Back in the home town paper!  http://www.gainesvilletimes.com/archives/117990/

 

Gainesville native Amy Henderson sings for cancer research

Free concert set for Monday at Luna’s restaurant in downtown

Great music? Check. A great time? Check. All to support a great cause? Check, check and check.

Musician Amy Henderson is returning to Gainesville to perform in front of her hometown crowd. She will sing at 7 p.m. Monday, July 20, at Luna’s restaurant off the downtown square at 200 Main St. SW.

Henderson began playing the ukulele in the seventh grade and later moved onto the guitar while attending Camp Glisson in Dahlonega. The first song she could play on the six-string was “Leaving on a Jet Plane.”

Upon graduating from Furman University in South Carolina, she moved all across the East Coast, playing in countless bands to feed her musical addiction. Then, in 2003, she released her original CD, “Back Down.” For the next several years, Henderson took her musical rhythm and style — which she describes as “a little alternative pop with some rootsy Southerness built right in” — to musical venues in the Southeast.

Following the arrival of small children, however, Henderson has decreased her playing time in 2010. Therefore, she looks forward to sharing her music when she can, especially in her hometown.

“It’s fun to see people and friends,” she said. “It’s like homecoming.”

And this homecoming has the bonus of raising funds for the Creeper Trail Ride to End Cancer, which is an annual trail ride beginning on the Creeper Trail in Abingdon, Va.

“This is a beautiful trail ride that everyone rides and everyone raises money for, it’s so fun,” Henderson said.

While neither the musician nor Luna’s is charging for the concert, donations will be accepted. The money will benefit the trail ride, which funds rare cancer research at the University of Texas at MD Anderson Cancer Centers in Houston, Texas. The trail ride has contributed more than $450,000 to cancer research.

The cause is close to Henderson’s heart, as she has known many people who have been affected by the disease.

“My parent’s next-door neighbor recovered from cancer,” she said.

Henderson encourages people to come out and support the great cause because raising funds for cancer research doesn’t get much easier.

“Come on out, have dinner and a cocktail and enjoy yourself,” she said. “It could even be like a Gainesville High School reunion.”

Amy Henderson is One Rockin’ Lady Andrew Cothern April 27, 2011 Read More: Amy Henderson, GayRVA Live, The Camel Singer-songwriter Amy Henderson has been a Richmond music staple for several years, making a name for herself. Right now, she’s playing with the Orderlies and plays with a few other bands. You can catch her every Wednesday as the host and usual performer at Open Mic at Shenanigan’s. Henderson will be performing at the Camel as part of the GayRVA Live concert series on Monday, May 2. We caught up with her to get to know her a little better. GayRVA: Describe the type of music you play. Henderson: I would call it acoustic alternative pop with a tinge of sass. What are your shows usually like? Do you normally play certain areas? Totally depends on the venue. Usually the mood is festive and fun – but depending on the setting can be more contemplative, particularly if I play some of my more somber originals. But even my most depressing songs seem to have a ray of hope and sunshine to them. I have been sticking close to home lately. I have two small kids and it is hard to be away from them for too long. I will be playing in Damascus, Va. and Isle of Palms, SC this spring and summer, but that’s about as far as I’ll go lately. Who are your musical influences? I grew up listening to a lot of Beatles, Fleetwood Mac, Beach Boys, REM, and…Olivia Newton-John. When the Indigo Girls came out, I was really drawn to their music. As a child of the pop-synth 80s, you just didn’t hear anybody playing acoustic guitar and sing and write like they did. They, of course, were a huge influence. I remember living in Atlanta and they would host an open mic at this little bar called Trackside Tavern and we would go play. They were amazing to see in such a small space. Very inspirational. What made you decide to perform at GayRVA Live? GayRVA has always been so supportive of the arts scene in Richmond. I’d do anything to pay them back! Check out more of Amy Henderson at amyhenderson.com. GayRVA Live is Monday, May 2 at 8 p.m. with doors opening at 7 p.m. DJ Amy Alderman will be spinning tracks before and after the show. Tickets are $5 at the door. Get more information at gayrva.com/live. Andrew Cothern is a music lover and media professional in Richmond, Va. specializing in photography and video production. Check out his music blog Richmond Playlist.
Musicians Band Together for ROSMY GayRVA Staff April 20, 2009 Read More: $3 Bills, Amy Henderson, Andy Moore, Babes, Dan Shmuk, Endymion, fundraiser, Julie Clark, Musicians for ROSMY, Radcliffe Burt, Richmond, Richmond Organization for Sexual Minority Youth, ROSMY, Shenanigans, Three Dollar Bills Amy Henderson strums her guitar and hums a tune into her harmonica onstage at Shenanigans on MacArthur Avenue. It’s open-mic night and Wednesday regular Erin Eels loves Henderson’s socks. “Oh, Amy always performs without shoes on.” Eel’s partner Erin Collin’s says. Henderson is one of the six artists and groups performing at Friday’s Musicians for ROSMY benefit concert at Babes of Carytown. She says organizations like ROSMY give GLBTQ youth a safe place to talk about their sexuality. Henderson grew up in Georgia and said there was nothing like ROSMY in place. “It just wasn’t an option,” she said. “Having that there, would have made a huge difference. Just to know it’s okay.” The indie folk singer didn’t come out until she was 28 and already married to a man. She said having a support group would have helped sort things out. She jokes that it probably would have saved her time and money. ”When your dad says, ‘I’m glad you got married. I thought you were gay.’ You know something’s up,” she says. “Half of my bridesmaids were gay – there were red flags everywhere, but that’s what you get when you just don’t know.” Performing at Friday’s Event: Amy Henderson (Pictured Above): Self-described indie folk guitarist. Radcliffe Burt: Played the guitar for 25 years and does a mean version of “Rocket Man” that will make you cry. Dan Schmuk: Originally from Germany, he’s a mix of Jack Johnson and Jason Mraz. Sings in four languages. Andy Moore: Acoustic rock with a KT Tunstall vibe. Julie Clark: Award-winning acoustic folk singer. Endymion: Equal parts gay and straight. Like an iPod on shuffle. Has a violinist. Collins, who is helping plan the event sponsored by the $3 Bills, is a board member of ROSMY. She remembers the coming out process. “Having the community and resources available [of ROSMY], that pain will be lessoned and that process will be easier,” she says. “In the adult community, we need to remember how hard that was and we should do everything we can not to let kids go through those things.” “It’s paving the way,” Eels adds. Collins believes it is the community’s responsibility to fight for the rights of youth as much as we are fighting for the rights of marriage and equal rights. Sitting at the table as Henderson plays another song in her set, the two Erins talk about what has changed and what still needs to. They want kids to be able to take who they want to the prom or to be able to do something as simple as feel comfortable talking to a school guidance counselor. “Yes, we need to focus on our civil rights, but they are minors,” Collins says. “They don’t have any voting power. It’s going to take the rest of us to ensure that they are protected.” Collins borrows Henderson’s guitar and starts her set. Now, she’s singing Howie Day’s “Collide.” Collins and Eels’ band, Endymion, will perform Friday night. “It’s great that we have five other amazing performers donating their time and talent to this purpose – regardless of their sexuality,” Collins says. While Collins performs, Henderson takes a short break to mingle with friends. Radcliffe Burt scoots up to the table. According to Collins, he does a mean version of Rocket Man that will make you cry. Burt’s been playing guitar for 25 years and got involved once he heard about the cause. “There’s an issue with suicide rates among young people and that sucks,” Burt says. “If there’s anything I can do, then I want to help.” Collins returns to the table. She’s excited about the caliber of musicians they have rounded up and asks a couple of straight friends at the table if they’ll be at the event. One friend asks, “Is this concert a one time offer?” ”No,” Collins answers assured with a smile. “This is just the beginning
Amy Henderson's done it all. Waited tables. Worked at an orphanage. Taught history. But her love of music led her to her latest job as an occupational safety officer at VCU. . Although Amy as an MA in History, she found she couldn't do both music and teach at the same time. Teaching took her days- and her nights. "As a teacher you're on stage every morning and grading papers and preparing at night. But as a safety officer it's eight hours and you're done. And you're free to take on you next job, " performing something she calls "alternative folk." Whether she's playing solo at her weekly Shenanigan's gig or playing with a group called the Orderlies, Amy Henderson keeps busy. When she's not performing or working her day job, she's writing songs. The inspiration for her lyrics comes from personal experiences like breakups. "Whne you're miserable you write the best songs. I'm pretty happy right now so I'm having trouble writing. No one wants an album full of sap." Like Rachel Leyco, Amy finds Richmond challenging for original artists because of Richmonders' love for cover bands. "People like songs they already know. You can either play original music at art galleries and make no money or play covers at places like the Tobacco Company and get paid well." So besides balancing her day job and night gigs, Amy also balances both kinds of music, covers and originals. She admits it's hard to do it all. "I make lists. Sometimes I get it all done. Sometimes I don't. But I've got a list in my pocket all the time, " says Amy. In the end, Amy Henderson admits she's not out to be American Idol. Instead, she'd rather be like Patty Griffin - under the radar, but so respected it doesn't matter. "There's so many fly-by-night bands. I would rather maintain small fame but keep integrity."
Amy's got some good songs here. They're ubercatchy with a rootsy bounce. Her voice is smooth, but with a hint of firebrand. Like if she really wanted to, she could just rock like there is no tomorrow. I love the rawness of the disc. "Photograph Eyes" is my favorite tune. It's kind of gritty and dirty. It seems to move like a slander or personal vendetta against someone, smoky with attitude."
Amy Henderson was good. I've heard her on the "Out of the Blue Review" radio show and was hooked on her vocal abilities, from growling to lullabys in the same song. Seeing her live was even better. She's one of the few people who can really smile and sing.
Chick singer. Acoustic guitar. Insightful, occasionally heart-on-the-sleeve lyrics. Not exactly a unique approach. So while the career counselor might encourage Amy Henderson to consider a different avenue to folk/rock fame, the rest of us will listen to the 9 tracks on BACK DOWN and beg her to keep on keepin
[Henderson] is a deft guitarist, plucking out tunes with ease, and her voice has a creamy quality to it. January, 2004
Atlantian-turned Richmonder Amy Henderson has a longstanding gig at Shenanigans every Wednesday night, warming up the Northside neighborhood haunt with her sunny acoustic songs and cheery rapport. It's hard to miss Henderson's songwriting influences when listening to the music (Indigo Girls) – but her rhythmic, buoyant folk rock has a big heart all its own, distinguished by Henderson's rich, smoky voice.
Atlantian-turned Richmonder Amy Henderson is always a cheerful voice on the Richmond music scene. Her sunny acoustic songs and warm rapport with the audience have made the singer/songwriter a local fave.
Flattering, in a strange way?? It?s hard to believe Amy Henderson, who sings while smiling, writes such sad songs. Not all the songs on this CD are sad, just eight of the nine. [Amy note: actually 6 of the 9 are sad and the others have a quiet hope to them.]. But even when you're listening to a song about heartbreak, you see Amy's smile in your mind. What I don't see are all these other musicians. Christine Schup, David Zeus Henderson, John Vondra, George Howard and John Morand are all good, but when I see Amy play live, it's only with John Leedes on guitar. And that's all she needs. I think David Zeus Henderson (who may be her brother) [He is..] understands this. The three songs he engineered on this disc are just as she performs them live. The other six, engineered by Morand, would be impossible to recreate on stage without the whole band and an additional harp player and back up singer. Personally, I like all the production on Can't Help Myself because everything sounds better with a banjo, but most of the extras only distract, especially the wood block (or cow bell) featured on Now I'm Even Better. It takes my mind off what drew me to Henderson in the first place: her great lyrics and heartfelt vocals. -Richmond Music Journal, November 2003
During adolescence, she tried playing different instruments in order to find the one that fit her perfectly. Today she is trying out different careers and discovering that music fits her to a T. Under the single spotlight, Amy Henderson performed a solo acoustic set at Shenanigans, located at 4017 Macarthur Ave., on Wed., Feb. 2 for a roomful of friends, regulars and folks out for the evening. At the bar and tables customers spent the night eating, drinking and talking with friends. But every now and then, someone would look up and pay a little more attention to the lady on stage behind her acoustic guitar. After spending time in Boston, Amy Henderson returned to Richmond in 1996 to bring her musical career to life. She reflects on time that could have been spent writing music and performing. “Knowing what I know about the whole scene I could have really taken advantage of that while I was up there,” she said, adding that the missed time has inspired her to get back to her passion. Working during the day at Virginia Commonwealth University as an occupational safety officer supplies Henderson with free evenings to share her music with the city, she said. “I wish I could [play music] full-time. I’m trying to but I like to have a house. I’d like to not live in my car.” With stark white shirt, blue jeans and socks, because she kicked her shoes off, Henderson may look like the stereotypical folk singer at first glance. But look a little closer and one can see the sparkle in her eye as she works toward her goal of becoming a big fish in a small pond. How would you describe your sound? “I have come up with alternative- acoustic –folk –Americana,” Henderson said. “I have a lot of different songs. It’s not just folk and it’s not rock and it’s not completely Americana. I just took everything that kinda sounded like me and threw it all into one thing.” Why should someone pick up your CD? “I think it’s really good. I’m really proud of it,” Henderson said. “People I have played it for love it. I have gotten a really good response from it. It’s accessible. It’s poppy enough without being trite.” Where do you get inspiration for the music you write? “It used to be personal stuff. Almost like a diary. It’s fun to listen to old tapes and old CDs cause its like oh that’s what I was doing at that time of my life. Now I do that but I also look elsewhere for inspiration. I’m playing with different rhythms. I try to write about different things.” What impact does music have on your life? “It changed my profession,” Henderson said. “I was a history teacher for a long time. I realized I couldn’t play music and do history. You can only have so many videos the day after a gig. The job I’m doing now, my daytime job, is eight to four. You’re done. There’s no homework and it’s very, very flexible. It totally changed my profession so I can really work on what I really love.” What does it feel like to be on stage? “It’s completely comfortable because I have been doing it for so long. In December I was out of town for a while so I didn’t play here for like a month. I find that if I don’t do it I crave it. It’s a need. It’s a total rush. It’s like skydiving.” How have people responded to your music? “This is obviously not a listening room. People are doing their thing. They’re talking, they’re smoking, they’re playing. I used to get really frustrated cause are they really listening? I was talking to people and they are like, I really like this song about this. That made me feel better. And I have actually seen some of the regular people here singing my songs.” February, 2005

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