Music Promotes Healing and We Need Both Now!
If there is one thing we can all agree on during these controversial days, it is that the release of a virus from a Chinese lab has created a difficult season for so many of us. It’s been a long season of uncertainty, one that’s been filled with grief. Sadness has now clung to us far longer than any of us ever imagined at this time last year. Many have lost loved ones or have suffered other crippling losses, such as the loss of their thriving business that once supported families and community members.
None of this has been easy for anyone to navigate. This long season of pandemic and pestilence has left us very depressed and disconnected. The repercussions of this situation, which is in short a world crisis, are stifling to think about. Even our innocent children are suffering terribly. The class of 2032 has fallen deep into an abyss we probably don’t really want to explore.
Through it all, I have stood strong in my faith, believing that God is ultimately in charge. Even in the storms of life, I can always see Him working on our behalf. I do not think He is happy with the current events of this world, but I believe He loves us and He will get us through this. Making us stronger, and blessing us with grace and abundance that will show us the light in this dark era of our lives.
Whenever I am suffering through difficult times, and I have known a few, stay tuned and you’ll see…I always turn up the music. Music is an important part of healing the soul. It’s a center piece of worship services in churches all around the world and it is a corner stone to introductory and elementary education. Music can transform our spirit and heal our hurts too.
In preparation for this piece, I did do some research on music and healing. It’s well documented and scientifically proven that music heals people. With that being said, I think it’s time we all turned up the music.
Supporting my thoughts and feelings I selected three articles you might find interesting on the subject. According to The Benefits of Music: How the Science of Music Can Help You author Vanessa Van Edwards says, “Listening to music releases endorphins in the brain. Endorphins give us a heightened feeling of excitement. In addition to feeling euphoric, endorphins quell anxiety, ease pain and stabilize the immune system. With high endorphin levels, we have fewer negative effects of stress.”
Then I learned in a recent article published by the Harvard Health Blog for the Harvard Medical School, Andrew E. Budson, MD.; discusses at length “Why Music Is Good For The Brain” about an AARP study we learn how music really effects the brain in detail. Budson says, “So just how does music promote well-being, enhance learning, stimulate cognitive function, improve quality of life, and even induce happiness? The answer is, because music can activate almost all brain regions and networks, it can help to keep a myriad of brain pathways and networks strong, including those networks that are involved in well-being, learning, cognitive function, quality of life, and happiness.”
For a final read I will direct you to Michael Friedman Ph.D.; published a blog piece for Psychology Today “Does Music Have Healing Powers?
Studies shows music is a potent treatment for mental health.” where he points out that, “Research clearly demonstrates that improved social connection and support can improve mental health outcomes. Thus, any music that helps connect people can have a profound impact on an individual’s mental health.”
From my own experiences, music has been vital to healing many hurts. Back in 2019, I put my work here on hold and did my own social distancing before a virus ever invaded our world. I did it was because, in short, things did not go as planned. It was a very painful and dark time for me personally.
I know it seems a little ridiculous to some, but this little website and the work I do here is a dream and a calling for me. I started out thinking I would be the conductor in a sea of music makers. I wanted to be the conduit, the connector!
What I learned is that the people I wanted to help the most, were the very ones that hurt me the most. It was hard really hard to muddle through and make sense of, much like this covid mess is for the world now. I won’t soon forget how it was a struggle to simply survive the underhandedness and hate that was served in my name. Suicide was an option I contemplated, but with loving my son and knowing that I have a greater future with God, I stayed home and prayed my way through it.
Most of the people that were slinging mud on my name, were people I helped. That is a rude awakening, I don’t care who you are. I learned what it felt like to be bulldozed and bullied in about a 30 day span. It felt like one hit after another. The first blow came because I did not pay certain entertainers enough attention. Then the beatings commenced when I deactivated my FB profile so to rewind and regroup from that underhanded takedown. Months later, when I reactivated my account I was greeted over and over again by one post that was penned by someone I always tried to help! This cyber attack would drive me to a near breaking point. Case in point: The bashing. How would you feel?
I have long wondered how I would handle this soul shaking awakening that I was forced to survive. The only way I know is to be forth right. In hindsight, I concur, that post is more of a reflection of those people than it ever will be about me. Today I use that post to help others feel better about themselves when the world is beating them down. The entire post and the thread of hate that follows speaks more about those who participated and nothing of me. In my defense, I unfriended him after reading all of that, and yes, I do unfriend and block people that are detrimental to my peace of mind or cause me pain. Yes, I fire customers who can’t keep agreements. And no I never was paid twice by any band or place! In fact I lost more money than gained in doing this for others. No one has the courage to ask but they can join in the hate. Life is too short to deal with sap suckers and liars that drain you of your good life!
Fact is, after years of trying to do something special for a community of people, I felt defeated, and once that happened, I simply put myself in time out after a very underhanded ordeal. What I can tell you about the person behind the above post, is that he is in a popular band, and works at the only music store in town.
Years and years ago, I showed up at his home, by way of invitation, to watch his new band practice. After a year of playing around town, I would make a connection that would bring them to a restaurant/club in Morehead City. It was agreed upon, via a hand shake, because my word is good and that is how I like to do business, that I would collect a $100 commission on each job they played.
Here is how his band handled that agreement; they paid me $200; $100 for the first two shows they played there and then cut me out of the following 15 shows they played for the months and years that followed the original agreement.
Fact is, even as he was stealing from me, I promoted his band and reached out to help him and his family with emergency relief supplies after Florence claimed their home.
To say that some people’s actions have made me contemplate the important work I do is no understatement. That’s fine. And so am I! God has been good to me always, so forgiveness is essential for my happy heart.
Luckily, I have a small circle of strong friends that lift me! None of the hard hits we take in life are easy and they are often hard to swallow. It does not have to change who we are meant to be though. After sometime I rested in the facts that I did my work! I held up my agreements. Living life is a character building exercise. I feel like what you put out to the universe, the universe will be return to you. I can’t stop people from their destiny. Even if it is their mission to take others down. I also can’t allow that to change my desire to promote and build others up.
Hard lessons are always learned in the darkest days. It was during this quiet time, after the storm, that I grappled with some tough realities. For instance, it became clear that the people I set out to help the most were the very people that hurt me the most. Definitely worth repeating! This forced me to reexamine everything, including my very existence, somedays.
After some time passed, I eventually ventured back out, in search of music so to heal the hurts other caused me. While I was out and about, I was always greeted by blog supporters. Many expressed their dismay of not knowing where the music was playing anymore. Some asked if I would ever be back? A few even begged me to come back. I knew that wasn’t necessary. This is who I am and what I do, so of course, all of the haters in the world can’t change a calling place upon one’s life.
In my time of retreat, I focused on rebuilding my cleaning business. This daily work is what allows me to afford the blog dream. In 2018, Florence wiped me out of two business plans. I finally dealt with the loss of both in late, 2019.
As it stands now, this blog site is 6 years old and still, very much in its infancy. This site is nothing more than a costly hobby right now, but in the long run, I see an app that connects people to their local live music scene, and jobs for free lance music lovers like myself throughout the country.
Though my work is focused on music makers and promoting them, in my down time I decided that this site is truly meant for the readers and the music supporters! We are the ones that to the players because we are the audience, the feed back and the support they all seek.
When the music fell silent in March due to the virus, it became a lot easier for me to accept not blogging, of course, yet I could feel my heart breaking for the many players and club owners that I still loved. Like everyone else, I went in search of a new normal and got certified for cleaning the virus.
After I paid off my bills and rebuilt my credit for the third or maybe fourth time, I came back to this site because music was starting to make its return and the work I do, no matter what people say about me, helps connect people to music. Feeling that music is of great importance to healing, finding it is something we all need to do right now. I, for one, am glad to be back offering this service.
My focus in this rebuild is to support the venues, bars and restaurants that support live music. It’s still my mission to share their music schedules and to continue in my work of connecting people to the local music scene! Making that simple connection for people could make a difference in so many lives; on so many levels. After a long break, one thing is still clear to me; I wish to be the one who introduces you to new talent from the players that are making music on the North Carolina music scene.
Time for the Weekly Recap
More on the Monday Music Makers
Harbour Pointe Happenings
Brian Mac served up the sounds for the dinner show last Thursday evening at Harbour Pointe Bar & Grille. The resident stringer offers many popular hits and loves seeing the crowd participate. His fiancé Beth Eddins came prepared to dress up the conga line with mardi gras masks of glitter, floral leis and more. The duo will be married this fall. Checking out the menu, my dinner choice was the beef stroganoff, served over a bed of egg noodles. The food is always delicious.
This wonderful new bar and grille is open to the public and offer creative weekly specials to enjoy. The Harbour Pointe Bar and Grille is located at the Harbour Pointe Golf Club in Fairfield Harbour. Turn left when you arrive in the neighborhood and use the intercom system to tell the gate guard you are there to eat at Harbour Pointe. Located at 1105 Barkentine Dr. You may dine in or order ahead and take out.
Finding The Blues Beats in Downtown New Bern
Big Jim and his wife Kathy Kohler have enjoyed a weekly gig, upstairs in the in the whiskey bar of Prohibition: Drinks and Desserts.
They have been performing there weekly since the owner, Chris Strange and his wife Grace closed the doors of City Stage. When they owned the venue, they hosted Big Jim’s Blues Jam each Wednesday evening. Now they host Big Jim and Kathy each Thursday evening. Music plays upstairs in the whiskey bar and currently from 6-9 pm.
New Bern Bound for the Weekend
Tan Sanders serves up the Sounds at BrÜtopia on Friday Night
Tan Sanders is a talented young stringer from Goldsboro, NC. I’ve caught his show twice and can say that it’s always a pleasure. I met the singer songwriter a few years ago at The Brown Pelican. I was impressed the first time I heard him, and was equally impressed last week when I became reacquainted with the vibe he offers. He has a lot of fun with his audience as he delivers popular songs they know, mixed in with new songs he would like them to know.
Sanders is a country artist with some serious punk roots. When I reached out to him via Messenger this week I asked about his start to the music business, he replied by saying, “I started playing out in clubs and venues when I was about 15 my mom and dad would drive me. I was playing in punk and hardcore bands at that time but I always had a soft spot for country music because the first 2 records my mom gave me were Hank Williams Jr.’s Montana Café and Charlie Daniels, Greatest Hits. And with my accent country was the only direction I could go.”
Funny to hear him confess that about the first albums his parent’s got for him. While I was out on Friday night he happened to played a sing along song from one of the first albums my parents bought for me. The Gambler by Kenny Rogers is a classic country song, that you rarely hear on the scene. That was pretty cool, being brought back to my first double digits birthday. On my decade old birthday, I also requested albums by Crystal Gayle and Olivia Newton John. It would seem that we both have country roots and rock and roll souls.
The thing I enjoy most is Sanders is his sense of humor. He is a free and easy soul, who enjoys laughter, not just his own, but that of others surrounding him. Like a true entertainer, he is engaging, down home and warm.
I wondered how he and the band were holding up during these viral days, and Sanders said, “Me and my band have been recording through COVID but I’ve mostly been playing solo due to only restaurants having music.”
He wanted readers to know, “We just put out a single and filmed a skate video to go with it. I also have another album out with them band and put out a solo ep last August. I will attach the links to all of that…
Here is the single and video https://open.spotify.com/track/12vwY59YMTMImDryA4mVSi?si=yHigAPqHSru2d6Zyk2AGXwhttps://youtu.be/R0p7nwI8NFA
Here is our previous album https://open.spotify.com/album/1AsKTMPCZuO6uAeoiJ4dEE?si=0qO4JfteSFKCdaFfk2tY8A
And my ep from last year is here, as well as another music video https://open.spotify.com/album/7525yZUDlVpAOzpysklDTH?si=Lfwn4vAxQWywhUx0MidrDAhttps://youtu.be/9C2pi_DEKoI
The country singer with a punk rock edge will return to New Bern in April when he plays a dinner show at Harbour Pointe Bar and Grill on Thursday, April 22, 2021. At press time music is being offered 6-9 pm.
For those looking to catch him this weekend you can find him at Captain Cook’s Friday night in Washington, NC and serving sounds from 6-9 pm
TrainWreck Pulls Into Blackbeard’s
On Friday evening, I checked in with TrainWreck for a set while bouncing about town. It has been more than a year and a half since I have seen this fun and funky party band.
This band is based on Greenville and led by lead guitarist and supporting vocalist, Adrian Watts who formed the band 15 years ago. In the past six years I have seen them several times, hosting many front men and band formations. I have seen them in a big band line up, with a full horn section and I have seen them as a stripped down trio.
Regardless of what version of the band you get, fun music is always the theme offered by Watts and crew in the execution and delivery of a TrainWreck show. They are an awesome option for a private party or wedding band. For those looking to secure a date call the band at 252-543-8685.
Arson Daily Live at Tap That
It has been nearly two and a half years since I last checked in with Arson Daily. These guys are just about all grown up now and rocking the scene with a new disc that they recorded last Spring. “Late Reflections’” is a ten song offering now available where you buy music.
When I caught up with the band last Friday at Tap That Craft Beer and Wine Bar one of the band supporters was giving away discs to attendees in the crowd! She told me, “Someone just came up and donated a bunch of money and told me to hand out free cds, so tonight’s your lucky night.” I was grateful for the gift and have enjoyed it since opening it.
The Raleigh based band came together while the band mates were attending college in Boone, NC. Since graduation the four piece has relocated to the capital city and have kept busy creating music even during the pandemic. This new disc is a really good production that is nicely packaged. I like many of the songs included in the mix but my favorites are Pipe Dream and the title track Late Reflections.
Arson Daily is a fun alternative band worth checking out. They offer refreshing original music with a straight forward delivery. Check out their website to read more and to keep up with the band.
There was Mad Fiddling at The Garage on Saturday
On Saturday evening I popped in to talk with Jason Addams, the Mad Fiddler. I was able to spend a few moments catching up with him and his fiancé before the show. The couple recently got engaged and she is the apple of this entertainer’s eye.
Addams offers an eclectic variety from rap to rock music during his one man band offering. He is skilled and professional. For those who wish to catch a show soon, he recently posted this on Facebook:
MAD FIDDLER DATES 2021
2.12.21 Twin Ravens
2.13.21 Mythic Brewing 6-9p
2.27.21 Nicks Blacktavern 7-10p
3.5.21 The Sour Barn 6-9p
3.6.21 AB Bottle Co 6-9p
3.20.21 Salty Air Open Market 12-3p
3.26.21 Riptidez Cedar Point 6-9p
3.27.21 The Garage 7-9p
The Dust Parade Returns to Tap That
I am going to end the recap here with telling you that the talented Dust Parade came to town last weekend as well.
The band offered a great night of original music to the many fans that turned out to hear the Wilmington based quartet. We will pick things up here next week right here as we talk more to Hank Barbee and find out what’s new with him and the band. Stay tuned.
Music Options for the Days Ahead
Each week I spend time searching for live music events on Facebook. Here is what my search turned up this week, in the hopes of keeping you entertained.
Getting Down Around Town~ New Bern, NC
Thursday, February 4, 2021
Tommy Duzan delivers the dinner music tonight at Harbour Pointe Grille, 1105 Barkentine Dr., New Bern, NC. Music is offered from 6-9 pm.
Big Jim and Kathy Kohler appear live at Prohibition Dessert and Drinks, 243 Craven St. Live music is offered 6-9 pm.
Friday, February 5, 2021
The touring Rob Lightner will offer the sounds from his soul on Friday at BrÜtopia, 1201 Highway 70 E, New Bern, NC. Tunes will be shared from 6-9 pm.
Corey Stuart returns to New Bern this Friday. You can rock with him when he hits the stage at Tap That Craft Beer and Wine Bar, 901 Pollock St, New Bern, NC. Music plays from 6:30 – 9:30 pm.
John Parker brings his band Smokehouse back to Blackbeard’s Triple Play, 415 S Front St., to rock you this Friday on the deck. Music is offered 5:30-9:30 pm.
Saturday, February 6, 2021
Everybody’s favorite rock and country party band Steel County Express Blackbeard’s Triple Play, 415 S. Front St., New Bern, NC. This regional party band plays all the popular hits with jams starting at 5:30 pm.
Scott Arnold will be on stage this Saturday, at Tap That Craft Beer and Wine Bar, 901 Pollock St., New Bern. The music starts at 6:30 pm.
Joe Baes Project will be rocking BrUtopia this Saturday, helping the owners celebrate five years! Music will be played from 6-9 pm. It’s hard to believe it was more than half a decade ago the Tim Dryden were in class together for the Entrepreneur Academy a Craven Community College. He was enrolled to get BrUtopia off the ground and I was there with the hopes of building a music blog.
Congratulations to Tim Dryden and Bryan Conway in their quest to make the world better with more beer. Cheers! The business partners opened their second location on Highway 70 in Havelock last year. They also teach those interested in learning the trade of craft brewery, via a course now available at the college!
Sunday, February 7, 2021
Tap That Craft Beer and Wine Bar offers an open stage to players, poets, singers, and more each Sunday from 6-9 pm. Hosted by Sam Lewis, this open mic is open to all levels and all are welcome to join in the fun. However this week, open mic is on hold. All are invited to come out and enjoy the Super Bowl 55 festivities and food.
Rocking Around the Region
Thursday, February 4, 2021
It’s Date Night on Evans St in Greenville tonight. Live music will be offered by Island Bob.
For those interested, Molly’s Community Café offers a wonderful dinner date experience.
Adam Hill has a show tonight at Villiage Steakhouse. Music starts at 7 pm and is served until closing.
Friday, February 5, 2021
Ponytail brothers in music CC and Nannette will provide the dinner sounds at Parley’s Sip & Steam, 132 E Water St., Washington, NC. Music will be offered 6-9 pm.
New Berns own, Tommy Duzan will provide the music this Friday at AJ McMurphy’s, 1914 Turnbury Dr., Greenville. Music is offered 6-9 pm. Come hungry, and fill up while enjoying the great grooves. sounds.
Live music at Molly’s Community Café this Friday will feature a few local stingers. Come out and enjoy music offered by Will Stovall and Brandon Robertson. Music is offered from 6-9 pm.
Brian Burke has a dinner show on Friday. He will provide the dinner sounds for those dining at the Plank Road Steakhouse. Music plays from 7-9:30 pm
Jeff Young will rock Catalan Tapas Bar, 4214 NW Cary Parkway, this Friday night with music being served from 6-9 pm.
Jake Potter will provide the live tunes at Scooters Bar and Grill this evening. The rocking dinner fun starts at 5 pm and music ends at 9 pm.
For those looking for music around Greensboro, you can check out Megan Doss and Matt Crowder as they team up to deliver the tunes this Friday at Craft City Sip-in. Music will be offered from 6:30-9:30 pm
Saturday, February 6, 2021
Rob Legere will be sharing songs this Saturday at Plank Road Steakhouse
Laura Davis will offer the dinner tunes this Saturday at Parley’s Sip & Steam. Music plays from 6-9 pm
SideTrac Band will be rocking Molly’s Community Café this Saturday. They will be offering the fun tunes that move you from 6-9 pm
Thanks for Reading!
I roam the scene far and wide and bring it all together for you here, in the simple hopes of connecting people to the local music near them!
If you enjoy this blog, support it by sharing it with friends! Donations are always welcome and much appreciated! Thank you for your love and support ~ Tracey Stones.