The Beale Street Blues Boy, best known as B.B. King, died in May, leaving behind a legacy of more than half a century of popular music. Top Rhythm & Blues songs included titles like “The Thrill is Gone” and “Hummingbird”. Although his music was steeped in the sounds of Mississippi, he enjoyed playing other genres, like Jazz.
For most of his career, B.B. King carried a story with him perhaps larger than his music. One night, he was performing at a dance in Arkansas. While there, a fight broke out over a woman named Lucille. In the scuffle, a kerosene stove was knocked over, setting fire to the building. Everyone, including B.B. ran outside, but when he realized his favorite guitar was left behind, he risked his life to run back in and rescue it. He barely escaped death that day. The incident had such a huge impact on him, that he named his guitar Lucille. He said it would always remind him not to do a crazy thing like fight over a woman. Through out the rest of his career, every Gibson guitar he owned was named Lucille.
We all can recall experiences in our life that marked our history forever. It’s important to share what we’ve learned from those periods of time. Some stories will encourage others to push forward, while others will discourage the hearer from making the same mistake we did.
Sometimes we’re hesitant to tell our story, or even the stories of generations before us. We’re afraid we might tell it wrong or we’ll be misunderstood. Good news! There’s help for us. We can learn from the best of story tellers. If you listen to what they say, you’ll discover the story is pretty simple, but they’ve added a little color to turn an ear their way.
Decide what your story is. Add some color. Then be sure to tell it. Someone is needing to hear what you have to say.
“He commanded our ancestors to teach them to their children,
so the next generation might know them—even the children not yet born,
and they in turn will teach their own children.
So each generation should set its hope anew on God,
not forgetting his glorious miracles and obeying his commands” Psalm 78 5b – 7 NLT
My spotlight artist this week is Jim Porterfield. He paints in vivid colors.
Jim was born on the Marine Corps Air Base in Yuma, Arizona, where his father was stationed. His family then moved to Saint Louis, Missouri, and from there to Poplar Bluff, Missouri. After his parents divorced, he moved with his mother to Pocahontas, Arkansas. He, his wife Robin, and four children now reside in Jonesboro, Arkansas.
Daydreaming often got the best of him as a child. Needing somewhere to go, his wild imagination continuously made its way onto notebooks and homework, or anything else available to him at the moment.
Jim has no formal training, but believes he was born an artist. His studio is at home, where he spends many evening hours, allowing his love for brilliant and bright colors to flow onto canvas. Each unique imagery finishes true to his own style.
He feels every work of art is an exciting story waiting to be expressed from his mind, to the eyes, heart, and soul of its viewer. He hopes his creations are focal points that engage and enhance their surroundings.
Please enjoy Jim’s paintings presented jazz style: