I am writing you today with an announcement that makes me a little weepy. Effective Tuesday, June 1, 2021, I will be dissolving the Lady Brain Presents LLC and stepping away from leadership/organizing responsibilities.
Many factors contributed to this decision, including a pandemic that wouldn't quit and a baby on the way. In short, there is not enough space or capacity in my body or brain to lead and grow this group the way I originally envisioned, and that’s not fun for me or fair to members. I've been pulled toward leadership my whole life, but now I feel my body and spirit telling me to explore some of the other ways I can be in service to community without sacrificing my physical and mental health or creative identity.
Part of me can't help but feel like a failure as this project comes to a close, but that's just capitalism trying to make me feel bad about myself, so I shall resist those feelings with lasting memories and great friendships. I know we did a wonderful thing here. And I know that good thing will grow into some other good thing. I have high hopes that everyone in the collective will continue developing relationships, resource-sharing, using the platform for good, and showing up for each other in a myriad of ways. I hope that by leaving the "reins" open for any and all to grab, the group will become a truer collective with many leaders and more of a blank canvas for everyone, which is the intended vision anyway.
I will be taking the name “Lady Brain” with me because it's a business/entity name that I invested much labor into and would love to keep it, along with its guiding principles, intact should I decide in the future to rework it back into the community (one-off festival, etc.). A new tentative name for the group is Creative Siblings Collective SD, so be on the lookout for potential member collaborations and showcases.
To all our members who participated, performed, organized, podcasted, produced, presented, wrote, designed, and so much more for Lady Brain Presents and all its endeavors, you are all my heroes. Special thanks to Jules Stewart @adventuresofjj who was instrumental in so much of the branding and design work and Cathryn Beeks who hosted one hell of a podcast and produced one hell of a festival.
I want to thank all of you in our community for showing up for our events, which means you showed up for our amazing members and the causes they care about. Your attendance not only demonstrated the value of supporting marginalized genders in the local creative community, it allowed our members to raise funds and awareness for organizations that most need our attention and support. I often think about the great waves of positive, loving, healing change that could come about so quickly in this world if only those with means lifted up marginalized artists with the resources they need to get their incredibly innovative and community-building ideas off the ground. I hope you all continue to find the artists who would flourish with that kind of support. In becoming an ongoing patron of their work, you will literally change the artist, the community, and the world for the better. Please be a part of that change. (Need an example? Check out Miki Vale's Soul Kiss Theater!)
I have no doubt this collective will grow into whatever it’s meant to become and I have so much faith that the folks who are meant to lead the way will do so with all the grace and creativity in the world. I hope we can count on your support through that transition. Thank you again for everything!
P.S. The Lady Brain Presents website will be coming down within the next week or two, so make sure you check out our Members page to find and follow all your favs on social media!
Thank you to Danielle Tucker for inviting me to come on her Pandemic-Proof Singer Series livestream show on Facebook. I'm always inspired by folks who are finding ways to keep creative communities together during pandemic times, and Danielle is a great example of that. In this episode, I talk about songwriting, Lady Brain Collective, We All We Got SD, and more. Catch the replay below and don't forget to follow Danielle's vocal coaching page to watch even more episodes from so many talented singers.
Video Description: Thumbnail is a press photo of Lindsay White, photo credit Sydney Prather. Video is a split screen zoom session, on the left is Danielle Tucker (wearing denim top seated in front of a mirror, plant, and beige and white tapestry), on the right is Lindsay White (wearing black top, seated in front of a colorful mountain tapestry that has hats hanging on top of it).
This month, Lady Brain Presents is interviewing some LGBTQ+ members about their experiences and perspectives being a part of the queer+ community. To read the full series, click here - my interview is this one.
Thanks to the team at She Fest for inviting me to represent Lady Brain Presents on their virtual panel of artists. It was a treat to share space with womxn creatives who are striving to keep communities together during this time. She Fest did such a wonderful job with their day-long festival - nothing but respect for their organization and leadership! Watch the panel below, around the 44:00 mark!
Hey friends. It's been a week, and I'm still not quite over the shock, exhaustion, anxiety, and pure joy that was our very first Lady Brain Fest. Here are a few special moments and memories I will never forget.
1. Cathryn Beeks And Her Little Pink Golf Cart, Too
Let me say it for the people in the back who haven't heard this yet. Lady Brain Fest would never have happened without Cathryn Beeks raising her hand at one of our earliest meet-ups and saying "Listen Local can host a festival at the ranch!" Together with her husband Jonny and our hosts at the San Dieguito Heritage Museum, they put in so much time and work into the nuts and bolts of this event. Everything from arranging A+ sound production to volunteers to vendors and pretty much everything else you can think of - Cathryn MADE.IT.HAPPEN. All hail the queen.
2. Local Media Love
Y'all, I've been hammering out indie press releases for a long time. Hundreds of hours and emails spent and sent over the course of my career. Sometimes I'm lucky enough to get 5-10 media hits per event or album release, and I'm thankful for every single one. The PR world is not for the thin-skinned. This was so different. We received so much local press for this event, i couldn't even keep up with it! We were on the morning and evening news several times. We were on the radio several times. We were PLAN A in San Diego Citybeat's “If I Were You" column. George Varga from the Union Tribune mentioned our festival in a roundup of some of the biggest touring acts to come through San Diego. Full-length interviews in the San Diego Troubadour, San Diego Reader, and Pacific Magazine. This was not only exciting from a promotional aspect as a young organization, but it proves my theory that there is something interesting, exciting, important, and newsworthy about women-identifying creatives working together in their community to lift each other up and to create (and promote) an event so rare as a 100% female-fronted festival. What's more, this press helps our members build their respective press portfolios, which helps move them along in their careers and exposes them to new opportunities. I'm so thankful to our members who helped make this event look good, and who went out of their way to facilitate and participate in press opportunities for this event. Special thanks to Olive Creative Strategies for their additional support! FURTHERMORE, I could not be more grateful for our local photographer and videographer friends who came out to document this experience. If I ever have kids, I want to tell them all about this day, and because of our photographer/videographer friends, I can show them, too.
3. The Best Ever Meeting in the Ladies Room
Let me preface by saying: my bad, we could have definitely used 1-2 more porta potties. We had no idea what the turnout would be, so we made our best guess. However, I found a silver lining to my (long, but not tooooo long) wait in line to use the restroom. There were a few women ahead of me in line and they were talking out loud, not holding back, about epidurals and other general being-a-woman stuff. It didn't matter that a man and a young boy were in earshot. AND. I. WAS. HERE. FOR. IT. No lie, this might have been my favorite moment of the entire day. I couldn't have been prouder to have helped create a space where women could talk about all the horrible, painful shit we go through and get shushed over. Next year the lines will be shorter, promise, but please promise me you will keep up the real talk.
4. People Helping. Just to Help.
An event like this has so many moving parts and requires so many helping hands. I tried to write down as many names as possible and I pretty much cleared Target out of thank you cards, but just know, if I somehow fail to get one to you, I will never run out of thanks for all those who so generously lent their time, skills, services, money, etc. to help make this event happen. Everything was built, shared, designed, streamed, organized, decorated, donated, crafted, cooked, served, and created with love. That translated into some pretty special energy at the event.
5. Christine Lafontant Playing Bass
In a moving Ladies Rock Camp-meets-Lady Brain Fest moment, I was so thrilled to watch as Becca Jay invited my friend Christine Lafontant up on stage to rock the bass for the band's final song. Christine has always been one of the coolest, kindest, most hilarious lady bosses I know, and she raised the bar this year when she joined Ladies Rock Camp (a fundraiser for Rock n Roll Camp for Girls San Diego) and picked up the bass for the first time ever. To see her confidently rocking out with Becca, Mikayla, and Paige (on her second-ever gig!) in front of the Lady Brain Fest crowd was a definite highlight.
6. Tori Roze Putting On a Writing, Singing, and Performing Clinic
Do people even know what a treasure we have in Tori Roze? The killer pipes, the funky band, the instruments that appear as if from nowhere, the sultry stanky goodness oozing out of every pore? DO THEY EVEN KNOW? I was a stress-case for months leading up to the festival, and I was a stress-case throughout the festival, right up until the very moment I saw Tori smack a vibraslap on her thigh during the last set of the day. That was the moment I finally relaxed and realized I was having a great time and that we did a great thing. All hail the queen. Yeah, I know I said it about Cathryn, but this is the kinda group that has a lot of effin' queens.
7. This Photo and All the Feels it Gives Me
Sometimes I joke that Lady Brain Collective was born out of my desire to make real friends, which is kind of true, but it goes a bit deeper than that. As a human, as a woman, as an artist, as someone who struggles hardcore with anxiety and dabbles in depression, as someone with a smartphone in 2019, I know loneliness. I know isolation. I know envy. I wanted Lady Brain to help build the kind of community social media tends to rob us of. A community of shared success and unfiltered real-life friendship in the real-life world. Good people and great moments. I look at this picture and think to myself: nailed it. I also look at this picture and think to myself: I have friends!
8. Kiddos and Doggos
I know some things about the Fest might change as we grow, but I really hope we can stay committed to the dog-and-family-friendly approach. Thanks to everyone who brought their cute kids and friendly pets to add to the good-time vibes!
9. This Souvenir Snap Back
With less than a week to go before the festival, I started to kick myself for running out of time and not having some sort of souvenir available for the festival. Shirts seemed like a daunting turn-around, what with all the sizes and trying to accomplish an order during the Fourth of July holiday. Enter Jules Stewart and her lightning-speed design skills as well as the equally fast T-shirt Mart. Before I knew it, there were 50 "Do No Harm. Take No Shit" hats loaded up in my car and on their way to Encinitas! I've always loved that phrase, and it turns out I'm not the only one - I'm so happy the hats were such a hit! (Want yours? They will be available at our August Community Gathering!)
10. Women's Rights = Human Rights
When I started giving serious thought to the Lady Brain Collective brand, I had a long chat with myself about much my own personal and political experiences would be a factor. It's definitely not required that all members think exactly like me (that would be boring anyway), but I think it's important for people to know as much as they can about those running the organizations that they support (or don't). I want to be transparent about the fact that Lady Brain's primary mission is to lift up and support women-identifying creatives in this community. But I also want to be clear in my understanding that this mission can't be fully realized without zooming out and asking ourselves why we need that support in the first place (cough, patriarchy). That conversation can't happen without zooming even further out and thinking about ALL those whose best efforts to survive and thrive are systemically thwarted by hate, ignorance, bigotry, greed, etc. This collective is about people actively taking care of each other, period. I am still learning and growing, and I will always strive to do better, to spread love, and to combat injustice with the time and resources I have. In that spirit, I will be donating the money my band earned from Lady Brain Fest online ticket sales to RAICES, a non-profit agency that promotes justice by providing free and low-cost legal services to underserved immigrant children, families, and refugees. Because how much fun can a festival really be when our asylum-seeking neighbors are enduring so much hardship just a few miles away? There are some deeply disturbing problems affecting this country and planet. We can't single-handedly solve them all in a day, but we also can't ignore them away. What we can do is lead with our hearts ask ourselves "what can I do just a little bit better for the world today?" And tomorrow, ask again.
Thank you to everyone for making the first annual Lady Brain Fest a success! Hope to see you next year!
Thanks to Rosemary Bystrak and SoundDiego for reminding folks about Lady Brain Fest today! Read the feature here! Online ticket sales have closed, but tix will still be available at the door for cash purchase!
Thank you to Rosemary Bystrak for including a shout-out to Lady Brain Fest on the San Diego: Dialed In blog. I love her writing and her blog and feel super grateful to be on her radar!
Thanks to Seth Combs and the folks at San Diego CityBeat for including Lady Brain Fest in their list of cool things to do this week and as PLAN A on their “If I Were You" column! Check out the writeup here and purchase your pre-sale tickets here - online sales end Saturday at 3pm.
Thanks to the San Diego Reader for featuring me and our upcoming Lady Brain Fest in their event roundup. Appreciate the love (though we were ALL headliners!)
Thanks to Edible San Diego for featuring Lady Brain Fest lineup and info on their site! Read the full write-up here! Pre-sale tickets are still available online until Saturday 7/6 at 3pm.