Allow me to introduce myself—I’m Heather Evans, a Folk/Pop Singer/Songwriter and big dreamer living in the Sacramento area. I am originally from Columbus, Ohio and transplanted here about 2 1/2 years ago. And when I did, I longed for music community. I was a part of an amazing music community in Ohio, so my heart broke when I left and had start over completely.
In efforts to meet other Singer/Songwriters in the area, I started hosting a “Songwriter in the Round” event at Fig Tree Coffee in Roseville. Each artist would share a song and in between, I had the opportunity to ask them questions about their music and songwriting process. I felt in my element. It was different than any “show” I’d ever done before.
Joshua Lickter, Owner of Fig Tree Coffee, took notice of this unique event and how the crowd was fully engaged. He asked if I’d want to host these events once a month. Of course, I eagerly said “YES!”
I felt like God was calling me to be a light in the Sacramento music scene. I started praying about what he wanted me to do, what this event needed to be.
One night, my husband and I went to minister at a young adult group. At the end, they asked if they could pray for us. When we said yes, they began to prophecy over us exactly what we needed to hear. One word specifically stuck out to me and stayed with me. The young lady prophesied “I see you on a circle stage with a bunch of musicians. You’re not in the front but in the back, playing more of a supporting role. But you’re definitely one of the main leaders. On one side of the audience there are Christians and on the other side are non-Christians. And for the first time ever they are all gathered in the same place.”
At the time I had no idea what this word meant, but as I was praying into what the event was supposed to be and what to name it, this word came back to my memory.
I asked God what to name the it and He immediately gave me the name “Sacramento Songwriter Circle.” I was in shock. I forgot completely about the word, but when He said that, I remembered it and knew what it meant—that I would be gathering both Christian and non-Christian Artists together to share their music and that I’d be able to speak into their lives and be a light.
We’ve been running the Sacramento Songwriter Circle showcase at Fig Tree Coffee for 9 months now. We have had almost 50 artists come through and share their music. My goal every time I host a Sacramento Songwriter Circle showcase is to encourage and show love to each artist. I’ve had opportunities to pray for people, give prophetic words and be a listening ear. As I’m asking questions, I’m praying and asking Jesus what He wants me to say. It’s always powerful.
The Showcase has morphed and grown over time; we now have a team headed up by James Carnahan who helps with sound and even records the event “live” for our podcast The Songwriter Circle. We have 2 professional photographers that help capture photos from the event: Tyler Watley of Verdance Visuals and Danielo Pareja of Sage & Wild Co. We have grown to the point were we do 2 Sacramento Songwriter Circles a month. I have an awesome Co-host, Jessie Spurgeon, who hosts the 1st Wednesday of the month. I host the 3rd Wednesday. We invite the crowd to interact with the Songwriters by writing encouraging words on “encouragement cards” that are scattered throughout the audience. My favorite part is at the end of the evening when I get to give them to the artists and see their reactions.
Another dream of mine was to do Meet Ups once a month in the Basement of Fig Tree Coffee. I threw the idea out to Joshua, the owner of Fig Tree, and he said yes because he saw the success and the impact of the showcase.
We’ve been meeting for about 6 months now and have about 15-20 Songwriters every time. At these meet ups, we hear from a seasoned songwriter, do a songwriting exercise, I share something inspirational, each songwriter shares a song they’re working on and we jam together.
Through these meet ups, I’ve seen songwriters team up for shows around town and become friends; I have seen crazy growth and confidence develop. Our goal is to eliminate competition in the music scene in Sacramento, support, encourage and create a platform for them to share their music.
My dream moving forward is to have a segment on the local news, to team up with a radio station for a segment and to host the Sacramento Songwriter Circle showcase at a theatre.
I’m encouraged to see God move in the Sacramento music scene. I feel like He’s given me a picture of each songwriter being a light in Sacramento, that when they go into Bars, Coffee Shops and venues to perform, they will light up the city.
If you’re reading this and you have a dream in your heart, go after it with God! He wants to partner with you in your dreams and has all the connections, resources and solutions to any problem you’ll face. You may feel small and insignificant like a mouse, but He sees you as a lion. Strong, brave, called and courageous. Stand in the authority He’s given you and dream with Him!
If you’re in the Sacramento area, you’re invited to the Sacramento Songwriter Circle Showcase on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday’s of the month at Fig Tree Coffee in Roseville! Come by and say hello!