Monday, March 11, 2019

A Story of Art Inspiring Music

"Field of Dreams" I took this photo on the side of a country road in Wisconsin while on a drive with my husband.
 High contrast black and white applied in editing
Kurt Gunn - "Regarding Little Girls"

Admittedly, the post is late but I had to take some time to process one of the coolest moments I have experienced through art.

On Saturday, March 9th Kurt Gunn released a solo album called Northern Town inspired by the image above.  The release party was at the Rock Garden Studio in Appleton, WI. Christopher Gold opened for him. On a very wintery evening Kurt performed to a full house sharing his music and his heart and soul. As I listened to his incredibly insightful lyrics on songs such as "House at the Bottom of the Hill" and "Broken Things" tears were brought to me eyes.  Through his songs, Kurt was showing us the man behind the music. A man who holds so much love for his wife and family. A humble man who sometimes experiences doubt and anxiety just like so many of us. Because it is acoustic with Kurt playing on either the guitar or piano we were able to really concentrate on what he was sharing with us. The Rock Garden Studio atmosphere was the perfect venue to perform.  The acoustics are incredible and there is a shared understanding that you are there to listen. Wine and beer were provided but it was all about the music.  This created a spell where the audience was transported into Kurt's music and lyrics.

What makes this even more special to me is that before he started he informed the audience that this album wouldn't exist if I hadn't given him this picture.  It all started at Featherwolf's album release party at Gibson last February. They invited me to show some of my art so I chose my collectible mini-art prints and the Songs Series.  Kurt was also playing that night as one of the opening acts. Because he and his wife Kimberly are friends of mine and because he was supporting my friends Sam and Shaun I invited him to pick out one of the prints as a gift for his wife who was at home with the kids. He chose the one in the lower left hand corner of the table shown in the photo below.

Two weeks later I saw him at a different event and asked how did she like it?  That's when he informed me that he hadn't given it to her because he was writing an album using the photo as inspiration and had it hanging where he writes! I was so dumbfounded that I actually thought he was pulling my leg at first.  My goal has always been to bring art and music together. The fact that an image of mine inspired a songwriter's music never even occurred to me. I am so thrilled that it did! Kurt Gunn is very respected in the local music industry. A Mile of Music artist that has been nominated 4 times for the WAMI's (he'll win this year for sure with his last album) Kurt is one of the most genuine guys around.  Thank you so much for one of coolest moments in my artistic career! Below is a video my friend Sarah Seehafer captured of Kurt Gunn telling the story of art inspiring music. 

The image is also the album cover!
And on the cd itself!

And on limited edition posters! (photo by Kimberly Gunn)

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