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Last weekend I was hit by a bird. Wallis Bird.

relationships, online dating, raising a teenager, over 50, positive ageing

Live music rocks

I live in a small country town in regional Australia, with a huge number of artists and creative folk in its make up. Because we’re near Byron Bay, the most Easterly point of the mainland, a mecca for tourists and Australians alike, we have a lot of festivals all year round.

I’m talking music festivals, food festivals, arts and crafts, healing and esoteric, dance, yoga, renewable energy, building design, crystals, antiques, comedy, more food, and of course more music .

As a performer, I’m lucky enough to often get gigs at some of them, which usually means an ‘Access All Areas’ full pass, plus privileges like parking facilities for costume drop offs, and of course a fee.

I’m a blessed and grateful woman.

lanyards from festivals and music gigs in Australia

Sample of ridiculous lanyard collection #gratitude #over50smusiclover @boneAndsilver

So I’ve seen a lot of music, a lot of performance, a lot of shows. I’ve been doing this work in this area for 20 years this year (although I won’t be getting a pension, nor any large Superannuation payout that’s for sure).

I’ve shared backstage space with a lot of musicians, various writers and politicians, a few actors and stand up comedians, a number of other performing artists, and quite a few egos the size of a small marquee.

I’ve been around; I’ve seen a lot of artists ‘do their thing’. I’ve seen old timers like Buddy Guy or Barry White just chillin’ back on a chair, doing the minimal, because that’s all we need.

I’ve seen passionate politicians like Gough Whitlam or Julia Gillard still inspiring audiences to strive for a fairer society.

And I’ve seen actors, poets, singers, and even dancers move patrons to tears, over and over again.

I’m one of those. I LOVE the arts, and one of my top favourite places in the world to be is not an exotic beach, nor ancient monument or landscape, but rather the darkened theatre in that moment before the curtain rises or the first note of the song rings out.

My small country town hosts a music festival every year- this year was the 10th. The Director handpicks both known and unknown acts from around the world, some of whom return every year- the loyalty and friendliness is one of the festival’s winning vibes.

This year, he brought us Wallis Bird.

Do yourself a favour: if she tours near you, go see her. If she tours near a family member or distant relative, go stay with them, and buy them a ticket too. If she’s performing in a country you’ve always wanted to visit, now’s the time to book that plane flight, and cross it off your bucket list.

She’s extraordinary.

She’s Irish, lives in Europe, and lost 4 fingers in a mowing accident so plays guitar upside down. She rocks out!

Wallis Bird performing in Australia

The extraordinary Irish solo musician Wallis Bird #livemusic #femalemusician @wallisbird @amandapalmer

A vivid, visceral, and utterly heart-centred artist, passionately expressing what they were put on this planet to do.

When was the last time you went and saw some good live music? Got sweaty and jostled with a dancing crowd, or sat peacefully with eyes closed listening to a string quartet? Whatever your preferred style, make a date to check out a good live musician this month, and bathe in the raw, real power of musical prowess. And who cares if you’re over 40 or 50? Show the young folk that good music can always be appreciated.

I’d especially recommend Wallis Bird, but you know that already, and here’s the standing ovation she drew from my hometown crowd:

 

In gratitude for the music, G

 

29 Comments

  1. Gosh I didn’t realise you were near Byron! I was in Brunswick Heads a couple weeks ago, stunning place 😍 popped by Byron too. Must go back for longer.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Wow thank you!! Gabrielle, I didn’t realize that you’re a musician. How awesome is that? Appreciate the creativity and enthusiasm and joy you’re sharing here! ❀ Love and blessings, Debbie

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I am going to check out her music! Amazing that she can play with four fingers missing. And I’m with you–I love the moment in a darkened theater just before the curtain rises. Pure Heaven:). Sounds like the place you live is a little slice of heaven also.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I do live in Paradise; I always joke that someone has to, so it may as well be me.

      Apparently they sewed the fingers back on, but they don’t function fully, so she strums that guitar hard with that hand, and breaks strings every few songs! She was extraordinary, and deserves as much success as she can handle

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow, while this is soooo awesome and I will definitely have to check more of her music (I love to discover new music), I have learned that we have quite a bit in common. I share your words and feel as if you are spoken from my heart. I somehow feel even more connected to you and once again it warms my heart to have run across you. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks for the recommendation. I have passed it on to my other half. She loves music and particularly women performers. She is playing Wallis Bird right now on her computer, which is directly opposite mine on the table. As I look up I can see she is becoming a fan right before my eyes. Song finishes, “Wow” is the comment

    ps noticing my own gyrations as the tempo picks up!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I went to my first ever music festival in May, it was a 4 day rock festival and it was awesome!!
    I am going to see my teenage idol Suzi Quatro in January and I am beyond excited!

    Liked by 1 person

      • hahahaha, I never thought about the leather but funny… I have a true story for you!!
        I was incredibly excited when I moved to America because I was going to be on the same soil as my idol, imagine my surprise and my absolute horror when NOBODY here in America knew who the hell she was… I was like how can you NOT know SUZI , she is the QUEEN of ROCK just like Elvis is the king of pop. The only way anyone knew who I was talking about was, if I said you know “Leather Tuscadero in happy days, Fonzies girlfriend, then they were like oh yeah, I didn’t know she sang :O
        I have met one American who knew here for the incredible artist she is and that is Mon Capitaine

        Liked by 1 person

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