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6 Degrees Entertainment

Mary Chapin Carpenter – One Night Lonely
(Mary Chapin Carpenter / DVD / G / 2021 / PBS)

Overview: In November 2020, acclaimed singer, songwriter and musician Mary Chapin Carpenter performed a special concert in her favorite venue, Virginia’s legendary Wolf Trap.

Taped during the pandemic, the one-of-a-kind event featured a rare solo performance by Carpenter ... to an empty house!

DVD Verdict: A rare solo performance, the one-of-a-kind show was recorded this past November and features songs from across her acclaimed career including several from her latest record, The Dirt And The Stars.

One Night Lonely lovingly showcases Carpenter alone on stage, a guitar tech occasionally in shot (as she swapped between her Greven and Martin guitars) and opens in black and white.

The singer symbolically removing her mask before launching into The Age of Miracles, her back to the empty auditorium and then a backdrop descends and color gradually bleeds into the picture – a red-patterned rug, subtle lighting, et al.

Dressed simply, her long blonde hair in a ponytail, Carpenter says nothing during the actual performance, merely smiles that trademark shy, slightly lopsided smile.

A perfectly paced, quietly constructed set, with songs drawn from across the years, and performed here, as it were, unplugged, this show was the most perfect opportunity to appreciate not only her sophisticated song-writing and distinctive voice, but her guitar playing, that’s for sure.

Of the performance, Carpenter reflects, “Strange yet magical, those are my words to describe the feeling of being alone on this hometown stage at Wolf Trap. I was struck by the stillness of the empty seats and the lonely echo of all this space.”

“While I missed seeing the audience and feeling that connection, I was so grateful for the opportunity to play a show during the pandemic shut down.”

1. The Age of Miracles 2. Chasing What’s Already Gone 3. Farther Along and Further In 4. Sometimes Just The Sky 5. I Have A Need For Solitude 6. Something Tamed, Something Wild 7. Houston 8. I Take My Chances 9. Grand Central Station 10. All Broken Hearts Break Differently 11. This Shirt 12. I Am A Town 13. Stones In The Road 14. Heroes And Heroines 15. Old D-35 16. This Is Love 17. John Doe No. 24 18. Don’t Need Much To Be Happy 19. He Thinks He’ll Keep Her 20. Why Shouldn’t We 21. Twilight 22. Late For Your Life 23. The Hard Way 24. Between The Dirt And The Stars 25. The Things That We Are Made Of, and finally 26. Traveler’s Prayer.

One Night Lonely follows the release of Carpenter’s widely hailed new album, The Dirt And The Stars, which is out now via Lambent Light Records.

Produced by Ethan Johns (Ray LaMontagne, Paul McCartney, Kings of Leon) the album was recorded entirely live at Peter Gabriel’s Real World Studios in southwest England and was released to widespread critical praise.

This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.

Official PBS DVD Purchase Link