Driving back from our beach place last Sunday I was enthralled by Weekend Edition host, Liane Hanson’s interview on NPR with Gary Golio and Javaka Steptoe, the author and illustrator of Jimi Sounds like a Rainbow: A Story of the Young Jimi Hendrix. I was enveloped in a myriad of colors and sounds listening to this interview. The delicious descriptions of this charming book provided a glimpse into the hues of young Jimi’s rich imagination. How he “played in colors”…how he tried to make his guitar sound like the rushing water of Lake Washington. One of the goals of Be Brave. Lose the Beige is to help people introduce more color and creativity into their lives. An underlying theme of this book is exploring the creative process. While Jimi Sounds like a Rainbow is ostensibly a children’s book, the message works for all of us. I found myself inspired as child therapist Golio noted how Hendrix’s childhood reflected values we aspire to teach our children. “Persistence and loving what you do, setting positive goals and investing in yourself.”
As a writer and artist it’s easy to get discouraged as manuscripts are rejected by publishers and sculptures go un-purchased in galleries. I needed to be reminded of the importance of dreams, goals and the value of creativity and perseverance. I’m buying a copy of this book and I hope you do as well.