Shakura S'Aida's Farewell To John Mays
I just woke up and found out that John Mays had passed. My first thought was to bury my head under the covers and sleep for 1 million years, but that would not be honouring John Mays...
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I just woke up and found out that John Mays had passed. My first thought was to bury my head under the covers and sleep for 1 million years, but that would not be honouring John Mays. Over 10 years ago, when no one knew me and no one would hire me to sing at their festival, two bandleaders gave me the opportunity to sing with them, Bill King and Lance Anderson.
From Bill, I learned how to lead a band of eight musicians and yet how to always play with them as an equal; in Lance's band, the Ray Charles Tribute, I learned how to share a stage with a professional and how to enjoy doing it each and every time.
John Mays was a master on stage; he taught me always to be "on" when on stage, never to let down your energy or your audience.
No matter how he was feeling or what had gone on before the show, once he stepped on stage, he had one purpose and one purpose only: to enjoy what he was doing and to make sure that everybody else knew it and enjoyed it too!
He had such joy on stage that was not only infectious; it was endless and seamless. He pushed me to stay on point, to connect with everyone onstage and in the audience, to dance with abandon and to NEVER take this life we are blessed to spend in music for granted.
I learned so much from this man, and I’m grateful for each and every lesson. My heartfelt prayers of light are with Tina, Kenny, his Fathead brothers-in-arms and all of his friends and family.
Good night John, I will never sing 'Georgia' again unless it is to you.... Rest in Peace, Love & Music
– Shakura S’Aida, Facebook, Dec. 11 reflecting upon the death of John Mays a year ago.