One of the first books I ever mentioned when I revamped this site in early 2011 was Like Me: Confessions Of A Heartland Country Singer by country music recording artist, Chely Wright. I actually did a review of it (among other related things) in August of 2011. She’s had a tough road as an out lesbian in the world of country music and it’s often far right, politically conservative establishment and fans. Her road was made all the tougher by a family that had all sorts of issues of it’s own and a former partner who refused even the most basic of emotional support.
Now, the documentary movie about Chely and her life story has been released; Chely Wright: Wish Me Away. it’s currently available to stream from Amazon Instant Video. In October, it will be released on DVD. Orders are being accepted for the DVD now.
I have to tell you, I cried my way through Chely’s book. When I got it, I got the hardback. and new CD combo. There was a DVD in with the CD. I watched the performances for GI’s overseas on that DVD (all filmed prior to her coming out) and I was again moved to tears, especially knowing what she was really feeling during those times (a lot of her overseas touring time was chronicled in the book) and at how the troops had no idea. They were just happy to have her there, for them, supporting them. I had a hard time deciding whether I was going to stream this film and watch it… In all honesty, I bawled again.
There are light moments here, to be sure. There is music here. Actually, there’s a little bit of everything here. But, as with the book, as she goes through the story of her life on this film, I couldn’t help but be moved to tears. Her pain was almost palpable in the book. In the documentary, it’s very real.