October 2011
song heaven

When a bunch of women, I mean really really accomplished and talented women get together from all corners of the world, great things could happen. 

They did. And they did. I don't even have words for how profound  these past few days were. No egos, no drama. Just a little too much fun, and a bunch of killer songs.

 (ok, debi nova and I wrote one really silly one, - but if we take out the dirty parts we could pitch it to sesame street.)


Natalia Lafourcade

Carolyne Dawn Johnson

Lena Perez

Deana Carter

Debi Nova

Erika Nuri


everybody brought their game. I can't and will not stop gushing. and I never wanted it to end.

Claudia Brant   -  put the whole thing together. ASCAP, SONY, and D'Anbino wines were sponsors, so we didn't go hungry, and we certainly didn't go without a nice Cabernet every evening!! (the chocolate truffles didn't hurt either!)



Jeeve was our uber gifted engineer, and on the spot producer. WOW


Karl from ASCAP, Mike from D'Anbino wines!


Malibu, late afternoon shimmer



the path to the paradise


It was heaven. We were sequestered and coddled in a gorgeous house (IN MALIBU!) with a recording studio. We just wrote and recorded and wrote and recorded some more. I am in heavy song camp withdrawal.



front to back: Natalia, Lena, jb, Claudia, CDJ, Erika, Debi. (Deana had to bolt to pick up her son at school!)


Thank you thank you thank you: Alexandra, Gabriela, Daniel, Karl, Brendan, Mike, SAL, the Gibbs, the ladies who tidied up every day. I am ever grateful.


This morning my mother asked me if I was going away this week.
I haven't mentioned my trip. No one has mentioned my trip... I've been afraid to breathe a word in case it might jinx the possibility of me really truly going to write songs, secluded  in LA for a few days.


But mom knew. In that way that we've had, for better or for worse for all these years, she knew.

that's me behind the pillow. Just this Thursday she was up "editing."


 "I AM going for a couple of days, you're right. I told her. (I cannot lie, even now) but I wanted to make sure you were totally taken care of before I made my final plans."

Mom, without a beat: "well you have to do these things, it's very important."

There she was, again, with the very permission I needed. I have been afraid to go far, things are changing quickly here. But there she was, fierce momma instinct coming from somewhere deep in the tangles to urge baby out of the nest.


She slept the rest of the day. Not a peep. Every time she stirred I tried to spoon in something, cajole her a little. But she just wanted to sleep. Not even "Nobody's Fool" could keep her awake today.

Aye, there's the rub.

isn't it rich


(Mom's L. L. Bean slippers! I had to take this picture even though it's a little too Wizard of Oz...but Mom would have laughed herself!)

This week mom is writing out her last will and testament again and again and again. Often she barely whispers, and gets very cross when we're not paying attention. She is not getting up to walk any more, I believe she is physically capable, but something in her brain is just misfiring, and it's too scary to try. Her perceptions of depth and sound and light are changing. Her eyes are sometimes cloudy and still. Her vocabulary? Still unbelievable. Last night she dictated this, verbatim:


"To my wonderful family and friends who always were ready to laugh and cry.

I've had the most beautiful life anybody could hope for and I thank you all.

(And the chance to write poetry for I don't know how many years. Maybe 55.


I have had, at the least, 85 years of good fun, good friends, and fine neighbors." (She will be 80 in November.)


I scribble it all down. Then she tells me I should keep the picture of that "very earnest lady" (the oil paint portrait of her when she was 14.) "No, I'm just being facetious," she giggles.


"Maybe tomorrow I'll be grey enough to figure out who my friends and family really are."

Then, as I am tucking her in, slowly pulling away to go to sleep for the night, she says: "You are getting more and more beautiful."


How does she do it?