Monday, January 14, 2008

Musical Journey

Before I write a thoughtful post on my arts blog and give compelling reviews and You Tube clips of some showcases I've seen in the past several days, I decided to come here first and unload the emotion.

I can get caught up in a moment like anyone, particularly a musical one. Examples include when I saw Richard Ashcroft perform at the TLA in 2001...when I saw him again with Coldplay in 2006...when I saw Amos Lee at the Tin Angel...when I saw Crowded House at the Mann Center this past August.

But last night I sat in the room and watched several performances that were truly emotional and adventurous experiences. The Hot Club took us to 1930s France and back with their gypsy jazz music and sensational French singer. The Hot 8 Brass Band had the house clapping and rocking until 11:30 p.m. with their Second Line sound and musical journey to Marti Gras in NOLA. Danu - hands down the most intense performance of the evening - hails from Ireland and put us in a trance with their celtic fiddling. All I could think was - Imagine seeing them in a pub...with a Guinness. I felt like I was there. I wanted to bottle the energy.

One the one hand, little waves of nostalgia washed over me several times because I used to work for this agency and I desperately wanted to get up and talk to presenters and convey the level of excitement I felt. I also happened to look around and take in the incredible number of people in the room and the overall energy and couldn't place my finger on how I felt until much later in the evening. Then I remembered. I was part of something bigger. I experienced that there before, in 2004, when I played a big part in producing the showcase and for the first time in my young career felt extremely proud of where I worked, the people I worked for/with, the incredible talented artists I represented and the work I had done. Wrap all that up and it's an intense moment.

The intensity and energy swirled around inside me the other night. I was proud too - that I had come full circle to be there again. Amidst the little waves of nostalgia there was also confidence that someday I might pull off something this magnificent. The key to a successful showcase - and perhaps one's successful business - is the ability to build excitement and create connections and emotional experiences for people.

Here is video of Danu. Just know this does not capture the intensity I described above. Imagine this times 100. I hope you are as entranced as me.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Storm in Heaven

I heard an old tune today on the drive home and I sang along to the chorus and heard the words echo in my psyche. I used to sing these words in 1998 when I couldn't bare to talk to friends or even family about my parents separating...I didn't want anyone to see me in this fragile vulnerable state...they couldn't possibly understand. How could anyone else comprehend it when I couldn't? When one big thing was obviously the result of years of lots of little things - things that didn't even involve me - breaking apart?

The storm in heaven swirled tonight, 10 years ago. I almost fainted when they told me the news. I had to go work and afterwards I didn't care to go home. I wandered around the town of West Chester until midnight. It was a ghost town then and I fit in perfectly that night. When I arrived home, mom was sleeping, dad was still upset and John was in his room sobbing. I turned to go into my room and avoid everything but he was only 14 and something told me I had to put my own grief aside and comfort him. We'd all been close siblings but the next five years would bring us closer.

The storm would rage on most of that year until it finally died down to a drizzle...and drizzle it did on our lives for another four years. Somehow they persevered...somehow we persevered. Somehow we all learned from the stormy weather and came out on the other sunny side better people.

Ten years is a long time. A lot can change in ten years.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008


The flowers Vince gave me for my birthday have persevered 2 weeks. Amazing, right? I sustain them with water and trimming the bottoms off the stems. I pull out dead ones and rearrange. The other day a few carnations and lilies remained so I transferred them to these adorable juice bottles I salvaged. So pretty.