I have just wrapped up a busy two-week vacation. We never left the state, but there was plenty here to do. The first week was divided between going to exhibits and events for the National Black Arts Festival, and taking my kids to their chosen day camps.
For my daughter, that meant her second year at Girls Rock Camp ATL. It is a great organization that teaches girls to play instruments and conducts "workshops geared toward encouraging freedom of expression, self-esteem, and self and community respect."
During the week girls aged 10-16 form bands, write songs and learn to play instruments. It doesn't matter if they've never touched a keyboard or picked up a guitar. By the end of the week, they've learned enough to put on a show at a real concert venue.
During their lunch breaks, they hear local musicians play and discuss their careers in music. One of the musicians they heard play was blues guitarist Beverly "Guitar" Watkins.
She surprised the girls, the staff and the audience by playing at the Saturday showcase.
That 72-year-old woman rocked the house. She moved around that stage like she owned it. She can play the guitar holding it behind her head. No, really, look:
That is a role model for you. Speaking of role models, her back-up band that night consisted of camp staff members.
But the headliner that night (as far as I'm concerned) was my daughter and her band Drenched in Party Poison. (I'm still not sure what that means, the girls choose the names, too)
She was great, all the girls were. She's a perfectionist and she can be hard on herself. But she's already asking for tuners and capos and sheet music to learn. There's no sign she's giving up. Which is good, because I'm already looking forward to next year's show.
Still to come, more art, sports watching and the heat.