffin, Dwight Yoakam, Lucinda Williams, Steve
Earle and dozens more....ya
gotta love Austin.
as much as we love Austin, we can't wait to get back
to Australia for a visit in
January...we're counting the sleeps. we're so pumped
about playing the
Tamworth Festival this year.  The Greencards will be
playing at
News from Carol and Kym in Nashville
Just two blokes and a chick....couped up in a touring
vehicle, (better known as a Tarago) taking in over
4,000 miles (not km's) in a 2 week span.
Kym and I arrived home this morning after a great run
with Hayes Carll which took us through
Arkansas, Tennessee, Nth & Sth Carolina, Virginia with a
ripper of a house concert to wind up with in a little
town called Martinsville VA, a town where bluegrass
music is a way of life.....Martinsville is in the
middle of the "Blue Ridge Mountains" and on the outer
edge of the famous "Apalachian Mountains"....this
place is just magnificent...they would pick all night
if ya let em. it seems that as a resident of
Martinsville, it's a requirement to play an instrument
of some sort. it's the real deal out that way. this is
a good part of the reason Kym and I wanted to get over
here, to hear where it all came from.
Nashville shows were scheduled in giving us the
opportunity to catch up with Jedd Hughes and Catherine
Britt....fortunately for us Michael Mccartin was
visiting too. after hearing some of Jedd's new songs
in the studio, I advise you to get your wallet out,
you won't be sorry. Jedd and MCA plan on a release
early next year, I couldn't be prouder.
August 11th "The Greencards" begin recording in
Nashville at "the sound emporium" where "O Brother
Where Art Thou" was recorded....we're lucky to have
some very experienced engineers and players coming in
to make what will be the first full album I've ever
recorded. "The Greencards" expect a release late this
year with a whirlwind tour of Australia in January,
taking in the Tamworth Festival 2004.
in the meantime, "The Greencards" have regular shows
around Austin, check it out at
Bill Chambers and Audrey Auld just did a great set
tonight @ the Cactus cafe here in Austin, a great
acoustic venue.  Kym and I are looking forward to
playing with them Saturday night. they're a hit over
that's all from this end of the world... would love to
hear what ya up to, email me @: 
thanks again Helen for the encouraging emails, we love
to hear from you.
carol young
Carol with "Chasin The Train" at the  Bridge
Hotel in Rozelle a few years back
Carol Young                                                          Kym Warner     
Hey friends
Finally after the longest winter, it's beginning to
warm up and Austin TX is just gorgeous during spring
and summer for that matter.   For us it means our work
load picks up with an increase in outdoor shows and
festivals, can't complain about that!
The first of the festival kicks off in a couple of
weeks with "the old settlers music festival".   I think
I mentioned the great line up includes Jerry Douglas
Band (can't wait for that), Del McCoury Band, Peter
Rowan & Vassar Clements, Patti Griffin and right down
the bottom of the bill "The Greencards" OOMPAH!   The
highlight of the w/end will be the arrival of our
friend Gary Brown who's flying over to the US to
attend some festivals and lucky for us, Austin's the
first stop.
Kym and I are spending more and more time writing new
songs and tunes for the band and have found a great
group of people to write, play and hang out with. 
Besides our own project, The Greencards, we've been
picking up some work with a guy named Hayes Carll, a
singer/songwriter from Houston...you can check out his
site and see what we've been up to, he's quite witty
and keeps a great road journal ( www.hayescarll.com ).
I guess our biggest news is we're planning to visit
home in January and looking like coming to Tamworth
with The Greencards.   It's been already 18 months for
me and 2 years for Kym since we've been home to see
family...far too long and besides we figure Tamworth
will be the best place to catch up with all our
friends in the one place.
Again, Kym and I miss all our friends back home and we
miss the Aussie sense of humour, there's nothing like
it anywhere else in the world.  We're very proud of the
new music coming out of Australia and always eager to
see what everyone's been doing through the Ragepage
(thanks Helen, wonderful job).   Again, my email address
is cazyoung@yahoo.com ... Let me know what you're up
love to all
Carol x
Carol Young and Jedd Hughes at a Tamworth Festival  
Jedd, Kym and Carol in Texas
Hey Helen and Friends in Australia
Big Texas Howdy from here in Austin....We've been
living in Austin Texas now for 7 months and beginning to
settle in....we miss home and our friends, but can't
complain...we're doing what we really love and living
in the music capital of the world.
Lots to tell, but firstly, had a great time with Rod
McCormack and Adam Harvey when they jetted in at the
end of October...the whole town is still talking about
them.    They made an impression on this town and we miss
them now they've gone.  I just wish Gina could've made
the journey but I hear she's got bigger things to
think about.
Well, we've finally put together a serious bluegrass
band, consisting of Kym, myself and a fiddle player
from England, Eamon Mcloughlin who's a super player
and we have a couple of different guitar players, one
of which is Jedd hughes when he's about. the band is
called funnily enough "The Greencards".
 speaking of Jedd, we're looking forward to seeing
Jedd this Xmas for a couple of weeks and if he can put
away any thoughts he had about a quiet Xmas, we'll be
putting him to work when he gets here.
We had some great news of recent times...Kym produced
an album for Ben Atkins, a songwriter from Lubbock
Texas and we've just got news he's got a recording
deal with "Hightone Records".   The album will hopefully
be released early in the new year, we'll let you know
more soon.
Besides playing heaps around town, I'm heading to Nth
and Sth Carolina for a couple of weeks on a tour with
a great songwriter named Hayes Carll...I believe we'll
be visiting Tennessee and Arkansas but I'm looking
forward to seeing Nth and Sth Carolina, they tell
me it's beautiful, even though it's in January and
we'll be freezing our arses off!
Well, I saw one of the best singers I've ever heard
perform this week....Tim O'brien of Hotrize,
Redknuckles and the Trailblazers.   He is truly a
remarkable singer. Jim Lauderdale was also in town
this week, Old and in the Gray played last week...also
got to open for Alan Jackson at the Texas State Fair a
couple of weeks ago... that was a buzz. I think the
highlight of this trip so far was the O Brother tour
and seeing my boy, Jedd up there on stage with the
greatest players ever.    Up there beside Ralph
Stanley, Alison Krauss, Patty Loveless, Emmylou, Jerry
Douglas, Stuart Duncan, the list goes on, he held his
own and did us proud.
Well, I guess you could say life is treating us well
and we're happy here in Austin but have serious hopes
of getting back to Australia for a visit in the first
half of next year (fingers crossed). I keep up to date
with what's happening over there through the Ragepage. I
believe Beccy's album will be out in the new year and
Adam Harvey will start work on a new one soon, we wish
them every success along with everyone else back there
involved in the country music scene. in case you were
wondering, yes Kasey is the Queen of Austin, not a
person in town doesn't know of Kasey and her dad Bill,
they just love em here.
 We miss everyone so much, best wishes for a safe and
happy Xmas.

lots and lots of love
carol young x