Pictures and thoughts from a Memphis Musician's Wife

Archive for June, 2013

Living a Dream: My Beale Street

It’s funny. Living in Memphis, growing up around the outer parts of the area, I never really knew about the Beale Street Legacy. As many times as I went to Beale Street when I was younger, I never really stopped and listened to the live music. I was so absorbed in the people, my friends, and the “club” that I failed to see the real Beale Street. After I moved back to Memphis, I began dating and married an amazing musician. He showed me a side of music I had never seen before. Just listening to the Blues and Soul that came out of the clubs he was playing in was life changing. I had to stay. Some people see Beale as a burden and a horrible place. I see it as a second home with an extended family. Our little girl has pretty much grown up there, singing on the various stages, playing drums, and playing a little trumpet (like her old friend Rudy Williams and her daddy). The musicians that play there every single day sometimes get jaded to the honor that they have because they are blessed too play there every day. People come to Beale Street with dreams of playing on a stage on Beale, playing that Southern Blues. My husband does it every day, in all different clubs on the street (there are only about 3 or 4 venues he has not played in on the street). I have been in the presence of great artists and musicians as if they were family. I get to live a dream. It may not be everyone’s dream, and many people do not understand my desire to just be a supporter, but it is my dream. If you ever come to Beale Street, look for what I see in Beale. Look for the real music, not just the loud noise. Look for the young musicians who are really standing out, the ones you will see all over the world in the future. Support them. Let their music support you. That is their gift to you. Don’t go to Beale just too get drunk or party. Let the music move you. Then, you will see my Beale Street.

The Road

The Road can be a hard thing to deal with. Being away from your husband for any extended length of time can be difficult, but it is even harder when you work together and spend pretty much all of your time together.

When I started dating Jeremy, he performed every day. I can hardly remember one off day (they are still few and far between). I’d just moved back home, leaving a bad situation to start all over again. We spent every moment we had together. I learned quickly how to set his equipment up, not that it was very hard (he had a 63 key keyboard then). As I attended more and more of his gigs, I kind of took on the role of band mom. I would play the role of waitress, merch sales lady, sound tech, roadie, and so much more. I did this everywhere I went with Jeremy, and with every band, as he played with several. We didn’t have a car, so we were limited to riding on the bus with his equipment, sometimes having to walk home if we could not get a ride or have money for a cab home. Fortunately, we lived only 2 miles from Beale Street. This went on for about two years, with Jeremy eventually graduating to an 88 key keyboard. Needless to say, our bond became very tight. We were best friends, marriage partners, business partners, and parents. We still are.

Things changed, though. We were blessed with a vehicle, which opened us up to being able to play with different and better bands. They travel. They actually guarantee a pay (lol). Jeremy was blessed with much better equipment, which of course is heavier and more difficult to move. So, I am still there (as long as “Mommy” duty doesn’t require me to be away). It feels so awkward when I am not there. He has gone on the road, for the second time (only a two day trip), with a band that I very actively assist when I am around them. However, I was not invited on either of their road trips, which is understandable. (I don’t want anyone too take this as me being hurt or mad or anything about me not going on the road with them.) Some people like to tell me to get a life, that my life should not revolve around my husband and my family. Well, what else should it consist of? My husband is a performer. I am a business manager and promotions and marketing specialist. We work together. Our finances are one. Our business is one. Our lives are one. That’s just us. So, when we are apart, it is like a piece of me is missing. I don’t hear music the same when I don’t hear him. The road is lonely for both of us. True enough, I get time to myself and to take care of business I probably would not get done when he is here. I get to go to picnics with old friends and spend some time with family I don’t always get to see. I like it, but it is hard and makes me feel like I am living a dream when he is here. I am glad I get to go on the next road trip with him, but I won’t be happy when the time comes for him to be gone for long periods of time. I just hope that by then we can actually travel together as a family. Image

Video

The Bones

This is Suavo J. feat. Mr. 88 and the Bones performing “Ain’t No Sunshine” and Cry Me a River. They are the creation of Suavo and my husband, Jeremy “Mr. 88” Powell, and I am proud to say that I am the manager of their band. Suavo and Mr. 88 are the voices of the band, and the Bones (Moe and Nick) do just what the bones of your body do, hold the songs together. They are so energetic and fun to watch. There is just something special about them, and I can’t wait to see what happens when people really start to see these guys. You can check out videos at http://youtube.com/suavojand88bones or follow them at http://facebook.com/suavojftmr88andthebones or http://suavojand88bones.webs.com . Think of them as the Booker T. and the MGs of today!

Our little musician

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Now Tytianna likes to sing!!!

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