Exploring the Depths

Hey Friends,

 We’ve been thinking of you and hoping you are ebbing into the shorter, cooler days with some reverence for “slowing down” and getting into autumn mode!   We caught the general population up with our blog we released last week.  Funny, as I was writing the blog last week I was very happy that all of you knew the inside scoop because that general blog was a doozey and many details were left out (like the pile of ladies in the van at the winery in California! LOL!)

Mo did a great job keeping you up to snuff on that tour and I wanted to go into a bit more detail about the lake at Alturas and my inner experience with this conference coming up in October this year.

We were moving and a grooving in July and also August, but we had a chance in August to just ‘STOP’ for a little while.  It was amazing!  Never in our musical career have we stayed in a campground for over a week solid!  It was unheard of and something we definitely want to repeat! 

 The cool part is that we had gigs all around the vicinity in the Stanley/Sun Valley region, so it was a “working vacation” in some senses.  After our crazy 8 shows a week, we landed at a serene campground and we parked our chair by the lake.

 I was empty, out of gas, content but tired.  I sat there. No book, no phone, nothing but the water lapping on the shore and a relatively quiet campground.  My mind first drifted to a revisit of what we have done this summer, last week, and then it got “macro” with, “what are we doing in general with our music…or lives?”   

I felt ever so grateful to be sitting by the lake, and even though the air quality was poor, full of smoke because of all the fires in the region, I felt truly blessed to be in company with Mo, Juno, and this still body of water.  Water has always been so healing for me.  Mo and I are both water signs, perhaps that’s why we blend pretty easily…..infact, Juno is too! (Just made that connection…I swear she has some “fire” in her though ha ha!!!)  Juno absolutely LOVES the water (as many of you witnessed from the face book video). 

 I broke my paddle board out of its box that trip. It had been in that damn box for over 4 months!  “How ridiculous”, I thought, “not breaking this out sooner”.  But in all honesty…when did we have time?

 I brought my bicycle too! Her name is Xena! (I hadn’t been on it all summer either!)  So now was the time!  I paddled out to the middle of the lake.  It was still, like a mirror.  No wind.  I laid down and went into a deep dreamlike meditation. 

 Something about those still, quiet moments…something I can’t place my finger on or put into exact words came over me.  I felt changed forever!  As I laid there looking up at the mountains I closed my eyes and imagined the water beneath me; so deep and so cleansing. With each deep breathe, I could feel the fullness of the lake, and an  energetic shift that overwhelmed me with gratitude. 

 All that I was ever miserable about was “make-believe”.  It was a story I told myself and I could STOP telling myself a miserable story at ANY TIME!  It was as if my Spirit guides were talking to me.  It was quite incredible.  

 No one’s life is ever what it seems on the surface.  Like that lake, we all go deep.  We all have inner wounds that need healing.  We all look one way on the surface but we have a depth that sometimes even we don’t understand. 

I laid there for an hour.  I drifted.  I stopped.  I hit the refresh button as this beautiful place filled my soul and gave back to me the depth that I know I indeed possess and I am here to help others remember they have too!  It was so awesome!  I felt like I dropped 50 pounds of emotional wreckage and the water just washed it away.  I touched the center of my soul, so to speak, and I liked who was there!  In fact, I loved it!  AND, I let myself love it!   

How often do we get uncluttered enough to simply acknowledge ourselves IN our being-ness?  Right?  We are all humans walking a path. We all have been dealt some cards (good and not-so-good).  All we have to do is love ourselves and each-other.  It’s that simple, but that gets clouded over. 

 The lake washed this away for me…and THEN!!!

We played at Redfish lake a day or so later.  Normally when we go to the mountains, the altitude is something of a challenge. The Red Fish gig has a “status” tied to it. We are the ONLY all female band to play it all season (so sad but true) and it can be a bit of mind game to feel worthy of landing this gig due to the amount of folks who wish to play it and how few dates are available. So we consider ourselves lucky!

 And this year, the parking angel opened a spot, friends helped us easily unload or equipment, and when my mouth opened I felt my voice resonate from the depths of my Soul.  I could have held a note for 10 minutes it felt like!!!  I was blown away!  It was as if I took the lake with me and was unafraid to go deep!  Unafraid to sing a song which allowed people to cry and feel! It felt a bit freeing, to see folks emote freely, and know that this truly is part of my/our calling.  It’s what I’m here to do!  It’s what you’re here to experience! What a gift!

I may have felt this in my past on some level…but I truly got it this time!  And I feel our shows have been different ever since then.  I’ve been wanting to feel deserved, to be “worthy of being on stage” etc.  And for the most part I’ve been really feeling it.  I don’t ever take this gift of playing music for granted.  But to have my heart SO OPEN and so calm and so intuitive…holy cow it was awesome!  And surely if I can keep my cup filled, I can help others fill their cups too! It’s simply magical! 

 And isn’t life funny how it gives you a chance to exercise what you’ve learned and what you “think” you know.  Next month we’ll be playing a showcase at the Northwest Booking Conference in Eugene, Oregon.  This conference hosts many musicians, dancers, comedy acts, etc. and the talent buyers come to select the acts for the coming year’s line up. 

 It’s basically…a big freaking deal.  So keep your fingers crossed!

 We were selected to showcase (another big deal and quite an accomplishment in its own right) which means we have 12 minutes to perform our “magic” to the talent buyers and also in front of our peers.  Hopefully, many will love what they hear from us and wish to book us at larger (more lucrative) venues, like theaters, festivals, and concert series all over the Northwest. 

 We have exactly 12 minutes!  Not a second more!  They will pull the plug on you if you go over.  Mind you, most of our songs run 4-5 minutes long! 

 So, yesterday Mo and I sat down with a formula for the showcase because I was getting nervous that we haven’t yet prepared for it and it’s coming up Oct. 8-11th. 

 We decided to do a montage (truncated version of songs) 4 classic, active, fun songs, so this means we are taking the best out of some songs like; Summertime, Can’t You See, The Letter, Folsom Prison to show our diverse covers, then plan to have some good old fun and create a BIG sound with the 2 of us, ending with “Only the Lucky” and “Thankful.”

 People often put us in the ballad box, or country.  Nothing wrong with that box, but it’s nice to be versatile too.  So, if all of you can say a little prayer for us the 2nd week of Oct. while we are at the conference…we would be so grateful. 

 These conferences are usually something I dread, but it really comes down to taking this opportunity to fully believe in ourselves.  Music constantly gives us a chance to step out and “in” to ourselves.  It can be quite a vulnerable place. I will draw from my meditation from lake Alturas and also from all of you who so generously support us and believe in our music!  Having you behind us brings so much more confidence to the stage!  We will keep you posted and let you know how it goes. 

 Meanwhile, I hope you all are adjusting to the Earth shifting on it’s axis and finding beauty in the changing of the leaves! 

 

Be well! 

 Lake Alturas 2018 - Juno is quite the proud “surf dog”.

Lake Alturas 2018 - Juno is quite the proud “surf dog”.

 

Niccole