Song stories 5




“Hey Buddy” or in full if you like “Hey Buddy, You’ve Got A Tender Heart”

This is a song that came completely out of the Gretchen Peters songwriting workshop in Nashville. It was an emotionally exhausting few days for most of us I think. About twenty of us in a room for three days, mostly strangers though a few had met at previous workshops. Playing songs to Gretchen and Tom Douglas, listening to them talk and sing, an intimate concert with Gretchen, Kim Richey and Matraca Berg. Gretchen playing my new friend Robert’s song on guitar as he sang, Barry Walsh charting (Nashville notation) as she played. 

On the third day Gretchen introduced her special guest. Rodney Crowell. One of my favourite songwriters. They chatted for about an hour or so, Rodney played a few songs to illustrate points and we were just a few feet away. I asked Lydia (the organiser) if we could get a group photo, she kindly sorted it out and then that was it. Days of a new challenge, being wildly out of my comfort zone, the emotional impact of hearing others’ songs and then listening to Rodney Crowell in this setting, and I started weeping, dashing out of the room. Others had over the three days, it was my turn. A few people asked how I was, and it was difficult to explain. Lydia got it, had a word with Rodney and he gave me a hug, had a chat and told me “Hey Buddy, you’ve got a tender heart”. 

The last verse is completely about the workshop. 



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