IF YOU GO
■ What: Gillian Welch (and Dave Rawlings) in
■ When: 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 30.
■ Where: Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St.
■ Admission: $27.50 and $32.50 plus fees.
■ Phone: 423-642-8497.
■ Website: www.Chattanooga OnStage.com.
GILLIAN WELCH DISCOGRAPHY
■ 1996: “Revival”
■ 1998: “Hell Among the Yearlings”
■ 2001: “Time (The Revelator)”
■ 2003: “Soul Journey”
■ 2011: “The Harrow & The Harvest”
An eight-city tour she describes as a "spur-of-the-moment Southeast U.S. jaunt" will bring Americana darling Gillian Welch to Chattanooga on Wednesday, April 30. The Tivoli Theatre is the final stop on the nine-day outing, which had sold-out dates in North Carolina and Virginia at press time.
Welch will be joined by her longtime musical partner, Dave Rawlings, who goes unbilled in her headlining half of the duo. The positions are reversed when she joins him in the Dave Rawlings Machine, a who's who of musicians that will tour again this summer. The three-time Grammy nominees will perform songs from their entire catalog over the course of two acoustic sets Wednesday.
Here are five things to know about the musicians in general, Welch in particular.
1 The two are known for a sparse, dark style. Welch says Rawlings described their last project, 2011's "The Harrow & The Harvest," as "10 different kinds of sad." But she insists, "it's not without humor."
2 She and Rawlings supply vocals on a song from the new debut solo album by Benmont Tench, keyboardist for Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers. "Blonde Girl, Blue Dress," the first single from "You Should Be So Lucky," also features Petty on bass and Ringo Starr on tambourine.
3 Welch wrote the liner notes for the re-release earlier this month of Emmylou Harris' classic 1995 album, "Wrecking Ball," which included the song "Orphan Girl" by Welch, a then-unknown in Nashville. "It was nothing less than astounding to hear my parsed couplets given such life," she writes of the first time she heard the album. "I was propelled from the sequestered privacy of my bedroom into the wide world of song. It was the greatest and kindest shove anyone could have given me."
4 Welch finished college in 1992 and moved to Nashville. In an interview with The New Yorker, she recalled, "I looked at my record collection and saw that all the music I loved had been made in Nashville -- Bill Monroe, (Bob) Dylan, The Stanley Brothers, Neil Young -- so I moved there. Not ever thinking I was 30 years too late."
5 "O Brother, Where Art Thou" gave Welch a career boost. Besides a cameo as a Soggy Bottom customer in the 2000 film, she sang two songs and served as associate producer on the soundtrack. Her extensive list of credits for television and film also includes "Nashville," "Criminal Minds," "Justified," "True Blood," "Bolt," "Almost Heaven" and "Hope Floats."