Posted by: suek2001 | August 21, 2016

A star is born???

This will be my last entry on Fantasy Camp…although you never know..more esoterica could show up….

Still, this needed a blog entry all by itself….Almost ever year, my friend Fred Grittner(check out his awesome blog here:

..hosts a seperate event from all the official Fantasy Camp events…

He calls it From the Suites to the Stage….a chance for those who have sung in the Suites…or anywhere else to sing…you can’t be a camper..this is basically an open mic with a very appreciative audience…

Late last year, I volunteered to perform….I have no clue what possessed me to but I did….I hadn’t sung in front of a crowd since 1994..and that was leading our church choir in “Battle Belongs to the Lord”….I recall Mom wasn’t that she didn’t think I could sing….to be fair, I spent years telling her she couldn’t sing either….turns out..we’re both wrong…(although I think she has a better voice than mine)…

So, as the time drew closer, I realized what I was about to do…and I knew I couldn’t top the other performers that really had skills…and I didn’t want to butcher the tune I loved…..I chose a song that means lot to me….and it was in celebration of my 15th anniversary of moving to Duluth…It’s called “The Road Shines Bright”….


I was nervous about killing the song I loved but with the help of Debbie Pinkney on harmony vocals…Bob Moore on banjo..and Charlie Woodward on guitar, I knew I couldn’t back out..and knew I wouldn’t be alone…

As I arrived at the event, I found out that I would be following one of my favorite performers….Steve Cottrell…the man’s voice just melts me….and I was a bit nervous to follow Steve….that’s like asking Tiny Tim to follow Adele…Still, I figured I had a room full of friends to cheer me on….and a very dear friend filmed the whole thing…It meant the world to have him there to share this moment…

I noticed that George Grove and Rick Dougherty of the Kingston Trio were in the back row..I felt a bit pressured….actually, I felt a bit queasy…and my prayer before I went onstage was that all my bodily functions would remain in check…

As Fred introduced me, I knew it was too late to run…and then Fred said it..”Suzy-q is a big fan of one member of the Kingston Trio in particular”…..and then I heard a loud “YAY!!!!!” with hands waving up….and I knew it was George Grove….I laughed so hard all my nerves just flew away….and I knew I could do this….and it warmed my heart that after years of screaming at the mere mention of his name in concerts, George had done the same for me..sort of…as Rick pointed out, he was screaming for himself….whatever the reason, I felt like I could take on the world….

..and so I did…..and sang the song….I wasn’t exactly ready for American Idol but I think I did okay..vocally…and I loved that everyone clapped with me..and I threw in an adlib about “let’s have some church in here today”….and just like that, it was over….and I heard that applause….

I was relieved it was over…I was relieved all my bodily functions remained intact…and yet, I had a euphoria that I had never felt before….Truthfully, I couldn’t tell whether I wanted to fly…or have sex….instead I stood in the back of the room and watched a few more performers….it was all a blur…except I remember a bear hug from George Grove….and then all my friends started saying what an awesome job I did..I figured they were just being supportive…

I saw the video and realized…”Eh..not too bad…”…I knew the real test would be a few days later…..I heard John Stewart’s “Road Shines Bright”..and I smiled…I enjoyed it still..and it flashed me back to that feeling…Yep, I succeeded….and I have a bit more confidence than I did I may just do it again next year..and Fred suggested I do “Country Roads”…..I can handle that…

..and someday..when I work up the courage to upload it to You Tube, I shall…for now…just your imagination will have to do…



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