Alt Country singer / songwriter Mary Gauthier brings the stories of fringe-dwelling characters into view through warm and candid songwriting. She comes into this through personal experience. Gauthier dropped out of school as a teen, stole the family car at 15 and was in detox at 16 and in jail at 18. These are the people she met on her journey.

After attending a culinary school, Gauthier opened a cajun restaurant in her native Louisiana, eventually selling her share of the restaurant to finance her second album. “Drag Queens in Limousines” won critical praise and earned her touring opportunities. A series of albums came in the 200s, with 2005’s “Mercy Now” winning her a New Artist of the Year Award from the Americana Music Association.

Mary Gauthier has had a solid career as a songwriter with a diverse range of artists recording her compositions including Tim McGraw, Betty LaVette, Jimmy Buffett and Boy George.

For many years she has been involved with Songwriting With Soldiers, a non-profit organization that uses songwriting as a catalyst for positive change. They offer participants a unique way to tell their stories, rebuild trust, release pain, and forge new bonds. In SWS retreat and workshop settings, service members are paired with professional songwriters to craft songs about their experiences, often about combat and the return home.

Mary Gauthier’s latest album, last year’s “Rifles and Rosary Beads” features 10 of the songs from the project.