An Open Letter From SheWrites’ Judy Allison
Imagine being in a darkened quiet room full of people, sitting comfortably at a table with friends and family. You’re facing a colorfully lit stage and listening to a hushed voice tell the story of a broken heart. Or maybe the voice is strong and the story is of hope, that you’re not alone, or about how she wrote about moving on from an old relationship and she felt empowered. But then you laugh when that story became a funny song about being the designated driver, having to make multiple stops on the way home.
SheWrites and we listen. That’s how it went Saturday night as I hosted our 4th SheWrites Songwriter Showcase to kick off Women’s History Month. I am so very grateful for such a wonderful night because the spirit of the event felt like home. We laughed, we cried, we held our breath. At one point during the night I remember saying from the stage that it felt like one big “song hug”. Then after a few heartbreak stories, we warned the audience: “Don’t date a songwriter. You WILL become song material!” We really had a great time! Our audience was attentive and interactive, the best support you could ever ask for – a true listening experience similar to what I’ve experienced at The Bluebird Cafe in Nashville.
So, the lineup for SheWrites has evolved a bit from it’s inception in 2019. I think I’ve found an accidental balance this year when I had to replace our touring songwriter who had to cancel, with a local opener and then I split that time by adding a young performer to open the show! I think having a young performer who is new to the scene is a great way to show inclusiveness and opportunity to our aspiring songwriters. So I plan on keeping that format in the future!
I also plan to continue our pre-show vocal warm-ups! Special thanks to Karmessa who spent time with us in the green room, helping us learn relaxation techniques and the right way to warm up your voice for a show. Karmessa is a professional touring background singer for Ruben Studdard and also teaches voice at Maitland Conservatory.
I sure hope you’ll find us, give Purple19 a follow on IG and facebook and go show some love to your favorite woman songwriter today in honor of International Women’s Day.
Thanks for truly listening,