Happy Monday, folks!

Today in Jeff Goins’ Writing Challenge he encourages us to shine the spotlight in a different direction. Forget our own ideas and posts today, and highlight the work of others. This came as a huge relief today, because…

1. I didn’t have to brainstorm new material, or quickly finish work in progress.

2. I can introduce some of my favorite sites to readers who may be stumbling upon my blog for the first time!

My choices today are in 2 different categories: Singer/Songwriter and Music Education. Some are a little more abstract than others, but I promise they are relevant!

Singer/Songwriter

1. Tara-Leigh Cobble – Tara-Leigh is a singer/songwriter/author/speaker in Greenville, SC…right in my backyard! I don’t know her personally, but a friend of mine is in a Bible study with her, and suggested that I follow her on Twitter because we have a lot of the same career interests. So I did, but not until recently did I realize my friend’s point; Tara-Leigh is actually living her life as a singer/songwriter/author/speaker, and I would love to do the same! Her blog (and her music!) is a true testament to how she lives her creative life and highlights her life as an artist. I just bought her book Here’s to Hindsight and literally can’t wait for it to appear on my doorstep. Check her blog/site out if you are looking to be inspired!

2. JillandKate – If you are really looking to see what it’s like to live a rockstar life, these are the two to follow. Jill and Kate are Kelly Clarkson’s backup singers (sweet gig, right?), AND they have their own little duo group on the side. Their blog highlights their journey touring with Kelly Clarkson and working on their own music. Each month (particularly on the 17th!), in a series they call, “Songs on the 17th,” they upload a video of one of their songs to share with their followers. What a great idea! It not only gets their followers excited to hear new music each month, but it gives them a chance to promote and share their music with their ever-growing fan base.

Music Educators

1. Tom West – Tom is a music educator whose blog has been named in the Top 75 Music and Arts Enthusiasts. He covers a wide variety of topics, from pedagogy, repertoire, to professional development, and more. It’s a go-to blog for me, regardless if I am looking for specific information or just wandering.

2. MusicEdMajor.net – This is a great site for music education students, mostly because it is run by students studying music education! It’s an incredibly valuable resource, and a great way to further enhance your teaching career before it even starts! If you are a music education student, you MUST check this site out. And not to mention my own work, since that is breaking the rules of the challenge, but you may find a few guest posts from someone whose name is similar (or identical) to mine….!

3. Leading Notes – This is a relatively new online magazine covering issues in music education. I love it because it offers the ideas of several music educators on one particular topic in an issue. It is also a great place to contribute your own ideas to a topic when they are taking submissions for their next issue. Again, breaking the rules slightly, but I know someone a lot like myself who has contributed to some past issues, and really enjoyed reflecting and developing a stance on their topics. Another great resource for education inspiration.

So there you have it! I know I broke the rules slightly, but they really are my favorite resources out there!