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Lucinda Williams

Danny Clinch, Associated Press

Wedding bells at First Ave

  • Article by: CHRIS RIEMENSCHNEIDER
  • Star Tribune
  • September 9, 2009 - 5:17 PM

She has done a live Internet broadcast from there. She hung out there while recording her 2001 album "Essence" at a nearby studio. And she has performed there dozens of times. None of that compares to what alt-country singer Lucinda Williams has planned for her next stop at First Avenue nightclub in Minneapolis: She's getting married there.

Taking a cue from her hero Hank Williams, who married his second wife onstage in New Orleans, the Louisiana-born singer plans to wed her Twin Cities-bred beau during her Sept. 18 concert at First Ave.

Williams, 56, is engaged to former Best Buy executive Tom Overby, to whom she was introduced by friends about five years ago in Los Angeles, where they both now live. Overby has since become her manager and was the co-producer of last year's album, "Little Honey." The couple regularly hang out in Minnesota with his family and friends.

Williams' publicist at Lost Highway Records said the idea came from Lucinda's dad, poet and fellow Hank fan, Miller Williams. The plan is to squeeze a ceremony between her regular set and the encore. The couple will get a few days off, then head out on an ambitious fall tour marking her 30th anniversary as a recording artist.

It will be Williams' second time at the altar, as she was briefly married to Long Ryders drummer Greg Sowders in the 1980s. It will not be the club's first wedding. First Ave staffers recalled members of the local band Vox Medusa holding a wedding there onstage, and the club's former owner Allan Fingerhut had a wedding reception there.

"We're really excited about it," said general manager Nate Kranz, who found out about the plans when Williams' booking agent called him up and said, "I've got a weird one for you."

"We've had a lot of awesome shows with Lucinda over the years," Kranz said, "but this one will probably be the most memorable."

Chris Riemenschneider • 612-673-4658

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