Originally published April 8, 2014 – 11:32 AM on Examiner.com and World News.
It’s intriguing what you can discover when your heart is opened and you release your mind of its limited expectations. It’s fascinating what you learn about yourself…and others when your inhibitions sail freely across the winds of discovery. It is when you allow an experience to leave an indelible impression on you, rather than molding it to an expectation, that a release of immeasurable value is unearthed. This is the way I experienced the 13th Live In The Vineyard event (LITV).
What is Live In The Vineyard? Simply stated it is an exclusive and intimate experience with music. The stage is set in the vineyards of Napa, California among some of the finest wines and wineries, with some of the most renowned chefs serving delectable offerings. It’s a place where some of today’s top performing artists admit things like, “This is the first time I’ve played this song, ever!” And it is a statement that is repeated often, by many of them. Sometimes they admit, “That was scary!” like Colbie Callait did after playing her new single, ‘Try’ for the first time live at an exclusive event for guests hosted by Sutter Homes.
Sometimes you hear new icons like Passenger, admit intimately personal tales of his ongoing struggle to quit smoking while intro’ing a song. He further disclosed after playing it that he felt every lyric from beginning to end. Live In The Vineyard is a place where up and coming or aspiring artists discover their own relevance and traction in the industry. Bands like Alternate Routes, who’ve played clubs, pubs and smaller stages for years, but left the Uptown Theatre after their set to a thunderous standing ovation.
This is the type of experience you cannot purchase. It’s a gift and is intentionally meant to be so. After speaking to the co-founders of the event, Claire Parr and Bobbii Hach-Jacobs, they emphasized that the experience they’ve created is niche. It’s intended to be a place for foodies, hipsters and music enthusiasts as well as wine connoisseurs alike to bind around a central theme; the fusion of their passion. It’s a dynamic fusion that results in a lavishly packaged presentation for those gathered to enjoy over the course of three days. Its a gracious and intimate offering which is felt by all, from the a- list artists and bands who perform with their soul bare, to the grand prize winners who utilize their creative energy to be granted attendance. It’s a feeling that even extends to the sponsors and donors whose generosity make the event possible.
It could be said that you can’t come close to the LITV experience and not leave without a fever, an incurable appetite for more. Its heat burns in your chest, creating a hunger that growls from your abdomen, its perspiration demands others take notice. It infects you with an insatiable desire to share with people; to encourage them to get as close to the music, passion, that residue it leaves in your soul, as humanly possible.
Over the next few days I hope to give you a taste of the 13th LITV experience through reviews, one on one interviews with some the artists, as well as visual recollections. I left the vineyards of the Napa Valley refreshed by passion, and whether you are able to attend Live In The Vineyard at a future event or not, I hope you catch the fever as well.