Happy May (nearly June!) to All. And to those of you new to this list, Welcome!
It's been a busy time in the wild green growth of springtime, feeling myself stepping more deeply into my role as a facilitator, community leader, healer, teacher, artist, musician, mother, and of course, humble human. The Mother's Day concert with Yala Lati was incredible... If you're never had a 20 woman choir behind you, and an audience of 200 in front of you, all singing your song along with you, well... I highly recommend it! It feels amazing!
I also had such wonderful time at Song Village, a weekend retreat in the Santa Cruz mountains where I had the opportunity to facilitate song circles alongside MaMuse, Heather Houston, Laurence Cole, Debbie Nargi-Brown, and many other very talented folks. It was a weekend of community through song and singing... I mean, what could possible be better?
I was recently given an assignment to close my eyes, take some calming breaths, center myself, and say out loud "I have needs". Have you ever done this? At first I found it completely terrifying! Me? Have needs? No no no. Other people can have needs, especially those around me who I can help, but me having needs just feels like one more person who needs something, and it's just too much!
But I've been bravely working on it, and what I've been realizing, is that I do have many needs, and they are often conflicting. Say a friend asks for help on a day I am feeling particularly tired and overwhelmed, one of my needs is to be kind and supportive to others. Another of my needs is to rest, and get the laundry done. All of these are true, and none are right or wrong.
This perspective has been extremely helpful to me lately as I strive to streamline my work and focus. There is not room for everything, and there MUST be room for certain things. Here are the musical ones:
Amanda West + Friends OPEN MIC
Tuesday May 31st, 6-8pm @ The Ugly Mug in Soquel
My private teaching is flourishing and I love it. I'm hosting a celebratory open mic for my students on Tuesday May 31st, and we're inviting the community to come listen, and bring your own song to share! It's free and open to all. Please join us! More details below or join the facebook event.
CIRCLE SONG with Amanda West + Debbie Nargi-Brown
Saturday June 12th, 7-9pm @ The Center for Healing in Felton
Debbie & I connected at Song Village. She is a greatly respected musician, teacher and community leader in Santa Cruz and I'm a little bit in awe that she invited me to co-lead a community song circle with her! But here we are. Songs will be taught call & response style, and the evening is open to all. Join us for heart-opening, spirit-lifting, song healing! More details below or join the facebook event.
NEW ALBUM in the works!
If you missed the news, we've decided not to tour this summer. Instead, we're putting that time and energy into a collection of new recordings (!!!) I feel like some of my best songs are yet unheard, and I can't wait to birth them into the world to share. Initially we plan to release them as acoustic, stripped-down versions, then slowly release the fully-produced versions as they are finished. Assuming we can keep to the current schedule, recording will be finished by the end of July, leaving a few months for production, and a new album out by the end of the year! Your encouragement and support is deeply appreciated! Send me an email, write me on facebook, I want to hear from you!
~ My music in even more places online
Meanwhile, you can stream/download all my albums here:
Wow! You made it to the bottom of the email.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for staying with me.
I hope to see you/hear from you/sing with you soon!
sending you love and light and song,