We had the good fortune of connecting with Jodi Light and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Jodi, what habits do you feel helped you succeed?

Ahhh…SHOW BIZ! The lights, stages, music, singing, dancing, acting, audiences and applause! A wonderful, crazy, creative industry that I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing since the age of two. We have to remember that show “biz” is short for “Business” which can be a tricky, unpredictable, roller coaster ride…especially during a pandemic. That said, it’s a ride that I wouldn’t have missed for the world! We also feel blessed to have been highly successful in the industry, and I’m thrilled to pass along some healthy habits that we feel helped with that outcome. Here are the three companies that I own and run from the oldest to the newest:

THE SHINING STAR BAND This year marks the 25 year anniversary of The Shining Star Band of which I am the band leader, lead vocalist and coordinator along with my husband Mario Mendivil, as bassist extraordinaire and musical director. Shining Star is AZ’s premier dance / party and variety band for corporate events, weddings, fundraisers, country club member events and galas. The band is still award winning, five star rated, has never had a negative review, is accredited with the AZ BBB, and is ranked in the top 5% in America.

SHINING STAR ENTERTAINMENT Shining Star Entertainment is our full entertainment production company representing over 80 of the finest musicians. We book local, regional and major name acts. This company is female owned and operated by myself and Marketing Director Bree Brown. Founded in January 2019, this company books all of the entertainment for Silverleaf, Desert Highlands, and DC Ranch Country Clubs in Scottsdale, as well as The Plexus Corporation (one of the 30 largest companies in the world).

SHINE FOR THE FUTURE Also owned and operated by myself and Bree Brown, SFTF is our up and coming, fully comprehensive Social Emotional Learning program for elementary age children based on a course that I created in 2010 to help children overcome stage fright. The course was an after- school enrichment program through Paradise Valley Unified School District for the past 10 years, and has had the highest student return in the entire district. Our new, innovative course will consist of 75 semi-animated character based segments that are five minutes apiece, accompanied by a physical “funbook” that teaches children confidence from the inside out, outside in and as a team. The cute characters are a safe “family” for children, and enlighten students with listening, empathy, coping & self-programming skills, while helping to balance human interaction and technology. The program will be available by the end of 2021 via the SHINE FOR THE FUTURE portal on the website for in home and in school use.

Here are habits that I practice and have found effective to be a path to better success:

Habit #1: RESPECT & APPRECIATION. I love the idea that “love” is a verb. I feel the same way about the word “respect”. I know this sounds very basic, but we treat all of our musicians and clients with kind and sincere respect. I make it a point to always express how much we value them! For my clients, I go the extra mile to custom tailor their events, and pay attention to every detail in order to assure success. My approach is that we are all a “team” (entertainers, vendors and clients) with a common goal leaving wonderful memories for everyone involved. We have a “thankful” attitude at all times before, during and after every engagement. Showing other humans respect and appreciation is a winning choice every time and will help create those important repeat customers and positive reviews!

 Habit #2: DAILY SELF PROGRAMMING. This is a habit I practice daily and teach all of my students. Before the craziness of each day begins, go for a walk or take even a few minutes for yourself to remind you who you are and what you need to do that day. Say these things out loud so your own ears hear it and clearly communicate to your brain that it is your intention to be the best version of yourself. Self-programming sets up the entire day and is highly effective in building and maintaining your business (and sanity).

Habit #3: VISUALIZATON. It is vital to have the clearest vision of what you want in detail, in order to have the best chance to achieve it. We are always looking ahead, and incubating together on marketing, how we can make improvements, and how we can better serve our clients.

Habit #4: WRITE LISTS. The brain functions best when it is organized. Get things out of your head, and write them down or put them into a list. This way, you won’t waste energy on feeling so overwhelmed AND most likely you will sleep better.

Habit #5: ADAPT. If there was ever a moment in history to adapt, especially with any business that involves entertainment or hospitality, it is NOW. One time, we were performing at a huge corporate event, and the speaker gave some advice that changed my life. He said…”it’s not the fastest, smartest, or biggest companies that withstand the hands of time…it’s the companies that adapt the best that survive”. We keep things fresh, and keep an open mind to adapt to an ever changing market. Pay close attention to what your clients NEED, and consider how best to approach them with what you can offer them to make their lives, or jobs easier.

Habit #6: LISTEN. There is no voice too small. I try and learn something from everyone I work with. I want to hear everyone’s story, and humans like to be listened to. It is a gift to be heard and understood. Not only will you feel more connected to others, but you can learn so much from hearing their methods, suggestions, constructive criticism and mistakes they’ve made, and learn from your own mistakes as well.

Habit #7: BE SELF AWARE & TAKE A POSITIVE APPROACH. This is a very important one. How do your clients see you? Are you aware of how your energy and attitude is affecting those around you? As a leader, and business owner, I feel it is imperative to realize that sometimes we need to “change our brain”. If we wake up cranky or in a negative space, we have the power to reverse those thoughts. Even if it’s just three deep intentional breaths to breathe IN peace and calmness, and breathe OUT our stress and negativity, it’s not only healthy for ourselves to take that 5 minute action, but it will help everyone around you. There’s plenty of negativity out there, but if you mindfully make an effort to choose to be positive instead, you not only will attract other positive people to you, but you will set up a happier and healthier path to success.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
As far as our musical businesses, what sets us apart are the five “points” on our “star” of Shining Star: trust, quality, value, experience and we are team players. Our musicians trust us, because they respect us as musicians, and we treat them with respect and meet their needs. Our clients trust us because we have a stellar reputation, go the extra mile to ensure a wonderful event for them and we really care. We have the consistancy of quality on every event (which is reflected in all five-star reviews), have fair pricing, and years of experience. We work very well with everyone…musicians, clients, coordinators, and venues. We are proud of these companies and are excited to bring live music back!

With SHINE FOR THE FUTURE, we have done a comparison analysis, and have found that our program is the most fully comprehensive, confidence-building program that exists for elementary-aged children. Our characters, music and writing are all original in the program. My son Tobi did the original designs on our characters when he was only 13 years old. A loving family made by a kid for kids!

BEST ADVICE…when you have a great idea that you truly believe in, don’t give up, give it everything you have, protect it, and do as much as you can to develop it yourself.

We have worked very hard to get to where we are today and have enjoyed the journey, even when met with challenges. It is definitely not easy, but that’s what makes it great with every incremental step of progress! I learn from everything and everyone, especially my mistakes. I overcome challenges by remembering why it’s important to serve these great causes…putting people to work, creating lasting memories, helping to shape children in positive ways, and helping all children find their self-worth.

We are the proudest of SHINE FOR THE FUTURE and SHINECARES4KIDS and hope to change the world with this program! I learn lessons every day. I welcome and value them. I’ve learned how to properly structure our businesses, and how to set up a non-profit. I learned how networking with the right people is incredibly important and integral to building success. People are what make everything worthwhile, so I keep it my priority to treat everyone with respect and take the best care of them. I learned to do the right things for the right reasons and set an example with my actions.

We want the world to know that children are everything. We must teach them that they each have tremendous value and an important place on the planet. We have to balance human interaction and technology and stay connected to each other to order to make a better tomorrow for the human species.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Fun question! Sedona is definitely my first recommendation! The MIM is a must-experience, and of course, we would recommend all venues that support live music. We love patio restaurants and stay-cations at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge, and the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess in the summer. Our fave restaurants include INGOs tasty food, Windsor (downtown), Grassroots, Village Tavern, Green House, and White Chocolate Grill. We love “First Friday” downtown on Roosevelt Row where local artists shine on the first Friday of every month. We love the Phoenix Zoo, and seasonal favorites like the AZ State Fair, and Schnepf’s Farm.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I love this! Thank you for creating this wonderful and meaningful platform! So firstly, SHOUT OUT to SHOUT OUT! 

My personal shout outs would go to:

Mario Mendivil (my husband of 25 years) who is a world-class bassist, composer, and musical director for the band. He also is the audio engineer and foley creator for SHINE FOR THE FUTURE.

SHOUT OUT to our kids…our daughter Alex ( future filmmaker, screenplay writer, editor, and amazing make up artist) & our son Tobi (character designer, composer, concept and back-ground artist for SHINE FOR THE FUTURE)

To Bree Brown…my best friend, brilliant marketing director, singing and business partner for Shining Star Entertainment and SHINE FOR THE FUTURE.

Huge and humble SHOUT OUT to my mentor and dear friend Maria Brunner, founder of the amazing Phoenix-based, non-profit MUSICALLY FED who has given me the best advice and is helping to guide me with SHINE FOR THE FUTURE and SHINE CARES 4 KIDS.

To Matt Gould (President of SHINE CARES 4 KIDS), Melanie Bermudez (board member, secretary-treasurer and teacher) and Mary Anne Holtzen (board member, lifetime teacher and for inspiring me to create SHINE)

To our awesome drummer James Prez and amazing vocalist Giovanni Amato in the Shining Star Band as well as love and respect to all of the talented musicians that we are honored to work with and book.

HUGE AND LOVING SHOUT OUT to all of the wonderful, hard-working teachers who sacrifice so much, and change children’s lives for the better!

One last SHOUT OUT to Dr. Lisa Strohman (psychologist, attorney, author, and international expert on technology wellness) who inspires me so much and is a hero to all children.

Website: www.shiningstarband.com , www.shiningstarentertainmentaz.com , www.shineforthefuture.com
Instagram: @shining_star_band , @sse_az , @_shineforthefuture_
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Shining-Star-Band-324346970681/ https://www.facebook.com/shiningstarentertainmentaz/
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC60Ni3uuoLKm64w1VBXaV-A

Image Credits:
Eric Cosh – Paradigm Video and Photography Amy Wamboldt – Character Artist

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutArizona is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.