Saturday, 23 January 2016

It's Like Riding a Bike

Yeah. A time consuming, mind-numbing bike with a flat tire. The wheels are square actually. And your on a tight rope 150 feet in the air. It's a circus performance. You never forget that shit...

I always dred writing about my music. It's so hard to find the right words in a professional tone rather than just letting the music speak for itself. It's like when someone asks you what genre you are and you want to be specific so you can get the reaction from them as if you pulled your backpack piano out and played your best song right there in the middle of the company Christmas party at the Hyatt. 

Or it's like writing a cover letter. I hate cover letters. I write one and immediately have to write another one and they all have to sound like this was the job you wanted your whole life. Its so dramatic. 

There is a reason I am not a music journalist or critic. Respect.

January 23rd, 2016

Lucky for me, writing is like riding a bike and once I get started, after doing a good amount of music description writing research, I can go for a few hours and come up with something half way decent. I hope. I don't know why I complain, I just hate getting started more than motorcycles taking the last parking spot.

Here is what I came up with!

General Music Description
Singer/songwriter, female pop vocals with subtle hints of folk and rock, featuring layered harmonies, contemporary piano-based orchestration, and powerhouse vocals drifting through moments of lyrical and aural intimacy, rage, and reflection.

Not bad, I like the use of rage and intimacy together. It's like my music is sexy or something.

Burn Single Description
Being the title track and single of my upcoming album, Burn is a culmination of lyrical passions, fiery vocals, and an empowering arrangement. With breathtaking piano, vibrant trumpets, and intricate harmonies, Burn has come to represent such a monumental part of my soul. It has led me on countless journeys including raising my own personal awareness of domestic violence, watching the exponential effect it has on people and myself with every performance, and filming my first professional music video. Every song on this album holds a significance in my heart and my life, however, Burn taught me how powerful my fire could be—Burn changed me. Thus, the overarching theme of this album is transformation. 

Inspired by true events, Burn raises awareness of the 2,000 battered women in America who are serving time in prison for defending their lives against their abusers. As high as 90% of women in prison today for killing men were abused and battered by those men. Women charged with the death of a partner have the least extensive record of any people convicted. 

Domestic violence is a costly war waging behind closed doors of outdated societal constructs and silence for the sake of protecting our psychological comfort. 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have been physically abused by an intimate partner. Domestic violence hotlines receive nearly 30,000 calls on a typical day. Mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, daughters, sons, friends, neighbors, colleagues have all been victims in some way or another because this sickness affects us all. 

When we ask why they stay, or question why they let it progress, we are inadvertently victim-blaming. So, I encourage everyone to ask themselves, if you had to leave your home today, could you? Could you abandon the memories, stability, finances, time, sense of family, promises, futures, and hopes that an abuser might change? Because when we advise women and men to avoid victimization, we expect that they can and will irrevocably restart their lives. 

All I ask for is awareness. Employ empathy, comprehension, and presence to this battle and stand with me—with thousands of men and women—against domestic violence. Because if you or someone you care about has not been directly affected by domestic violence, statistics show that that day will come. Let’s rise to lessen those chances!

I'm actually really proud of this one because I just went for it. I let my feminist all hang out and had to stop myself towards the end because I started beating the shit out of the keyboard. 

I love the word irrevocably. Such a good feeling word to say. Very sexy on the tongue. 

But seriously, look at these stats. My heart hurts. 

Artist Biography
I am a 24 year old singer songwriter from northern California. I have been singing for 20 years and writing for 10. I released one album, Let Me Go, in 2013 with the achievement of my bachelor's degree in music recording technology and will be releasing my second album, BURN, in January 2016. The album was a culmination of songs written during my time studying for my masters degree in songwriting before is turned into an album conceptualized by transformation, self-discovery, and acceptance. The album will be accompanied by my first professional music video for the title track and single, BURN, featured on my YouTube channel

My music background consists of 10+ years of professional vocal studies, two degrees in music, an incredible experience in the top 75 contestants of American Idol season 12, multiple occasion anthem singer for the San Francisco Giants, and countless achievements in competitive singing and performance across California. I am very fortunate to have led the life I have and experienced the things that have created the person I am today.

My music is characterized as singer-songwriter, female pop vocals with subtle hints of folk and rock, featuring layered harmonies, contemporary piano-based orchestration, and powerhouse vocals drifting through moments of lyrical and aural intimacy, rage, and reflection. My influences include Sara Bareilles, Anna Nalick, Christina Perri, Ingrid Michelson, A Fine Frenzy, Adele, Ryan Tedder, Jason Mraz, Jesse J, Barcelona and Pink to name a few!

That one wasn't so bad because I can talk about myself pretty easily :) I know how old I am and what I do with my life and who I like to think I sound like and stuff. Meh

Let Me Go Album Description
As my first album, Let Me Go is 10 years of songwriting and life in an hour long CD. They say that's why your first album is your best. I watched these songs take form in ways I could never imagine and am so grateful to the people who made that possible. Every song has deep meaning and ties into one another in ways only I may understand. However, I hope Let Me Go takes you on a journey through your own self discovery and triumphs as it took me when I needed it the most. This album is the beginning of what I hope will be a long career in the future.

Let Me Go tells a classic story about finding and losing love and ourselves, and discovering how to keep going when we are young, hopeless, helpless, eager, and so lost in this world. I found a way to breathe during those timeless experiences through vibrant harmonies, commanding piano, empowered vocals, and heart wrenching strings. Let Me Go takes me from 16 years old, feeling second best in an imaginary, but overwhelming race; to 18 years old, learning how to cope with giving half of me to someone I thought deserved it; and finally reaching 21 and understanding that everything happens for a reason and I am one step closer to the rest of my life. This album is my baby and I embrace it for what it is—the anthems of my youth. I know Let Me Go will forever be the first step of many and I praise this album for that and everything that comes with that title.

“I’ve waited a very long time to hear my music like this. I cannot put into words how much I love this album for the story it tells, what it stands for, and the hard work many people put into it. For that, I cannot thank you all enough. One thing that sets this album apart is that it represents me and so many others who connected with my music and collaborated with me in making it what it is now.” (May 2013)

I had a good time writing this one actually. I already had something written for it -- as you can see in the last section. I put it in quotes because I wanted it to be obvious that I write better than I did then. I want to sound like I have a Master's degree or something. Or maybe I subconsciously wanted to feel more important and quote myself since I'm the only one talking about this album :)

Check out this beauty. I'm so good and photos. And climbing. Let Me Go album art at it's finest.

Burn Album Description
My second album, Burn, is a selection of the best songs written during my year abroad. This collection of songs started as a portfolio and has since evolved into something I am very proud to call my second album. My first album, Let Me Go, was a culmination of songs written over the course of 10 years. Burn was written in one, and demonstrates a maturity and growth that compliments my own. Burn is a story of transformation in all ways. All 11 tracks have a special story and a unique journey from inception to final composition and the more I listen to it, the more I realize how much this album resembles my own journeys and transformations in the last 3 years.

Before submitting Burn as my major project in 2014, I submitted two 6 track EPs comprised in part by these songs. The first was titled The Story, and the second was titled It's All Happening (inspired by Kate Hudson's mantra in Almost Famous). Burn truly is a story and reminds me of that mantra. Each song embodies the overarching theme of transformation wether it be a battered woman rising against domestic abuse, an apology written from me to my 18 year old self, or Breaking Bad's, Skyler White, realizing her husband's lies have buried him and their marriage forever. Let me take you on a journey through endless layers of harmonies, meticulously composed string arrangements, empowered vocals, and a chorus of emotionally enriched drums, bass, and guitars provided by some of my closest musical friends. These stories and lyrics earned me a Masters degree and I am delighted to finally share them with the world.

A little more concise. I am so excited to release this baby next month at the album release party happening at Cannery Row Brewing Company on Tuesday, February 9th, 2016! 

Transform with me ;)


Like I said, its like riding a unicycle with two Scandinavian women doing Twister handstands on your shoulders. You never really forget how to write like a goddamn adult with a post-graduate degree.

I can't believe this took me so long to get around to. I am a horrible self-promoting musician. Someone come help me!

I'm getting pretty good at this illustrator thing ----------->
Don't ask me to do anything else in that program, like crop a photo, make a mask, or perform non-destructive editing BECAUSE I CANT. 

So much angst today. 

But seriously, come to the album release.


Saturday, 9 January 2016

I Needed Time to Mend

I know it's been a long time since I wrote about the beautiful world of Songwriting, but I had to find where I fit again, this time in Monterey, California. Relocating isn't hard. Actually, the thought of being in one place forever seems horrible. But let me tell you, picking yourself up after you finally finish school sucks. It's been over a year since I came home and only in the last 6 months have I made progress in my musical career. Sometimes we just need time.

Let's catch up :)

September 2014
I moved home and in with my family. (Goodbye best friend #1 Sonia)

November 2014
I moved out and found a new home in Old Monterey with Zak and Matt Gin.

January 2015
Zak left for Cornerstone Theater Company's The Tempest: California Bridge Tour. Greg was accepted to NYU for Audio Engineering and moved to New York. (Goodbye best friend #2) Lexi moved to Japan to teach English. (Goodbye best friend #3)

I got my college job back at the World Theater at Cal State Monterey Bay while I furiously searched for other jobs in Songwriting, Singing, and Audio Engineering. I had $12 to my name and ate peanut butter on bananas for over a week.

February 2015
I was hired as supporting technical crew for Cornerstone Theater Company when they came through Salinas, California.

March 2015
I got hired by McCune Audio Visual as a AV technician and learned how to drive and load box trucks.

I cut my hair off and died it blond again :)

April 2015
I found out that I was being considered for the next Master Electrician position for Cornerstone's The Tempest.

I was asked to perform for campus band night at CSU Monterey at the Black Box Cabaret.

I was rehired by the Black Box Cabaret as a lead sound technician for the purposes of training new employees.

May 2015
I left for the Cornerstone tour including Eureka, San Francisco, and Los Angeles!

July 2015
I turned 24 and spend two weeks in Lake Tahoe with my friends and family.

I started training in Seibukan Jujutsu at the dojo downtown!

August 2015
I met one of the owners of Tart Collections at a gig and modeled their new Rella Coat, which is breath taking!

I decided that I wanted to shoot a music video for my album single, BURN and I needed to find a director. I found that director and it was all downhill from there! Joe Ramos and Alyssa Carter with Beyond the Fence Films gave me the positivity and enthusiasm I needed to make the music video happen!

I went to Ninja Camp with the dojo. It was so awesome.

I picked up another job with Havas Street as a brand Ambassador for Heineken to get that extra financial help! AKA I became a Heineken Girl!
September 2015
I started work at the Black Box and the World Theater again and began saving up for the music video budget. I started working at Medialocate again as well.

I re-imagined the single, BURN, to make it as amazing as the music video was about to be which included re-recording the piano with an incredible pianist (Juan Zamora, CSUMB), bass (Cameron Reed), and added Trumpet (Avery Suazo).

October 2015
I went down to Burbank, CA to film the video and I can't even begin to express how incredible the experience was and how professional it turned out! Absolutely worth every cent and much much more.

I released the BURN teaser after having a ball editing up a cool 30 second clip of the song!

I left my job at McCune Audio Visual to work full time at Medialocate, CSUMB, and Havas.

(Not to mention, start focusing on music!)

November 2015
The music video was released on Friday, November 13th!

I continued to work with Zak on the rest of the album to keep the momentum up and stick to the schedule of a 2016 album release.

December 2015
I put Burn on Spotify, iTunes, CD Baby, and Bandcamp.

iTunes link:

<--------- I learned how to pathetically use Adobe Illustrator!

I spent too much money on Christmas.

It took me way too long to figure out that I am happiest when I am working towards a goal, but at the same time, I had never been without school before. It was such a huge change to find myself on the outside of that protective bubble and it felt like a depressing wet towel weighing me down until I picked myself up. Like I always do when shit gets hard.

I guess I finally realized that shit will always be hard and to revel in that. Because if I never had to work, cry, bleed for the things I want in life, I would never feel the overwhelming sense of pride and accomplishment when I do succeed.

I just needed a little time to mend.