A Country Singer Hits the Stage

In front of a venue on the Urban Fences tour

In front of a venue on the Urban Fences tour

The crowd is in the venue, waiting.

I sit in the car. The sequins on my jacket crunch against the seat. I stare at my phone and open the keyboard app. It’s time for me to warm up my voice.

My nerves are jangled, threatening the calm I am fighting to master. I breathe.

I take a deep breath and trill my lips, ascending and descending a major scale.  

The Paisley Fields with Willie Huston on the Urban Fences Tour 

The Paisley Fields with Willie Huston on the Urban Fences Tour 

I close the car door behind me and cross the dark parking lot.

The door of the venue opens, customers glide by laughing. I flash a quick smile and push past them into the venue. My heart is hammering in my chest. My palms have started to sweat.

Sound check 

Sound check 

I cross the floor to the stage and join the rest of the band. We plug in our instruments and start sound check. I study the set list.

Don’t think too much about the audience.

Don’t get distracted.

Focus on the song.

Focus on the moment.

Focus on the performance.

Breathe.

I hit the first chord. My nerves melt, as the stage lights wash my face.

I am in the moment, and I am alive. 

The Paisley Fields with Willie Huston and friends on the Urban Fences tour. 

The Paisley Fields with Willie Huston and friends on the Urban Fences tour.