I made a whirlwind trip to Wisconsin to see my youngest sister Sara who just got out of the hospital as her cancer has returned. I know she will "beat it" again this time!!! I was met there by my sister Sue who is also battling cancer....the Big C!! Like so many I've come to HATE this word!!! Hate is a strong word but not strong enough for my feeling about cancer! Spending time together was great but way too short While there I got to play a little music and talk about old times and the future.
How does this relate to songwriting???....well...while songwriting can be a lot of work, pull your hair out frustrating, and down right hard...I many times make this comment about songwriting in my workshops:
"Songwriting HAS to be fun...we aren't curing cancer!!!"
Over the years I have seen music and songs that we write do wonders for people. Music is therapy, it makes people laugh and cry, it lifts the spirit...in other words it just might have "healing powers"!!! I may have a rethink my statement!! Just maybe we ARE curing cancer with the songs we create that touch people's hearts...the ones that lift their spirits. In fact, I KNOW that music and the songs we create can have a "healing effect" on the body and the spirit...I'm convinced of this!!!
Over the years I've been blessed to have been able to write a few songs that have truly touched people's lives...what an incredible feeling. I remember an email from a man from St. Louis who had fallen off a ladder and sustained life threatening injuries. He wrote me an email telling me he listened to my song "Beyond the Rain" every hour for eight straight days and it "got him through" the hard part of healing...kept his focus on hope and getting better! I got a note from a family in Arizona about this song telling me "Beyond the Rain" was their dad's favorite song...at his funeral they enlarged the lyrics on a poster going into the church and the last thing they did was put the words to "Beyond the Rain" in his casket before they closed it!! It helped the family cope with their father's death. Well, I can tell you that I about drenched my computer keyboard in tears reading these notes!!!
I know where much of my inspiration comes from and these times I am just the "messenger" and not the writer!! Because of this I AM POSITIVE that music and the songs we write have "healing power". My song "She's A Stranger In His Mind", about the cruel disease Alzheimer's, is a song that can rip your heart out but so many have come up to me to tell me that the song is "therapy" for them...it says the things that are just to painful to say out loud...the song says it for them and it gets them through some tough times! WOW!!! THIS IS POWERFUL STUFF!!!
So, I have decided to revise my comment that we are not curing cancer...because in some ways I KNOW we are. We still need to have fun songwriting...but...know that the music we create may touch hearts, souls and lives and yes......maybe just help cure cancer!!
Just some thoughts on this Sunday morning...I would ask if you are a praying person that you would send a prayer up for my sisters Sara and Sue...and while your at it maybe for all the other people out there dealing with illness!! Also maybe send up a prayer that the music we create as songwriter's would continue to make people laugh and cry...lift spirits and yes even add a healing power to the world!!
And remember when you are writing songs: SONGWRITING HAS TO BE FUN...WE JUST MIGHT BE CURING CANCER! :)
Write more...whine less!!!