Category Archives: record collection

Dreams, Revisited

Since I was sixteen, my mantra has been “no regrets”. In other words, when I near the end of my life I want to be able to say that I have no regrets for the way I lived. When I was 16 a friend of mine died in a mountain climbing accident. At the time I had recently given birth to my first son. I was still in high school. That was my first wake up call. Life is short! I HAD to live it to it’s fullest! What if I died tomorrow?

I had a few years of floundering around, married the father of my son, joined the military, had a couple more sons, and started my first art business. Not long after my divorce from the father of my sons, I discovered that I was in love with my best friend. We moved in together and married 1 1/2 years later. We had a lovely little family, my new husband was content to help me raise my boys since I could no longer have babies. Basically, I have lived and continue to live my happily ever after. Fast forward 15 years, my youngest son has moved out of the house and we now have an EMPTY nest! When I was young I sacrificed some of my dreams in order to be the best mom I could be. Always with the thought that we would have an empty nest around the time I was 42, leaving plenty of life left to live out those long forgotten dreams.

For a few months, I have floundered around, yet again. Wondering what was next? I still love being an artist and have many plans and goals yet to achieve. Regrets? I still have none. My life isn’t over YET, after all. I’ve been revisiting some of the dreams I had way back when I was fifteen years old, before I became a young mother. One of them was to be a singer/performer/actress. It just so happens that I am married to not only my best friend, but a highly talented musician. We had tried to work together on a music project back at the beginning of our relationship. Before my husband earned his bachelors of music, before he had the patience and knowledge to help me find my voice. We had one gig back then. I SUCKED! I was so nervous, my voice never really came out, it just wavered and trembled and I was so embarrassed that I gave up on the dream. I went back to my art, my comfort zone.

Back to the future and 2008. April 2008 to be exact. My dad passed away unexpectedly and my brother (who is also a professional musician), husband and I decided we would play a couple of my dad’s favorite songs at his memorial services. The idea was reborn then. A folk trio playing all the old folk music my brother and I grew up listening to in my dad’s record room. Yes, my dad had a record ROOM. He had a record collection of over 40,000 records(which I now have). Yet another reason why my brother and I always loved music. We used to sing songs together as kids and even made it on the radio once! On our dad’s Oldies radio show. 🙂

When dad died, it seemed perfect that we would put together an act in remembrance of him. So, for the last 4 1/2 years we’ve done nothing but talk about it. We always sing songs around the campfire when we take our yearly “memorial dad” camping trip.

This year, finally, now that we have so much extra time on our hands, Aaron and I started practicing folk songs together. We told my brother about it and now we are working on putting our folk trio together. We spent 4 evenings in July practicing before, during and after our yearly camping trip. We have practiced since then separately, and together (via recordings and email).

This Thursday is the moment we’ve been practicing for! It’s our first gig! We live 3 hours away from my brother, but we will be driving down to play and also, spend some time in his recording studio making demos of the music we have down so far. If you happen to be in or around Las Cruces, NM this Thursday, stop by Uno’s between 6:30 – 9:30pm and have a listen! I promise my confidence in my singing has improved. I am SURE it will be a good show this time around! I promise to share some photos and possibly video when I get home! 🙂

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Oh well…..Life goes on

As my dad used to say. Life is getting back to normal a little more everyday. Tonight we have an artist’s meeting at the new studio. This will be my first full week back at work. We’ll see if I make it thru the whole week. Last week we took off Thursday-Saturday to get the house clean and put my dad’s record collection away in one of the bedrooms.

Not sure if I’ve written about my dad’s record collection before. My dad was nuts about music. When I say nuts, I mean he had OCD. He collected records, I’m talking vinyl here, albums and 45s, starting when he was around 16. He ended up with a collection of around 40,000 records! It’s difficult to picture that many records, so let me help with the visualization. His record collection takes up one FULL bedroom! That is records all around the room floor to ceiling! Now, many people have record collections, but not only did he collect them, he organized them! They are all cataloged extensively. The 45s are cataloged chronologically by the week they hit the Billboard top 100 and also by artist alphabetically. The albums are cataloged in alphabetical order by artist. He had the top 100 singles from 1943 thru the early 1990s!

Some of my best memories as a kid were the times I spent with my dad listening to music. It’s no wonder I married a musician! Dad always had a record room. When I was younger it was just a closet or half a room, but as I got older, they took up more and more space. I remember weekends spent combing yard sales, Goodwill and anywhere else he could find records for a quarter or less. My brother and I would always whine because it was so boring! He always had a list in his wallet of the records he was looking for to fill out the collection. Every week when he received his newest Billboard magazine he would show me which songs had gone up the charts, which had fallen, and which were new to the charts. That was always my favorite part because he would then play any new records for me and we would talk about what we liked or didn’t like. He loved to make me mix tapes of my favorites and I would play them on my cassette player over and over. If there was a record I liked, he would buy it for me and make a tape. I rarely got to keep the record myself, unless he had a double of it!

Now, all those records are in my house and I look forward to playing them soon. We still need to put up shelves so they can be accessed and set up our record player so they can be played. I know he will be there beside me, listening to music, just like the old days.