Mindful Music, interview with Sherry Finzer

This was a recent interview with Sherry Finzer, feel free to listen or read below!

Welcome to the within the musician podcast this show is a place of discovery for students, performers, educators, and future educators. My name is Monica Williams. I’m a flutist teaching artists recording artist, performer and lifelong learner. Join me and my guests each week as we explore why music matters. We talk about the struggles and the triumphs. But above all, we draw inspiration from one another as we explore ways to make ourselves happier, and healthier human beings. I’m super excited to have my next guest on the show. Her name is Sherry fencer. She is a dear friend of mine, and I asked her to come by to talk about New Age, music, what it is, and why it has the power to heal. And right now more than ever, I think we could all use a little healing. On this episode, we’re going to talk about what new music is, but also what mindfulness is and how music can help us be more mindful. Before I bring Sherry on, let me tell you a little bit more about her. She is the owner of heart dance Records, which happens to be the label that my music is on. Sherry also is a flutist, and she specializes in low flutes, alto, bass, contra bass and many Native American flutes. And she has recorded 27 New Age and contemporary instrumental CDs, and a ton of singles. And she’s one of the founders of the mindful Music Association. So I am going to bring Sherry on and welcome Sherry.

SF

sherry finzer

1:37

Thank you so much for having me. Wow. Dan, really record 27. So

MW

Monica Williams

1:43

that’s what it says on your website? I you know, I was I was curious, because I knew it’s been a ton of like, 27. That’s amazing. That sounds like a lot. But

SF

sherry finzer

1:53

yeah, I’ve done so many collaborations I lose track? Well, yeah,

MW

Monica Williams

1:57

it’s it’s, it seems like you’re always releasing stuff, I wouldn’t doubt at all that it was 27. It is you’re you’re you’re just a machine of music in a good way, not a machine, but you’re producing stuff all the time. So we also have the same kind of similar type of classical backgrounds. Can you tell me a little bit about how you started from your classical background and how you got into New Age music?

SF

sherry finzer

2:26

Yeah. And so like many of us, there was a day in elementary school where we can sign up to be in bands, and have the opportunity to go and look at the instruments and try the instruments. And I knew as soon as I saw the flute, that that was my instrument, there was no other instrument I wanted to try the flute was it. took it home. I had lessons, of course, in school, but I was just playing all the time. I just loved it. And I remember I started in fifth grade. And at the end of fifth grade, we had a spring band concert. And the the band director had asked me if I would play a solo and I was taking private lessons. So I guess this was actually in sixth grade. So after two years of playing, I was playing a Handel Sonata at a band concert in sixth grade. So that’s how much I loved it. And that’s how much I practiced. And at the time it for me, it was escape, I think. And I didn’t really realize that till much later in my adult years that music was therapy for me way back then. But again, like many of us, I went through taking private lessons and being in bands and orchestras to school, competing for, you know, area, all state and all county and all state and all those, those wonderful things that we do as classically trained people. And I put the flute away Actually, I decided to not go on with my studies. I decided to get married, raised a family did many different jobs did many volunteer jobs at the schools and I would pull the flute out now and then and I played in some community orchestras but nothing serious. And when my older son Nick started playing trombone in fourth grade, I really really missed playing so that’s when, as an adult, I went back to studying again and taking private lessons. I ended up my my teacher Glenda dippolito was so encouraging and They told me I needed to do a competition in Rochester, in Rochester, New York at the time. They have a flute Association there. And they had an adult category for their competition. So she convinced me I needed to do this competition. And I thought she was crazy, because I hadn’t really studied seriously and so long. And a lot had happened to me. between high school, and I think this was the year 2000, I went back to studying seriously. When I was younger, I had terrible stage fright. I had gotten over that by becoming a group exercise teacher. And so when I did this competition, we had to go out on stage. And there was just the three judges sitting there. And it was the first time in my life, I have actually enjoyed playing. And I didn’t care if I won, or lost. I just wanted to go and enjoy playing. And that’s what I did, and ended up winning that. And then I started doing larger competitions, like the national flute Association competitions. And so I was back in

SF

sherry finzer

6:16

doing the classical music again. But in 2005, my husband had a job offer out in Phoenix. So we decided to take that offer. And we moved to Phoenix and I connected with the flute society out here. audition auditioned for many of the community foot choirs, but you know, those positions were all taken. And I couldn’t really work my way into the classical scene out here. And I happened to be teaching at a music studio in our studio called music makers, workshops. And there was a guitarist in the other room. And I would hear him practicing and he would do some jazz, like jazz, some new age music. And so I approached him about playing together and we ended up doing a recording together, which was my first solo recording desert journey way back when, and it was not my own music. It was music composed by Rick flouting, he was on the album, and also Christopher Caliendo so Christopher’s music at the time. So we had done a recording. And I started meeting other musicians and other genres, we were experimenting, and I was working at the YMCA, as a group exercise instructor, and I had done a fundraiser for them, one of one of the attendees bought that desert journey CD. And then she came into one of my classes. And she said, Jerry, I just want to let you know that when I put this music on, and I don’t know what her exact issue was, she told me that her hands shut all the time. I don’t know if it’s Parkinson’s or something else. But she said, I just want to let you know that when I put your CD there, my hands stop shaking, I can write, and I can put my makeup on. So I wanted to let you know that nobody had ever said that to me before about my music or my playing. So I thought, well, this could be really something to explore. How, how powerful can music really be, you know, as a healing tool. So I had recently met john Herrera, who you have worked with on your CDs as well. And he has a recording studio in Phoenix. And, you know, I shared my idea of I would like to create some type of New Age album, but I don’t know how to start, I don’t know, I don’t know what to do. And he said I can help you. So that’s how I got into recording what we call New Age music. And I remember being in the studio the first couple of times and you know, as classical flutists were trained to play really, really fast and play notes within 60 seconds. And this was something completely different. It wasn’t about the notes, it was often about the space between the notes.

SF

sherry finzer

9:17

Mm hmm.

SF

sherry finzer

9:18

And there would be several times I’d be in the studio and he’d say, you’re not getting it. Just go home and think about it. And I’d be mad, you know, like, it’s not me. But once I actually really listened back. I could tell now this isn’t really relaxing and it isn’t really doing what I wanted it to do. So it was a whole learning experience. And I really am so grateful for this journey that I’ve been on to lead me to where I’m at today. And I’m probably you could call me our recording addicts probably.

MW

Monica Williams

9:59

I like that. The recording addict Yes.

SF

sherry finzer

10:01

I just love being in the studio and creating.

10:05

Mm hmm.

SF

sherry finzer

10:06

Yeah.

MW

Monica Williams

10:07

So yeah, you bring me to my next question. You’ve already touched on it a little bit as what is new age music. So I also record new age music and sometimes I struggle with this definition. You know, genres often kind of have parts of one another. How do you describe New Age music to someone that’s coming up like I get classical. I get jazz. What is new age music.

SF

sherry finzer

10:31

I think there’s such it’s such a broad definition, that there’s so many sub genres of New Age. The term New Age started back in the 70s, and 80s. Enya was a very popular New Age artist, David arkenstone. Paul horn, who was a jazz flutist turned New Age flutist back in the day there some people would say that new ages, music where, where it doesn’t fit into any other. But to me, it’s it’s downtempo. It’s music, music, that is more soothing, relaxing, music that can bring the heart rate down, slow the breathing. Today, we call it mindful music.

MW

Monica Williams

11:31

We’re gonna get to that in now.

SF

sherry finzer

11:32

Yeah, yeah, people have tried to move away from the term New Age because it conjures up visions of crystals and, you know,

MW

Monica Williams

11:42

made, you know, in some ways that there is many parts that can pull it, there are elements of classical, there are elements of jazz. But you know, what you’re describing. It’s almost as if this term was created with a purpose of intention for the music, I think that that’s really specific to New Age, you know, the purpose of creating coldness, the real purpose of creating relaxation, the purpose of, of using it in a way that creates mindfulness. And there are classical pieces that can do that. I think that there’s some classical pieces, and many artists have actually even taken classical pieces and re recorded them in a new age style. But the the purpose of New Age music, I think, has like this intention of creating an emotional state that’s very specific, you know, the classical music, you can have this, it can be exciting. It can be, you know, it can be relaxing, but there can be there’s a wide spectrum of, of intentional emotional experiences. So that, you know, I just thought of that, as you were speaking, it’s just it really is a very intentionally focused, emotional experience that we’re after.

SF

sherry finzer

12:50

Yeah, I agree with that. Yeah, I hear from so many people that let me know how my music has helped them. You know, when I create it, I guess my intent is, yes, I wanted to help other people. But I don’t have like a specific intention. I suppose I should back up on that. Because when I recorded with Darren Mahoney, the intention behind our album that we did together transformation was to help people going through chemotherapy because of death experience, because I work cancer survivor, so that that one had did have a specific intent. But in general, you know, I just wanted to help people. And then I hear from so many people in the latest has been people reaching out to me with tinnitus. Now, I would have never thought that flute music would help with tonight is interesting, because my dad lost his hearing very early in the 30s. And he started wearing hearing aids. And he could never come to any of my concerts because he could not listen to the music. Uh huh. He couldn’t listen to me playing the flute because it bothered his hearing aid. So in my mind, I would never think of the flute being helpful for tinnitus, because, because of that experience, I

SF

sherry finzer

14:17

hadn’t.

SF

sherry finzer

14:18

But now that technology has come so far, that they actually have what they call masking programs that people can put on their phone, and they run the music through it, and it goes into their hearing aids is just like, you know, Oh,

MW

Monica Williams

14:35

I didn’t know that. That’s, that’s pretty cool.

SF

sherry finzer

14:37

I’ve learned so much last couple months, so like, really my music can help with tinnitus. That’s awesome.

MW

Monica Williams

14:44

Yeah. It kind of makes sense to me because it is it is calming. And I know that they recommend for that, that you use, you know, noise machines or soothing music to help like, you know, mask that that sounds so and that’s it. It’s much better than a white noise machine to have nice. So yeah, yeah,

SF

sherry finzer

15:04

yeah. So it’s not, it’s, it’s in the background, you know, so it’s running in the background in their heads. So it’s not like they’re actually listening to the notes of it, but they’re using it as, like a white noise.

15:19

Mm hmm.

MW

Monica Williams

15:20

Yeah. That’s very cool. And so that kind of sums up what what a new age music is. I mean, it really is. It’s like you said, it’s so broad and wide to and contemporary music, you know, contemporary instrumental music, which is it can have similar undertone. So that’s a hard one. Those two categories are hard for me, you know, New Age music and contemporary instrumental, they have a lot of similarities because you can.

SF

sherry finzer

15:48

There’s so much music that falls under New Age, like we’re flutists. There’s many pianos solo piano piano with different instrumentation. There are vocalists that are new age like Enya acoustic guitar, there’s even electronic guitarists that are considered New Age because it’s more ambient lighting, john Harris does all the ambient guitar. Mm hmm. There’s just such a wide array of New Age.

MW

Monica Williams

16:24

Right, right. And, you know, I, as a teacher, I’m always, you know, being classically trained. I like there’s, there’s elements of my daily routine and classical that I feel, have the intention of New Age music, for example, long tones, you you mentioned the space between the notes, a long tone is, in many ways, an element of New Age music to make us to make a note travel with intention, and, and, and go somewhere. So you know, that is that is super important and all music, but really, for New Age music, you can take one note and say so much with one note. And, you know, as we both grew up on classical, you know, a lot of times when I was younger, it was just part of the thing like you did long tones. I didn’t think necessarily I didn’t really immerse myself into that experience, which is breath, and exhaling the breath to create sounds that has a purpose. And so I always try and especially now during COVID really expressed that that even long tones are a purpose of like, it’s an it’s you’re creating music, you’re composing music really, right, right. Just doing one note.

SF

sherry finzer

17:43

is amazing. Like, I remember like, I don’t have time to do all I have to play all these scale patterns.

MW

Monica Williams

17:50

Yeah, no, I did them. But I was guilty of, of thinking about so many other things I wasn’t in the moment. And that’s another element of mindfulness. So let’s talk about mindfulness. What is mindfulness? And this is a term I feel like it, I feel like it’s used a lot more maybe it’s just the things that I’ve been following in the my social media tendencies. But this term mindfulness feels like it’s emerging more and more, what is it? What would you tell people? What is mindfulness?

SF

sherry finzer

18:19

Well, I suppose my definition is, to me being mindful is paying attention to yourself, to what’s going on in your mind, to what’s going on in your body. also paying attention to what’s going on around you and other people. I think because, you know, we’re always so busy in our day to day lives. I think, you know, COVID has changed that a lot. I think people are now taking more time for themselves to be mindful. I know when it first started, and everything was going on lockdown. Like I actually started cooking again, you know. I’m like, wow, I forgot forgotten how to cook. I’d forgotten how good food can actually taste when you make it at home. And so I think it’s just being aware. I know a lot of people use meditation, yoga, coming back to the breath. A lot of that a lot throughout the day. As you know, tensions may build it’s sometimes I just have to take a moment and say, okay, just step away for a little bit, right.

MW

Monica Williams

19:48

I like your example of cooking because I think that at least some of the people that I’ve talked to when I think of mindful they think of the meditation and that’s sometimes hard to do to sit in complete silence. And you can have mindful moments all the time, right the cooking you can feel the you can feel the vegetables, you can really be mindful in chopping the vegetables, you can be breathing as you do it, it’s in the experience rather than multitasking a zillion things which I’m guilty of.

SF

sherry finzer

20:20

I’m walking the dog, it’s, you know, I try to look at the flowers and the trees and the birds and the trees and try to notice things that I may have neglected noticing before because I was always in such a rush.

MW

Monica Williams

20:36

And like that idea, like you can be mindfully walking to mindfully that’s the thing, you know, mindful walking, and, and take the time to do all five senses. So that’s the meditation that I like, it’s not really meditation, backtrack, that. It’s an experience that my therapist encourages me to do, because it’s taking account of the mindfulness. So like, look at three things, smell three things, taste three things, you know, so we’re one thing and then it gets you in out of your head and out of thoughts and into the moment so that you can be presence and audio and grounded and you use the the idea of breath. That’s a really that’s you don’t wear a wind instrument, but you know that the idea of breath is an anchor, but music, I think, how do you feel about this, like music, I feel like it’s almost an anchor, if you needed one, if you were working on being more mindful. And I think that’s back to what you’re saying about healing. That’s kind of the, the idea is that you can be grounded in breath, but also grounded in sound. And that helping the the sound helping you reduce your heart rate and get into the moment, mindfulness.

SF

sherry finzer

21:49

While we were talking that I’ve been doing a lot of live streaming, and just meditative music, I call a call what I do flute meditations. And, and I always say in those live streams that this is therapy for me, also to be here doing this for you, is therapy for me, like maybe I’ve had a stressful day. And this is going to lower my heart rate. You know, to play the flute, you have to be in control of your breath. Yeah. instrument. Mm hmm.

MW

Monica Williams

22:22

And that’s the insight timer app that Sherry is referencing, which is its purpose is to help with meditation, right to meditate, meditation and mindfulness. And, yeah, it’s just live streams, which is awesome.

SF

sherry finzer

22:35

Yeah. When do you do those? Well, they have started with guided meditations. And it’s branched out into many other things. There’s, there’s yoga on there. There’s music on there, I have music on there. And they started doing live streaming this summer. So if anybody wants to catch me on there, you can go to insight timer.com and follow me. And then you should get a notification when I livestream but I’ve been trying to be on twice a week. This week, I was on Tuesday morning. And last night, next week, I chose two evenings. And I mix it up. And what is so cool about that is there are people from all over the world. So if I’m streaming in the morning, here, it’s like evening in Australia, you know. And so there’s just, I’ve made connections with so many people from all over the world. And being on that platform. It’s such a great loving and caring community. And I feel like they’ve all become part of my family. I have regulars that are there for every live stream, and it’s just like, Hey, how are you? Yeah. And it’s been a great experience. So if anybody’s interested in meditating, you don’t have to go there to listen to me or my music, but it’s a great place to start. If you’ve never done any meditation. There’s Yes, from two minute meditations to, you know, an hour long meditations,

MW

Monica Williams

24:05

right for everyone. And I’ll put that in the Episode Notes too. So if you didn’t catch that, as well as some other places to follow Sherry always look in the Episode Notes, we’ll we’ll get that there. So that’s that’s like a good definition of mindfulness. Now, I know that you’re also one of the founders of the mindful Music Association, MMA, which always makes me think of mixed martial arts but like, I like the music better. Tell us about that. What your what’s, what’s up with that group? And what’s your intention? And I know that they have an opportunity for people that are doing New Age music to be on a compilation. So tell us about that.

SF

sherry finzer

24:48

Well,

SF

sherry finzer

24:48

the mindful Music Association was started by myself, Andy metron, and LG tour. A few years ago we had all met via the zone music reporter awards, which is a music chart for New Age music. They have an award show every year in New Orleans,

SF

sherry finzer

25:11

and I want to go back,

SF

sherry finzer

25:15

we made so many great connections with people there. So we were just looking for a way to expand upon what they had started and start trying to help spread the word about how this music can be used. It can be used in classrooms, it can be used by yoga instructors, you know, meditation centers. So many, so many people. And I think, you know, we were first trying to target teachers to use this music in the classroom. And then that’s when COVID hit. But we have brought about some live concerts. We had a big symposium a few months ago, where we had workshops on music and healing, we had music therapists on, we had some business type classes for musicians. So it’s not open to just musicians, it’s open to anybody interested in this style of music, mindful music. And so our next project is a compilation that’ll be released, I think we’re shooting for May. If there’s anybody out there, that creates this type of music downtempo, slow, spacious, healing music, and is interested in being on that compilation, there is a way to submit the music, and it goes through a committee for approval. And if anybody wants to information on that, they can visit the mindful Music Association website. So mindful Music Association calm, and you can just send an email through there. If they want to follow us on Instagram and Facebook. I know they’ve been posting information about the cost.

MW

Monica Williams

27:11

And I’ll put those on the Episode Notes too. So that that would be a good opportunity. What about teachers? So I know that that was like, one of the initial missions, a lot of people are teaching still, I mean, California is still in shutdown. And everyone’s doing their own thing. Every state is doing their own thing. Don’t get me started. But what about teachers that might be looking for some activity? That includes mindfulness, which I think is super needed right now? Can they get ahold of your music? Or the music of the organizations to use in their? And how would they go about doing that? Is it Spotify playlist? Or is what would be easily accessible for teaching teachers to use in the classroom to help with mindfulness?

SF

sherry finzer

27:56

Yes, the first compilation we put together a better life is available on all streaming services, Spotify, apple, music, Amazon, it’s also on Bandcamp, we do have physical CDs, if anybody’s interested in that, and we’re happy to just give those away to any teachers or therapists or

MW

Monica Williams

28:20

so I’ll put the information on that. But I think, you know, the idea of bringing mindfulness into the classroom, which is now you know, someone’s home and it really does take a lot more, a little bit more focus or work to be present, when you have a lot of distractions. You know, I think this is what I’ve been hearing and seeing from a lot of students, you know, when you’re in a classroom, you know, the teacher has control of the environment. When you are in your own home, you don’t have control of the students environment. So you know, to help students become mindful and take some some time out to just sit there and listen to music or listen to a music, music with a video, bring in some maybe some guided imagery into it, I think it’d be really nice to include if teachers aren’t including it, so hopefully, there’ll be someone up there that will take you up on that.

SF

sherry finzer

29:17

Yeah, because originally we you know, teachers were in classrooms when we started years ago, and I honestly, I don’t know how they’re doing it. I don’t know how they’re able to control a classroom via zoom. I

MW

Monica Williams

29:35

just, it’s hard i think that you know, it’s it’s, it’s it’s hard but you’ve I think you learn a long way sister teaches kindergarten so I hear some of the I hear some of the stories of siblings coming in and the things that you have to say in order to, you know, to get control of your classroom like no don’t bring your computer into the bathroom with you, you know, things like that, that are like

SF

sherry finzer

29:58

what I’ve even heard some people Say, you know, they want my kid to sit in front of this computer for you know, so many hours is not going to happen. You know, I’m gonna let my kid get up and wander he’s not gonna sit there for him. And I just then how do the teachers even teach?

SF

sherry finzer

30:19

Yeah, yeah, I

MW

Monica Williams

30:21

think they’re doing a great job. But I think that, you know, I talked about this in some of the other episodes that I think that it’s made a lot of us better teachers because it got it shook things up to the core like you, you have to reimagine your teaching. And a lot of the things that I learned as a, you know, a music instructor will carry through to in person teachings because I was forced to do things differently. Well, I really liked this element of it. So for if teachers are listening and haven’t included mindfulness, and you hadn’t thought of it, maybe this would be a good thing to, or an activity that goes along with music, I think that that would be really helpful. So hopefully,

SF

sherry finzer

31:01

yeah, a lot of people use this music, while they’re studying, you know, it’s can be just used as background music.

MW

Monica Williams

31:09

Yeah. And I know, even teachers are in high school groups, they’re putting students in, you know, breakout rooms, just with an activity, I don’t think you can do music just only in that breakout room, you know, for to help the students that want some sounds, to help them focus and tune in and be mindful to what is going on in the class. versus your own environment. If you have siblings around and, and parents working and, you know, let people a lot a lot more people in the home these days to cut due to the to the situation.

SF

sherry finzer

31:43

Yeah. And I’d be interested, if anybody has ideas on how we can reach out to teachers now that are teaching online, you know, in a mass quantity. Yeah, yeah, as a way to do that. So it’s not, you know, trying to reach out to one at a time, not that we can’t do that, but which is that’s just very time consuming. or some type of organization we might reach out to, that would be interested in using this music or getting it out to the teachers, that would be very helpful.

MW

Monica Williams

32:16

Yeah, that sounds like so I’ll put your your email and contact and Episode Notes as well. So if anyone has ideas, they can, they can reach out to you. So you also have created a record label heart dance records. And can you tell us why you started started this and, and your experience with that?

SF

sherry finzer

32:38

Yeah, it kind of goes along with the, you know, my whole journey of trying to help others is it and then label just started out with my own music for a few years. And, you know, I there was just a time after being at the zone music reporter awards, I just decided we need more of this music and our world. More people need to hear this music. People are stressed out kids are stressed out what can I do to help so this, this was my idea of, of helping by creating this label with other artists who have, you know, similar desires and want their music to help others. So it has just grown over the years, it’s been a lot of work, but it’s very satisfying, very, very satisfying. To know that not only my music, but the music of others on the label like yours is being used by so many people around the world.

33:46

Mm hmm.

MW

Monica Williams

33:47

That’s awesome. And you know, I think that I was reminded of an episode that we did earlier in the season with Katherine Emma net, who talked about being a portfolio musician and that you are you are the the you know, a great example of that to diversify your income streams right now by recording and teaching performing you know, all of those, all of those streams I think that that’s as artists if we’re to prevail during this time, I think it’s important to to really think outside of you what you normally did especially performing artist if you’re performing and you hadn’t thought about recording as an income stream, you know, to be thinking about that. So because that’s that’s your you’re really good at what you do and I also think about like the the upbringing that you had in terms of, you know, the classical and then into the new age and and all the jobs like the YMCA you mentioned all of those are really important because they don’t teach you business and music. They do not teach you how to to live as an artist and while while the intention and we’re very similar this way is to bring And to bring bring that you still have to put food on the table you still have to be able to create otherwise there’s there’s no there’s there’s no means for that. So I like that, you know, you you found and you’re helping artists finds income streams and ways to get their music out there so that they can create more music so they can go in higher producers like john Herrera ends and creates and and bring more music to the to the worlds, right?

SF

sherry finzer

35:32

Yeah, I’ve never been one to put all my eggs in one basket as they say.

SF

sherry finzer

35:40

But then sometimes I overcome it because I have so many so many things spinning at once. But yeah, I recently met a musician who lives here in the Phoenix area who moved here from New York City about a year ago, and he was just strictly a performing musician. So I was talking about like, you know, why don’t you record? Well, there’s no money, you can’t make any money. There’s no money in streaming? Well, there can be but it’s it’s work, you know, like anything else to get your music out there and get it heard? Some people just, I don’t know, they don’t try it. Yeah,

MW

Monica Williams

36:23

it’s not going to that, if you’re looking at as a sole means, again, with the diversifying your income stream that that would not be quite so smart. But it can be one channel of it. And it is possible. It is possible.

SF

sherry finzer

36:38

Yeah. There’s, there’s so many baskets that, you know, there’s just a little money here and a little money there and a little money there. But it all adds up in the end. And yeah, so, um, you know, I enjoy helping artists. And a lot of people don’t know where to collect their royalties from. So I, I’ve always been one to, to enjoy helping others. Since my kids were a little you know, I volunteered in the schools on the PTA, and all that stuff, band boosters, all that stuff. I just, that’s just my personality, I guess is to always want to help people.

MW

Monica Williams

37:18

And you do a great job at it. How many artists do you have under the heart? her dance records now how many What are we up to?

SF

sherry finzer

37:26

The last time I actually counted? We were over 50. But I bet we’re approaching 60. Right now. We’re bringing 1234 new artists on in this first quarter of this. Wow. Yeah.

MW

Monica Williams

37:42

And I’ll put the website link there. There’s lots of great music. And I think you have links to artists and where to find other people. So yeah, so I’ll link that there. And then you know, this, as I mentioned in the intro notes, this whole series of podcasts really has a lot to do with why music matters. And I think we touched a lot on that why music matters. We need healing, we need this. But now we’re in a time and we’ll talk about the performing arts of this run a time where Performing Arts, although you’ve been doing some performing I’m going to ask you about that is is you know, hard to get to into Broadway as closed as and we know all these things. Why does music matter? More than ever?

SF

sherry finzer

38:31

Well,

SF

sherry finzer

38:33

the healing aspect of music, it can help with healing, it can bring joy, it can help you release pent up emotions. Sometimes you just need to have a good cry, you know, maybe there’s a particular song that you hear that will help trigger that.

SF

sherry finzer

38:51

But

SF

sherry finzer

38:53

I mean, we’re losing the arts for sure, by having all these places closed down. It’s very sad. It’s very sad to see this. I really hope it comes back. You know, who knows what the future holds. But Gosh, this has been such a devastating year for the arts. It has

MW

Monica Williams

39:18

it has. My hope is is that by having the absence of so many things like live performances, like going out to eat the simple luxuries that hopefully it’ll be valued a little bit more if people don’t you know, I think that we get to take it for granted that you can go and out for a dinner and a show and and have the arts or go to a museum and and just by having it removed from the at least the live perspective. You can hear the recorded streaming. Hopefully it’ll make people value that more and hopefully they’ll go through support that

SF

sherry finzer

39:58

way. I hope so. I think Help they don’t forget. People can so easily forget, you know. And I just hope we don’t get used to doing everything online for the rest of our lives that we can go out and socialize again someday. and gather and go to these shows and go to these concerts.

MW

Monica Williams

40:21

And you actually brought the music literally outside tell us what you did. Early pandemic and I think you’ve kept to Phoenix is probably not that you’re not you don’t get cold. He you’re not.

SF

sherry finzer

40:33

But not as cold as hell.

SF

sherry finzer

40:35

Yeah.

MW

Monica Williams

40:38

So tell us what you’ve what you’ve been doing in terms of live performing? I know you did. You’ve been doing some stuff in your neighborhood. But you also did one with will clipman. And that was pretty cool, socially distance thing. Tell us about that.

SF

sherry finzer

40:52

When everything started shutting down, and I was trying to figure out what, what can I do, I can’t go anywhere. But you know, what can I do to use my music to help others. So I basically just set up in my driveway, and my streets kind of a busy street, it’s like, you know, 25 miles per hour. So it’s not, you know, it’s not a highway, but there’s, there’s traffic line. And let me just set up in my driveway, bring my son system out there, and I’m gonna just play, and my neighbors would hear and they pull their chairs out and sit in their driveway. And then we’re kind of spread around, and then more people would come in their little golf carts and park or, you know, pull up in their cars and put the windows down. And listen, they got to be where I was putting signs outside. The next time I was going to play. People wanted to know, so I just got those, like driving driveway concerts. And then when, like, they said, No, no more gatherings of 10 people or more, I decided I couldn’t do that anymore. Because I didn’t, you know, I didn’t want to cause anybody to catch COVID of course. I mean, people say it’s pretty spread out. But I just got a little worried. So I stopped doing that. And I actually had a tour planned in June with equipment. And we had like five dates. And they were all originally indoor concerts. And three of our hosts were able to change that to us being able to play outdoors. So we’re able to salvage that. We did a show with Gary Schmitt, up in Lakewood, Colorado, we played on somebody’s stack in front of a small lake and people are just spread out on the lawn. So there are ways to make it work. And then in the summer here, it gets very hot, so it’s too hot to play outside. It’s kind of like the seasons. I explained it that way. Like when you’re back east, you stay inside in the winter, we stay inside in the summer, because it’s just too hot. And then I had this idea to bring concerts out to the neighborhood again when the weather cooled down. So now I call them cul de sac concert. So we look for streets where there’s a call to sack and we try to find a host somebody that lives in the cul de sac to host and let us plug in our sound system. And they don’t really have to do anything but just let us plug in their sound system and of course we have to keep some space open for vehicles to get in or emergency vehicles to get in there. If that was ever necessary, but people just come and they they either walk and stand and listen or they bring lawn chairs and they straight. So I did one Darren Mahoney and I did two of them November in December I think and we probably had 50 people there and we just put out a you know a bucket of people want to donate and a lot of people are very generous in giving money and bottles of wine to those are always very appreciated. So those have worked well. It’s been cold you know, the holidays came we did. We did a concert I think the first weekend of December. And we haven’t done another one since because that way cold to us is anything under 80. But no it’s been like in the 40s and 50s. So it’s been a little bit cool to play outside, but I’m hoping what equipment and I will probably do it Pretty soon now that it looks like it’s gonna start warming up a little bit.

MW

Monica Williams

45:04

That’s awesome. You know, I love that you found a way to actually keep live music going. And I know that I was at one of Sherry’s house concerts, which was very cool. You know, that’s very hard right now during COVID. But it’s pretty much like a house concert, but I’m not in a house. That is, is

SF

sherry finzer

45:22

endo are so appreciate of. Thank you so much for doing this. Like, we haven’t been to hear any live music, you know? Yes. So if you can find a way to do it outdoors, your neighbors will love you, they will love you. They really well.

MW

Monica Williams

45:40

That’s pretty cool. And, you know, like I was talking with a student recently, I think that just that experience of something different in your day can really help someone because although this was a long year had this conversation with a high school student, it seemed almost as if to her, that it was just a blurb like one day bred into the other day went into the other day without the activities and the different environments and such. So you know, just experiencing an event that’s just slightly different can can bring structure and bring some some new experience and and energy to someone. So that’s, that’s really great that

SF

sherry finzer

46:21

it gives people something to look forward to.

MW

Monica Williams

46:25

Great, and that’s great advice. So my next question was going to be like, what advice do you have for artists during this time? I think that that’s a great piece of advice, which is, if there’s a way for you to to continue doing your, your live music in some form, whether it be and I know you do a lot of you know, even Facebook, live streams, a lot of people started that, you know, just to share your music or with another person.

SF

sherry finzer

46:52

Yeah, I was listening to your podcast with Teresa. And she was she was doing the nursing homes. Mm hmm. That is another way I I had just started playing live in the nursing homes last January and February, I remember. Yeah. And then they had somebody who was trying to do the live streams, through zoom, it just, it may work for other instruments, but it just does not work for the flute. So I could never make that happen. So I did, I’d be interested in finding out how Teresa did that what platform they use for that. But if you can find a way to do that, oh my gosh, those senior residents, they would eat up the music, it doesn’t matter if you play Twinkle, twinkle little star, they will. They will love anything that you play.

MW

Monica Williams

47:49

Right? I actually have a high school student arhaan you know him as an intern for you a little bit. But he is doing that. He’s been doing that for years, actually. And he continued it with with zoom. But here’s the thing is that it was a little bit of music, and it’s a lot of conversation. So you know, talking about the music and you know, just getting people to to see something different in their day and add structure to it. I think the the senior resident definitely being No, might not be the best

1

Speaker 1

48:23

musical delivery of a of it with the equipment and platform, but

SF

sherry finzer

48:29

they don’t care. They just love to have somebody to talk to. And they love any kind of music really they do.

48:38

Yes. Well,

MW

Monica Williams

48:39

that’s awesome. So speaking of music, I at the beginning played a little bit of Sherry’s music and I’m gonna play a lot of what you’re hearing right now is a little Sherry’s music. And you can find Sherry fencers music, any platform. So just type her music into any platform, and you’ll bring you one of the 27 CDs that you had, has played.

SF

sherry finzer

49:00

I’m going to put

MW

Monica Williams

49:01

all of her links so that you can follow her for both the music, the mindful Music Association, heart dance records, insight timer, as well as her website. So check her out, and we’ll have to have her on I would love to have you on at some point to talk about more the business end of the label. Sure. I think it’ll be a different a different episode. So I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s show. And if you would like Share, Subscribe and review that would help us be recognized on more platforms and until next week. Bye bye.

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