Lindsey is a talented artist and host of the show Charts, which can be seen daily on DittyTV at 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. CDT. Vote for your favorite video via Twitter using the hashtag #dittyfanfav to get Lindsey to play your top-choice video on the air or offer up your requests at email@example.com.
Tell us a bit about the show Charts and why viewers should tune in.
Besides my slew of puns and dad jokes, Charts is the show that wraps up and showcases all that is charting in Americana and Roots music. It’s a great way to stay up to date with what’s trending in Americana music and get in the know on newer music making its way up in the charts. I like to think there’s a little bit of everything for everyone on Charts, so it’s also a great way to introduce yourself to new music or convince your friends that there’s a lot more to Americana music outside of a typical country music stereotype.
Do you have any special moments that stick out about the show or simply in your time as a DittyTV VJ?
Honestly, as someone who is really bad at finding new music (I tend to stick to the same, tried-and-true albums, on repeat, forever!) I really appreciate Charts and all of Ditty for forcing me to listen to and explore new music. It can be really overwhelming to try and discover new music and know where to begin when you start listening to a newer genre, so I really love how Charts can be a bridge between established, well-known musicians (e.g. someone we’ve all heard of like Rosanne Cash) while also highlighting some newer artists for me to fall in love with (most recently The Secret Sisters) Also Ditty is just a really cool, Memphis-based project that I’m really proud to be a part of!
You had 13 years of training as a pianist. Do you still play? And if so, what kind of stuff brings you joy to play?
Oh man, you are tugging at my heart right now. I’m in the market for an electric keyboard, but my issue is I have very particular taste because of my training on a traditional piano. My piano lives at my parent’s house in Mississippi (I live in a 500-square-foot house; there is no room for my baby grand) and whenever I’m home I definitely warm up and play again. Honestly, I love playing classical music, or music composed for the piano, particularly Rachmaninoff, Chopin, or Sibelius. Music, especially piano music unembellished by vocals, can be so complex and emotional, and I can easily lose myself playing a piece for hours. I love artists who incorporate piano into their music, it’s such a wide-ranging instrument that can do so much. But at the end of the day, I will always choose to play unaccompanied piano music. It feels and sounds to me a lot like abstract paintings do, there’s a lot of surface enjoyment that anyone can feel and see, but truly great piano music is deep and layered and an amazing translation of the human experience into sound. All of y’all should go listen to some of my favorites listed below.
Jean Sibelius Romance Opus 24 no. 9
Ernesto Lecuona Malaguena (from “Andalucia”) for four hands
Sergei Rachmaninoff Prelude in C sharp Minor, Opus 3/2 (fun fact, Rachmaninoff was only 18 years old when he wrote this, what the hell) (extra fun fact, it’s inspired by the church bells in Moscow!)
One more because I can’t help myself: Johannes Brahms Rhapsody in G Minor (the range of sound in this piece always pulls at every inch of me.)
You’re originally from Jackson, Miss., so how did you end up in Memphis?
I did that thing that I think a lot of Southern kids do and got the heck out of my home state as soon as I graduated. I came to Memphis by way of Greensboro, NC. I went to school in the Delta and moved to Greensboro because I needed to see what life was like outside of Mississippi. After a year I applied for graduate school and got into Memphis College of Art and moved to Memphis. I’d never lived here before, and I figured it would be close enough to home to be convenient and familiar, but a new exciting city to explore. One of the best decisions I’ve made in my 28 years, and I’m very happy to be here!
As an artist, what mediums do you work in and what artists have inspired you the most?
Well to spare you all some time I’ll try and be brief. I primarily work in pen + pencil, as well as acrylic and gouache paint. I struggle a lot with why to create and what I should be thinking about while painting or drawing, so I look to a lot of artists who are or were very exploratory in their creative process. Artists like Kandinsky or Cezanne encourage me to constantly try and pull apart my process and create more, and artists like Andrew Wyeth drive me to make work that grabs at people and their visual senses. I also love work that stays with you, and I think it is the artist’s primary goal to be a conduit for people and society and whatever we see each other struggling with. Artists that consistently inspire me are Andrew Wyeth (particularly his painting Christina,) Kandinsky (see Improvisation 28 or Composition IV,) and Alphonse Mucha. Quite a lot of the time, music combined with art and a good walk will get my brain going.
What are some current art projects you have ongoing and where can we see your work?
Currently I’m trying to just stay present and create regular work. I’ve started a new daytime job, so I’m resettling my daily habits and trying to balance work + life + people + art. Right now I’m just working in a sketchbook and mostly focusing on portraiture and figure work, but I’ve got the serious itch to start painting again. Thankfully I’ve recently moved into a new studio space, so that should be able to start happening more frequently soon. The best way to follow my art (and please do, hold me accountable!) is at my Instagram, which is @lcmashburnart.
What do you do when you just want to catch your breath or have fun?
I love to go on walks and love getting to know my neighborhood, or just to go grab a beer and people watch. Memphis is a great city for doing both, so a lot of the time I love to plug in a good podcast or album and go walk my dog through Midtown or down by the river. My favorite bar is most definitely Earnestine & Hazel’s, but Hammer & Ale or Wiseacre Brewery is a great place to meet friends and hang out. There is, of course, a lot of music and art in the city, so I try and get out and see that as well.
What excites you most about the future of DittyTV?
Man I think that DittyTV is really doing something special and I’m excited to watch it grow. I’m also really excited to watch our actual, physical storefront grow on South Main as well. I just really want more people to tune in and tell us what we need to keep doing because I feel like Americana & Roots is a really wide genre with a lot of space for artists of all kinds to bring their experiences to the table. The world needs more inclusion and more voices speaking about the things we all experience in different ways, and I think music is one of the ways we can really communicate with each other. Also more people need to watch music videos as it is literally the penultimate combination of my two favorite things, so let’s get everyone tuned in!
And finally, if you had a guest in town who wanted to “see Memphis,” where would be five places you’d take them?
Oh boy. OK, so I love food and I love spending time with people, so my five places are most likely going to be centered around that.
1. Definitely the Civil Rights Museum. It’s an incredibly important space to visit, and while we have a ton of important museums, parks, and historical spaces in Memphis, if I had to pick only one to take a visitor to, it would definitely be the Lorraine. It’s a poignant, informative, and very integral museum to understanding so many things about Memphis, the South, and ultimately our country.
2. Elwood’s Shack: THE WINGS ARE PHENOMENAL. I know I should pick a barbecue joint but that always leads to some kind of friendly fight between Memphians, so I’m gonna highlight this little gem. Plenty of parking since it’s practically in Lowe’s parking lot, and some of the best dang food you’ll eat in Memphis.
3. Crosstown Concourse: So this is me kind of cheating cause there’s a gazillion things to see and eat in this building, but I really love how Memphis has revitalized a building in its core that was a massive, physical undertaking. Primarily, I’d take my friend up to the second floor to show them the Crosstown Arts Gallery, Art Bar, and the Concourse Cafe. The gallery has a rotating show from different artists in residency at Crosstown, and there’s always something really exciting to find up there.
4. Earnestine & Hazel’s: When I lived downtown and was in grad school I was practically living in this bar. It was the mid-point between my apartment and school, and I always felt welcome, whether it was at 6 p.m. for a quick beer or at 2 a.m. for a late-night art break Soul Burger. Everyone should eat the Soul Burger, sit in a booth, and just enjoy the history in that building. Earnestine’s has stories to tell you if you just let it. (Pro tip, avoid prime hours, especially in the spring and summer, because it is a popular tourist destination. However, that can be prime people watching, so just think ahead.)
5. The River: I know, I know, this might seem anti-climatic. However, I’m someone who is highly aware of and influenced by my physical surroundings. Being from Mississippi and having lived in the Mississippi Delta for some formative years, the River has always held a certain status in my heart. I have spent a lot of time walking up and down the River Walk, just really enjoying being next to those old, muddy, deep waters. Just thinking about how much the river has seen, and how much it has touched, and who all have relied on it for so many years, and all of the other multitudes of ways it has shaped and influenced us overwhelms me. I mean, it is the largest river in the U.S. and the fourth largest in the world, and I just really appreciate living next to something so large and old. Last stop would definitely be to bring my visiting friend down close to Beale Street landing to sit by the river, take our shoes off (weather permitting,) and stick my feet down in those muddy waters like the Mississippi girl I am.