Maybe you remember her as the lead singer of folk-rock/adult alternative group, October Project in the mid-1990s. Or, perhaps you recognize her as the artist behind the theme song to Anne Rice’s new audiobook, The Wolves of Midwinter. Or maybe you just know her for her incredibly expressive and powerful voice.
However you know Mary Fahl – and even if you don’t – she is coming to Minneapolis to play at The Dakota on Saturday, July 19, and you should consider going.
She will be here in support of her long-awaited self-released album, Love and Gravity, which was released earlier this year.
This 10-song collection is filled with majestic, folk-etched ballads, most of which were composed and co-written by Fahl, including Exiles (The Wolves of Midwinter), the theme song for the audiobook version of The Wolves of Midwinter by iconic author Anne Rice.
The album also features a powerful tribute to true love, called Gravity (Move Mountains, Turn Rivers Around), which was written for her husband, renowned deep-sea oceanographer and marine ecologist Richard Lutz, and the unflaggingly romantic Like Johnny Loved June, honoring Johnny Cash and June Carter.
We were fortunate enough to have a phone conversation with Fahl one Thursday summer afternoon when she was at her home in eastern Pennsylvania. She told us it had been about 18 years since she’s been to Minneapolis, but that she works with a lot of people from here, who are all really, really great!
In fact, she worked with some folks from Minneapolis on a live album and DVD from a September 7, 2013, performance at the Mauch Chunk Opera House in Jim Thorpe, PA, which was taped for an upcoming PBS special. The concert included songs from Love and Gravity, as well as favorites from her October Project days and selections from her celebrated interpretation of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon.
And yes, you read that right. Fahl did a cover of Dark Side of the Moon, and we had to ask her about that.
“That album spoke so coherently to me as to what modern life is like. I feel that with the amount of information that is constantly available to us, we’ve lost our center as humans,” Fahl says. Dark Side of the Moon spiritually spoke to me, so I had to do my own interpretation of it.”
And what about working with Anne Rice?
“That was a trip!” she says. “Anne Rice emailed me about two years ago and told me she listened to a song from October Project, so when I completed this album, I asked Anne if she wanted a copy. That turned into a request from her to write a song for her new audiobook.”
Although Fahl was immensely flattered, she had a very tight deadline to complete the song.
It turned out it was an easy task. She wrote and recorded Exiles (The Wolves of Midwinter), which is the theme song for the audiobook, in one week.
“It’s such a vivid, cinematic book that the song was very easy to write,” says Fahl.
Fahl is looking forward to coming back to Minneapolis, which is the last stop on her tour to support her new CD. And while she told us she’s planning to take August off, she also told us she felt the most like herself when she’s on the road.
In fact, she’ll be working on getting another album together in the fall, and then will probably hit the road again.
“I don’t feel like I’m myself if I don’t have a bunch of gigs lined up,” she says. “Not only is it fun to get away and see friends I’ve made all around the country, I feel most authentically like myself when I’m on stage. It’s one of the places where I’m most comfortable,” she adds.
So you know it’s going to be a great show! And might we hear some of her interpretation of Dark Side of the Moon, along with the tracks to her new CD? Time will tell!
Mary Fahl will be at The Dakota on Saturday, July 19 at 8:00 pm. Tickets are $28 and you can order yours by clicking here.