Amanda Shires & Jason Isbell Appear On ‘Mighty SONG Writers’ Debut Episode

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Amanda Shires and Jason Isbell discussed songwriting and performed together for the debut Mighty SONG Writers episode. The video series is produced by the media platform Literary Hub and the non-profit Mighty Writers, which teaches reading and writing to low-income and marginalized students in the Philadelphia area,.

Shires played fiddle while backed by Isbell on acoustic guitar on performances of “Parking Lot Pirouette,” “Break Out The Champagne” and “White Feather” off Shires’ 2018 album To The Sunset. The pair also discussed songwriting and shared some of the helpful advice they have received over the years.

“One of the best pieces of advice I ever got was when I was studying at Sewanee The University Of The South,” Shires says in the episode. “My professor, Andrew Hudgins — who is a fantastic and wonderful poet — told me that a lot of times when you’re writing, the actual start of where you think the start is, isn’t at the start. Like, your first paragraph, your first few verses, first lines or whatever it is … it’s usually you’re doing the work to get to the start. After having thought about that, some, and internalizing it, I found it to be true, and so now it’s easier for me to get rid of that beginning, working stuff and get to the actual start.

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“I like that,” Isbell responded. “So sometimes you’re finding your way to the story you want to tell. And then when you get to the beginning you can just go back and take all that stuff out, and start from the start.”

Donate to Might Writers here and watch Lit Hub’s debut episode of Mighty SONG Writers with Amanda Shires and Jason Isbell below:

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