nashville

Chatting with Hunter Hayes - Day 28 #31DaysofBlogging

We may have written a song called Nashville recently that may give the false idea that we dislike the city in some way. In all truth, Nashville is a magical place. It is a one of a kind, special, incredible town filled with talented, generous, and interesting people. It is full of a “You never know what could happen” attitude, and we credit our willingness to go find out what could happen in large part to that attitude that is so felt there.

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Today we want to tell you about a magical place in Nashville called The Bluebird Cafe.

The Bluebird Cafe is a place for songwriters. They have 2 shows per night, and songwriters sit in chairs in the middle of this tiny (yet magical) venue and take turns telling the stories behind the songs they have written. Audience members are sitting all around the songwriters making it quite intimate. It’s been an iconic venue for a long time, but since the TV show Nashville aired, its popularity skyrocketed. Most shows sell out in under 5 minutes and there can be lines seen halfway down the block on any given day -- people just waiting for any last minute available tickets.

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We’ve had the privilege of playing there a few times, and each time we feel the magnitude of what an honor it is to be able to share our songs in the same spot where so many of our song writing heroes have sat and shared theirs.

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Not too long ago, our friend and super talented pal, David Bradley asked us to do a round with him and Hunter Hayes. We were pumped! We arrived and got caught up with both of them, and as we were chatting, Hunter asked us what we’d been up to. We told him about the podcast and the idea that we were exploring of talking about “What to do when life doesn’t go the way you planned it.” He was like, “I love that idea -- I’d love to talk to you guys about that on your podcast sometime.” SO THAT WAS AWESOME!

So, we played the round -- which was so much fun. Honestly...if we could do that show every night of the week, we’d be happy. And a few weeks later we went to Hunter’s house and recorded THIS episode. It was one of our favorite conversations because Hunter doesn’t hold back talking about the hard parts of life and the music industry. It’s a MUST listen.

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We just want to remind you, in case you are like thinking we have all of these amazing guests planned out and in our pockets ahead of time, we don’t. We want to remind you that sometimes the coolest things in life JUST HAPPEN when you say yes.

So, maybe you need a sign right now that you need to say yes to some opportunity or invitation you have in front of you, and maybe this is your sign, us telling you that you should just DO IT. You don’t know who you may meet, where you might end up, or what door might be opened just from making one small move.

Tomorrow we’ll tell you about interviewing one of our favorite authors who also happens to be a TV/movie/broadway star.

Hope you guys are liking the blogging as much as we are!

xo

J&K

Someone To Look To - Day 27 #31DaysOfBlogging

Life can be so intimidating and scary. It can be confusing to know which way to go. When you are chasing a dream, it’s helpful to have someone to look to, someone who has been there before you, walked the road you’re wanting to walk. You need a mentor, an example, a champion.

We have been lucky enough to find a few of these people along the way, but today we want to tell you about one that has had a huge influence on our lives and career.

We first met Jann Arden via Twitter after we covered one of her songs on our blog...way back in like 2010. (You can watch it here, and please disregard Jill’s very DARK hair stage. She learned through that experience that blonde was her true north.)

Jann reached out to us and asked if we wanted to meet up for coffee when she was in Nashville. UH, YEAH. We have been fans of Jann since the mid-90s when we were 14 and her song Insensitive rocked our worlds. We couldn’t believe we were going to actually meet her!

We got together, chatted for hours about music, life, career, and more...plus laughed our heads off because she is absolutely one of the funniest people we have ever met. We all stayed in touch, getting together every time we were in the same town, and then Jann asked us to come open her tour in Canada in 2014. Over and over again, Jann encouraged us in our music career. Whether it was shooting us a text or email, listening to our new music, or telling her fans and followers about us, she was always showing support.

As artists, dreamers, and humans, we could not ask for a better example in our lives than Jann…

...and because she is just the best, we were really hoping to have her on our podcast so you guys could hear more from her too. Well, SHE AGREED! We went to Canada in October and interviewed her for Girls Just Pod To Have Fun before her show in Hamilton. She brought inspiration, wisdom, and of course laughter. If you missed this episode, please go listen!

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Not only that, but after our interview, she asked us to sing our song Nashville for her audience during her show that night! You can watch that here. Here are some pictures of us getting ready and sound-checking for the show…

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So today we just wanted to say thanks to Jann for believing in us, supporting us, and being someone we can look to as we navigate this crazy life. May we all have people like Jann around us, who make us better and bring so much good into our lives….and may we all learn to be those people for others around us too. Love you Jann (and Midi!)

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Tomorrow we’ll tell you about one of our very favorite shows we played this year, and another podcast guest that came from that experience!

J&K

Take Care Of Yourself - Day 8 #31DaysOfBlogging

Today we wanted to share with you a little about a place where we each spent a week during our walkabout this year.

The place is called Onsite Workshops and it’s a therapeutic retreat center in Tennessee. We each learned so much, but Kate wrote a blog earlier this year sharing extensively about some of the things she learned. It is below, in case you missed it.

We have been learning the importance of mental health and that it is something we need to pay attention to and be gentle with. Onsite Workshops is a place where we were really able to do this. We even did a podcast interview with the CEO of Onsite, Miles Adcox, if you want to learn even more.

Here is Kate’s blog, below. Take care of yourself today. You are important.


I’m not sure where you were when you got the news that Kate Spade had ended her life.

For me, that news will be forever etched in my mind. I will always remember the patch of grass where I was standing, the feeling of the sun hitting my face as it was setting. The lump in my throat as I tried to swallow when I heard it was suicide. My stomach physically ached.  And not because I was a Kate Spade super-fan, but because I heard the news moments after receiving my phone back on June 7th after being away from all technology for a week. Let me back up.

Onsite.

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On June 1st, I drove myself about an hour outside of Nashville, Tennessee, to a place called Cumberland Furnace, TN to the Onsite Workshops. Onsite is a therapeutic retreat center and they have a week-long program called “The Living Centered Program,” or LCP. I’ve had a ton of friends who have gone through the program, who all had incredible experiences, but I never thought I would actually do it.

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See, I always thought of Onsite as a rehab type of place — like, you only go there for serious problems. But, after talking with my friend Miles who is the CEO at Onsite, and another friend Jess that works there, I had a better understanding that the program was really for anyone who wanted to take the next step. Anyone who wanted to become more emotionally healthy. A safe space to work on yourself and on your stuff. And that looks like all different things for different people. It’s really just a place for you to get emotionally fit.

So, with a little help and encouragement from my friends I said YES and signed up for the June 1st LCP. Honestly, part of me almost let fear win. Like, I almost didn’t say yes. I didn’t like the fact that I would be without a cell phone/computer and all the comforts of the outside world for a week — hello SEPARATION anxiety from my life. It was a real thing.  And another real fear was that the last 8 months I’ve really felt in an emotionally healthy place…or at least A LOT better than other times in my life…so I was a little worried that a week of intense group therapy was going to leave me in a worse place than before. But, I was able to talk that out with some of the Onsite staff, and they helped calm my fears and reassure me that it was a guided process — I wasn’t going to be alone with these fears.

So, June 1st came, and at around 7pm that evening, I handed over my cell phone. Guys, it was weird. I was excited to be free from it for a week, but I also immediately felt SO ALONE. I had none of my people with me. I couldn’t text Jill if I was having a melt-down. I couldn’t send a GIF to my girls if I needed a laugh. I couldn’t call my mom. I couldn’t insta-story and chat with all my insta-people. Solo. Me. Well, me surrounded by 56 strangers. Yikes.

I’m not going to share the details of all that we did, but it was a combination of mornings spent with the big group — learning more about the science behind why we do what we do…sort of like emotional fitness classes, and then the late mornings and afternoons were spent in your small group of about 8 or 9 other individuals, and that’s when the more focused work would happen…in group therapy.

I am not even going to lie — I thought the idea of group therapy was terrible. I mean, I knew that was the thing that LCP did, but I’ve never done group therapy and I was certain I would hate it. But, OMG, it was magic. These 9 people started out as strangers, and I can tell you right now, there’s not one of them I wouldn’t fly across the country for in one hot second right now. These strangers became like family. Six days. What in the world?

I’m not even sure how to fully summarize what changes I feel in myself, but it feels significant. And full disclosure, I definitely had some personal a-ha moments that I want to keep for myself or family/close friends, but I do really want to share some of my takeaways with you in hopes that they might be useful to you. They might be jumbled or random but here’s the bottom line.

I loved it. I feel like I learned tools that will help me navigate the rest of my life. I feel like I experienced real healing in some wounds that I was carrying since childhood. I would highly recommend the program to anyone who has blood running through their veins. I think anyone and everyone could benefit. Literally there were people there from ages 19 to mid-70s. Anyone can do this.

Group Therapy.

So, you’re in a small group, where everyone has signed a confidentiality agreement and you have a therapist who is the guide for your group and you get to know these people. Like, KNOW them. As you share your story and as they share theirs, something begins to shift inside of you. You cannot look someone in the eyes when they’re talking about their pain and not be changed. My therapist group leader told me that 70% of your healing comes from just being in the room — the 30% is when you’re talking about your own stuff, but that might not even be as impactful. And I realized something…that might be the key. I think that’s what we’re all looking for in life. Someone to bear witness to our pain. We don’t need someone to fix it. Or say it’s going to be fine. Or pity us. We just need someone to see it. Someone to bear witness to our pain. Especially if the pain happened a long time ago, to go back, to uncover those painful moments and have a room full of people witness it. There is healing in that.

I am a fixer by nature. I want to rescue and fix and make a plan for change to get out of pain. Yet, that was not my role —in group therapy or in life — my role is to say, I see you in that pain. Maybe that’s it. Just, I see it. I am a witness to your pain…and I’m sorry. You take 57 strangers, and you realize that every single person there is carrying pain of some sort. Wounds. Hurt. Heartache. Some of them are scars that run deep. Some are fresh and still oozing with infection. But pain is pain. I left there and I swear I was seeing people differently. The cashier at Kroger. The guy flipping burgers at Five Guys. Every single human alive has a story and most likely has pain. It makes me want to listen more. I don’t need to fix or rescue. I need to listen and see people. I need to bear witness to their pain. It’s powerful.

It was intense.

They say the week there is equivalent to 8 months of weekly therapy. So, it’s no walk in the park. At times, it was uncomfortable…pushing me out of my comfort zone and into feelings that I haven’t felt in a while. Was it a breeze? No. Was it worth it? Yes. Because here’s the thing: I’m pretty certain that great things come after a bit of friction. Sometimes sitting in the group room, I felt uncomfortable and it felt hard. I think of it now like fire or friction. No one likes fire, but that’s how you get the refined beauty. No one likes the friction on the rock until the diamond appears. And I don’t mean it to be a cheesy analogy, but I mean it. It reminded me that most things in life that are worth it take work, and sometimes that work is uncomfortable in the process.


You aren’t allowed to talk about what you do for work. That is a true story. You arrive and you are given a name tag. Kate R. — that was all of me. You guys, I’ve been a part of the duo Jill and Kate for 15 freaking years. Do you know how awesome it was for people to get to know me? Me. Not “Kate” from Jill and Kate...or Kate the back-up singer for Kelly Clarkson. Me! Just me! This part was so helpful.  Literally, there are people that don’t know the difference between Jill and I, and honestly they don’t care to. When showing up at an event on my own people will ask me: “So, how are you guys?” Ummm…it’s just me here.

I felt seen.

This kind of piggy backs on my last point — but during my week at Onsite, I felt seen. I sort of think you can’t escape that. Seen, known, and loved. I think someone summarized those things that might be our three most basic desires and longings. I wasn’t known for accomplishments or seen because of what I did for work. I was seen as a human being not a human doing.

Also, I realized that so much of my life is work. And I love it — I love all that I get to do, but when people aren’t allowed to talk about work — you talk about who you are. Sometimes around the meal tables there would be awkward lulls in conversation because the natural flow of conversation NORM is to talk about work. Instead, I found myself asking the question “Do you have any hobbies? What do you do for fun?” A lot. It was awesome because you actually get to know people for who they are, not what they do. Yes, yes, yes. I’m trying to do this more. My way of asking people questions is now, “So what keeps you busy when you’re not {at the event or driving for Uber}?”

Another huge takeaway for me was that my job is to look after myself. Not in a “Only lookout for #1” way or a selfish manner at all, but that my role in life is taking care of and nurturing myself. I cannot control anyone else or any other situation, but I can take care of myself. A lot of my nature is to caretake — which my therapist also pointed out the difference between care-taking and caregiving. That care-taking is way more about you than it is the other person. Ummm…say what? Thanks Jim for the mic drop moment. Taking vs. giving. Dang, that was a lightbulb moment for me. But I realized that self-care is something that I need to focus on.

Meditation and the brain.

So here’s the deal. I have always heard meditating is good for you. I sort of thought it was more in the New Age vein, but heck, even the Bible talks about meditating…but I’ve never really done it, because I thought that it was something to do for fun or for spiritual reasons. During one of the morning sessions, they do a whole lecture about meditating and show you scientific scans of brains and meditation. I will not attempt to regurgitate medical information here, but let’s just say I now try to meditate every single morning. It’s like flossing but for your brain. Do it, do it, do it. I downloaded a few free apps that have guided mediations: Calm, Headspace and Simple Habit. So far, I like Calm the best.

I am so incredibly grateful for my time at Onsite. To the people that read this that spent the week with me — you know who you are, and I am so grateful to have you with me on my journey from here on out. To the ones who got me to Onsite — Jess, Miles and all the other friends I texted for advice — thank you! I am a different person because of you.

And to you, reader, who might be feeling scared or stuck or in need of the next step…reach out for help. If it’s a friend or a therapist or counselor or a week at Onsite — don’t underestimate the healing power of sharing your pain with others — that’s what we all need — we need a witness to the pain.

And so, I think that’s why the news of Kate Spade hit me so hard.

She was seen and known by billions of people. Had success. Money. Fame. But did she feel truly seen? Truly known? Truly loved. Did she need someone to bear witness to her pain? I don’t know and I never will. But hearing the news of her death was the punctuation mark to my week at Onsite that made it forever memorable.

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My hope for you, dear reader, is that you feel seen, known and loved.

Much love,

Kate







A Reflection from My Time At Onsite

I’m not sure where you were when you got the news that Kate Spade had ended her life.

For me, that news will be forever etched in my mind. I will always remember the patch of grass where I was standing, the feeling of the sun hitting my face as it was setting. The lump in my throat as I tried to swallow when I heard it was suicide. My stomach physically ached.  And not because I was a Kate Spade super-fan, but because I heard the news moments after receiving my phone back on June 7th after being away from all technology for a week. Let me back up.

Onsite.

On June 1st, I drove myself about an hour outside of Nashville, Tennessee, to a place called Cumberland Furnace, TN to the Onsite Workshops. Onsite is a therapeutic retreat center and they have a week-long program called “The Living Centered Program,” or LCP. I’ve had a ton of friends who have gone through the program, who all had incredible experiences, but I never thought I would actually do it.

See, I always thought of Onsite as a rehab type of place — like, you only go there for serious problems. But, after talking with my friend Miles who is the CEO at Onsite, and another friend Jess that works there, I had a better understanding that the program was really for anyone who wanted to take the next step. Anyone who wanted to become more emotionally healthy. A safe space to work on yourself and on your stuff. And that looks like all different things for different people. It’s really just a place for you to get emotionally fit.

So, with a little help and encouragement from my friends I said YES and signed up for the June 1st LCP. Honestly, part of me almost let fear win. Like, I almost didn’t say yes. I didn’t like the fact that I would be without a cell phone/computer and all the comforts of the outside world for a week — hello SEPARATION anxiety from my life. It was a real thing.  And another real fear was that the last 8 months I’ve really felt in an emotionally healthy place…or at least A LOT better than other times in my life…so I was a little worried that a week of intense group therapy was going to leave me in a worse place than before. But, I was able to talk that out with some of the Onsite staff, and they helped calm my fears and reassure me that it was a guided process — I wasn’t going to be alone with these fears.

So, June 1st came, and at around 7pm that evening, I handed over my cell phone. Guys, it was weird. I was excited to be free from it for a week, but I also immediately felt SO ALONE. I had none of my people with me. I couldn’t text Jill if I was having a melt-down. I couldn’t send a GIF to my girls if I needed a laugh. I couldn’t call my mom. I couldn’t insta-story and chat with all my insta-people. Solo. Me. Well, me surrounded by 56 strangers. Yikes.

I’m not going to share the details of all that we did, but it was a combination of mornings spent with the big group — learning more about the science behind why we do what we do…sort of like emotional fitness classes, and then the late mornings and afternoons were spent in your small group of about 8 or 9 other individuals, and that’s when the more focused work would happen…in group therapy.

I am not even going to lie — I thought the idea of group therapy was terrible. I mean, I knew that was the thing that LCP did, but I’ve never done group therapy and I was certain I would hate it. But, OMG, it was magic. These 9 people started out as strangers, and I can tell you right now, there’s not one of them I wouldn’t fly across the country for in one hot second right now. These strangers became like family. Six days. What in the world?

I’m not even sure how to fully summarize what changes I feel in myself, but it feels significant. And full disclosure, I definitely had some personal a-ha moments that I want to keep for myself or family/close friends, but I do really want to share some of my takeaways with you in hopes that they might be useful to you. They might be jumbled or random but here’s the bottom line.

I loved it. I feel like I learned tools that will help me navigate the rest of my life. I feel like I experienced real healing in some wounds that I was carrying since childhood. I would highly recommend the program to anyone who has blood running through their veins. I think anyone and everyone could benefit. Literally there were people there from ages 19 to mid-70s. Anyone can do this.

Group Therapy.

So, you’re in a small group, where everyone has signed a confidentiality agreement and you have a therapist who is the guide for your group and you get to know these people. Like, KNOW them. As you share your story and as they share theirs, something begins to shift inside of you. You cannot look someone in the eyes when they’re talking about their pain and not be changed. My therapist group leader told me that 70% of your healing comes from just being in the room — the 30% is when you’re talking about your own stuff, but that might not even be as impactful. And I realized something…that might be the key. I think that’s what we’re all looking for in life. Someone to bear witness to our pain. We don’t need someone to fix it. Or say it’s going to be fine. Or pity us. We just need someone to see it. Someone to bear witness to our pain. Especially if the pain happened a long time ago, to go back, to uncover those painful moments and have a room full of people witness it. There is healing in that.

I am a fixer by nature. I want to rescue and fix and make a plan for change to get out of pain. Yet, that was not my role —in group therapy or in life — my role is to say, I see you in that pain. Maybe that’s it. Just, I see it. I am a witness to your pain…and I’m sorry. You take 57 strangers, and you realize that every single person there is carrying pain of some sort. Wounds. Hurt. Heartache. Some of them are scars that run deep. Some are fresh and still oozing with infection. But pain is pain. I left there and I swear I was seeing people differently. The cashier at Kroger. The guy flipping burgers at Five Guys. Every single human alive has a story and most likely has pain. It makes me want to listen more. I don’t need to fix or rescue. I need to listen and see people. I need to bear witness to their pain. It’s powerful.

It was intense.

They say the week there is equivalent to 8 months of weekly therapy. So, it’s no walk in the park. At times, it was uncomfortable…pushing me out of my comfort zone and into feelings that I haven’t felt in a while. Was it a breeze? No. Was it worth it? Yes. Because here’s the thing: I’m pretty certain that great things come after a bit of friction. Sometimes sitting in the group room, I felt uncomfortable and it felt hard. I think of it now like fire or friction. No one likes fire, but that’s how you get the refined beauty. No one likes the friction on the rock until the diamond appears. And I don’t mean it to be a cheesy analogy, but I mean it. It reminded me that most things in life that are worth it take work, and sometimes that work is uncomfortable in the process.


You aren’t allowed to talk about what you do for work. That is a true story. You arrive and you are given a name tag. Kate R. — that was all of me. You guys, I’ve been a part of the duo Jill and Kate for 15 freaking years. Do you know how awesome it was for people to get to know me? Me. Not “Kate” from Jill and Kate...or Kate the back-up singer for Kelly Clarkson. Me! Just me! This part was so helpful.  Literally, there are people that don’t know the difference between Jill and I, and honestly they don’t care to. When showing up at an event on my own people will ask me: “So, how are you guys?” Ummm…it’s just me here.

I felt seen.

This kind of piggy backs on my last point — but during my week at Onsite, I felt seen. I sort of think you can’t escape that. Seen, known, and loved. I think someone summarized those things that might be our three most basic desires and longings. I wasn’t known for accomplishments or seen because of what I did for work. I was seen as a human being not a human doing.

Also, I realized that so much of my life is work. And I love it — I love all that I get to do, but when people aren’t allowed to talk about work — you talk about who you are. Sometimes around the meal tables there would be awkward lulls in conversation because the natural flow of conversation NORM is to talk about work. Instead, I found myself asking the question “Do you have any hobbies? What do you do for fun?” A lot. It was awesome because you actually get to know people for who they are, not what they do. Yes, yes, yes. I’m trying to do this more. My way of asking people questions is now, “So what keeps you busy when you’re not {at the event or driving for Uber}?”

Another huge takeaway for me was that my job is to look after myself. Not in a “Only lookout for #1” way or a selfish manner at all, but that my role in life is taking care of and nurturing myself. I cannot control anyone else or any other situation, but I can take care of myself. A lot of my nature is to caretake — which my therapist also pointed out the difference between care-taking and caregiving. That care-taking is way more about you than it is the other person. Ummm…say what? Thanks Jim for the mic drop moment. Taking vs. giving. Dang, that was a lightbulb moment for me. But I realized that self-care is something that I need to focus on.

Meditation and the brain.

So here’s the deal. I have always heard meditating is good for you. I sort of thought it was more in the New Age vein, but heck, even the Bible talks about meditating…but I’ve never really done it, because I thought that it was something to do for fun or for spiritual reasons. During one of the morning sessions, they do a whole lecture about meditating and show you scientific scans of brains and meditation. I will not attempt to regurgitate medical information here, but let’s just say I now try to meditate every single morning. It’s like flossing but for your brain. Do it, do it, do it. I downloaded a few free apps that have guided mediations: Calm, Headspace and Simple Habit. So far, I like Calm the best.

I am so incredibly grateful for my time at Onsite. To the people that read this that spent the week with me — you know who you are, and I am so grateful to have you with me on my journey from here on out. To the ones who got me to Onsite — Jess, Miles and all the other friends I texted for advice — thank you! I am a different person because of you.

And to you, reader, who might be feeling scared or stuck or in need of the next step…reach out for help. If it’s a friend or a therapist or counselor or a week at Onsite — don’t underestimate the healing power of sharing your pain with others — that’s what we all need — we need a witness to the pain.

And so, I think that’s why the news of Kate Spade hit me so hard.

She was seen and known by billions of people. Had success. Money. Fame. But did she feel truly seen? Truly known? Truly loved. Did she need someone to bear witness to her pain? I don’t know and I never will. But hearing the news of her death was the punctuation mark to my week at Onsite that made it forever memorable.

My hope for you, dear reader, is that you feel seen, known and loved.

Much love,

Kate


Come Back To Me #31Days2016

Come Back To Me

I still remember your voice
How it carried how I heard it above all the noise
I still remember how you touched me
Made me wanna never leave
Made me wanna never leave

You made my soul come alive
like it was the first time
Like it was the first time I
Had ever breathed and I
I wanna feel Alive I wanna feel alive tonight
So come back to me
Do what I need and come back to me

I still remember your eyes
How they'd float across the room and stare into mine
I still remember how you held me
I could feel your heart beat
I can feel your heart beat

I will open up the door
Baby I'll leave on the light
We could try it once more
Maybe we can get right

(c) Jill and Kate, 2016. 

Thoughts From Gate C-9

I'm sitting at the airport thinking about how one choice, one action can cause a HuGE ripple effect. The flight that I'm on was supposed to be boarding in 10 minutes from gate C9 but there was weather in Florida that delayed my flight. It not only delayed my flight, but it also delayed the flight before mine too. My plane is going from Fort Lauderdale to Tampa then to Nashville (to pick me up) and then to Denver, Colorado.

But there was weather in Florida and that weather had a ripple effect. It delayed 3 flights and it got me thinking. For who is this ripple causing some dramatic change to their life? Is it causing them to miss something important? Was someone rushing somewhere to say goodbye to a loved one? Or witness a graduation or wedding and will now miss it? For me, right now as I sit in the food court, it doesn't affect much. I'll get to see my family about 2 hours later tonight than I thought annnnnd I just have to entertain myself longer in the airport (hello Vino Volo 🍷😉.)

I've been talking to some dear friends today about how one person in your life can have such a grand ripple affect in your life & in others lives. If everybody's life is affected by some sort of ripple (because we are all coexisting here) then what kind of ripple am I putting out there? What am I sending out from myself? What wave am I creating? Selfishness? Love? Fear? Hope? Hate? 

Sometimes I convince myself that one person, one idea, one voice isn't enough to cause a ripple...but I'm wrong! It's a trap! Don't fall for it like I have in the past. One person, one idea, one voice can start a ripple that can affect MILLIONS of people. 

So, ask yourself, what waves am I creating? What are people walking away with after colliding with my ripple? 

Just some thoughts from the Nashville airport as I wait at C9. xo -Kate

Inspire Nashville 2016

A couple nights ago we got to attend an event called Inspire Nashville 2016. It was an evening raising funds for Onsite Workshop's Possibilities Inc. & celebrating two honorees, Scott + Tracie Hamilton, for their humanitarian work in Nashville and around the world.  

We have so many things to say about the event that it's hard to even know where to begin.

Let's start with this. In promo for the event we heard things like, "You'll leave the event more inspired than when you came." We both thought, yeah...okay...sounds good. But, neither of us realized how DEAD ON that statement would be. We absolutely were blown away by the stories, the music and by learning from so many amazing friends in the room. 

It would be hard to find two better people to learn from than the award recipients, Scott + Tracie. Their humility and kindness literally radiates from their core. They are genuine in their love and that's something so rare to find. They've been examples for us...lights on the horizon to follow. They kept saying: "We're all in this together. We couldn't do it without you. It takes all of us to make a change. How can you make the world a better place?" Yes. We are all in this together. It takes ALL of us together. 

We heard our friend Bob share about needing friends and voices we trust in our lives. His joy and love will hit you smack in the face in the most lovely way and make you want to get right out of your seat to start making some change. We all need trusted voices in our lives. 

We heard so much GREAT music. Melinda Doolittle, Calvin Nowell, Emily West, Sheryl Crow. Goodness...the voices that filled the room took the event from one level to the next. It felt holy and spiritual...literally like God was in the room. We cried. Like, almost on the verge of ugly crying. 

It's a beautiful thing to see people come together with the main goal of going out afterwards and actively participating in making the world better for others. You don't need a title or a skill set to help those around you. If you hold your hand up to your chest and feel that thumping...that means that you've got what it takes to be a world changer. You're ready. You've got what it takes to make humanity better by showing up and saying "How can I help?" And what's awesome is that the people on the stage weren't doing it for the recognition or applause...they are doing things in secret, going unnoticed, in the background and on the sidelines...doing it quietly for the betterment of others. Bob said it best: "Humble voices carry the furthest."

After an event like that it makes us want to re-focus. It makes us want to slow the busy schedules and the meetings and look closely at ourselves and our business and say: How can we help make the world a better place? 

If you aren't familiar with Onsite, go check out what they do...we cannot say enough good things about them. And possibilities Inc helps people go to Onsite that wouldn't be able to afford it otherwise. 

Thank you Miles, Onsite Workshops + Possibilities Inc for the wonderful work you do. Thank you for gathering us all and pointing us in the right direction.

Oh and one more fun note. They had a fancy red carpet at the door which is usually reserved for VIP's and celebs but they wanted everyone to walk the red carpet and feel special and important. Isn't that fun? So we hammed it up and cheesed our way for the photographers like we knew what we were doing. Check out the pics below :)

Ok...we could probably write like 6 more pages about how amazing the evening was, but we'll just leave it here.

Hand to chest. Feel the beating. Go change the world...one person at a time.

Love you all!
j&k

Down By The River (#31DaysOfBlogging)

This blog is a part of a series #31DaysofBlogging … we are going through the year (2015) chronologically.

Booking was wacky for us this year because of the whole issue with getting fired and having our whole schedule change. Fun times!

In a perfect world, we would’ve played a bunch of J&K shows all over the place all year and seen each and every one of you in person, but we just couldn’t. Mostly the issue was that we didn’t plan on having so much open time and we didn’t book ahead, so opportunities were lost. But the other issue was that we really couldn’t afford to tour. We had to cancel a few shows (SORRY, we HATE doing that) in Michigan and the mid-west because we just couldn’t afford to lose money on them, which is what was going to happen. (Remember our $8 show!? hahaha, it is what it is.)

So, that being said, we didn’t have a TON of shows this year, but the ones that we did have were AWESOME

One of those AWESOME shows was right here in Tennessee...just about an hour outside of Nashville. It was at a festival called Riverfest and it was so much fun. 

We were stoked to have this show because it was close enough to where we live that there wasn’t a lot of overhead to get there plus, it was a really cool festival. So one day, we were looking at the Riverfest website trying to find directions or something (yes, we’re super prepared), and we noticed that our crazy talented friend, Charles Esten, was headlining the same night that we were playing! We texted him to tell him how pumped we were, and he said, “Come do a song with me!” 

Um, OK CHIP. WE WILL. (Chip, Charles...he goes by many names, but one of them that you may recognize, is Deacon Claybourne (Freakin Deacon)...the character that he plays on ABC’s show, Nashville. *swoon*

Chip is one of the kindest, most genuine people you will ever meet. Seriously. We do not say that lightly or flippantly. He’s wonderful. Also, he will make you laugh so hard, it will hurt. 

So we played our set at Riverfest (it was so windy, by the way!) and then headed over to Chip’s bus to work on a few tunes he had sent us. 

Side note: We recognize how freaking lucky we are here, guys. The friends and people we know in this town and in this industry who have opened doors for us, asked us to play with them, sing with them, open for them...we recognize how blessed we are to know these people and get these opportunities. We pinch ourselves on a regular basis.
This was us playing at Riverfest. What a beautiful backdrop!

This was us playing at Riverfest. What a beautiful backdrop!

So we got up on stage with Chip and his band, Sixwire, at Riverfest and we had the time of our lives. He is such an energetic performer. He gets everyone SO into it...and he never misses a note in the meantime. What a blast singing with him. Here’s a picture from that performance: 

What a night. We were thankful to only have a short ride home. Also, we were really hungry which seems to be a common theme after our shows...maybe we should be more prepared with snacks or something. But anyways, we went to the Wendy’s drive-thru on our way back home like the classy ladies that we are. :)

Can you say VALUE MENU?? Holla. 

Tomorrow on the blog, we’re back at home writing songs about worrying and how we quit it.

xo

j&k

Reality Show….Keeping Up With Jill and Kate (#31DaysofBlogging)

We know what you’re thinking...OMG, are our pals j&k going to be the new Kardashians?

Well, late last year we were approached by a production company about shooting our very own Jill and Kate Reality Show {insert applause here!} Ha! It seemed like a crazy adventure that we’d definitely be up for and so we began the process of developing the concept with them. It would be following our journey as independent artists. The production company we were working with is AMAZING. We seriously love them. The first step was that we began filming little pieces on our iPhones of behind the scenes stuff, normal every-day life stuff, etc. for the production company to piece together and get networks interested. Then, in early January we got a call saying: A NETWORK IS INTERESTED & THEY WANT TO SHOOT A SIZZLE REEL! Woohoo. Wait. What’s a sizzle reel? Hahaa. Exactly our thoughts.

Basically a sizzle reel is a mini, mini pilot episode. It meant that a network is interested enough to pay to have this made and we have a real shot at the show becoming a reality. Insert excitement. Insert fun freak out. Then they said, oh btw, it’s happening in a week!

So, a crew showed up. Put cameras in our cars. Put microphones on us. Moved furniture. Added lights...lots of lights and we shot a sizzle reel. You guys, IT WAS SO FUN. It was exhausting but energizing at the same time. We loved that the director let us do us. He wasn’t creating false drama or making us people that we weren’t. The shoot was supposed to be a “day in the life”...so in a day this is what we did:

-did some baking at home

-hair & make-up glam session

-had a fitting

-did a faux video shoot (yes, that’s why you never got a Rocky Road official video...we were faux shooting it for the reality show...and we had every intention of going back and finishing it but we never did. our bad.)

-did a photo-shoot

-had coffee with our friends Chip & Patty (Chip plays Deacon on Nashville)

-finalized a mix in the studio with our producer Dave Welsh

Yeah….all in a day! So, after we wrapped we felt good, that we did our best and knew that we’d just have to wait. Wait to see if the network liked us. Ugh, that part you guys was not so fun. Nothing like literally having your life up to be judged by random television producers. The waiting went on FOR MONTHS. Tune in tomorrow to see what the outcome has been...

Here are some never-before-seen-pictures from the sizzle reel shoot. Life is crazy y’all.

Love,

j&k

Just act natural. Sure, okay! This is totally the norm while fixing my morning coffee. 

Just act natural. Sure, okay! This is totally the norm while fixing my morning coffee. 

Move a little more this way….very complicated stuff happening during our fitting for the video shoot and photo-shoot with our talented friend Lesley. 

Move a little more this way….very complicated stuff happening during our fitting for the video shoot and photo-shoot with our talented friend Lesley. 

Interviews….talk, talk, talk...

Interviews….talk, talk, talk...

Valerie helped us for the shoot. She was awesome-sauce per usual.

Valerie helped us for the shoot. She was awesome-sauce per usual.

Glam time!

Glam time!

Jill's best side-eyed-smize with Joseph fixing up her hair.

Jill's best side-eyed-smize with Joseph fixing up her hair.

Studio vibes...

Studio vibes...

Mr. Dave Welsh ladies and gents...

Mr. Dave Welsh ladies and gents...

Interviews in-between faux video shooting...

Interviews in-between faux video shooting...

Video shooting...

Video shooting...

Took a bit to adjust to cameras being 5 feet from your face all day.

Took a bit to adjust to cameras being 5 feet from your face all day.

Coffee shop with Chip & Patty. 

Coffee shop with Chip & Patty. 

Fingers crossed…..

Fingers crossed…..