Heather Aubrey Lloyd

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Did you know YOU were part of a successful New Year’s resolution? After two decades in music, I resolved to start this mailing list in January 2023. My band, ilyAIMY, already has its own newsletter, and it felt silly (too self-centered) to start another. But once I resolved to make this its own kind of art … to prioritize connection and intimacy … I knew what to do. And here we are 12 months later, at Issue 12. Thank you for holding me to my word. For holding my words. Here, I found a different voice, one that will mention some extremely important shows as an aside, after …

Today’s 2-Minute Tale

Self-centered is thinking that animals are off somewhere having meetings about you. It’s entirely possible the ravens I’m attempting to befriend are currently gathering their unkindness to decide if my treats are worthy of shiny tributes - that’s real. But I’m also fairly certain that dogs recently held a conference where at least one of the lesser measures (after peanut butter brand preferences) concerned me.  

I didn’t grow up with animals. My grandmother was attacked by a dog as a child and never got over it (a psychic once told her it was karmic, following her into every life). My father had no such mystic inhibitions – he just hates cats. The closest thing I had to a pet was a short-lived goldfish I won in one of those ping-pong cup games at the local fair. In their waterbags came home Dweezil, Moon Unit and my little brother’s goldfish, Bobby. Dweezil and Moon Unit transitioned swiftly from fishbowl to toilet bowl. Bobby, however, got all big and lived for like four years. 

My bandmates will tell you that I know basically nothing about pets other than don’t feed them chocolate and cat bellies are a trap. In my naivety on the road, I’ve lost entire sandwiches to petite beagles I believed could not possibly reach kitchen counters. 

But this year something changed (on the dogs’ side, at least). All dogs have decided I’m … known? Neighborhood dogs, tails wagging, regularly waiting for me in my driveway like I was coming home to them. Yesterday, loading in for studio work, all licks and nuzzles and yet another incredulous owner: “Uh … he never comes to anyone.” Sidewalks full of immovable hounds, greeting me like a long-lost friend: “Do they know you? They don’t like strangers.” On tour in Massachusetts earlier this month, I didn’t need a blanket for the insistent pit-mixes crowding the borrowed bed that could barely hold me, let alone the three of us. I’m telling you: dogs had a meeting about me. I only wish I knew what it meant. Am I dying? Or have I, an outsider ignorant to their customs, been chosen to lead all canines through a prophesied cataclysm?

Who knows how many myths and legends I might be part of? I like to think that all the spiders I’ve ever trapped in glasses and returned to the wild told the others that my evictions were strict, but I was kind and fair. The deportees would still need to devise nursery rhymes for their spiderlings, of course, to caution them away from my bathrooms (the only trespass in my home where the sentence is death). 

Ring around the toilet

Eight feet on the porcelain

Trash bin, trash bin

We all get squished.


So, the mongrel messiah is also part-time spider boogieman. Who am I to judge the fables of my local fauna? How many such little stories have I told myself to stay alive?


A forgotten song about keeping yourself going through stories.

That’s really what I’ve done here for the last year: let you see the little worlds I cannot help but build for myself. Fitting also, that first tale back in January started on a walk with my neighbor’s dog, Ollie, and this last one was written under the supervision of my parents’ dog, Bella (yes, they finally got one when I was almost 40). Dogs may suddenly be my biggest fans, but they can’t buy concert tickets, yet. So, that’s where you come in. Thank you to those who supported my 106 live shows and 18 livestreams in 2023. Check out 2024: 






Write me. Add me to your mailing list. Come to a show. Happy New Year.




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