-Many of you may know me as The Music Lady, singer of kids songs, from preschools, libraries and child care conferences all over Michigan. You may not know that I also am an accomplished singer-songwriter. I wanted to give a little insight as to what lead me here and give you a chance to let me know what you think.
Often I refer to my singer-songwriter self as my "grown up" shows. Why? I generally chat with people who have young children in tow and I know that certain images may pop in your mind when you hear "adult music", Grown Up show was blurted out into the atmosphere somewhere, I heard it and latched right on and adopted it as my own.
How did I get here? Well, in 2004 I was beginning to tire of singing "Wheels on the Bus". It seemed that my original songs for kiddos were okay, but folks generally asked for songs that were more familiar to everyone. While I embraced singing songs that everyone could sing a long with, I found myself feeling I was not nurturing my musical soul. I was not challenging myself and I really felt I had much more to say. I searched out local musicians I knew and found myself at a performers showcase for a local group called Songwriters Anonymous. 10 performers took the stage, mostly as solo artists, singing two of their original songs. The audience was invited to sing along, all levels of songwriters were welcome and they mentioned they met once a month. I felt there was a place for me there. I showed up at the next meeting, full of uncertainty and a healthy dose of inferiority complex. I busted through my fears and swallowed every bit of information, inspiration and influence I could find and found a new world for myself.
I challenged my guitar skills, my performance skills, my storytelling skills, my melody skills. I wrote really bad songs and took them to peer critique groups, I attended workshops of legendary songwriters and soaked up every ounce of enlightenment I could find. Wonderful things started to happen. I found myself writing songs I really cared about. Then, with shaky hands and a big voice, I performed some of these songs. Sometimes they worked, sometimes they fell flat, so back to the workshops I would go and I would listen deeper and sing more intently and play with more dynamics. Then amazing things started to happen. I suddenly had a night of my own music with more songs than could I fit into a two hour set. I could choose the songs I shared. More songs kept coming.
I also realized that the songs in my Music Lady life suddenly had more musical interest, more style, more fun. I could improvise with the audience and write quick little ditties for the moment. My melodies became a little more interesting. my guitar confidence soared and I began to open up the songs everyone knew by heart and welcome the audience in. My passion had returned and I enjoyed " Wheels On the Bus" again.
My goal now is to continue this journey of constantly learning, creating and challenging myself. I'm seeking out more places for these new songs and this new passion of mine to come out and play. It is thrilling beyond compare to share a song I wrote about my own experience in life and have an audience respond to it. I know that the field of guitar-playing-big-voiced-singing-gals and fellas out there is getting pretty crowded. I believe there is a place for me. I've never had desire to be the next big anything, I just want to sing my songs and have people enjoy them. I also want to pay my bills. The Music Lady allows me to do that. I'm hoping I can find a few more avenues in which to let these songs come out more. I will.
Please feel free to let me know what you think about this other side of me. Samples of songs, videos and some recordings are coming. For now, I will tell you stories and keep writing songs. Thanks for listening.