Mary Gauthier’s “How You Learn to Live Alone” Gets on TV


Mary Gauthier gives a poetic look inside her heart on her upcoming album, Trouble and Love. Meanwhile, one of its most emotional songs, “How You Learn to Live Alone,” has already found a home on ABC’s Nashville.

“I wrote this song with my friend Gretchen Peters and it contains a long list of firsts,” Gauthier tells CMT Edge. “It was our first co-write, it was Buddy Miller’s first placement as music supervisor for the TV show Nashville. It was the first song of Nashville’s season two, and it was my first time to work with the legendary master of twang, Duane Eddy. All in all, it’s been a magical little song.”

As you’d expect, the characters of Nashville are always getting involved with the wrong person. However, on “How You Learn to Live Alone,” the narrative follows a sad soul trying to get untangled from somebody — and getting back on track seems a long way off.

“We wrote it in a very short period of time, I’d say less than two hours. It came fast, and I am not sure how we did it,” Gauthier says. “This is always how it goes with songs like this, I forget writing them. It’s almost like it happens in a dream. I remember Gretchen sitting at her little red piano working on a melody. I remember her saying maybe we should do a list — ‘First you fall, then you …’ and so on, and the rest is a blur.”

She adds, “Lines came to me, lines came to her, and we rode the flow. We emerged with this song in short time, did a rough demo, I sent it to Buddy Miller and [Nashville creator] Callie Khouri the next day, they loved it, and boom, we had a song placed on TV. They always told me this could happen in Nashville. Exciting stuff!”

Mary Gauthier will release Trouble and Love on June 10. Listen to the CMT Edge premiere of “How You Learn to Live Alone.”