Monday, July 16, 2012

Song's Serenity Mixtape I or Serenity: The First Mixtape

Howdy Folks!

      It's been two weeks and I have been surfing all over the net. There is way too much info out there to read, but I wanted to upload some songs that never got released. I am soon going back into the studio, and as you all know the studio is expensive. Being an independent artist and all, we have to do it all ourselves. My first thing will be to sell songs. Et Voila that's how I got a mixtape. There are 7 songs with a few of them in different mixes.   You can buy just one song for $0.99 or all eleven songs for $9.99. It will go a long way in helping me to create my next Opus as it were............

Et Voila these are the songs:

Serenity: The First Mixtape,      Song's Serenity Mixtape I, or just plain "Serinity" :

These Changes~~ I Need You~~ These songs were composed by the stupendous drummer out of Bordeaux, France named Didier Ottaviani. Super cool dude married to one of my best friends and colleagues Monique Thomas-Ottaviani, who also writes some lyrics and melodies with me. Didier works with a lot of groups mostly jazz, but he has such a wonderful talent for writing songs in soul and gospel! I am honored!

And I~~Beautiful and Wonderful~~ These songs were composed by Jerome Jouannard a super cool studio engineer with his own studio vibestone in Paris,France! I didn't record these songs there, but I did record some other songs at his studio. Really badass studio! Jerome prefers to be the excutive producer, although, he has written music for some popular rap groups in Paris also... Like Tiemoko for example!

It's Your Love I Need~~ was composed by Grim outta Houston Texas. He's the one that  composed the songs on my very first CD In The Fireplace in 1999. He also mixed these songs (pretty quickly) for me. Thanks Grim!

Right On My Way~~ this song was composed by jusFresh from Bayswater Records out of Houston,Tx. Bayswater is the label that recorded and released my first ever CD in 1999. This was my love ballad to a now ex-boyfriend. I think the lyrics still ring true today!

I Give Up On Givin' Up~~ I wrote this song myself one day when I was feeling at my lowest point. Being an independent artist is quite challenging and sometimes I have felt like I just want to quit, but I can't! It's inside me and stronger than I could ever be. So, I added this as a reminder to myself and to anyone else who needs a little reminder. We are our dreams!!

So here's the link to buy:

Serenity : The First Mixtape or Serinity

I uploaded the songs late at night and put the wrong title on it. I am trying to change it, but I may have to stick with "Serinity"..... We can't always be perfect! Peace and light and see you soon!

P.S. Every photo here was taken by Heidi Powell Prera... You should look her up in Houston,Tx!

 A few years ago I worked with this really cool "chick" on a movie set. We became fast friends. In talking with her more I found out that she was a writer. I wanted her to write my bio for me.  Her name is Felicia Johnson. She was at that time very busy and so was I and we never finished the bio. I found this old interview in my archive and thought I'd blog it with some pics ....

What does it feel like when you are on stage?

Well the first moments just before I go on I get a rush  and then I hear the music and it’s as if the bass and the drums melt into my bones and then into my heart beat. I close my eyes for a second or two and it’s just me and God.  Sometimes it’s just me. And then I have this overwhelming joy  and I’m just happy to be there.  It feels like understanding and acceptance for who I am no matter what I do.  It’s all surreal really funny, but sometimes it feels like I’m not really there.  It’s like there is another existence or entity who gets inside me and I just get to witness it because I am there. I know kinda weird.

What inspires me?

Well the first thing is just simple things. The very basics that we overlook sometimes because of our own complexities. I am inspired by nature, by love, by hate, injustice,racism, happiness, sadness they all inspire me one way or another. Or sometimes a melody  will just arrive in my head in which case I would say the song itself inspired me to vocalise it, to make it real.  I never know what thing will inspires me next, but when it does I enjoy it and try to let it live it’s full potiential.  Other artists inspire me too. Like Bilal, he inspires me to try anything even if it’s bad because you live the music then and it can live through you.

Why do I sing?

Well it’s a long story. I started singing for the very first time with my sisters, we sang in church.  Then as a teenager I would sing  around  the house and stuff like that.  And one day, while listening to Anita Baker, a Sade video came on tv (regular tv). That completely changed my life I was like whoa…. Look at this woman with such grace and poise and so restrained is her bitterness, and love, and sadness.I felt like that is what I want to be. That’s what’s inside me, I connect with that  I went to my mother and said Ma I want to sing. And she told me to concentrate on my studies , got to college, and then I could decide if I really wanted to be singer or if it was just a phase. Sure enough it is still a burning desire today. I was singing everywhere in the shower, in the yard, in school, at work while sweeping or serving customers. And then I saw my first live band "602" in Austin. I was blown away. I realised that the need to do this was bigger than any feeling I have ever had. Any thought of quitting just brings an overwhelming pain and despair.  When singing helps to eliviate those very emotions. I know that it could be dangerous to say these words, but singing is like that for me. There is nothing more gratifying to my soul than singing.

How has living in France helped/hurt/enhanced my career?

Well my time in france really would take pages and pages, so let me just say that I actually had major life changes and subsequent growth as an artist. It was the first time I ever had the chance to lead a band. The first time that I ever booked gigs. Talking to managers and owners. I was also freed from certain stigmas in music. I began to see music as a business that has to be built from the ground up. That I could make some kind of career with my dream.I learned persistence. I met a lot of musicians and artists young and old. I’ve been jipped on concerts. I’ve been paid well. I’ve gotten more stage experience and well that’s been all good. I’ve been living a professional musician life.  The downside is that I am not hearing everything that drops in the States. Not the commercial stuff, but that new stuff like Eric Roberson or Jazmine Sullivan.  I seem to be out of the loop. Or I feel like  that. Some people would say that’s a good thing though because I am more focused on what I do and not what others are doing. That’s really hard for me because it seems like artists are moving in that new wave of energy and we kinda all feelin’ the same thing. So. I just listened to other music there. I have listened to more African music, french music, british stuff. It’s good for me to be exposed to some other cats. Being in France opened my eyes to the rest of the world. I started seeing what’s going on in Africa, in China, in Europe, you know just everywhere. I started realizing just how global we really are today.  I’ve gone to more concerts. I have bought a few more cd’s not everything, but suff I like. I learned to open my ears so to speak. It was always so expensive to see concerts and stuff at home because the cost of living is so high.  While I was in France,  I decided that it was more important to live the music in order to be a part of it. So I took advantage of the time and just jumped right in to the scene.

What singers old and new, do you like so much that you would buy their album for everybody you know?

Well there are many artists that I like and appreciate. First on my list would have to be Anita Baker because she just touched me so much with her voice. After that well there are many Sade, Zapp Mama, Bobby McFerrin, Keziah Jones, Julie Dexter, Eric Roberson, Bilal, Les Nubians, M,Omar, Jill Scott,  Manu Chao, Sarah Vaughn , Billie Holiday and well I’ll stop there. But, of course if I bought all these albulms for everyone I knew I’d be broke .(ha ha ha ha). I’d give these though because I think these artists would be completely new to some of my friends and defintely my family.

What next on the menu for Song?
What have you been doing in the time betweenn albulms?

 I combined these two questions because for me they go together. I  have just been experiencing life and love between the albulms. I went through a lot of self discovery, which is helping to really mold me into the woman I dream to be.  I have been honing my skills on stage and in the studio and I’ve been learning french. The next thing on the menu is to establish a place for myelf in the industry and musical community.  I hope to do that with honesty and love, because I believe if you’re honest in the music the music wiill be honest with you. So now it’s upwards and onwards.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Let Love Shine Update

Sweet Soul Records Blog Update
April 22, 2012
Well folks it’s been years since I’ve kept a proper blog. I won’t even try to count them. I believe my last blog was last year around the time I released “Let Love Shine” with Sweet Soul Records.  Since the invention of such pages like Myspace and Facebook, I feel like I make these daily posts filled with information. Quick blurbs. Quickly passing by like a star in the night. I have however started a website and I realize it’s nice to update it every now and then. So, this will be short and sweet at least I hope. I am truly a horrible writer, I seem to right in conversation form forsaking all the rules that my English teachers instilled in me.

But, if you can read without judgement I will write. I will try and check the spelling and all that before I post. So, I have just returned from my first real concert in Tokyo with the label Sweet Soul Records! I must say it was quite an event “Tokyo Soul Drive Vol: 5”. There were 4 DJ’s and three live bands all soul and believe it or not:  all hard! DJ Hiroking the wizard behind the curtain for this event works very closely with Sweet Soul Records to create a real soul movement on Japan! What an awesome endeavour for these two men to attempt. I myself am super honored to have been invited and to have participated in the fifth edition of this audacious (on every level) event.    Our host for Tokyo Soul was the famous

  DJ Hiroking                                               

Our guest host MC for the evening was MC Taro Soul:

Some of the other DJ’s were

 DJ Yuka 


and the bands were great like this young lady:

the lovely Kaori Sawada  Kaori Sawada                                                                                                                              of Lightsound Records!! So beautiful this lady in spirit and voice and then there was this funk band called

which of course had a young lady leading the crowd of horns, drums and percussion, well you know funk band… and then myself…. With the band I toted ”The Bowling Masachists”

cause we went bowling before the gig… There was Akira on the bass, Naoki on keys, Luois on drums, Me and Tak ,,, the other guy is the infamous DJ Hiroking who invited me in! Thanks man! That was awesome, but not advisable to other bands cause it’ll take your energy away from the show. And when I tell you that we danced till 6 in the morning ,  I mean we really danced  til 6 in the morning. Great great music being spent by the DJ’s, stuff I hadn’t heard in 10- 15 years. I was sweating like a pig (which I am but we’ll talk Chinese later) after my little gig!

But these cats that came to the gig really got into the soul drive… They really put as much heart into dancing to it as we did in singing it….  IT really was awesome ! You guys should get yourselves out there to a Tokyo Soul Drive it’s way worth the money!

A week before Tokyo I was down in Shizuoka! I tasted some wonderful foods and drank some unusual concoctions. We did an acoustic concert at Pimper’s Paradise and then prepared for another concert at Kentos  some people were even wearing my t-shirts:

You can get your Song t-shirt at my store……. What store you say? Hmmmmmmmmmmmm I will work that out soon…..
I will do a blog on Shizuoka soon, cause it was a really cool place to spend some time and learn a little about Japanese culture.
Well that’s all I can think of right now so I will get back with more later.. Blurb… We’ll see how you are feeling about it…
Talk to you soon,

Monday, January 09, 2006

Happy New Year .....8 Days...Late


How we doin? Well we are just fine lol. This year has had a great start!! I have been spending lot's of time on the (check it). It's fun because I have met some very interesting people on this site. In the in between time I have done a couple of cool gigs. One in Switzerland, in the mountains. Can you believe it? They like soul music even in the mountains. For me, it was quite amazing. It was minus 15 degrees C° and I'm telling you you I drank hot wine...Hmmmmmmm good!!!

Lot's of things have happened. I have finished lot's of songs for my albulm (that seems to be taking 10 years to make lol) I will be represented at the Midem this year, very cool. Decided not to sign with that last label.... not right for me. But I keep meeting other people so I stay positive. I am still with the Rimshot Crew here in Paris. We have just started doing concerts again!! Very cool! we will be playing in Spain next week!!! In Valencia, beautiful place this town.

I have decided next month to begin working on changing this site. I know it's about time lol......... Anyway, it's hard trying to do everything yourself. I have a lot of respect for those people who manage to do a thousand things a day and be an artist. They must never sleep. I like sleep too much, but I am working on that.

I would like to send out some positive vibes and love for the new year 2006. May we all know and feel love. May we all be blessed. And may we laern tolerance for others!!!!! I'll be back soon Untill then........Peace!!!!

Monday, November 14, 2005

And the Sims 2 Loose...By a Knock-out

I knew that if I reached out about my problem, ok addiction to the game, I would get some much needed help. No really, after a few days of that, I had enough. My addiction totally lies with my M box and my new found interest in Wow, how cool to network with so many people. It is also however very addicting, I must pay attention here. I am coming along with my little ditties. It seems I am not a very technical kind of girl. So, working with this thing is becoming a major challenge. Trying to get down this bounce to disk thing. I keep getting it wrong. Well, I'll just have to keep working on it and something will turn out. Going to see some live soul music this week. It promises to be a very vibing week. Cool. That's all for now unless.......Well yeah that's all for now...............

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Paris is Burning!!!!

Hello, folks what's the news? Well the news is that Paris is burning, or at least the media will have you believe that. It's amazing how the with the right images you can really make things look really bad. My friends and family have been calling me and asking me if I am alright and if I am safe. Well I'll tell you although it is true that there are cars, buses, houses, and streets burning, I haven't been directly affected. It seems to be the age old story, new government politicians decide to make a mark and show their power. So to begin they start to clean up the "bad" neiborhoods, putting more cops on the street in the "ghettos". Which of course makes it hard for any drug dealer to make his dough. Of course, they get real angry about it , but they continue to work. But, as the weeks pass more and more cops are stopping people in the metro searching bags, and checking identification and stuff.... Then one day two teens (running from the police, so they thought) jump a fence, which has a huge sign on it that says Electricity Danger, and die of electrocution. So, the people say,"Enough is Enough". Now I am no expert and I can only give my interpretation of what's happening. I think that there are too many problems here. People are trying to survive, but at the sametime they make life hard for others. Here, in France the government takes care of a lot of people with monthly checks and so forth. Even those who come from other countries. But the problem is some of them take that money and buy dope, cut it, and then sell it. All the while creating the Ghetto that they have come to hate so much. It's like any large American city. People are afraid to walk after dark. Here I am being thrilled with the idea of walking to the store at night without worrying about any major altercations, and some young punks go and spoil it. Well, I guess I was seeing the signs. You know gangster rap is huge here just like in the U.S. Although this is NOT the cause, it's a sign that I noticed. The kids look and dress like the kids from my old neiborhoods. Not only that they want to really "live" the image of drug dealing, badass. On top of that they are truly suffering from racism and can't get jobs easily, so why not sell drugs.... Well the problem is that there are some real criminals and then those who just don't see another way. Whose got the answers? I am just wondering. I come from the ghettos of Detroit. I lived in a nice little house with my sisters and brother. And I did join a gang for all of 3 days. And even with all that I didn't become so angry that I hated the Man. I never felt like I couldn't get out. I was always interested in what was happening somewhere else. I guess that's why I wanted to travel. I kept thinking it's better some where else. But it's funny "the world is a ghetto", really everywhere. We all suffer. We all got issues. We all have seen teenage pregnancy, drug dealing, Breaking and entering, etc happen in our cities. Well, maybe not all of us, but a lot of us.

So, now the hoodlums have decided to wage war against the police. Keeping them busy by burning everything in sight. I personally think that that is a dumb thing to do. I mean you might be burning your homeboy's grandmother's car that she needs to get her meds. Or burning down the gym where kids in the hood play basketball. Where they gonna go now? I mean why burn the place where you live? Where is the pride? Now these fires have spread as far north as Germany, and even in the south of France. Now the city of Paris is under the watchful eyes of about 1,00 more police. All with big guns and black military looking busses and the likes. I hope things will calm down. It is very French to revolt, I mean this is the lad of revolution. So this spirit is in the people. If they don't like something they fight!!!!! I am sad to hear though that a few people, who have nothing to do with this have died. I mean a man walking down the street, minding his own business was attacked and beat to death. He was 60 and not a cop and just walking. Okay now that I have ranted on, I feel a little better. Things will get back to normal, so I hope. In the meantime, it's a heyday for poets and slammers and songwriters......Maybe in about two months the artists will all have their opinions documented for the history of Paris....or at least for the people of Paris.... Talk to you soon. When I can think straight....LOL

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Attack of Sims 2...Let the Shame begin....

Hello fellow Friends,
I am here to talk about a weird thing happening to me now. I have become totally addicted to Sims 2 Nightlife in the course of two days of play. The problem comes from sitting at my computer and learning how to record on my M box. I look up and there's an extension pack to the regular Sims 2 that I play from time to time. Well just when I thought that my head would explode with all these technical things like how to successfully "bounce" a song, I decided ok a little break from this. So I installed the extension pack (like 3 times because I am so not computer saavy), and finally it works. When I looked up two and a half hours had just passed. I was like oh man..... I gotta stop this.

So, I start working on my little project again, when I get bored again. Back to the game. This time I spent like 3 and a half hours on it. I can't believe it. I am like a kid in this game. Creating my dream house. Singing Karioke, dancing with vampires, making an empire of buildings. Disocvering that I got quite an eye for some decorations and absolutely no taste when it comes to their clothes and stuff. How funny. Anyway, I don't know how these gamers do it. Play for weeks. My shoulders and finger tendons hurt like a mug. They're all cramped up. It's cold now in the house so my toes are frozen seems like. Lol....

And then today, what did I do? Well I played again of course. I learned how to put my own music in the game so now all the sims are dancing to my songs. That's so great for the Anyway, I am feeling terribly guilty for playing this game. I thought if I confessed and got a few comments, it would help me to quit. One step at a time. Maybe I should play Quake III, that'll make me forget. A little violence, what are we coming to? I am ashamed because I wonder if someone over 25 should play video games? Isn't there a law against that? Well I will keep breaking this law. I feel like I am 10 years old and I love it!!!!! Hooray, for the EA Games guys, my heroes. Well I better get back to my M box, technical things take time to learn. Maybe now I can purge myself from the game.....Momentarily that is. What's your vice?