Poor Claire Lynch. She’s had to go through the Summer without her bass player, Mark Schatz, who has been out touring with Nickel Creek. He’s due back in the middle of September, but now comes news that guitarist Matt Wingate is leaving the group.
Jim Hurst will be filling in this next few weeks, returning to a spot with Claire that he held for many years. That will run through Labor Day, and then Matt will return through the IBMA World of Bluegrass in late September, after which a new guitarist will be announced.
Though all of the artists involved are top professionals, Claire admits that she will be glad to get all the shuffling out of the way and settle back to a regular touring group. But she is delighted to work with Jim again, starting this weekend.
“It will be a really fine reunion (albeit temporary) with the great Jim Hurst. I’m looking forward to it.”
Claire also mentioned that she is nearly finished with her upcoming Christmas album, which will be called Holiday. She made the point that it’s not wholly a Christmas project, as she includes one Hanukkah song as well in honor of her dear friend and soon-to-be-returning bassist Mark Schatz.
A number of new songs will be included, though Claire said the bulk of the material is drawn from “the sort of songs you want to hear putting up Christmas decorations.”
Hopefully she will have copies for sale by World of Bluegrass.
This one is self-produced, created outside of her arrangement with Compass Records, to whom she will return for the next album after Holiday.