Tag Archives: Emmylou Harris

The similarities between music and writing.

4 Oct

Last night, my friend Olive and I went to see a band called First Aid Kit perform at the Orange Peel, a popular, but small live music venue in downtown Asheville. First Aid Kit is “a Swedish folk duo composed of sisters Johanna and Klara Söderberg, whose close vocal harmonies and woodsy, folk-influenced songwriting take influence from the likes of Fleet Foxes and Joanna Newsom.”

I first recognized the connection between music and writing when First Aid Kit played their song, “Emmylou.” Take a look at the chorus of the song:

I’ll be your Emmylou and I’ll be your June
If you’ll be my Gram and my Johnny too
No, I’m not asking much of you
Just sing little darling, sing with me

Even though this song specifically refers to singing, I feel like it can apply to writing as well. The great thing about singing (and writing) is that even though it can be a one-person job, the pure joy in it is found when it’s shared with others. Yes, the majority of the time when I write, I write for me. I used to sing as well, and when I did so, it was mainly due to the fact that it made me happy. However, how lonely would writing be (and singing for that matter) if we weren’t able to touch people with our words and music? In my opinion, it wouldn’t be nearly as rewarding. Yes, it is an incredible feeling when I’m able to write out a specific memory and know that simply writing it out has brought me a sense of comfort that wasn’t there before. However, I don’t think I would be able to push through my writing ruts and my bad writing days if it weren’t for the people who were supporting me and encouraging me to keep on writing. I feel like it’s very similar in terms of singing. After all, when you go to concerts, you always hear the musicians constantly thanking their listeners for their love and support. I have no doubt that in their minds, they wouldn’t have been able to push through the hard days of songwriting without the support and love from their fans.

Though there were so many years that I wrote simply for me and me alone, that focus has definitely shifted over the last year. Even though I still do write for myself due to the fact that it’s incredibly therapeutic, I also write in order to impact others with my words. I write to share my story. However, I share my story because I want it to help others: others with CP, others who want a window into what CP is like (like the parents and friends of kids with CP), others who don’t know much about CP but have a desire to learn. Without the presence of those “others” wanting and needing me to keep sharing my story, writing about my life would be so much harder. Therefore, it is because of the support and encouragement from all of you that I am able to sit down at my computer every day and share my story, though some days it seems to come together very slowly. Thankfully, there’s no time frame for my writing. The only required constant is writing something, anything every day.

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Share Your Passion: Alison Krauss and Union Station.

28 Apr

Tonight, in approximately 4 hours, I’ll be with my mom in Columbia about to hear Alison Krauss and Union Station perform live! As I’ve said in previous posts, my parents listened to Alison Krauss and Union Station a lot as I was growing up (as well as Shawn Colvin and Emmylou Harris), so her music has a strong connection to my childhood. I’ve wanted to hear Alison Krauss perform live for a long time, and I’m really glad that I’m finally getting the opportunity.

I’ve always been drawn to bluegrass. Since I’ve lived in the mountains since August, I’ve gotten an even broader view of “mountain music.” However, for me, bluegrass will always be its defining feature for me. In general, I love music. I think Alison’s voice is what draws me most to her music though. It’s simple, but at the same time, it’s so deeply beautiful (at least that is my opinion of it).

I can’t wait to experience her music live. I talked to a friend a few months back who’s seen her live, and she said that the concert was simply magical. However, I’d expect no less from Alison Krauss. I was watching an interview she had with PBS last December, and I never realized that entered the music scene at such an early age. She recorded for the first time when she was 14! That blows my mind, but at the same time, I’m not all that surprised.

She has a true gift for music. Anyone can see that. And whether you’re a gifted musician or a gifted writer, you’ve got to share your passion. It took me a long time to understand that concept. However, when I realized how much I wanted to share my own story, I guess the concept was easier to grasp. In terms of being an artist or a writer, it’s not that we want to make money (though that is definitely important when you’re trying to make a living). It’s the fact that we express ourselves through our music or words. It’s what gives us meaning in our lives. And when you’ve got the need the express that passion or dream with others, you find a way to do it.