Abigail Washburn never set out to be a songwriter or a recording artist. So when she found herself on stage in a smoke filled Beijing club playing her banjo and singing old time Appalachian mountain music in Chinese to a packed house, she was as surprised as anyone.
“During my Freshman year at Colorado College, I joined a summer program trip to China,” Washburn recalled. “It had a profound effect on me. I discovered a Chinese culture that was so deep and ancient; it changed my perspective on America.”
On her return to the States, Washburn...