Choosing Joy — First Anniversary

Choosing joy ….creates so much room for love, growth, and experience.


I didn’t want to let this day pass without acknowledging the anniversary of Document: Freedom: Spring and the life saving surgery that happened the same day, 10/21/22. It was a little bit like two births. And what’s come from it has been so life affirming. Thanks to the sweet people who wrote testimonials for the record, Todd Lawrence, Dee Madden, Imani Tolliver, Steve Hochman, and Mark Davis. Thanks to Simko for taking pictures when I realized that I didn’t have any photos from the concert! Thanks to Ray Moore for helping to make it sound like a record.

Then Anne Dixon introduced me to Raspin Stuwart who brought me to Lyd & Mo’s, where Mo tried to convince me that I was playing jazz and asked me to curate a monthly jazz night — and I’d be the featured artist. It seemed a little outrageous to me, but it pushed me to reach out to amazing musicians like Russell Ferrante, Edwin Livingston, Reggie Quinerly and Nailah Porter who joined me to do a Jazz Vespers at All Saints Church where I did my best to channel Mahalia Jackson and Sam Cooke. I felt so bolstered by that experience.

And the gift Mo gave me, I’ve been able to share with my friends, giving other artists a chance to do something different or re-energize what they’ve always done before this incredible loyal audience of deep listeners at our First Fridays Jazz Nights.

Somewhere along the way this has also re-energized my recording studio and I’m starting to record more people there, holding a safe space for creativity.

This is only a snippet of the good that’s come in the past year or so when I decided to put something positive into the world on surgery day. Choosing joy and letting go of what’s toxic in one’s life creates so much room for love, growth, and experience. I feel high and so grateful.

Thank you to my family. Thank you to the good people at Kaiser. Thanks to Bandcamp. Thanks to the Warner Grand Annex. Thanks to you for being such loving supporters of what I try to do with music and building – and supporting – community. 

You are a gift to me.

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