This record is about a band that found each other and also found a home. It’s about a couple of magic nights SistaStrings and I spent, crammed into the back of a listening room called the Cafe Carpe — jammed full of people, joyfully playing the songs we’d learned over our few years of becoming an ensemble, all happily unaware that the world was already changing, that because of the pandemic already underway the entire world of listening rooms and intimate live audiences was about to disappear for who-knows how long.
I started playing at the Cafe Carpe when I was a kid. At the time, I thought it was the coolest little venue I’d ever seen. After thirty years of international travel I realize that it’s one of the most soulful, deep listening rooms in the world. I’ve developed a reverence for the place, a camaraderie with the characters who work there. I’ve slept in their home above the venue (it’s an old brick building on the Rock River in the small Midwestern city of Fort Atkinson) countless times. I’ve come to love the people and the room, to curate a tiny winter festival there, to visit even when I’m not playing a gig. I’ve bonded with artists who were a generation older than me, played countless song-swaps with my peers, and begun mentoring the next generation. — Peter Mulvey
Available as a 2-record set now.