Shannon Wurst juggles motherhood, music and moments

Shannon Wurst juggles motherhood, music and moments

Local singer/songwriter Shannon Wurst says she takes her moments when she gets them.

“I know that when I sit down to write songs, I really just need a quiet environment and a pen and to really just start free writing,” she says. “So the ideal environment is, I at least have 15 minutes where I know I’m going to just sit down and devote to seeing what is coming up in my heart and in my mind, and start going from there.”

Although she says that she’d like longer, it’s unsustainable to wait for those single moments of inspiration. As little as 10-15 minutes is a good amount of time to get her music flowing.

“I think, as a working mom, I’ve started to understand how to write and work in smaller increments,” Wurst says, whether that’s a moment in the carpool line or during lunch breaks between memorizing a script.

“The ideal environment really is just trying to make non-ideal environments work,” she concludes.

“Not that I’ve ever heard anybody actually mention it, but I feel like there is a pressure to somewhat hide it and try to work as if I don’t also have a family,” Wurst goes on to muse. “And I just think that there’s so many moms like myself that are quite honestly struggling to be able to to get the work done and the children taken care of and to also fill our cup at the end of the day with what we’ve contributed to the world.”

She says that even if she didn’t write many songs in the last year, she’s proud of what she’s accomplished.

“I got a few written, and it’s because I took the those small little moments to make them happen.”

For the last decade and a half, Wurst has been sharing her rustic Americana songs on stage and on six albums and one EP. Wurst and her band are planning to release a new single this May called “Sipping on Sunshine,” which was recorded at Crisp Studios in Fayetteville.

“We had a fun time recording that,” she says. “It’s going to be really fun to to get some new music out there.”

In addition to taking the time to bring her own songs into the world, Wurst also works with other aspiring songwriters to help them to hone their craft at the Folk School of Fayetteville and through private lessons. She says she’s planning a series of kids’ songwriting workshops this summer at Mount Sequoyah.

Lately she’s been part of the team that will bring “Journey to Oz” to the Walton Arts Center this month for the Classroom Series with Trike Theatre. There’s public performances set for 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. March 9 at Thaden School in Bentonville.

“I’m really excited to be able to present that,” she says. The interactive show directed by Christopher Parks follows Dorothy and her friends on their quest to defeat the Wicked Witch of the West.

“It’s a really great cast and a really wonderful director, so that’s been a really fun thing to be a part of,” she adds.

Also on March 9, Wurst and her band of Brad Helms on guitar, Owen McClung on upright bass and David Bright on drums will open the Music on the Mountain Series on Mount Sequoyah.

She says there “might” be a special guest appearance by her stepfather, local flat picker Ed Carr. Wurst is the daughter of Ronnie Wurst, who plays country and classic rock in bars across rural Arkansas.

The Shannon Wurst Band also have shows planned for Crystal Bridges Museum later this month and are set to play the Turnbow Park concert series on May 31. In the meantime, keep up with her on social media and at her website Her site also has tips for for “Making Music the Heart of Your Home,” just in time for spring cleaning.


Music on the Mountain

This year’s series of concerts is free! With Shannon Wurst performing March 9; Jude Brothers on March 30; Smokey and the Mirror, April 14; Dylan Earl, May 11; and Shiloh Old Time Pickers May 18.

Concerts take place at Vesper Point at Mount Sequoyah, 150 N. Skyline Drive in Fayetteville.

Reserve tickets at

Categories: Music