Monday, March 15, 2010

Judy Whiting: A Personal Reflection

This is one piece I didn't want to have to write. Not because I didn't want to share some thoughts about a friend. The problem is that sadly, we lost this friend today...those of us who shared her determined optimism that she would make it through this setback were very shocked and saddened.

I first met Judy Whiting virtually, on the Nashville Music Pros networking site, where I learned we had much in common. I met her personally for the first time at the Radio Free Nashville studios. She had accompanied John Heinrich, who was being interviewed by George Adams on "Geo On The Radio", the show that preceded mine at the station at the time. I will always remember when she came out of the studio, hugged me and said, "You're just as pretty as your picture!"

Judy became a friend and encourager to me, as she was to many musicians in Music City. Of course, Nashville at times can seem like one big "small town". At John Heinrich's steel guitar demonstration at the Country Music Hall of Fame, through Judy I met singer/songwriter Garry Jackson, who it turned out had a couple of other friends on Radio Free Nashville who I hadn't yet met at that time. Garry, Steve Haggard and Kimberly King have since become very dear friends to me. We're all connected. Judy was a great connector.

Judy and I shared a couple of fun lunch dates together. Besides a little bit of "girl talk" here and there, the one topic that consistently came up with us--and which we were both in strong agreement on--was when it came to dealing with musicians in the course of the business, the relationships and friendships were much more valuable and important than all the musical politics.

I'm comforted by my pastor's reminder this Sunday to us that "to be absent in the body is to be present with the Lord."

Go rest high, girl. As you always told us, keep the sunshine in your heart.