Heard it again last night at a show so… here goes… To the fans and patrons who ask, “What are you doing here” or chide “You need to go on American Idol and make it big,” or “You sound better than what’s her face…”
I never have to be rich or famous. It wasn’t the goal of getting into music. I wanted to be a lawyer -but I chose music bcuz it was my passion and nothing made me feel like it does. I’ve been blessed to travel and see many parts of the world and play with some really accomplished musicians well known and unknown. I am fortunate to have been able to make a living solely doing what I love and I honestly cannot imagine life any other way. If I died tomorrow, having known the love of my family, tried & true friends, a personal relationship with God, sharing my love of music w/audiences worldwide through my calling, and maybe being lucky enough to touch some lives through my gift, that is MY definition of a blessed and successful life. The only thing to top that, in my opinion, is being a mother.
Truthfully, I hate cameras (hence my lack of video) and too much attention. And to the surprise of some, I am an introvert. I’m working on that. But when I get on stage, I forget about who’s watching and I let the music happen. I am not a jealous person or ever competing with anyone else. My journey is my journey. Just as another has his/her own path and destiny. I have worked with singers who inspiringly sing circles around me as well as those I’ve wished would practice more. The beauty is I learn something from all of them. And some, may even learn from me. We all have something unique and beautiful to offer.
Each time I perform its about the JOY of what I can learn about my instrument that I haven’t learned times past. If I am connecting with that audience on a positive level. Growth. And we never stop learning as long as we truly love it.
Having several industry executives as friends I know a bit about the game and how its ever changing, the scarcity of positions to go around. At one point, a well known publishing house had a mere two employees staffed in office to handle their NY York branch. So the music industry is changing for everyone, not just music artists…
Back to the subject at hand, even if I were to be offered a major label deal again, it would more than likely not be a golden deal of eras past. Heck, I have friends tied to major deals with no release in sight that would PAY to get out of them if they could. Not to mention the number of famous recording artists starting their own label or going indie.
There are also other avenues for vocal talents to make a living behind the scenes, such as voiceovers, songwriting, sub-publishing and publishing deals and of course, back ground vocals. So the stage may not be the only income revenue for a performing artist.
So to club and venue patrons, I appreciate your vote of confidence, and though I got the call back for ‘The Voice’ I did not make it thru to the next round.
But—-if you believe in my talent and you really want to help me on my journey, an easy and direct way to do so is to purchase my music either at a show or via digital retailers worldwide or my website.
It goes a long way not just in encouragement but it also helps fund future recordings & projects. Don’t underestimate the power of one single purchase. Imagine if 100,000 or 250,000 ppl bought just one 0.99 single! Your support counts. And it keeps independent music going.
Thank you to those who have thus far supported me and my music via shows, sales or telling others about me and my music. I have some new music coming for you this year.
As always, I thank, appreciate and love all of you, immensely enjoy sharing the music experience with you. And I will with a happy and full heart, see you at the next show!
Peace, love and music,
On Spotify, iTunes, Amazon and digital retailer worldwide.
I am uber excited to be attending the pre-screening of The Good Life movie tonight with the title track co-written & sung by yours truly! I would like to personally invite you to ‘The Good Life’ movie premier/release party on March 10, 2013 in New Orleans, La where I will be performing the title track live. It is sure to be a night of fire!! Inbox me. I’ve got your ticket! And I’d love to see you there. Don’t miss out on The Good Life! Find out more here»>http://ow.ly/hVDRz
There can sometimes be an inclination to change that which surrounds us when wisdom is asking us to change ourselves, or better, not allow what surrounds us to change who and what we are. Effectively grasping and practicing this concept is when the words “Greater is he is that is in me, than he that is in the world,” can become life.
In an effort to better an environment, person, or situation we may offer to others what we consider to be good, solid advice or suggestions, not realizing what looks like could use some improving to you, is actually a warm, cushy bed of a comfort zone to another and by persisting, we actually lessen the energy of the light we are and increase the power of that which we seek to change.
My meditation and prayer today is on nonresistance. Resolving to bless an adverse situation can be hard to do and upon close examination something that needs to change in me and to resist, can be an even greater tormenting hell. The game of life can be so tricky because often you find that the greatest opponent you must conquer is your self.
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
2012 was a year of risk for me in which I left my comfort zone, and a life or normalcy and security to answer a call in my heart. Though I believed I had made the right choice, I also believed that firm conviction inherently had built in troubleshooters and problem deflectors. Foolishly I thought that the level of faith I had developed thus far would be enough to sustain me on my new journey home and that somehow having a covering and covenant with the Almighty would somehow render me exempt from any overly annoying or inconvenient trials, since I BELIEVED I had paid my spiritual dues already. HA! Well I am here to tell you that when God appoints you to task, he also requires that you arm yourself with NEW, fresher anointing and to reach that next level, you will definitely have to earn , yet again, more stripes.
But God is so awesome all the time. His grace is so sufficient. His ways never cease to amaze me. And he is the love of my life.
While I experienced situations that had to stretch me beyond my level of patience, faith, and tolerance, I am unregretfully grateful for them all. God used every single one of them to mold me into a better. stronger, wiser and more faith-filled ME.
Some of the things I learned and relearned in 2012 were:
Losing loved ones this year reminded me that so much time passes by, and that time should be, must be infused with love and purpose.
Though I am a trusting person by nature and try to believe the best of people, I learned that just because you have evolved to a certain point doesn’t mean that others have as well and vice versa. You cannot always expect people to do what you would do simply because that is your perspective on how things should be. You must set, verbalize, communicate and accept nothing short of your personal or professional standard bcuz “expecting” what seems to be a simple, given standard without communicating it, only gives those with low or no conscience, license to use and abuse your good intentions at will. That was a hard one for me and one that saddened me but taken, though not so gracefully at first. ;0)
I learned that no matter how kind and sincere you are with some folk, they will not like you for whatever reasons. It may be just because you are there, alive. It is wasted energy trying to convince insecure people that you mean them no harm. If people are threatened by what you have, who you are, your gifts and talents, blessings, accomplishments, there is absolutely nothing you can do to make them feel secure or better about themselves short of extinguishing your light. It is a call for them to grow and to better themselves and make the most of what God uniquely gave to them.
I was reminded that while things may look one way to the naked eye, God’s promises do not return void and that he is working it all out for our good if we trust him.
I learned that for me, hope is more important than faith though faith is needed. Hope is that seed in you that helps you grow faith. I was recently ministering to a homeless man and he didn’t know if he could make it but he wished one day he could have a normal life again. My response was, the fact that he still envisioned the prospect of things possibly being another way, that he hadn’t resigned himself to the notion that that was all there was for him meant he had hope. And as long as we have hope, that hope feeds our faith. Never lose hope, for without it, you cannot have faith.
I learned that it does not matter where you are, God will bring your gifts and talents before great men. I have recently been involved in amazing music and ministry projects coming out this year with ppl I tried in other places to meet that I never would have met had I not been where God appointed me to be. It doesn’t matter where you are as long as wherever you are, you are connected to the Source.
I learned that when you are loving self and living in love it is impossible for that which is the opposite to be a part of your inner circle or life. The two simply cannot co-exist. The closer you get to God, the more that which is not of him has to go. If the relationships or your inner circle is discordant, put more of the love of God in it and watch what happens. They will either heal and strengthen or be released and removed.
Today, I am, well, ACTUALLY for the past few months I have been BEAMING with happiness because God has really caused this year to be one of my greatest on so many levels, and I also see how what he has so meticulously worked out in me, has been so as to position me to help and empower others which was the whole point to begin with. All that we experience and overcome is for his glory and to help others. If not, it has been in vain.
I am thankful for so much, new music, new people and experiences, new vision, new church home, new friends, new perspectives, a new mind, but especially thankful that I have a new and wonderful love in my life besides God and music that loves me for all that I am. I am grateful that not only can I be love, live in love, give love but also experience the beauty of being in love with someone that God appointed just for me. I could not have planned it, for you just can’t write these things but if you remain faithful, you’ll never have to look for love. You will attract that which you are. And today I am ebullient in it and grateful and happy. I love you Juan.
I wish you all the very best this year, every happiness, and abundance and that it is your best one yet! I love you all. Peace love and music. And God at the center of all things. Happy New Year!!
By now, most of you have heard of the terrible aftermath of Hurricane Sandy which ripped through the East Coast of these United States on October 29th, 2012 causing over 55 deaths, leaving over 2 million without power, some without running water and many stranded in their homes, powerless due to flood waters. Sandy even caused fires burning more than 110 homes to the ground in the Far Rockaway area of Queens, NY.
With so much damage and pain widespread, it can leave one feeling helpless and paralyzed. But this is exactly the time we must pull together and do what we can. If it’s donating clothes to the Salvation Army or donating to the Red Cross, or giving blood, everything counts to those in need.
Below is a short list of agencies that are directly assisting those impacted by Hurricane Sandy. We are our brother’s keeper. Let’s keep the LOVE flowing. Feel free to add agencies to the comments section. Thank you and God bless us all.
*Giving Blood -The Red Cross began transporting donated blood to the East Coast as soon as Sandy started heading that way.
There was enough blood to take care of people’s needs after the storm. However, the Red Cross is worried that blood supplies could run low. Officials are asking donation centers around the country to boost blood donations so they can be in a position to send some of that to the East Coast. To donate blood at your local Red Cross call, 1-800-RED-CROSS OR visit, http://www.redcrossblood.org/donating-blood
*FEMA To apply for FEMA assistance online or via smartphone:
*AmeriCares is delivering relief supplies, bottled water and a fully-equipped mobile clinic for families in the tri-state area affected by Hurricane Sandy. The aid organization is sending 5,000 Johnson & Johnson hygiene kits stocked with soap, shampoo, toothpaste and other personal care items to emergency shelters and aid distribution centers. AmeriCares is working with The Salvation Army, World Cares Center and other nonprofit organizations to distribute the kits to affected families in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.
To learn more about AmeriCares Hurricane Sandy relief efforts, or to make a donation, please go to americares.org
*Volunteer Follow the #SandyVolunteer hashtag on twitter for breaking updates on local volunteering opportunites or by going To Hope for New York http://hfny.org/event/384595-2012-10-30-hurricane-sandy-relief/
Many of New York City’s parks and playgrounds were impacted by Hurricane Sandy. If you would like to volunteer with NYC Parks to aid in clean up and recovery, please review the list of parks and playgrounds below that are in need of assistance this Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Click the links below to sign up in your borough and be sure to check back for updates on other parks in need of volunteers!
Bronx Van Cortlandt Park Orchard Beach
Click here to volunteer in the Bronx
Brooklyn Prospect Park McCarren Park
Click here to volunteer in Brooklyn
Manhattan Happy Warrior Playground Annunciation Park Carl Schurz Park
Anne Loftus Playground (at Fort Tryon Park) Randall’s Island (Friday and Saturday only) Click here to volunteer in Manhattan
Queens (Friday and Saturday only) Brookville Park Baisley Pond Park
Click here to volunteer in Queens
*American Red Cross now accepting donations through iTunes and their website..
In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, you can once again contribute to the American Red Cross’ relief efforts in the United States directly from iTunes. Apple’s music store is simply facilitating donations to the foundation, and thankfully 100 percent of contributions go directly to the Red Cross. You can donate anywhere from $5 to $200 via iTunes, but Apple warns that it “may not qualify for any tax deduction or other tax benefits.” Of course, you can always donate directly at the American Red Cross’ website, and you can volunteer with the foundation, the New York City government, with New Jersey’s state government, and elsewhere.
To donate, visit www.redcross.org, call 1-800-RED-CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Contributions may also be sent to your local Red Cross chapter or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013.
*Donations being accepted: The Brooklyn Kitchen & Meat Hook are accepting the following donations for those in the Rockaways:
Canned Goods Nonperishable Food Blankets Jackets Gloves Hats Socks Plates Cups Bowls Utensils Cleaning Supplies Brooms Mops Sponges Garbage Bags Water
You can make your donations at 100 Frost Street
* Donations Being Matched Craigconnects and Craig Newmark are matching donations to Sandy relief up to $25,000. Learn more about making a donation here.
*In New Jersey: Covenant House in New Jersey is working to provide a place to stay for homeless youth and orphans. Learn about their cause and how you can help here.
* The Salvation Army The Salvation Army is accepting monetary donations since these allow the organization to meet the often unique, material, financial, and physical needs of disaster survivors. There are a few ways in which you guys can send donations:
Online: Visit http://www.salvationarmyusa.org
By Phone: 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769).
Text-to-Give: Text the word STORM to 80888, and confirming the donation with the word, “Yes.”*
By Mail: Checks may be designated and made out to:
The Salvation Army Disaster Services Center
PO BOX 1959
Atlanta, GA 30301.
At this point, in-kind donations, such as used clothing and used furniture, are not being accepted for hurricane relief. However, these items are vital to supporting the day-to-day work of your local Salvation Army. Please consider giving these items to your local Salvation Army Family Store or dial 1-800-SA-TRUCK (1-800-728-7825). Checks may be made out to The Salvation Army Disaster Services Center, PO BOX 1959 Atlanta, GA 30301. Please designate “2012 Hurricane Season” on all checks.
And finally, Ten Tips For Donating Smart http://globalpossibilities.org/hurricane-sandy-10-tips-for-donating-smart/
* UPDATE: 11/3/2012
Please feel free to add to, update this list as I will be doing the same. May God Bless Us All.
To all in love, who still believe in love and are holding on tight to love.
I found this post via @kinacosper at a time I really needed to be reminded of it. Being reminded of this not only changed my emotional outlook but my day ended with a blessing I could not imagine. I hope it blesses you too.
Of all the things that can be stolen from you – your possessions, your youth, your health, your words, your rights – what no one can ever take from you is…
While you focus on those long time “friends” or relatives who have disappointed or betrayed you, God is showing u that part of ur history is over & that his story for ur life is greater than what you’ve thus far created. We live life on levels & arrive in stages. When we have outgrown a spiritual stage, we will finally awaken to see what we were unable to see for so long in our blindness. It will seem as though our “friends” are suddenly turning against us or changing when they are in fact being the SAME as they always were. What’s changed is your vision, your awareness, and your ability to now see the light. So bless them on their journey and be thankful for the lesson on YOUR journey. Be grateful that while ppl change, as we evolve, God’s love stays the same and unchanging. #FD