Category Archives: austin

Red Wolf Song Healing Circles & Art Classes

Hello friends-

I am writing to you from my studio/study/garage space when all is quiet here in South Austin. Fall seems to have officially arrived and the air feels fresh & cool. This is my favorite time of year…


Me & Miranda after a song healing circle

I have been quite busy with various projects these days (besides motherhood!) and would love to share with you some of what has been going on. Recently, one of my friends & fellow songwriter Miranda Dawn invited me to be a part of this great workshop that she created. I facilitated a song healing circle with her, and we connected with people who were grieving the loss of loved ones, which was the theme of this particular event. As part of the workshop, the participants were led to freeform write and together we wrote a song for each person using their words. The amount of love and support that was present was just incredible. I left the circle feeling uplifted and renewed. It was such an honor to be a part of this.

Miranda and I will be giving another workshop this Sunday in South Austin. If you happen to be in town, I encourage you to come to the event. The theme is Family Connection and Communication, but is really open for anything. There will be a new moon in the sky, and our focus will be on renewal, hope and new beginnings. Visit for more info.


Singing “Circle Game” with Shawnee

This past weekend I was a part of a great lineup for a Joni Mitchell Tribute Show. I sang the song “Circle Game” with Shawnee Kilgore. The event was a fundraiser for Kerry Polk, who is a fellow songwriter dealing with some health issues. It was such a beautiful show with so many amazing voices singing Joni’s songs.

As some of you know, I am also a painter. I have been teaching painting classes and have some really fun events coming up soon. I give lessons at schools, homes, breweries & more! If you would like to attend one of these classes, or want to host one of your own, please email me back to chat.

Sending you all lots of love,


European Press reviews for Return to Waves

Here are some links to see whReturn to Wavesat folks are saying about the new record:

Rootstime Belgium:

Insurgent Country:

Johnny’s Garden:

Keys & Chords:

Real Roots Cafe:

Vanessa Lively, Return to Waves


Happy Thanksgiving + Funny Homemade Kids Video

…this is a picture of the friendliest rooster I have ever met! (near Fischer, TX – Home of the Rice Fest in Fischer Hall)

Happy Thanksgiving friends!!

I can’t believe that it is already time for Thanksgiving feasting! I am really excited. Jason always makes wonderful pies and this year he will be making a special gluten free Pumpkin Pie too. I know that I am grateful for a lot this year, but especially grateful to all of you who support my music & art! Thank you! You are my patrons.

This week, I will be interviewing with WGDR’s Women Stirred Radio in Vermont. You can listen to the interview live at this Thursday 11/17 at 4:15pm ET. We’ll be talking about the new album and lots more!

Vanessa’s kids song + video

Earlier this year, I did a some songwriting workshops with elementary school kids here in Austin. The song that I wrote for the workshop to use as an example was called “Chocolate Milk, Pickles & Cheese”. The other day I got a wild hair and wanted to record a silly video to go along with it. Check it out & show your kiddos! I hear that babies love it!

I hope that all of you have a wonderful Thanksgiving next week. Sending you lots of love!


Free Download & New Videos!

Jason & I are back in Texas now. The CD Release Tour for Uncovering Stones was so wonderful. Now I am hangin’ in Austin where we are having record breaking heat…so I thought it would be nice to give you a cool free download of “Digging Up Dirt” (something I can’t wait to do!) Enjoy the tune…hopefully it can be a chill soundtrack to the end of your summer!

Reviews & Recent Videos…
The new album is continuing to receive great reviews! Some exciting things are on the horizon and I will be sure to pass them along as soon as I can:) Here are a couple of videos from the CD Release shows in Austin & Dallas:

Playing Games – The Cactus Cafe 06/21/11

Honeybee – The Kessler Theatre 06/22/11

We will be uploading some more videos from The Cactus Cafe (with the band) so stay tuned!

Art & Creations…
Right now I am focusing on creating art in all areas: painting, jewelry, co-writing songs with Jason and folks from Denmark (with the House of Songs), and anything else creative I can get my hands on! A good friend of mine is about to have a baby, so last week we painted a Gecko on her big belly with henna for good wishes and blessings! I loved it so much, I was thinking that I should offer this for all mommies to be…. 🙂

I hope you have a wonderful day!!

Lots of love,


More images from the recording sessions are online at

A Glimmer of Hope is an Austin-based nonprofit that does humanitarian work in Africa. The organization is raising money to bring food, clean water and other necessities to the drought-stricken area. At Glimmer, 100 percent of the overhead costs are covered by the nonprofit’s endowment, so all donations go directly to projects. To give, go here.

Tour update, Austin 360 Radio & more…

Hey friends,

I am writing you from deep in the hills of West Virginia. Jason and I have been on tour since the CD Release a couple weeks ago and it has been amazing so far!! We have had great shows in TX, AR, MN, IL & OH, and now we’re heading to Nashville, Memphis & Little Rock for the last few shows of this trip. I am not looking forward to the crazy heat in Austin, but it is always nice to get home!

…Videos, Radio Performances & such…
There are many videos online from our CD Release at The Kessler Theatre in Dallas. Also, the KFAI live in-studio performance is archived so you can hear that online for another week or so. Click here to listen that show. When we get back to Texas, I’ll be uploading some videos from the Cactus Cafe show in Austin as well, and will post them to the website, so be on the the lookout for that…

And next week (Thursday July 14th / Bastille Day!) Jason and I will do a live in-studio performance for Austin’s new radio station Austin 360 Radio. You can listen online at

Thank you for all your love and support!! Everything has been going really well with this new album and we will be setting up many more tours, so hopefully we’ll see you someday soon in the near future…

Lots of love,


p.s. the album is available for sale online via our website, iTunes & more!

The story of ‘Uncovering Stones’

My new album ‘Uncovering Stones’ will be out in June.

This process has been about friends, family and community from start to finish. I began the project last November by painting the album cover artwork in the backyard of my friends’ house in East Austin. (You can see the video here: I then sold the 42 paintings to help fund the album.

The next part of the process was deciding which songs would go on the album. Jason and I made score sheets that we passed around to our friends, who in turn helped us decide what to put on. Next we thought about each song, and how to bring it to life on the album. We made a list of all the musicians we wanted to record with. I then met with a few folks to get additional direction and advice on how to best move forward with all our ideas. We practiced with the artists & prepared for recording. Around this time, we also got some beautiful photos taken by the very talented Rodney Bursiel, who we met through our friend Carrie Elkin. He had just taken her photos for her newest release ‘Call It My Garden’ (a wonderful record from this year!)…the photos he took were stunning. Jason & I were working with Carrie on her CD Design & Website, and were using all of Rodney’s images, which made the whole process so much easier. So then we met with him to take our photos for this next record, and I am so happy that we did. We had our photo shoot at Sam Baker’s house surrounded by nature and paintings by Sam. I’ll share more of these images soon on the new website & CD artwork.

The next person who entered the scene was Keith Gary. Keith had just worked with our friend Danny out at Blue Rock Studios in Wimberley on his new record ‘Man of Many Moons’ (which by the way is another awesome record from 2011) Danny highly recommended Keith, and the timing was perfect. We wanted to record in our house again, but this time working with a professional engineer. We recorded for four solid days together, then had another couple of half days during the week of SXSW to add additional textures of voices of friends that were in town. During this time, we had another fundraising campaign through Kickstarter to help offset the cost of replication, mastering and engineering. So through pre-orders, we were able to get a bit more financial help.

‘Uncovering Stones’ features the voices of Raina Rose, Michelle Z. Huff, Danny Schmidt & Carrie Elkin, along with many talented local musicians: Rob Hooper, Sick, Trevor Smith, Andre Moran, Jason Lively, Mark Wochner. It was produced by Jason Lively & Keith Gary. Recorded & mixed by Keith Gary. Mastered at Terra Nova Studios by Nick Landis…Pure Austin! Pure Community!

There are twelve original songs on this album, two of which are in Spanish. It floats in and out of many genres, from Reggae to Americana/Bluegrass, then to Gypsy/World, then Folk with hints of Rock & Funk! It is definitely eclectic. Some songs are pure fun, others are haunting…but all of it is about the human spirit and human connection.

I want to thank all of the people who were involved in helping this all come together. We have made a record together!!! I can’t wait to share it with everyone.

Also, I want to say a special thank you to all my band members over these past few years in Austin. You all have been so awesome and special to me…thanks for all your time & energy! Adam, Ervey, Jeanette, Sick, Etan, Mark, and the many who have sat in here & there. You have really given a lot to me. Also, all the folk music community & Austin music community that has shown me so much support!