First and foremost, let's get money talk out of the way. We've reached $200 a month!!! That means every month I will post a brand new song to my page, as well as a live video. :-) I've aaallllmmmoooosttt been maintaining this regardless, so I may come up with a few more gifties. I think I doubted that it was really possible for me to reach the goals I set, to be honest. SO now that I've got to get over that mentality, let's play a bit more with them shall we?
Ok, the fun stuff. These past two weeks have been FULL. I've spent two nights in Sebastopol, first at a community gathering called Bean Night, which is an informal open mic followed by a jam. (And yes, we eat beans...) I have known about the event for a couple of years, and this was my first time actually making it. I felt immediately at home and feel like I have found a musical family. Humble, beautifully talented and open-hearted people who like to play music and make art, celebrate one another, and chill in nature. Yes. These are my people.
Living in the city, I've been breathing in my chest recently to be honest, and immediately upon landing in the rainy pasturelands of Sebastopol, my full being relaxed, and I felt myself breathing deep and full. I've been reassessing the likelihood that I am meant to live in an urban environment at all after experiencing such a strong visceral reaction to landing in nature.
It's funny, I grew up in the Santa Cruz Mountains, and often felt like an outsider, like I wanted to be living in the midst of the cultural capitals of the world in order to belong. After spending a number of years doing so, i.e. living in Madrid, Los Angeles, Austin and San Francisco, I'm now finding that I feel clearer and more creative when I can easily flow between the city and the country, and really take a lot of time and personal space to ground and create in the quiet peace of nature.
So that's been on my mind. We'll see. For now, the Bay is opening her arms lovingly. Stellar and I booked three gigs in mid November, one seemingly a direct answer to my prayer sent out two weeks ago about Standing Rock. On November 17th, we will be proctoring an event at The Center SF, thanks to the lovely connection created by our dear friend Glendon Papa. The Center SF is a yoga studio and community and arts events center. They have a tea room and often host community events in the gorgeous space. When Stellar and I sat down to meet with Ksenia, the events coordinator, she simply asked us "What has been up for you lately? What is in your heart, and what type of event would you like to create?" We immediately began discussing a benefit concert, and have since established that we'll host a tea-gathering with a Lakota Tribe member and activist speaking, and two or three other musicians. Anastasia Van Wingerden has agreed to play with us, and if timing works out, the talented Travis Puntarelli will be joining us all as well. We will donating 100% of proceeds to Standing Rock, and collecting warm winter clothes to send directly to those who are camped out. There are many details to iron out, but it feels good to be able to create a space for change, however small.
This past weekend, I spent two days hulled up in hitting the studio recording an official demo. A friend offered to record (for free!), and he and I have been working through a few new arrangements of my material. It's my first experience with a click-track, so it's taking longer than anticipated, but SOON I will post some samples! We managed to record guitar and percussion (the talented Bradley Cox joined me on cajon. He's also the gent who took the above photograph. He's brilliantly talented. Check out Giant Eye Photography.), and we will be adding vocals and strings this next week.
Feels good, rewarding, exhausting, confusing, and challenging to be hustling this much, but my heart and soul are in this.
Thank you all for the support, I'm looking forward to sharing more with you.
Much love and gratitude,