Singer-songwriters on stage at Meetings Today LIVE! South in Nashville. From left: Tommy Karlas, Marti Dodson, Tiffany Goss and Tim Fagan. Credit: Wandering Maverick Photo + Film.
4 Songs About Planning Meetings and Events That Will Leave You in Stitches
Does planning meetings and events ever feel like it’s straight out of a country music song? You know the genre—everything seems to go comically wrong, but the protagonist just keeps keepin’ on?
We brought that concept to life at Meetings Today LIVE! South, held July 9-12 in Nashville, Tennessee, via the pairing of local songwriters and meeting planner attendees to write songs about the crazy life of planners. A part of the corporate social responsibility component of the event, Meetings Today tapped the talents of CreatiVets, a nonprofit that helps veterans cope with post-service challenges, such as PTSD, through songwriting and performance.
“We usually say, ‘What's the one thing you can't talk about?’ And then they will tell the songwriters, and we can put that into a song,” said Brett Gillan, program director for CreatiVets, about how the nonprofit uses music therapy to help vets. “And it's things like, ‘Well, I can't tell my kids this, or I can't tell my wife or my husband this.’ And then the most magical thing happens; they write the song and they put all this stuff in it, and the first person they text it to is their wife or their kids or their family. It opens up communication, and that's where the real healing starts, because the songwriters are able to say what the veteran needs to say in a way that the veteran didn't know how to say it.”
[Related Podcast: Helping Veterans Through Songwriting, With CreatiVets]
Fitting for an event held in “Music City U.S.A.,” the planners at Meetings Today LIVE! South split up into four groups with Nashville-themed names:
- Printers Alley
- 2nd Ave.
- Music Row
The groups gathered in various rooms on the meeting floor of host property the Omni Nashville Hotel and each were assigned a local songwriter—we’re talking Grammy-caliber talent here—to brainstorm a song about the trials and triumphs of life as a meeting and event planner. From herding cats and dealing with natural disasters to frisky attendees, food allergies, budget dust-ups and the ever-looming specter of attrition, the songs these groups produced aligned with the great country music tradition of telling it like it is.
From funny and inspiring to even a tad naughty, we hope you enjoy the following four songs that were co-written onsite by Meetings Today LIVE! South attendees and performed in the hallowed rotunda of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.
Tiffany Goss: "That's What We Do"
Tim Fagen: "Bring on the Meets"
Marti Dodson: "Bringing People Together"
Tommy Karlas: "What We Do"
See the Wrap-Up Video from Meetings Today LIVE! South: