Fingerstyle Guitar China 2015

Billy and TJ have been in China with Fingerstyle Guitar China for 2 days thus far.  They will be there touring with Fingerstyle until August 1st.  Here you will find updates from their travels!  For real-time photo updates, view Billy’s FB page here.
 
 

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While in Beijing for his first stop of the tour, Billy had an interview at Fingerstyle Guitar China headquarters, a workshop and a concert.  He then traveled to Wuxi for another interview, concert and workshop.  To finish up his time in China, Billy went to Shanghai for his final concert.

We would like to extend a big thank-you to Fingerstyle Guitar China, Cassandra, Weifang and everyone who made this tour such a success!  Billy and TJ always enjoy their time in Asia and this was no exception.  Enjoying the culture, music and meeting new friends!

 
 

Interview with Fingerstyle Guitar China


 

Beijing Workshop

 
 

Beijing Concert


 

Wuxi Concert


 

Wuxi Workshop


 
 

Shanghai Concert
Serenity Prayer Project - On Location TV19

Serenity Prayer Project - On Location TV19

On Location TV19


 
On Location TV19 – Published on March 4, 2015, On Location TV19’s Local Image interviewed the writers and producers of Serenity Prayer Project. They were honored to be featured in this segment with Judy Skeie-Voss.

Serenity Prayer Project is an ongoing effort to share a musical version of The Serenity Prayer by Reinhold Niebuhr – “God grant me the SERENITY to accept the things I cannot change, COURAGE to change what I can, and the WISDOM to know the difference.”

Serenity Prayer Project On Location TV19’s Local Image March 2015


Judy sits down with Billy McLaughlin, Nate Sabin and Lori Morris Werch to talk about the Serenity Prayer Project.
Learn more about Serenity Prayer Project here.

Minneapolis, MN –

Serenity Prayer Project - Interview With KTIS

Interview with KTIS


 
Yesterday, Lori Morris Werch (Executive Producer) had the wonderful opportunity to be interviewed by Pam Lundell on 98.5 KTIS for the KTIS Morning Show with Pam & Andy.  You can listen to the interview right here, or visit the KTIS website.
If you would like to hear The Serenity Prayer Song played on KTIS radio, please leave a comment on their website or email them directly making the request.  The more requests they receive the higher the likelihood of having the song aired.  Thank you for all your help and support in spreading this beautiful prayer!
 

Serenity Prayer Project – Interview With KTIS


 

You can stay in touch with Serenity Prayer Project via social media and through our website!

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Purchase The Serenity Prayer Song on iTunes, Google Play, Amazon Music & SerenityPrayerProject.com

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new keynote topics

Billy's New Keynote Topics

Billy’s New Keynote Topics


In the last few years, Billy has created and recreated several popular Keynotes. Ranging from his keynote “Adversity to Innovation”, to “Rethink Impossible”, Billy is excited to announce the creation of more new Keynote topics!
In addition to New Ways to Do It, Setback Before Success, and Making an Impact With All You’ve Got!, Billy now offers Keynote topics addressing Life After Diagnosis and Stop Listening to Experts.  Billy’s most popular Keynote presentations and their descriptions are available on Billy’s Keynote Topics page or by contacting Hannah Day.  Updates have also been made to Billy’s One Sheet.
new keynote topics

Click here to download your copy of Billy’s One Sheet

Billy’s most popular Keynote Topics:

 

New Ways to Do It:  The Road to Reinvention

Billy encourages you to step out of your spectator’s seat and recognize your ability to take an active role in designing the future that you have imagined.
 

Setback before Success:  Accepting the Challenge that comes with Change

Billy combines solid, actionable advice with exceptional music and an entertaining style for an unforgettable experience that will change your perspective on the challenges you and your organization face.
 

Doing More With Less – Making an impact with all that you’ve got!

By realizing what still works and what still matters, you can make a significant difference, regardless of the obstacles. Listen to Billy’s story; you, too, will choose to be a “difference-maker”!
 

Stop Listening to Experts!

Billy’s keynote talk with just the right amount music will help you become the confident expert you know that you are – and show others around you the new paths that must be taken for you and your organization to succeed. Who did Steve Jobs listen too?
 

Life After Diagnosis

Billy has created this program especially for business, foundations, healthcare professionals, Insurance professionals and individuals who have been affected by sudden, future-changing events. He takes them along with him on a personal journey from diagnosis to self-discovery, which led him to a new and more exciting phase of his business development and career building future.

More available upon request.

Florida – February 2014.
Photos by TJ Jensen.

Streaming for Dystonia

On Friday, January 24, Billy gave a very special concert. It was the first time he had performed simultaneously to a live audience and an audience around the world. The concert, “Streaming for Dystonia,” was sponsored by the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation (DMRF) as part of a crusade to increase awareness of dystonia and to help raise funds for medical research. “Somebody in your circle of friends has dystonia,” said Billy at the concert. “It comes in so many forms, from someone suffering from writers’ cramp to someone whose neck muscles spasm so that they can’t straighten up to someone whose voice has become progressively hoarse.” These are all symptoms of dystonia, which makes it’s difficult to recognize,” he explained.
Billy considers himself fortunate to have found a way around his dystonia. He explained to the audience the way he now plays his guitar, with his left hand, and how he had to learn to fail his way to success. “As with dystonia, you can’t be afraid,” said Billy. For three years, Billy had suffered from the symptoms without it being properly diagnosed. During that time he lost his home, marriage, recording contracts and his music. “I’m here to help people find a way out of the trap that is dystonia,” said Billy. “I’m lucky because I can still do something I love to do.”
Billy is passionate about advancing the entire field of neurosciences. “The power of a chronic condition like dystonia, Parkinson’s or epilepsy to beat us down is really tremendous,” he said. Billy finds it an amazing coincidence that DMRF began its research into dystonia in 1976, the same year that he started playing guitar. “The worst thing that ever happened to me has unfolded to be the best thing that ever happened. To have this opportunity to play my music with meaning and purpose is truly a blessing. Thank you to all who turned out and tuned in to build awareness of dystonia!”
For more information about DMRF or to make a contribution, visit www.dystonia-foundation.org.
Written by Linda Ruhland
 
 

interview with donatelle
Interview with Donatelle

Donatelle

Billy’s Message Inspires Innovation in Medical Device Manufacturer

Treasa Springett, president of Donatelle, an award-winning manufacturer of devices for the medical industry, asked Billy McLaughlin to present his story to the company’s leadership team as part of the team’s future vision project, “Changing the Game”.  “I first met Billy during his presentation at an Executive Group Forum, led by Bill Mills,” she said. “I was amazed at the similarities between Billy’s story and what we’ve been experiencing at Donatelle, which is: ‘How do we as leaders face challenges and not fall back on what had always worked before?’” As a sole proprietor and artist stricken with dystonia, Billy simply couldn’t go back to what he had done before. He had to reinvent himself. The timing of Billy’s story happened to fit perfectly with Donatelle’s planning retreat, which was scheduled for the upcoming December.

Treasa surprised her leadership team by asking Billy to make a special appearance at their retreat and to share his story about overcoming “impossible” challenges. “I found Billy’s story empowering; it aligned so well with our leadership culture,” said Treasa. “In the global medical device marketplace our customers are challenged with rapid change every day. Billy’s message encouraged us to embrace change; recognize the need for it, be willing to address the challenge and adapt. Treasa intended Billy’s presentation to be a gift to her leadership team. “I was so excited to be able to book him for our December retreat, it was hard for me to keep it a secret. Billy’s story combined with his humor and music was fantastic,” she said.

Billy was not the first presenter to appear at a Donatelle leadership retreat. This time, however, the team had the added enjoyment of listening to Billy’s music along with his speech. More than enjoyment, Treasa said that Billy’s message resonated with the challenges that Donatelle and all companies face daily: How do you rethink change in the global market, which creates pressures you cannot anticipate? “Billy’s example of overcoming challenge inspired us to become the change we try to create; this had great personal and business relevance to us. Our mission at Donatelle is to create possibilities to improve the quality of life for humankind, one person at a time,” she explained.

After his performance, Billy was invited to join the group for an evening of fun and conversation. It was exciting for him to learn that some of the devices Donatelle is designing will treat the symptoms he suffers from focal dystonia. Treasa and the Donatelle leadership team look forward to having Billy return again to a future retreat. Treasa mentioned, “I’d like for Billy to delve deeper into his story so that we can learn more about his journey. Also, I think it will be great fun to add another hour of musical entertainment following his presentation so that we can continue to enjoy listening to Billy play.”

interview with donatelle

Billy with Treasa Springett

Epilepsy Foundation of Western WI
Epilepsy Foundation of Western Wisconsin

Epilepsy Foundation of Western Wisconsin

 “The Epilepsy Foundation of Western Wisconsin leads the fight to stop seizures, find a cure and overcome the challenges created by epilepsy.”

“There are not enough words of gratitude to Billy McLaughlin who was our incredible speaker for the Epilepsy Foundation of Western Wisconsin’s Share the Flame and Silent Auction on December 3rd, 2013 at Fanny Hill Dinner Theater in Eau Claire. Our guests who are business professionals, medical staff, family, and personal supporters of our mission, were absolutely amazed at Billy‘s powerful performance and inspirational story. He kept all of us spellbound, with his presentation and music.
“Many of our guests knew of his music and talent in the 1990’s and were amazed at the challenges he has faced over the past years with focal dystonia which forced him to relearn how to play his guitar. His personal story as a single father with a son, who has many challenges with epilepsy, warmed our hearts and created understanding  in the reality of how difficult living with seizures can be. His amazing personality, and determination to make his marvelous comeback and his life more meaningful and positive made an awesome impact on everyone!

“Billy has a kindness, charm, and caring demeanor about him, and he is able to relate, and talk to anyone! He changed our way of thinking and feeling and gave us the hope and new goals to focus on in our work and in our lives. Billy spoke to us as friends and left us with wanting to hear more of his music and his compassionate message over and over again. We are thankful for the uplifting “gift” Billy gave us that touched our lives and filled our hearts with his magic!”

-Lou Kelsey,Director of Client Services and Community Resources. Epilepsy Foundation of Western Wisconsin


 

Emmy Award

Emmy Award Reception

KPBS Studio, San Diego CA


Minneapolis, Minn —
Billy McLaughlin celebrated the honor of receiving an Emmy the best way he knows: by giving back. On November 8, Billy held a special Emmy Award Reception Concert celebrating those people who in some way played a part in what led to his achievement. The concert included some familiar “Billy” tunes along with a sneak preview of his upcoming “Simple Gifts” tour. Grateful for the recognition, Billy paused momentarily to acknowledge those who supported him. His schedule, however, shows no sign of slowing down; nor does the anticipation of award-winning music he continues to produce, given what he previewed that evening.
Click here to read previous Emmy posts.
 
 
All photos taken by TJ Jensen

Minnesota SHRM 2013 Conference
Minnesota SHRM 2013 Conference

Minnesota SHRM

Minnesota Society for Human Resource Management (MNSHRM) State Conference

On October 13, Billy McLaughlin kicked off the annual conference for the Minnesota Chapter of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). The conference brought together human resource professionals and consultants for new ideas, shared thoughts and best practices in employee engagement, education and new ways at looking at HR problems. Following his kickoff speech, Billy, accompanied by his string quartet, added an unprecedented element to the evening’s festivities as well.  For an event that is typically filled with continuing education and legal content, Billy and his ensemble were a deviation from the norm. Attendees responded positively to Billy’s addition.
Mary Gummerson, office manager for McGladrey LLP and chair of this year’s SHRM event, said that Billy exceeded expectations. “He wonderfully related the HR profession into his experiences and challenges while entertaining us. He also reminded us through his challenges that the thinking we need to do to solve a problem is not always in front of us.” Mary commented that the SHRM conference does not usually have a musical component. “It was a good fit. Members raved about it; I heard people mention that Billy was fantastic.” She added that Billy’s combination of entertainment and speaking contributed to the overall success of the conference. “He has overcome difficult challenges to become an incredible inspirational speaker who reaches people on an emotional level,” she added.
Jennifer Taschner, human resources director for Fiduciary Counselling, Inc., was among the attendees at the SHRM event. She said, “The foundational core of our work is to know, understand and have empathy for the employees we serve. Yet, there is so much separation due to legal paperwork and compliance updates. Billy’s story brought me back. He made an emotional connection through which I was able to share in his trials, experience his success and see the happiness he now has for the work he is doing.”
In response to hearing Billy’s music at a SHRM conference, Jennifer said, “Music is important in everyone’s life; it touches us in many ways. When I was growing up, we had an improvisational music instructor in grade school. She taught us the value of free-form learning. That understanding has translated into my professional life. Through Billy’s music I am reminded to think creatively, especially in a world that is constantly changing. In my HR role, it’s important to see individuals for what their talents are.  Billy’s combination of music and an emotional message made sense, especially speaking to this group. He is an inspirational singer, songwriter and presenter with a unique style that you wouldn’t expect.”
 
All photos taken by TJ Jensen