I tuned into Oprah's OWN Network with great anticipation to see her show "Oprah's Next Chapter," where she interviews famous and interesting people in their homes. She premiered with Steven Tyler of the rock band Aerosmith and most recently as a judge on "American Idol" at his home in New Hampshire.
What I liked about the format is that Oprah goes back to her roots as an interviewer as well as Steven Tyler's roots as a singer in a rock band. Steven talks about the first time he met lead guitarist Joe Perry and how he felt like that was his true calling as a singer/songwriter.
New Hampshire is actually where Tyler grew up and his home on the little Lake Sunapee still beings him peace, especially when he walks in the nearby woods and sees the friendly people of the small town.
Even though Oprah made her name in Chicago, she seemed to share the wonder of a small town and the quiet of a walk in the woods with Tyler. It was neat to see Tyler struck by the simplicity of the woods and lake and even Oprah rubbing the moss on a rock and smelling the earthy goodness of the deep woods.
Where I glean my own peace also is on a lake here in the Adirondacks with woods all around. It's a long way from my pursuit of an acting career in New York City and Los Angeles, but I'll take the peace any day by comparison.
The interview went into some difficult subject matter that included Tyler's admission he abandoned his wife and daughter to tour with the rock band and he wasn't the father he should have been.
"My heart is still broken that I did that," Tyler said of leaving his first wife and daughter, Mia, who also was part of the interview. Although they had been estranged, Mia has written a book about her ordeal and Tyler said reading it gave him a new appreciation for what she went through.
The book gave Tyler a new perspective and Mia said she has now forgiven him and they are closer than ever.
Future shows on Oprah's Next Chapter are to include a Hasidic Jewish family who has never watched television, having a sleepover with the Food Network's Paula Deen, and touring Skywalker Ranch with George Lucas. If they are anything like the opening show with Steven Tyler, they should be well worth watching.
Kathryn Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career in New York City and Los Angeles, now pursues free lance writing from Caroga Lake in Fulton County. Previous columns and contact information may be accessed at her website at www.kathrynskorner.com