With Muddy Roots 2016 in the books for another year and a month passed I have taken some much needed time to absorb what has become a mainstay of spirituality, healing, growth, development and fellowship with my friends.
This year to summarize was a "transformative and evolutionary" state for many of us I believe. What began just a few short years ago with a seeded dream has blossomed and grown into a way of life and living for many of us. We travel with the current and undertows of our daily lives of suburbia, highways, intersected stage appearances, backroom deals and random overnight couch surfing for that one time each year that breathes the newest of life into our bodies. Where we shake from our daily grind and push ourselves to return home to that hallowed field.
It's often hard to put into words why we do what we do to an outsider. To say "it's because of the music" is really just a hollow bunch of words to someone that hasn't witnessed the magic. To step through the door of the Vinyl Bunker on 5th in downtown Nashville amidst the heavily manicured and produced steel buffet and concrete jungle is to know an oasis within a desert. To know a quenchable thirst when clean water is scarce. For the people that Muddy Roots holds closest, the music and culture are a synonymous blood that drive both the fan and the festival.
Take for instance the Vinyl Bunker, this is a gem. It isn't easy to find that gem though. Through countless hours of sifting and panning, to almost lose it through your muddied fingers as you pour over samples of bland meaningless earth. You could walk by that place hundreds of times and not know of it's existence or the people who call it home; let alone the man that conceived the idea. It is a gem - and then, when the light catches it just so the majesty of mother nature and the light diverge in a confluence of glory that sees the music reach out to just one or two people. Those people have discovered the gem and it becomes theirs. This is the organic growth of the brand, this is what Nashville was built on - Discovery and the true explorer spirit, coupled with the pioneering drive of a musician that isn't famous.
For me, that's what this festival is about. It's about connecting with each other and finding a way back everytime, not because you need it - because we all need it. We heal each other, we share, we love, we are loved, we give, we build, we grow and we make music doing it. Too often in life we forget the reason behind why we do anything, do it because it brings joy to the world, to others and least importantly yourself. We have found that at Muddy Roots, within those words and for the simple reason of the music we make - this is our purpose in life.