"Sing, Sing a Song, Sing out Loud, Sing Out Strong!"

Photo by Jesse Epstein


Last night, Jess and I watched a documentary on Janis Joplin. I'm a very big fan of hers. Jess saw her in the late 60s in Golden Gate Park while high on acid. Yes, it is probably one of the reasons I married him!

One of the things most people don't know about me is that I am a singer. I started taking voice lessons when I was thirteen and stopped when I was 40. In high school, I was in choir, and later on in NYC, I did some open mic.  I also did a few musical revues with a theater group in Jersey City.

I've sang mostly in my parents house on Spruce Ave. or various apartments in New York City. You ask why? Well, my music has always been something I knew I did well. And with all the fear I used to have in my life, my music was my comfort. As a kid, I sang to my parents records: Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Judy Garland. My sister had a 5th Dimension album that became a favorite. Oh yes, Karen Carpenter's "Rainy Days and Mondays Gets Me Down."

Musical theater was also an influence. Loved singing to Pippin and a Chorus Line. Grease was a favorite. My mother introduced me to movie musicals at an early age, "Singing in the Rain" being my favorite.  Fred and Ginger films had the best songs! I love Judy Garland who was a true artist. I can say the same about Sinatra. How I wished to live in that era and be a movie musical star.

As I grew into a teenager, my tastes changed and I grew into my voice. Carole King, Bonnie Raitt, Fleetwood Mac, Chrissy Hynde, Blondie, Pat Benatar, Joan Jett, The GoGo's and of course Madonna!! Then came Annie Lennox, KD Lang, Tracy Chapman, and Whitney Houston. I always stuck to my roots with Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. I still love all these singers, but my tastes lately lean toward Jennifer Hudson, Beyounce and Pink!! PINK!!!!! and more PINK!!!

I have a new goal and that is to sing again in a band. My reasons for this goal is that I would like to feel comfortable singing in public. The other reason is that I want to sing with my friend Dave on stage. He is a blues singer and I would love to surprise him get up on stage and sing with him.

Janice Joplin said something about singing  that I really loved.  She said that she loved singing because you mix all these emotions you have all together and they come out in the singing.  It's so true and she was such an intense singer and performer. She was a very lonely person and I was a very lonely kid.

Singing was and is my safe place. That is why I think I have trouble singing in public. It's like I am letting the audience into the private safe part of my soul. It always feels too revealing. I find this ironic, because as my husband says, what he loves about me is that I am so real with people. That is true and I don't know any other way to be.

I do this blog and I am authentic. Some days I wonder: do I have to be so open? Of course I do, because I really don't feel like I have anything to hide. No, I don't blurt out to people that I am bipolar, especially in Costa Rica. That's mostly for Myah's sake right now.

There are definitely things to peel away to get myself back up on stage. That's why I am grateful for therapy. There is a safe place for me to confront why I am afraid to reveal myself in front of an audience.  I do have two fans: my husband and Myah, who told me she loved my voice! Like Myah, I loved my mother's voice.

Well, Love and Peace to You All!