Andy Gullahorn, amazing singer/songwriter from Nashville, connected with a group of InSpero’s creatives this week (those pictured above and more who left before we remembered to take a photo!) and asked us this question, “If we believed our ‘art’ could save a life, how would it change the way we live?" At the same time he challenged us how do you balance believing in the power of your gift/calling while not take yourselves too seriously? (Let's just say he has a dream of being a professional badminton player. There is such a thing.)
Here’s a few thoughts from Gina Hurry about that:
It’s much easier for me to believe it's true for others than for myself and my own work. But I do feel deeply compelled to go after the hearts of others through my work and through conversations around the experience of beauty. I know what it feels like when deep calls to deep. I know those connections have helped save me.
I think I'd keep doing what I’m doing, but take better care of myself in the process. I think If I truly believed in the impact and value of my work, I’d slow down and do less. I’d listen more and listen more deeply. I’d be more intentional and thoughtful in the small things. That goes against my instincts and my culture which tells me to work harder and sacrifice all of me for that one life. But I'm trying to live more lightly while living out my calling.
I could make a list of all the times music or story or the beauty of someone’s kind hospitality has rescued me and saved my life. Maybe this is why the movie August Rush resonates so deeply when August says, ”I believe in music the way that some people believe in fairy tales. I like to imagine that what I hear came from my mother and father. Maybe the notes I hear, are the same ones they heard, the night they met. Maybe that's how they found each other. Maybe that's how they'll find me. I believe that once upon a time, long ago, they heard the music and followed it.” I think we all want to be found, we all want to deeply connect. When I’m painting I’m looking for a way to connect to something or someone. Maybe that's a form of belief for me?
Andy is giving a benefit concert this Sunday evening at Cahaba Brewery. If you’re interested in music that will draw you in with laughter and take you deep places, here’s the link.
We're getting ready for one of our favorite events, InSpero's Fourth Annual Magic City Storytellers. Appetizers, wine and beer will be served on the beautiful porch of the Clubhouse on Highland from 6-7. Performances 7-9 pm with an intermission with desserts and coffee from The Neighborhood Brew. If you want to come, don't wait. We sold out last year and only have about 10 tickets left as we put this newsletter together. Please link here to order. We are grateful to donors who've helped fund this event so we can keep ticket prices low. Link here to see our great and eclectic line-up of singer/songwriters, fiction/prose writers, and poets all living in Birmingham.
We were stirred by Jonathan's discussion of territories vs. hierarchies as it relates to artists and writers. As a writer himself, he encourages creators to push past the tendency to compare and tend to their own journeys as creators.