Post-Pandemic Strategies

Moving Forward Post Pandemic No Going Back To Normal

Looking back to the end of 2019, it was the usual end of the year New Year’s Eve celebrations. Everyone was making their New Years resolutions, planning for 2020. Who would have thought our world would have been hit with such an unexpected deadly disease called the Coronavirus aka Covid 19? Upon the approach of January and February 2020, folks were going about their daily activities, some were experiencing colds or flu-like symptoms but very mild things that everyone thought was just a part of the usual winter season. My husband and I attended a ceremony in Jacksonville, FL to receive our honorary doctorate from St. Thomas Christian University in February — and made it back home safely. Then March 2020 rolled around and “in like the March winds” flowed the airborne pandemic which quickly moved all over the world within a matter of seconds. The whole world was flipped upside down, quarantined and unable to visit, touch or hug their loved ones. Worldwide hospitalizations and deaths ensued; while businesses closed — some permanently. Even the music world came to a screeching halt. Who knew?

During that period of shutdown, many of us realized that something happened to get our attention and we started to strategize. Virtual performances, and opportunities surfaced. The music platform was on somewhat of an even situation for both major and indie artists who shifted into more of an online presence. Churches services, trainers with their exercise routines, social media trainings and a lot other stuff suddently became more “front and center”. This was an aha moment of sorts. There’s no more going back to what we considered “normal’ everyday routines. This was a shaking up and if you think you’re going to go back to the way it was, you’re going to be in limbo and miss the mark big time. God doesn’t want us to stay “normal” and sometimes there comes a situation that “shakes” us up to awaken us who are asleep at the wheel. In the 1999 movie “The Matrix” — the choice came down to the red pill or the blue pill. The red pill was the choice to learn a potentially unsettling or life-changing truth; while choosing the blue pill represented the desire to remain contented in ignorance. Which would you choose?

Sounds of Imani strategized after Gerald’s Covid illness in March 2020. He spent a month in the hospital with blood clots in his legs (caused by Covid) along with breathing problems which forced him to be on oxygen. I refused to let the hospital put him on a ventilator which would have surely been a death sentence. When he came home, through much prayer and faith, he got better. We strategized to see how we could launch our church and music ministries forward respectively. We finished a single track called “Come Praise the Lord” including a music video with youth dancers (which were hard to find during the early part of the pandemic due to shut downs). The youth dancers were from Texas and were delighted to be a part of the music video launch. Our purpose for the song was to uplift people who had been devastated during the pandemic. In addition, we created a short 35 minute film “From Darkness to Light: a c19 Survival Story with the help our videographer friend. Church services and bibles studies continued online until we were able to convene again in person. Through the online services we gained connections with two churches in India and one in Kenya.

So, I ask the question: How did you strategize during the pandemic? Why or why not? What do you feel the pandemic changed all over the world? What changed in the music business for indie artists?

Sounds of Imani Talks about Vision and Motivation

Sounds of Imani is an indie contemporary gospel recording artist in Detroit, Michigan (USA) whose musical harmony brings joy, healing and inspiration to listeners of all ages.  Imani is an African word meaning faith and this artist definitely lives up to its name.  Sounds of Imani was formed in 1996 out of a vision to provide the music world with a distinct sound of excellence and quality musical expertise; as well as to develop and create positive, uplifting, and encouraging music.  Gerald & Carol, the versatile husband and wife team  (along with their band) thank God for longevity and total submission to biblical principles.

This artist has continued to remain focused on pursuing the goals they have set forth.   Maintaining a self-contained unit certainly isn’t easy but Sounds of Imani realizes that working with a unit of individuals prompts commitment, respect, and loyalty (extremely important).   Sounds of Imani has worked with various musicians over a period of time and is still going strong with longtime backing musicians of  many years.

When we think about the term “vision” we consider its meaning to be somewhat centered around “strategic forecasting”.  Although it has not yet come to pass,  people can still plan with the expectation of it coming to pass.  Sound familiar?  Faith is defined as being “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (KJV – Hebrews 11:1).  In other words, faith is the foundation on which all our hopes for the future are built; the evidence of things not seen means that our faith in action shows we are not driven by what currently appears before us.  Without faith we would limit ourselves to a narrow minded concept of what we see with a “worldly” or  “carnal sight”.

But what about motivation?  Simply this,  “I know it’s going to happen, therefore I’m going to do all that I can to prepare myself for the fulfillment of that vision”.  We must be ready to walk in the door once the door opens.  Another great passage of scripture also states, “For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak; though it tarry wait for it, because it will surely come” (KJV – Habakkuk 2:3)

What do you suppose keeps indie music artists going?  What motivates them?  Should you be a visionary?  What does it take to reach the goals you have set?  Do you encourage or inspire other music artists?

Take a look at the interview below and let us know what you think.