I’ve never been shy about taking the stage. I remember being in third grade and singing the solo in the Hanukkah song in an elementary school holiday concert. As I got older, I sang with choirs, played my clarinet in band, even tooled around on a bass guitar in jazz band. I had a few lines as a lovely lady in Les Mis and was a Bali Ha’i dancer in South Pacific. But since I didn’t take up acoustic guitar until after I’d graduated from college, I never had a chance to play in public – until this weekend.
I headed back to my hometown in NH for the weekend to play at the local (read: only) coffeeshop’s open mic night. The shop itself is related to my theatrical past – it’s housed in the old train station, which was actually the hardware store when I was growing up. Katie and I used to go there about twice a week (or day) to buy paint for flats and signs and furniture. In the audience were old friends, my middle school shop teacher, the town librarians, etc. So much hometown love.
And SO MUCH FUN. I played two songs – cut out the middle one because the program was running a little long. First my dad and I sang “Jolene” by Dolly Parton – I was inspired by a first date I went on a few weeks ago where I heard a woman kill it. Thanks for taking me to that bar, Ryan! And then I sang and played “You and I” by Lady Gaga alone – an anthem to my “cool New Hampshire guy.”
After all that time of planning, and all that hype, it was so much easier than I expected. And so much more exhilarating. I added this to my five year plan because it seemed like something good to try “before I got too old” but actually, it struck a serious chord (teehee) in my heart. I think I’m going to have to look at going bigger… maybe even seeing if there are any bands that need guitarists…?
Lesson learned: always push yourself and try new things – it might not only make you tick, but also inspire some further desire!
So much love to my mom and sis for cheering me on, bro-in-law Wes for also playing for the first time, cousin Sophie and uncle Andy for rocking it, dad for always playing by my side, and Ashley, Zak, and Rachael for coming to cheer me on.
Now, onward to the rest of the fun adventures on my list, and all those I haven’t even thought to write down!