Nicaragua - Day 6 - Leon / Nagarote / Realizations

I combine my two passions pretty much all of the time.

When I’m in Mexico, I’m working with people, but I’m also teaching and performing music. Same goes for the Reservation in South Dakota.

When I’m on tour I’m talking about Simply Smiles and sharing stories about folks from our projects.

Very rarely do I go somewhere and just work (traveling without a guitar would feel like traveling without an arm).

Equally as rarely, do I have a concert that’s just a concert. A night of music - no stories or social justice songs. It would seem weird not to try to raise awareness and kindness for fellow human beings.

So this trip to Nicaragua is hard for me in a way, because I’m here only to work on music.

I’m not serving anyone any meals. 

I’m not building any homes.

I’m just working on music.

I’m just working on music.

Last night, I had a little bit of a moment where I wondered what the value was in this.

As I was having my mini-crisis, I tried to distract myself by checking some emails.

I happened to see an email from one my students, and opened it right away. She had been working hard on learning one of her favorite songs by ear, had finally figured it out, and sent me a video of her accomplishment.

I immediately felt better.


I immediately felt better.

That’s what music does.

It connects us.

It is an exchange between people with a chance to say…

I see you.

You matter.

You deserve to hear, see, and feel something beautiful today.

I’m not here ‘just’ making music. 

I’m here making music. Period.

I’m making beautiful music with and for a community that deserves to hear and create something wonderful.

And that’s what we’ve been doing each day.

And that’s something I can be proud of.

Smile! In 1...

Smile! In 1...