Me in 1993
I miss the music. I miss being center stage, belting out notes and lyrics from my gut and being able to scream out my angst and praise in front of hundreds of people.
It started in 1991, with Elisha's Bones. My first experience with being in a Christian rock band...the music and vocals were lacking in experience but we had so much fun together. We loved sharing the gospel through our music and I met so many people that are still a daily part of my life today.
1993...I started singing with guitar accompaniment...Pretty Irene was me and Jon Ragel, The Whittix was me and Matt Kropf (Wakefield) and a song or two with Tim Eurich. Mikee Bridges recruited Matt and me for his joke band, The Dickens. So much FUN.
In 1993, I started hanging out with my now husband, Chris Collins, and we were in a band with his brother, Kevin and Kevin's wife, Linda, called St. Worthless. Kevin wrote amazing 4 part harmonies and it was like Tom Petty and Brian Wilson with girls. Melodic and lovely.
In 1995, I became the Administrative Assistant to Mikee Bridges and his newest creation, TOM Fest. The first year, in WA, it was 40 + bands, camping, art, etc...and as the years went by, it grew into a 150+ bands, 5 stages, tons of vendors and more. In 1998, Dallas, TX and Denver, CO were added to the venue. So we had 3 TOMs that year. It was a lot of work, but I loved every second of it. I was saturated in the Christian music scene...punk, emo, rock, thrash, metal...it was totally my thing.
Mikee in 2008
1995, Gifty began. Chris' high school friends, Ben Sims and Ben Rickard and Rickard's little brother Steve and I were fans of bands like Jawbox, U2, Fugazi and Starflyer 59, and began an "emo" project that became the love of my musical tinkering. We played for about 3 years and then reunited in 2006 for a show at Stevenson, WA's "X-Fest."
In 2000, The Company began recording. I got to be BGV's for my talented friends, Bryan Everett & Kristen Burns, to the music of the 70's and early 80's - Disco. This project was so fun and it's sad we never did anything great with it. We were on BEC's label and had possible distribution through EMI and whoops...Someone pissed off BEC and after the CDs were made, they were never distributed, except to Christian bookstores as their discount mucic. Such a shame, too, since the album was something like $15,000 to record with an actual orchestra and killer vocals and beats. Flannery loves the album and she and I listen to it a lot in the car!
In 2001, I gave birth to Flannery and was pretty sure the music thing was over. But, I was able to join the worship team at church, which gave me joy, and then the 2006 show with Gifty was a total gift, as I was yearning to play again.
Intertwined since 1998 has been The Shoot Girls. A comedy/music team led by my dear friend, Kristen and myself. There are other "players" as well - Rhonda, Stewart Ramsey, Zordon, Cookie...but it involves a straight face and acting like an idiot and it's such an escape for us. We're in the process of writing 20 songs for a recording we hope to have done in the Summer of 2011. It's far from serious, but it's something I can believe in, because I love comedy and being silly and singing. No stress, just laughs with dear friends. We began a podcast a few years ago with interviews, in character and it was a blast. If I lived closer to Bryan (a.k.a. Rhonda) it might be easier.