I have just spent the week at the most amazing creative camp.
Every year, held in the watchful arms of the Lennox Head, Lake Ainsworth Recreation Centre, a bunch of eighty odd adults gather, to partake in an indescribable week of gospel choirs, songwriting classes, guitar workshops, body percussion and more. And this year, for my second time, I was a teacher for the Vocal Technique session. By the way, The Camp is called Summersong Music camp.
If I started describing it to you, I fear it would start sounding like a cult. Or like a religious gathering, or like something else that it simply is not. It’s just people, from all ages and all walks of life, who have simply been brought together by word of mouth, or google, to grow, and share and relax and challenge. because, lets face it. life can just keep going around, and sometimes it’s ok to reach out for help to kick yourself in the butt to do something you started or wish you started long ago.
I was lucky enough to to teach every day for a week, a stunning bunch of musicians. And to also teach a whole bunch of one on one lessons. I am, undoubtably and simultaneously, elated, euphoric and completely exhausted.
There came to be a common theme though. In myself and in most of the lessons, group and singular.
This hesitation to be who we want to be. and how in the hell do we get there?
To sing how we want to sing. To ponder on if that’s ok. To stare in wonder at people who seem to be at the pinnacle of their musical and personal journey. To usually find out they have as much self doubt as any other.
it got me thinking a lot, to say the least, but in particular about role models.
When I was a child I definitely had people i looked up to, who I thought were the ants pants. Who I thought had it all sewn up. And as I grew up and got to know them, I learnt that no one is perfect, we’re all shrouded in our insecurities.
And now here I am, somewhere along the line I must have grown up. And I’m an aunt and a mum and a teacher and a performer. And though I know I’m not perfect, I do know I want to be a good role model for the next lot coming through.
I want to sing and write, because i know how other peoples singing and songwriting has brought me joy and hope.
I want to love the sound that comes out of me, for all it’s tone, warmth and imperfection because I want to share the complete spectrum of emotion I feel in a lyric.
I want to love my physical form, for all it’s curves and smiles and jubbly bits, and i want to take care of it so it carries me for a long time with the love of my family.
i want to encourage and share this singing thing that i do, to let people know, one at a time, that every one of us is stunning. glowing. beautiful and courageous.
Be the role model you wish you had.
and damn well mean it.