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Dear friends,

After a multi-year recruitment effort, we announce with joy that we have persuaded DG Strong to write for us. He’s the biggest reader and movie watcher we know, an omnivore of things to listen to, to watch, to read. We will continue to contribute our own Knit to This and Lazy Sunday posts, but frankly, we’re thrilled to have DG pointing us to what’s worth our attention.

Kay and Ann

Look, it’s OK to be sad. Mary Chapin Carpenter says so, and as far as I’m concerned, what MCC says goes.

While “It’s OK to be Sad” is the 2020-iest song on her intimate new album The Dirt and the Stars, it’s not the only one that seems to have its finger right on the melancholy mood we’re all living with on a daily basis right now.

But don’t be fooled into thinking that The Dirt and the Stars is a bunch of quiet, moony songs meant to be accompanied by various flavored international coffees. She gives us a lot to think about with this set: politics, abuse, love, loss … even a childhood road trip provides some fodder for the closing title song, which is a flat-out stunner.

This collection can be pointed and angry and funny—sometimes all at the same time; I’ll leave you to puzzle out who “American Stooge” is about—and all of it is, typically for MCC, clever and literate. Though she doesn’t attempt to rhyme it, “quotidien” shows up in a song and if that’s not the Mary Chapin Carpenter-est thing of the year, I don’t know what is. For all of that, though, it’s never less than effortless and beautiful, never less than thoughtful and smart, never less than as assured a record as she’s ever made. Just go listen to it. You’ll see.


Available on Amazon and wherever you find your music online.

About The Author

DG Strong took up knitting in 2014. He lives in Nashville with his sister, her rat terrier and a hound dog named Opal. He has a blog of drawings and faintly ridiculous rambling called The Psychopedia—there are worse ways to spend your afternoon.

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  • The picture of the young girl reminds me everyday about a traumatic accident. So please understand why I posted on social media. As for the rest of the fun;knitting to music is awesome.Blood ty

  • Thanks for this review. It sounds like exactly what I need to listen to while I knit on this rainy afternoon.

  • One of my favorite concerts heard at Wolftrap.

  • I’m a grumpy old lady who doesn’t much listen to current popular music, but I must say that DG Strong’s bio is, as they say, awesome.

  • This is great news! A warm welcome to DG. I had the great pleasure of meeting DG at a MDK Knitting Getaway. I remember particularly how he had me laughing within minutes of meeting him. His warmth and charm will grace these pages, I’m looking forward to it!

  • Welcome! I’m already a fan! Looked at your blog and will enjoy reading that as well!

  • Making a good thing better! Congratulations!

  • Welcome, DG! I once had a rebranding client who insisted on having their dog in their logo (and not just an artistic representation of said dog, but an actual photo was required), so I feel your pain. Just started your blog and love it already.

  • MCC is the best! A companion listen to Dirt and The Stars is the podcast One Story, MCC talking with Sarah Kay about the songs on the album. Listening to her talk about her songwriting is fascinating!

  • Like

  • OMG thank you so much for bringing me back to MCC. I loved her on country music stations decades ago and have wondered why she disappeared. I guess I just had to look! You are so right, the song is stunning. Brought me to tears and smiles simultaneously. No question that I’ll be adding this collection to my collection!

  • Looking forward to reading more of DG! Love that the MDK fam is growing.

  • I love the idea, knitting to music, clears the mind of negativity and fills it with a positive beat. and I’m sure that the knitting will be better!

  • I read DG Strong’s blog awhile back, it is so funny, so fresh! I’m glad he’s here on MDK…but please will he consider bringing the blog back?? From A Fan

  • I LOVE Mary Chapin Carpenter! I saw her in a stadium decades ago, must admit I haven’t kept track of her for a while. I definitely need some new music, so thank you!!

  • Love Love Love Mary Chapin Carpenter! One of my local favorites when young & carefree in Washington, DC. Mary is smart & Talented! So glad she’s still making music!

  • THANK YOU for introducing me to this album, DG. Perfect for knitting. And cooking. And driving to my friend’s house. And . . . you get the idea, it’s marvelous.

  • Quotidien. Exactly.

  • oh, the guitar work. beautiful song!

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