I The Music Itself lost an amazing fan Friend….
For 20 years I’ve made my living singing songs, Writing songs, and trying to connect with people. Early on in my career I would see the same few people coming into all my shows. a small handful of people who believed in what I was doing or at the very least agreed together that I didn’t suck enough to not go to my show. I used to think when I was younger that these people were insane. Some of them over the top about how much they loved a certain song I sang. Those people slowly became fixtures at my shows, singing along to my shitty early songs, my attempted covers and my jokes. As I got older, and maybe I dunno Wiser I started to listen more. I started caring more about WHY they were there to see me than I was about talking about what I had happening. I got rid of the ego that makes our younger-selves believe that because we’re on a 2 foot stage we’re elevated above anyone else. I started to Listen to WHY they were coming. Each story was different. Each reason for them connecting with my songs or what I do totally different. Ranging from my kids are all grown and you’re the only thing to do on a Tuesday night to This certain song of yours hits me because … I Started to care personally, and some of these people have become some of the best friends and truest friends I’ve ever had.
I started doing StageIT shows after first hearing about it from somebody. I think I was one of the first like 15 or 20 people using it for shows. I had a core group of people that came EVERY WEEK to their screens to watch me rant and sing and laugh and bitch. This is where I was first Introduced to Kay.
The first time Kay_Powers shows up in my StageIT shows is May 10th, 2011-
She quickly became a regular and really the ringleader of these shows, the “Cajun Queen” as some referred to her. If my shows online were a small city of 30 people Kay was the Mayor. As I got to know her, I saw how many people like me she supported. SO MANY artists, SO Much music and SO many people were supported by Kay. It started with all of us on a screen then moved to getting my Stageit Regulars together in the same room to meet and drink and laugh. We did this many times. From people coming to my old Wheel shows, to all of us meeting up at one of their houses. It was incredible. When we would all get together for those that couldn’t make it, Kay would have a computer going to Livecam them in on the action, all while Singing, laughing and snapping more pictures than a Japanese tourist.
We all got close. I started Seeing Kay more, I would do house shows with her at friends houses in Louisiana or they’d travel to a show. She was a HUGE part of Leap & FM. But more.. She would send me messages to take care of myself. Kay was insane, if she was a guitar amp she would’ve been turned to 11, She would jump her ass on a Microphone with me during mid-song. She was The LIFE of the party and the show and the center of the conversation and her laughs, Her story-telling rivaled any goddamn songwriter I’ve ever known.
The music made by all of us, the people she supported was better, because of her. So to all of the Artists out there Elevated by that stage, find yourself at their tables, listen to WHY they’re there and open yourself up to allowing them to be part of your journey and your life.
Kay eventually got sick. Her and my sister bonded over some similar struggles. then I watched something amazing. Through Facebook and social Media as a quiet bystander I saw the amazing humanity of the human spirit. Her spirit which could not be shaken by an illness, Her and her Daughter & friends spent the past few years doing everything they could together. Her Facebook page looked like a travel channel or a Instagram of a touring musician: Lighthouses, Boats, Water, Mountains, Laughs and smiles and hugs. LOVE True undying LOVE that came from the spirits and hearts of her closest friends. Even as Kay Changed in the pictures her smile did not, in fact it did the opposite. As a Bystander just watching from afar it seemed her smile grew wider, her love deeper for the things that truly matter. Our families, our friends, our Hearts. The pictures of her and her daughter in DEEP hugs with large un wavering smiles. The HUNDREDS of pictures of their trips together, including ones from when her and 3 of her friends came to my hometown, met my family, saw my stomping grounds and my bar. Its funny because of all the pictures the one That pops into my mind is one of Kay standing on the boardwalk of Lake Coeur D’Alene by herself staring out over the lake & mountains.When they came to Nashville Kay brought me a Guitar which I made her sign, and the thing that hit me the most is while standing on my porch talking with my wife she said “Thank you for sharing him with us”. I’ll never forget that sentiment. She understood the sacrifice it takes to love someone who leaves like I do.
Her friends & family would send me messages updating me on how she was feeling here and there and more as things progressed.
A Few weeks back Kay & I got on FaceTime, I wanted to see her and I wanted to sing to her. We spent over an hour talking, Laughing and me singing. I played her new songs I plan to record for my live record this year. She laughed at “Drunk” and nodded in approval … We talked seriously and I was sure to tell her I loved her.
I’m so Thankful I had the chance to share that with her. That Talk I’ll never forget.
This Morning I heard that Kay had passed. I felt quiet, and reflective. I remembered the laughs and the crazy times especially early on. and then I was left with a few words from our talk. and then again “Thank you
for sharing him with us” hit me. and as I sit here in a Hotel Bar in Wisconsin, drinking a beer, with tears in my eyes it hits me even harder.
and that is the one thing I think she had wrong..
So to Danielle, Her friends Caroline, Rima, Tammy and all of y’all I’m
leaving out- and to the world, The world out there that exists behind a few chords and lyrics, that un-seen, hidden deeper love for all of us..
Thank YOU for sharing Kay with me and my music. I will never forget you.