Songwriter Tift Merritt is a North Carolina native who wanted to be a writer until her father taught her guitar chords and Percy Sledge songs. Over the course of four studio albums, she has built a unique, uncompromising and critically acclaimed road of audio short stories. Emmylou Harris calls her a diamond in a coal mine. She has toured with Iron and Wine, Nick Lowe, Andrew Bird & Gregg Allman, appeared on "Austin City Limits" & "Late Night with David Letterman," been Grammy nominated for Country Album of the Year, and nominated for four Americana Music Awards. Currently at work on her fifth studio record, Traveling Alone, Tift also produces a handmade radio show, The Spark, which is a monthly conversation about process, integrity, and making things for Marfa, Texas Public Radio.
Tift lives in New York City with her husband who is also a musician. If you can't find her, she has probably rented an apartment with a piano in a town where she doesn't know anyone and will be back before too long.
Sculptor turned Milliner, Leigh Magar started Magar Hatworks almost 20 years ago in Charleston, SC.
She studied the classic hat making techniques at F.I.T. in Manhattan.
She has created hats for Jussara Lee’s (1998) Bryant Park runway show, had work displayed in numerous Barneys New York ads & windows, chosen for “Women’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award” from Country Living magazine (2009), won “Made in the South Award” from Garden & Gun magazine (2010), collaborated with J. Morgan Puett in “Cottage Industry” Spoleto Art’s Festival (2002), and created whimsical bird and butterfly hats for the Rachel Feinstein/John Currin’s wedding (1998).
Her work has been in the New York Times, Food & Wine, Martha Stewart Living, Sartorialist, Garden & Gun, and others.
Her hats are available at Barneys New York and in her studio/hat shop.
Standard Talks: Rosanne Cash
To begin the evening at MAKESHIFT @ the Standard Talks, Rosanne Cash opened with a performance of “Fair and Tender Ladies,” a traditional Appalachian folk song that has been recorded by many singers. The song had often been performed by her step-mother, June Carter Cash.
Rosanne began by sharing her thoughts on crafting and writing music. In turn, she asked the audience to collaborate and “craft” a new song from the original version. This posed the question: “What can we learn from the field of music as we creatively approach a collaboration between amateurs and auteurs, makers and users?”
Following are the original lyrics, as sung by Rosanne:
“Fair and Tender Ladies”
Come all you fair and tender ladies
Take warning how you court young men
They’re like a star on a summer morning
They first appear and then they’re gone
They’ll tell to you some loving story
And they make you think that they love you well
Then away they’ll go and court some other
And leave you there in grief to dwell
I wish I was on some tall mountain
Where the ivy rock is black as ink
I’d write a letter to my false true lover
Whose cheeks are like the morning pink
Oh, love is handsome, love is charming
And love is pretty while it’s new
but love grows cold, as love grows older
And fades away like morning dew
Each member of the audience rewrote a portion of the song’s four stanzas. A selection was chosen for Rosanne to sing along with the audience at the end of the discussion.
In the “crafted” version of “Fair and Tender Ladies,” the structure, melody, and context were innovatively altered, creating a new song.
Following are the “crafted” lyrics, as sung together by Rosanne and the entire audience:
“Fair and Tender Ladies”
Come all you strong and courageous ladies
Take note how you court your men
They’re like a firefly on a summer night
They first glow and then they’re gone
They’ll toss to you some fleeting story
And they hope you think that they know you well
Then again they’ll go and court some daydreams
And leave you there in peace to dwell
I wish I was on some tall moonbeam
Where the broken rock is black as night
I’d write a song to my false sweet lover
Whose kisses are like the distant pink
Oh, love is a feeling, love is a song
And love is an emotion while it’s new
But love grows high, as love grows tall
And falls away like sweet dew