In 2015 I played 90+ shows. In the Midwest, on the west coast, in the south. This is nothing compared to the more seasoned full time musicians, non-stop touring, living in their vans & buses, 300+ shows a year. However for me, doing my own booking and promoting and holding down rent and some yoga teaching in Duluth at the time — it was quite a lot. I have so many great memories (and alas, some not so great!) and especially love the travel aspect and connecting with new and old friends. This country is incredible and huge and its inhabitants vast and varied.
2016 has looked a lot different. In December of last year, I got an inkling in my head to teach yoga in Minneapolis. What was just a daydream has turned into me becoming the owner of a small yoga studio in south Minneapolis, my BABY, Imbue Yoga Studio. It is truly my happy place. It has been a boon in a time of great transition, sorrow, and transformation as well as starting to build community for the neighborhood and beyond. My vision is to “imbue your life with well being, energy & compassion.” I want everyone who steps into this space to feel calm and peaceful upon entering and especially upon leaving. Planting roots in a new city and building a business has challenged me to look at things in my music life. I will still be able to tour and travel as I have 7 other wonderful teachers to take the reigns when I’m gone. Though I will need to be much more strategic about my touring and travels.
This is where the “quality over quantity” comes in. I want to play gigs that feed the soul, to people who really want to be there. Gone are the days of playing for three hours in the back of the restaurant or bar … The next four gigs I have this summer are AWESOME.
It’s not that I don’t see the value in providing background music for diners and drinkers. And I’ve met amazing people doing that, and sold albums, and got paid in dinners and drinks and tips. And I always love the venue owners and we get along famously. There is just such an outpouring of energy to be singing for 3-4 hours, though. Like if you read a word over and over and over it starts to become gibberish? That’s similar – the exhaustion kicks in, the songs lose their meaning. I don’t mean to sound like a prissy baby or something as there are people that LOVE these long gigs, finger pickers or bluegrass people. My songs are pretty heart wrenching and lyrical though, so I suck dry my OWN energy when I’m singing for 3 hours! Not to mention the audience! HA
I’m trying to determine how best to spend my energy. Trying to determine what GIVES me energy. Trying to determine what inspires other people and gives THEM energy. And I think short and sweet can pack a punch. 45-60 min sets, give it your best shot, give it all you’ve got, blow it out yr ass, blow off the rooftop or at least try and blow some minds.
Hope to see you at a show. It will be power packed. New band line up, new songs, new new sparkly and new.