Thursday, February 20, 2014

Knowledge of Music

Jamey Johnson's note to me on my photography work.
"She has no knowledge of music...."

From time to time, if someone doesn't like what I write, I get told that I don't know what I'm talking about or have no clue about music.  I've been told that I didn't understand music of particular genres.  I thought I would take a little bit of time to tell you a little of my background.  Hopefully this will show the naysayers that I'm the real deal, a true appreciator of music.

Throughout my education, I had over 7 years of coursework in the field of music.  I sang in the choir in middle school.  Throughout college, I did extensive research, presentations, as well as papers on the marketing and management of music, as well as historical aspects of country, bluegrass, and rock music.  

During my studies at Berea College, I helped co-produce several of the Celebration of Traditional Music Festivals.  I also produced two cds featured in Appalachian Heritage magazine.  I did the research, song selection, and historical background research on these projects.  One was of CTM historic performances and the other being African Appalachian musicians.

I have been a published concert photographer and journalist in local, regional, and national publications.  Several artists and venues have featured my articles on their websites, including Kid Rock, Jamey Johnson, Oak Ridge Boys, Renfro Valley Entertainment Center, and many more.

For over 4 years, I have provided the country music news through the Nashville News Roundup segment on WFKY - Froggy out of Frankfort, Kentucky.  

I have interviewed: Aaron Lewis, Ashley Ray, Austin Lucas, Blackberry Smoke, Charlie Daniels, Chris Janson, Chris Stapleton, Craig Wayne Boyd, Dustin Lynch, Erin Enderlin, Fifth on the Floor, Freightshakers, Georgette Jones, Grascals, Heidi Newfield, Jamey Johnson, Jim Burns, Joe Bonsall, Jonathan Singleton, Josh Thompson, Kevin Skinner 1st winner of America's Got Talent, Marty Stuart, Michael Poulsen of Volbeat, Nick 13 of Tiger Army, Oak Ridge Boys, Puddin Howell, Randy Houser, Richard Sterban, Rhonda Vincent, Sunny Sweeney, The Roys, Ty Stone, just to name a few.

I've got an extensive collection of country music memorabilia from over the years.  My vinyl record collection is growing each day. I've been fortunate to be able to travel 40-50 concerts a year, as well as visited the Country Music Hall of Fame, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Kentucky Music Hall of Fame, International Bluegrass Music Museum, Georgia Music Hall of Fame, Hank Williams Museum, Johnny Cash Museum, and many other places that honor the tradition and heritage of music.

Over the years, I have learned that you have to open your eyes and ears beyond one particular style of music.  While I love Waylon Jennings, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, and more, I have listened to quite a wide variety of music over the years. I'm the biggest cheerleader when I hear a new song or artist that I enjoy.  I've learned that you should promote the good ones and not discuss those you don't like.  In the end, your friends find out about someone new that hopefully their music helps them.

While I may not write music or play an instrument, I can write about that experience.  I guess by someone saying I have no knowledge of music, it challenges me to write more and share about the music that affects our lives.  Maybe one day I will write a book on those adventures over the years.  :)