Songs in the Key of Amy

(via Purple Clover) by Jess Tardy

The casting call found its way to me by email, a strange, urgent request from a booking agent who’d previously altogether ignored me. A beautiful young woman was planning her memorial service, he wrote. She was just weeks, if not days, from her death, and she wished for the story of her life to be told through a series of her favorite songs, and for those songs to be sung by an Eva Cassidy-ish singer.

I’d recently returned to Boston from a doomed stint in Nashville. A development deal with a major label went south, and I fled north with my hat in my hand. I joined a wedding band upon my return and was promptly fired for refusing to sing a Destiny’s Child cover. I sulked at a copyediting job by day and played a few divey gigs singing sad Dinah Washington songs by night. I was bummed out and broke, the subject of me and my tanked music career a sore one, my future a big, hazy question mark. Even 1,100 miles from Music Row, I felt surrounded by singer-songwriter types bent on making it, frenetically promoting shows and breathlessly extolling their latest recording projects. They made me tired. I didn’t see the point in singing, for fun or profit. I didn’t have the heart for it anymore.

When the agent offered me the memorial service performance, I took it anyway. It was a sad way to make rent, but beggars can’t be choosers. I assumed it would be just another weird, unfulfilling rent gig on my resume, like the time I sang the national anthem at a near-deserted horse track. Nothing I’d ever want to tell anyone about, and certainly not a game changer…

Read more: http://www.purpleclover.com/relationships/3849-songs-key-amy/

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. sweedheart
    Apr 02, 2017 @ 21:20:44

    Very touching and inspiring!

    Reply

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