For anyone looking to be inspired by artists who express their true voice in uniquely gratifying ways, we have an artist to introduce you to. Her name is Minton Sparks. She’s a spoken word performer who uses her voice to part oceans with wicked humor and to move mountains with laser insight, as she projects the backyard shadows and highlights of life in the rural American South.
Minton Sparks brings to the listener everything Southern from the sticky humid distress of pop-up thunder bumpers to the heartsick aftermath of love lost, gone wrong, starved, stuck, gossiped about to death, or otherwise misplaced.
In as little as two minutes flat she can drag your spirit through a heart-wrecking field of honey bee stings, shove your face full of cockle-burrs, batter dip and deep fry your raw nerves, and then have you begging for more soulful helpings.
Her recordings are simply riveting, with her voice telling her heart-in-hand-held stories underscored mostly by piano or guitar. But the experience defies adequate explanation or description. You simply need to hear her to believe the experience could be so incredibly rich and engaging -all because of what she does with her unique voice.
She never forces herself upon the audience. Her voice is as natural as breathing. The truth of her tales are carried with care and concern, something cradled or coddled, then other times kicked and kitchen-sunk.
Seeing her onstage backed up usually by a sole musician is a must-see experience for anyone who is looking to hone their craft and be inspired as a singer or anyone looking to use their voice to move an audience.
If you want to see a powerful performer effortlessly communicate the truth heart to heart you need to experience Minton Sparks.
She has graced stages from Oklahoma to New York, from New Mexico to Georgia, playing a variety of venues from coffee house cafes to main stage theatres, from storytelling festivals to a recent performance for inmates at the Tennessee Prison For Women.
Finding Her Voice
“I started performing as part of my brother’s one-man show, Sermons from the Road,” Sparks said. “He gave me a twenty minute spot and told me to come up with something, and that was the first formal performance at Bongo Java After Hours Theatre in Nashville about nine years ago.”
Her stories are truly haunting tributes to moments that move the heart, stir the spirit, bust the brain wide open, or gnaw from neck to navel at numbing nerves.
She speaks of love gone wrong, adolescent misadventure, childhood memories, face lifts, gas pumping mamas, death and dying, or missing life’s dreamboat.
But each of her stories, regardless of its light or darkness, rouses the senses and feeds inspiration.
“The pieces are inspired by many different things,” she said. “It depends on what I hear that strikes a chord. My family has been a wonderful well of inspiration here to date.”
As for what she does to keep her voice supple and smooth, her answer is quite simple – she sings. “I think singing strengthens my voice,” she said.
A Diverse Circle of Connections
Her CD’s have featured artists as diverse as singer Maura O’Connell, Nickel Creeks’ brilliant mandolin mastermind Chris Thile, veteran Bob Dylan guitarist John Jackson, piano virtuoso Steve Conn, gifted bluegrass artist Abigail Washburn, the late Waylon Jennings, and gifted singer-songwriter, Darrell Scott. She even recently performed with the legendary Leon Redbone.
Visit www.mintonsparks.com and get acquainted with this powerfully gifted vocal-communicator. Surround yourself with artists like Minton Sparks that are true to their unique voice and dedicate themselves to its direct, special delivery. It will help you find that unique true voice that is yours alone as you pave your personal path to singing success.