Newly-released CD highlights SMWC musical talents

December 19th, 2016 | SMWC

Tracy Richardson: Live at the Cecilian - CD cover

By Dianne Frances D. Powell

If singer-songwriter Tracy Richardson, Ph.D., had to pick a favorite out of the 14 songs in her newly-released CD, she said it would have to be the first track, “Superwoman Blues.”

“It’s a first-person account of a woman who is trying to juggle job and family and children and all the things that go along with that,” said Richardson, a Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College (SMWC) faculty member and alumna. “It resonates with people especially women who are trying to juggle a lot of things in life.”

Showcasing Richardson’s beautiful voice and piano skills, this song and other songs with lyrics Richardson personally wrote or co-wrote are featured in the CD, “Tracy Richardson: Live at the Cecilian,” released in October and is now available for download online.

“I’ve been writing songs since I was very young. It’s just a passion of mine,” Richardson, chairperson of SMWC’s music and theatre department, said. “The music that I write is not always autobiographical but it is influenced by my experiences. I try to create music that’s authentic, that touches on universal experiences.”

For example, she wrote “She will rise again (Bridgeton Bridge song),” just after a fire destroyed a bridge where she holds happy childhood memories. Another song, “All these women” was inspired by the Sisters of Providence, her mother Delores Collings of Parke County, and other women who influenced her life. Yet another, “The better part of a woman,” honors women veterans, especially those wounded in action.

Recorded during a live event in April at the Cecilian Auditorium inside the historic Conservatory of Music, the new CD is very much an SMWC project, Richardson said. Her College colleagues and students worked with her on the production, engineering, lighting, design, photography and other tasks to complete the CD. She expresses gratitude to the College administration for supporting her project.

As she developed the CD project that utilized the College’s beautiful space and musical instruments, her intention was clear: “I want to highlight music at The Woods,” she said.

Tracy Richardson playing the piano

This CD shows not only the talents by SMWC faculty and staff but also the songwriting and musical expertise Richardson shares with her students in the undergraduate and graduate music programs. “It helps to highlight our faculty expertise in composition and songwriting. I believe it will help attract future students who want to major in music or music therapy and also want to do songwriting and/or composition,” Richardson said of the CD’s contribution to the Woods.

Born and raised in Parke County and now a Terre Haute resident, Richardson has been writing songs since age 10; she was singing and playing the keyboard at local events by age 15. She’s a 1988 music therapy graduate of The Woods and has a master’s in counseling and a Ph.D. in counselor education from Indiana State University. In March, she was inducted into the Wabash Valley Musicians Hall of Fame and is currently serving in the organization’s board of directors. She previously recorded a CD in 1997.

Richardson is hopeful her recent work brings attention to the College and its long-running, successful music program. To order the CD, e-mail tracy(at)tracyrichardsonmusic.com. The cost is $15 plus $3 shipping. It is also available on iTunes, Amazon, Tidal, Apple Music, and Google Play. For more info about Richardson’s music, visit www.tracyrichardsonmusic.com.

“Tracy Richardson: Live at the Cecilian”

  • Piano and Vocals: Tracy Richardson
  • Producers: Tracy Richardson and John S. McIntyre
  • Recording Engineer and Mastering: John S. McIntyre
  • Sound Engineer and Lighting: Anthony Dinkel
  • Photography and Graphic Design: Amanda LeeAnn Perry
  • Promotional Flyer: Sue Weatherwax