The Many Voices of Writer’s Block

The Many Voices of Writer’s Block:
Creating Your Inner Writing Circle
Facilitator: Kelly Richey

Date: 04-22-2017
Time: 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Tuition: $50.00
Open to: Anyone 16+ and All Adults

Register

Have you ever experienced writer’s block, suffered from procrastination, or had your writing muse show up when you’re busy only to vanish when you finally clear time to write? In this class, you will make space for the many voices in your head who can block your writing – and reflect on your relationships with them. Through writing, sharing, listening, and discussing, we create an inner writing circle for each of us to return to in our busy lives whenever we are feeling stuck.

An excellent complement to WWf(a)C Core Classes
An innovative modality for working with Writer’s Block
Connect with your Muse and learn what it needs to remain present

Kelly Richey is an award-winning blues musician, poet/songwriter, guitar teacher, and life coach, and has made her mark through the power of her voice – figuratively and literally.
Location & Special Instructions

Women Writing for (a) Change
6906 Plainfield Road
Cincinnati, OH 45236

Scholarships:

Scholarships in varying amounts are available for our programs depending on need and availability of funds. Call 513-272-1171 if you have further questions.

Please include your contact information and the class you are interested in taking. Thank you!

God Woke Me Up

God Woke Me Up – Kelly Richey

God woke me up this morning, with something more to say.
Before your feet hit the ground, please don’t run away.
Confusion is that part of life, things you don’t understand.
Because you’re too busy trying to live, without a helping hand.

Do you think that you can see, a single mile ahead,
As you’re trapped inside your thoughts, anxiety fills your head.
You worry what might come each day, and what has slipped away,
When everything in front of you, has the most to say.

Please be still and hear my words, a GPS of sorts,
Try not to move without a clue, because I know your heart.
Stop trying to live, instead just love, and you will find your way,
Through any trouble that you find, let love become your art.

Written by Kelly Richey

Photo by Sonya Ziegler - God Woke Me Up by Kelly RicheyGod Woke Me Up – Kelly Richey

Photo by Sonya Ziegler

Behind The Walls: Where Do Dreams Come From

Behind The Walls: Where Do Dreams Come From

My life as an artist has been that of comedy and tragedy: I learned to play the guitar before I learned to play “me”.  I’ve told my truth the very best that I can, but my truth has been trapped behind the walls of my soul for most of my life.  I post things on Facebook that lead people to believe that I’m happy, carefree, living the dream— and I am— living the dream, but sometimes even dreams hurt.  Dreams are just dreams, they don’t actually exist unless you make them happen and sometimes dreams never turn out the way you actually dream them.

Where do dreams come from, what do they mean, what do they cost? Here’s what I know about my “dream”:  I get to work from my coffee table at home, I go to bed when I want to, and I wake up when I want to, and nobody tells me what to do or how to do it.  I have a gym in my basement so I can work out, I have a nice but small recording studio that’s tailored to meet my needs, I buy guitar gear instead of sports cars, and I drink coffee instead of Martini’s. I interact with people mainly via email, FaceTime or Skype, and I only leave the house to eat at one of my two or three favorite restaurants. IMG_0183 (1) Behind the FaceBook posts are 16-hour days woven in with booking, gigs, promotion, social media, blog posts, office work, and writing as I’m moved, or in some cases heartbroken or feeling like no one cares. I fall asleep with my computer in my lap most nights, I listen to books on tapes, spiritual or philosophical bodies of work, I long for deep meaningful conversations with friends that know me, that “get me” and that long for the same, and I play guitar because I still actually love doing so.

My guitar is the one consistent connection I’ve had since I was 15 years old.  It’s never left, it’s never threatened to leave, it’s always been 100% honest in every sense of the word.  My guitar has reflected for me a level of truth that I’ve never known, and it’s not unkind and it’s always provided an equal amount of hope mixed in with the most intense set of challenges I’ve ever known because it’s the thing I chose to explore and to see what I was made of— that’s not to say that a piece of wood with strings could hold such power or that what it could bring could create meaning for my life; what I do mean by that statement is this:  It’s my measuring stick and it’s a part of me. It’s how I express things that words fail to express for me.  It’s something that when I’m one with it, magic happens and when I’m not, I know it.  There is a constant pull to explore connection with the hopes of it being an interface between the depths of my soul, my heart and the world around me.2_Kelly Richey_Guitar.JPG

What I just said presents my greatest problem— what the hell am I talking about, can the guitar really be that complex, isn’t it just a bunch of noise at the end of the day and a bunch of people clapping for someone with no real job, for someone who’s been fired from almost every job I ever had?  No, it’s a cry for love just like what each one of us does— it’s a cry for love— a cry to be seen and a cry to be heard, a cry to be understood and a cry to be touched and allowed to touch.

Some nights when I’m on stage, the sweat that pours down my face is laced with tears.  Sometimes when the show is over and I’m in yet another hotel room in some town somewhere, checking to make sure there’s no bed bugs, making sure my feet don’t actually touch the floor, washing my hands after I take a shower and putting a chair in front of my hotel door before I sleep— I wonder why I can’t get fired from this job too.  This job is what I’m called to do, and until lately, I haven’t understood what that really meant.   I was looking for some level of success, some end game strategy, some gold ring to prove the one thing I don’t need to prove— and that’s the fact that I can play a guitar and that’s one argument I’ve never had to weather.  I’m here to find me, to get “real” and to survive that very act, and if I can cultivate enough genuine love and compassion in my heart and I’m not too broken to give and not just think about what I’d like to do in my head but actually become vulnerable enough to do it, maybe I can share the mistakes I‘ve made in a way that can save someone else some of the pain I’ve felt and maybe I can share a few pieces of wisdom I’ve learned throughout my crazy journey.

IMG_0368I know things like where socks go when you can’t find them, how to keep a drivers license after 90 traffic violations, how to stay safe out in the world after 1,000,000 miles of travel, how to keep life-long friends, how to laugh instead of die, how to be honest with myself even if I can’t always verbalize it to others.  I know how to say I’m sorry and mean it, I know how to hurt someone and not mean it.  I know how to get free drinks until my life falls apart, create a reality that doesn’t even exist, and come in for a landing without a parachute. I know what angels look like and I know who “God” is.  I know that I have a guitar tuner and no matter what kind of music I play it works for me just as well as it works for the person playing county music, jazz, or punk.  It’s about connection and it’s about being in tune and it’s about truth and it’s about love.  Whatever we practice is what we get good at.  Whatever we play is what we know. Whatever we listen to is what we hear and whatever we look at is when we see.

It’s what’s behind the walls that has to find it’s way out, and that’s our life’s path.  We dream of what’s outside the walls, and it’s the connection between the two that fosters the state we find our self in.

By Kelly Richey

Photos by Sonya Ziegler

Kelly Richey News & Updates

Kelly Richey News & Updates

“Shakedown Soul” has arrived and starts shipping on Monday to Kelly Richey Fans only!  For a limited time – get a FREE digital download of the CD immediately when you purchase the NEW CD!  All CD’s will be autographed by the band!

 

Kelly Richey News & Updates Splash PageCheck out the list of CD Release Parties:

KELLY RICHEY SOLO:

12/10/15 – Kelly Richey Solo – Live On Air Performance – 6:30pm
Louisville, KY – Crescent Hill Radio All – WCHQ 100.9 FM

12/11/15 – Kelly Richey Solo – Live On Air Performance – 9am    
Louisville, KY – WHAS TV 11 – Great Day Live

12/11/15 – Kelly Richey Solo – 8pm    
Louisville, KY – The Planet Bar & Bistro
Special Guest – “Julius”

12/18/15 – Kelly Richey Solo – 8pm
Waterville, OH    Third Street Cigar

KELLY RICHEY BAND:

12/19/15 – Kelly Richey Band – 8pm
Dayton, OH    – Oddbody’s Music RoomKelly Richey News & Updates - ShakedownSoul-Poster


Kelly Richey News & Updates - Women Writing for (a) Change WRITING WORKSHOP:

12/05/15 – The Many Faces of Writers Block – 12:30pm to 3pm
Saturdays, December 5th, 12th, and 19th, 2015

Women Writing for (a) Change
6906 Plainfield Rd.
Cincinnati, OH 45236
Venue phone: 513-272-1171

Cost: $60 for series (sliding scale available)

Kelly Richey is a certified writing facilitator for Women Writing for (a) Change (affiliated with the WWf(a)C in Cincinnati, Ohio and offers writing circles and writing workshops.

Writers Block: Three Part Series – this workshop can be run as a full day event with three two-hour sessions and lunch break, or as a workshop, or as a series with three separate sessions at two and a half hours each.  Series description below:

  • Session I – The Inner Critic
  • Session II – Procrastinator
  • Session III – The Muse

Have you ever experienced writer’s block, suffered from procrastination, or had your writing muse show up when you’re busy only to vanish when you finally clear time to write? In this three-part series, you will make space for the many voices in your head who can block your writing and reflect on your relationships with them. Through writing, sharing, listening, and discussing, we create an inner writing circle for each of us to return to in our busy lives whenever we are feeling stuck. Connect with your Muse and learn what it needs to remain present!

Kelly Richey is an award-winning blues musician, poet, songwriter, guitar teacher, and life coach.  Richey has made her mark through the power of her voice, figuratively and literally.  Kelly leads writing workshops as a facilitator for Women Writing for (a) Change and was certified through the Conscious Feminine Leadership Academy (CFLA).

Writing Workshop with Kelly Richey – The Many Faces of Writer’s Block

Writing Workshop with Kelly Richey:

The Many Faces of Writer’s Block – December 5, 12, 19

WWf(a)CWriting Workshop with Kelly Richey: Have you ever experienced writer’s block, suffered from procrastination, or had your writing muse show up when you’re busy only to vanish when you finally clear time to write? In this three-part series, you will make space for the many voices in your head who can block your writing and reflect on your relationships with them. Through writing, sharing, listening, and discussing, we create an inner writing circle for each of us to return to in our busy lives whenever we are feeling stuck. Connect with your Muse and learn what it needs to remain present!

When: Saturdays, December 5th, 12th, and 19th, 12:30 to 3:00 p.m.
Where:
Women Writing for (a) Change, 6906 Plainfield Rd. Cincinnati, OH 45236
Cost: $60 (sliding scale available)

Sign up today!

Kelly Richey is an award-winning blues musician, poet, songwriter, guitar teacher, and life coach.  Richey has made her mark through the power of her voice, figuratively and literally.  Kelly leads writing workshops as a facilitator for Women Writing for (a) Change and was certified through the Conscious Feminine Leadership Academy (CFLA).

NEW Writing Workshop – this December only! “The Many Faces of Writer’s Block”

NEW Writing Workshop – this December only! “The Many Faces of Writer’s Block”

WWf(a)CHave you ever experienced writer’s block, suffered from procrastination, or had your writing muse show up when you’re busy only to vanish when you finally clear time to write? In this three-part series, you will make space for the many voices in your head who can block your writing and reflect on your relationships with them. Through writing, sharing, listening, and discussing, we create an inner writing circle for each of us to return to in our busy lives whenever we are feeling stuck. Connect with your Muse and learn what it needs to remain present!

When: Saturdays, December 5th, 12th, and 19th, 12:30 to 3:00 p.m.
Where:
Women Writing for (a) Change, 6906 Plainfield Rd. Cincinnati, OH 45236
Cost: $60 (sliding scale available)

Sign up today!

Kelly Richey is a certified writing facilitator for Women Writing for (a) Change (affiliated with the WWf(a)C in Cincinnati, Ohio and offers writing circles and writing workshops.

Writers Block: Three Part Series – this workshop can be run as a full day event with three two-hour sessions and lunch break, or as a workshop, or as a series with three separate sessions at two and a half hours each.  Series description below:

  • Session I – The Inner Critic
  • Session II – Procrastinator
  • Session III – The Muse

Have you ever experienced writer’s block, suffered from procrastination, or had your writing muse show up when you’re busy only to vanish when you finally clear time to write? In this three-part series, you will make space for the many voices in your head who can block your writing and reflect on your relationships with them. Through writing, sharing, listening, and discussing, we create an inner writing circle for each of us to return to in our busy lives whenever we are feeling stuck. Connect with your Muse and learn what it needs to remain present!

Kelly Richey is an award-winning blues musician, poet, songwriter, guitar teacher, and life coach.  Richey has made her mark through the power of her voice, figuratively and literally.  Kelly leads writing workshops as a facilitator for Women Writing for (a) Change and was certified through the Conscious Feminine Leadership Academy (CFLA).

The Many Faces of Writer’s Block

The Many Faces of Writer’s Block

Class Description:

Have you ever experienced writer’s block, suffered from procrastination, or had your writing muse show up when you’re busy only to vanish when you finally clear time to write? In this three-part series, you will make space for the many voices in your head who can block your writing and reflect on your relationships with them. Through writing, sharing, listening, and discussing, we create an inner writing circle for each of us to return to in our busy lives whenever we are feeling stuck.

• An excellent complement to WWf(a)C Core Classes
• An innovative modality for working with Writer’s Block
• Connect with your Muse and learn what it needs to remain present

Dates:  Saturday’s, December 5th, 12th, 19th, 2015
Time:  12:30pm to 3:00pm
Cost:  $60
Facilitator:  Kelly Richey

Women Writing for (a) Change®
6906 Plainfield Rd. Cincinnati, OH 45236
Phone: 513-272-1171

Register Now

Kelly Richey is an award-winning blues musician, poet/songwriter, guitar teacher, and life coach, and has made her mark through the power of her voice – figuratively and literally.  Kelly will lead these workshops as part of the certification requirements to become a facilitator as part of the Conscious Feminine Leadership Academy (CFLA) through Women Writing for (a) Change.

Kelly Richey_banner_14_headshot

Good Things Going Around

Good Things Going Around:

Cincinnati’s Kelly Richey Talks About Her Inspiration

I’d like to introduce you to Kelly Richey. Kelly is a Cincinnati based musician, writer and educator who has been described as  “Stevie Ray Vaughan trapped in a woman’s body with Janis Joplin screaming to get out”. Having shared the stage with many legends, she has been listed as among the top 100 gifted guitarists by the Truefire Community in 2011, and frequently draws comparisons to blues guitar icons Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan. Kelly has been teaching guitar almost as long as she’s been playing; with over three decades of teaching experience under her belt, she is a deeply dedicated and inspirational guitar instructor who has taught well over 1,000 students to date.

Additionally, in 2009, Kelly founded Powered By Intention, a Coaching Consultancy designed to educate, motivate, and inspire people to identify their life’s true purpose and achieve the life of their dreams. And, she is president of Music4Change, Inc. a Cincinnati nonprofit organization committed to music education in today’s schools as a vehicle for human expression, cultural understanding, and academic achievement. Three specifically aligned programs offer live performance, lecture, interactive participation and facilitate learning opportunities for youth.

As if all of that weren’t enough, Kelly is a gifted writer and shares her talent as a facilitator for another nonprofit called Women Writing for a Change.

On Kelly’s website, she candidly shares her own, very personal story – her journey as a person who has dyslexia and ADHD, and how they impacted her determination and success, and desire to help others succeed.

“Having a reading disability has caused two dynamics for me:  1) I have an insatiable appetite now for learning and 2) I have a passion for teaching and helping others learn.  Nothing excites me more than to work with my students and clients… teaching, coaching, consulting,” she wrote.

“Had I not gravitated towards music and discovered books in audio form, I honestly don’t  know what I would have done.  My life would have turned out much differently, I’m sure.  What I know now is that there is no cookie cutter mold to learning.  I’m proof that even someone with severe dyslexia can learn to play a musical instrument….For many years having dyslexia negatively affected my self-esteem.  It wasn’t until I was in my late 20’s that I began to realize I might actually be rather intelligent.”

Please continue reading to learn more about Cincinnati’s music legend.

Good Going Around - Kelly Richey

GTGA: What is something people may not know about you?
Kelly: People mainly know me as a guitarist, singer/songwriter, recording artist, performer and guitar instructor, but there is an entire “other” side to my life.  I am a life coach and hold certifications as a Dream Coach and True Purpose Coach; I’m trained in Voice Dialog; and I recently became certified as a facilitator for Women Writing for a Change.  It is my deepest desire for my life’s work to weave together elements of musical performance and recording by teaching one-on-one and workshops, and life coaching and facilitating writing workshops for personal growth and community building.

GTGATell us about a challenge that you overcame in life and how it impacted you.
Kelly: I am dyslexic, so learning to read has presented me with a series of challenges throughout all stages of my life.  My dyslexia left me unable to succeed in school, as much of the understanding and support provided in schools today simply did not exist when I was in grade school.  Thanks to books in audio format, I’ve managed to work my way through hundreds of books over a lifetime committed to learning and self-education.

Here is an article on my blog, How Dyslexia Made Me a Better Teacher,  that addresses this in more depth.

GTGA: What are some of your simple pleasures?
Kelly: A great cup of coffee, conversation with a good friend, healthy places to eat out, and a good power-nap.

GTGA: What is one of your favorite childhood memories?
Kelly: One of my favorite childhood memories is listening to my grandmother tell me stories.

GTGA: Name three things on your Gratititude List.
Kelly: If I had to list three things I was most grateful for, they would be: all the great friends I’ve collected throughout my life, many of whom have been profound teachers; good health and strong constitution; and the ability make a living doing what I love.

GTGA: What is an accomplishment you achieved of which you are proud?
Kelly: Overcoming learning disabilities and finding a way to build a successful and sustainable career doing what I love.

GTGA: Tell us about someone who has been a positive influence on your life and why.
Kelly: My Uncle, Rev. Bob Brown, was one of my biggest influences. He was the preacher for the church where I grew up.  My uncle was a passionate preacher, teacher, storyteller and community builder.  Our church was the first church to integrate, and it was burned to the ground when I was 5 years old.  He was a leader in civil rights; he believed in separation of church and state; and he felt the church should be relevant if it was to serve in meeting the needs of people in their individual communities.

GTGA: What is a motto you live by?
We must first be in integrity with ourselves in order to be in integrity with others.

Meaningful Monday sponsored by WWF(a)C…!!!

Meaningful Monday sponsored by WWF(a)C…!!!

I was honored to be one of the writers at Monday night’s “Meaningful Mondays: Women Poets in the Courtyard” at Arnold’s in downtown Cincinnati.  Teri Foltz, Laurel Chambers, and Bev Bowers, three amazing writers from the Women Writing for (a) Change community, joined me.  Each of us read original works beneath the city lights of the famed courtyard, to a warm and receptive crowd.  I’d like to thank Annette Januzzi Wick for facilitating this event and Arnold’s for making us feel so welcome!

Kelly Richey WWF(a)C Poetry Reading - photo by Jeff Shiflett


Whisperings – A Collection of Poems by Blues Guitarist Kelly Richey
THROUGH PAIN , THROUGH DARKNESS, THROUGH LIGHT

This book is a special collection of 89 poems (including companion CD) written by female blues guitarist Kelly Richey. These ultra-personal poems were pulled from over 5,000 writings spanning three decades. The poems deal with finding oneself, relationship struggles, emotional turmoil, the ups and downs of life, vulnerability, survivorship, spirituality, love, lost love, heartache, longing, and passion.

This  book includes an audio companion CD with Kelly Richey reading each poem from its collection.

Thickened

I once met a man – shooting lies in the wind,
He wanted my heart – so I gave him my hand.
He took all my money – for the stories he told,
I left him there standing – in the chill of his cold.

I once met a woman – with a stare right through me,
She wanted my life – so I gave her a key.
She took all my love – for the stories she wrote,
I left her in anger – with no sense and sheer pity.

I once met myself – a bit thickened by the wind,
I know more about love – and have fewer friends.
But I’m not the worst – for the things I have seen,
Each day I grow stronger – as I remember what they mean.

Reflection

It’s a two color nightmare
It’s a hole in your shoe
It’s the heat you just can’t bear
It’s an empty mirror
With a full-on stare

Slow Motion Riot

It’s a slow motion riot
It’s the pain you can’t feel
It’s the ache inside a broken heart
It’s the cold inside a chill
It’s the reason without a question
It’s the truth inside a lie
It’s the forest when the leaves have fallen

it’s love – it’s why we cry


When I Was Empty

So many nights I’ve lived and worked in bars –
I learned a long time ago what I so often forget –
you ain’t gonna find nothing there!
People without something go there –
at least that’s why I always went.
When I was empty I went searching for the answer in a bottle –
I went looking’ for a shot of courage –
…by the time I was leaving – I needed courage to leave

Time

Sometimes you just have to sit there and let the wind blow you down –
Like a hot summer day or a harsh winter night –
Some things just have to come — and go.


Shadows

I live in the shadows – I follow them – I find them everywhere
on your face –
in my heart –
I run from them – I trace their every line

I seek light because they find me
I seek peace because they haunt me
I find myself within and without them
I feel free – I feel chains within my freedom
I see light outside the darkness – I refuse to cry
I refuse to let those shadows haunt me – I refuse
Rainbows, shadows, tears, laughter
I feel – and I thank God I can feel

Shadows remind me of my feelings
of my hidden heart – of my life
of what I should hide
what I could hide—

They’re why I write
so I won’t hide anymore

The Street

For every name there is a street –
For every street is like a line on my face –
It grows deeper – it holds the sweat, the salt, the stone – the dirt –
The pavement – a woman watches – a woman walks – a woman runs –
Like veins the street pumps people –
I romanticize about the power it holds
It goes everywhere – it leads a person on – it ends –
It wraps around and around – it knocks down trees and mountains –
It’s steel gray – it’s truth
 

Sorrow Can’t Find Me Now

I’ve learned the hard way
most things I know
I built my house on sand
and made castles out of snow

The things that I remember
leave scars upon my hands
Right and wrong lay buried
beneath the ground I stand

My eyes are broken windows
my soul is wet with tears
My feet have felt the gravel
as they carried me through my fears

Dreams flow through my veins
like water from a sieve
Sorrow only knows my name
it knows not where I live


All We Have

Love is a blind heart
Hate is a bloody fist
Sweat is a naked body
Cold is an empty bed
Night is when the sun has drawn close
Morning is when our bed is totally undone
Feelings are things we keep well hidden
Lies are what we choke on as we run
Evil is what we smell when we are shaken
Good is what stays unnoticed as it shines
Death is someone else’s misfortune
Life is what we claim to be unkind
Heartless is an arrow in a tender place
Loving is a heart that is kept warm
Tomorrow is something that will never happen
Today is all we have until it’s gone.

Written by Kelly Richey

Photo by: Jeff Shiflett

Meaningful Mondays: Women Poets in the Courtyard

Meaningful Mondays: Women Poets in the Courtyard

Meaningful Monday’s — I’ve been asked to participate in a poetry reading at Arnold’s Bar and Grill, downtown Cincinnati, Ohio, on September 14th at 7pm. Registration is not required, but its helpful in their planning. I would like to invite anyone, male or female, to come join us for a meaningful (and fun) evening!!!

;>)
k

Facilitator: Annette Januzzi Wick
• Date: 09-14-2015
• Time: 7:00 pm to
• Tuition: FREE
• Open to: Everyone (male and female)

Register

Meaningful Mondays: Women Poets in the Courtyard, returns this fall, beginning September 14th at 7 pm at Arnold’s downtown, Cincinnati. Four women poets, Teri Foltz, Laurel Chambers, Kelly Richey and Bev Bowers, from the Women Writing for (a) Change community, read their original works beneath the city lights of this famed courtyard.  Free, but registration is suggested. Full menu available from Arnold’s.  For more information, contact [email protected] or [email protected], or call 513-272-1171.

Location & Special Instructions

Meaningful Mondays: Women Poets in the Courtyard
Monday, September 14 at 7:00pm
Arnold’s Bar and Grill

210 East Eighth Street
Cincinnati, OH
513-421-6234
www.arnoldsbarandgrill.com

Meaningful Mondays: Women Poets in the Courtyard

2015 Conscious Feminine Leadership Academy

2015 Conscious Feminine Leadership Academy

This summer has been full, with constant touring, teaching guitar, developing a new solo show and recording songs for my next CD.  As an artist, I’m constantly looking for ways to grow and for new sources of inspiration.  In late 2014 I began to explore an organization called Women Writing for a Change.  As I was exploring the vast number of writing classes and workshops they offered, I came across a leadership training program that caught my attention — CFLA or “Conscious Feminine Leadership Academy”.  In January, I attended a discernment class they offered to see if this might be a good fit for further enhancing my skills as an artist, band leader, teacher and coach.  Less than a year later, I’m honored to announce completion of the “2015 Conscious Feminine Leadership Academy” certification program sponsored by Women Writing for a Change.

The word “feminist” brings up for a lot for people and I find it to be a word that makes both men and women uncomfortable.  With this said, I would like to take this opportunity to share a little about what I learned.

feminism |ˈfeməˌnizəm|
noun
The advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men.

I find this definition to fall short of what I have discovered feminism  to be.  I feel that the above definition of feminist represents women in commerce, rather than women stepping into a whole and balanced life of empowerment.  As a guitarist, I worked to achieve personal mastery on my instrument, and as a feminist, I work to achieve personal mastery as a woman. I support women in their role of bringing the balance of  the feminine into a world where the masculine has played a dominant role.

When I first began playing the guitar, there were very few women who were doing what I was about to do and I had no idea where my journey with music would lead.  I remember my guitar teacher saying to me “girls can’t play the guitar”.  My teacher wasn’t being unkind, he was simply stating the facts as he knew them to be.  This was before the internet and youtube and there was no Googling “women guitar players”.

When I was starting out, guys would not let me audition much less play with them.  I wanted to play lead guitar, not just rhythm guitar and I wasn’t much of a singer early on.  This was before Lilith Fair, before Ellen, before the world that we can easily take for granted today.  I have no axe to grind. I’ve had a number of wonderful male supporters and once my guitar teacher saw how serious I was, he gave me everything he had!

Feminism isn’t about women getting equal rights, it’s about women taking ownership of who they are, embracing the talents they have – and doing so in a society where men have held such visible power.

CFLA 2015 Conscious Feminine Leadership Academy

I love the challenges I have been faced with as it’s made me who I am.  I started off in my twenties with a chip on each shoulder and quickly learned that it did not serve me well.  Over time I learned to embrace my role as a woman, to realize the many strengths that I have and I’m  thankful for the women who have come before me.  I realize that this is a big conversation, a conversation that reaches far beyond “women’s rights”, “a woman’s right to vote”, “a woman’s right to choose”…etc.It’s about integrity, self respect, self care, and self love.  It’s about equality as a human being, it’s about  having the power to make choices that govern our lives, it’s about freedom. It’s not about being special, but about being alive and having the ability to actualize who we are with the same freedom as men.

There were eleven of us that went through this training plus two facilitators.  Each of us with our own story, our own set of strengths, and our own vision. We each have a desire to be fully conscious, to embrace both the feminine and masculine aspects of ourselves, to become leaders with integrity and to be part of an organization that will provide structure and support for a process that we can take to our work, our communities, our families and anywhere our voice needs to be heard.

The Kelly Richey Band Photos with Heart and Boston

The Kelly Richey Band Photos with Heart and Boston

This has been a very BUSY past few weeks!!!  The Kelly Richey Band kicked things off by playing “The Bash” in Middletown, OH on Wednesday of last week.  On Friday, I entered a week long retreat with WWf(a)C and slipped out for a 24 hour period to join the band to open for Heart in PA and once the retreat ended yesterday, Thurdays at noon, I headed straight to Kettering, OH to the Fraze Pavilion to open for Boston last night.  Today we get back in the van and head to Thunder Bay, Ontario for one of Canada’s largest blues festivals where we play tomorrow night!

Here are some photo highlights from the Heart and Boston Concerts– I will write and reflect on our journey’s when I return!

To see all photos from the concerts: Click Here

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Heart at the Sypglass Winery

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Heart_Photo by Sonya Ziegler

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Heart_Photo by Sonya Ziegler - 186

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Heart_Photo by Sonya Ziegler - 188


Ann and Nancy Wilson of Heart

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Heart_Photo by Sonya Ziegler - 191

Ann Wilson of Heart

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Heart_Photo by Sonya Ziegler - 192

Nancy Wilson of Heart


The Kelly Richey Band opening for Boston at Fraze Pavilion

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Boston_Photo by Sonya Ziegler - 183

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Boston_Photo by Sonya Ziegler - 184

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Boston_Photo by Sonya Ziegler - 192

The Kelly Richey Band opening for Boston_Photo by Sonya Ziegler - 193

Photos by Sonya Ziegler