If I’ve learned anything on this trip it’s that it’s a small world. And that people are amazing. And there are really good people out there.  That’s three things – I know!    There were many moments of synchronicity on my trip and it made me sure that I was in the right place.  

I flew from LA to Nashville,  arriving to a hotter than usual October evening to rent a car and head for my host’s house. I met Sharon and Chris Burgess in Dublin at the Ruby Sessions – the night Theo Katzman blew us all away (alongside the amazing Mick Pyro, stunnjng Eve Belle and dance-tastic  Le Galaxie ). I mentioned a possible trip to Nashville and their immediate response was that I could stay with them. Numbers swapped and deal done.  When I got in touch a couple of months ago they confirmed I could stay and took away the worry and stress of having to find somewhere to stay.  I arrived to an amazing welcome, tour of the house and dinner cooked by chef Chris on the table. Additional furry welcomes from Panda (the cat who likes company while eating and will ‘ask’ you to join her and purr contentedly when you do) and Ella, short for Nutella (the dog, who gets ridiculously excited at the prospect of a glass of water with ice cubes in it). Cuteness central. I had just arrived as the sun was setting over Old Hickory Lake and Sharon told me we could go kayaking and put on the pontoon. #happinessis

I headed for Thomm’s studio at 10am on Tuesday. By pure chance it was the same side of Nashville and only a 25 minute drive.  After a quick chat and over coffee, we went through the songs, me playing them and him writing up charts for everyone the next day.  It didn’t take long, and if we’d recorded just that, me and him, I’d have been happy. I knew it was going to work out! I left after a couple of hours to visit the Country Music Hall of Fame, staying only 3hours, when I could have stayed me – well I actually couldn’t as they were closing, but how and ever !

We did all the recording over two days, Wednesday and Friday, hanging with Lynn Williams on drums and Mark Fain on double bass.  Andy was on hand to control the desk -and it all went so easily and quickly.  

On the Thursday Tomm was teaching so I headed off to a writing session with Jason Herndon, who it turns out is guitar tech for Blake Shelton. As you do, like! 

By the time Saturday came around we were mixing, and finished at 3 to head to a gig where Thomm was playing with his friends Peter and Eric.  Sunday morning saw me back to listen through before I headed off after an hour and a half with the tracks on my hard drive.  Record done! 

Headed to meet Jason in a Starbucks to finish writing our song, before heading back to my hosts, for an afternoon on the pontoon, a long kayak and an evening of dinner, music and darts.  

Nashville was amazing and I couldn’t have asked for more – I’ll definitely be back and I can’t wait to release this record! 

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Gráinne Hunt is a contemporary folk singer and songwriter, raised in Monaghan and based in Kildare, Ireland. With consistently on-point, captivating vocals and well-honed, insightful songs, Grainne has shared stages with Glen Hansard and U2, has opened for Gladys Knight, Eagle Eye Cherry and the Bay City Rollers, and has been compared to vocal icons Tracy Chapman and Nathalie Merchant.

Her ‘gorgeous new album’ (Mathieu Norry RTE Radio 1), This Secret, was released in September 2019. ‘[A] seamlessly gentle fusion of Irish folk and Nashville backing, together with Gráinne’s gorgeous, slightly throaty vocal delivery’ (FolkRadio.co.uk), it was recorded with Thomm Jutz (Nanci Griffith, Maura O’Connell) and features the skills of Mark Fain (Ry Cooder) on bass and Lynn Williams (John Hiatt) on drums.  

2019 also saw the release of an Irish folk album, Songs from Ireland, recorded with award winning guitarist Brendan Walsh. Recorded last year in Soundville Studios Luzern, it includes songs Buachaill on Eirne and Raglan Road. 

Despite 2020 cancellations, over the various lockdown periods Gráinne performed for the #IrelandPerforms initiative, joined Axis Ballymun for Cruinniú na nÓg & #SummerSessions, founded songwritercircle.club, created the first #AdventCalendarofSong (solo recordings of 24 Christmas songs released on social media every day in December) which included a collaboration with German choir Cantus Domus on a beautiful version of The Wexford Carol, and joined U2, Glen Hansard, and others for The Late Late Show Charity Busk.  


Songs From Ireland

Firing Pin

This Secret

Breathe Arvo party Remix