Ex-rock singer gives up stage for pulpit

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Sherry Cothran Woolsey dreamed of being either a rock star or a missionary while growing up in west Tennessee.

She got close to the first dream in the late 1990s as lead singer of the Nashville-based Evinrudes, a band that once opened for the Spin Doctors and the Goo Goo Dolls and had a hit with the song “Drive Me Home.”

Then the Evinrudes lost their contract with Mercury Records. The struggle of trying to make it in the music business took its toll and eventually her marriage and the band broke up.

“I just didn’t want that kind of life for myself,” Woolsey said….read more

The right rockin’ Rev. Sherry Cothran

KISS guitarist Ace Frehley once superglued every piece of furniture in his hotel room to the ceiling. Ozzy Osbourne was arrested for relieving himself on The Alamo. The Evinrudes’ lead singer Sherry Cothran, on the other hand, used to read an anthology of Thomas Merton’s essays on the tour bus.

Perhaps this is why The Evinrudes were never featured on VH1’s Behind the Music.

She may be a little light in the “tossing TVs off the hotel balcony” column, but Cothran boasts some bonafide rock ‘n roll street cred: a hit song, tours opening for the likes of Spin Doctors and the Goo Goo Dolls, a photo in Rolling Stone magazine.  Read more….

Sherry Cothran: Prophets, Harlots, Witches and Warriors — Untamed Women of the Old Testament 

“I’m really intrigued by the stories of women in the Old Testament, particularly ones who are kind of wild.” Not exactly the kind of thing I remember hearing in the anti-feminist woman-created-from-man’s-rib sermons of my church-going youth. But Sherry Cothran is a newer, much more interesting kind of pastor who appeals to people regardless of which side of the God divide they find themselves. “I wanted to look into their stories,” Cothran goes on to say, “and all the ways they had been branded: prostitute, witch, disposable daughter. I wanted to unhide some of these women.” Join her for a storytelling event at Scarritt-Bennett Center’s interfaith campus today, where Cothran, who’s gained accolades as lead singer of The Evinrudes, will intersperse songs about Old Testament women with lectures about the scripture that inspired them.

— Laura Hutson

If the Rev. Sherry Cothran Woolsey sleeps, it’s hard to imagine when.

In addition to pastoring two churches, she helped found Dreamweave (http://dreamweavebags.com/), a program that teaches incarcerated women a job skill; directs the Nashville Jung Circle; lectures and performs concerts; is writing two books, and just completed a new CD on wisdom literature.

“I really try to look at the gifts I’ve been given and honing in on how those gifts can speak,” she says. “I’m trying to be receptive to the projects that come along and inspire me, putting them out there the best I can and seeing where they lead.”

“Ancient Voices In The Modern World: ‘Sunland’ The New Album From Sherry Cothran

Seamlessly blending the worlds of ancient text and modern music, singer/songwriter, Sherry Cothran, has revived extraordinary stories of some of the more obscure female characters from the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament through her stunning new album ‘Sunland’Combining over 15 years of experience as a musician (best known as the lead singer for the award winning band The Evinrudes) with her current profession as pastor/preacher of a multi-cultural, urban congregation in Nashville, Cothran brings a fresh perspective to the practice of creative and thoughtful religion in the 21st century.    Read More…..

Sherry Cothran’s “Strange Woman”: Popular Music as Parahomiletic

Homiletics is always a timely, and time-saturated reflection of who God was and is and continues to be.  It is “expository” and banks on memory, and, as we all know, memory is a theologically contested domain. Memory can be selective. Memory can be influenced by ideology, patriarchy, the will to power, and suffering. How one re-members the past in the present is the key to homiletics.

It is in this contested homiletical domain of memory that we experience the music of Sherry Cothran on her CD entitled Sunland. Cothran wrestles with the memory we have of the women of the Old Testament – Rahab, Jepthah’s daughter, the Woman of Endor, Jael, Deborah, Huldah, and the Strange Woman of Proverbs.

We need more of THIS kind of music. Deeply poetic, educated, devotional, grounded in faith, and always re-thinking biblical truth for our world in new and helpful ways.
We need more of THIS kind of music. Deeply poetic, educated, devotional, grounded in faith, and always re-thinking biblical truth for our world in new and helpful ways.   Read more..

Sermons in Song: Sherry Cothran

In the late 1990s, Sherry Cothran was the lead singer for the popular indie-rock band The Evinrudes. After the band broke up, Cothran followed a calling to divinity school, and is now a pastor in the United Methodist Church. As she leads her congregation, she combines her skills as a musician with preaching, resulting in what she refers to as “song sermons.”

Cothran has collected several of these song sermons on her new album, Sunland, which explores the voices of women from the ancient religious world.  Read more here….

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