Ordinary Time

It somehow makes sense that The Mosleys marked the year of their new record with a family move, from the only home their children have known, to a different place in a different state. Ordinary Time is an eleven-song journey through the crucibles of ache and joy brought on by family trials and the road. Produced with Phil Madeira and Jimmy Abegg, legendary songwriters and good friends of Stephen and Rachel Mosley, the record came out of a successful crowdfunding campaign (thank you to those of you who gave!) and a continual journey of writing, playing, and parsing out what it would look like to be singer-songwriters.

Not to say that the journey hasn’t been marked by moments of excitement. There was winning both the famed Eddie’s Attic songwriter shootout and the competition at Zac Brown’s Southern Ground. They were the artist of the month on NPR’s Folk Alley. And of course, there was the opening slot for Air Supply at Chastain Park. Yet the new record didn’t necessarily emerge from these places.

For all intents and purposes, Ordinary Time was born in an Airstream trailer, rocketing somewhere through the American West like a satellite still longing for the home ground of the South.

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A Run With AP and Friends

My daughter Laurel told me how wearing exercise clothes can make you want to exercise, so I bought the uniform of the runner—leggings—and it sort of works. Once I put them on, I feel like I’ve made a commitment to run.

This morning I really didn’t want to run—and when I say “run”, I mean “walk-run,” with more walking than running at this point in my 5K run app.

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Fund The Mosleys’ New Record!

Once in a while, you run across people doing good work, and you ask yourself: Why isn’t everybody excited about this? Much of that good work requires a little digging to unearth, so we wanted to do the labor for you and make sure you got a chance to participate in something wonderful.

Stephen and Rachel Mosley have been crafting tunes as a folk duo for about three years, starting at their house in Serenbe, Georgia, and ending up in a Floridian plantation mansion that’s spitting distance from the Gulf of Mexico. Some of you might recall Rachel’s splendid, honest writing about the good perils of family. This year saw the Mosleys not only deciding to produce new music, but to produce a full-length record with Phil Madeira and Jimmy Abegg.

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Looking You in the Eye

We’re still excited at the success of Echo Hill, our latest venture, and we thought we’d take the time to look into what we’re doing here at Foundling House in the first place, and why we would put together a dinner and concert in which people look each other in the eye, taste delectable food, and drink in well-crafted, truth-bearing art. Also, here’s a great chance for those of you who missed our evening to get a glimpse of what transpired:

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A Big Day of Small Things

Last Friday night, we held our first Foundling House brick-and-mortar event—a dinner and concert called Echo Hill, featuring the talents of Eric Peters, Janna Barber, Palmer Gregg, Ben Bannister, Bill Wolf, and Lorraine Furtner, plus an excellent feast by Sullivan’s.

This project had been more than six months in the making. The idea always seemed to be floating around in the back of my mind that we shouldn’t limit ourselves to virtual reception of art, to interaction by proxy. That kind of distance relationship, at least where art is concerned, suffers from a fan-based mentality. Good poems, stories, and songs drift into the territory of hagiography—that glowing writing full of miracles and merit that surrounds the saints of old. If we add the personal context of presence, our work takes on different and perhaps more holistic meaning*. I had mentioned the possibility of an event to our writers’ group multiple times, trying to gauge interest and, on a more subliminal level, hoping that if I talked about it enough, I would figure out how to pull it off.

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The Ministry of Reminder

“All I ever get for Christmas is blue.”

—Over the Rhine

This past year, my dear wife and a number of my friends spent extended time away from social media due to the surplus of vitriol surrounding the election. It simply grew to be too much for some folks. Alas, for business reasons, I could not leave Facebook. I wanted to. I found myself desiring social media abstinence even more leading up to Christmas.

I confess, I abhor the onslaught of all those picture-perfect, iPhone-filtered snapshots of families doing Christmas-y things: sitting down to a feast, having a party, opening gifts, ice skating, decorating trees, decorating houses, decorating pets. You might call me a Scrooge, but I promise, it’s not that. My daughter asked me what I wanted for Christmas this year. Amongst a couple ideas of things I could actually use (a new keyboard rig would be nice, but it’s not going to happen yet), I realized what I really wanted was to be able to spend the time focusing on Christ and his coming. I wanted Advent at the forefront of our thoughts. If we as a family arrived at Christmas Day and found ourselves regretting ill-spent time pondering things other than the miraculous, time-shattering coming of Jesus, then I would be faced only with the relative vapidity of everything without Christ. Gifts, decorations, food—all things pale in light of the mystery of what C. S. Lewis called the One True Myth, the great mystery of Jesus’ coming.

Now, before you flush this little confession from your mind like so much kitsch, hear me out.

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