Click to see Aileeah Colgan sing Ashley McBryde’s “Girl Goin’ Nowhere”
I love seeing Aileeah Colgan’s shows. She and the band have so much fun doing what they do… and she’s really, really, good at it. Whether she is sharing her originals or covering another artist’s song, she puts her whole heart into it and is able to make you feel what you are listening to.
I stopped in to Crusens on Farmington this weekend and caught part of a set. You can see her performance of her original Dotted Line on our Facebook page from Friday night. (We’ll add it to YouTube soon as well.) When she sang the song at the top of this post, “Girl Goin’ Nowhere” by Ashley McBryde, I was hearing it for the first time. I felt like it was particularly appropriate for this blog post!
The second verse says,
“I get these calls, out on the road
Heard your song on my radio
We always said you'd make it big
And I tell all my friends, I knew you back when
So don't forget all us little folks
(And when you crash and burn
Remember we told you so.)”
The song goes on to say
“It took a whole lot of Yes I wills and I don’t cares.
Not bad for a girl goin nowhere.”
It takes a lot of stubbornness and a lot of passion to be a successful musician. Even if you don’t dream of playing guitar for a living, if you’ve ever done something people told you wasn’t worth your trouble… this song hits home.
I’m so glad Aileeah shared it, and that I’m able to share it with you!
Here is an interesting photo and caption that a local musician shared on Facebook yesterday about Tyler Childers playing in a diner and nobody paying any attention in 2014. It was meant to encourage other musicians to keep going even when it seems like nobody is listening.
While it’s great advice for artists, what about the other people in that photo? The people eating at the diner.
What if someone had told them that they were practically ignoring the talent of an artist who, a few years from then, they would be paying as much as $100 to see in concert? (Seriously, check out Tyler Childers on any ticket platform online.)
What if they knew the original song they just paid no attention to was going to be covered by artists in half a dozen genres in a few short years?
What if they had introduced themselves, bought a CD, and asked him to sign it?
Now, that would be a story to tell their friends.
In fact, that is one of the easiest way to get one of those “I knew him when…” stories!
Of course, it’s too late to help them. They missed their chance with Tyler. And, well, they don’t live in Peoria. So they aren’t seeing our music scene, exploding with talent, on a daily basis.
But you are…
Every week you have new opportunities to interact with Peoria’s music scene. And Peoria Music Live is working to help create more of those opportunities for you on a daily basis, in the places you live and work and shop. You will start seeing and hearing them around Peoria, more and more.
So, when you are out running errands or stopping in somewhere to eat, and you hear a local musician playing for you, remember it takes more than just talent for them to stand there and perform.
Nick Sizemore (who I saw share the Tyler Childers post) is another talented country musician from the area. I personally look forward to being able to say "I knew him when!"
They’ve sung in diners and bars where they were completely ignored. They’ve performed six feet from two people who were having a conversation and yelling over the music, like the music was an inconvenience to be put up with. They’ve been told not to bother following their passion, and to get a real job. They’ve been told they aren’t good enough to make it. They’ve heard the clatter of silverware and dishes in the otherwise deafening silence as they’ve ended a song they knew was one of their best.
But there they stand, playing for you anyway. That is a sign of greatness… to be able to square your shoulders in spite of the naysayers and keeping doing what you love, regardless of those who tell you not to… or who just flat out ignore you.
As humans, we a tendency to slip into a self-focused state. We often need to be reminded to open our eyes and see what is going on with other people in the world around us. I think this is especially true in Peoria. Many of us miss greatness on a daily basis, in all areas of our lives.
The good news is, this is an easy fix. In fact, because we live in Peoria, where our music scene is on the rise again, there are an untold number of “I knew her when…” stories, just waiting to be written. All you have to do is support your live local musicians.
While there are a many ways to do that, I’m wrapping this post up with a short list of important ones.
Eleven ways you can support an artist you see playing out, in order from the least amount of energy it will take you to the most.
Look at the artist.
Listen to the music.
Dance. (If there is a place to do so.)
Find them on social media and follow them.
Playlist them in your favorite music streaming app.
Share a photo or a video.
Say something encouraging or complimentary at the break.
Buy a T-shirt or CD.
If you know you don’t intend to do any of those things, ask to be seated further from the artist so you don’t have to yell over the music, and those who want to enjoy it can!
Thank you for continuing to support live local music!
And thank you to all the artists who continue to enrich our lives with music, even when we make it difficult.
In case you weren’t 100% sure that was really Tyler Childers in the photo… Here’s a video of him singing at that diner in West Virginia.