By Gail Dreifus
After two years of keeping my passion, Yosemite Songwriting Retreat, going on Zoom for four retreats, we will be LIVE in October! Although I was getting used to seeing and hearing people in their “Zoom box,” I am excited to be live (although a little cautious) for our tenth anniversary Yosemite Songwriting Retreat in Mariposa, located at The Grove House. While moving forward, we’re also reviewing notes and photographs from past years. Two plus years ago there were no masks, we were not six feet apart, and we had huge smiles singing close together. I sense a longing for our community to be in person, sharing meals and new songs.
What about my own music? For two years I played solo in the comfort of my home, and was not reaching out to play gigs, or dressing up and carrying sound systems. During that time, I started the weekly Yosemite Songwriting Retreat Online Open Mic, inviting people from all over the states and Canada have a get together every Wednesday night. Now I am back at it with a new duo, “Home Tonight.” This duo includes me on guitar and vocals and my life partner, David Budries, on piano and vocals. The themes of my songs have changed to reflect a more positive outlook on life. David and I have started collaborating on songs and this, too, is new for me, and a lot of fun!
I started recording a new CD right when the pandemic started. Joe Craven is producing it and much of our planning was done on Zoom with hopes of trying to get back into the studio. It will be finished soon and to my delight it is a reflection of my old songs before the pandemic and “Home Tonight.”
In reflection, life’s lemonade has taught me to make the best of the pandemic time and re-create my music, personal life and choices. This gives me something to sing about!
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