Basic Principles of Creativity

It’s interesting to me, finally making time to learn “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron. As I said yesterday, I’ve been in a slump. I want to be more productive creatively, and I have identified areas I need to change.

Ms. Cameron sets out to list the ten basic principles on page three of the Introduction! Talk about knocking your socks off right in the beginning! While talking about Spiritual Electricity, Ms. Cameron lists these principles: (these are directly from the book, not my words).

  1. Creativity is the natural order of life. Life is energy: pure creative energy.
  2. There is an underlying, in-dwelling creativity force infusing all of life— including ourselves.
  3. When we open ourselves to our creativity, we open ourselves to our creativity, we open ourselves to the creator’s creativity within us and our lives.
  4. We are, ourselves, creations. And we, in turn, are meant to continue creativity by being creative ourselves.
  5. Creativity is God’s gift to us. Using our creativity is our gift back to God.
  6. The refusal to be creative is self-will and counter to our true nature.
  7. When we open ourselves to exploring our creativity, we open ourselves to God: good orderly direction.
  8. As we open our creative channel to exploring our creator, many gentle but powerful changes are to be expected.
  9. It is safe to open ourselves up to greater and greater creativity.
  10. Our creative dreams and yearnings come from a divine source. As we move toward our dreams, we move toward our divinity.

(Back to my ideas, words, and musings.)

I’m greatly enthused by reading these principles. Of course creativity is part of the natural order. Have you ever met a kid that doesn’t pretend to do/be something? They create worlds they are part of, they learn and grow in those creative endeavors. We shouldn’t discourage them. But we do. Everyone eventually is expected to fit in and comply.

The arts are where we can keep that alive. Kids need somewhere to be themselves, who they are meant to be. Music, acting, and art are where they can be. The more they learn, the more they can create. My friends at McGuigan Arts Academy do that very thing, here in Omaha, Nebraska. These folks are helping to water the creative seeds in all the student’s minds. Kids that are all talented and need to be encouraged what to do with it. It’s an amazing thing to see and experience. If you can make it possible for your children to experience classes in the arts, creativity, and growth, please make that possible. I was lucky and had piano lessons. My teacher lived across the street, and she wanted me to play classical music. I was more interested in Rock and Roll music. I quit after 8th grade.

Cameron suggests reading these principles every day. Eventually, we’ll be able to see our progress. Things we notice we didn’t notice before. I’ll take note of what changes in my outlook, the things I notice. I think this is pretty cool. And as for now? The Babe and I have some appointments today, and to navigate whatever Mother Nature left us last night while our family in South Dakota got about another foot of snow. Be safe out there, and we’ll see you tomorrow. Be Safe!

Another Year of Y & T In the Books

Since we started attending Yesterday and Today, an interactive Beatles show, there have been familiar things and new things. The McGuigan Brothers (and now Billy’s son Ciaran), have been entertaining the Omaha area audiences for quite a few years now. The pandemic changed some dates, and now, they are at a great facility downtown called the Slowdown. It’s perfect for them. Hard to believe it’s been nine years since we started going to see them. Sure, we’ve attended nine years in a row, but the show is totally different every time. If the audience doesn’t have fun, it’s on them. Kevin Klimowski attended over 40 times over the years. I believe him, too. Always nice to run into him at a show, but I missed him last night.

The addition of the saxophones and strings was beautiful. Billy adds that touch every chance he gets. Most of the music from that era has a full orchestra recorded. I remember the sounds we took for granted with our music back then. To hear it again live is the best. Many memories are in that room with the band every night. I think if we could thank the person responsible for this treasure of Omaha, it may sound something like this:

Dear Bill,

The folks of Omaha want to thank you for being such a force behind your sons that helped fuel their love of the Beatles, which resulted in the unbelievable show running several weeks. As you know, they perform every year in Omaha and also take it on the road. They’re international stars! And you started that! You also taught them what family is and how the members support one another. You taught them to come in for a group hug, and remind them they can get through anything Together. They showed that when they lost you, (way too soon). They’ve had many life events where they’ve helped each other, and get through it, Together.

We know you have the best seat in the house for every concert wherever they are in the world. We’ve had the pleasure of not only your sons performing, but now grandson Ciaran is becoming a force with his dad and uncles. His guitar playing is quite respectable, so much so he’s playing Clapton’s part of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.” He is incredible. And we can’t believe he’s only 14. He’s the product of hard work, talent, and great teaching. It all shows. I cannot wait to see how he continues his growth musically, and as a person. Those crazy uncles, Dad, Jay, and Max will help him learn to navigate the world with more McGuigan wisdom. Several of your other grandchildren are becoming well acquainted with acting, music, singing, and art. Collectively (and individually), their talents are huge. See what you started? It’s a great thing.

I’ll share videos below. We’ve attended so many years in a row. And we’ll keep attending as long as we’re physically able. We’ll most likely see your great-grandchildren perform in the arts. Thank you. From the bottom of our hearts.

A Grateful Omaha

Younger Ciaran & Dad, Billy
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Matthew McGuigan and Jay Hanson
Here Comes The Sun
Yellow Submarine Ciaran w/Uncle Ryan

Folks, sorry I can’t recall this song. I still included it because of the guitar playing. He is only 14. What a bright future! Most kids that age wouldn’t want to put in that much hard work to achieve this. Good job, Ciaran!

If you’re in the SlowDown’s area in Downtown Omaha, tonight and tomorrow night are the last two performances, if there are tickets left. Getcha some!

In another ten years, maybe it will be called, “Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow.” Rave On Productions. McGuigan Arts Academy. A treasure for Omaha. Lucky us. Thanks, guys! See you next year, and at all the productions in between.

Christmas Week, 12/21/2022

I’m sure hoping we don’t get bad weather tonight to cause us to miss our date night tonight, “Yesterday and Today,” with the McGuigan Brothers, Billy, Ryan, and Matthew. They put on a great show of Beatles music. Their love of the Beatles came from their father. They memorialize him every time they take the stage, and I’m sure he smiles down from heaven every time. The band is expanding to include Ciaran McGuigan, Billy’s son, who is a budding Eddie Van Halen, Eric Clapton, or Wolfie Van Halen. His guitar playing is improving by leaps and bounds, and I’m eager to see what he adds to his playlist for this and their other shows. Cross your fingers we can make it safely there and home. We’ve gone for the last nine years.

We had good news from the repair guy for the ice maker. The guy did the work three years ago. When the error happened, he read the codes on the computer. He is familiar with the parts and expected longevity for them. He gave us a tip about Samsung, as they now replace these parts when they break down. Great to know for future reference. We were grateful to afford the service/repair. We both had times in life where we could not afford what we spent today. Very thankful.

Finishing up the tree will be the order of the day today. And a dentist appointment for me this afternoon, hopefully before the weather sets in. It should just be a simple winter storm, but the cold will be brutal for the weekend. Hope we all keep safe and warm. Get lots finished up for the big day as you may be inside tomorrow. Thank you for reading today. We will see each other tomorrow.

To Whomever Is In Charge

of the universe:

Where there is any pain, hurt, upset, bad things happening, broken hearts, loss, grief, and all the other terrible stuff humans must endure, let there be music. Specifically, let there be people who play music for their audiences who love what they do, who understand how important their job is. All the hope, healing, and positivity I needed were served up family style last night at Sumter Theater. It was a very hard week with a perfect ending.

Mark Irwin, you were wonderful. The folks around us were talkers, so we couldn’t hear all of your stories, but did glean your story about your last son being born, and that you are going to the studio and record again. I have yet to introduce myself to you, but plan to some day. Our fathers were best of friends when they both worked at the Omaha World Herald for a lifetime each. My dad’s been gone for 34 years, and yours for ten. As you stood talking to someone before you were set up to perform, I had a sort of flashback. You stood with your hands on your hips, talking. In that instant, I saw your dad standing there. No, I’m not a weirdo. Your posture reminded me of him the very few times I ever saw him as a child. I thought you’d like to know that. My dad had so much respect for him.

Let these people gather to teach children their skills and their joy with music, let the children learn and be confident to be onstage at a young age, say 14 1/2, and have the knowledge they can play a Clapton song, and do it darned well. Great job, Ciaran McGuigan. Your skills amaze me, and I cannot wait to see how you progress. Max Meyer, well done! Not only your playing onstage, but you are imparting your knowledge to kids who act as sponges to absorb it all. How awesome!

Evelyn Hill not only belts out a song with a gigantic voice, she dances across the stage to show you she means business! I love to see you perform with the group, wherever they are, whatever they’re doing. Go see her, folks. She’ll knock your socks off.

The sax section was even choreographed a little, good job, guys. The strings! Oh my, both of these sections are what these songs need to be heard as their creators intended. All the sounds help draw out all the feelings the musicians have and can play; and the audience feels it.

Ryan McGuigan, you are always a presence onstage, and last night was no exception. Your performance had not only your usual, but you have a bounce to your step, and an extra happy smile these days. Life must be treating you well. You deserve that.

Matthew McGuigan, your arranging and composition of a new intro for Billy’s song about Cartney was on fire. It had quite a kick to it, and you made all of those songs sound like they should. I love your singing, you should do more!

Billy announced they had an all girl stage crew! Girl Power! Those ladies knew what they were about, and they did it all in fine fashion. Cartney McGuigan managing backstage, Kate, Carly, and the other young lady (so sorry, I didn’t retain your name), you were always right on, in addition to taking care of merch ahead of the show. They all were having a blast, too.

The drummer (another name I didn’t catch) is top-shelf. He rocks it out like no one I’ve seen before. Look forward to seeing you perform again.

Kathy Kersey, Kate, it was good to talk briefly with you, too. You both add a lot to all that goes on there. Thanks for all you do.

And Billy. Once again, you delivered in a huge way. Your music made life brighter and more positive last night. Keep on doing what you’re doing. You keep getting better at it, and I don’t know how. It’s a gift. It’s also a lot of hard work. No one gave this all to you. You, Ryan, and Matthew have worked harder than anyone realizes to be where you are today. And you’re going to keep soaring. And thanks for all you do. Until the next time. Rock On!

Pure Imagination

Last night, we had the experience of a lifetime. We attended Rave On Productions “Willy Wonka.” It was so much fun. All of the children were students at the McGuigan Arts Academy. This is one talented group of kids. Some of the parts were played by children of the McGuigan brothers. How proud their Grandpa Bill would be! Who could have thought all those years ago, when those three boys learned to play instruments, sing along to the great music of the Beatles, and eventually have an internationally traveling group of performers, that so much good would come from all of it?

Jay Hanson was perfect as Willie Wonka. He has such a mischevious look in his eye. It was displayed often and well during the performance. There were adults in the ensemble, but most of it was on the kids. And the five gold ticket winners were played so well. Lessons abound in the play.

My apologies for not knowing the names of all the kids. What I learned about each of them while watching the performance is they are learning not just how to sing, act, dance, play with each other. They are learning teamwork, cooperation, respect of their fellow performers, and that everyone does something well. And it’s not just the kids; the adults respect each other, too.

We like to sit close, and from the second row, we could tell how the encouragement they offered each other shows in their eyes. All of the actors showed absolute respect for each other and their personal space. This is key in today’s world. On the way home, I told the Babe how nice it was to see dancers (Oompa Loompas) have actual clothes on. Being Dance Grandparents, we’ve seen the skimpy costumes and over sexualization of little girls for years. This does not happen at the Arts Academy, and I applaud that. Pure respect for everyone. Something you don’t see a lot anymore. Kudos to the culture, leadership, and people of McGuigan Arts Academy.

I borrowed a Facebook photo posted by Kate Whitecotton earlier today of the cast on closing afternoon. Speaking of Kate, I have to say, you don’t often see a CEO who works as hard as she does. Kate helps set the stages, tune guitars, place water for hydration near all the musicians, takes photos, herds the cast and musicians around so everyone is where they need to be, and is shoulder to shoulder with the newest on the crew. No job is below her. Kate, you are such an asset to Rave On Productions. Omaha is lucky to have you here. Thank you!

The whole premise of Willy Wonka’s story is using your imagination and actually seeing what exists around you. Learning lessons, telling the truth, apologizing when you’re wrong, it’s all part of becoming a good citizen. I believe these things are taught at McGuigan Arts Academy. If we had grandchildren those ages, I’d love to have them involved. Ours are into competition dance, school dance team, and elite sports. We’ll always be in the Academy’s audiences, though, cheering for other people’s grandkids. It’s just so much fun.

Keep your eyes out for the next endeavor of the Rave On/McGuigan Arts groups. August 11, 12, and 13, Billy and his band play at Sumter Ampitheater. Get your tickets now for a great night of entertainment. You’ll be glad you did.

The theater is beautiful, as were the 50s era backdrops. They were a perfect mix. We all need more imagination and creativity in our lives. Let’s practice that this week. And making the best of things. Being positive. Have a beautiful week. See you tomorrow.

Introducing . . .

Roxie, the illustration by Jordan Ullom.

Jordan is my graphic artist I met through volunteering. What a great way to meet, and see what she can do! She does illustrations, album and book covers, and has musical talents, too. The whole package. She has worked very hard to earn her degree and establish herself in the Omaha area. Hoping to work with her for a long time.

Today, I’m editing. Starting from scratch in a way. By asking people I trust to give an honest opinion, I got straight answers as to how I can improve my children’s book. It’s easy to sit in my studio, thinking I did a great job, when I know it could be better. I’ve read where feedback is horribly painful. It’s not when people are kind to you. It also helps to know you don’t have all the answers. It’s good to be realistic. That said, it is hard to delete your photos, words, and change things. It’s not going to be it’s best unless I use the feedback.

I’m listening to the music of Billy McGuigan, and brothers Ryan and Matthew. The CD Yesterday and Today plays a part in showing how naughty Roxie, my little white puppy was. She tried a bite of the CD (she was a counter surfer. Naughty girl)! I was heartbroken. The Babe just had open heart surgery a couple days before Christmas in 2014. We had just seen this show at a local playhouse. The whole story about the show, the family, is a great story. We’ve been fans ever since. We rarely miss a show they’re a part of locally.

So, once the Babe was home from the hospital, Roxie did this terrible deed. I was able to get another copy of the music that got me through nearly losing the Babe. It helped me remain positive and certain things would be OK. And they were. Thanks to these guys and their music, it was much easier to be positive. Those months of recovery were the hardest thing to go through in our life together.

It only seemed right to me to write my first children’s book about our Roxie and how she taught our grandson Gavin about grieving and healing. My first regular blog was about the day we lost Roxie. Someone left our gate open (4th of July fireworks retrieving we think), she ran out, went to a busy highway and was killed by a car. We were heartbroken. Gavin was devastated.

So as I once again look at Eric Carle’s quote, it’s all making much more sense. I believe things come across my FB feed and into my mind for a reason. They serve as encouragement. A kind word to keep me going. Sure, the easy thing would be to quit. But that’s an automatic failure to succeed. I can handle trying and failing. I can’t handle quitting and failing. I won’t quit, either. Not unless I become mentally or physically unable.

Today, I’m down to 150,000 words. More to cull!

I need a break from the computer and my words right now. Going to pull weeds while the dogs play outside. This is the start of a great weekend, and I hope yours is, too. Be grateful, be humble, and be open to new things. It helps keep you young. See you tomorrow!

An Editing Tuesday

I’m digging in today, editing did not make it on the agenda yesterday. We have family in town for their work, and they are at a motel near the Corporate Headquarters. Evenings are for family!

I have a new FB friend, an author of one novel and several children’s book. Sounds like my brother from another mother! Jordan J Scavone, Author posted something yesterday that stole my attention and made me feel so good and get over the apprehension of editing. Just because I’ve never done this before doesn’t mean I can’t. (Thank you, Billy McGuigan, the absolute KING of doing things he’s never done before)! (P.S. If you’re in Omaha, go see his production of Willy Wonka this weekend at the Scottish Rite Theater downtown. It’s going to be a blast! Get tickets at Rave On Productions. You’ll be glad you did)!

I’m in!

I printed this out and have it on my desk to look at when I get frustrated or confused. I have some great feedback and suggestions from my illustrator and a friend who publishes books about grief. Couldn’t have asked two better ladies for feedback about my book.

After publishing the blog today, I’m staying right in my seat, and starting with a fresh copy of “Roxie,” and begin on the cover (or the first page of the story). Have you ever wondered about all those pages, the cover, the obligatory blank pages, the legalese page, the dedication page, other blank pages before you reach page one? Someone had to put those together! They’re vital to someone, somewhere on this earth. We all flip past them, unless we’re looking for a date published. I used to do that with books for school. Bellevue University had HR books from the 80s when I enrolled in an accelerated degree program in 1994. $500 for a box of books that were pretty old. Sheesh!

I love how Eric Carle says those who write picture books begin with 200,000 words. An exaggeration but the point is valid. Before we meet our illustrator, we have many, many words. I used them to describe many, many, many things I wanted illustrated. Two creative people, one with words, one with illustrations talk. The illustrator nods, she goes to her creative corner to draw. Jordan Ullom did a fantastic job. Just wait until you see the illustrations. I found it magical when I saw my characters come to life! Oh my gosh, it was fantastic! It’s a rush. My heart rate is up just writing about it! Or it’s the coffee. Never mind. It’s a rush.

I absolutely adore kid books. When my kids were little, we read constantly. I loved doing all the voices, and often did. When I first did that for Addison, she leaned back on my lap and looked at me as I talked in a different voice. She laughed. So did Joell and Gavin. That’s the reaction you go for, and they were always eager to have a story. She and she are now 15 and in high school. The kids who have sat on my lap as I read to them are many. I hope to influence other kids to love to read and their parents to instill it by reading to them from birth. It’s a great bonding experience.

My dad always said, “If you can read, you can do anything!” He was so right. I think of those words often. More so, I recall the example he set for us. He consumed printed material as he consumed coffee. He always had a book, magazine, or newspaper nearby. A childhood friend told me one time, “Your dad must be so smart.”

I asked her, “Why?”

“Whenever I see him, he’s always reading something!”

That scenario stuck with me forever, too. Our mom also read, but during the day we only saw her doing chores and taking care of us. She had women’s magazines from the grocery store, and we had bookcases full of books in several places in our home. The example was always right in front of us. I cannot thank our parents enough for their example of reading. Mom has macular degeneration now and has very limited vision. She hopes to at least read one page a day, on bright days when she can see better. It’s a cruel twist of fate for someone who loves to read.

Here we go, boys and girls! I’m on the high dive at the Olympics and don’t know how to swim! I’ll learn on the way down from the diving board, just before I hit the water. Here’s hoping the Eric Carle phrase gets me through my first session of editing. You all have a great day. I’m going in! See you tomorrow!

Sunny Sunday

What a beautiful weekend this has been!

It’s too bad, our car show wasn’t successful today. Word went out directly to car clubs and members, yet we still didn’t have a good turnout. Last year we had several very successful shows, and we just need to follow that formula for the future. Hopefully, they will be better the rest of the summer.

Last night was another wonderful concert in Glenwood, Iowa with Billy McGuigan and his incredible band. We’re amazed at the talent Billy continues to assemble. We are familiar with him, his brothers Ryan and Matthew, who are incredible musicians (and Ryan also an actor), Lead Guitarist Max Meyer (who teaches guitar at McGuigan Arts Academy), and apprentice Lead Guitarist Ciaran McGuigan (a student of Mad Max’s); and they have added Jesse White (a great vocalist) as a drummer (who knew he played?). Wow, Billy. What other surprises can you spring on us? I’ll have to drink a few Red Bull’s before your next performance to keep up with your energy. Sometimes people my age say energy is wasted on the young. Someday, Billy will say that but no time soon.

Having been an audience member at many of Billy’s concerts, I can tell you it’s a pleasure to sit near people who have never heard him perform before. They are blown away! I saw a permanent smile on the lady behind us, who ooh’d and aah’d all through the concert. She’s a new fan, guys, I’m guaranteeing you!

Billy, I loved your stories about Lady Di, your neighbor with the garden. Your interpretation of your over-the-fence conversations was lovely. You’d be quite the neighbor for an elderly lady with a garden to have. Respectful, kind, and in the music business. What a story she must be able to tell about your conversations! That’s what life is about; all of us living great stories, and telling those great stories to each other. It makes God happy!

All I can say, is go see Billy McGuigan’s Rock Orchestra. It’s at Sumtur Amphitheater in Papillion, NE, on August 11, 12, and 13th. You can obtain tickets through raveonworldwide.com. Pop Rock Orchestra.

Have a beautiful evening and start to your week. See you tomorrow!

Summer Saturday

This is adding up to be a great summer Saturday. The weather gods have cooperated with some outdoor events we’re part of for the weekend.

Today, friends from Moving Veterans Forward are having a Poker Run with Defiance Harley Davidson. There will be friends there from Guitars for Vets, singing from 2 – 5. Check the FB pages for these folks or the VFW Post 2503 and check hours, locations, etc. The header photo is the poster for today’s event.

Tonight, the Babe and I are going to Glenwood, Iowa for an outdoor concert with Billy McGuigan and his band. Even though the event is outdoors, the Amphitheater is beautiful, shady, and much cooler temperature wise than you would think. The music is always top-shelf, and we’ll have a great time. Every time we see them, we cannot believe how much better they continue to be. How can you improve on perfection? Dang, if they don’t do it every time!

The thing I always think of is they didn’t just wake up one day and achieve this level of awesomeness. It has taken years and years of practice. And it shows. They are still humble people, and grateful to their audiences. It does my heart good. Music saves my sould, over and over.

Tomorrow morning, the VFW Post 2503 has a breakfast from 8 – 11 a.m., then at Noon, they are having a Car Show. They are always great fun, and free. Bring the kids and check out the cool cars, motorcycles, and trucks. The awards will be at 3 p.m. Great family fun all day. Proceeds go to our friends at 50 Mile March. They’ll be present to visit with you about their mission, training, and goals.

Recently, on a local news broadcast, there was a story about VFW’s in Nebraska closing down. The story sounded as if all VFW Posts were closing down. It has caused a lot of concern with a lot of people. I even had a call from a cousin from Western Nebraska who read the story. Lots of upset all over the place.

I feel strongly about accuracy in stories, blogs, and especially the news. I commented on the FB posting of the story that the reporter should come to our post and see how vital and busy it is. I suppose it won’t be done, the story will not be amended, and lots of people will not know the truth. I find that sad.

Even fiction authors need to do research. Sometimes, that takes longer than writing the manuscript. You cannot put incomplete information out there, it leads to all sorts of problems.

Write it right, for heaven’s sake! (Kathy Raabe)

I’ve got some things to take care of before the Babe gets home from the two funerals he and the Honor Guard conducted honors for this morning. Another thing, our VFW Post 2503 has the busiest Honor Guard detail in the state. It’s not unusual for them to have two or three funerals a day. There is a lot more to our story!

Have a beautiful day today, friends. Help me get to 1,000 followers by following me at this blog site. We are holding at 929. Let’s shoot for 1,000! Need your help on this one! Can’t do it without you! Thank you, and we’ll see you tomorrow.

The Hope in Music

People can talk about how rough the Pandemic, lock-down, and ensuing time has been on us. We are supposed to be nearly back to normal now. After that rough time, I deemed Billy McGuigan and his brothers, (international touring entertainers living right here in Nebraska) Ryan and Matthew, to be the cure for COVID. They were the first live show we saw, socially distanced, after the long quarantine. It restored my hope in life continuing.

Once again, last night we attended the last show, “Don’t Stop Me Now,” in a 3-show run at the beautiful Sumtur Amphitheater, in Papillion, just down the highway from us. (Do I sound like a small town-girl?). Only when I heard the fantastic band play and cast sing did I realize how off I’ve been from all the constant bad news this year; the children killed everywhere while at school, the economy, prices spiraling out of control. My soul has been given hope again. The hope there is in music.

For the first time in my memory, the show had an emcee other than Billy, who emceed the first night. The second night, Julie Cornell, of KETV Newswatch 7 emceed, followed on Saturday by her co-anchor, Rob McCartney. They are both great people in the community and regular people. He added some humor about the huge storm that passed through about an hour before showtime.

The show’s musical director was Matthew McGuigan. He had a different presence onstage last night. He is a genius with music anyway, and was much more animated last night. He comes up with some really fantastic arrangements; they make full use of the vocal ranges the women and men have. It is a thing of real beauty to all your senses. And the instrumental parts are always top shelf. What will he think of next? Great things, I’m sure.

Not only did I regain hope in the world, but seeing all these younger people Billy has brought into his talent pool are all so good, so full of promise. They will carry the torch of hope forward for all of us. Each night of this three gig run, a student from the McGuigan Arts Academy selected one student to be featured with the band as a lead guitar solo. Last night was a young man named Miles. He was fantastic! Had his first band photo taken and posted. He played well, and, most important, he had the rock-star-head-motion to move his massive head of hair out of his eyes. That’s the critical part, boys and girls! The header photo is his very first band photo!

I’m delighted to see Cartney McGuigan co-wrote this production, utilizing her love of all things acting and singing. She also was the best stage manager (giving Kate Whitecotton a chance to sit and enjoy the show!). Here’s a link to their website, to read about all the great performers; Erika Hall Sieff, Nina Washington, Evelyn Hill. Jesse White, Ejanae Hume, and Julian Hinrichs. Check out the other shows scheduled for this year; Willie Wonka, Pop Rock Orchestra, Yesterday and Today. It’s the real deal, folks. See these shows. All of them. You will love these people as I grown to.

Below, I believe was one of the first time Ciaran McGuigan performed with dad, Billy. I share this because you see the young man, feel he’s a bit nervous, but is determined to do this. Glances to his band mates help. The beautiful Beatles song, Yesterday. It’s from December 8, 2019.

It All Starts Somewhere





Now that your eyes are sweating, fast forward to last night. In this photo, to the left, the young man with the red guitar, is also Ciaran. I feel like a grandma (well, I guess I am one) saying I cannot believe how he’s grown! Not only in stature, and maturity, but also in guitar playing. He is to be watched, believe me!

Ciaran has the red guitar. And he has a collection to switch off with, too. He’s as tall as his Dad & uncles! (sorry guys, it had to happen).

Check out McGuigan Arts Academy. If you kid is going to have any kind of lessons, they may as well learn from the best.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, guys. Know that your hard work is appreciated so very much. You do what gives me hope for life again. Go see them, wherever they travel. billymcguigan.com is where you can find schedules for all things related to these guys. If you live in Iowa or Nebraska, he’ll be at Davies Amphitheater July 9. Well worth the $15 at the door. And it’s a beautiful place, too. Perfect even if it’s hot outside.

It’s a humid, hot day in Nebraska. So glad the show didn’t get rained/stormed/tornadoed out last night. Figure out what your dreams are and follow them! They could lead you somewhere fantastic! I’m making time to get back to mine, and I’m much better when I’m creating. Gonna be a great week! See you tomorrow.