Life is a Spiritual Journey
Songs can Light the way
I was blessed to be born and grow up in the countryside, near Portland Oregon. Being a child of the great Pacific Northwest has influenced my life and my music. I was deeply spiritual from a young age and constantly searching for the meaning in my life, in spite of the fact that I don't come from a religious family. Nature and singing were my first passions. I loved to sing and to wander in the woods by myself. At a very young age I had the awareness that I was never really alone and that someone, or something, was always there guiding and protecting me.
My grandmother was a piano teacher and taught me to play when I was young. This was a blessing because my father was a sawmill worker and we didn't have much money. We lived in a very small house and there wasn't room for a piano, so my grandmother bought me one and had it moved into the unheated shed in our yard. I spent many long hours by myself taking shelter from the rain in that little shed, playing until my hands were cold and numb. A lot of that time was spent messing around on the piano instead of practicing and I felt guilty about it. No one ever told me it was OK to make up songs just because that made me happy.
In the 1960's we moved into the city. Portland was an amazing place to be alive at that time. I took up the guitar and started writing songs and performing in the parks and wherever I could. I even hitchhiked to San Francisco with my guitar a couple of times and performed in Golden Gate park. This was a time of deep spiritual searching for many of us. It was then, when I was still a teenager, that I was blessed beyond measure to be introduced to the guiding Light of my life. From that day on I understood that my life is a spiritual journey and I have tried to live my life by His perfect example and guidance. At that time I also began the daily meditative practice that still brings meaning, understanding and peace to my life, to this day.
Throughout my life I have been a music teacher by day, and a singer/songwriter at night. I have performed both as a solo performer and in a series of bands of nearly every genre, including folk, jazz, country and Rock and Roll. In my younger years I felt like a pioneer, of sorts, because there weren't as many women pursuing careers in music then. My education revolved around music and imagination. I have a BA in Music with an emphasis on guitar and Masters and Doctorate Degrees that focus on the importance of imagination and music in achieving ones full potential in life. In the 1990's, I joined NSAI and had the opportunity to live in the Nashville area for two years, where I attended song writing classes regularly. Through the years I have also participate in many songwriting workshops, classes and performances.
I have faced some extreme challenges that have made me a more more compassionate person and influenced both my spiritual life and my music. For 35 years I have struggled with a serious illness that made it necessary for me to have multiple joint replacement surgeries. I was ultimately forced to stop playing guitar (I still play piano). Also, I have just one son, who is now an adult and the most amazing person I know. He has Autism and is one of my major inspirations. I spent many years of my life helping him learn to love, and not injure himself. From him I have learned courage, peace, quiet, acceptance, surrender and unconditional love.
I am now enjoying the best years of my life. My devotion is stronger than ever, my health is better than it has been for years, my son is doing well and I am back in the Pacific Northwest. My husband is my best friend, and walks the spiritual path with me, and is also my biggest fan. I realize that all of my experiences have been gifts and blessings. I am happy that I am now able focus more on my passion for writing songs. I write for my own fulfillment and inspiration but if, as some have told me, others also find inspiration in the songs, I am grateful to be able to make a small contribution to the world and I give thanks daily for the amazing opportunity.