If you want some sweet folk music, the hot ticket is Cook With Honey’s show Friday at The Annadine in Dodge Center.
Cook With Honey is a folk duo featuring Jane Foote and Carl Stephenson. On the heels of their 2020 release “Letting Go,” the duo just put out another album called “Piecing It Together.” They’ll feature some of the songs from their new record at their Annadine appearance.
Cook With Honey began its journey in 2015. Foote and Stephenson met on eHarmony, their musical collaboration started soon thereafter, and they’ve been complementing each other with harmonies ever since. They think of their music as a combination of ’70s acoustic folk, with a pinch of country and jazz thrown in. They hope the lyrics of their music meet the issues of our current world head-on.
Their new album, “Piecing It Together,” includes 11 tunes they wrote between December 2019 and December 2020.
Cook With Honey’s songs take a wary, yet positive view of the world. For instance, the track “Lean In,” which includes a grand choral harmony, offers the idea that “this world needs us to carry the passion and story that’s ours alone.”
One of the duo’s favorite songs from the record is called “Ali’s Song.” The song was written for a young woman in Rochester whom Foote describes as “one of the sweetest souls we have ever met.” The song includes some jazzy guitar riffs with a driving drum beat, and a solid bass groove layered with a repeating acoustic string riff that is reminiscent of a traditional string band.
Related: 2020 Rochester Record Roundup
In addition to the originals, the record also includes a cover of Stephen Foster’s “Hard Times.” Foote first heard the song when she sang in a theatrical chorus at Squashblossom Farm. While the song is originally from the 1850s, Foote said it seemed “relevant this past year when so many of us have experienced hard times with illness, work, school, and home lives turned upside down.”
Foote enjoys the initial song-writing experience while Stephenson’s strength is experimenting and “listening to what else the song wants.”
“It is great fun and a great example of playing on each other’s strengths while respecting our differences,” she said.
While recording the record, Stephenson said he settled in to a new way of creating and engineering the music that supports the spirit of the songs but also offers “fresh new sounds.”
At their live shows, Cook With Honey plays a mix of covers and originals.
“Carl has been a professional musician for his entire adult life, and is a pro at creating set lists which bring crowds along with familiar tunes, while still getting to share our own music,” Foote said.
She promises that at their live shows, the audience will get to hear Stephenson’s versions of Johnny Cash, Beatles, and even a Lady Gaga/Bradley Cooper duet.
For this show, The Annadine will admit only half its normal capacity to help with social distancing.
If you go
What: Cook With Honey
Where: The Annadine, 16 W. Main St., Dodge Center
When: 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 26. Contact the venue at 507-273-9530 in advance to reserve a spot.