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Pretty Fair Miss
Pretty Fair Miss Cover
Thanks to all of the spirited folks who have kept up with our Great Fabric Exchange and joined in! We've had many nice letters in the mail and have been thrilled to see folks at our concerts with fabric in their laps or tucked under their seats. This Trip Around the World Quilt certainly is going to be beautiful! We are trading fabric for the Pretty Fair Miss CD until our last concert of the year on November 10, so there's still plenty of time to get involved, tell your friends, and get into that old-timey bartering frame of mind! To see all of the new fabric from the Exchange and for photos from the Quilt in a Day project I did with my Mawmaw and Mom poke your head into The Little Yellow Sewing Box.
Avery Smith Jewell Ridge 1931
Jeni's Great Grandfather
Avery Smith 1931
It was with great sadness that Billy and I watched the unfolding of the devastating events at the Upper Big Branch Mine in West Virginia. Thanks to all of you who wrote that we were in your thoughts. As you may have read in the news, Upper Big Branch was not a Union mine.
Over the last year, we have been blessed to meet many members of the United Mine Workers of America and to hear the fiery speeches of their President, Cecil Roberts. These workers are ever grateful for the fact that they had the good fortune to work in Union mines where they had the right to speak out when they felt their lives were at risk. Shouldn't we all be so blessed, so lucky, so valued?
On Longing For Heaven, you will find the prayer-song that we wrote for President Cecil Roberts, whom we wanted to honor for his tireless fight for the safety of all workers. We will be sharing that song at the UMWA Convention this July.
If you are aware of any way in which we can continue to be of help in raising awareness about the UMWA or AFL-CIO, please be in touch.
"God bless Jewell Ridge and the UMWA, and God bless the miner who has seen his day."
  - Local 6167, J & B
04/22/10, Chesterfield, VA  Chesterfield County Library
04/23/10, Staunton, VA  Frederick House Hotel
04/30 - 5/2/10, Wilkesboro, NC  MERLFEST
06/06 - 7/4/10, England & Wales A Jolly Good Time
Longing for Heaven
Longing for Heaven Cover
Longing No More!

We are so very happy to announce that our new CD, Longing for Heaven is now available at the trusty and independent musician friendly CD BABY! Yippee! Break out the tofu and broccoli! Pass round the carrot juice!

We'd be delighted if you'd head over there and overwhelm them with orders . . . And, while you're at, it you can also pick up a copy of Sweet & Toxic, The Extra Sweet Edition. This is the re-release of our first EP, with three new bonus tracks including the never before released song "Coronation Day." The new version of this EP has a booklet with all the lyrics and alternate takes of "Sweet & Toxic" and "If the Gun's Not Loaded." Sweet indeed!

And to top it off, we are blushing terribly from our very first review by Hazel Davis, who is the brains behind the Folkingcool blog in the UK. She writes:

Their latest album - Longing For Heaven - plopping on my doormat this morning has given me more joy than I can express and if I seem hyperbolic it's because That's What They Do To You.

Featuring a number of traditional songs from the Appalachians, some hymns and a couple of original numbers, the record was made "in the mountains of Western North Carolina in the dead of winter." It's exactly what this fan needed after I'd bored my household rigid with their debut Sweet And Toxic.

The original tracks, such as the deliriously catchy If I Ever Get Ten Dollars and While I Stay At Home And Weep (replete with my new favourite word "prayhaps") blend effortlessly with the traditional numbers (their arrangement of the hymn Longing For Heaven is just gorgeous), feeling like old favourites within about one listen.

This pair does what nostalgia fetishists try and fail at doing and they manage effortlessly simply because they are the real deal.

I have owned this album for less than a day and already I am willing to throw most of my others out (apart from the Springsteen, obviously).

To read the whole review, just follow this link down the rabbit hole!
We felt it a good omen that Billy's shirt matched the B&B tablecloth our first morning in York last year!
Billy's Shirt Matches Tablecloth
Jeni & Billy UK Tour in June
Just a quick note to our UK fans to say how very much we are looking forward to our return to your wonderful and magical country. Everywhere we visited and shared our music last year, we were welcomed with smiling faces, a hot cup of herbal tea, and homemade vegan goodies! We were, indeed, in our own fairytale. We still have a few dates open here and there in our tour and would love your suggestions for venues -- and would also be glad to hear from anyone who would be keen on hosting a house concert. So, please do get in touch and we'll see what we can do!
Jeni & Billy in Hollywood on the Walk of Stars, November 2009
Jeni & Billy in Hollywood
California Dreamin'
We will be spending much of September and October of this year on the West Coast. With dates from Las Cruces, NM, to Blodgett, OR, we have a lot of ground to cover with our little Airstream Travel Trailer. We still have plenty of dates open, especially during the week, for house concerts, coffeehouses, libraries, colleges and community centers. If you know of a venue near you where our music would be at home, or if you are interested in hosting us for a happy and fun house concert, we would love to hear from you. You can also write to our trusty and tall agent, Josh Dunson, at Real People's Music.
Mom (Marcy), Me (Jeni), and MawMaw (Ann) tying our quilt.
Quilting Bee at the Friendly Chapel Church

Jelly Maker's Cabin Quilt
Just after Easter, Billy and I spent a few days with my Mawmaw up on Smith Ridge, Virginia. My Mom was able to visit as well, and we thought that we might as well make a quilt, three generations all together. I bought the pattern and material from the incredibly nice folks at Quilting Essentials in Salem, VA, for a Jelly Maker's Cabin Quilt, a contemporary pattern by Kimberly Camou. Mawmaw made the biscuits and Mom set up an assembly line and off we went. It so happened as we made the quilt that the sky darkened and there came a hailstorm like Mawmaw had never seen in all her years. It was as round as a nickel and plump like a blueberry. Mawmaw and I both went out with Ziploc bags and collected hail and now it's in our freezers!
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