Gretchen Peters has been making music for a long time now, and as befits a singer-songwriter who looks in about equal measure around at the world and inside herself for her material, her music changes with the years. This is even as her core obsessions, if you will—seeking a measure of consolation and sense of identity in a fractured, wounding world—continue to propel her creativity.
Last year, at age 61, she released “Dancing With the Beast,” a deeply felt set of meditations on aging, change, depression, family pain, even truck stop prostitution (no, that last one is not autobiographical).
All manner of topics, in other words, that befit an artist who confided to NPR last year in an interview: “I have a theory that there are two kinds of people—there’s people who find sad songs depressing, then there’s us.”
As someone who counts himself quite happily among that “us,” I found t...