Thy Movement To Shine A New Light Over An Old Reputation

It will be one year and four months since I put the liquor down. It was a hazy decision at first, because of the most known reputation La Crosse, let alone Wisconsin, is know for in our culture. People would debate about if it was alcohol abuse or not, due to the direction I took, cut dry cold turkey. I know many alcoholics who do not have the strength for this, true, but with education in the psychology field, my own spiritual strength, and experiences with family members who were also alcoholics, I conquered.

I emphasis with this, unless you were a roommate of mine or a close personal friend who would see me at the bars on almost a night to night basis, or a co-worker that I would open up to about being drunk at work when ethically I wasn’t suppose to be, then you cannot make any judgements. I have always had a strong spiritual strength within me with all the shit I been through in my life, regardless of growing up away from the organized religions, churches, mosques, etc… I can’t explain it, but I can promise you it’s there. Maybe it’s Grandpa G still walking with me as my guardian since the day I was born. I don’t have solid answers, but I have my own reasons and beliefs from my past experiences.

Just like other non-drinkers and well diverse individuals, I was getting frustrated with the reputation of La Crosse and Oktoberfest. I couldn’t see past beyond the stage of duality of our culture, so to speak, but slowly I met a few new people who had similar beliefs and stronger sobriety habits and my vision started to change.

For a few months now, I been trying to shine a new light for the La Crosse area and the people who I feel are making a big enough impact to make that reputation change. As bars start to struggle with business, restaurants & art are rising, as well as, a few local celebrities are, as they impact the country with their own style, intentional or not. I wanted to shine some light on those who I look up too in one aspect or another, which a few I can call close friends.

I.M.P.A.C.T. Recordz LLC
CEO/Recording Artist Mario Street

Recording Artist: Mario Street

Well, Recording Artist is just one aspect of this multi-talented individual. Since I am a good friend of his, his story is like a broken record in my eyes, but I am sure he feels the same with me, as we both come up from two separate worlds and joint forces and a bond for the purpose of shining a positive light on the youth and the world.

Once a lost soul coming up on drugs, prison, and street gang activities in Chicago, Mario is now sober/cleaned with his head on straight and calls La Crosse home where he raises his four children.

Not only is his expertise in Hip-Hop music, but also taking up videographer/photographer, amongst other entitlements for his record label. He is currently working on a documentary on the three-time Super Bowl champion, Antonio Robinson.

Radio DJ Noah, Me, Reed Grimm, & Brittany Stylez

American Idol Finalist: Reed Grimm 

Probably the most known local celebrity, other than Jennifer Livingston. He was an American Idol Finalist in Season 11.

He is one of a few tri-state area artists who has branched out on a national level, with Tim Olstad from Winona tailing him on last seasons “The X Factor.”

Reed currently resides in the Twin Cities & trails to California to continue to pursue his dreams and fills his schedule with solo performances, his band Shoeless Revolution, and plenty of charity/organization activity with the likes of Food Wafer and Habitat of Humanity. Reed also has started his own positivity gig with “Massive Amounts of Goods” which brings awareness and positive impacts to diversity.

Grand River Singers

VH1’s “Off Pitch” Stars: Grand River Singers

Or as I would like to call majority of the veteran members, my old karaoke gang. Back when it seem my world was small, these group of friends, especially members, Drew, Aubrey, Tim, & Rob, were one of my first group of friends when I just came home from Iraq in 2007 & move to La Crosse, WI.

That is also the time I would step away from a well known fear from “stage fright” and start singing karaoke and six months later, I would have started my performing arts in drag at UW-L.
Tim and Rob, big or small, had always been supporters and mentors in the field of arts, as well as, a friendship even outside of the public domain.

The Grand River Singers continue on their performance journeys to the likes of Walt Disney World in Florida and has finally branched away from the county and state fairs in Wisconsin. 

News Anchor: Jennifer Livingston

Last, but very least, we have our local news anchor who blasted into International news after standing her ground, live, from a local negative Nazi who had expressed his own bullied opinion on how today’s society should be imaged to the younger generations. Shortly after the segment, word got out and the episode went viral rapidly. Her award: a trip to the Ellen DeGeneres show and also a trip to the Caribbean, thanks to Ellen.

Jennifer doesn’t let the exposure go to her head. She is just as humble and collected as she was before the unnecessary letter reached her hands and on air as a news segment.

I will leave you with her special commercial featuring Ellen and Matthew Perry.

Not only does La Crosse, Wisconsin, have these bright individuals in the area, but as I get out and explore the natural habitats of the bluffs and Perot State Park, I also see a change in the younger generations in their lifestyles. I also have many resources that express the bar businesses downtown and it’s just not the same or as habitable as it was in my earlier twenties. I just hope I can make a positive impact like the individuals I have posted, along with many others on a similar train as me.

Until Next Time….

"Fallen Angel" Part One (Short Story)

Lust. Love. Ares. Aphrodite.

There’s a fallen angel residing on this Earth’s dirt. Humanity who is blinded by the naked eye will not be able to discover such beauty that hides behind broken wings, shattered horns, in the world of grey. She’s not like the rest of the crowd, she adds her own color to this world. She dares to paint with purples, greens, and yellows, instead of such boredom of black and white. She dares to go against the crowd, no matter the force against her.

This fallen angel also will imprint her presence with her smiles. Smiles you can’t erase from your memory bank. In ways she has imprinted herself into your heart; but don’t be fooled. 

Don’t be fooled on this fallen angel, who has no name, by her kindness and make it more than what it is. Don’t be fooled by her silence and make it what it isn’t. She fights her own demons within her heart, mind and soul. She’s fallen from corruption in her heart.

Everyday, the fallen angel questions if she is whether related to the Goddess of Despair, Eris, or in relations of the Goddess of Love, Aphrodite. She prays daily that the heart of Aphrodite remains close to her as loyalties of Ares and Hades are determined to torture her own pretty, little heart. 

It’s an everyday battle, an everyday chaos in her heart, but at the end of the day, she continues to paint her visionary world in that heart, along with her own mind and soul. The primer paint continues to be love to balance the fixture from the rest of the chaos.

Someday the ying to her yang will reveal himself. Not to take over the creation of this art of love, but to add his own colors to it. His unconditional love will endure, even while in the shadows of Hades whelms.

In return, her angelic aura transforms to its rightful stage, as it reflects the sun. He will also have the ability to reform her horns into a halo crown that sits perfectly on top of her head and help strengthen her weathered wings, so she returns to the crystal blue skies once more to return to her cloud of calling.

All in results of the power of true unconditional love and the presence of her soul mate’s patient eyes, as she returns the same patience and virtue of morality and ethics.

(To Be Continued…)

©H.M. Gautsch

Song of the Week Segment #2 – "Proof of Life" by Scott Stapp

This week’s song of the week segment goes out to Scott Stapp with a single from his sophomore solo album, “Proof of Life.” I have an edgier side of me and love alternative rock, although I don’t express it enough like I do with the Hip Hop & Country genres in music. I grew up with Creed being my all-time favorite rock band, thanks to my oldest brother introducing me to the band with their, “My Own Prison” album. Since then, I have been sunken into their music whether the band performs as Creed, Alter Bridge, or Scott Stapp, himself. Scott Stapp still provides good quality messages in his music, even if he isn’t on the top 40 as often as Creed was back in the late 90s, early 2000s. The lyrics in this song also reminds me of the ancient quote from philosopher, Socrates, “An unexamined life is not worth living.”

 Make sure to buy Scott’s sophomore album on ITunes, on his website, or at a store near you and catch him soon on his upcoming tour!

Since You Said Goodbye (Poetry)

There’s been an emptiness,
Inside of me.

It’s hard to explain it.
I should be over you by now.
It’s been over two years,
But my heart continues to disavow.
Loved ones come and go.
Because I can’t seem to find,
What I’m searching for.
Discovering you with a new lover.
I’ve tried,
But I can’t shed a new exposure,
From this old pain, this torture.
This treasure keeps digging deeper,
In some sand, off an island.
I’d go and hunt for my own gem,
But I seem to have lost the map.
Since you said goodbye,
I seem to have lost my pride.
I’m still waiting for,
You to come through the door.
My heart is too young to die,
But it hasn’t been able to revive,
I’ve force myself to mingle, 
But I haven’t been able, 
To take a bite,
Instead I only nibble.
Since you said goodbye.
If only you knew of the heart,
You borrowed.
How it’s become this morbid art,
From all the storms it’s weathered,
The blind love it wallowed,
And all the thorns it’s severed.
Lost love, not long ago,
I thought I found the one.
Was I a fool to fall for your status quo?
Very few know me through and through,
The few I’ve let in.
Construe of the scars,
Buried skin deep like tattoos.
Not meant to be removed,
But to shape my heart that’s allude,
To the heavens’, all the while, subdued.
Until then, it remains black and blue.
All because of me not getting over you.
Since you said goodbye,
I seem to have lost my pride.
I’m still waiting for,
You to come through the door.
My heart is too young to die,
But it hasn’t been able to revive,
I’ve force myself to mingle,
But I haven’t been able, 
To take a bite,
Instead I only nibble. 
Since you said goodbye.

Why I don’t want to get involved,
My heart still aches,
Screaming, “It’s only your fault,
when the relationships fall.”
I need to quit trying so hard,
Stop hiding behind this charred heart.
Focus on the nurture of things,
And not the nature it brings.

©H.M. Gautsch

Song of the Week Segment #1 – "Follow Your Arrow" by Kasey Musgraves

I decided to start this segment in my blog for two reasons; one, to interact with my supports more, and two, because of my love for music. The fun part of the new blog segments is I can post and promote the music and artists I choose whether it’s on the mainstream radio, Sound Cloud, YouTube, Spotify, etc… If you have any recommendations, feel free to post them in the comments section down below and it might be possible that I would like it enough to post it in one of my weekly segments.

To start out my Song of the Week segment, I am going to start with an upcoming country star who is currently touring with my favorite country trio, Lady Antebellum. Plus, she caught my attention during her performance at the Grammy’s and has shown the audience that she’s here to stay for awhile as she wins two Grammy’s the same night.

Enjoy this week’s song, “Follow Your Arrow” by Kacey Musgraves!

 Make sure to buy Kacey’s Grammy Award winning, “Best Country Album” on ITunes or at a store near you and catch her on the road with Lady’s Antebellum on the TAKE ME DOWNTOWN TOUR at a city near you!