Do it on your own. Get uncomfortable. Learn, create something, be a voice for those without one, tell a tale in the hopes that it might inspire the listener.
Alynda Lee Segarra will not tell you these things outright, but give a listen to Hurray for the Riff Raff, her genre-warping Americana folk band, and take note of her background and you will find that these are the lessons that she learned for herself. She crafts songs that can be both emotive and exposing, sometimes taking the role of those served undue justice and singing their story.
Raised in the Bronx, Segarra struck out on her own at 17, riding the railroads in the vein of Mike Brodie or Jack Kerouac, sans the literary embellishments, and faced with the jarring reality of life on the streets. It was necessary to Segarra's ethos to challenge herself, a common thread that runs through her music today, defying convention and bending rules to suit her need. Before the musical success, however, she wished to experience the tribulation that would shape her adulthood. Adapting to New Orleans after a stint on the rail lines, and ultimately surviving the city, would prove to be her first hurdle to overcome.More »