& WFDU-FM’s TRADITIONS Playlist for May 29, 2016
It has been over a year since the trio Red Molly announced they were going on an “indefinite hiatus” following their summer tour. Their final concerts last August were bittersweet affairs with a lot of friends joining them onstage and eager fans looking to hear them one more time before their “break.” The tour brought them back to some of the venues where they built up their legion of loyal fans. There were lots of reminisces about their past performances, road trips and the great music they made. During their 11 years together, the acclaimed trio brought their live shows to stages all around the globe and recorded some magnificent CDs that have become staples on both Folk and Americana radio shows.
Mixed in with the sad reality that they were putting their live shows on hold was the anticipation of what the future will bring from these talented individuals. Original member Carolann Solebello, who left the group in 2010, has since released a couple of terrific solo CDs that show her diverse range. Carolann also is now part of No Fuss and Feathers, a collaboration with the YaYas (Catherine Miles and Jay Marfale) and singer-songwriter Karyn Oliver. I am eagerly anticipating the future projects that Red Molly’s Laurie MacAllister, Molly Venter and Abbie Gardner could embark on.
Abbie Gardner came on my show this past Sunday to talk about some of the exciting endeavors she is working on. She recently recorded a few songs with singer-songwriter Jesse Terry and the two are embarking on a short tour. Jesse is a singer-songwriter who has been gaining a lot of attention in recent years with his lyrically driven alt-country style. He has performed at Bonaroo as well as the Philadelphia Folk Festival. Together, Abbie and Jesse beautifully mesh their styles with gorgeous harmony and stunning vocals. Their varied musical styles make for an exciting sound, and it is fitting that they are calling this tour and EP “Joyful Noise.”
Of course, it is NOT noise at all, but it certainly is a joyful sound! They will kick off their tour on Saturday June 4 right here in Teaneck, New Jersey at the Ethical Brew Coffeehouse and then proceed to stops at Joe’s Pub in NYC, Club Passim in Boston, Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs and then additional stops in Connecticut before heading south for shows in Nashville and Bristol, Tennesee.
I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Abbie since her pre-Red Molly days. (In the interview below, I recall the first time I “discovered” Red Molly!). Abbie has always been an extraordinary artist who combines a host of musical influences. Her father is Herb Gardner, a renowned swing jazz and stride pianist and also a Dixieland trombonist. Herb was also a fixture at legendary jazz clubs such as Jimmy Ryan’s and Eddie Condon’s in NYC, and he also served as co-leader of Vince Giordano’s Nighthawks. He also worked with Al “Jazzbeaux” Collins and created the song “Jazzbeaux’s Time of Night”, the theme song for iconic radio show that Collins used to host on WNEW-AM. Abbie’s mother loved bluegrass, and young Abbie would find herself attending bluegrass festivals at the tender age of three. Growing up, Abbie studied classical flute to really round out her musical influences.
As an adult, Abbie’s gift for songwriting really blossomed. She also discovered the dobro in 2004 and began developing her skills on the instrument. The dobro became a signature sound of Red Molly and as a solo artist she continues to innovate and captivate with her strong vocals and compelling songs.
Since the Red Molly hiatus, Abbie has been busy. In addition to working with Jesse Terry, she also toured with Brooks Williams. She also dipped her toes back into the jazz world by working with her dad at some swing dances. She is in the planning stages for her next solo recording, writing new songs, and I look forward to listening to this and all the great projects she chooses to tackle. Likewise, I am sure we will be hearing more great things from her Red Molly bandmates, and who knows exactly how long a “hiatus” will officially last?
Click on the link below to hear Abbie Gardner with Ron Olesko on WFDU-FM’s TRADITIONS
Originally broadcast on May 29, 2016