A few years ago I started interviewing fellow writers. This process was inspiring and enlightening.
As a writer, teacher and nurse, I believe there is much we can learn from each other.
I recently decided to send a survey of 20 questions to 50 people in my circle (family, friends, work colleagues) with the option of participating via sharing perspectives; beliefs and values; and life experiences in the answering the questions. In my simple directions, one's answers can range from brief as a word or two to a lengthier essay, on any / all of the questions.
The subject matter of these twenty questions is of interest / potential inspiration to me. I wanted to see how others felt about these issues as I continue to develop my own answers to this survey.
Over the summer I'll focus on one of the questions, whether monthly on Inspiration Station or on my weekly desk posts, published each Wednesday.
Thanks to those of you who have already sent their answers to me. I've decided to keep your responses general, without identification, unless the answer will be featured as a distinct post.
I invite any reader who is interested in 'weighing in' on some / all of my questions to contact me directly, via this website, e-mail or FaceBook message.
I was inspired, enthralled and amused at this essay-length answer from our friend, author, illustrator and publisher, Michael Friedman of Mockingbird Books. I'm including my question. Mike's answer speaks for itself... take a look!
What do you say?
Does / what kind of music inspire(s) you?
"As a young man, music did not really move me. Sure, I listened to the popular radio stations and had some favorites. The beach music was all the rage in middle and late sixties in California. The Beach Boys My Little Deuce Coupe, played on every radio station. Also, Jan and Dean’s Dead Man’s Curve, and who didn’t want Ronnie & The Daytonas’ Little GTO.
“Heck, I would drive a GTO today if it were in my means. I did have an Oldsmobile Delta 88 that did 120 MPH, but no one ever wrote a song about it.
“That phase ended quickly with an Army haircut and free travel, as long as they picked the locations.
“There were many more musical choices to listen to in a barracks full of young men from all walks of life and all over the country. They all were offered the same free travel deal that I received.
“The Supremes were shouting about where their love went. And a whole bunch of people were suffering through boogie nights, with jungle boogie, that lead to boogie fever. Seems there was some kind of superfly and War was singing about slipping into darkness. Which seemed apropos at the time.
“Once the jungle days ended, along came Elton and Stevie and Donna and of course the kids. That changed the music again. There were Carpenters, and Bread (to be made) and Rocky Mountain Highs. There were Mamas and Papas. And there was work from before dawn until it was time to go to bed.
“Then, about the end of the decade, the music stopped.
“It became clear a house is not a home and there was love on a two way street. Whitney asked where do broken hearts go and Dionne swore, I’ll never love this way again. Donna was still going strong, on the radio.
“The 80’s were blacked-out. I didn’t take the rap. The hip-hop hopped right by without me noticing.
“The music was turned off, tuned out, toned down, timed out, truly. Though I knew of Dolly Parton. I don’t know what it was about her that caught my attention.
“Never asked for my Nickelback, or to pass the Black Eyed Peas. And Backstreet Boys were to be avoided. If someone said Weezer, I reached for asthma medicine. (Though they played at the Playboy Mansion, where I would have to reach for asthma medicine.) I did have an Uncle Kracker or was that a brother-in-law? “So-be-it the 90’s.
“What was the question? Oh, what kind of music inspires me.
“These days, I don’t always listen to music, but when I do, I reach for The Rolling Stones. Today, I appreciate their music much more now than through their decades of success. Gimme Shelter, You Can’t Always Get What You Want, Under My Thumb, Get Off Of My Cloud, and Play with Fire. They somehow found the philosopher's stone (I know a rolling stone.)
“If I go searching for inspiration and think, “That’s it, the well is empty...” I search for Wild Horses by the Rolling Stones or others. We were all young. We were all beautiful and sleek, trim, eyes open, running toward our futures, wild horses everyone."
I thank you for kicking off this initiative in such a meaningful way, Mike. You reinforce that everyone has a story. Sharing with each other is a way to foster connection - through our differences and similarities.
Looking forward to sharing more over the months to come. Looking forward to hearing from 'you' with your answers. Looking forward to next Wednesday when I'll share more musical favorites from my 'poll' on my desk post.
Until then, sending you inspiration and a song in your heart,
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marcoujor, Virtual Buskers' Guild
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