It is funny how experiences can be so mundane to some and, yet to others, those same moments can be the onset of a lifetime of joyful memories. For me, one particular moment that stands out is the first time I saw a movie musical. All I can remember is how utterly obsessed I was with the whole production. I loved the way it made me feel. I loved (still do) singing all of the songs. After I had seen it for the first time, all I knew was that I couldn’t get enough and I wanted to watch it over and over again. I was just a kid playing at a friend’s house when I was introduced. I recall her description of the film vividly. She said, “it’s about a singing cleaning lady and a bunch of kids who didn’t have a mom.” She was referring to “The Sound of Music”. What can I say? We were nine. Who knew that a movie, that movie, would have such an impact on me and my musical journey.
After my first taste of music (via the greatest musical on planet Earth), I spent many years on a homemade stage with my sisters and neighbors where I produced and starred in many performances…for the neighborhood. Fast forward to eighth grade when I made my debut on a real stage: my catholic school’s gymnasium. I performed Liza Minelli’s “Cabaret”. Nothing like a buck-toothed, painfully awkard, pre-teen dressed like a jazz-singin’ floozy to really get the crowd going. That moment was my first real stage experience and it was official: I was in heaven.
To indulge my musical desires, I decided to give the violin a whirl. Can’t win them all. Noone, and I mean noone, sucked worse than I did at “playing” that instrument. The entire family suffered in silence as I scraped that bow along those strings for several long years. It was the biggest relief in the world to finally retire that beast because, let’s be real, I didn’t love the violin. My heart wasn’t in it. I headed to the only room I should have been in from the very beginning: my high school’s choral room. I was finally home. Every day in choir was a good day. I made life-long friends, learned more in that class than algebra and made some classic memories. Being a part of an ensemble like that was incredible for so many reasons. And, once it was over, there was a always a “little piece of my heart” that felt empty. I missed singing. I like the way my soul feels when I do it and anyone that knows me knows that. Because of this, I have always managed to find my way to the stage in some way.
Fast forward, ahem, 20 years, to some epic karaoke moments and countless stage crashing incidents that helped to fill that void. Special thanks to my friends and my biggest fan, Disco Dean, I am no longer high-jacking bands of which I am not a member. Instead, I am now singing in one where they actually welcome me. LOLOLOL. I am no longer feeling the blues. Now, I am singing the blues and some good ole-fashioned rock and roll…with The Pigs and I must admit…it is everything I thought it would be, and then some. Real.Fucking.Fun.
But singing and how it makes me feel is only one half of the experience. The other half of the pleasure comes from seeing all the people and the fun they are having while I sing. Music brings people together and makes people feel good. That makes my heart full. At the end of the day, I want to nourish my own soul with joyful moments. When I sing, I feel like I am galloping along on one of Lauren’s many unicorns. Being a contributor to the good feelings of others as a member of The Pigs is a past time that derives more pleasure than chocolate and I am certain that it has added at least ten solid years to my life.
Why don’t you hop on this joy bandwagon I am driving, add a couple of years to your own life, and come out for our next gig!
Love it. Live it. Share it.