Saturday, 20 December 2014

Music Is a Scary Journey

Music is a scary journey for me

Have you ever gone up to your parents and said I want to be a singer/rapper? What did they say? My friends often ask me, will I be happy if I don't make it in music? Will I be happy having a desk job for the rest of my life?

Well to answer those questions, I haven't told my parents that my dream is to become the biggest artist ever known and have my name up there with Mr. Tupac Shakur. To answer my friends’ questions, I don't know. All I know is that my dream is my dream, and I am young and I won't be able to live with myself knowing that I had an opportunity to chase this dream and didn't take it. I am going to school for computer science and it is an interesting field but it's no music career.

It's funny because I never knew about the work involved behind the scenes in music to get your name out there, I always thought that if I focused on my lyrics and made them meaningful, I would automatically get noticed.

In school they teach you about mathematics and sciences which are very important but they never teach you what you actually need to succeed in the real world. You need to know how to talk and relate to people and you need to know how to sell yourself, which is what I am learning how to do at the moment, but am not fully succeeding. I tried to learn a new language last year on my own through various websites, but it did not turn out perfectly- and that's what promoting myself feels like.

I've always focused on my lyrics and what I talk about, but now I'm learning something new and getting my feet wet; I dive in.

Isla's Straightjacket Escape

Isla's Straightjacket Escape

I have been practicing magic for 15 years now and performing for 12. Practice is a major part of performances; I usually practice some form of magic every day.  My daughter Isla is two and has been around both her mom and me while we performed since before she was born! Adreanna remained my "lovely assistant" on stage until she was about 5 months pregnant. When Isla was a month old, she attended our show at the Saskatoon Festival of trees Father Daughter Gala.  One could almost say show business in her blood! She routinely watches us practice and rehearse and pals around with the actors in the improv troupe whenever they come by. (For anyone who doesn't know, our business isn't just about magic. We also feature Off the Cuff, an improv troupe headed by Adreanna.)  Now Isla is at the age where she is amazed when I have something in my hand and suddenly it disappears, so performing magic for her is great.

Last week Isla saw me getting ready for a show, packing my case and making sure I was bringing my straitjacket and not Adreanna's.  Isla was interested and asked if she could put it on, so like any parent wanting to see what would happen I did up the arms and one strap at the top and encouraged her to escape.  I hope you all enjoy her first attempt at an escape! She was great and I was really proud of her effort. Have fun watching!

Friday, 5 December 2014

Ronda Rozon's "End of Day" Music Video!

The Waterfall

As the weather becomes colder, most of us want to hunker down and stay close to home in our nice warm places.

The other day we were filming outside for the last shoot of the video.  Our location was a most inspiring, beautiful spot near Goldstream Park in Victoria, BC.  We were amidst towering trees and a waterfall as high as Niagara!  Every hue of green, gold and red surrounded us.  The sound of the flowing water was mesmerizing. My desire was to sit and drink it all in.  The air was so refreshing.

I had to cross over the frigid, meandering water in order to get to the sweet photo spot beside the waterfall. The rocks were slippery and I had to make some long jumps between the rocks .  I had my guitar on my back and a blanket and a bag in my hands.  It was a challenging balancing act.  One that I did not win.   At one point my feet landed in the cold waters - “Brrr!”

As I carefully stepped from stone to stone I made my way to the spot and settled in for the shoot.  The force of the waterfall was causing water to spray over me and the wind was blowing cold air all around.  It was so cold I could see my breath!

This was fast becoming a labour of love!  Ken had brought over the music for my song and he showed me how to work the player and then he returned to the other side of the water.  Now was the really hard part: being filmed!  I find it challenging to be in front of the camera .  I wanted this to be a great video but truly wished I didn’t have to be the center of attention.  I much prefer to be captured in a natural, authentic way without having to pose for filming.  I knew that it was necessary, so I tried my best to be creative in some movement to the music.  Ken was considerate and kept the filming short and sweet.

I made my way back to the other side where we did some filming inside the trunk of a tree (a very cool little space).  Climbing up and over the rocks I felt invigorated and alive.  To be amongst such natural beauty was such a gift.

As we packed up I marveled at the wonder of the waterfall!  It was amazing and I had never experienced it before.  How could I have missed this my whole life?  The whole space was magical!..Like being in some far off mystical, spiritual, distant land.

I looked back for a moment and pondered upon the privilege of living in such an incredible paradise.

Monday, 1 December 2014

Teemus Supreme & the Song Writing Process

Hip-Hop Artist Teemus Supreme: "Always finish something you start"

A song is one thing, but a video is another. I never imagined myself being part of a music video, let alone making my very own music video for my very own music. I used to listen to music on the radio and wish that I could rap and sing just like those popular artists. I never knew music could come so naturally. The lyrics that I write flow naturally and I never have to push them out; any time I feel an emotion (which for us human beings is like all the time) I take out my phone, or if I have a pen and paper out, start pouring out my emotions into verses. People say they often struggle to write one song- I've already written five. Could this be my ego talking, or do I possess actual talent? My writing process doesn't involve a beat, nor can I just sit and listen to a beat for hours and try to write a song specific to it. I just grab a pen and starting writing on a paper, I don't try to make the words rhyme and even though sometimes when I read what I've written down and it doesn't sound too good, I keep going because if there's one thing I've learned in this life, it's that no matter what always finish something you start. It is an interesting process when we record in the studio because I'll have a beat picked out that I want to record the track over but my lines or verses don't always line up to the beat. So I kind of take a "see how things go" type of approach. The music starts and I start singing, I let the music guide me and the words that come out of my mouth are mere expressions. Of course sometimes I either write too much or too little and so I'll make changes as I go forward with the verses. Sometimes I won't even have the verses completely written and sometimes the chorus isn't even written but that's what I like about the studio environment, it always brings out the best in me. This is only the start for me though, maybe I'm arrogant or maybe this is beginners luck and the struggle is yet to come. I've only recorded 3 songs thus far and am on my way to making my first music video for one of my very own song called "Fake Friends"