Reflections on the New Year

I can’t lie to you. 2015 was a pretty rough year for the Raison D’Etre family. In a line of pretty rough years beginning in 2013. Yet, somehow, we kept singing.  I could list for you all the life events that did not go as we would have hoped, but frankly, since I live with(or near) those realities every day, I do not need to be reminded.  To quote Jackson Browne:


Don’t confront me with my failures.

I have not forgotten them.

And certainly, I would not classify most of the hurdles fate has thrown in our path as failures. They are more accurately described as challenges. And everybody gets their share of challenges somewhere along the path.


I picked up this little card at my last yoga session for 2015. Every year our teacher brings in some inspirational cards for her students to pick up randomly on the way out the door.  Mine is below.  I didn’t think much about it when I picked it up, but it is an excellent meditation for the new year.


I rejoice in what I have…

1. In 2015 Raison D’Etre was able to perform at some wonderful events and venues:


SWAN DAY 2015 with Ma Crow and the Lady Slippers at Women Writing for (a) Change organized by Women’s Way of OH/KY

Live@Lunch at Christ Cathedral

New Friends Luncheon Concert at the Syndicate

We played for the PIRA 501 reunion in Northern Kentucky—paratroopers from WWII and their proud families.

Violet and Roberta hosted a showcase room at SERFA in North Carolina and showcased in two others. Roberta served as Co-Director of the SERFA Conference for 2015 and continued her role as “guerrilla showcase wrangler.”

Violet and Roberta played at set of Roberta’s originals at 3rd Friday Folk in Somerset, KY

Violet and Roberta took a dulcimer workshop from Lorinda Jones at Berea’s Learnshops in July.

The trio continued to play several dates at College Hill Coffee Company(our favorite coffee establishment.)

We played at Brighton Center’s joyous community celebration in Newport.

We sang as cowgirls for six weekends at the Old West Festival in Ohio.

We showcased at Kentucky Arts Council’s Master Class event in October.

Roberta took her solo show “The Story Behind the Song” to Coffeyville, KS for three days.

Violet and Roberta did a “Christmas Belles” tour of Creative Aging venues for December. 

We performed our Christmas tunes and other selections at Kentucky’s most beautiful gift shop, the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea.

Vickie joined us for “Singing, Swinging New Year” at Bethel Woods.

We continued our caroling role at Horizon Community Church’s 8 inspiring Christmas Eve services as a cappella carolers.

We collaborated with Falcon Theatre and Campbell County Library on a sold-out production of “Twain by the Tale.”


I know that fresh new experiences are always ahead…

We are already booked for Bayley Place’s New Year’s Eve celebration for 2016.  That made us giggle with delight since they do a proper balloon drop the day before at around 2:30 pm.

We are very excited to be providing the music for Falcon Theatre/Campbell County Public Library’s Signature Series Event, “Many-Storied House” on January 15 at 7 pm. This is a reader’s theatre adaptation of Kentucky Poet Laureate George Ella Lyon’s poignant poetry collection about her childhood home. The poet will be in attendance for a book signing and has contributed an original song called “Lineage” to the production.


We have two tracks on the current volume of Acoustic Rainbow Sampler, sent out to over 1200 roots/folk Djs world-wide.  They are just beginning to report back to the Sampler crew.


We continue to place songs with Women of Substance Radio for the upcoming Valentine’s show and the weekly podcasts.


I greet the new with open arms…

Roberta is part of the Kohler Dementia Project to bring music to nursing home residents who would not normally be able to attend regularly scheduled music programs.  This program is administered by Creative Aging Cincinnati with the generous donations from the Kohler Family. Roberta visits Alois Alzheimer Center monthly, as does Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra violinist, Stacey Woolley. 


I trust life to be wonderful…

Honestly, we are never happier than when we are singing. Even in the face of some very challenging circumstances, music takes us to a better place, the golden still point where life truly happens.



Happy 2016 to you. Here’s hoping our paths cross in the year ahead.