Olivia Newton-John — the movie star (“Grease”) and singer (“I Honestly Love You”) — will take the stage at the Historic Everett Theatre on Thursday to present songs from a new album.
Yes, right here in Everett.
With her will be Amy Sky and Beth Nielsen Chapman — friends, fellow musicians and album collaborators.
“LIV ON” is their album, the result of a project by the trio to compose songs that offer hope, comfort and healing to people who are grieving, gravely ill or enduring trauma.
The singers all have been through their shares of loss and life challenges, so the music flows from experience and from the heart, said Newton-John, in a phone interview earlier this week.
One of the songs on the album is “Stone in My Pocket.”
“When you first go through grief, it’s like dragging a brick around in your pocket,” Newton-John said. “And sometimes it feels like a boulder. Then later it might feel like a pebble. It’s always there, but you can cope.”
The album initially was inspired by the death of her sister three years ago, said Newton-John, now 68. Shortly after she began writing a song about the loss as a way to heal.
She called up Amy Sky to help her finish the song. Sky, who had just lost her mother, agreed with Newton-John that very little music is out there for grieving people. They got well-known songwriter Beth Nielsen Chapman involved and formed the trio. Chapman, who has written for Faith Hill is known for her song “Sand and Water,” which she wrote after her first husband died.
The women recently returned from a well-received tour that took them to England, Ireland and Scotland, where they performed in London, Dublin and Glasgow.
During many of their concerts, the trio listened to audience members talk about loss and grief.
“I think the album gives people permission to cry,” Newton-John said. “It’s a stress reliever and it’s uplifting.”
It’s been good for the trio, too, she said.
“We’ve really been loving the album tour,” Newton-John said.
In Everett, Chapman, Sky and Newton-John — accompanied by guitar, piano and bass — primarily will perform songs from the new album, along with a few of each other’s favorite best-known songs.
“Please do not come expecting a greatest hits show. When I do my solo show, I have fun singing them all,” Newton-John said. “It’s just that we have a purpose with this concert.”
The Australian singer is one of the world’s best-selling musical artists of all time, and “Grease” (1978) is one of the most successful soundtracks of all time.
Born into an intellectual family, Newton-John had to convince her parents that music was right for her.
“The highest praise I ever received from my professor father was ‘Well done,’” she said, “but they knew music was my priority.”
She started out singing tunes such as Bob Dylan’s “If Not For You,” folk songs (“Banks of the Ohio”), got into country music (“Let Me Be There”) and delivered lots of pop hits.
While her fun song “Physical” was listed in 2010 as the “sexiest song of all time” by Billboard Magazine, Newton-John has a deeply serious side. In recent decades, she has spent lots of time on issues including animals rights, the environment and breast cancer awareness.
Her other feature film credits include “Xanadu” and “A Few Best Men.” In 2010, she appeared as herself in two episodes of the hit series, “Glee,” when she sang “Physical” with the show’s star, Jane Lynch.
The seemingly timeless appeal of Olivia Newton-John is sure to be evident when she sings on Thursday.
If you go
Olivia Newton-John, Amy Sky and Beth Nielsen Chapman will appear in concert promoting their new album (www.livonmusic.com) at 8 p.m. Feb. 16 at the Historic Everett Theatre, 2911 Colby Ave. For tickets, priced at $50 to $65, call the box office at 425-258-6766 or go to www.historiceveretttheatre.org.