What piece of art changed your life? How did it affect you?
There are so many pieces of art, music, and literature that have changed and shaped my life! I would just have to grab one of so many out of the ether. One song that really affected me exemplifies artistic struggle and the power of art—recognized in its time or not—to reach beyond each age and era. "Vincent" by Don McClean is a masterpiece in its beautiful poetic description of the actual paintings of Van Gogh, its conversational quality, and its heartbreaking sadness about the lack of understanding people had for Van Gogh's body of work (during his lifetime). I've had several experiences where I was writing songs ahead of some of the events in my life that the songs ended up being about. I truly believe when we are open to the creative flow all sorts of wisdom can come through...if you think of our brains as our "hard drives" then you can imagine the creative spirit as being something that comes only when "online." I know Van Gogh lived long before computers...but his bandwidth as far as the creative spirit must have been pretty amazing!
As a songwriter, Beth Nielsen Chapman has been a fixture on the country and pop charts, penning hits for the likes of Willie Nelson, Lorrie Morgan, and Faith Hill. She's also faced her own share of adversity, losing her husband to cancer in 1994 and battling breast cancer in 2000. As the title of her new CD, Back to Love, implies, she's come through it all with a renewed sense of purpose. Chapman plays Ramshead in Annapolis on May 24th.