A great club should be like a musical university. It should host, in a relatively clean friendly and safe environment, a broad variety of shows in varying genres. Over time, one should be able to, simply by virtue of attendance, accumulate a musical education.

I’ve been fortunate over the years to frequent such a number of clubs, Newport’s Southgate House Revival being one of the them. Valerie June’s recent show being a case in point.

I have friends who are ardent fans, though June would normally fall off my musical radar. I just haven’t had the time to listen.  I was able recently, however, to make time to see, and shoot,  her set. I don’t know that I consider myself a VJ fanatic based on a single show, however I can certainly say that I appreciate and respect her work and would like to see her again in the future- if only to check out her wardrobe….

I also appreciate her comments from her 2017 Rolling Stone Interview in which she discussed trying to keep one’s art alive while needing to pay the bills in less interesting manners.

Your father was a promoter, working with Prince and Bobby Womack, but he supported his family through his construction company. Do you think a lot about how to balance art with the need to make a living?
When you are an artist, you deal in two worlds. But you have to live in the outer world. You have to live with others, take care of others, you have responsibilities. Your journey is always dancing between those two worlds, and that’s what The Order of Time is really talking about. Talking about this journey that each individual goes through in their life, of balancing what they came here to do in spirit and what they actually say when they are in the real world


I’ve learned so much on that path. I’ve had so many jobs, working with my dad and cleaning houses and at coffee shops, cooking meals, walking dogs. With each one, I kept my mantras and my affirmations towards the vision that I had inside as an artist. I’m playing with the thought of, “What does it mean for your dream to not be yours, but a lot of people’s?” And maybe these things live after us. It’s a journey through time and process like any other thing. [Art] has its time when it’s a seed, and when it’s flowering, and it has its time when you feel like it’s dead, but then it gets revived again. It’s just a process.

In our here today, gone tomorrow disposable world, it’s a good thing to be reminded to look towards the horizon, to recall that we, as artists, do have a north star by which we can, must, sail or be lost.

That reminder alone is worth the price of admission.