By Whitney Pastorek
September 02, 2009 at 01:00 PM EDT

She teased us with guest spots on two country records this year, backing Dierks Bentley on “Beautiful World,” and Jack Ingram on “Seeing Stars,” and proving herself to be precisely the earthy collaborator these country boys need to cut through Nashville’s oft-oily sheen. But for rabid Patty Griffin fans like yours truly — sitting here waiting since 2007’s Children Running Through for new music — that’s not enough. Thankfully, details on her upcoming gospel album are finally starting to sneak out: Recorded in the Nashville Downtown Presbyterian Church, the current title seems to be, appropriately, Downtown Church. It was produced by Buddy Miller, it’s slated for an early 2010 release, and the folkie’s dream list of guest vocalists includes Buddy, Julie Miller, Emmylou Harris, Shawn Colvin, Raul Malo, and Jim Lauderdale. Amidst the classic gospel songs and hymns, there will be two new songs penned by Patty. And if you head to, you can check out some live videos of her performing songs presumed to be on the album. (Hey, Radiohead‘s not the only band with minutia-obsessed fans.)

I’ve scored one more treat for all my fellow Patty lovers: A preview of her contribution to upcoming compilation album The Best Is Yet to Come: The Songs of Cy Coleman. The Great American Songbook composer finds himself lovingly feted by some amazing ladies — besides Patty, the album includes renditions of Coleman favorites from Fiona Apple, Jill Sobule, Madeline Peyroux, Sam Phillips, Nikka Costa, and more. It’s out September 15th, but you can stream Griffin’s mournfully minor-key reinterpretation of the title track right here, right now. Give a listen, and let us know what you think in the comments… and anybody got any more Patty scoop to share?

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More from EW’s Music Mix:

New Basement Jaxx ft. Sam Sparro video, ‘Feelings Gone’: Watch it here

Stream three tracks from Rodrigo y Gabriela’s upcoming 11:11

Photo Credit: Traci Goudie