On December 24, 2011, Judith, Emily and Ellen performed together for the first time at a late-night Christmas Eve service featuring American folk music. Throughout rehearsals, the songs fell in to place in an easy and gratifying way, and the service itself was magical. All three women felt it should not be the last concert.
Believing in their unique potential as a trio, firm friendships began to form and “The Early Mays” (a name drawn from a character in one of Judith’s songs) jumped into their first project: a Christmas recording!!
In the sweltering heat of July and August 2012, late at night in the sanctuary of St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Pittsburgh, the ladies gathered to make live stereo recordings of their sessions. Starting out with the idea of making a record of Appalachian music, they quickly began arranging and writing their own wintry songs, inspired by American folk traditions, personal events, poetry, and each other. The “Christmas Sessions” will be released on Saturday, December 1, 2012 with a concert and celebration at St. Andrews.
The Early Mays continue to rehearse and perform their other non-Christmas sets, drawn initially from Judith’s “endless stream of great songs.” (Anand Nayak, producer.) Emily is really excited about what lies ahead and savors the chance to sing in three-part harmonies and play her fiddle once again; Ellen is extremely happy to be back to singing songs by living songwriters – not just the old songs — especially by these two amazingly talented women, and to be trying her hand at song writing; Judith is thrilled to be in a band again after thinking that might never happen again, and to have other voices singing her works.